All I am asking for is a little respect

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Continuing with the Otter Tail Kennels cornerstones to training, today we will discuss respect. As the legend Aretha Franklin said, “R E S P E C T. Find out what it means to me.”

Respecting your dog is an essential part of not only training, but dog ownership in general. God gave us these fine animals to care for. We must provide for and love them from puppies to old age.

We believe that respect is the most important cornerstone. Whether you are training your dog to become a master hunter or a lap dog they need to be treated with respect.

Here are ways you can respect your retriever:

  • Give them a regular diet of quality dog food and clean drinking water.
    We discussed diet in previous articles but to sum it up, dogs are creatures of habit and thrive on the same food at the same time each day.

  • Allow them time for play as well as work.
    If you are training your dog as a working dog, play time and work time need to be separated. But both are vital. The dog needs to know when it is time to work whether that work involves a duck blind, a corn field, or an AKC hunt test. And they should also understand when it is time to play. You can help your dog understand this with your body language and voice inflection. You can encourage playtime with an upbeat tone and excitement in your voice. Your body language and voice when working should be a bit more serious.

  • Relieve unwarranted stress
    Dog’s get stressed when they do not understand what you want from them. So to relieve stress the number one thing you can do is be consistent. For instance, no matter if you are in work mode or play mode, when you say SIT the dog needs to SIT.

  • Regular veterinarian appointments and vaccinations
    Dogs need to be seen regularly by a vet you trust. Make sure they stay up to date on vaccinations and medications such as heart worm.

Until next time, happy retrieving.

Steve Smith