Eye contact is one of the first things that I teach to my own dogs and is a basic behavior that we teach to all of our students at my training school, AutumnGold.
In our training classes, we introduce eye contact very early because it is easy to teach and provides very rapid and positive results to owners who are often frustrated with their young and exuberant dog’s lack of attention. It is also a great method for teaching targeting and timing skills.
Really, what’s not to like?
Well, until recently, I thought, nothing at all. However, a newly published study motivated me to think a bit more deeply about the behaviors that we train our dogs to do and how they may, however subtlety, influence our dogs’ social lives. It has to do with tests of social cognition – specifically how…
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