Five Summer Hazards for Your Dog

Each season contains hazards for our pets.  Here are five hazards to guard against this summer.
1) Heat stroke.  Never leave a dog in the car, even for “just a minute.”  Temperatures can soar in minutes in the hot sun.  Even leaving a car window open is not adequate to save the dog.  By the same token, make sure that outside…

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Introducing a New Dog to Your Resident Dog

You have gotten a new dog and are ready to take it home.  How will your resident dog view the newcomer?  The way you introduce them may mean the difference between life long love or life long hate.
First, introducing two dogs together requires two people, one for each dog.  It also requires a neutral location such as a park or…

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How to housebreak your puppy

Housebreaking your puppy is one of the most onerous tasks facing most puppy owners.  It needn’t be so difficult, though, if you take advantage of the puppy’s natural preference for a routine.  You will have to put in some work and make sure you are consistent in your training.
The first thing to understand is that puppies have small bladders so…

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Tips for traveling with your dog

Some dogs like to travel and some dogs do not enjoy it at all.  However, it is necessary sometimes whether your dog likes it or not.  Here are some tips to make the traveling experience as positive for both you and your dog as possible.
1)  Invest in a seatbelt for your dog.  They are available from most pet supply houses. …

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Why it is important to spay your female dog

It is important to spay your female dog before her first heat or as soon as you acquire her, if she if older.  There are many myths about spaying dogs and many benefits to doing so.
First, we will discuss the benefits.  When a dog is spayed, her uterus and ovaries are removed.  This totally eliminates the possibility of uterine or…

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Why you should neuter your dog

Neutering your dog is an important part of responsible dog ownership.  There are many good reasons to do so as well as many myths about the process.  This article will explain the importance of neutering and dispel some of the myths about it.
The most important reason to neuter your dog is to prevent unwanted litters of puppies.  One male dog…

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Lyme Disease and Your Dog

Lyme disease is the most common tick borne disease in the United States in dogs.  It was first discovered in humans in an area of Connecticut called Old Lyme in 1975.  It is caused by a spirochete (bacteria) species of the Borrelia burgdorferi group.  Most cases are found in wooded areas in the Northern part of the United States, but…

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Ehrlichia in Dogs

Ehrlichia is a type of bacteria and a tick borne disease in dogs and other animals, including humans.  Ehrlichia causes ehrlichiosis in dogs.  It is primarily transmitted by the brown dog tick.  It can also be transmitted from an infected donor dog to a blood recipient dog.
Ehrlichia bacteria infect the white blood cells.  The severity of the illness and the…

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Internal worm parasites and your dog

When people think of parasites and their dog, most people focus on external parasites such as fleas and ticks.  Dogs also get internal parasites, such as tape worms, hook worms, whip worms, round worms, and heart worms.  This article will explain the facts you need to know about all the worms except heart worms, which are addressed in another article.

Tape…

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Two Tips for Housebreaking Your Puppy

Trouble knowing when you puppy needs to go outside?  Teach the dog to ring a bell hanging from your doorknob when he wants out.  It sounds incredible but really isn’t hard to do.  I use a cowbell because it is loud enough to hear from all over the house.  You can usually find them at feed stores or farm supply…

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Teaching Attention

Sometimes dogs are a lot like teenagers.  You tell them to do something and they roll their eyes.  You can almost hear them say, “Yah, whatever.”  A dog in this state is very difficult to teach anything to.
Fortunately, you can teach your dog to pay attention to you and wait with baited breath for your next command.  All it requires…

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Teaching the Stand for Exam

Are you embarrassed when you go to the veterinarian because your dog squirms and fights and it takes two people to hold him so the vet can examine him?  Is it impossible to cut your dog’s toenails or pull out a sticker because he won’t be still long enough for you to do so?  Teach your dog the Stand for…

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Teaching Your Dog To Retrieve

Teaching your dog to retrieve consists of two steps.  In the first step, you teach the dog to grab a toy and then give it back to you.  In the second step, you teach the dog to go get the toy once it is thrown a few feet from you.  After these two steps are performed well, you can slowly…

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Teaching Your Dog to Sit

Teaching your dog to sit is not hard and is the foundation for all other commands.  Once you teach your dog to sit, you must teach him to stay until you release him.  Otherwise, he will sit and then bounce right back up.
Put your dog on a leash and have him on your left side.  Take a small piece of…

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Teaching a Dog to Down on Command

There are times when you want your dog to lay down and stay out of the way.  For example, when company comes or you are eating.  Teaching the down stay is not hard but does require some persistence.
The easiest way to train your dog to down stay is to start with the dog in a sitting position.  Take a treat…

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Pet Food Recalls and Your Dog

Have your dog food or dog treats been recalled?  Wondering what that really means?  The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) governs the contents of dog food and dog treats.  When a dog food is recalled, it is either because a needed ingredient is not in the food, or something that is not supposed to be in there is present.
The first case,…

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Leptospirosis

Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection caused by several strains of Leptospira bacteria.  It is most common in warm and wet climates and least common in the Southwest, but can cause problems anywhere.
Dogs are at risk when they drink from stagnant water, roam on rural property or in barnyards, or catch rodents and other wild animals.  Leptospirosis is spread by contact…

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Types of Aggression in Dogs

There are several types of aggression in dogs.  Some are easier to understand and treat than others.  It is important to note that if your dog is aggressive, you need to consult a veterinarian or a dog trainer for help.  Do not attempt to work through the aggression by yourself without an expert guiding you.  Aggressive dogs can injure a…

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Fencing Options for your Dog

Robert Frost said, “Good fences make good neighbors.”  They also increase the safety of your dog by protecting him from wandering off and getting lost, hit by a car, or stolen.  There are three main types of fences that are used with dogs today:  electric containment systems, chain link fences, and wooden privacy fences.  Each has advantages and disadvantages.
Electric containment…

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Helping Spot Get Home

We teach human children their name, address, and phone number in case they get lost.  Your dog cannot recite these things, but we can help him get home if he is lost by placing some identification on him.  There are three main types of identification:  tags, tattoos, and microchips.  Each has advantages and disadvantages.
Tags are by far the most common…

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Kennel Cough, The Doggy Common Cold

Kennel cough is a highly contagious disease that causes upper respiratory problems and a deep, persistent cough.  Because it is so contagious, it can sweep through a kennel in a matter of days, hence the name “kennel cough”.  This infection is actually found wherever dogs congregate, such as dog shows, the groomer, veterinarian’s offices, or dog parks.
Dogs with kennel cough…

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Five Winter Hazards for Your Dog

Each season seems like it comes with its’ own hazards for our dogs.  Winter is no exception.  Dogs have to worry about several things in the winter, including the cold, ice, de-icing solutions, car antifreeze, and lack of water.  Each of these poses problems for your dog that are not as prevalent at other times of the year.
The cold is…

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Dental Care and Your Dog

Did you know dogs get cavities?  In fact, dogs get all the same problems with their mouths we do:  cavities, gum disease, abscesses, and bad breath.  Further, in addition to causing pain in their own right, mouth problems can lead to infections, heart problems, and death.
How can you tell if your dog has a problem?  Look inside the dog’s mouth. …

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Why You Need a Reliable Recall and How To Train One

I was out walking in my pasture with my dogs and suddenly saw a skunk.  It was March and they had come out of hibernation to find a mate.  My dogs saw the skunk a fraction of a second after I did.  They started forward, but came to me when I called them rather than chase the skunk.  Could you…

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Removing Skunk Spray From Your Dog

I do not know what it is about skunks that is irresistible to dogs, but there certainly seems to be something.  If there is a skunk anywhere near a dog, you can be sure that the dog will investigate.  More often than not, the dogs ends up getting sprayed.  The oily, smelly spray burns the dogs eyes, nose, and mouth…

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Rabies 101 and Your Dog

Rabies!  The very word is enough to strike fear in most dog owner’s hearts.  Since rabies is fatal to mammals, it is treated very seriously by health authorities and the incidence is low in the United States and Canada.  Other countries have a higher incidence, though, and wild animals lurk in even very urban areas.  It pays to know the…

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Distemper 101

Distemper used to be the scourge of the dog world.  Every dog went through it, with some dying, some suffering brain damage and being destroyed, and some coming through it okay.  One reason trainers used to wait until a dog was eight or nine months old to start training was to see if the dog would come through distemper okay. …

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AKC Pointing Dog Hunt Tests

Want to go hunting?  If you have a pointing dog breed such as Pointers, German Shorthaired Pointers, or Brittany Spaniels, and the dog is registered with the American Kennel Club, you can take your dog to a hunting test and earn titles.  These tests are simulated hunts with birds, blank pistols, and dogs.  Dogs can earn a junior hunter, senior…

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Snake Bites and Your Dog

Snake bites range from clinically insignificant to life threatening and even deadly.  Most snakes are not poisonous.  Even poisonous snakes do not inject venom every time they bite.  The trouble is there is no way for an owner to know if this is a “dry bite” or if the snake shot a full dose of venom into the dog.  For…

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Car Safety and Your Dog

Dogs are wonderful travel companions.  However, just like children, they can do some things that cause problems if not properly restrained and trained.  With a little effort, you and your dog will arrive safely at your destination.
We will start with the problems.  Then we will discuss the solutions to each problem.
Hanging out the window.  First, dogs that hang their heads…

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Disaster Preparedness and Your Pet

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, many states passed laws mandating provisions for dogs and cats in an evacuation. However, owners need to be ready in case of a disaster, too. Here is the information you need to be prepared.
Your dog needs the same things you do to survive an emergency: food, water, shelter, and any medications…

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Parvo 101

Veterinarians dread dealing with a dog who has bloody diarrhea or is throwing up blood. It usually means the dog has parvo, an extremely contagious virus that often kills the dog. Even if it doesn’t kill the dog, it means days on an IV while the dog recovers. The dog must be kept in isolation so it…

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Five Things Every Good Dog Should Know

Dogs enrich our lives immeasurably. However, like children, dogs must be taught how to behave to fit into our world. We have all seen the dog that drags the human down the street, ignores commands, messes everywhere, and generally causes problems where ever it goes. Don’t let your dog be that dog — teach him what he…

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Crates and Crate Training (Part Two)

Crates are used to give dogs a bedroom of their own where they can stay out of trouble. Choosing a crate and some introductory training are covered in Crates and Crate Training Part One. Here is some addition information on using a crate with your dog.
Traveling with the crate. Depending on the size of the crate, you…

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Crates and Crate Training (Part One)

Ever watched a dog try to dig a hole in your floor before settling down for a nap? That is because dogs are den animals. Their instinct is to find a nice protected area to sleep in. That means walls at their back and sides so they only have to defend one approach.
Crate training utilizes this instinct…

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What to do in a Doggy Emergency

If you have a dog, you will eventually have an emergency. Your dog will eat something he isn’t supposed to, get in a fight with something, catch that car he is always chasing, or get very ill. While no one wants to have an emergency, a little preplanning and information can make having one go smoother.
First, your veterinarian’s…

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Vaccinations and Your Dog

Vaccinations can be a controversial topic. Some people do not believe in vaccinating their dogs, some give fewer vaccinations than the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) recommends, and some follow those recommendations completely.
Just as humans get vaccinations against certain diseases when young, it is recommended that puppies get a series of vaccinations against such diseases as adenovirus cough and…

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Pet Insurance

Veterinary medicine has reached the point where almost any treatment available to humans is available to dogs. That is good and bad. Knowing there is something that can be done to help your pet if only you could afford it is worse, in many ways, than knowing there is nothing that can be done. Economic euthanasia is…

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Disclaimer of Liability

Dogs are wonderful creatures who make loving companions when properly treated. They think, they feel, they love. Dogs have personalities that are as different from one another as human personalities are. One thing dogs all have in common is the instinct to survive. That means they will bite given the right circumstances. This is one…

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Diseases to Vaccinate Your Dog Against

Dogs get viruses that can threaten their health as well as make them miserable. Vaccinations exist for many of these illnesses. Vaccination schedules vary and are discussed in a separate article. Here are the diseases for which vaccines exist.

Adenovirus cough is one of the causes of kennel cough. The dog’s trachea and bronchial tubes are inflamed. …

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Five clicker training myths

Clicker training is fast becoming the method of choice when training a dog through positive means. But there are some widespread misunderstandings that could make it hard to know if it’s right for you and your dog. The following are five myths about clicker training, both negative and positive, as well as information you can use to decide if this…

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Why your dog pees in the house

One of the most common problems in house training is a dog that pees in the house or just won’t wait until you take him outside. Even after weeks of patience and practice, some dogs don’t seem to grasp what we think is a simple concept: DON’T GO IN THE HOUSE! If you’ve followed all the steps for house training…

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Vegetarian Diets and Your Dog

You are what you eat. We hear that over and over growing up. Some people have chosen to eat a strictly vegetarian diet, or a vegan one. Many of these people want to feed their pets the same type of diet they eat. The question, then, is can a dog survive on a vegetarian or vegan…

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Markers and motivators in positive training

The two most powerful tools in positive dog training are the marker and motivator. The marker tells your dog that the behavior he offered is correct and the motivator is the reward that follows the marker. With the proper marker and motivators you can train your dog to do almost anything.

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The truth about dog obesity

A recent study by Purina found that people aren’t alone in their struggle with obesity. Over 60% of household pets in the United States are considered overweight. Even more surprising, over half of dog owners with obese dogs think their pets have an ideal body condition. What they don’t realize is how being overweight affects their dogs in the long…

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Train your dog to focus attention

Once of the first and easiest clicker training exercises you should try is to get your dog to pay attention to you. This exercise will teach him to ignore distractions and check in with you wherever he’s at. He’ll have a greater awareness of you as pack leader and it can help when you teach other obedience commands like the…

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The right diet for your senior dog

Once your dog has reached 75% of his expected life span, you should consider a new senior diet to maintain his health. At this stage of a dog’s life, his metabolism slows and he starts to lose some of his energy and verve. Proper nutrition is the best way to compensate for these changes and prevent the onset of…

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Your puppy’s nutrition and diet

The most important time to look after your dog’s diet and nutritional needs is when he’s a puppy. By the time your puppy is two months old he enters a period of extreme development. His skeleton and muscles seem to add bulk over night and he starts to build an effective immune system. These changes require the perfect balance of…

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How to give your dog a bath

Dirt and odors love dogs, which makes learning how to give a dog a bath an essential part of caring for your pet. You may have visions, or past experiences, of your dog tearing through the house half-soaped up and shaking water all over your new furniture. But bath time doesn’t have to be an occasion to dread if you…

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How to brush your dog

Learning how to brush a dog is a simple way to strengthen the bond between you and your pet in addition to the other benefits that come with grooming. Regular grooming sessions keep your dog’s coat clean and healthy and minimize shedding. Consistent dog brushing also allows you to check for cuts, bumps, or other skin problems that may need…

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Basics of dog nutrition

Before you can make an informed decision about what to feed your dog, you should have a basic understanding of dog nutrition. The more you know about the nutrients that are important for your dog’s diet, the easier it’ll be to choose the right food for him.

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First trip to your dog’s groomer

If you plan to take your dog to a professional groomer, there are a few preparations you should make before your first visit. Taking a little extra time to gather all of your dog’s records and introduce him to the grooming process will make the groomer’s job easier and keep your dog stress-free.

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Your dog’s feeding schedule

One of the easiest ways to keep your dog trim and healthy is to feed him on a schedule. When you set regular meal times you make sure your dog gets the proper amount of nutrition each day. And, if you have kids, it’s an easy way to assign them some regular responsibility in caring for the family pet.

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Caring for your dog’s eyes

Routine dog eye care is usually quite simple and can be done everyday. The following are some easy ways to make sure your dog has perfect eyesight well into his old age. You should keep your dog’s eyes free from mucous and crusty buildup by using a damp washcloth or tissue to wipe it away. Avoid dabbing or wiping the eye…

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Your dog’s dental care

Oral disease affects over 80% of dogs by the time they’re three years old, which means a dog dental care program should be a top priority in your regular grooming and health care routine. As with people, gum disease in your dog is painful and can lead to tooth loss as well as kidney, liver, and heart disease. Cleaning your…

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Tips on giving your dog a bath

Giving your dog a bath doesn’t have to be a chore. The following tips will help you introduce your dog to taking baths and deal with some common issues and concerns associated with dog baths. We also have step-by-step instructions on how to give your dog a bath when you’re ready.

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Your dog’s anal glands

One of the lesser known, and unpleasant, aspects of grooming and health care involves the dog anal glands. When a dog passes a stool, pressure is placed on glands located on either side of the anus and they secrete, or express, a fluid along with the stool. Every dog’s secretion has a different odor to identify him, which is one…

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Controlling your dog’s weight

Despite the hundreds of millions of dollars the diet industry spends on advertising each year, maintaining a healthy weight is a simple concept for both you and your dog. If, on average, your dog uses more calories than he takes in, he’ll lose weight. If, however, he uses fewer calories than takes in, he’ll gain weight. So to keep your…

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How to clip a dog’s nails

Clipping dog nails can be intimidating, but it’s an important part of every dog’s health routine. If you prepare him for the experience, learning how to clip your dog’s nails can be a great way to bond with him and build his trust in you.

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Cleaning a dog’s ears

Learning how to clean dog ears is rarely at the top of a dog owner’s to-do list, but it’s an important way to prevent some common health problems. Your dog’s ears are the perfect environment to grow bacteria and yeast, which can lead to serious infections. But, taking time to check your dog’s ears and clean them regularly will keep…

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How to choose a dog groomer

If your dog has a long coat or special grooming needs, you don’t have the time to bath him, or you just want to do something special for him, choosing a dog groomer could be just the ticket. As with choosing any professional to care for your dog, you’ll need to do a little research and leg work to find…

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Adult dog nutrition and choosing a food

Once your puppy has reached adulthood, around twelve to eighteen months depending on the breed, his nutritional needs change. The extra nutrients and calories he used for growth as a puppy are no longer necessary. In fact, the excess nutrients in puppy food could cause obesity in an adult dog. At this stage in his life your dog needs a…

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Why obedience training

Some people see dog obedience training as cruel, as if it will take away their dog’s spirit. However, true obedience training allows you to communicate with your dog to build a relationship of trust and respect. Good trainers use commands to bring out the best in their dogs. Far from being a barbaric tool, training bridges the gap between human…

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Why crate train your dog

Some people consider crate training a dog to be mean or barbaric. However, if you take the time to see the crate from your dog’s perspective, you’ll find that crate training fulfills his innate desire for a safe place to call his own. Dogs are den animals. They want a secure, sheltered area to rest. If you’ve ever found your…

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Where, when, and how to train your dog

If you structure obedience training sessions to be short, simple, and positive, you and your dog will both look forward to working on the next big trick. Here are some tips on where, when, and what to train during a session.

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What is puppy socialization?

A socialized puppy is one that has been introduced to as many different sights, sounds, people, and situations as possible during his first few months of life (from approximately 3-4 weeks to 14 weeks of age). If a puppy isn’t properly socialized, as an adult dog he may react with fear or aggression toward those things he’s never seen or…

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How to paper train a puppy or dog

Housebreaking a new puppy or dog can seem like a daunting task, particularly if you live in a high-rise apartment building or don’t have ready access to an outdoor area. In these situations, paper training can be a useful way to house train your dog until he can hold himself long enough to make trips outside less frequent.

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Dog training the positive way

There are generally two approaches to obedience training: positive dog training, also called lure/reward training, and force/punishment. In positive training, the emphasis is on rewarding the dog for correct behavior. Only later in the training process are reprimands used to ensure the dog understands a command. This is the opposite of the force/punishment school of thought where the focus is…

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Leash training a puppy

A leash and collar are invaluable training tools that allow you to communicate with your puppy, they keep him safe and under your control, and most states require them when you take him to public places. You can begin leash training puppy within the first few days after he arrives home starting with the gentle introduction of a collar and…

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Dog behavior and training

Your dog may like to watch TV with you, but he’s a wild animal at heart. He has many of the same instincts and drives that his ancestors did. With a little practice you can learn to use these behaviors to your advantage when you train your dog. Two of the most important dog behaviors for training are…

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How to housebreak a puppy

Many owners dread housebreaking their puppy, but with a little knowledge it can be relatively painless. You can anticipate your puppy’s needs and reduce the chance of accidents with a simple schedule and a watchful eye.

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How to housebreak a dog

The key to housebreaking your dog is to make it as easy as possible for him to succeed. If you schedule all of his activities and look for behavior that signals he needs to go out, you minimize the chance that an accident will occur and your dog will grow more confident as a result.

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Tips on rewarding your dog

The following dog training tips will help you understand when and how to reward your dog to make obedience exercises as effective as possible. Your dog will learn quicker if you reward him at the precise moment he performs the desired action. When teaching the sit command, for instance…

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Basic training commands

Dog owners often misunderstand the reason for, and necessity of, basic training commands. First-time owners frequently approach commands as “tricks” rather than as tools to communicate with their dogs. Others skip formal obedience training altogether because they believe it takes too much time or demeans their dog. Teaching your dog training commands should be an essential part of your interactions…

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How to make dog training corrections

Corrections are an integral part of dog training basics. Because dogs can’t communicate in our own language, we have to make interactions with them easy to understand. This is done through binomial feedback. We offer only two possible outcomes in response to a particular command: we reward a dog for the right response (one possible outcome) or we correct him…

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Giving obedience training commands

Obedience commands allow you to connect with your dog and are the focus of dog training basics. Your tone of voice, gestures, and body language all determine whether your dog can understand you and respond accordingly. A good command can send your dog flying into action. A bad command will only lead to frustration. Ultimately, it’s all in how you…

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Dog training basics

Most people think dog obedience training only amounts to teaching a dog the meaning of words. However, to truly train your dog you have to make him understand why he should respond to your obedience commands. Only then will you be able to effectively communicate with him. The process isn’t difficult if you take a two-step approach to training.

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Your dog’s language

It’s important to understand dog language and how your dog communicates. You’ll gain insight into what he’s feeling and be able to interact with him in a way that he understands. This can make training easier, keep your dog from developing behavior problems, and deepen your relationship with him.

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Tips on house training your dog

The following house training tips should help you and your dog survive the training process with as few accidents as possible. Remember, learning how to house train a dog isn’t difficult if you keep a watchful eye and establish a routine that sets your dog up to succeed.

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Dog communication and smell

One of the lesser understood aspects of how dog’s communicate is through their use of smells. A dog’s sense of smell is more than 100 times stronger than a human’s. While a dog has some 200 million olfactory cells to register different odors, humans have only 5 million. This is one reason why scent and dog marking behavior is an…

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Your dog’s body language

The ability to interpret dog body language is an invaluable tool in training your dog. The way your dog carries himself, his ear and tail positioning, and even subtle facial expressions all provide insight into what your dog is thinking. If you’re able to read these signals properly, you’ll understand your dog’s personality and your bond with him will deepen.…

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How to crate train a puppy

You should begin crate training puppy shortly after you bring him home. Introducing your puppy to a crate from the beginning makes house training easier, provides a safe place to keep him when he can’t be supervised, and serves as an ideal way to travel with him. The sooner the crate training process gets underway, the sooner your puppy will…

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How to crate train a dog

Crate training your dog is a great way to provide a safe, comfortable environment to keep him while you’re away or when you travel with him. And learning how to crate train a dog is a simple process if you take your time and allow your dog to get used to the idea at his own pace.

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Tips for successful clicker training

Once you have a good idea of how clicker training works, keep the following tips in mind to perfect your technique and take your dog’s training to the next level. Remember that every click is a treat so once you’ve charged the clicker…

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Clicker train your dog to stay

The stay command is usually combined with other obedience training commands like sit or down, as in sit-stays and down-stays. Once your dog can reliably respond to the different positional commands, clicker training him to stay in place just takes a little patience and practice.

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Clicker train your dog to sit

Using a clicker to teach your dog to sit on command is usually the easiest obedience training exercise to start with. You can either capture the behavior when he offers it or use a lure to guide your dog into the sit position. It all depends on how much he likes to sit on his own. Once he sits reliably…

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What is dog clicker training?

Based on the principles of operant conditioning, clicker training is a simple method of positive dog training. When your dog does something you want him to do you “mark” the behavior with a sound, usually the sound of a metal clicker. You then give him a reward such as a treat or favorite toy which reinforces the behavior and prompts…

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Clicker training a dog to heel

The heel command is not a substitute for teaching your dog to walk on a loose leash. Like other obedience training commands, it’s a cue to direct your dog and keep him under control in situations where he could get into trouble. These include walking down crowded streets or in areas with lots of enticing distractions. Training your dog to…

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Clicker train the down command

The method used to clicker train your dog to lay down on command is nearly the same as the non-clicker method. The main differences are: 1) you’ll use the clicker to mark the moment your dog is in the proper position, and 2) the verbal cue will be added after he understands the behavior.

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Clicker training your dog to come

Teaching your dog to come when you call him can be one of the most difficult parts of basic obedience training. You’re asking him to stop what he’s doing, ignore all the distractions around him, and return to you. That’s no easy feat. It can take a long time to develop a reliable recall, so be patient and practice often.

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How to get a behavior for clicker training

One of the harder parts of clicker training your dog will be getting him to do what you want so you can click and treat. There are two kinds of behaviors you can use. First, you can wait for your dog to do something you think is worth repeating, also known as “emitted” behavior. Second, you can help your dog…

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Train your dog to target an object

Targeting is a great clicker training exercise to teach your dog. The idea is to get your dog to touch an object with his nose. Once he learns to touch a particular target you can use that object as a lure instead of food. Targeting also makes it easy to train more complex behaviors like ringing the doorbell, turning out…

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Charging the clicker to start training

Activating or charging the clicker is the first and most important step when getting started with clicker training your dog. This is what makes the whole process work! The click! sound signals to your dog that he offered the behavior you want and will be rewarded for it.

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Choosing the right dog trainer

Joining a class taught by a professional dog trainer is an indispensable part of your dog’s obedience training. A professional can help you fine-tune the basics of obedience exercises and help you troubleshoot problems. A class setting also helps your dog learn to socialize and gives you an opportunity to meet other dog owners. Choosing a professional dog trainer isn’t…

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Teaching a dog to stay

One of the most difficult obedience training exercises for a dog to learn is usually the stay command. Rather than getting rewarded for a particular action, when teaching your dog to stay the reward comes when he does nothing. It can be a hard concept for him to understand at first, but with patience and consistent practice a sixty second…

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Teach your dog to sit on command

Training your dog to sit is one of the easiest and most useful exercises in obedience training. The sit command can solve a number of simple behavior problems and put your dog on the road to being well-mannered. It’s the equivalent of teaching him to say “please” before greeting guests, going outside, eating dinner, or doing any of the activities…

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How to make a dog heel

The purpose of teaching a dog to heel is to keep him by your side or slightly behind you so that he walks at your pace. Heeling can mean the difference between a leisurely walk around the block and being dragged down the sidewalk. As an obedience command, heeling is also useful on crowded streets and crosswalks where you want…

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Teaching your dog the down command

After your dog has learned to sit, you can build on his newfound knowledge to teach him to lay down on command. The down command is a great way to settle your dog if he gets too rambunctious. It can also keep him in place while you eat, clean the house, or do other things that don’t require the special…

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Teaching a dog to come on command

Of all the basic obedience training commands, the recall is usually the one dog owners have the most trouble with. It can be easy to teach a dog to come when called in the beginning. But as he gets older, his recall may get to be unreliable. The trick to make recall training stick is to keep from accidentally teaching…

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The cure to dog behavior problems

So, you’ve analyzed your dog’s behavior problem and you’ve come up with ways to manage him so it doesn’t grow out of control. Now you can get to work on a long-term solution. The cure is to teach your dog new ways to deal with a situation that would normally trigger his bad behavior. This is done through positive reinforcement…

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