Webinar 1.5 hours intensive training
Improving Welfare, Reducing Stress
- This webinar looks at:
- Stress in humans
- Stress in dogs
- Do’s and don’ts
- Signs of stress
- Reducing stress
- Choices and the four c’s
Improving Welfare, Reducing Stress
What is stress?
Both humans and animals experience stress. Dogs are often kept in homes as part of the family.
We must remember they are dogs and have their own needs. We must remember that while they are a part of our families, they are dogs, and all have their own individual needs.
Reducing stress creates more manageable, cooperative, stronger relationships with our dogs and a safer environment. If we can learn to recognise how a dog is feeling, we can help him to feel safe again and avoid problems.
A stressor is any experience, environment, or inanimate or living object that disrupts the body’s normal state of functioning.
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Improving Welfare and Reducing Stress Webinar
The presence of a stressor results in a stress response, defined as physiologic and behavioural changes that attempt to return the body to normal state of functioning. Homeostasis.
The response can be mild or intense along a spectrum from a quick return to baseline or a quick escalation to extreme stress, which is called distress, or the fight or flight response.
Stress in general affects dogs but when stress surpasses the stress threshold a cascade of electrochemical reactions take place called a stress response.
This level of stress is called over stress. It creates a chemical and functional disturbance. When a dog is acutely affected by stressful stimuli, a flood of chemicals surge into the brain.
When this happens the dog’s threshold for responding reactively or aggressively is lowered. The threshold for aggressive behaviour is lowered in dogs under stress.
If we consider human psychology and how humans respond to situations in their lives, resilience is how well a person can adapt to those situations and events. A person with good resilience can “bounce back” and recover quickly. They will still experience these events and situations in the same way but are able to use their skills to adapt and recover quicker.
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We all have a degree of resilience. Humans can learn to increase their own resilience – this is a skill that can be learned. As humans, we tend to be more sensitive to negative information than positive – and this can reflect in how we view our dog’s behaviour too. Very often we ignore their calm behaviour and only notice the unwanted behaviours. We can build their confidence by praising them for things we want to see more of. Knowing that dogs are naturally more sensitive to negative information (and emotions) than to positive and also knowing that dogs react to the negative emotions of others with stress, is yet another reason to conclude that we should avoid aversives when we train and interact with our dogs.
We need careful observation – to identify the triggers for any anxiety or avoidance behaviours.
We must set our dogs up for success. If a dog is successful he is more likely to repeat the behaviour, go at his pace, taking things slowly and above all, make it fun. Giving a dog autonomy as much as possible can lead to a balanced mind and body. As above, this is best done through creating choices.
This course donates £10 to charity.
Times are tough at the moment for animal charities; many are experiencing a sharp decline in donations and animal adoptions and are under increasing pressure to survive these difficult times. We are doing all we can to support them with raising awareness and raising funds and are pleased to announce that we will be donating 50% of the fees from all our Dog Training Course Webinars. Simply enrol on to any of these three webinars, complete your purchase and £10 will be contributed on your behalf.