Looks aren’t everything. More often than not, we choose which dog to get based on appearance—whichever breed or size or color appeals to us. I may have wanted a Jack Russell terrier ever since I fell in love with Eddie on the TV show Frasier. Or maybe I have found myself admiring a well-trained Border…

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Why prepare your dog for your baby? From your dog’s point of view, a baby is the strangest creature that ever was. It screams and thrashes, coos and gurgles. It smells funny. It also consumes the energy of previously devoted pet owners. Weeks go by and suddenly your once-well-behaved dog is chewing the furniture. There…

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Size matters. Your Chihuahua may love Boxers and your Rottie mix may adore Dachshunds. But, when little and big play together, keep a close watch. Big dogs can unintentionally harm small dogs—and on the rare occasions when friendly play escalates into a scuffle, the smaller dog is at risk for serious injury or death. If…

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Why do my dogs quarrel? All dogs squabble occasionally. Mostly, dogs who live together get into scraps over stuff they both want: Food, bones, toys, human attention, and sleeping spots. Like us, they also have individual preferences and moods, and might be having a grumpy day or a headache. What should I do? If the…

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What’s in a name? Few things are more irritating than shouting your dog’s name over and over to no effect. Don’t assume your dog is ignoring you on purpose, though—especially if you have a puppy or recently adopted dog. Unlike people, dogs don’t automatically learn their names after hearing it just once or twice. Four…

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Why teach fetch? Fetch is terrific exercise—and a tired dog is a better behaved and happier dog. It’s also an easy way to exercise your dog if your time or personal mobility is limited. Think of it as lawn-chair exercise: It can be done sitting down. How to train it. Start at your dog’s starting…

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First, forget the myth. For decades, dog owners have been told never to play tug-of-war with their dogs because it increases aggression in the dog. This isn’t true—every study done refutes the notion. Playing tug-of-war doesn’t turn your dog into a predator; he already is one. The game simply provides a safe and enjoyable outlet…

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Why bother with kitchen & mealtime training? Because you want to teach your dog not to be underfoot while you are busy in the kitchen, and not to beg for food or steal food off the counter or table. Train for good mealtime manners when you have time for it. Thanksgiving Dinner, for example, is…

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Why bother with training walks? Because every walk is a training walk: Your dog will learn something. Why not determine what that will be? Besides, you and your dog will both enjoy your walks far more this way. How to prepare. Step 1. Decide the following: What will you do when another dog crosses your…

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Why bother training for public spaces? So you can confidently and safely take your dog with you anywhere, and make the experience an enjoyable one for you both. How to prepare. Step 1. Think about the types of challenges you are likely to encounter: In a pet store: Bins full of goodies, other dogs, people…

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