As sure as my yard becoming a mud pit or my sighting this morning of a cardinal is a harbinger to the coming change of season here in my neck of the woods, or city rivers of heavily Irish populations are being colored green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day signal it elsewhere, or even the looming deadline for filing income taxes in the U.S. is a spring rite for many, so too is the increase in calls from people wondering why their dog is so increasingly out of control.

All I can say is chant a mantra of calm that works for you and remember Pillar I (need I remind you it’s Distractions Distractions Distractions) is the first Pillar for a reason!

Try to find the awe of your dog either discovering or rediscovering the sights, sounds, smells and feel under their pawpads of spring with the accompanying mud, warmer temps for many of us, more critters waking up or coming back and definitely increased foot traffic as more and more people are starting to come out of their homes and greet the longer days.

Remember The Six Things All Dogs Should Know and practice practice practice so when it becomes a needed behavior, it’s been taught. Don’t get mad at the canine in your care if he runs off to chase the squirrel or she stops to sniff every vertical surface on your route, but make sure he knows how to come back when you call him NO MATTER WHAT or you find the balance between letting her savor the smells and getting walk in!

If it works for you and your dog, sign up for a spring class and have fun incorporating learning during a highly distracting time of year! Check out your local offerings and be sure to find one that allows off leash play time and uses positive methods!

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