Should Your Dog Sleep In Your Bed With You?

Should Your Dog Sleep In Your Bed With You?

As a trainer, I get this question all the time: “Should I let my dog sleep on my bed (or couch)?” In general, my answer is always – “It is up to you.” However, I also advise that there may be a few situations when you may not want to share your resting space with your dog.   If you have a Great Dane puppy or other large breed puppy, you need to remember that the pint-sized pup will eventually be an enormous adult. Your sleep is important to maintaining a healthy life and you may not be able to … Continue reading

Dog House-Training, Potty Training, Housebreaking, Oh My!

Dog House-Training, Potty Training, Housebreaking, Oh My!

A common source of frustration for the puppy or newly-adopted dog owner, let’s simplify potty-training! Potty training, house-training, the traditional term “housebreaking…” It’s all the same thing, isn’t it? It means teaching new puppy (or dog) – we’ll call him Bellhop for the purposes of this article – to eliminate in some places, and not to eliminate in others. As a general rule of thumb, you can assess that your puppy can probably “hold it” for the number of months old he is, divided by two. (So a two month old puppy can probably only hold it for about an … Continue reading

#1 Dog Training Myth

1 Dog Training Myth

Dogs act out of spite. Or Dogs know they are being bad.   As a dog trainer I hear it a lot. Owners believe that their dog, at one time or another, tries to get even with them after the owner does something that the dog doesn’t like or views as a punishment like… keeping them in a crate not taking the dog for a walk jealousy over another dog jealousy over a kid physically hitting the dog This is completely false. Dogs do not know right from wrong, they are amoral. They only know if something/someone is safe, unsafe, … Continue reading

Simple Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Training Time!

Simple Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Training Time!

Fitting in time for training can be a challenge for many people so here are some tips to help you get the most out of your training time. Teach new skills in an area that is free of distractions so your dog can focus easily. As your dog progresses, strengthen the training by adding one of “duration”, “distance” and “distractions.” “Duration” refers to the length of time a dog can stay in a sit or a down for example. “Distance” refers to the distance from the trainer at which a dog can do an exercise. “Distraction” refers to things that … Continue reading

Debunking Common Dog Training Myths

Debunking Common Dog Training Myths

Some dog training wives’ tales boggle my mind.   Many years ago I worked with George, an elderly man who had cerebral palsy. Because he had very limited use of the left side of his body, he could not hold a leash with his left hand and his left leg dragged behind him when he walked. When I met George, he was struggling to work with his Jack Russell Terrier, Emily. Another trainer told George that he had to walk Emily on his left side. (Some trainers require dogs walk this way because walking on the left is a requirement … Continue reading

Why I DON’T Train My Clients’ Dogs to Heel

Why I DON'T Train My Client's Dogs to Heel

In the basic obedience classes I teach as a dog trainer, I don’t spend hours training the dogs to heel. I don’t even spend much time on loose-leash walking as a trained behavior. I simply direct my students to the smorgasbord of anti-pull gear at the local pet store (front-clip harnesses and head halters), and move on to other items on the curriculum, like safety recalls, jumping up, and leave-it. It’s not that training dogs to heel isn’t fun–it certainly can be, if we toss the out-moded leash-pop and use a modern training plan. But few of my students actually … Continue reading

Just How Similar Are Dog’s Emotions to Ours?

Just How Similar Are Dog's Emotions to Ours?

Many people have experienced behavior in their dogs that leads the owner to believe that dogs are capable of feeling emotions similar to those felt by humans. Not only do dogs appear to experience a wide range of emotions, studies show that dogs recognize emotions in other dogs and in humans. The results of a study by a team of animal behaviour experts and psychologists from the University of Lincoln, UK, and University of Sao Paulo, Brazil led the researchers to believe that dogs truly recognise emotions in humans and in other dogs and can discriminate between positive and negative … Continue reading

The Positive Relationship Between Inmates and Dogs

The Positive Relationship Between Inmates and Dogs

The American criminal justice system holds more than 2.3 million people according to the most recent Prison Policy Initiative Report. Approximately 3.3 million dogs enter U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year, according to the ASPCA.   These two very different problems in our country seem to reach a crossroads with the inclusion of inmate trained shelter dog programs in correctional facilities across the nation. With inmates helping to train dogs available for adoption, the dogs are benefiting and so are the inmates. With the advantages associated with these programs, shelters and prisons are coming together all across the country to … Continue reading

How Owning a Dog Can Make You More Sociable

How Owning a Dog Can Make You More Sociable

One thing is for sure. If you have a dog you have no choice but to exercise it. That means getting up off the couch and heading out the front door.   And depending on what age, breed and energy level your dog is will depend on how much exercise and stimulation they need. So here are 3 ideas to help you meet people while out with your dog: Talk to People at the Dog Park Dogs have a way of bringing people together! So take your dog to a dog park in your area. Then, strike up a conversation with another dog person. I’m a pretty shy person by nature, … Continue reading

Is Your Dog Bored? How to Tell…

Dog Bored? How to Check…

Is your dog bored or frustrated? Here are some fun activities that are actually easy to add to your life…   Especially if you are the owner of a “supahsmaht” dog, you may have found out that the pent-up canine can get destructive or otherwise into trouble when they’re bored, frustrated, or simply too full of energy to relax! Here are some fun and easy ways to keep Chauncy out of the garbage and your sanity intact without too much extra work. Play the Find It Game!   Get yourself a handful of smelly treats that your dog loves & … Continue reading