Dog-training group celebrates 10 years

| 04/11/2016
CNS Local Life

Kenneth Morgan (centre) leads a training session at Public Beach

(CNS Local Life): The dogs will be out on Sunday, 6 November as volunteers celebrate 10 years of bringing Cayman Islands Humane Society pooches for a break on the beach. The beach-training programme gives shelter dogs a chance to frolic in the sand and sea – as well as learn basic commands. Launched in 2006, the programme is spearheaded by professional dog trainer and long-time Humane Society volunteer Kenneth Morgan.

“The idea behind beach training is not only to give dogs a break from the shelter but to teach them basic obedience skills,” he said.

The goal is to make shelter dogs more adoptable, helping with the transition to a new home. “It’s going to be easier for the owner to handle the dog,” Morgan explained.

A well-behaved dog is much less likely to be returned to the shelter, he added.

The weekly Sunday sessions teach the canines how to walk on a leash, heel, sit, come, stay and lie down. Volunteers meet at 11am at Public Beach and spend about an hour training.

In between the short training sessions, volunteers can take the pooch for a swim or a walk on the beach.

“It’s a great way to socialise the dogs,” Morgan said. “It’s a fun outing for both the dogs and volunteers.”

He has been training dogs for more than 30 years, and operates Cayman Canine Training Services, which offers group and one-on-one obedience and behavioural training as well as dog sitting, boarding and dog-walking services.

Hundreds of dogs – and volunteers – have been through the beach-training programme over the past decade, with some lucky pooches even finding their forever homes with their handlers.

“It’s rewarding to see how the dogs respond to the training,” Morgan said. “Within six weeks they are able to follow basic commands and are much better behaved. You can see the transformation in a matter of weeks.”

On 6 November, volunteers will be having a special anniversary training session from 11am to 12pm, following by refreshments until 2pm.

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