Day Two

At 3 AM, Chewy delivers a volley of barks from the crate. I roll out of bed and take him outside, where, after a few sniffs, he pees. This is a big step forward. The puppy did not soil the crate, woke us up, and urinated outside. He’s on his way. It’s not unusual for…

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Day One

Our first priority for puppy Chewy is potty training. At 13 weeks of age, he can control his bladder for an hour or longer during the day. His breeder has already started to potty train him, and thankfully, acclimated him to a crate. Our job is to further that training. Puppies that have learned to…

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Three steps to a successful partnership

1. CONFINE. Place your dog in a crate or exercise pen when you cannot supervise him or when you would like to relax. Cover the crate with a sheet or blanket. Ignore barking and crying. Dogs are less fussy in crates if they are exercised before they go in them and if they are given…

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How to give cues

Consistency in dog training means delivering cues the same way each time. Use the same syntax. Tonal variations will have an impact — bright tones will bring up the dog, while low ones will slow him down. Cues sharply delivered may prevent an error if your timing is good, but raising your voice is no…

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How to do homework

If you practice between private lessons or group classes, you will progress quickly and develop a teaching relationship with your dog based on attention and play. How to set up good practice sessions Practice for 10-15 minutes per day. Choose a time of day when you are in good spirits and your dog is awake.…

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Wean your dog off food reinforcement in training

Sometimes life puts you in situations in which you can’t reward your dog with food — you may not have treats on you, but your dog may have done something great. You may be tired of wearing a treat bag every time you take a walk, or you may have forgotten it. You may have…

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Three ways to get rid of the food bowl

Providing your dog’s food through toys enriches his life.[/caption] Dogs appreciate the opportunity to hunt and scavenge for their daily food ration. Dogs that are challenged at mealtime, whether through training from the hand or the chance to play with an interactive toy, often behave better because their lives are stimulating. Using treat dispensing toys…

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Touch gives dogs the power of choice in greetings

People often say hello to dogs in ways that are confusing or threatening, especially when they stand over and reach for them. Many dogs don’t like being touched on the top of the head. If a dog is afraid of people, overhand petting should always be avoided.  Fearful dogs benefit from the option to say hi…

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Help a frightened dog learn to love strangers

Dogs that rush the door, bark, and threaten strangers benefit from counter-conditioning. Essentially, we help the dog associate strangers with things he appreciates, like food. If the stranger does nothing to frighten or upset him, the dog will connect interactions with people he does not know with an abundant delivery of food he loves. Step…

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Help a dog overcome fear of an object

Dogs may be fearful of environmental objects like garbage cans, cars, and statues. Your goal is to help the dog get used to the object without scaring him. This process is called developing a conditioned emotional response through classical conditioning. Help your dog change how he feels about something scary 1. Determine the distance at…

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