Written by: Robin Bennett, CPDT-KA
Please note, I received compensation in exchange for this blog post. – Robin Bennett, CPDT-KA
Valentine’s Day is almost here, and it’s a great time to spend some quality time with those we love…including our dogs! The best relationship with your dog is one based on mutual trust and cooperation. Here are a few simple ways you can strengthen your bond and show your dog how much love him or her!
Training – Most people assume you train your dog just to teach them basic manners. But did you know that training your dog to do anything is a great way to build your relationship with one another? You can work on fun tricks, household manners, or just games to play in your house. Any of these training activities will help strengthen your relationship with your pup. Be sure to use positive reinforcement methods and focus on making the training fun. A great way to keep the love theme going with this is to incorporate ACANA™ High Protein Biscuits. Shaped like hearts, these treats are made from nutritious ingredients that you and your dog will both love!
Walking together – Spend some quality time with your dog by taking him or her on a walk. Your dog will enjoy the time to sniff new smells, see new sights, and experience new adventures with you. Take this up a notch by going to new locations periodically. This is a great way to build your relationship together, and it helps tire both of you!
Sleep together – One thing I generally recommend for all pups is that they be allowed to sleep in the room with their humans. You don’t have to let your dog sleep on the bed to get this benefit (although I don’t have a problem with dogs on the bed if your adult dog has no behavioral issues). Just being in the same room together can help give your dogs some time to be with you. Especially if you work during the day and the dog spends hours at home alone. Consider putting your dog’s bed or crate in your bedroom with you for a cozy bonding experience.
One on one attention – Show some love to your dog by giving them a brush out, a massage, or just calm petting. The goal is to find an activity your dog really enjoys, so you can spend one on one time together. Although getting a nail clipping isn’t often much fun, many dogs will enjoy some gentle strokes, light massage, or just snuggling on the couch. These can all be ways to bond with your dog. Pair these activities with tasty treats like heart-shaped High Protein Biscuits and you’ll find your dog a willing participant.
New Toys – Find some toys you and your dog can play with together. Tug toys, balls for fetch, or even a flirt pole are all good options that allow you to play with your dog. However, you can also play games like hide and seek (let your dog find you), or any of the puzzle toys designed for dogs. Any toy that allows you and your dog to play together will help build your bond. Even better…take your dog shopping and try out a few things in the store together to decide what your dog really loves.
Give some of these activities a try to help find the best way to bond with your dog and share the love, and I hope you all have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!
Robin Bennett is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA). To learn more about her, visit her at www.TheDogGurus.com