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Canine Cohesion: How One Woman is Bringing Dogs and Their Owners Closer Together

We don’t know about you, but our favourite people to hang out with aren’t technically people; they’re our dogs.

There’s something deeply special about spending quality time with a four-legged friend and we’ve talked before about the importance of a close bond, both in terms of the benefits from training and for living harmoniously.

But bonds take time and effort to develop – and it isn’t always easy.

Zoe Gladwin runs Canine Cohesion – a company that specialises in helping owners and their dogs build a stronger relationship. 

At Tug-E-Nuff Dog Gear, we want everyone and every dog to experience that special closeness – and we know how much of a difference great toys can make – so we recently donated a selection of our favourite products to be used in her sessions.

We also picked her brains for tips on taking your relationship with your dog to the next level.

Here’s what Zoe had to say…

‘For both you and your dog to share your lives together happily, and for you both to get what you want from your relationship, a good bond and understanding of each other is crucial,’ Zoe says.

‘I have always been fascinated by dogs. They are so complex yet so willing to trust and to love. Dogs are an absolute joy to spend time with.

‘After learning the unspoken language of dogs through my work as a dog photographer and from my own experience, I wanted to help others develop a stronger relationship with their four legged friends. 

‘My goal is to show how you can use that deeper level of understanding and communication to improve both training and day-to-day life.’

So, what happens in a Canine Cohesion session?

Zoe says: ‘We focus on many different elements of the relationship you share with your dog - everything from body language, training, enrichment and your vocal cues to simply sharing each other’s company in a positive way. 

‘Ultimately the goal is to create a level of understanding in which you and your dog become united in a holistic understanding of each other.

‘It can be as simple as using reward based training to the understanding the complexities of how the slightest change in your body language can impact your dog.’ 

How important is play and the use of toys?

‘Play time with the right type of toys is essential,’ says Zoe.

‘Dogs are often discouraged in their home life, sometimes for good reason, not to chew, tug or bite onto things. The thing is, these behaviours come naturally to dogs. Providing your dog with a toy that you actively use to encourage them to let out those natural behaviours leaves for a happy owner and dog!

‘Tapping into your dog’s senses is a really effective way to build your bond with your dog – and that’s where Tug-E-Nuff toys come in.

From the texture and smell, to the sound they make, the toys offer something for every type of dog and engage all the senses. Plus, when you find a toy that your dog truly loves, it’s a huge asset to be used in training as a reward and during daily play for bond building.’

Zoe’s top tips for anyone who feels their bond needs a bit of work…

  • Focus on what you and your dog enjoy. Training can be tough sometimes, but if it’s seen as a chore, you may not gain the results you require. Working on your bond is a continuous daily activity so if you can both enjoy the process then you are much more likely to succeed.
  • Try not to let any mishaps get you down or frustrated. Think of your communication with your dog as similar to that of you and someone else trying to have a conversation when you speak two different languages. Sometimes things will be misunderstood - but if taken slowly and patiently you will both begin to understand!
  • Be patient. It will take time, but there isn't anything quite like being able to communicate with your dog without talking! It’s worth the effort.

Get our FREE e-book on boosting your bond and check out our range of toys specially selected toys for helping you build on your relationship here.

To find out more about Zoe’s Canine Cohesion sessions, visit her website or check out her Facebook page.

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