Forging a Strong Relationship with Your Best Friend

Excited to go!

Baxter and Winston excited to go!

In todays busy world it is easy to get caught up in your life and forget to spend quality time with your canine best friend. There are many daily activities that will help to forge a better relationship with your canine companion. In this post we will explore several ways that you and your best friend can enhance your natural bond.

Walking, hiking, and running with your best friend are the most obvious ways that you can spend more quality time with your dog. A daily walk or run around the neighborhood can be spiced up with special trips to new and exciting places. There are so many beautiful destinations for you and your best friend here in Asheville. Be sure to check the rules of the places that you plan on visiting so that you are best prepared for your excursion. For dogs that are not off leash trained I like to use a 20-30 foot long leash to give a better sense of freedom. For trips into the back country, consider teaching your dog to carry a weight appropriate dog backpack and be sure to carry a canine first aid kit.

Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever Tully having some fun retrieving on his long line.

If you have a highly active dog, agility and obstacle course training may be just the outlet that will allow your best friend to get all of that extra energy out. Agility training will teach your dog to focus on the course and to your commands. This allows your dog to use both their mind and body at the same time which can tire out even the most energetic canine. It is incredibly fun and exciting to train your dog to weave and climb through one of these amazing courses.


Belgian Malinois Barry Kabler, PH1,CGC clears a 5 foot fence obstacle. A well trained canine companion adds so much to our experience.

Bike riding with your best buddy can also be a safe and fun activity for you and your dog. So that your dog does not accidentally pull you over it is essential to use a canine bike riding device like The Springer. The Springer has a large coiled spring that allows your dog to pull with out pulling over you and your bike. Be sure to spend most of your time with your dog trotting and not at a full run. Be careful in the heat of the Summer as asphalt can become very hot and can burn your dogs pads. Teach your dog to use The Springer by walking your bike at first and once you start riding you can build up your dogs endurance slowly over several weeks. We offer a bike riding workshop if you need help introducing your dog to bike riding as a new activity!

German Shepherds love to bike

German Shepherd Mijo learning to ride safely during a Kabler Bike Riding Workshop.

Swimming with your best friend will get both of you out of town and out to some beautiful spots here in Western North Carolina. Most dogs will naturally learn to swim on their own but if your dog shows hesitation you can teach them to swim. Start in shallow water and over several trips build up your dogs confidence to venture into deeper water. I like to cross small shallow streams and encourage my dog to cross with me. Avoid fast moving water and don’t progress too quickly. Elder dogs who already know how to swim can also be good teachers for your dog. You can support your dog with one arm under their belly and use the other arm above and across their front paws to make sure that they don’t bring them up out of the water when learning to swim. Be sure to keep each experience positive and fun until your dog is swimming like a champ.

Puppy swimming

Belgian Malinois pup Storm learning to water retrieve. Most breeds, love to swim as long as they are introduced to water early and in the right way.

Obedience training will give you and your best friend the communication skills that will allow you both to have the freedom to go almost anywhere. Obedience training provides your dog with mental stimulation and teaches them to look towards you for leadership and guidance. Dogs who feel that they are part of a pack with a strong leader  suffer from less anxiety and are more confident out in the world. Teaching your best friend to respond to the five basic commands of Heel, Sit, Down, Stay and Come no matter where you are or what is going on around you will allow you and your best friend to safely conquer the world together.

Have fun out there and happy training!

Advanced Group Training

Advanced group training is a big part of finishing your dog’s on and off leash training programs here at Kabler School.

David Kabler has been training dogs since he was a boy and has been a Certified Master Trainer since 1995. David is available for lessons in Asheville, NC. Call today or click on Scheduling to book you and your dogs free consultation. David will evaluate your dogs personality and training needs. (828) 337-5792