Instill stillness

Today our dogs seem to be more reactive and sensitive to the things that are going on around them. And because there is so much to see and hear they are constantly on the go, buzzing without rest, unable to stop themselves. We have to strive to create calmness, the turbulent environment rarely affords more than moments of respite, and those are fleeting, with the upcoming onset of chaos anticipated with more movement and preparation.

Stillness becomes a habit if we work at it. Progressively presenting an environment that can be watched and ignored. Allowing the sensitivity to flourish in the right context, the action and excitement in the thrill of the game outside. Instilling the habit of stillness occurs at all the other times. The easiest methods, although can be difficult to follow, are simply to use a crate or pen, and a securely tethered lead.

Gradually stillness can extend, like a swimming pool without anyone splashing around, the calmness and inaction can settle things down. As the reaction to things gets swallowed by the quiet, the sensitivity gets tuned to the moment of release, when you are then able to move to the dog, to open the door of the crate, to unclip the lead, to engage the dog with the thrill of movement, the chance to open up and channel the enthusiasm in the right way.

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