Saturday, January 9, 2010

Bonding with Marley

I've just finished reading Bonding with Your Dog by Victoria Schade and I found it fascinating.

She indicates there is a difference between a dog that loves you, listens to you and is bonded with you. A bonded dog will find you interesting and look towards you for fun.

One of the suggestions I've incorporated into our life is spontaneity. All meal times and potty breaks have not changed, I want this to be fun not stressful. We are taking random walks during the day and I'll point out fun stuff for Marley to check out. Frogs are her new favorite even though I will not let her paw at them or lick them.

I've stopped asking her to play fetch (which she dislikes) and I've started keeping bubbles and my laser light handy. She loves chasing bubbles and the crazy little red bug from my pocket drives her crazy.

So far I feel great about how this has changed how we interact. While at the park she keeps an eye on me and comes the minute she feels I'm taking something out of my pockets. Our walks are so rewarding and fun. She has never really pulled on the leash but she used to forget where we were going and tend to walk behind me. I can now put my hands in my pockets and she walks along my side and I feel like we are in sync.

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