Are There Fun Things You Can Do With Your Untrained Dog?
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Are there some fun things you can do with an untrained dog? Sure!
Games: The best game you can play with an untrained dog is Fetch. I teach Fetch to all dogs (though not all dogs will Fetch). Fetch is a fun game. But, more than that, Fetch has important values later on as the game gets more advanced. Fetch is great for exercising your dog, for example. And making life with you fun. Later on, those Fetch skills can be folded into your obedience work for even more fun, and to teach your dog more advanced skills. (For dogs that won’t return or drop the toy, you need someone to show you how to fix that… you don’t want to be yelling at your dog or chasing them down… that wrecks the whole point and causes other behavioral problems).
Basic Obedience: Huh? You thought maybe I was going to say something else, didn’t you? But, good obedience taught by a great trainer is enjoyable for your dog. First, your dog learns to walk nicely on a leash, so your dog can go more places. Dogs love going places and exploring. Obedience work helps your dog to learn and think. A boring life is frustrating for a dog, and so they get into trouble to occupy their minds. Your dog will also not get in as much trouble, so your dog will be happier for more hours of every day. And a well thought out program is supposed to be enjoyable and motivating for a dog.
Socialization: Dogs like to socialize. Meeting new people, meeting and playing with friendly dogs, and going new places. I enjoy watching my dogs grow up and loving life. I like showing off my new dog, and I like it when my dog is enjoying these new experiences. Watch dogs socialize some time… they are smiling, tails wagging, and they are happy!
Hanging Out: Dogs like to hang out with people. And I like hanging out with dogs. So, I find that time to be fun, and so do my dogs. I like just sitting on a porch, with a dog at my side, just hanging out. It’s great bonding time, and sometimes it is good to just spend some personal time with your dog, not going anywhere, not doing anything, not always on some kind of hectic schedule. Just being.
Meal Times: I use meal times as ways of teaching dogs a number of skills, and my dogs enjoy that, too. Dogs learn to eat in a mannerly way, and learn to not bother guests while we are eating. Dogs like to eat, so I can make meal times enjoyable for the dog and for myself.
Bed Time: Most dogs like sleeping in the bedroom with you at night. My dogs have all liked ending the day with me, and then waking up with me to start the next day. This is all part of having a great relationship with your dog.
I think many people have untrained dogs because they think that dog training is going to be miserable for the dog. It will be if you pick the wrong trainer. But, good training is enjoyable for the dog and the owner. There are so many other fun things you can do with a trained dog than you can with an untrained dog. You can go more places, enroll in many more fun activities (flyball, rally, agility, dog shows, protection training, herding classes). Better trained dogs are more at peace, and have less stress, so their play is more pure. And untrained dogs can, over time, become miserable to own, and lead miserable lives because they haven’t been taught how to cope with living in a human world.
So, start with the stuff up above, but seriously… get your dog trained. Your dog isn’t nearly having as much fun as is possible.
Sam Basso is a professional dog trainer and behaviorist, in the Phoenix/ Scottsdale metropolitan area. He’s known for being fun, kind, intelligent, and humane. Sam Basso has a unique personal touch. He has appeared on his own TV show, been a guest radio expert, gives seminars, publishes a dog related blog, does rescue volunteering, and is active in promoting animal welfare and fair dog laws.