After our Director and our Canine Behavioral Enrichment and Socialization Program Supervisor attended a seminar with Dogs Playing For Life in December 2016 at Glynn County Animal Services, we have our play groups up and running. Allowing dogs to participate in play groups can lead to higher receptivity during standard manners and/or basic obedience training sessions. Without the species appropriate outlet of play groups, many shelter dogs struggle to learn. Playing allows them to burn off mental and physical energy so they can concentrate on learning . For some dog-dog issues, socially healthy dogs can be more effective trainers than humans. Dogs are often excellent teachers for other dogs.
Play groups lower isolation and stress in the kennels . Rather than keeping dogs isolated from one another, play groups allow dogs to interact and bond with other dogs . Since dogs are accustomed to living in groups, this social time with other dogs can minimize behavioral deterioration, speed up behavior modification, and create more peaceful kennels by facilitating a more natural situation. After time to play together dogs generally cohabitate in a kennel more easily. They’ve gotten a chance to meet their “neighbors”, which removes some of the novelty and frustration of being kept apart in kennels.