Big Air!

When it comes to dog training, attitude is everything. Barton Ramsey of Southern Oak Kennels, in Saltillo, Mississippi, keeps the attitude high with his Labrador retriever “Red” by doing fun water marks coupled with pattern blinds and handling drills. Red has a genuine love for the water, so getting out in the rain, as he did on this March day, doesn’t bother him one bit. To increase a dog’s love for water, Ramsey recommends paying close attention to the dog’s attitude when doing water work. Body language will tell you what you need to know. Never train a dog in water that’s cold, especially when the air temperature is also cold. And always reward a dog for making the right decision, especially when it comes to entering and re-entering the water. While it’s not always desirable for a dog to make a huge leaping water entry—especially in unfamiliar places where there could be hidden dangers—when the time and place are right, it sure makes for a spectacular show. 

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dog on SSM cover

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