Whole Dog Journal training article

For those of you who don’t subscribe to the PleaseDon’tBitetheBaby blog, I am cross-posting:

Once again Pat Miller CBCC-KA, CPDT-KA has written a lovely article for the Whole Dog Journal that offers families with dogs some great tips on keeping kids and dogs safe around each other.

If you subscribe to The Whole Dog Journal, you will see this month’s March 2018 edition with the article: “Kidding Around, Combining kids and dogs in your family can be magical and heartwarming, or cause a devastating tragedy…”

If you don’t subscribe to WDJ, I highly recommend you do, and not just for this article, there is so much more. At least a half a dozen times a month I recommend WDJ to new dog families and even established dog families for the journal’s ongoing commitment to information on training, behavior, health, various products from harnesses to toys, and the annual food guides are invaluable.

Thanks go to Pat Miller and The Whole Dog Journal for reminding families of the some of the ways they can make their dogs and kids safe together. And, thanks go from me for the nice nod to Please Don’t Bite the Baby, and Please Don’t Chase the Dogs.

Every family can work to make their kids and dogs safe around each other with some management, training, and time.

Resource Guarding Excerpt

Resource Guarding can be one of the trickiest behavioral issues to modify and manage because there are so many variations.

  • Some dogs only guard their food
  • Some guard toys
  • Some guard bones
  • Some guard anything that hits the floor
  • Some guard whatever it was they just stole

Regardless of what your dog guards and to what degree, the process is the same. There will be adjustments for management and time needed to modify the behavior, but ultimately it is all about teaching your dog that giving up something is far more profitable then guarding it.

And, occasionally, the guarding will pop up for the rest of your dog’s life during stressful periods, or high energy/excited play, but by keeping your dog’s skills in good working order, you will be able to easily resolve any guarding issues.

I have lived with, Pinball, the ‘Super Villain of Resource Guarding’ and have posted an excerpt about my strategies for working through his issues from my book “Please Don’t Bite the Baby, and Please Don’t Chase the Dogs.”

We were all a bit worried when our son arrived in our home with the ‘Super villain of Resource Guarding’ living there. However, by teaching Pinball good solid commands, and slowly allow him and my son to spend managed time together, we saw things we never expected to see. This video where Charlie Brown Takes a Dive is a great example of how far a resource guarding dog can come with some skills, management, and persistence.

 

In the end, if your dog guards things, training good skills then working with a good behavior consultant is essential to take those skills and turn them into more positive behaviors.

Pets and your Health, Puppy Training

Dr Frank Adams of SiriusXM’s Doctor Radio has a great show each month called “Pets and your Health.”

Three Golden Puppy Play Date

I was flattered to be invited to speak with them again yesterday, March 7th about puppies and all the questions that come with having a new puppy.

This a wonderful show (not just because they like me) but because Dr. Adams’s guests answer questions on a variety of pet-related topics and showcase the ever increasing data demonstrating how pets make our lives better.

If, like me, you are in your car a lot and have SiriusXM, you can listen for the re-broadcast of this episode Friday 4am to 6am, Sunday 6am to 8am on channel 110. If your not up and awake enough at these times to listen, you can always stream this episode and others on SiriusXM Doctor Radio.

Just as a shout out to SiriusXM Doctor Radio, besides Dr Adams’s shows “Pets and Your Health” and “Pulmonology,” there are plenty of other great shows to listen into, from “Health Care Connect” that answers all your insurance related questions at a time when we all have questions on this topic, to dermatology, men’s health, women’s health, nutrition, child and adult psychology and more.

Odin preparing for his family’s new baby. Good Boy!

Odin’s family took time before their new baby came home to learn how to and what to train Odin to do to keep their family happy and safe together.

Odin preparing
Odin settled near his new baby girl’s automated swing.

Odin’s family is expecting their first baby any day now – maybe today!

When she arrives everyone’s life will be changed. Mom and Dad know what’s happening, Odin probably doesn’t.

This is why it’s so important to see how our dogs behave around new baby gizmos before baby arrives because:

  • There won’t be a lot of time when baby comes home
  • If we wait until baby is actually in the swing or vibrating Pack-n-Play or other moving and/or sound making device, we won’t know if our dog is reacting uncomfortably because of the gizmo or the baby
  • And, if we know ahead of time that our dog is not as comfortable with the baby gizmos, we can desensitize

In the picture above Odin has been given his settle command while the swing gently goes back and forth in close proximity to him.

Odin’s family took time before their new baby came home to learn how to and what to train Odin to do to keep their family happy and safe together. For more details on how to keep your baby and dog(s) safe and happy together, and chapter excepts, Please Don’t Bite the Baby, and Please Don’t Chase the Dogs.

Congratulations to Odin and his family – it is all well worth it!

Nails part #1

Here is one of my favorite students, Bandit, taking care of his front nails himself on the sanding board. As you can see, he is enjoying himself.

Bandit Stool trick
“Couldn’t I just sit here on this stool looking cute until you forget about that whole nail thing?”

Taking care of our dog’s nails can sometimes be a arduous task but it is a necessary one. If a dog’s nails grow too long, the nails push against the ground every time the dog puts weight on his or her feet which affects the movement of different joints by shifting the alignment of the leg bones and that can cause our dogs pain and lead to arthritis. It is hard to imagine that long nails can cause our dogs hip, knee, spinal pain and more, but it’s like that old song, “…shin bone connected to the knee bone…”

Sometimes our dogs allow nail trimming with little protest, but more often than not, if we have not trained our dogs to tolerate (and even love) nail clipping or dremmeling, they are only putting up with it.

“Love it?” You say?

Indeed. Before my fringy dog Pinball came along, all my dogs had their nails demmeled. dremel%C2%AE8100-9183They came running when they heard me taking out any power tool, disappointment showing on their faces when it wasn’t the Dremmel, but my saw or nail gun instead. And, when it was Dremmel time, it was party time!

Because Pinball has such long fringe, I cannot Dremmel his nails. The fringe from his tail got caught in the sanding drum early on in his nail dremmeling career, and that was enough for all of us. Instead, I have to clip his nails, which is not my favorite. I’ll admit it, I am a “quick wimp” and because of my fear of clipping his quick, I never cut too much away. This leaves his nails always a little too long.

I realized it was time to teach him the sanding board.

Here is one of my favorite students, Bandit, taking care of his front nails himself on the sanding board. As you can see, he is enjoying himself.

“Nails part #2” will instruct you on how to build a sanding board.

“Nails part #3” will outline how to teach your dog to love sanding his or her own nails on your very own sanding board!

Stay tuned!