Welcome to this resource on running shelter and rescue dog playgroups. This resource is designed to make it easy to hit the ground running and start integrating efficient, well-run playgroups into routine daily care of dogs who are still searching for their forever homes.
What you’ll find here are quick reference guides on the nuts and bolts of running playgroups, with many videos and pictures to illustrate key concepts and methods.
These materials have been developed with a wide variety of shelters and rescues in mind, and throughout the guidelines there will be choices to make depending on the level of comfort and expertise available on your staff. The next phase of this project will provide additional training materials for staff and volunteers.
The Pet Rescue Resource is committed to providing aversives-free training practices and play management. Aversives should only be used when necessary to break up a fight already in-progress. Aversives are not used to teach social skills or improve play. Instead, we show you how to manage or intervene in play using methods that do not cause fear or pain.
The other focus of the Pet Rescue Resource is recognizing the truly limited time and resources available to most shelter and rescue organizations. We have provided best practices for getting as many dogs as enjoy social interaction with their own kind, out to play with other dogs, in as efficient a manner as possible.