September 16, 2021

Veterinarian Daily News

Veterinarian Daily News

Reduce Handling & Vet Anxiety In Your Dog With ‘Consent Conditioning’ Or Cooperative Care

3 min read

(Image credit: CokaPoka / Getty Images)

If you’ve recently adopted a dog and started researching training methods and tips, you may have come across the term consent conditioning or cooperative grooming. But what exactly do these terms mean? And how can you successfully teach them to your dog?

In a nutshell, consent conditioning is about enabling your dog to be comfortable and secure in performing certain commands and tasks. For example, if your dog is afraid of you cutting their nails, you can teach them to “agree” when they feel more relaxed.

Veterinarians sometimes refer to this as “cooperative care”. When your dog goes to the vet, they can consent to the vet’s handling, which can give them more control and security. This will make the vet’s job easier and will keep your dog in a calmer state.

It’s a different approach than forcing or demanding your dog to obey certain commands even when he’s uncomfortable. Here’s what you need to know about consent conditioning for your dog.

What exactly is consent conditioning?


It is best to think of consent conditioning as a training method that will allow your dog to be comfortable and calm in certain situations.

Once the dog indicates that he is comfortable – perhaps by sitting in a favorite spot or spot in the house – you can then instruct him to perform certain tasks or behaviors, such as: B. to wear a harness or a collar.

You can also use this technique to help keep her calm during grooming sessions, veterinarian visits, or other potentially stressful situations.

The idea behind consent conditioning is that when a dog is happy and well, it is more likely to do well with training rather than being forced into behaviors that may worry or stress it.

By allowing your dog to consent, you are also allowing him to participate in his own training and grooming, hence the term “cooperative care”.

How can I practice consent conditioning with my dog?


When it comes to giving your dog consent conditioning, you can start by finding a safe place or situation. Once you’ve found a place that your dog is naturally comfortable with, instruct them to stay still before moving on and teaching them the next step, such as walking. B. wearing a harness.

The YouTube video above is a great starting point for a beginner who could use an introduction to the technique.

When trying to add consent conditioning to your training plan, it is important to pay attention to your dog’s body language and identify any signs of dissatisfaction or stress.

When a dog feels unhappy or stressed, they are less likely to learn and obey new commands and behaviors. Because who doesn’t want to feel comfortable and secure?

Remember, the conditioning of consent in dogs does not involve consent in the usual way that we would associate it with humans. But if you can find a way to make sure your dog is in a happy and calm room while teaching him commands and behaviors, you will find that he is much more likely to be ready to follow your lead.

Have you ever tried consent training or cooperative grooming training with your dog? Do they feel more relaxed while exercising, handling or visiting the vet? Let us know in the comments below!

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