Search And Rescue Saturday — Engagement

by Mr. Taleteller on

After last week’s post, the Chief Editor asked me if I had ever blogged about what engagement is.  She stated that I had brought it up in last week’s post but did not explain it.  After a brief look back at some older posts I was not able to find a blog post about engagement.  So this week, I will make a small attempt to explain this thing called engagement.


K-9 Aries engaged during a healing exercise.

I thought it would be interesting to ask a few K-9 handlers I know what they would define engagement as.  Outside of one indicating that engagement is a mistake.  I explained that he was most likely thinking of the non K-9 definition.  But most of the handlers stated that if a dog was engaged they were paying attention and being active in their training.  Many training books will read something to the effect of the dog is actively participating in the training.

K9 Engaged

K-9 Engaged with Handler and not surroundings

Engagement is natural for dogs.  It’s a lot like playing.  Does the dog want to continue playing tug after it wins the toy from the  handler?  That would be engagement at a basic level.  An interaction between K-9 and handler.  Without engagement the dog may become less interested in the training and will begin to think that the environment around it is more interesting.



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2 Responses to "Search And Rescue Saturday — Engagement"
  1. Sue Dyer says:

    It’s good that the dogs can be engaged with the handler, but when necessary they can be engaged with finding someone.

    Hope you have a nice weekend. Sue, Polly &Honey

  2. Vicky says:

    Sounds like engagement is very important to training. It is also important in the human world when we are with another person – we need to be present with the one we are with.

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