Providing your dog with at least some training makes the everyday life easier with your beloved pet. Training your dog ensures that he's safe and welcome everywhere he goes and that he's easy to live with. When you think of dog training and obedience, the most useful commands are sit, down, stay and come. It is important, that you are able to control your dog in all situations. Basic obedience-training is every dog owner's responsibility, but if you find training with your dog really fun, you can take things further. If you feel that you wish to compete with your dog, there are various dog sports to choose from.
World Canine Organization (FCI) has approved 358 different dog breeds. All breeds are divided into 10 groups. These groups are based on different attributes such as the dog's appearance or use. The 10 groups include:
Different dog breeds have different typical features. Some are bred for searching and rescue, some for hunting etc. When considering doing canine sports in a more active way, maybe even competing, it's wise to keep the breed characteristics in mind. Most commonly used sport dogs are Search & Rescue dogs.
Dobermann, Boxer, German Shepherd, Rottweiler, Giant Schnauzer and Belgian shepherd dogs are the best-known traditional working dog breeds. They are all medium sized, strong and moving dog breeds. The service dogs are bred to assist people in various tasks, for example searching for missing or wounded people and cattle, substances like ammunition or drugs, protecting against unwanted people or criminals and guard the area pointed to the dog.
There are several different sports, that utilize the service dog's natural breed characteristics. Some of them are international competitive sports, and each country might have its own customs and variations on the sport. The most common are:
Some dog sports are suitable for all breeds. They provide obedience training, fun and speed. Read a short description about the sports below.
One of the first games you can teach your dog is the which hand game; it’s the simplest method to get your dog used to using his nose rather than eyes. Use a piece of food or small toy and place in inside one of your closed fists. Present your dog with both hands and ask him “which hand?” Praise him when he lightly nudges, puts his nose on your hand, or paws at the correct hand – whichever behavior you prefer.
If your dog chooses the wrong hand open them up to show him where the treat is. Don’t give him the treat just close them and try again. When he gets it right give him a lot of praise and give the treat. Eventually with simple games like this your dog will begin to start using his natural talent, his nose, rather than relying on visuals.
Even though dogs have a sense of smell 1000 times greater than ours they tend to use their eyes a lot. Nose work games helps them focus on smells. To teach your dog to use his nose instead of visuals you’ll want to start with an object that’s really smelly. Treats work well here.Have your dog in his stay position. Place the treat around the corner and just slightly hidden so he’s not just spotting it with his eyes. Your dog might get a little frustrated at first if he’s not able to find the treat immediately.
You can then encourage and praise him when he’s close, you can even point it out to him if he’s having trouble. You’re aiming to make it fun and exciting for him, make sure to praise him when he finds it.You could make it easier on the dog by dragging the object on the floor or making ‘scent pads’ so it is easier to track with the nose. As your dog becomes more adept at sniffing things out you can up the challenge. You can place objects on chairs, under rugs, on the couch, window sills, anywhere where they are not going to see it right away.
This exercise is suitable for you who has your own garden or similar and want to give your dog a small challenge. Go out into the garden without the dog and throw and spread the tidbits on the lawn. Then let your dog out and exhort him to search, the dog will be working hard with his nose to find every little tidbit. Without much effort, you have given the dog a task which it will take very seriously.