Why Is Play So Important?

Matt says: “Playing games – whether it’s tug, fetch or something else – is a great way to enhance the relationship you share with your dog, and it’s crucial if you want to achieve training success. Play is also helpful for effectively reinforcing good behaviour, both during training sessions and in every day life. 

“Remember, though, that play should be just that… a fun time had by both you and your dog.  You should play because you want to play and like to play – it shouldn’t be something you force as this just leads to frustration on both sides. Don’t forget that dogs are great at reading our body language and can sniff out a ‘faker’ a mile off. So when you play, make sure you’re playing for the right reasons and it’s genuine. This is when it is most effective.” 

Comments (1)

Kim - Jan 18, 2017

I love the relationship that play can help build between dog and handler. However, I feel in some circles there is undue emphasis placed on the ‘importance’ of tugging. This puts pressure on both handlers and their dogs, turning what should be fun into a struggle for both parties.

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