RSS

Tag Archives: Training

Training Tips ~ Slow Down, Fido!

dog wash in EvergreenDoes your dog eat too fast? If so, this can be a problem for a variety of reasons. Your pooch could choke, or simply take in too much air when he gulps his food down, causing gas. It can even lead to bloat, a potentially deadly disease that is seen mostly in large, deep-chested breeds. Teaching your dog to eat slower is an important issue. A dog who eats more slowly is ultimately healthier and just plain feels better. So, how can you slow your furry friend down? Here are some things to try.

Provide a spot away from the hustle and bustle of your home. It is vital to provide a quiet environment in which the dog can eat peacefully and quietly. A quiet room, a secluded corner or even a crate may help the dog relax and feel less compelled to eat fast, especially a dog who lives in a multi-dog home.

If this doesn’t seem to help, you can hand-feed your dog one kibble at a time. Some owners have also found it beneficial to spread the food on the floor in a trail so the dog will have to eat a kibble every few steps. This, of course, doesn’t work with everyone’s lifestyle, but it can help your pooch feel calmer and slow down.

Another thing to try is adding large stones to your dog’s dish. Make sure they are FAR TOO BIG to swallow. Your dog will have to work around the stones, and the result will be eating slower. You can even purchase food bowls that teach your dog to eat slower, like these.

Keep trying different methods until you find something that works. You’ll have a happier dog as a result.

Advertisements
 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Training Tips ~ The Recall

Training your dog to come when called is probably the most important thing you’ll ever teach him. At some point, responding to your recall command will keep him from danger. If your dog does not come, some consistent training and lots of praise can fix that.

dog wash in Evergreen

Putting your dog on a long lead, walk away from him. Crouch down (this is an inviting pose for your pooch) and call “Come.” Gently reel your pup in. When he gets to you, no matter how long it takes, reward him with a treat and generous praise. Continue working with the long lead, and always make coming to you a rewarding experience. Never scold or punish when your dog comes to you, even if you’re smoking at the ears because of something he’s done. He’ll associate the punishment with the last thing he did – which is come to you.

Continue working consistently with your dog, taking him off the lead in an enclosed area, but never take him off leash out in the open until you feel you can trust him completely to obey your recall command. When he’s mastered this command, it will give both of you more freedom out hiking or at the dog park.

 
 

Tags: , , , , ,

Training Tips ~ Tone of Voice

What tone of voice do you use when you call your dog? “Skip! Get over here! Skip! SKIP!” If you’re angrily yelling for your pooch and he’s not responding, maybe you should consider what’s happening. Think about it – if someone is shouting your name in an irritated manner, how excited are you to come running?

dog wash in Evergreen
Your tone of voice matters just as much, if not more than the words you’re using. A flat tone may elicit a flat response from your dog. And a grumpy voice certainly won’t encourage him to come running happily. Based on your tone, he may think he’s in big trouble when he gets there, and take his sweet time about it.

Properly training your dog to come when called, combined with a happy tone of voice, can work wonders for you. Your dog is definitely smart enough to learn individual words, but he’ll also listen to how you sound. With my own dog, I can say, “You bad thing. You are so naughty,” and tail wagging, he flops over for a belly rub. Why? Because my tone is soft and friendly, and he feels only happiness and security. But if he’s in trouble, all I have to do is say, “Uh, oh,” in the right tone, and his ears go down, his tail goes down, and he takes a submissive “I’m sorry” pose.

So be aware of your own tone of voice, especially when getting your dog to respond to a recall. And when he comes when called, always respond with lots of praise.

 
 

Tags: , , , , ,

Friends for Fido

dog wash in EvergreenDoes your dog do well meeting other dogs? Even when you’ve successfully socialized your puppy, having given her lots of positive interactions with people and other dogs, she needs continued socialization into adulthood. Some activities that encourage this include taking your pooch out to meet other people often. Regular play dates with other dogs and trips to the park can also be beneficial, but always be aware of your dog’s behavior and how she’s feeling. Don’t let her experience anxiety or show aggression toward other animals. 

If your dog doesn’t have regular playmates, there are ways to help her meet some friends. An afternoon or two a week at doggie day care will allow her to have play time with lots of other dogs, and you will quickly see how she does in social situations without you being present. Or you could consider using a dog-walker who walks several dogs at one time. The key is to provide lots of opportunity for positive interaction between your fur-kid and other dogs. If a negative situation arises, don’t hesitate to remove your pooch from the situation and discontinue the activity.

Dogs also need to meet and have positive experiences with people who come into your home. If your pet is aggressive toward your guests, one technique to try is to give every visitor treats that they can toss on the floor for her immediately upon entering your home. And of course, always reward good behavior with generous praise. Your fur-kid wants to please you more than anything.

 
 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Pet Training Tips ~ Don’t Jump!

It may be cute when your puppy jumps up on you because she’s so excited to see you and loves you so much.  But this quickly stops being cute when it’s an 80-pound dog knocking you (or your friends) to the floor in his excitement. So how do you get your pooch to stop jumping? It really only involves two things – praise and consistency.

dog wash in Evergreen

First off, you can’t successfully teach your dog not to jump on others when you let him jump on you. So the first step, is to train him to stay down when you’re around.

1. Turn your back to your dog when you come in the door and he jumps up on you. Wait until he stops jumping and say, “Good!” offering praise the moment he stops jumping. 

2. Say, “Sit!” and don’t acknowledge him with a touch or word until he sits. Offer affection at this point, and be consistent!

3. Practice not jumping with friends once your dog has mastered this with you. If he jumps say, “Off!” in a firm voice and then make him Sit. Have your friends offer praise and treats for good behavior. 

4. Anticipate jumping situations and have your dog Sit before he can jump, or redirect his attention elsewhere.

5. Consistently praise your pooch when he doesn’t jump. He wants to please you, and this will be a big motivator for him.

 
 

Tags: , , , , ,

Puppy Play

dog wash in EvergreenPlaying games with your puppy is fun, but they can also teach your puppy obedience skills. For example, Fetch is a great game to teach your puppy, and playing it she can learn to come when called, retrieve a toy, and drop it on command.

In the beginning, toss or roll the toy a very short distance from your puppy and let her get it. As soon as she picks it up say, “Fetch!” so she associates the command with the action. Then praise her like crazy.

When she brings it back, give her lots of praise, petting her body but not her head so she’s not worried about you taking the toy right away. If she doesn’t come back, use a long lead attached to her collar and gently pull your puppy back to you with the toy. Praise her for coming back.

Once she’s had a moment to hold the toy, your puppy may drop it on her own. As soon as she drops it say, “Drop!” so she associates the command with the action. If she doesn’t drop the toy on her own, get a gentle grip on the toy and wait for her to drop it. Then praise her generously for the action.

Never play this game on a slippery surface. Be aware of how much fun your puppy is having – some dogs like retrieving over and over, while others prefer to play with the toy. Your puppy will be having fun, which increases her happiness. And your puppy is learning obedience which, in the long run, increases the happiness of you both.

 

 
 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Coming Soon

One of Dogma‘s passions is making sure your fur-kid eats well. We have a variety of raw, grain-free, freeze-dried, and canned food for your pets, all made with wholesome ingredients that your pet is made to eat. Check back throughout the month of March for practical advice on food and diet for your furry friend. We’ll also be sharing some effective training tips as well as great exercise ideas you can try out with your fur-kid.

dog wash in Evergreen

Another excellent way to connect with Dogma is through our facebook page. Have you considered becoming a fan? There’s no time like the present to *like* us. We frequently run specials and deals available only to our facebook fans, and some great ones are coming in March!

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,