Ring Nerves

Posted: September 25, 2011 in Performance & Judging

The pressure is on as we move into the last three months of 2011. Last chance to finish titles.

We get nervous. And be assured that our dogs, who are tuned in to every breath we take, get nervous too. I am always amazed by the number of people who have been competing for 20 or 30 years yet remain clueless when it comes to reading stress signs in their dogs. Ever notice how many dogs are overcome with scratching at the start sign? That’s not a swarm of flies biting them. It’s stress.

You think your dog is yawning because he’s bored or tired? It’s stress.

Sniffing? Instead of blaming the trials hosts for not cleaning the mats, blame yourself for correcting a sniffing dog when he’s just trying to calm himself. Your corrections add more stress to his burden of trying to please you.

What’s the remedy? Relax and make training fun, train in short sessions and most of all do some deep breathing of your own.

 

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