Do you remember the last time you had to walk across a wet floor? Maybe coming indoors from a rain storm? It took some effort on your part to remain upright! The slick floor threw off your center of gravity and caused your body to compensate to regain balance. All your muscles had to engage in order for you to not fall. This type of balance and coordination is just as important for our puppies. They are not born with an innate awareness of each limb. They are often times uncoordinated and clumsy when walking or running. This is because the muscles and nerves haven’t yet begun to sync up and work together. By practicing movements that engage our puppy’s muscles and make nerual connections, we are helping them to build a body and brain connection that goes a long way in helping to prevent injury and creating a healthy body that lasts a lifetime.

Have you been doing your warm ups? Do you notice a difference in your puppy’s focus and how quickly they are learning? Drop into the Facebook group and share your experience. We want to know how it’s going and if you need help!

In this lesson we are going to tackle more of an advanced movement with paws off. While it may look very easy, be sure to give your puppy adequate time to become used to performing it. This is one that takes a bit more confidence to execute simply because of the down hill angle and the fact that there’s a lot of muscle compensation happening in the abdominals and hind limbs. Both of these strengths take time to build. Don’t stress if your puppy doesn’t get it right off the bat. Working on a no skid surface is essential for this movement. We don’t want puppy to have any question as to wether they are going to be able to hold on. Paws off is going to help your puppy become more balanced and coordinated as well as building body strength all over. While most of her weight will be placed on the front limbs, the abdominals and rear end muscles are still working to stabilize and balance her body.

Take this one slowly guys. I only want you to practice it once a day and maybe even every other day IF your puppy is telling you they need the extra time to process. Remember, this work out is just as much mental as physical. Do only 2-3 reps per session. Look for and reward proper alignment. Help your pup into position if needed.