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Game On!
by Landess Witmer PetFolio Publisher
Apr 04, 2012 | 1808 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Courtesy Illustrations/ Turi Everett
Courtesy Illustrations/ Turi Everett

Now more than ever, pet shelters nationwide are struggling with overcrowding. Communities, in return, need to find a way to ensure that pets stay in the homes they have. In Reno, one such pet trainer is busy showing owners how to tell their pets they want to play.

“Play is fun but also play is powerful stuff,” said local dog trainer and pet rescuer PJ Wangsness of Dog Training by PJ. In fact, playing with your pet will improve your relationship as well as improve your pet’s responsiveness. The dog-human social contract is all about the relationship. By engaging your animal, you enrich your pet’s life as well as your own.

Wangsness also teaches owners how to play puppy style. She wants to help pets and owners bond for life.

“Playing with your pet has a profound influence on your relationship,” Wangsness told me. Not only can owners develop some charming tricks and games to wow friends, owners will learn more about their animals.

“The act of playing together increases your dog’s development and retention skills and provides superb mental and physical exercise,” Wangsness said. “And, developing tricks together is a fun way to refine your dog’s abilities in both obedience and manners.”

An owner who can play with their pet understands what their animal likes and dislikes. It is like you tune into your animal to have fun. This type of relationship is rewarding to animal as well as human.

Wangsness further explained: “If you’d like a happier, more responsive dog and a better relationship, then interact with your pet.”

Basic obedience is important, of course, but the need to play will perhaps go even further toward forging a strong bond with a pet.

Pets that have fulfilled lives interact appropriately with their families, have a purpose and can rest assured their homes are forever. Playing and spending quality time together with your animal will create a lifelong relationship.

Dog Training by PJ in Reno offers Puppy Kindergarten 101, Fun with Tricks, and many other obedience classes, including sessions for felines. For more information, visit

Read more about local pet clubs and current animal events in “A World Unleashed,” at
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Game On! by Landess Witmer PetFolio Publisher

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