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NaereeMemberJanuary 11, 2022 at 1:29 pm
I practiced this on three of our dogs, Orckers (American Pitbull Terrier), Aewie Kiwi Bird (Pomeranian), and Ollie Dingo (14 lb. mutt).
I got each of them to come up to their play bed on the floor.
Orckers initially did not want to engage (he wanted to nap on his favorite chair), but with some scratches on his back, he obliged and sat on his bed. He kept wanting to stand up, but he is a very good boy and followed my “sit” command to sit back down each time. Giving him his favorite back scratches and scratches behind his ears got him to relax and let me pretend to give him a massage.
He yawned a couple of times (unsure if it was a stress yawn or relaxed yawn, but I think it was the latter since he was enjoying the scratches he was getting). He had soft eyes, and his ear positions alternated between moving toward back a little bit and relaxing to the side of his head.
Aewie the Pom is on the hyper side so I was a bit worried to get him to sit still. He usually darts about looking for activities. He calmed very quickly after receiving some back scratches and stayed still in the upright sitting position. His eyes were soft, his ears were flat toward the back, and he air licked a few times while getting his back scratches.
Ollie Dingo is typically a very calm one, so it was easy to get him on the dog bed and sit still. He also enjoyed his back scratches and I could feel his skin twitch. His eyes were soft, he lifted his nose up in the air a little. His ears that are typically erect upward were sort of down each side. His tail curved toward the back at times but would be relaxed down, alternating between.
I practiced observing each of their body language as I interacted with each. I tried to pay attention to their movements, their facial expressions, eyes, ears, whether they were tensing up or relaxing.