1 – Introduction
Welcome to the Jumpstarter!
Here are your 6 quick and simple techniques every reactive or easily distracted dog and their owner should know for calm canine behaviour and relaxing walks.
There’s an activity to relax your dog at home, a technique for calm confidence on walks, an exercise for recall and one for loose lead walking… plus most essential of all, a guide to recognising what your dog is trying to tell you.
The 6 pieces fit together to create calm canine behaviour. For example, if your dog is calm before they leave the house, they’ll be calmer on walks. If you can’t walk past another dog or person or whatever the distraction may be on lead without being able to maintain your dog’s focus, you’ll struggle even more off lead. All the activities complement one another and give you the quick-start tools you need to make your dog calm down and pay attention to you.
That’s not all… you will also have access to the full replay suite of training from our Stress Free Dog Walks Challenge starting 6th January including videos and step-by-step guides for each daily activity and recordings from the daily lives where we’ll go deep into the psychology of how to keep your dog calm in any situation. You’ll also be invited to an exclusive live Q&A where you can ask us ANYTHING about your dog’s training or behaviour problems and leave with personalised advice.
About the 6 activities in the Jumpstarter
Working on isolated training exercises is unlikely to result in those relaxed, stress free walks you want. A multi-angle approach is infinitely more efficient and effective in tackling training and behavioural problems.
Develop a toolkit of practical training techniques and activities to keep your dog relaxed at home and before going for walks. At the same time, start practicing at home the techniques that will make your dog pay attention to you and listen to you in the face of distractions on walks.
These skills fall into 3 categories:
- Calming Collection
- Distraction Defeaters
- Scentventure Stations
You need techniques from each category to make your dog calm down and listen to you. Scentventure is exponentially greater than the sum of the parts. Apply any one of the activities and you will gain from it, but the real results come when they are applied in their entirety. And applied consistently.
Start this training in the house, then progress to the garden, then to a very quiet walking location. In fact, until you and your dog are both fluent in these skills, only walk in quiet places. Unless your dog masters these in quiet places, they will have no chance in busier spots.
It may feel terribly un-British and impolite, but if you do encounter a trigger approaching (a person, a dog, a cyclist, a child – whatever it is that sends your dog into meltdown), turn around and walk in the opposite direction. Who cares what people think? The most important thing is you avoid your dog repeating the unwanted behaviour (practice makes perfect) or becoming too stressed or excited to concentrate. Repeat the mantra: ‘It’s Ok To Walk Away.’