Archive for » February, 2011 «

Amazing Dogs

In today’s world, we hardly think about the true talent that dogs have.  Dog training is taken to a whole new level by a few insane feats of talent, but we often only see them as pets and companions, which is because most of the time they are.  Whatever our view on our furry friends may be, we have often downgraded them.  Dogs aren’t just able to be your best friend, but your eyes, a way to rescue people, a way of tracking criminals, and more.

Seeing-eye dogs

Seeing-eye dogs are often seen aiding the blind, maneuvering them around on their daily routs.  However, most people don’t know that these dogs go through intensive training to help their owners, aiding them in accomplishing  things that are impossible for them to do on their own.  These dogs are truly remarkable, learning commands and becoming a humans eyes.  Seeing-eye dogs are not only a persons guide, but a best friend to those in need.

Search and Rescue Dogs

Search and rescue dogs are dogs trained to find injured or lost people.  These dogs can catch a scent of humans in any terrain, and are often today used in war.  Dogs of this caliber are respected as war veterans, saving hundreds of lives simply by having persistence and a good nose.  Search and rescue dogs are remarkable to see in person. There are taped tests that rescue dogs go on, and you can see them tracking down a persons scent right to their destination, and in amazing time!

Trackers

Trackers are known for their extra-sensitive noses that can detect amazing things.  These dogs are seen with police, and given a sniff of anything, they can find it in minutes.  Often used to detect drugs, these dogs run to the destination they sense is correct and are either trained to sit down next to the suspected person, or attack.  Also, given a sniff of a clothing item, they can detect who’s it is, helping in criminal investigations.

Overall, don’t underestimate the abilities of these astounding animals, because mans best friend is really talented.  Dog obedience can be altered and pushed until it reaches a new level of amazing, and these exceptional dogs help us in our everyday lives.  Whether it be finding our country’s honorable men, tracking down it’s criminal’s, or aiding someone, these dogs are more than what meets the eye.

Bulldogs

Bulldogs of all breeds are known for their adorable features, but what’s underneath all those wrinkles?  The characteristics of a bulldog can be a big factor in considering if the breed is right for you and your family, and can make all the difference in your relationship with your dog.

Temperament

Despite the slightly intimidating look that some bulldogs have (such as the English bulldog),they are actually very well tempered dogs.  Bulldogs rank very highly in dog socialization skills,  and are known to continually act like puppies, even in their elderly years.  Bulldogs are easily well-behaved family dogs, and do very well around children.  Most of the dogs in this breed are lovable attention-seeking dogs that need constant interaction with people, and they are especially good for families of four or more.  However, bulldogs often become attached to one owner just as many other dogs do.

Obedience

Bulldogs are infamous for being stubborn, but this is only because they are often improperly taught.  Bulldogs respond best to positive enforcement rather than punishment.  Constant rewards for good acts, and light punishment for wrongdoings will straighten out a bulldog much faster than negative treatment will.  Bulldog training is not a fast process.  Bulldogs take constant reinforcement to good treatment to form a habit, and generally take longer to train than other dogs.  Thusly, it is best to begin dog obedience classes when it becomes a family member.

Health Issues

Bulldogs, no matter how adorable, have a large variety of possible health problems.  Dog care is something that you have to be very willing to see as a regularity if you get a bulldog, because they can be very needy. Some of these problems include allergies, dermatitis, eye lid anomalies, hip dysplasia and heart problems.  The most common issue with bulldogs however is their low tolerance to heat.  Bulldogs can not be left outside in hot weather ever, and are almost permanently inside dogs.  For many people, all this means is that a doggie door is necessary, but for others it means that they will be responsible for taking their dogs in and out of the house.  This is very important to consider if you are thinking of adopting a bulldog.

For more information on bulldogs and dog adoption, contact our Florida Dog Training center or ask your local dog trainers.

Teaching Your dog to swim #2

For those of you who need more than just wading your dog into water to get them to swim, you require more help in the process.  These additional dog training tips should help you with teaching your dog to swim.

Help

Have a friend come over with a dog that swims and take the dog into the pool.  This will show your dog that other dogs swim and that it’s fun! Learning from watching others is common in dogs, and the experience of others usually gives them confidence to try something themselves.

More!!!

Try going deeper and deeper into a gradually declining pool, offering them treats as you go.  Go back about one foot every time they accept the treat, and increase the number of treats they get for going deeper into the pool.  This process may not happen all at once, but try it a few times a week if they seem uncomfortable at first.  once they get far enough to the point where they have to swim, significantly up the treat number.  Temptation should dominate fear when treats are in the picture!

Last Steps

Try putting your hands under your dogs stomach and pulling him in the pool deeper.  Move them slowly, but show them that they are safe.  Don’t let them squirm away when you get too deep because then they are forced to swim.  When they are deep enough to swim stay there for a few seconds. If your dog is uncomfortable doing this, repeat the process every other day until they are comfortable in water.  When you get to the deepest part of the pool, see if they are comfortable having you let go.  When you think they’re ready to swim, slowly let go.  You’re dog should be able to handle it from here, but follow them to make sure they’re okay.  You may want to wear goggles because lots of dogs are big splashers!

Contact our Florida dog training center with any questions.

Teaching Your dog how to swim

It’s safe to say that many dogs learn how to swim in a way that is natural and automatic. However, others may need some help getting there.  For those who need some help training your dog to swim, here are some dog training tips to help you teach your furry friend to dog paddle!

Familiarity

Dogs often find pools to be a foreign concept, and what they aren’t used to can scare them away.  Therefore, if you’re going to teach your dog how to swim, you want to have them near you while you’re swimming.  Seeing you in the pool will show them that it’s not a dangerous or scary thing, and will help them progress in their learning.

Beginning

When you’re first teaching your dog to swim, it should be in a gradually declining pool.  Start with them at the shallowest part of the pool and just let them dip their feet in.  Don’t try suspending your dog above the pool and letting them frantically paddle, because as funny as it may be to us, it’s horrifying to them and can scare them away.  put a leash on your dog and make sure to have plenty of treats with you when you begin the process.  First you want to gently walk your dog into the water.  After you’ve gone a little ways in, feed them treats and show them you love them with lots of pets and praises!  if they are comfortable doing this, grab a toy they love and try tossing it a little farther every time you throw it in the pool.  They will gradually become adapted to this and see it as a game, and they should be comfortable swimming in the pool after this.

If you are still having trouble getting your dog to swim, leave a message below or contact us at out Florida dog training center.  An additional blog on teaching your dog to swim can be found on this site also.  Come with any questions or comments, love your dog!

Misconceptions About Small Dogs

Small dogs have been put under many stereotypes due to their size, and many of us have wrongly judged small dogs based on these untrue judgments. Thus we are here to clarify some myths regarding dog training, socialization, needs, and energy regarding small dogs.

Exercise

Many people believe that small dogs do not need as much daily activity as bigger dogs due to their size.  This however is not true.  Some smaller dogs such as Jack Russel Terriers are extremely energetic, and require equal, or even more exercise than larger dogs.

Training

It is a well known thought that small dogs do not require training because they are believed to generally be lap dogs.  All dogs should (at the very least) learn their everyday commands such as sit, stay, etc.  Small dogs are actually dodgier than bigger dogs because they can run through the door when you open it a little and fit in small places.  Dog training is necessary for every type and size of dog, but small dogs especially need to be taught not to run, jump, and bark.

Barking

Many people believe that small dogs bark because they are bred in a way that makes them loony by birth.  I wont disagree with the fact than many small dogs are prone to excessive barking, but they do not bark for the believed reasons.  Many small dogs bark because they recognize their small size and prefer to feel big by making constant noise.  Many small dogs are also constant barkers because they were bred to be alarm dogs.  Small dogs are great with warnings, but generally bad with defense.

Children

Couples tend to get smaller dogs when starting a family because they believer smaller dogs will be easier for the children to handle, and will better deal with kids because of their small size.  This misconception is particularly bad because small dogs tend to be jumpers.  When we say they are jumpers, we mean that they leap on friends and family when they enter a house, and bigger dogs know that the baby is smaller than them, and will not hurt the baby because they are afraid.  Small dogs however realize the equality in height and tend to jump because they don’t know better if you haven’t taught them, therefore dog obedience is very important if you are considering getting a small dog.  Remember that if you have a child, supervise your dog around them at all times.

To learn more about small dogs leave a message below or contact our Florida dog training center. Love your dog!

Foot Booties For Dogs

What are Foot Booties?

Foot booties are basically shoes for dogs.  These ’shoes’ can service many different uses, and knowing these can make all the difference in your opinion on the product.  Foot booties have been known for their big variety of uses on dogs, but what exactly are they used for? There is no singular reason to get your dog booties, but there are rather a variety of different booties for different situations.  Foot booties can have an enormous impact on dog health, and foot booties can be a big part of proper dog care.

Temperature

Many dogs hate snow because the pads on their feet aren’t as thick as some other breeds, and it makes them cold to walk on it.  Foot booties protect their feet from the cold of snow making it more fun for them to romp around in.  The same goes for if the temperature where you live is very hot.  Dogs with sensitive paws will greatly benefit from foot booties because they protect their paws.

Surgery

Some dogs tend to pick at stitches after surgery, which can be dangerous to their health.  Foot booties make it nearly impossible to undo stitches or remove needed bandages.  Foot booties are therefore a good idea for fussy dogs that pick at stitches.

Dogs With Medical Issues

Many of us have seen dogs that roll around on wheels due to paralization in their legs or lower body.  In these circumstances, the wheels work wonderfully, but some dogs unknowingly drag their back feet when they roll around, damaging their nails and toe pads.  Booties protect dog’s back feet from being damaged when they are lightly dragging on the ground, helping them stay healthy.  Another medical issue that booties help with is when a dog is missing a foot, and yes it happens.  These booties can be custom made to act as a clip-on foot for disabled dogs, getting them up and running again!

For more information, talk to your local dog trainers, or contact our Florida dog training center.  We have a list of recommendations for dog booties if you need help finding some!


Taking Care of Your Dogs Teeth

Dental diseases are common in dogs, especially periodontal disease, so prevention is the biggest step when you want to take care of your dogs teeth.  There are many ways to keep your dogs teeth clean and healthy, so if you want to learn a few dog care tips, keep reading!

Food

Giving your dog dry food instead of canned or creamy food will help prevent tooth decay.  The dry products are specifically made to scratch and cleanse your dogs teeth in order to clean them.  The canned foods may seem more appetizing to your dog, but remember that this food easily gets caught in their teeth, causing issues with their teeth and gums, so unless you want to learn how to brush your dogs teeth, we suggest you stick with dry.
Vets

Every time you go to the vet, make sure you have a professional cleaning done.  A professional cleaning will keep your dog’s teeth healthy, and doing this every once in a while will keep you updated on your dogs dental health.

Brushing Advice

If you want to brush your dogs teeth as a last resort, there are a few things you need to consider.  Never use a human toothpaste on your dog.  Our toothpaste doesn’t work the same on dogs as it does on us,an additionally,  veterinarian offices generally have a suggested toothpaste that have flavor that is more appealing to your dog than ours.  Another thing to think about is the actual brush.  You never want to use a hard bristled brush on a dog.  Unlike the toothpaste, you can use human products when it comes to tooth brushes, but make sure the bristles on the brush are soft and gentle on your dogs teeth.  Vet’s usually have toothbrushes that come along with their toothpaste, so ask next time you go in.

For more information, contact our Florida dog training center, or locate some local dog trainers.

Shock Collars

The use of shock collars has been a big base for debate since they were invented, but everyone has their own ideas about how to train their dog.  Shock collars obviously aren’t made to be a promotion for dog abuse, but are rather used for several key dog training purposes.

Dog Training

Shock collars are used to influence dog obedience in a slightly harsher way.  This type of shock collar can be used by setting up perimeter flags around your house, so that whenever your dog walks outside of the designated area, it will give your pet a light shock.  The shock collar is also used to discourage barking.  The way this collar works is by depicting how loud your dog is barking.  The louder the bark, the harder the shock.  If a dog has aggression issues, it is not uncommon that the owner will have a remote controlled shock collar for their dog.  This remote will shock your dog on cue, so if your dog is acting up, you have control to show them that they are out of line.

Shocking News

The electric current delivered from a shock collar is from two points on the dogs neck, and the effects depend on your type of dog, and your type of collar.  Factors that contribute to the differentiations in dog collars include the voltage of the electric current, how long the shock lasts, and also the frequency of the shock that is used.  This shock will cause discomfort, thus teaching your dog to avoid the behavior that led them to the shock.  The good thing about the bark collar and the boundary collar is that they teach your dog even when you’re away from home.  The amount of pain your dog feels will depend on the type of dog you have, their size, their skin, and their fun.  If your dog is sensitive, a shock collar probably isn’t the best way to go, but a decision to use one should be based on your personal opinions of the pros and cons of the device.

For more information contact our Florida dog training center, or talk to some local dog trainers.

Different Dog Collars

When choosing a dog collar, many people do not understand that the collar you choose could heavily effect dog obedience and health.  Your specific type of dog should have a specific type of collar or harness, and this choice, having such an impact on dog care, should be something that more people are aware in the importance of.  Here are a few types of dog collars.
Old Fashioned

The original buckle collar is the one you see on most dogs.  These collars are adjustable and don’t pinch or pull.  leather is the best choice when considering the buckle collar because they don’t tend to chaff or break hair as much as the nylon types. Plus they last longer
Break collars

Break collars were invented to let a dog escape from it’s collar to avoid being strangled by accident.  These collars will release their clip if the strap gets stuck on something, which could save your dog, and also work so that when you put a leash on, the clip will not open.
Chokers

Chokers, also called slip collars, are generally used for training or for generally unruly dogs.  this metal chain tightens around a dogs neck if they pull on the leash, teaching them not to pull you when they walk.  If you plan on getting a choker, you should ask for the specific type for your dog, because the wrong type could get caught in their hair, or choke them.  However, this isn’t a problem if you get the right type and size.  These should never be used on puppies.
Pinch Collars

Pinch collars have a shockingly gory appearance, but don’t be fooled by it! Despite the looks of the pinch collar, they are actually a safer training method than using a choker.  These collars are typically metal, and pinch the dog when they pull on the leash, making training faster, and teaching your dog never to pull.  These leashes, however, can never be left on your dog when they are unattended and should also never be used on puppies.

Harnesses

Harnesses are a type of leash that distribute pressure equally throughout the dogs chest and make walking little dogs and non-pulling dogs easier.  Harnesses have a strap that go over your dogs chest and stomach.  These were originally made in order to allow your dogs to pull heavy weights, and are still today used on sled dogs.  However, they are now also used as a way to protect dogs because of the way they spread the weight of your pulling on the leash.  Many trainers believe that this collar influences pulling, but some find it quite effective in different cases.

Head Harness

I’m not going to lie, these look a little funny.  This harness goes on the dogs face right above their nose, and right under their neck.  The head harness was created for dogs that pull, and make most dogs very uncomfortable, however they are very effective.

Shock Collars

We won’t give out much information on this type of dog collars, because they tend to have more negative than positive effects on a dog, but they basically shock your dog when they go out of the perimeters you set around your home, or shock them when you press a button.  We personally do not recommend this collar for any dog.

If you have any additional questions, contact our Florida Dog training Center, or talk to your local dog trainers.

Rottweiler Misconceptions

Rottweiler’s are often thought to be viciousus dogs due to improper training that most people have witnessed.  This breed of dog is not bred to be vicious, but is rather bred for power and ferocity, and due to the misconceptions that people have seen, they are seen as a mean dog.  We will help you see why dog training is a must with these dogs, and how to deal with puppy socialization

Children and Family

Rottweilers may seem mean, but they are great with kids.  These dogs tend to have a herding instinct that keeps them in touch with your kids, and keeps them from wandering off.  A Rottweiler will be very protective, but they will keep your children and you safe at all times.  The misconception of the Rottweiler being an angry dog comes partially from their fear of strangers.  When a Rottweiler becomes afraid, they become defensive and competitive, but with proper training, this should not be an issue.

How to Deal With Aggression Early

Rottweilers aren’t just afraid because of strangers, but anything that may encroach on their home.  These dogs need to have had great puppy socialization in order to be comfortable around strangers, but their barking can be avoided.  Training is needed with a Rottweiler, and if you are going to get one, we personally suggest you get one when it is a puppy.  Puppies will be trained in the ways that you personally want them to act instead of in the ideal’s of other people’s homes, and this will prevent future issues with aggression.  If they are not puppy trained, chances are that these dogs WILL be aggressive and potentially dangerous around strangers, so if you don’t have extra training time for a dog, do NOT get a Rottweiler.  These dogs need strict owners that will keep them in their place, and constant care and attention, good for bigger families.  These dogs are not naturally aggressive, but if you let them get angry with you, you will have future problems with training.  It is highly suggested that if you are one of the people who says things such as, ‘he can’t help it, he’s a puppy!’, that you do not get a Rottweiler.

All in all, a Rottweiler’s attitude is all in their training.  If you have questions, please contact our Florida dog training center!