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Easel Animal Rescue League: Play Group Training Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The money was used for one person's tuition for a four-day mentorship for Dogs Playing for Life at the Longmont Humane Society in Colorado.

The knowledge and skills gained at the training allowed the trainer to share the same to some extent with the shelter manager and two other volunteers at the shelter. We see the benefits of the tools that were learned at the training, so we have ordered the following tools: A set of walkie-talkies, two air horns, two Pet Corrector sprays, two Spray Shields, a cattle paddle, and two break sticks. We plan to incorporate a more formal training session on playgroups within safe limits with two or three volunteers upon receiving the above. In the meantime, we have incorporated the skills learned for dog mediation in playgroups multiple times with two dogs, and couple of times with three dogs.

How many pets did this grant help?

We performed playgroups with four dogs at our shelter with the tools we have so far. Upon receiving the required ordered tools, we would be able to adapt the techniques to our current 10 adoptable dogs, with a capacity of about 16 at the shelter.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

This is the first attempt that we had with more than two dogs in the play yard together. We knew that they were balanced enough to get along as a group. We used the tools we have so far (water squirt bottles, shake cans made out of bottles with rocks in them, and Pet Correct spray with compressed air) to manage and interrupt any negative behavior in those dogs during play. This activity helped Legend (first photo); Pippi, the white-and-tan female; and Athena, a brown-and-white female. Since Legend did not respond to the water bottle because he loved to lick the water, the shake can helped him. We clearly observed that Legend and Pippi are able to properly understand other dogs and get more mental stimulation and better exercise, instead of playing on their own without specific corrective actions. We also attempted a two-dog playgroup with Pippi and Dante, who were not used to each other yet, and the shake can worked great to interrupt their negative behavior.

Meet our adoptable dogs currently in training:
1. Legend:
2. Pippi:
3. Athena:

Further Reading