Activities For A Protective Dog

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Introduction

There are several dog breeds that are known to be of the protective type. Inclusions are the Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher, Bullmastiff and the Bernese Mountain Dog. These canines can also have a happy balance of goofiness and affection in their personalities so be sure to include in their daily regimen of fun and play, activities that allow them to let their innate nature shine through. If you have a protective dog and want to know what you can do for them that will encourage bonding with you and allow healthy personality growth, read on!

Pack Walk

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Any Day
Moderate
Normal
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Leash
Waste Bags
Water
Activity description
Although having a protective dog can be a good thing, keeping them well socialized is a must if you want to be able to take them with you wherever you go. After all, if you do not ensure that your pup is comfortable around other dogs and is sociable with humans and canines alike in every situation, then you may see dog aggression and suspicion of humans develop in your dog. Nip that in the bud when your best buddy is young by consistently meeting with other dog walkers in an environment that encourages free play among the dogs. Walking is good exercise for you and your dog, and is an activity that your pup will eagerly do in any weather.
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Select the pack
Some dog owners, if they are uncertain of how their dog will act when introduced to a pack, will choose to join a dog walking club or training facility that has an experienced hands-on trainer who knows how to handle dogs that may be developing protective personalities. A quick online search and a visit to the facility will be a good start. Choose a pack trainer and group based on your comfort level after you have seen the group in action (without your dog along, as an observer).
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Assessment
The chosen group leader or trainer should assess your dog based on your day to day relationship and routine with your dog, your socialization efforts so far, what stresses them, and more. Classes and training will typically be on a weekly basis at the minimum (with some schools offering classes as often as you want to attend), with homework for you to complete throughout the week. The goal of the classes will be for your dog to feel safe and confident and for you to feel assured in their behavior in all situations.
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3
Walking fun
After an orientation class and the assessment, you and your precautionary pup can join the pack for walks on a regular basis. These walks will give your dog a chance to go on fun outings that will help them learn to balance their need to protect. Having a dog who dotes on you is very special but at the same time, it is best for them to have a sense of composure and excitement when they interact with other dogs and people. Going on pack walks is a win-win situation for both of you!
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Drills

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Any Day
Moderate
Normal
30 - 60 min
Items needed
Leash
Waste Bags
Activity description

Dogs who have a protective personality are also known to be intelligent and highly trainable. Take advantage of these wonderful traits by introducing your dog to exercise drills that will give them plenty of exercise on a daily basis. From mental workouts to physical forms of training, your dog will agree that variety is the spice of life! Choose from activities to do at home or while on an outing. Of low cost to you, these drills will ensure a payoff in tranquility and happiness for your safeguarding sidekick.

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1
A-frame
Your clever and caring dog will be over the moon when you teach them how to go over an A-frame! If you are a DIY sort of person, you can easily build an A-frame suitable for your dog to traverse. Remember though, do not make the ascent and descent too steep. You do not want to injure your dog - build up the challenge as they learn and master the obstacle.
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Bounce and fetch
Protective dogs often have that trait because of inherited tendencies from their parents but this personality attribute often gets out of hand due to sheer boredom and excess energy. Guarantee your pup will be ready for sleep and relaxation at day’s end by playing a game of bounce and fetch. Take your dog to an area near home such as a school parking lot where you can bounce the ball off the side of the building, allowing it to bounce again as it hits the pavement. Use a ball with an erratic bounce for more of a workout for your dog!
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3
Puzzle toys
Treat toys and food puzzles are an excellent way to give your dog a mental workout while they work for a treat or a meal. Shop online or in the pet store to select a challenging toy that can keep your dog busy for 30 minutes or more as they manipulate the puzzle in order to obtain their reward.
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Busy Body

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Any Day
Free
Normal
10 - 30 min
Items needed
Leash
Waste Bags
Toys
Backpack
Water
Activity description

While it is pretty obvious when a dog is being protective, it is not always apparent why. It is often an inherited trait that needs to be toned down or recessed, although many dogs appear to be protective due to anxiety. This anxious behavior can result from the simple fear of being left alone. You love your dog very much, so help them to learn that a little bit of separation is a good and natural thing. Simple actions can be taken that will help your dog to appreciate downtime on their own and relax in the fact that you will always be there for them when they really need it.

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1
Daily Strolls
Whether you choose to take a quick stroll a few times a day or decide to go on a hike of an hour or more a few times a week, varying the destination will help your dog get used to the fun of exploring new sights, sounds and smells. This, in turn, will tire them out and make them less interested in being overprotective. Incorporate a few runs into the week, too.
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2
Job Seeker
Give your dog a job to do. Your protective dog thinks that watching over you is their duty which means that characteristics from the parents are shining through. Generations before may have had a working relationship with the owner (such as the Rottweiler and carting or the Bernese and herding) and this tendency to need a job to do will remain. Have them wear a backpack, carrying their own water as you hike!
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3
Toy pick-up
Teach your watchful dog to “protect” and take care of their balls and stuffies. Your clever and intuitive dog will have no problem learning how to identify toys by name and put them away in a designated toy box. Teaching your furry buddy this useful skill will enable them to take some of the protectiveness off of you and on to their toys!
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More Fun Ideas...

Obedience Class

Enroll your protective pup in obedience classes. This activity will provide socialization and additionally, having an obedient dog will come in handy when the need arises.

Beach Run

A protective dog sometimes becomes even more so because they are bored and have nothing better to do! Keep them busy and stimulate their mind in other ways by getting them outside in the elements to enjoy their surroundings. Do double duty by going on a beach run which will tire them out at the same time!

Conclusion

Having a protective dog is not a bad thing. There is something to be said for an attentive canine companion who always has your back. However, for a healthy all-around dog, a happy balance between having a pawsome bond and a positive relationship is essential to both you and your pup. Interact with your dog and invest time in their well-being whether it is through classes, physical exercise, or teaching them to be independent.