Let the puppy Play!!!

If puppies have plenty of proper toys to play with, it is easy to teach them to ‘leave-it’ and ‘drop-it’ and tell them “all done” when it comes to the items we don’t want them chewing.

Puppies need to play. Like our human children, their job during development is PLAY!

Pax`e head in toy box

Don’t limit their toys.

Pax`e sits among the toys

Instead, expand their horizons because they need to explore and chew in order to learn what is and is not appropriate.

Because of this, we can use this play to teach them how to leave their toys, drop them, ignore them, and hopefully not guard them. And, we can prevent them finding toys like boots, shoes, socks, etc.

If they have plenty of proper toys to play with, it is easy to teach them to ‘leave-it’ and ‘drop-it’ and tell them “all done” when it comes to the items we don’t want them chewing.

Pax’e is a nine week old AussieDoodle. In teaching her to tug at my sock, she learns that commands can be fun. She learns socks are boring. And, while she may have wanted to tug with that sock instead of giving it up at first, the ‘drop-it’ command worked.

It’s never too early to start teaching, playing, having fun, and building your relationship with your pup.

Over the next several weeks/months Pax’e’s training exploits will be showcased. Sometimes with success and sometimes, maybe not.

Regardless of success, it will always be a learning process.

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.

Wayfair’s “Dreaming Dogs” Where should your dogs sleep?

It is not uncommon for clients to ask me where their dog should sleep.

Wayfair (the online retailer) apparently wanted to know too. They did some research, reached out to various dog training professionals, and the result was the article, “Dreaming Dogs, The Most Common Places Dogs Catch Z’s”

From Wayfair online

After they compiled the numbers polled and heard from the experts, it seems that the popular opinion is people want their dogs to sleep with them (maybe not always in the same bed).

 

I like to take it one step farther and ask my dogs by letting them have the choice of dog bed, floor, my bed, etc.

If your dog is potty trained, and good with his/her house manners, then let your dog have a vote –

Unless he’s just gone out and gotten skunked! (then refer to the Three Dogs Skunk Blog)

 

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.