This lays the foundation for a lot of different things in Dog Training. You can use this when guests come over and you need the dog to wait politely before they are greeted, or to provide the comfort of something familiar in a new environment. Once a dog understands the mat to be a positive place, they can experience physiological relaxation in places that may have otherwise been ‘scary’ or ‘over-arousing’.
I use this very frequently on a daily basis with Solea. She waits on her bed everyday as I prepare and serve her meal. In fact, often times she will go to it by herself as a way of telling me that it’s getting close to dinner time!
I also send her to her mat while I gather the things before we go out for practice, work or walks. This assures her that if she remains calm, good things will happen!
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