Building confidence through self-discovery

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It has been a while since I chimed in about nose work hoping that people would spend some time allowing their dogs to build their natural desire to hunt and search, while being brave enough to put the formal obedience aside.

Often in the beginning phases of training, students ask about the end results of the process and about teaching their dog a "final response" or “how do I get my dog sit when they’ve found their hidden treasure”. Since the ultimate goal for many of our students is to try their hand at K9 Nose Work competition they become focused on the end of the journey and not the journey itself.

The goal in developing K9 Nose Work as an activity (based in part on the concept of detection style training), was to offer dog enthusiasts and casual pet owners an opportunity to allow their dogs to explore their natural ability in a safe environment while offering their people the chance to truly learn their dog’s individual communication style.

There are many ways in which a person can start teaching a dog the concept of searching. You can teach the dog the end result first and then back chain or you can allow through the dog and handlers’ own self-discovery the true joy of the journey in the search itself.

Regardless of the activity you chose to do with your dog, spend some time enjoying the journey and allow the dog to discover its own natural abilities. By doing this you will develop the natural bond with your dog that comes with true team work.

Happy hunting everyone!