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Old December 9th, 2011, 11:31 PM
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luckypenny luckypenny is offline
Doggie Wench
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: St. Philippe-de-Laprairie, Qc
Posts: 11,812
Thank you so much for giving some of your valuable time to these dogs in need .

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dog Dancer View Post
Their life in a kennel is not very stimulating so when they do get outside for a walk I would imagine they are very interested in sniffing and checking things out.
My thoughts exactly. Firstly, they're most likely not getting the physical and mental stimulation they need in a shelter. Dogs also explore their environment mainly through their sense of smell. What you're witnessing when you take one outdoors is their attempt to discover their surroundings in addition to expending their pent up energy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by violagirl View Post
Do you have any suggestions on how to get a dog that is not used to having human interaction to be more interested?
Quote:
Originally Posted by violagirl View Post
So back to my original question, should I concentrate on creating a bond with a few of the animals instead of just walking who hasn't been out yet?
I'm thinking their basic needs must be met foremost and that would be through some sort of vehicle to get the exercise they need. Bonding/trust comes in time and realistically, how much time would you, as a volunteer, have with each dog? Just walking/playing with them is an immense help to begin with and I think that should remain your priority if you're comfortable with it. As you get to know the individual personalities of the dogs, you'll learn what gets their attention best. You're on the right track here:

Quote:
Originally Posted by violagirl View Post
I will up the ante with the type of treats I'll bring and be patient.
Some dogs are more food motivated while others prefer play, toys, affection. Yet others would prefer a good sniffing session, a run, or chasing balls. You'll discover soon enough which dogs prefer what.

Quote:
Originally Posted by violagirl View Post
For example, one dog was a very jumpy, nippy Lab. She was friendly but horrible to walk, if I worked with her a couple times a week, I might be able to help her to jump less and walk better.
This is a great example. She reminds me of a Black Lab I used to walk at a shelter...I ended up adopting her two months later , lol. Your girl sounds like she has lots of energy that needs to be spent. Rather than a walk at first, can you take her to play in a yard? Is she food and toy motivated? Try tossing her a ball and see if she brings it back to you (you can always entice her with treats). If she can get at least 10 minutes of hard running before you head out for a walk, she may be a little more calm as she gets used to her routine with you. In time, you may even be able to teach her simple cues like sit, stay, come, etc..

Quote:
Originally Posted by violagirl View Post
I am torn between, just giving a dog a chance to get out of the kennel and building something with a dog. I'm not sure how much progress I can make, just randomly selecting dogs that need to walk.
Quote:
Originally Posted by violagirl View Post
Not sure how other shelters work. Do you walk different dogs every time? or just walk who hasn't been yet?
It's hard when there are so many and you only have so much time, eh? I give you lots of credit for trying to find the best answers. This is just me but, I would focus on making sure they each get time outdoors first. Of course, I don't know how many dogs there are at your shelter and if it's even feasible for you to take them all out given your time constraints. Once you're done with the walking/exercise, if you have an extra 10-15 minutes, choose a dog you think might benefit from some more one-on-one time with you. I used to leave my 'favorites' until the end of my day or I'd feel too guilty for spending more time with them than the others .

Please keep us updated on your progress and experiences at the shelter. It won't always be easy but the rewards are more than worth it, I promise .
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