Touch Training
The type of touch training I mean is the ability of your human to touch or inspect you closely without you flinching or trying to dodge away.

For the animal:
It encourages you to relax and allow your human to touch you without you being in fear of being harmed.

For the human:
It builds a bond between the human and the animal which will increase trust. This will make it easier to trim nails, check and clean teeth and most importantly inspect any potential injuries.

Touch training can be a long process as your human is expecting you to completely relax and allow them to touch you.

Stage 1 - Lying down
First you need to lie down in front of your human. This can be done at a distance and involves plenty of treats.
You need to get to the stage where you can lie for a few minutes in a very relaxed state. Your human will find a code word or phrase that is only used when they want this.

Next you need to start working on lying nearer to your human without being help down or touched.
This stage still involves loads of treats.

Stage one is completed when you lie down on command close to your human.
Treats will be involved possibly during, but definitely after this stage.

Stage 2 - Touch
This is another stage that involves lots of treats, but also requires lots of patience.

Lots of humans try to rush this stage and in the end never get touch training completely achieved.
While you are lying in front of your human, they will try touching your paw, side, tail or head. Just touching, nothing else.

Next they will try to get to the stage where they can touch or place their hand on you with out you flinching or getting up.

Stage 2 is completed when your human can ask you to lie in front of them and they can touch or stroke you without you flinching or moving away.
Treats will be involved in this stage

Stage 3 - Activities
This is the final stage and it has several sections. Each section can be done separately, but I would recommend inspection being the first activity to learn.

Activites:
Inspection:
This is required for checking for injuries or vet visits.
Your human must get you to trust them enough to carefully and gently check you for injury. This includes checking toes, eyes, ears, mouth, tail and all around your body.

Paws:
This is a good area for your human to be able to check for any injury or even be able to eventually trim your nails.

Ears:
I know we are particularly fussy about our ears being touched but it is essential you let your human check your ears.
Especially if you are prone to ear infection and need regular drops.

Face:
Allowing your human to inspect your face can lead to them being able to check your eyes and nose for infection.
Maintain your dental hygiene with regular brushing and be able to notice any problems earlier.

Body:
Being able to check your fur means you will be checked for fleas or other critters, or even tiny cuts from running through hedges.
You can get some great massages and have your fur brushed in the evening, which helps you settle down for the night.

At any stage, your human must allow you to get up and stop the activity, unless in the case of emergency.

Tags: Articles, Training