Archive for the Category »Florida Dog Training «

Keeping Your Dog Safe While At Work

Keeping your dog safe while your at work can be a big task. While your out your dog has so many things to get into . Clothes, food, your couch, etc. Your not at home to stop them eather. In this article i will be giving you tips to ease your stress while your at work.

One great way to keep your dog safe throughout the day is to have a morning excersize to get his enery out early. The type of exersize depends on the dogs size and age. For most dogs, off-leash running, trotting, and sniffing are ideal, because they supply not only varied physical exercise, but mental stimulation as well. The result your looking for is for him to drop on his bed and snooze.

Dog proofing the house is a big deal. You never want to leave objects on the floor or in reach for the dog. Before you leave for work i would suggest walking around picking up everything and anything. I would not advise leaving the dog in the yard. Even though you might think your fence is tall enough or dug deep enough the dog can still be in danger of intruders.

Following these tips will keep your dog out of harms way. In the end you might find your own little tricks and tips to help.

Teaching an Old Dog New Tricks

There is the old saying that is far to frequently used as a comparison to older people being set in there ways and unwilling to change. That saying is, you cannot teach an old dog a new trick. You would be surprised what your dog is capable of with some patience and time, and a bit of planning your dog can start learning some new commands and actions.

Now most dogs keep their character traits and maintain the same personality from the time there a puppy until they’re a full-grown dog. For example a dog that is nervous or in general scared of other people or dogs, without your assistance and intervention isn’t likely to change their behavior.

A solid option that is with in your control is to teach your dog to behave in specific situations a certain way. Like the ability to remain calm and attentive to you’re commands in a threatening situation. You want your dog to look to you as the pack leader. This is imperative if you expect your dog to follow your directions when it comes to learning a new task or trick.

It’s important to teach the correct response to hand signals and voice cues. This is a vital method of communication to a dog you’re training. You must remain consistent and patient during this process; your dog can sense your frustration and aggravation. So if at any time you are feeling anxious or just not in a great mood, give your dog some space and move training time back a bit to when your feeling in better spirits.

Using treats is a very good way to keep your dog interested in learning a new trick. Using the sit command, as an initial learning experience for your dog is a great idea, now for the most part even older dogs already know how to perform this command without much effort. This comes very naturally to dogs.

Studies show, that out of all domesticated animals, dogs are the most cable of picking up on facial expressions and visual and audible cues to accomplish goals that you set out in front of them. So in essence no matter what shape and size or even age your dog is, they ultimately have this all wired into there genetic make up.

Lay down is an important command to teach your dog. It shows submission in a situation where they might have been doing something you don’t care for, for example barking at the neighbor as they walk by the window out front of your home. Or even when you’re walking with them down the block for their daily romp around the neighborhood on a leash. Keep the treats in your pocket; get them to stop barking, once there calm and focused solely on you, then its appropriate to give them a treat.

Only after they have 100% relaxed and become calm submissive, then and only then do you reward them. This teaches them a learned behavior or “trick” using a treat to reward your dog is called conditional stimulus and is the most common way to train your dog to follow your directions.

Just remember to consciously follow through with a reward for the action once accomplished and you should very likely see the dog learning this new behavior and what will occur once they complete the task or action.

How to Make Sure Your Dog Won’t Eat Your Dinner

The majority of dog owners have experienced their animal begging at the dinner table. No matter how much you love your puppy, this is a behavior, which you just shouldn’t tolerate. Especially if you have guests over, then your dog should be calm and leave everyone be during their meal.

There’s a lot said about being the pack leader. This term describes making sure your dog is aware that you are the one who is in charge of your household. Many dogs male and female will attempt to show their dominance by taking your food right off your plate. This is a usual problem when you have guests over, they turn there back to talk to someone sitting next to them, and instantly they loose there main course faster than you can say “what just happened”.

The biggest issue is occasionally feeding your dog from the dinner table is a bad habit to start. Owners often justify this behavior saying, “it’s just once in a while”, or even “I rarely do this but”. These are all bad excuses because it leads to a negative learned behavior for your dog. As the owner you must lead by example if you expect your dog to behave all the time, if you expect consistency out of your animal.

Now if your dog is well trained in general and listens to commands such as lie down, stay, heel, etc., then you do have the option of just making sure your animal follows your commands, its best to ask them to lie down above all else, this helps reinforce dominance in your relationship, it reminds the dog you’re the pack leader. Then, whatever you do it will follow suit and listen as closely as possible. If you do however notice your dog start to get up from the laying down position, curb that immediately and remind them to stay lying down while your feeding them.

Ultimately, you have to remain diligent with your dog and cannot be inconsistent. Your dog learns and remembers things via repetition and consistency. Practice this at every family meal, do it often enough prior to having any company over. Once you establish your guidelines with your dog when you are eating at the dinner table, everyone will be happier for it. Dogs need rules boundaries and limitations to feel complete. This is how it is in the wild, or if you have a pack of dogs, the dominant animal is going to let the rest of the pack know when something they are doing is disruptive, or making them feel uncomfortable, so it might feel like your being cruel sometimes to your dog, but they absolutely need this to be happy and healthy.

Teach your puppy to alert you when it needs to go outside

Living with your owner as a puppy can be quite difficult in the early learning stages of their development. The first of many live lessons for your puppy is not to relieve itself inside the house. Then of course your puppy lacks the ability to explain to you in plain english that it needs to go out to do its business. Also, unless your puppy can walk on its hind legs and use both paws to open the door, you’re going to have to train them to let you know when it’s time to head outside.

Not all pet owners know how to see the sometimes subtle signs that it’s time to go out for a walk and let your dog do its business. Many puppies develop social skills quite early, thus being able to get your attention that it needs to go outside. Some however, aren’t as adept at telling people when they need to go out. Even if your dog falls into this category there’s no need to panic. There are some very easy steps you can take to train your puppy to let you know when the time is right to head outside and let them do their business.

The first question is what if my puppy already does in fact ask to go out and I absolutely don’t understand the signs? Dogs have their own way of communicating with one another. This language unfortunately we do not understand whatsoever, but your dog doesn’t realize it’s not coming in loud and clear when it expresses itself.
Now here’s a list of common clues that it might be time for a trip outside for the puppy. Pacing back and forth, circling around excessively, and whining consistently with no obviously reason what’s bothering them. Also, sniffing around when you have no other new animals in the house for which it might feel the need to do that otherwise. If you see the dog going behind furniture, or to a part of the house where you cannot keep an eye on them. Alternatively, standing by or scratching at the door in any way.

The best way however to train your dog to let you know when it wants to go outside is to hang some type of reasonably loud bell on the door knob where it has access to reaching it if nothing else. This way you can have your dog ring the bell to associate it with going outside. This way if you’re in another room even then you can hear the dog needs to head outside to relieve itself.

Keep your dog healthy with regular exercise

To ensure your dog lives a happy and healthy life, regular exercise is a must in the daily routine. You already know how critical it is yourself to exercise. Going out for a run around the block, possibly a swim or roller blading sure does leave you feeling motivated and energized. Clearly, explaining the benefits of exercise to your dog will leave both of you tilting your head in confusion. So the job falls on you as the owner to keep your dog in great physical condition. As always before starting any regiment or new diets you should consult your veterinarian.

Most pet owners main exercise provided for there dog is going to be going for walks. It’s a great idea to take your dog out for a 15-20 minute walk prior to the family going to bed for the night. This helps your pooch get to sleep when everyone else does and wake up refreshed. If your lucky enough to have a swimming pool, its a fun, easy way get your dogs heart beating and burn those calories. Also, if your dog is trained and calm around other dogs, dog parks are a great option for outdoor playing. Lots of breeds love playing Frisbee or some type of catch. Just remember, dogs were meant to be wild animals before domesticated, they could travel vast distances for food, so many dogs crave the exercise and will love you for letting them engage on a regular basis.

Another very important and often neglected thought is providing your dog quality time and one on one attention. Isolation, dejection and hostility are shared qualities of canines that have not received appropriate attention and socialize training. In fact, experts in the field have claimed that if a dog hasn’t been socialized in an affectionate, reliable setting by the time they reach sexual maturity, which is about 1- 1½ years old. Then they may never have intimate interactions with people or other animals. The plus side is delivering tender attention is the greatest thing about being a dog owner to begin with. Whether your taking your dog for a run in the park, or swimming at the beach, providing calm, affectionate contact is stress-free and fulfilling for the both of you.

For the most part you should treat your dog how you would want to be treated when it comes to exercise. Unless of course you’re not a very active person, then remember they both need and crave it. Offer a healthy diet, make sure they get loads of exercise, and make sure there’s always some quality time spent with your companion. Just make sure to have regular veterinary check-ups on top of everything else and your looking at a great long live for your puppy.

Games To Play With Your Dog That Are Both Fun And Promote Obedience

Getting Ready for Training:

There are loads of obedience games you can play with your canine companion, and many of them incorporate visual and audible cues. Here are a couple great classics that are tried and proven to be useful. This collection of great games offers a wonderful chance to train at the same time your dog is doing its favorite activity, having fun with their owners and learning without realizing it.

Hide and seek is a fun game from our childhood, but what you might not realize is your dog will absolutely love it. Not to mention the dog needs to use its senses to find you. Your animal has a natural instinct to hunt and search so finding you is a very rewarding experience for it as well. To ensure your dog gets a challenge in this activity its best to play in a large yard or fenced in area so it wont run off and loose focus.

You will first need to ask your dog to stay, and then hide in a nearby place to make it easy at first. Say whatever word you use to get your dog to come over to you after telling it to stay. Your dog should have no problem finding you since you didn’t hide in a difficult place. Now here is where treats can come in handy if your dog has a favorite one I would use it to reward them. You should make sure you increase the difficulty of the game so your dog gets the most out of it.

Now, this game teaches your dog tremendous self-control and patience. Most of you should be familiar with the old street corner game three-card Monte? Well this is oddly reminiscent of that game. To play it, you need your dog’s favorite treats and three cups. As far as indoor games go, this one offers great entertainment. Be careful however, that your dog doesn’t try and chew on the plastic cups.

I do recommend before you play this game with your dog you set it up ahead of time and have the cups on the table. Then, show your dog the treat so it’s clear what they’re playing to get. If you want to be cute you can tell them not to look while you place it under the cup. It likely doesn’t matter if they see where you put it though. Lastly, move the cups around and try and confuse your dog. Then watch as they use their senses to locate the treat under the correct. As always make sure you let them know they did a great job when they find it, that positive reinforcement is what they thrive on, use it to your advantage.

There are my couple suggestions for games to play. Always play in a safe area, not out in the street where cars can come flying past. Always keep a bottle of water handy, if your not home playing in the yard, and you’re in a park for example they will thank you for it.

Dog Agility Training & Competition

Getting Ready for Training:

If you have been seriously considering signing your dog up for agility training, then you should take the proper steps to prepare your k9 companion for what lies in store for them. Now what is dog agility you might ask? It’s a great sport that involves you and your dog, using teamwork towards a common goal. Not only is it quite entertaining to watch, it can be very addictive for the owner and dog alike, once both of you get the hang of it.

Now lets go through how it all works. The Handler directs their dog through an obstacle course of a-frames, weave poles, dog walks, tunnels, jumps, teeter totters, and chutes, in a race for accuracy and over all time.

You can’t however touch your dog or any of the obstacles that’s against the rules. There is also no use of a leash. You can only use visual and audible cues to direct your dog through the course.

Next you should factor in some tips about how to prepare your dog. This will be physical, Show your dog what it will be engaging in throughout any of the serious training. Also, what it will experience later on if you wanted to go into competitions. Ultimately if your paying for training, your instructor will always know when your dog is ready for competition. So, don’t rush towards that too quickly. Ensure your dog is fully trained and is in peak condition.

Getting Ready for Competition:

Obviously your dog needs to be fit, considerably attentive and don’t forget excited to give this their all. It’s also important that they’re jumping confidently to there full height. Unless of course you aren’t aiming for a specific size class for your dog to eventually compete in. Which means over sized obstacles, so the dogs can fit through and between them without knocking them down. Unless you are sure the competitions won’t included weaves. Then just be sure the dog is focused on your commands and excited to be there.

Your dog will also be required to complete full sequences of obstacles pretty fluently. So, remember to be fair to your dog these competitions are a measure of there competence in the sport. Don’t force them to compete prematurely, make sure they’re well prepared for what’s expected of them.

In Closing, it’s important to remember to have fun while doing this. If your not having fun, your dog will sense your tension. This can cause your dog to start acting up, and not following your directions correctly. Always remain calm, content, and over all remember to have fun.

Recognizing Dominant Alpha Dog Behaviors:

Besides the obvious guarding, growling and biting many dogs display a variety of dominant behaviors that commonly go unrecognized by their owners. Very rarely will a dog display his highest level of dominance overnight. There are usually signs leading up to it over course of a few years. Dominant alpha dogs won’t always growl and bite. If you the owner are giving the dog what he wants, there sometimes is no reason for the dog to growl or bite unless they feel challenged.

Dogs generally understand that they exist in a human world. After all, who feeds them and opens the door for them to go outside to potty? When humans perform these tasks on demand from the dog though, why wouldn’t the dog think they’re the leader? It is easy for dogs to get the impression they are alpha in their pack. There are many alpha dog behaviors that are not acceptable in human society, such as biting, which is a communication tactic that a dog may use. It is very important for humans to remain the leaders over their dogs.

Just looking at a dog and the way he presents himself can be a sign for what frame of mind the dog is in. A more dominant dog will walk high and proud, puffing themselves out as much as they can. He carries himself with what looks like dignity to the untrained eye.

Submissive dogs on the other hand carry themselves in very much the opposite way. They hold their heads low with shoulders and tail down, in a sense making them smaller. Generally, it will appear that a submissive dog is a sad dog. Not so, the posture of these submissive dogs is telling all around them that they do not wish to challenge any other dog or that they come in peace. Dogs are animals that will fight amongst each other naturally. This means their natural defense is to fight when they feel threatened. That is why they make it as obvious as possible when they do not wish to have an altercation of any kind.

Since dominant dogs look so proud and submissive dogs look sad since they hold their heads low, it’s no wonder so many people have dominant dogs. When their dog acts submissive they mistake that for a sad dog. When their dog acts dominant they mistake it for a happy proud dog.

Diagnosis for Separation Anxiety in Dogs:

First, understand that your dog is not trying to get even with you for leaving him home alone. The destructive behaviors, going potty on the floor and neurotic behavior that accompany dog separation anxiety are linked to a panic response. Luckily, for you the owner, the panic response is a behavior that is successfully modified with corrective, positive reinforcement to help calm nerves and promote your dog’s confidence and wellbeing.

No one fully understands why there’s some dog that suffer anxieties more than others when some dogs don’t at all. However, it is known that dog separation anxiety sometimes occurs when a significant change in routine, structure or surroundings such as the absence of an important companion. This may also occur when moving into a new home, a new pet or person in the family, or perhaps a change in the normal feeding schedule.

Before we get into the process of what to do about dog separation anxiety, let’s spend a moment going over what NOT to do. First and foremost, don’t punish your dog. Punishment of any form is NOT an effective way to treat dog separation anxiety as well as any unwanted behaviors. A response such as this, on the part of the owner (you) only serves to reinforce the behavior you’re trying to do away with.

Providing another pet as a potential companion for your dog won’t exactly help either. Dog separation anxiety stems from your dog being separated from you and not so much from being alone. Being unable to play with another animal isn’t the same as just being plain old bored. There is a major difference between boredom and loneliness.

Incarcerating a dog with separation anxiety in a crate is also not the answer, nor a solution. A dog’s nature is to be free. A nervous dog locked in a crate is now left with a heightened panic response but now with a build up of paranoia and desperation on top of it. The added risk of your dog injuring himself in an attempt to escape from the crate is also heightened.

Obedience training alone will not address this psychological problem. Although, there is no question that obedience training is a satisfying and worthwhile experience for the both of you to enjoy. Dog separation anxiety is an uncorrected panic response and is unrelated to obedience as well as disobedience.

Dog Training with Positive Reinforcement:

Positive reinforcement dog training is a friendly method of teaching your dog to perform behaviors using dog food, treats and other positive actions in the form of a reward. Rewarding appropriate dog behavior makes that behavior more likely to become a future re-occurrence. This is one of the most powerful tools you can use to reshape or change your dog’s actions. Using positive reinforcement dog training teaches your dog what behaviors you do and don’t desire in a humane manner. This training method will also help to create healthier and much stronger bond between you and your dog.

Training based on physical punishment involves some level of discomfort or even pain and is most definitely not recommended. This also may cause your dog to bite in order to defend himself. Punishment may also be associated with other stimuli, including people, present at the time and occurrence of the punishment. For example, a dog that is punished for getting too close to a small child may become fearful or even defensive around that child.

When getting started, timing is key with positive reinforcement dog training. Your dog must be rewarded immediately for responding appropriately to your command. Every member of your family should use the same command system and of course, never reinforce the wrong behavior. For example, if you command your dog to sit, he should be given a treat the moment his bottom touches the floor. If you wait to long before giving him the treat after he stands up again, the moment will be lost. He will then think he is getting rewarded for standing, not sitting.

Most dogs will gladly work for positive rewards such as a tasty dog treat, play time and toys. We suggest that you choose a treat that is relatively small, soft, and easily broken apart. Treats should be highly valued by your dog as well as easy consumption. It is difficult to train a dog when he spends valuable time chewing and swallowing his reward. You want your dog to quickly eat the treat and look to you for more. Try to experiment with several different types of treats and find out which ones will work best. There are some dogs out there that are not motivated by food. If this is the case, try training using praise or build motivation through the company of other dogs.