The What Behind Obedience


Since I’ve been thinking about obedience a lot lately… I’ve realized there is a lot more to it than just training the exercises. The exercises themselves are really not all that difficult… some are more so than others. Go outs are tougher. Articles are tricky. Drops on Recalls as opposed to flat recalls are an issue. But seriously, teaching a dog to do all the exercises isn’t really all that difficult.

The difficulty rests in getting good, happy, motivated work out of a dog while doing so much obedience. Worry and anxiety can set into any dog in the obedience ring easily. It sure sets into us people often enough! Getting a good foundation of attention work is really important, too. I think I didn’t do that enough with Jet when he was a puppy. Not in a happy fun way where he chooses to be with me, rather than doing something else.

So I’m learning. It’s weird. But I’m just starting to understand about the What that’s behind obedience that I didn’t understand before now. But then I didn’t have a soft, sweet dog that I wanted to go far with. I understand how some people just want the natural obedience breeds such as Border Collies or Goldens. I don’t really want anymore BCs, I like my collies and Farmdog the best. And so I’m learning how to motivate them to work, even with stress and lack of treats in the ring.

Maybe it there were some scorpion helmets sitting in the ring to shake things up, that’d be interesting! LOL

2 thoughts on “The What Behind Obedience”

  1. That’s what I love about obedience, trying to get that connection in the ring and teaching dogs that heeling really is a FUN behavior!
    Just like agility really isn’t about the obstacles but the handling in between, obedience should be about the attitude of the dog and connection to handler. Getting that in training is one thing but then we try hard to get that same attitude in the ring where there’s no rewards and lots of stressed people.

    Have fun working with Jet! And that’s a fabulous picture!

  2. I think it is Sylvia Trkman who said on some thing I was reading that that was the challenge if you could teach heeling and have a dog that was happy and motivated and focused then teaching things like agility was a piece of cake, she said it much more elegantly I am sure but…..I know what you are saying, very cool how nice softer dogs teach us the art of the whole thing.

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