Stopping when your Dog Stops

09/02/2022

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STOPPING WHEN YOUR DOG STOPS

Stopping when your dog stops can be an easy first step in helping you both stay safe, feel safe and prevent over reactivity.

When your dog stops moving, stop with them. This gives you time to observe and process what’s happening.

If they stop and sniff, support them by waiting. A good sniff can help lower your dog’s pulse rate and allowing your dog to use their nose is important for their wellbeing.

If they stop and watch the environment, watch with them. This can be a great bonding experience.

If they stop and look at you, this may indicate they need help. Think about what they might be trying to tell you and support them, perhaps by ending whatever is happening.

If there is a trigger present and your dog stops, let them watch for a few seconds and see if they naturally disengage. If not you can prompt them to move on. Watch out for your dog staring intently or becoming fixated. If this happens you’ll want to interrupt immediately and gain distance.

Responding appropriately when your dog chooses to stop allows them to process what is happening and practice making good choices while still enabling you to step in and support when needed.

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