Friday, August 14, 2009

Campers Training Shelter Dogs

One of the camp activities that the older kids enjoy doing is dog training. We put the kids into groups of three, and each group is given a dog to train. Many of the dogs haven't ever learned anything from their previous owners, and many are a challange to work with.

The kids enjoy being able to spend time with a shelter dog, but they also learn that training a dog can be much more difficult than it looks. Some of the dogs truly want to figure out what the kids want, but just can't figure it out. It's a typical case of inter-species failure to communicate.

We don't tell the kids what they have to teach the dogs -- this is camp after all and it's meant to be fun. But we do show them how to teach whatever interests them, and sometimes make suggestions.

This summer HAWS adoptable dogs learned how to sit and lay down (and some learned to calm down in the presence of kids -- an invaluable lesson!), spin, shake, rollover, go through a hula hoop, crawl beneath chairs, and just look so cute that the kids had to give them free treats.


Anonymous said...

OMG, the beagle (?) with the green color is ADORABLE.


HAWS said...

That would be Lily, and she is still waiting for a home. Very, very sweet dog, and smart too. I'm not a fan of the breed, but she is really wonderful!