Dog School Goes to the Pub!

by Fiona Sinclair // November 2017

Across Dog School we are always looking for creative ideas to make the final week of our training classes fun and useful. So when a pub close to one of our training venues wanted to promote their ‘dog-friendly’ image, we jumped at the chance to take one of our training classes into the real world.

Our dogs did us proud; in the photo Bertie shows us how to settle and be calm in an unfamiliar place.

One of the main things we teach dog owners in our classes is their ‘settle’. This trains dogs to be relaxed and calm when their owner’s attention is not available. We practice settle every week in our training classes and see huge improvements in the dogs’ abilities to switch off and relax. Even in class full of puppies, we can have total silence and calm.

Dogs are very good at getting their owners’ attention and will figure out that barking, jumping up and stealing prized possessions is a great way to get a reaction!  At the end of a long day we might slump into our chair and ignore our dogs while they lie quietly beside us. But when the dog is bored and starts chewing our favourite shoe, suddenly we leap up and shower the dog with attention, rewarding the stealing with a great game of chase!

Teaching a settle depends on rewarding the dog for being relaxed and ignoring their owner. The dog has to figure out that rewards will only come when they choose to be calm and stop looking to their owner for attention. The owner has to remember to ignore the attention-seeking behavior; which many people find tricky – old habits die hard!

But with some Dog School coaching, look what can be achieved!

If you are interested in bringing your dog along to our classes, to see what you can you can achieve.

 You can contact us on edinburghdogschool@dogstrust.org.uk for more details.

 If you would like to follow us on social media you can find us on Instagram: @dogschooledinburgh or on Twitter: @DogSchoolEdin.