Play is a great tool for building confidence in dogs.
By tempting your dog into play with a motivational Tug-E-Nuff toy, your dog will learn that taking its eye off the surroundings for a few minutes can be fun and rewarding. It’s a great way to show your dog that they can safely relax and have fun - they don’t always have to be on high alert.
The type of tug toy used with nervous dogs can also make a big difference. We often recommend our range of chasers, which include real fur chasers, as well as faux fur alternatives. The beauty of these chaser tugs is that they have an extra long handle, which allows you to play from more of a distance - something which nervous dogs usually appreciate.
If you have a nervous dog, it’s also really important to give them plenty of time to adapt to new situations and to heap praise on them when they step out of their comfort zone.
Positive reinforcement only
At Tug-E-Nuff, we firmly believe in the importance of only ever using positive reinforcement. This means never punishing a dog for bad behaviour or for failing to do what you want them to do. For nervous dogs, punishment can shatter confidence even further. Positive reinforcement is all about rewarding and encouraging the behaviours you do want - and it’s proven to be far more effective too.