Karen Overall's Protocol for Relaxation

Ever think, I would really like my dog to be able to learn to relax better? How can I help my dog may attention to me?

Then Dr. Karen L. Overall's Protocol for Relaxation just might be a good place to start with your training.  She developed and published the protocol in 1997.  Here is a written description of the protocol and it's uses:  Relaxation Protocol.  I usually practice the protocol with the dog in heel position with a Mat or in front of me if I am working multiple dogs.  There is a 15 day sequence that I typically cycle through at the dogs personal pace.  Once we have mastered Day 1 we move on to Day 2 and so fourth.  I find it most usuful during transition time, when first arriving to new places including dog classes or the veterinarian and right before guests arrive.  My dogs will then settle right in and relax. almost a reset mode.  This is very useful for dogs that are easily distracted, nervous, or fearful.  Here are the mp3 files, they can be helpful for performing the protocol in various places in your home so you aren't trying to read off a piece of paper at the same time.  There is a new version and an original version, I personally prefer the original version.  

Here is a video demonstrating what this protocol should look like at Day 1.  This video is just meant to give you an idea what the protocol should look like, please refer back to Karen Overalls Protocol for Relaxation and follow along.  This video is the "new" relaxation protocol Day 1 practiced with "sit" in heel position.  There are some noise distractions in the background (cats, whiniing dogs in the other room, and loud supervised toddlers).  So first timers, I would recommend starting this protocol in as quiet an area as possible.  The video also demonstrates what to do if your dog gets up or breaks position. Remember this exercise is supposed to help your dog settle, so using as little contact as possible is best.