Monday, 16 October 2017

Would you go to work in a swimsuit?

What clothes did you put on this morning?  Did you throw on an old t-shirt and jogging bottoms ready to get on with painting the bathroom?

Or did you choose a smart outfit ready for that big interview?

What if you work from home, do you wear “work” clothes or have you ever tried to work in your PJs? How did it feel?!

The clothes we wear help us to get into the right mindset for the task ahead. Think about dress down days at the office, often there’s a more relaxed atmosphere and a bit more laughter too.

And if you’re wondering what on earth this has to do with dog training, bear with me!

What we wear helps us to do our jobs or tasks better, and not just because it’s easier to run well in decent shoes and sports bra (for those of us that need one!).

I spent the weekend learning more about tracking from Allyson Tohme down in Cambridgeshire with Bronte (my collie). Bronte mostly does TD Scentwork and her preferred style includes lots of movement and air scenting.

Now I’m asking Bronte to follow a new smell, and in straight careful lines (at first).

Enter another new harness - and no I don’t have a harness problem, just a lot of sport interests! Bronte actually has the fewest harnesses of all my dogs…

I was concerned that if Bronte wore her normal Scentwork harness she might go back to that style of sniffing and searching when it got more difficult. With Bronte being deaf and part-blind, I needed to make things as distinct as possible – so we used a different style of harness and a new hand signal.

New sport = new clothes!

Bronte has a different harness for canicross (running and pulling in front), wimbling walks (allowed to move around but not drag me), TD Scentwork (only used when we’re doing serious sniffing), and now a tracking harness.

Putting each harness on helps Bronte understand what her “job” is going to be, and you can see her getting into a totally different frame of mind too.

If Bronte pulled a lot on walks, we’d use a front attachment harness. So the lead getting clipped to the front ring on her chest would = loose lead walking time.

How does your dog know what his job is when you get ready to go on a walk, saunter into town or prepare for a sport like tracking, TD Scentwork or Rally?

Happy walking and stay safe in the wind this week

Morag and the collie girls

PS If you need to try out harnesses. we stock and fit the Dog-Games fleece Perfect Fit range of harnesses, plus we have a range of canicross running equipment too. Just drop us an email to arrange a fitting

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