Dog dance, the ultimate partnership of dog and handler
It is difficult to explain exactly what ‘dog dance’ is. The idea conjures up a picture of a person holding the front paws of their dog and dancing around the room, like a ballroom dance. Well, that is definitely not what it is! The concept is based on the fact that no physical contact occurs between dog and handler but that the dog chooses to complete exercises and movements to music in order to earn a reward. It can be compared to a dressage performance of horse and rider. During a dog dance lesson we teach the dog a number of exercises and movements that can be carried out in sequence to music. When the dog performs the exercise and movements it looks like a sort of dance, therefore the sport, dog dance!
Dog dance is based on the intensive teamwork of handler and dog together in order to ensure that the dog completes the exercises and movements precisely, on command and in time with the handler so that is looks like an integrated dance. The type of exercises and movements that the dog will be taught include: a slalom between the legs, a circle around the handler, a jump over an arm of leg, a crawling movement etc. The possibilities are endless with the enjoyment of handler and dog as the most important factor!
Which training methods are used to train the dog?
A dog is only prepared to carry out difficult movements and exercises in sequence when he is enjoying himself. It is therefore important to ensure that his actions are rewarded with lots of praise and a treat that he really loves. That can be an edible dog treat or a toy, whatever works for your dog. Praise and patience, these are the key success factors for dog dance!
Can all dogs learn dog dance?
Every fit and healthy dog that loves treats is able to learn the exercises and movements but that doesn’t mean that it is then a dog dance. As handler you also need to enjoy creating a routine to music with your dog. This sport does not limit your creativity so you are free to choose which movements and exercises you want to include in your routine and can therefore tailor it to suit the ability of your dog and what he enjoys the most. Every dog is different but there are always exercises and movements possible that match the ability of your dog and your own style.