With Our Resident Animal Behaviourist 

Simple Ways to Improve Your Dog’s Quality of Life

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Dogs are sentient beings, they have rich emotional lives and can feel scared, happy, worried. Good animal welfare standards include ensuring they feel safe- safe in their environment, safe out on a walk, safe interactions with other species and humans, safe when being transported, safe when being handled, safe when eating and feeling safe in their daily lives

Help them feel safe

  • Ensure they have positive associations to all that is new or that may worry them by using positive reinforcement methods of training only

Never force your dog into situations that make them feel threatened, worried or scared

A dog feeling safe and comfortable in their home

Environmental enrichment

Dogs need mental stimulation to thrive.

Mental exercise tires a dog’s brain and body more than just physical exercise.

Opportunities to sniff, forage, explore, and eat from fun food puzzles all provide dogs with mental exercise.

Make their environment interesting and fun by giving them stuff to do: ball games with you, appropriate and safe dog chewies as well as scatter feeding to get them sniffing and scenting and for dogs who enjoy digging- create a digging patch especially for them

A dog engaged in clicker training- positive reinforcement

Provide your dog with food enrichment, like a food dispenser toy- Kong

Create a fun place for your dog to dig

Spend time with them

Dogs were domesticated to live closely with and alongside humans meaning that isolating them to a life with no contact goes against their genetic makeup and is an act of emotional and mental cruelty

Dogs need social contact and a happy, healthy relationship with their humans

Spend time with them through a game of fetch or “find it”; include them in family activities or take them for a walk where they can enjoy themselves, bond with you and sniff (it’s like reading the newspaper!)

Dogs need to have outlets to appropriate chewies.  Chewing helps dogs feel calm and releases happy hormones in the brain

Dogs are social beings and enjoy social bonding with their humans

Sniffing is a critical part of a dog’s life, it is the way they “see” and “understand” their world

Play is a wonderful way to bond

It's a dog's life! Our resident Animal Behaviourist shares tips on how to make a happier home for your dog

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