Improving Your Working Relationship with Your Dog: Training Bites Episode #1

Listen to “Training Bites #1- Your Relationship with Your Dog & Improving Recall” on Spreaker.

This week our first ever episode of Training Bites was released! Hannah has quickly become a great friend of mine and my go-to resource for all things dog training and agility.

You can find Hannah at or on Instagram

You can also email her any questions or requests for future Training Bites topics at

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Show Notes

Main Topic: Working Relationship

What is it? A working relationship is like a mutual understanding between you and your dog that the cues you give your dog are in their best interest.

Strong Working Relationship* = when you cue your dog (something that they understand and you have already trained previously), they follow through with that behaviour

Weak Working Relationship = dog ignores you when cued

*Strong working relationships are developed over time through consistently putting value in the behaviours you want by rewarding.

Hannah’s Tips for a Strong Working Relationship

Transfer of value from the rewards to you happens when you reinforce consistently for behaviours you like AFTER the dog does them (not using the rewards to lure or bride the dog into doing it – that’s called showing your money up front)

Be the bank of your dog’s life – when you have a working relationship it means your dog thinks of you as the bank or the boss of the job with an endless supply of valuable offerings. When your dog thinks of you as the bank, you have successfully transferred the value of the rewards to you so that your dog finds working with you valuable on its own

**Make the dog work for their food and any other things they find valuable by making them do even the simplest task before receiving that thing. Hand feed as much as possible

Hannah’s Recall Tips:

  • Long Line so you can ensure dog follows through
  • Consistent rewards for coming when called
    • If your dog doesn’t come when called, use line to reel the dog in and reward when they get to you even though it was your idea
  • Make their name a positive word
    • More often than not, coming when called has to end in something your dog WANTS to do. Too often we call dogs in for things they don’t want to do which devalues their name and recall
  • Get your dog to chase you, don’t chase your dog


We hope you enjoyed this month’s episode of Training Bites on Holistic Pet Radio! Hannah will be back with more awesome tips & tricks in September.

In the meantime, feel free to send her topic requests at with the subject line “Training Bites”.

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