I want to share this great research on the dog-human relationship.
“Our study suggests that dogs are influenced by how their owner interacts with them outside of training situations. How enthusiastic, warm, and present we are in the everyday lives of our dogs can influence how our four-legged companions rely on us in stressful situations.
This is important because sometimes people focus too much on training and forget that everything we do can matter. Whenever we interact with our dogs, we are telling them who we are, what we are for them, and whether they can count on us,” Giulia Cimarelli, researcher at the Unit of Comparative Cognition and at the Wolf Science Center of the Messerli Research Institute.
The timing of my seeing this comes at a great time as it has been a common theme among the past continuing education classes I have taken, and it is something that I see as very important foundation whether you are teaching your dog obedience type behaviors for good manners or you are working through an issue such as fear. If you are not someone who your dog wants to be with and focus on because you are fun, safe, and a source of clarity (in other words – there is a history of positive associations with you), you will have a tough time getting your dog to want to be your student. There are other factors too but the dog-human relationship is an important one.