Recall -Coming when called

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Recall – Coming when called
There are many reasons for calling your dog. Come to eat, to play, to go to bed or simply to be loved. However, loving your dog means that you will protect him from harm. Stopping him from getting into danger and calling him away from it are good reasons why you should train the recall command. It will allow you to give him more freedom, more room for exercise and more importantly you can go walking off leash.
The two most important things you must teach your dog is a reliable Sit-stay and to come when called (also known as a recall). Both can save your dog’s life. If your dog will not remain sitting when told to do so or have a reliable recall then you cannot let him off leash in an unprotected area- ever. Quanto is allowed to walk at his pace on the sidewalk and on the command “Sit” will wait for permission to continue again or to re-join me.
If you work hard to achieve a reliable recall with your dog you will have ten years or more to love him, but if you can’t trust that your dog will come and be controllable, you face a life-time of anxiety and always having to be on high alert .
For the purpose of this article the training of a reliable recall will be discussed. Read the rest of this entry »

The First Two Weeks With Your New Dog

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The First Two Weeks with Your New Dog Open Paw’s Guide

Congratulations on the new addition to your family! With a little work, some planning, and forethought, your new dog will be an effortless, well-behaved companion for years to come. It is important to recognize that first impressions are lasting ones and habits begin to develop from day one. Be sure to instil good manners and habits from the first day you bring your new puppy or dog home. Remember, good habits are as hard to break as bad ones. If you follow these simple guidelines, your dog’s transition into your home will be a piece of cake for both you and your new best friend. Read the rest of this entry »

Puppy Cuddles

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kissPuppy Cuddles
Puppies are the most adorable creatures ever, right? That’s why you could not stop cuddling your new puppy. You petted him, stroked and kissed his warm little body. You just had to pick him up, hug him close to you and you rubbed your nose in his fur before putting him down. I just love how puppies smell when you press your face close to their bodies.
Puppies are little fun creatures and they enjoy the cuddling and attention they get from you just as much as you love them. That is why they bond with their owners and in turn learn to adore the ones who showed them so much affection. Put a puppy down and walk away and it will come running after you. You can hug, kiss and touch your puppy everywhere any of the time.
During a puppy’s lifetime it comes into contact with its veterinarian, groomer, trainer, visitors, pet sitters and all who will have a role to play in caring for your precious puppy that is growing fast and will not know these people. It is your job then to get puppy comfortable early on to accept human touch and also from strangers at times.
Desensitising a puppy as early as possible prepares him for a lifetime of low-stress handling. Read the rest of this entry »

Obedience Training for Pups and Young Dogs

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Scamp

Scamp

Obedience Training for Puppies and Young Adults
Owners of medium and large breed pups and young dogs who want to do obedience training with them face a dilemma. On the one hand they want their dog to obey their commands but on the other hand they have a dog that has been running free of any restrictions since birth and has not been forbidden much. These young dogs arrive at dog training clubs and clearly do not like the idea of restraints being put on their behaviour. They do not like to be made to sit still in a special place and/or position. One sees it all the time. Read the rest of this entry »

A Puppy’s Farewell

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A Puppy’s Farewell
“You got tired of me and took me to the shelter. They were overcrowded and I
drew an unlucky number. I am in a black plastic bag in a landfill now. Some
other puppy will get the barely used leash you left. My collar was dirty and
too small, but the lady took it off before she sent me to the Rainbow Bridge.

Would I still be at home if I hadn’t chewed your shoe? I didn’t know what
it was, but it was leather, and it was on the floor. I was just playing. You
forgot to get puppy toys. Would I still be at home if I had been house broken?
Rubbing my nose in what I did only made me ashamed that I had to go at all.

There are books and obedience teachers that would have taught
you how to teach me to go to the door. Would I still be at home if I hadn’t
brought fleas into the house? Without anti-flea medicine, I couldn’t get
them off of me after you left me in the yard for days.

Would I still be at home if I hadn’t barked? I was only saying,
“I’m scared, I’m lonely, I’m here, I’m here! I want to be your best friend.”
Would I still be at home if I had made you happy? Hitting me didn’t make
me learn how. Would I still be at home if you had taken the time to care
for me and to teach manners to me?

You didn’t pay attention to me after the first week or so, but I spent all
my time waiting for you to love me. I died today.

 

Love,
Your Puppy

Anon

Dogs and Food

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Dogs and Food
Treats in Training

If it is true that “Food is to a dog like money is to people” then it is silly not to make use of food treats in our dog training exercises. From experience we know that food treats can be used very effectively as a lure in puppy and novice dog training when we want to teach them the meaning of words and their hand signals. To capture a sitting position we simply allow a pup a brief smell on a treat before moving it over the nose and head and you instantly have him sitting so that you can give that position a name, “Sit.” Read the rest of this entry »

Why Obedience Train your Dog

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Why Obedience Train your Dog?

There is a saying, “If a dog is old enough to go to a home, it is old enough to learn.” When puppy arrives on your doorstep he can already do lots of things. He knows how to sit, stand and lie down, run, jump and bark and also how to eliminate amongst others. This he can do without our help. Our task then is to teach him to do those things and more, on command. When I say so! We also need to teach him the rules and routines of our home – what is allowed and what is not allowed. Read the rest of this entry »

Temperament

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Temperament

gsdIMAGE_9A dog’s temperament is usually indicated by his behaviour towards people and other dogs. It can also refer to a dog’s steadiness and stability, his energy, alertness, loyalty and affection. It goes without saying that a well behaved dog with a sound temperament is a pleasure to live with. However, depending on how it was treated in the past, it can have a tendency to be aggressive towards people, have a fear of people, fear dogs or fight with dogs, be shy or hyperactive and you can have a lifetime of struggle with such a dog. Read the rest of this entry »

Before Getting a Dog

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10 Important Topics to Discuss Before Getting a Dog

Dogs

To raise a well-trained dog, you need a great plan. The best ones include communicating with everyone in your family about the basic expectations you have of your dog, the goals you hope to achieve, and the strategies you’re ready to use to get there. In short, you need to talk honestly and openly about what to expect from your dog and how you are going to train them – all BEFORE you get your dog.

Having a dog is a lifetime commitment. That’s why it is important to understand what’s really involved with having one before you make that choice. Take a few minutes to consider what you want from your new dog and how you are going to introduce the dog in your home. Read the rest of this entry »

Play

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Play

“Playtime provides perhaps the perfect opportunity to combine fun with learning: there is no greater pleasure.” Jan Fennel. The Dog Listener.

Play PoloCan you ever resist your dog meeting you in the morning with a “toy” in the mouth and that begging expression on the face? This is how Polo often meets me and tells me she wants to play and she wants it “now.” During puppyhood my dogs start their day playing with a ball or a tug before feeding. So, in a way I am to blame for creating the love for play in my dogs. I invite my dogs to play with me and they invite me back.

All dogs learn to become dogs through play with their littermates and later with some others at puppy school. We see games of strength: Tug-of-War, Rough-and-tumble etc. Possession: Bury the bone, steal the ball, hide the hoof etc. Chase: Running away with the ball or stick. Come and get it etc. Killing: Shake the rag, stick, slipper etc. All these games help prepare dogs to establish pack dominance as well as developing hunting and killing skills. When they win an object it becomes a trophy that is carried to its kennel or bed. We think it is fun to see them pounce and hear them growl while playing and shaking toys yet for some breeds we need to be more aware about who initiates games and who is allowed to win. It could determine his position in the human pack with problems to follow. Read the rest of this entry »

Puppies and Parvo

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Puppies and Parvo

Puppies 001Finding out that your puppy has contracted Canine Parvo Virus is the worst news a pet owner can face. Puppies less than 4 months old and dogs that have not been vaccinated against the virus are at increased risk for infection. That is why we do not start puppy classes unless a puppy has had at least its second jabs against Parvo – usually around ten (10) weeks of age. Read the rest of this entry »

How Puppies Develop

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How Puppies Develop

SONY DSC

Puppies are born about two months after conception – 58 to 63 days on average – and are quite helpless little beings that do not look much like a dog. Because the gestation period is so short, many of their critical organs, including the brain, are not fully formed and need more time to develop. That is why puppies are born functionally blind (their eyelids are tightly closed) and deaf (their ear canals are closed). Read the rest of this entry »

Getting Puppy used to a Leash

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The sooner a puppy is introduced to a collar and a leash, the easier its acceptance. Many responsible breeders have their puppies leash trained by the time they are adopted. Starting out with a paper or woollen collar to get used to and then a light line for a leash before they are guided with treats to start walking on leash at about eight or nine weeks of age.

However, most puppies leave for their new or forever homes without a collar and a leash and it is up to the new owners to decide when training should start and what form it should take.   Some owners allow their puppies to run free without a collar for a long period and only want to start leash training when they cannot control their puppy. Read the rest of this entry »

Excitement Urination in a Puppy

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Excitement Urination in a Puppy

When puppies are born they cannot eliminate without some physical stimulation from their mother. They soon learn to control the passing of urine and faeces and not to soil the den or themselves. As dogs grow up, urine in particular, is used as an important communication method. Marking can be very complex but typically urine markings are to indicate territory and dominance. Read the rest of this entry »

Puppy comes home

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Puppy Comes Home

The decision to adopt a puppy is without a doubt a very exciting happening in most households.  Much time is usually
spent deciding on the right dog, breed, size, male or female, colour and whether from a breeder or a rescue facility and more. The family then cannot wait for the great day to arrive. They often forget that it is very important to use the waiting period to prepare for the homecoming and to read about puppy care. Puppies are brought into our world and therefore it remains our responsibility to obtain the knowledge to make this transition smooth and successful.

It is advisable to visit the puppy during the interim period to learn as much as possible from the keeper or breeder. Information about the food, feeding routine, handling and what it has been taught will help the puppy to settle quicker in its new home. It is recommended to leave the puppy with its mother and siblings for as long as possible. Usually around eight or nine weeks of age is the ideal period because they learn a lot from their mother and by playing with other puppies.
Read the rest of this entry »

Bite Inhibition

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Bite Inhibition

“Without a doubt, teaching bite inhibition is the single most important item on the educational agenda of any pup.” Dr Ian Dunbar.

Puppies don’t have thumbs, they cannot hold things, they only have a mouth for this purpose and so biting is normal, natural, and necessary puppy behaviour. Play-biting is the way in which puppies learn to control the strength of their bites. Puppies that do not mouth or learn bite inhibition are more likely to cause serious damage as adults when they playfully interact with the family, visitors or other dogs.

A dog that has developed bite inhibition my get involved in many dog fights but none of his opponents will be bleeding or need veterinary help.

Teaching bite inhibition is a double process: Firstly, to inhibit the force of the bite and secondly, to reduce the frequency of puppy mouthing. Ideally these two should be taught at the same time. Read the rest of this entry »

The Stand

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The Stand

The average dog has little difficulty in learning the sit and down commands but can easily become confused with an order to stand. This is particularly true if the Stand is not introduced at a fairly young age. Because the Stand is taught from the sit, it should only be introduced when a puppy is happy and confident in the sit and down. Read the rest of this entry »

Car sickness/nervousness

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In-Car Sickness/Nervousness

Causes & Symptoms
Behaviourists believe that car sickness in dogs is predominantly stress related and not motion related. Anxiety, most often caused by the trauma experienced by a puppy when it was taken away from all that to him was safe and familiar, may be a major cause of this condition.  He is suddenly taken away from his mother and litter mates and is confined in a car with new smells, noise, unfamiliar people and strange movements. Many pups become so distressed during this first car trip that they are often physically ill before they arrive at their new homes.

It could also be that the ear structures used for balance are not yet fully developed, in which case there is a good chance that he will outgrow the car sickness around 7 – 8 months of age. However, getting sick each trip can be so traumatic for a pup that he never outgrows his fear of car travel. He begins not only to avoid the car but actually hates being inside.

Typical behaviours of a dog that has a car phobia are calming signals (licking of the lips, yawning, panting or sitting/lying down) as you attempt to bring the dog near to the car and restlessness and whining once he/she is inside the car. Dogs that are severely affected may drool, vomit and even release their bowls when inside a moving vehicle. Read the rest of this entry »

Puppy’s First Year

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Puppy’s First Year

The most important year of its entire life.

Bringing a puppy into your home is much like bringing a new baby into your home. It becomes your responsibility not only to
look after its physical needs but also to teach good manners, socially acceptable behaviour and to set limits. However, since puppies are beautiful, playful and fun it is very often forgotten that the first year of a puppy’s life is the most important period in its entire life and the ideal opportunity to establish good habits that will be hard to break. If it is old enough to come home it is old enough to start learning.

We need to start young as the puppy passes through the different veryset phases of development.

During the Teething stage from 2 – 4 months of age a puppy is very dependent on its owner and will come when called and will willingly stay with him or her. A proper foundation needs to be set to maintain its bond with the owners. Getting along with the family and strangers is more important than learning to “sit” or “stay.” Dogs that do not get on with people end at rescue places!!! Read the rest of this entry »

Training Basics

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Training Basics.

We do not have to teach dogs to sit, lie down or stand because they already know how to do it. What we do teach them is English as a 2nd language and to want to sit or lie down, reliably when we ask for it.

Food is used as a reward for performing a command and hand signals are used instead of words. The dog learns that he only gets rewarded if he sits when told to do so. Read the rest of this entry »




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