The 3 Most Direct Things That Make You Proficient in Dog Agility Training

The 3 Most Direct Things That Make You Proficient in Dog Agility Training

This Is Why They Call It Agility
me’nthedogs / Foter / CC BY-NC

When it comes to agility training for dogs, the concept is always to start slow and simple and then proceed to fast and complex. You may wonder what agility training is all about, but when you finish reading this article you should have a better understanding about this form of dog obedience training. Agility training is a competitive dog sport found in many cities. It offers an opportunity for dog owners to spend more time with their pets in a constructive way. On one hand, the owner trains the dog to follow commands and make accurate maneuvers around obstacles; on the other hand, it is just one of the best ways for keeping a dog busy and healthy. Here is a detailed description of dog agility training and its importance.

1. Basic Requirements

The basic requirement for agility training is a dog that can follow instructions and has the strength to complete the assigned challenges. Based on this requirement, you can go ahead and agility-train your puppies, but because of the development stage, you will have to go gentle with them. They really need to understand the task ahead, more than they need the actual obstacles; therefore, only work with dogs that are at least a year old when you are using contact obstacles, jumps, and tunnels. For puppies, just concentrate on obedience challenges. In fact, this is the best time to teach them about rewards for good performance by using various treats and encouraging words as well as expressions when they perform a task satisfactorily.

2. What Does Agility Training Involve?

Remember, you get into agility training with your dog for a chance to win the coveted best dog trophy, but the real benefit of the sport comes from the time you spend bonding with your dog. It is the best moment of the friendship that you will have together, so take time to cherish it, and understand this: it’s okay for your dog to fail, just like it would be okay with you as a person. The important thing is to keep working on both you and your dog’s weaknesses as well as learning to recognize when your dog has reached its best. Doing this helps to prevent injuries to your dog.

Agility training is all about teaching the dog to jump through or over bars without touching them to get points. It is also about moving through or over contact obstacles and touching them with paws as instructed. The training will also involve stages where the dog goes over a balance beam structure and through tunnels that vary in length and diameter. Throughout the challenge, the dog responds to the commands of its handler and points are awarded for accuracy and speed. From this description it seems straightforward, but that is where the easy part ends.

3. Dealing with Different Dog Personalities

The hard part of dog agility training occurs when you have to deal with different dog personalities. One dog can be naturally timid, while another can be fearless. You should know your dog’s personality type, as this will help you handle him or her appropriately. Other than what shows from the general behavior of the dog and the reaction to instructions, there is also the hidden personality that determines how well a dog will cope. For example, he or she may be okay with every skill you teach at home or in your regular training area; however, as soon as you take him or her to a different location, you could find that your dog behaves in a very different way due to the change in environment.

Take time with your dog, understand the personality type, and introduce him or her to new handlers and locations just to make sure your agility training is transferable. In the end, dog agility training is all about training your dog to have the necessary strength, speed, and ability to follow instructions accurately. It is the ideal training for dogs needing to stay active to be happy, not forgetting that activity also keeps them fit.

If you find this approach to dog obedience training appealing, now is the time to sign up your beagle or any other type of dog for what could conveniently turn into the best pastime for the two of you. At the same time, you will be joining the millions of dog owners who want the best for their canine pets and a chance to win the lucrative dog agility-training trophy.

Here is an example of an impressive winning performance in dog agility:

The Best Way to Teach a Dog to Fetch

The Best Way to Teach a Dog to Fetch

Fetch! [v2]
young_einstein / Foter / CC BY-NC

In looking for a fun way to exercise your dog, one of the first activities to consider is the game of fetch. Some breeds such as Retrievers have natural instincts to retrieve, but most other breeds also love to chase after objects and bring them back. This is a fun way for you to bond with your dog and get in some good exercise at the same time!

Even though the game of fetch is a natural activity, there are some basic tips and guidelines that will help you to enjoy this pastime in a fun and safe way.

Safety Issues
First, be sure to use an object that doesn’t present any type of choking hazard, so make sure the size is sufficiently large. You also want to be sure that the material will not splinter, will not be too hard on your dog’s teeth, and will not be toxic.

Popular items to use in the game of fetch include tennis balls, Frisbees, and sticks. An object such as a KONG toy has irregular bounce patterns that can introduce a fun added level of challenge.

If you use a Frisbee, special dog versions exist that have softer surfaces with less danger of damaging your dog’s teeth.

When your dog is chasing after the thrown object, he will not be paying as much attention to the environment, so be sure to check the area beforehand to ensure that the environment is safe—no broken glass, etc.

How to Throw Object
Some objects, such as Frisbees, have special techniques to launch them, while others such as tennis balls can use a regular throwing motion. If you have trouble throwing a tennis ball a sufficient distance, you can use a special ball launcher, a flexible apparatus that will magnify the effect of your throwing motion. If you have a small area in which to play, you can also use an underhand motion.

Teaching the Dog
Dog behaviorist experts such as Cesar Milan (The “Dog Whisperer”) caution against getting into a tug-of-war with your dog. Playing tug-of-war can unintentionally promote dominance issues, as the one who ends up with the object ends up winning the game of “dominance.” Playing tug-of-war can also damage a dog’s teeth and mouth if things go awry. Also, playing tug-of-war can result in your hand inadvertently being damaged when your dog goes for a better grip on the object.

Instead, teach your dog to lay the object down at your feet when he brings back the toy. Refuse to engage in the game until he lays the object down. You can use treats for positive reinforcement when your dog does the desired behavior and lays the object down.

Here are some steps to teaching your dog the game of fetch.

Step 1: Interest Your Dog In the Object
Get down on your dog’s level and introduce the object to your dog. Show your enthusiasm about the object, and move it around to arouse your dog’s chase instinct.

Step 2: Reward Your Dog’s Interest
Once your dog picks up the toy, reward his interest by giving him a treat and/or clicking with a clicker (if you’re using clicker training). Awarding the treat will automatically get your dog to drop the toy if he hasn’t already done so. Give extra verbal praise for a quick drop. Gradually increase the amount of time your dog holds the toy before awarding a treat.

Step 3: Fetch! Show Dog They Must Return Toy to Get Treat
Use body language and move away from your dog to encourage him to bring the toy to you. Reward him when he drops the toy.

A nice YouTube training video can be seen here:

By following the guidelines set forth in this article, you and your pet dog will enjoy a safe way to bond while reaping the benefits of exercise in a fun activity.

Learn The 5 Most Common Dog Behavior Problems And Tips On What To Do About Them

Learn The 5 Most Common Dog Behavior Problems And Tips On What To Do About Them

Howl
CaptPiper / Foter / CC BY-NC

A dog with behavior problems can easily drive even the most experienced dog owner crazy. Most dog owners want their dogs to be happy and healthy, and to exhibit the best behaviors. But even the most disciplined dog will once in a while demonstrate a dog behavior problem. This is because dogs are not moral–they do what they do to suit them, not because that thing is right or wrong. In order for you as a dog owner to have the best behaved dog, it is important that you learn to identify your dog’s behavior problems and how to effectively correct them. The following are the 5 most common dog behavior problems and what to do about them.

Barking
It is normal for a dog to bark once in a while, but when the dog barks excessively, or whines and howls without a reason, then that is considered a behavior problem. But before you try to correct this behavior problem it is important to find out the reason for the barking, howling, or whining. For example, a dog can bark to warn or alert you, seek attention, display anxiety, boredom, excitement, or out of a response to other dogs. Therefore, check out the reason why the dog is barking, if possible eliminate the reason for barking, teach the dog not to howl, and if the dog is seeking attention, don’t respond immediately as this will encourage the dog.

smallest puppy I have ever seen.
ClickFlashPhotos / Nicki Varkevisser / Foter / CC BY

Chewing
Chewing is considered a natural act for all dogs. But this can be a behavioral problem if the dog causes destruction. Some dogs chew when teething (puppies), when bored, curious, or anxious. In order to address this problem, it is advisable to encourage your dog to chew on acceptable objects. Ensure that your personal items are kept away from your dog. You can also keep your dog crated when you are not at home. One correction technique is to use a sharp noise when you find your dog chewing on the wrong item.

would you believe... um... yeah...
j l t / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Digging
Digging is also another common dog behavior problem that drives most dog owners mad. It is important to first understand that digging is a natural instinct in dogs, but of course this should also be controlled. There are some dog breeds that are prone to digging, for example the Terriers simply because of the hunting history they have. Some of the reasons why dogs dig include excess energy, anxiety, fear, seeking comfort, gaining access to something, or hiding possessions. It is important to find out the cause of the digging and then eliminate the source. You can also exercise your dog on a daily basis to help drain excessive energy, and you can also set aside an area where the dog will dig whenever need arises.

Inappropriate Urination or Defecation
This is among the most frustrating dog behavioral problems among dog owners. This behavior can damage your belongings, areas in your home, and it can also make your dog unwelcome in some areas. Dogs urinate as a way of marking territory, to seek attention, as a result of anxiety, or due to a lack of proper housebreaking. Train your dog where to defecate and where to urinate. You can also train your dog how to alert you whenever they feel like urinating or want to defecate; many people have success training their dog to ring a bell on the doorknob when they need to go outside.

You can also talk to your veterinarian about this problem, because sometimes health problems are the cause of unwanted urination.

pleeeeeeeze, mommy?
Darwin Bell / Foter / CC BY-NC

Begging
This is a very bad habit in dogs, which most dog owners unknowingly encourage. Dogs beg because they love food, but this should not be a reason to encourage this behavior. When encouraged, this behavioral problem can lead to obesity and digestive problems, not to mention the irritating behavior. It is hard to resist when a dog begs, especially with that longing look when the dog begs for food. But giving in is worse, as you will be encouraging this bad behavior. When you are about to eat, enforce your dog staying away from the table where he cannot stare at you. You can only let him eat when you have finished eating. Remember, in nature the leader of the pack eats first.

In summary, for you to deal with the above 5 most common dog behavior problems, it is important to find out the underlying causes of the problems before figuring out how to deal with the problems. Remember, dog training is very important for all dogs in order to have a happy co-existence with humans.

How To Use Crate Training For Your Dog with Great Results

How To Use Crate Training For Your Dog with Great Results

Banjo, crate training. Bacon in the kong helps. (And wine for me.)
K. Cagan Photos / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Using crate training for your dog takes effort and time but is very useful in a number of scenarios. If the puppy or dog is new, using a crate limits the pet to the rest of the house until all the house rules have been learned, such as what he can or cannot chew. A crate is also a secure and safe way of traveling with the puppy in your car and a way of transporting the dog in areas that dog movement is restricted. Properly training a dog to use a crate makes him know it is the safest place for him and will result in your dog being ready and content to spend time in it when needed.
Crate Selection
In most cases, the crates are plastic or collapsible types of metal pens. Most dog supply stores offer these crates in different sizes. The best crate for your dog should be large enough for the dog to turn around and stand up.
As you learn how to use crate training for your dog, know that it can take weeks or a few days, depending on the age of the puppy or dog, past experiences, and temperament. While using crate training for the dog, training must be done in a number of steps without doing it too fast, and the crate must be associated with an item or treat the dog finds pleasant.

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Introducing Your Puppy/Dog to the Crate
The crate should be put in the part of the house where there are people or the family spends lots of its time, such as the living room. Put a soft towel or blanket in the crate and take the dog to the crate while talking in a happy voice or tone. The crate door should be securely fastened to avoid frightening or hitting the dog.
You can encourage your pet to enter the crate by dropping some crumbs of food treats nearer to it and slightly beyond the door and throughout the crate. At first, the dog might refuse to go inside all the way; do not force him. You can toss treats continually inside the crate until the pet has learned to calmly walk inside the crate to eat the food. For dogs uninterested in food treats, a favorite play thing or toy can be tossed inside the crate. For some dog owners, this step can take a couple of days or just a few minutes.
Feeding the Dog in the Crate
Once you have introduced the dog to his crate, start feeding him every meal near the crate. It helps him develop a pleasant association with the crate. In case the dog has already started entering it, the dish containing his meal should be put all the way towards the end of the crate. For a dog that is still uncomfortable with entering the crate, put the food dish as far as the dog is ready to go inside the crate without making him anxious or fearful. Every time he is fed, the dish should be moved a little further inside.
Once the dog has learned to eat inside the crate comfortably while standing, close the crate until he is through with eating. Open the crate door at first after he has completed his meal. After every successful feeding, the door can be left closed for a couple of minutes more until the dog stays inside the crate for about ten minutes after taking his meal. If he starts whining, probably you have increased his time in the crate more than he is accustomed to and you should shorten his time inside the crate next time. However, if the dog cries or whines inside the crate, he should not be let out until he has stopped. Otherwise, you will teach him that to leave the crate he must cry or whine, and he will be doing it everyday. Always reinforce desired behavior, not undesired behavior.
Crating the Dog at Night
To crate the dog at night, put him in the crate using the normal treat and regular command. At first, you can have the crate in a hallway nearby or in the bedroom, especially if it is a puppy. Most puppies have to eliminate outside at night and they usually whine when they want to be let outside. For an older dog, the crate should also be put nearby to avoid associating it with social seclusion. As the dog learns to sleep comfortably all night with the crate near the bedroom, gradually move it to the place of your own liking.

By following the guidelines in this article, you and your dog can reap the benefits of crate training that have produced happy results for many others before you.

5 Incredible Tips You Can Use To Train Your Puppies

5 Incredible Tips You Can Use To Train Your Puppies

the rest of the family
paul+photos=moody / Foter / CC BY-NC

Puppy training requires starting as early as possible. Read this post to learn some effective puppy training tips and tricks that you can use as a guideline.

Having a dog as a pet in your house often brings joy in many ways. Basically, dogs are among the most common pets as a result of their many qualities, one of them being their loving nature. Puppies when properly trained at an early stage, can without hassle turn out to be the most obedient as well as loving dogs. Hence, before you grumble and mumble when your puppy chews your socks or slippers for no reason, make use of the tips that are mentioned in this article and train your puppy well.

5 Tips For Training Puppies

Here are some effective training tips that can assist you to not only train your little furry pet the intricacies of socializing and potty training, but enable you to also bond for a lasting relationship that is based on trust and love.

Tip #1: Socializing Your Puppy

This is a process by which the puppy will learn to recognize and interact appropriately with other people, dogs, and other animal species such as cats, as well as the different surroundings. Remember also that until your puppy is fully vaccinated, you must protect him or her from being exposed to other dogs that may be carrying diseases or dog urine and feces.

You can socialize your puppy hassle-free by carrying him or her to various places and allowing your puppy to be exposed to the new things that you happen to find in these places. Basically, whenever your puppy happens to display good behavior, ensure that you reinforce it by praises as well as treats.

Tip #2: Teaching Simple Commands

It is ideal that you start teaching your puppy simple commands such as “no” and “come” as early as possible. However, patience, again, persistence and consistency are requisite requirements. Basically, each time your puppy happens to do something undesirable like chewing up a mat, make sure that you use a firm voice to say “no,” removing the mat firmly.

The command “come” can easily be taught while you’re standing some distance away, calling out “come” in a very friendly way, while also giving visual clues. Also, you can squat down and then clap your hands till the puppy notices you’re calling him or her. It is always essential that you look and sound happy while training your puppy.

Every time your puppy responds as required, praise him or her. However, if he or she does not respond appropriately, be sure to scold him.

Tip #3: Potty Training Your Puppy
Potty training or house training is one of the most essential tasks; it requires a lot of patience, kindness, and a fair amount of time. First of all, you must know that while house training your puppy, you will not get immediate results.

Firstly, decide the specific place that you’ll want your puppy to use as a toilet and then take him or her there once every hour. You must ensure that you praise your puppy when he or she does what is needed in the demarcated area.

However, in case of an accident in the house, do not treat him or her harshly. Just thoroughly clean up the area so that there is no any remaining scent, and ensure that you make a note of the time. Usually, puppies sniff the floor or turn around in circles when they want to pass a stool or urinate. So, ensure that you keep a sharp watch for these signals and immediately take him or her outside once you note them.

Tip #4: Do Not Punish

Generally, positive training tactics, patience, and kindness are the only ways to train the puppy. If you’re harsh on your puppy, he or she will begin fearing you, and in the long run the puppy may be unable to master anything you want him or her to remember.

Tip #5: Using Firm and Friendly Tones

Modify the tone of your voice in accordance to the command you use. For instance, while giving commands such as “down,” “sit,” and “stay,” use a firm voice, whereas while teaching “heel” or “come” use a friendlier voice.

In conclusion, these tips combined with care and love will make the training of your puppy an enjoyable activity. Ensure that you make use of them to experience their effectiveness.

Sleeping Pups
basykes / Foter / CC BY

Dog Obedience Training – Tips to Create Great Bonding Moments

Dog Obedience Training – Tips to Create Great Bonding Moments

Just a boy and his dog
Carplips / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Introduction

Dog obedience training is one of the best things that you can give for your loving pet and yourself. Dogs are social animals and without proper obedience training they will just behave like animals. Obedience training is nothing but simply training your pet dog to be obedient and well-behaved. This type of training is considered highly essential in order to teach dogs to learn basic commands, manners, and socialization skills. Obedience courses basically teach dogs basic commands like sit, stand, heel, lie down, and how to interact with other dogs and other people. Proper training does not solve just behavioral problems but lays a strong foundation for solving just about any type of problem.

Importance of Obedience Training for Your Dogs

Obedience training is considered to be a vital aspect as it lays the foundation for solving many other behavioral problems. To actually realize and feel the importance of proper obedience training one should take a look at the consequences of excluding it from your dog’s life – excessive barking, chewing, aggression, and most dangerous of all, biting. Untrained dogs will also soil your house, destroy your belongings, dig holes in the yard, and fight with other dogs. Obedience training opens up a line of communication between you and your dog. Training is important to establish a connection in helping you and your dog to relate to each other and thereby make living together fun and enjoyable. Yes, this special training not only teaches your dog to just sit and stay, but it establishes a positive interaction between you and your dog.

Essential Tips for Dog Obedience Training

Dog training is quite an intimidating and challenging task. It requires immense patience to overcome the difficulties that you may encounter during the training sessions. Dog training can be done at home or you can enroll your dog in an obedience training class. Before initiating dog obedience training, do some research and understand your dog’s behavior.

1. The first and foremost thing to consider is you should never rush the process. Proceed to the next step of training only when your pet has mastered the first one.
2. Begin the training in a place that is familiar to your dog with the least amount of distractions.
3. Start with the basic commands like sit, stand, come, heel, and lie down before proceeding to advanced commands. Use the commands frequently so that your dog will get acquainted with them and remember them well.
4. Special breeds have special traits. Hence, concentrate on honing these unique skills and capabilities as you advance through.
5. Positive reinforcement is an effective training method. Instead of punishing your dog for bad behavior, reward it when it complies with your commands correctly. Punishment only triggers violent or fearful responses and causes dogs to go into “animal” mode. Yes, punishment rarely works well–hence, praise your dog for his good behavior. If you don’t like a behavior, take rewards away. Clicker training is considered as the best way to teach your dog using positive reinforcement.
6. Keep the training sessions short so that your dog will be more attentive and engaged. Too long a session may make your dog lose interest in the training. Remember, their attention span is short and they become tired easily. Hence, keep training short and sweet.

7. Make sure to set a dog training routine for your dog. This will enable your dog to know the difference between play time and work time.
8. Patience is very important in teaching your dog to do what you want. Be very patient even when inevitable setbacks occur. Do not over train your dog and also expect it to learn very quickly. Never force your dog to obey instantly.
9. Make sure your dog is in a good physical condition and well hydrated before starting every session.
10. Never be overly strict with your dog but instead be very understanding that learning takes time.
11. Motivating your dog and praising him by giving his favorite toy or food is an effective approach towards good dog obedience training.

Conclusion

If you learn and apply the above basic tips, dog obedience training can be a fun and rewarding experience for you and your dog. The right type of approach will definitely develop a lasting mutual bond between you and your pet dog. With perseverance and positivity, the training process will be more enjoyable for both you and your dog.

What It Takes to Train a Police Dog

What It Takes to Train a Police Dog

Delta Police
British Columbia Emergency Photography / Foter / CC BY-NC

Police dogs, commonly referred to as “K9,” usually undergo a specialized training to help the police in enforcing the law. Great care is taken when training these dogs. Police dog training basically focuses on instilling an instinct for protection. The most popular dog breeds for police training are Belgian Malinois and German Shepherd since they are strong enough to endure intense training. This article highlights how dogs are trained to work in law enforcement.

Police Dog Training Tips
Obedience Training
Obedience training is the first step in police dog training. A dog must be trained to follow every command given by the handler before continuing with further training. In fact, this would make the subsequent training steps easier. Some of the commands that a dog is required to follow are “sit,” “come,” “heel,” and “stay.” Obedience training is usually undertaken in both isolation and with distractions.
Agility and Strength Training
Agility and endurance training are an important part of training police dogs. As a matter of fact, police dogs should be stronger and more agile compared to other dogs. Police dogs are required to climb stairs or jump over walls and other related obstacles they may encounter. To undertake such activities, the dog should be agile and strong.
Training the Dog to Attack
Attack training requires an “agitator” and a trainer. The agitator acts as the target that a dog should attack. This training involves arousing and channeling the dog’s inherent aggression to perform the following activities effectively.

Chasing: The agitator provokes the dog to attack him and this stimulates the dog’s inner aggression. On the other hand, the trainer incites the dog to attack the agitator. If the dog responds to the command by chasing the agitator, it is praised for the action. However, the agitator stops teasing the canine when it becomes too aggressive. This training basically focuses on teaching the canine how to chase people and not how to attack.
Biting: This training focuses on driving the dog to attack the target. The trainer encourages the dog to attack and bite the arm guard worn by the agitator. The dog should follow all the commands of the trainer. The dog should stop the attack immediately when it is commanded to do so.
Chasing and Biting: This involves training the dog to chase and bite at the same time. To avoid getting hurt during this training, the agitator puts on padded clothing. At this point, the dog has already learned to follow the commands of the trainer. Therefore, it would be easier to control its behavior during this dangerous but important stage.
Exposure to different situations
The dog is trained to socialize with different people in different situations. Police dogs usually work in crowded places, hence they should not feel nervous and intimidated in the presence of many strangers. It must be accustomed to distractions, such as gunfire sounds, to make it tougher. In real life, police dogs usually encounter multiple distractions. The dog should be trained to sniff out bombs, drugs, and other illegal substances. With all of these characteristics in mind, one can see that the achievement needed in the training of police dogs is very high indeed.

K9 'Bodie'
kenjonbro / Foter / CC BY-NC

Improve Your Dog’s Skills with Schutzhund Training: An Introduction to the Schutzhund Approach to Training Dogs

Improve Your Dog’s Skills with Schutzhund Training: An Introduction to the Schutzhund Approach to Training Dogs

Dave Harris seminar
MikeHalesNZ / Foter / CC BY-NC

The Schutzhund dog training technique is simple and effective. In this process, your dog would be presented with different scenarios that require him to make a specific action. He would then be rewarded for making correct choices. The program is designed to motivate and give your canine recognition for being an intelligent, insightful creature that can work well with his master in any situation.

Through constant coaching, your dog would soon develop a happy and positive attitude. He would love to perform simple home duties without being coerced. Schutzhund works by stressing the innate drive impulse of dogs. It’s a procedural manual that teaches owners how to make their pets obedient. Some of the vocabulary that your animal would learn after completion of training includes:
1. Sit
2. Stand
3. Stay
4. Down
5. Fetch

How does it work?

The Schutzhund Approach is based on the principles of operant conditioning. The pet is taught motivational obedience, where following commands earn him an opportunity to fulfill his desire for good food and regular play. Ultimately, the animal should feel comfortable with training by being enthusiastic, alert, and focused.

This program is quite detailed and may also be used to teach your canine simple home manners, such as not barking aimlessly, reduced aggression, and toilet etiquette. Your pet will learn that it’s not okay to relieve itself within the living room. Moreover, owners also learn more about the drive theory and pack dynamics, including how they can be applied at home to make the dog calm, composed, and confident.

Advantages

The rate of violent home break-ins is constantly increasing. Therefore, it pays to coach your dog with Schutzhund for absolute protection. Pets trained with this approach are perfect for high-profile personalities, executives, and young families. The canines can be trained to protect your adorable family members and assets.

Studies show that pets perform better in protection than security guards. This is because they are always alert and obedient to their owners. In addition, burglars would rather go for an unprotected home than that with a vigilant dog. Animals that successful pass through this program are well-tempered, social, and only react when necessary. The Schutzhund approach has been tested and officially registered by canine authorities. In essence, this technique would prepare your dog to be a trusted family companion and loyal protector. Practical guard dogs don’t require any unconcealed stimulation for them to engage potential intruders. Your pet would be equipped with skills necessary for addressing different situations such as:

1. Burglary prevention
2. House invasion
3. Car jacking
4. Manifold threat neutralization

Furthermore, most Schutzhund canines are taught using the popular agitation method. This helps your animal inculcate the ability to handle various stressful situations at once. During the training process, an agitator raises his hand while flaunting a stick. Meanwhile, the dog perceives this action as an impending threat and charges the person. Dogs in training are only trained to bite on the arm so as to bring the aggressor down but not hurt him. The canine would hold and release its victim only on your command.

5 Tips for Stopping a Dog from Chewing the Wrong Things

5 Tips for Stopping a Dog from Chewing the Wrong Things

Bad puppy!
Tambako the Jaguar / Foter / CC BY-ND

Dogs are vital animals, at the head of the list as pets in most parts of the world. There are various classifications of dogs across the world, among them the sporting dogs, the non-sporting dogs, the working dogs, and the hound breed dogs. Common domesticated species of dogs in society include German Shepherds, Chihuahuas, British Bull dogs, Akitas, American Eskimo dogs, and many others. Human beings have partnered with dogs for various reasons. For instance, in traditional society, the partnership with dogs has aided with herding and hunting, service to the blind and disabled, and security against intruders. However, most people who are domesticating dogs in current society do it for companion purposes, that is, as pets. For whichever reasons a person ought to domesticate a dog, it remains a primary need that they must learn their behaviors, and most importantly how to communicate with them.
On an attempt to ensure a mutual relationship and understanding between humans and the dogs they domesticate, there are a number of training lessons to be included. For example, there are a number of steps that dog trainers use in order to prevent dogs from chewing. Inappropriate chewing is often a problem among puppies as they use their teeth to explore their surroundings. In as much as chewing is a usual characteristic in young dogs, it is as well true that the practice is undesirable, especially when channeled to valuable objects such as furniture, shoes, or human body parts like the hands and feet. Failure to timely control this practice consequently leads to extreme destruction of property, development of bad attitude towards the pet, and at times even medical problems.
There are a number of procedures that one should take in order to control bad chewing habits among one’s dogs. The first step is providing proper medication to the dog, which must adhere to the guidelines of the animal’s veterinary. The medications should be accompanied by good feeding, as nutritional deficiencies brought about by intestinal parasitism often results in pica, which is usually mistaken as inappropriate chewing. Furthermore, the situation may lead to nausea, and this triggers chewing as a coping mechanism.

Secondly, one should conduct a thorough dog proofing around his or her home. Despite how much you trust your dog around your home, dogs will just be dogs, and they love exploring the world using their mouth. As such, one must take control of their possessions at home, and the most appropriate way to do dog proofing is by keeping important things that you do not want to be chewed out of reach. However, there are some factors that you need to consider when moving the possessions, for instance how high your dog can jump. Mostly, dogs like chewing objects like shoes, garbage, and clothes, among other things. It is important to keep food far away from the dog’s reach.

Thirdly, as a pet owner inappropriate dog chewing can be prevented by avoiding confusing your dog. As such, it means that when you are out playing with your dog, never give objects like shoes, clothes, socks, or books to your dog. It is unfair and unrealistic for you to expect your dog to differentiate between when it is okay to chew on a shoe during playtime and when it is not okay at other times.

Fourthly, to avoid this inappropriate habit, the dog should be given other alternatives for chewing that are relatively tasty. By doing this your dog will eventually leave your personal things alone. If your dogs have fewer alternatives to chew on like toys, then don’t blame them when they end up with your possessions. Remember, dogs need to chew, especially puppies and dogs less than three years old, so make sure they have adequate chew toys to play around with when at home.

Finally, proper supervision of the pet must be carried out to ensure this inappropriate habit is stopped. It is always more productive to provide a correction the moment an infraction occurs, rather than after the fact. After finding an inappropriately chewed object when you come home at the end of the day after work is not the best time to correct. Many dog owners have benefited from the use of crate training, as long as the dog is not confined for too long of a period. By teaching your dog the proper boundaries, your expectations will be made known and both you and your dog will be happier.

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OakleyOriginals / Foter / CC BY

Understanding Hand Commands Can Save Your Dog’s Life!

Understanding Hand Commands Can Save Your Dog’s Life!

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drukaman *andré ferreira* / Foter / CC BY-NC

There are many different hand signs and verbal commands used in obedience training for dogs. However, no signals are official, and professional trainers differ in their methods. It is important for any dog owner to use whatever method they are most comfortable with and to find the easiest to follow. In order to get the best response from your pet you must connect with him, so it is vital that you remain relaxed and patient throughout the training session. If you are not relaxed, your pet may sense this and become frustrated.

Being consistent with obedience training of your dogs and training them to understand hand commands is vitally important to any dog training. You can train your dog by using a combination of both verbal and hand signal methods. Dogs use their nose, ears, and eyes to experience the world around them. A dog will understand the intention of their owner by their display of body language. A dog will always look to his owner for guidance. He will watch for hand signals and follow your lead. If you are an owner who would like to fine-tune your dog to engage his senses in order to obediently follow your commands, hand signals are the greatest foundation. Hand signals are able to reinforce commands you give your dog when they are in a noisy environment and unable to hear your verbal command. They are also essential to police situations where silence may be important. In this article, we will explore some of the more commonly taught commands for training your pet in this way.

Sit

“Sit” is the easiest and simplest command to teach and the most natural signal action. While holding the dog’s favorite treat or toy, you should lift your hand from your side directly to just above your dog’s nose. Your dog will naturally sit when following this lure. The dog should then be rewarded as soon as his bottom is on the ground. This command should be done with great patience, in short sessions each and every day. Extend your arm forward slowly and lift your hand with your palm up, without a treat. You must highly praise your dog, giving him the thumbs up sign once he sits.

Down

For a “down” signal you must turn your palms downwards while lowering your hand. You can place a treat in between your fingers as a lure for your dog, while slowly lowering your hands to the ground. Reward your dog with verbal praise and a treat immediately when he lies down. After accomplishing this, you should graduate by extending your arm, palm facing downwards, and then lowering your hand. Do not forget to give your dog the thumbs up as a reward for good behavior.

Come

“Come” is a command that is able to protect a dog from trouble and danger, making it probably one of the most important of the hand commands. This signal is carried out by extending your arm straight out and then placing your palm over towards your heart. You can also teach this command with rewards following the same process you previously used with other commands. You should first do it at a short distance. You can get your dog to consistently obey at long distances by practicing this command with a leash; a long lead can be especially helpful for graduating to long distances.

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You will then be able to practice in an enclosed area without a leash, at a later stage.

Stay

Another one of the commands that will protect your dog and keep him back until you need him, is “Stay.” Make a stop sign with your palm while holding your arm in the upright position. Without touching his muzzle, hold your palm close to it. Reward him with a treat after only a few seconds of obedience. You can slowly increase the time length and distance by gradually moving away from your pet until you are successful for a period of five minutes. Take this opportunity to teach the OK signal. Release your dog from the command by using the index finger and thumb held in a circle. This must be followed by the “come” signal for the dog to approach you. This is the time to pet and praise your dog, and have a brief play time.

Training Methods

Commonly, there are three types of training techniques that are widely used. These are in the form of electrical shocks, compulsion with a choke collar, and the giving of positive rewards. Compulsion-style stimulants are the most commonly used training methods and the demand for them has increased because of obedience problems experienced with dogs. Do some experimenting to see which style works best for you and your canine friend.

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