Posts Tagged ‘a’

11188397_818078361580910_7762837488932187458_nIf your dog is barking on leash and it’s ruining your walks,.. then I have three tips that will help you get control over your vocal dog..

There are many reasons your dog will bark while out for a walk..but the main reason is because he or she hasn’t been taught otherwise.. so here are the tips that will get you back in the driving seat and on the path to enjoying your walks again with your fuzzy faced friend.

#1. You want to interrupt your dog while he is thinking about barking..not after he has started..and then redirect your dog to a more appropriate behavior..timing is everything.

#2. The closer you are to what makes your dog bark the harder it will be for you to get him or her to focus on you and your high value food rewards..so the second your dog thinks about barking..move away from what is attracting your dogs attention and work your eye contact and get a sit..

#3. Use high value food rewards like cooked chicken or cut up pieces of hot dog.. anything that your dog loves but don’t usually get..if your rewards are valuable enough to your dog it will be easier for you to get their attention and work them around the distraction…first at a distance where your dog does not react and then move slowly closer to the thing that makes your dog bark.. You want to set your dog up to succeed ..not to fail…

That’s it for today..I hope you are all enjoying this nice weather and I’ll talk to ya soon.

All the best,

Harley

aggressive-rottweiler-rGood morning and Happy St.Patties Day,

“May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows your dead.”

Yesterday I posted to Face Book the question, ” What do you do when a strange dog charges you and your dog and you have no opportunity for retreat?”

There was a lot of great discussion about this and I want to thank everyone who took the time to leave a comment.

Now let me start by saying that it is important for people to know that in 9 out of 10 cases the dogs doing the charging are not killers.. simply soft nerved,.fearful dogs, that lack any kind of meaningful training,, and have learned that showing aggression will cause the person or dog to take off and leave them alone..

You only have a few seconds to decide if this is one of those dogs who are just weak-willed and nervous or high drive and confident.. and you have to take action immediately.. I can size a dog up pretty quickly because I have a lot of experience dealing with dogs of all temperaments, the information is in their eyes..and body posture..

Dogs who are just trying to drive you off will have the hair standing up on their backs and will look like they are either about to run or about to bite you..

If you hold your ground, look directly at them, and in a loud commanding voice yell..”Go Home!!” stomp the ground and take a step toward them..they may just do that..

Carry some chicken chunks or liver treats and toss them at the dog.. they may very well forget about you and begin searching out the treats.. and this is your cue to back away slowly keeping your eye on the dog always..

The ones that don’t immediately take off will circle you ..trying to find an opportunity to pinch ya..and if you turn with them,.. keeping your dog behind you at all times.. shorten your grip on the leash so your dog has no chance of getting around you.. you don’t want your dog getting into a fight.. it is your job as leader to protect your dog at all cost..

In most cases the offending dog will not come too close.. but might keep circling, barking and acting tough for quite some time.. in this case you should slowly and I mean slowly back out of their territory..the one thing you don’t want to do is run.. you can’t out run a dog and running will only kick in their prey drive and increase the chances of you getting bitten.. even though you may be scared..don’t show this to the dog..they can sense strength and confidence so make and hold direct eye contact.. and defensive body posture.. you can break down later.

Now what about that one time out of ten when the strange dog that is charging you is a confident, high drive dog with nerves of steel that is not afraid to attack humans..

Let me begin by saying that no amount of yelling, treat throwing.. or stomping the ground is going to stop this dog.. you have only one choice.. you have to go to battle with this dog.. and losing is not an option.. there are many dogs quite capable of killing you and your dog.. Rottweilers, Pit bulls, Dobermans..German Shepherds among others come to mind..

Now unlike the first category of charging dog, this dog will not be barking or have any hair raised up.. they will be laser targeted on you or your dog.. and you must ready yourself for what’s about to happen.. I always carry a 4 foot hardwood walking stick with me.. a two foot tire thumper is good too..but always have it out..

I always have a couple of steel carabiners attached to my belt so I can clip my dog to me ..and have the use of both hands.. you want to prevent your dog from running away..

Ready yourself in your best fighting stance..and when the dog is about 15 feet from you wave your arm out to the side ..this will cause the dogs prey drive to target your arm.. and at the last possible moment when the dog has left the ground and is flying to bite your arm.. step to the side and use your stick to whack the dog hard in the ribs or on top of the head.. this will not in all likely hood cause the dog to retreat.. but it sends the message that you are not going down without a fight.. then you don’t wait.. you attack the dog with all you got.. repeated blows to the top of the head right between the eyes… the ribs..the groin.. usually the dog will give up if it hasn’t bitten you after 3 or 4 attempts..

If the dog gets to you and grabs you by the leg.. wrap your arms around the dog’s neck and choke it to death.. not until it passes out..because a dog that is hell-bent on killing you or your dog will go right back to fighting as soon as it wakes up.. and usually the dog will wake up quickly.. so you might not have time to get away…

If it gets hold of your arm then whack it hard on the head right between the eyes.. usually the dog will give up after about 3 or 4 good knocks on the head..

If you have lost your footing and are in a bad way.. curl up in the fetal position and cover the back of your neck and throat.. with your hands and arms.. keep yelling for help.. you will most likely be badly bitten ..but you may very well survive..

Remember.. don’t run…it will be hard to keep from doing this ..but your life could very well depend on it..

If the dog attacks your dog, the same applies.. continue to whack the dog until it quits and runs off or the owner comes to control the dog.. one thing you should never do is pick your dog up.. this will hamper your ability to fight..and makes your face a target for the charging dog.. keep your dog behind you if possible.. I always attach a couple of steel carabiers to my belt.. and clip my dogs leash to it so I can have the use of both hands..

Pepper spray can work well.. but dogs don’t respond to it like humans .. so be warned it may not stop a high drive determined dog..but a full can of spray to the face will make them think twice about what’s going on..

Regardless of the outcome .. if possible talk to the dogs owner.. be kind..the dog may have gotten away from them by accident.. while it is still his responsibility,. try to work it out..

If the owner is just as hostile as his dog..then call the cops.. and let the chips fall where they may..

A word of caution for those of you who would like to think you would shoot the dog.. let me say this..

I was raised with a rifle in one hand and a dog in the other.. and I can tell you it is not as easy as you might think to shoot any animal that is charging straight at you.. your adrenalin is high, and even if you are a crack shot.. you only have a few seconds to react.. and there is a high probability that you will miss.. and a stray bullet or ricochet bullet in an urban setting can kill or injure by standers.. the risk to others is too high.. so please leave your side arms at home.

Again thank you all for taking the time to comment on this serious issue.. and if you have questions let me know in the comments below..

All the best,

Harley

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I was talking with a friend of mine this morning and she asked me what one thing is most important in order to have well-trained dogs..

I thought about this for a moment and realized that the one thing I do that makes all the difference in how any dog responds to me is that I always work with them when my mind is clear and calm..

I have found a way to shut out thoughts about yesterday and tomorrow..

and to just be present..in that moment of time…

It’s in these moments of mindful awareness that we can both share peace…

Dogs are masters of living in the moment.. but because of the stress of living in our world they often have difficulty calming their mind.. this is when we start seeing behavior problems..

People have difficulty with this concept.. but can experience life in the moment.. for example..

If a soldier is going into combat ..there are no thoughts of tomorrow or yesterday..they are focused on the task at hand..

so to is the person who jumps out of an airplane..

But how can someone get into the present moment from the safety of the living room couch?..

I would like for you to try this 30 second experiment.. sit quietly in your living room or any room for that matter.. and focus on a spot on the floor.. don’t move your eyes from that spot or move your body.. this is important because if your body is moving..your mind is not settled….

Now become aware of the weight of gravity pulling on your body holding you to the chair or floor..

Now focus on a sound in the room..

the hum of the refrigerator ..

the ticking of a clock..

If there is no sound..then the white noise you hear in your head…

Now just hold that focus and mindful awareness of sight,feeling,and sound.. if a thought creeps into your mind that’s o.k..just go back to focusing …

As you hold this mindful awareness for the 30 seconds try to think about what you will do tomorrow.. you will find it is very hard to do.. practice this daily and work it up so you can hold this focus and awareness for 5 minutes at a time..

Then let your dog into the room..don’t look at your dog or speak to them.. just go into this mindful awareness.. you will be surprised how your dog reacts to it.. in most cases your dog will lay down and go to sleep.. and when they do you will know that you have connected with your dog in that present moment.. and you both will feel the peace..

Your training will grow exponentially.. I guarantee it..

I would love to answer any questions you might have, or discuss with you how living in the moment can vastly improve the relationship you have with your dogs.. contact me anytime.. and have a great day!

Harley

two dogs meeting for the first time
I have been asked to talk a bit about the best way to introduce two dogs without having conflict..

Having rescued many dogs over the years this is how I manage those first meetings and begin to foster relaxation in times of great emotional intensity.. it would be the same if someone were to come visit with a dog that has no history with mine..

I always take the dogs on at least a 30 minute walk..

with both dogs on leash and someone walking the new dog..

but I don’t walk them side by side..

I walk them in single file..that way there is less stress about being close to a strange dog..

By being in single file the trailing dog gets to sniff the behind of the front dog.. to check him out..which is what dogs do right?

Then at some point I switch and let the front dog trail behind and sniff the others butt.. I would do this several times during the walk..

What is most important here is to keep moving.. if you stop and stand still too much.. tension and stress can trigger aggression…

If one dog pees or poops let the other dog check it out..

Dogs who get the opportunity to do this are more likely to want to sync up and continue walking forward.. which is what they would do in a hunting situation.. once each dog has had opportunities to check the other out.. then I would move both dogs to a side by side position.. not next to one another..not yet..

I would place myself between the dogs.. but side by side moving in the same direction..sometimes one dog will play bow and you might be tempted to let them go play..

I think it is too soon …and you will be running the risk of something going wrong..

Also I don’t try to correct barking or other behaviors.. because the dog is just communicating his feelings about being highly charged in the presence of this new dog..they are just letting off steam so to speak..

Remember to keep moving..two dogs that are standing still and face to face will have a hard time dealing with the intensity of the situation..my job is to help the dogs stay calm and moving..

Playing is not so important as being able to exist in each others company without conflict.. when you get home ..they should be relaxed and able to handle being inside together.. remember to keep the dogs relaxed and calm when inside.

Thanks for reading my post..and like always if you have any questions just let me know.. Happy New Year !

Harley

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In this training video I demonstrate a handy dandy dog training technique that will show you how to get your dog to come without saying a word.

You might have experienced a situation where your dog was off-leash and refused to come when you called them.

I know how this can grind your gears. 🙂

You might get angry and maybe even tempted to chase your dog.

There is a shortcut to getting your dog to come to you without saying a word that works in most cases because it builds desire in your dog.

Building desire for something is key to any successful dog training program and in this short video I will show you how to get your dog to come without saying a word.

I would love to hear what you think about this little know dog training technique and if you try it let me know how it worked out for you.

Leave a comment and let’t talk about it.

Talk soon

Harley

dog and hunter

 

Back in the late seventies I was, as my Uncle Eldon would say,. still wet behind the ears.

I decided that I no longer wanted to train dogs in the fashion that was prescribed by my Uncle, who was the dog trainer in the family.

 

I had become disillusioned with the practice of dominance based dog training, and began to form my own way of thinking about dogs and as it turned out my philosophy was the polar opposite of what Eldon believed.

Eldon was of the old school mind-set that said if the dog did not obey, or showed aggression to family members, he needed to be taken in a notch.

Which didn’t mean Eldon injured the dogs in any way,  no, he was very careful about how he dispensed what he considered discipline,.because they were highly valued assets that required care and protection.

In his words, “ A well-trained dog that can hunt is worth his weight in gold.“

His go-to punishment for bad behavior was,  if he thought the dog was being disrespectful, or willfully disobedient, he would give it a swift kick in the ass, and give the dog the veiled threat,

“If I have to talk to you again, I am going to let the ax handle do the talking.“

I had come to realize that what Eldon saw as respect in the dogs was really fear. The dogs always obeyed but they would come to him low to the ground, ears back, tail tucked in.

I could see the stress the dogs were under, and it made me feel bad for the dogs, and frankly pissed off at Eldon.

I did not voice my concerns, because to do so would have been an exercise in futility, and to my Uncles way of seeing things, disrespectful, therefore worthy of a swift kick in the ass.

At this point I had already trained a couple of my neighbors dogs to herd cattle, and I had brought home an eight week old , female Australian Shepherd pup, who I named Tiny, and had trained her to herd the cattle, my way.

Now back in 1978 my way of training a dog was not a method that could be named, and for the next 35 years remained un-named, and I was not even thinking about dog training philosophy, methodology, or even why dogs did what they did,. I was not that deep of a thinker,.. I just let the dog be true to his temperament, and I shaped behaviors, like come, sit, down, and stay.. as they presented themselves during daily life,.. and I based all this on those times when I saw that the dogs were their happiest and most dog like.

When they were hunting or herding.

The idea struck me one evening as we readied our weapons and moved from building to building, gathering traps and the supplies we would need to spend the night in the camp we had built at the end of the trap line, some eight miles up the stream.

I suddenly noticed the dogs were much more vocal than usual, with was not unusual,  I just had never noticed it before, and then…

The thought hit me like a ton of bricks.

When my Uncle`s dogs were not working with either hunting or herding they would just lay around and never showed any what I would call enthusiasm for what was going on,.unless someone came in the driveway, or a deer would come out into the field., then they would light up like a Christmas tree.

I realized that the dogs seemed to know what we were going to do, that preparation for the hunt was happening, and they seemed to perk up in spirit, they had an anxious anticipation about them… their normally fearful nature seemed to disappear,..and they became more vocal in their attempts to communicate with us.. and it wasn’t until much later that I further realized that the dogs knew what we were going to do, even before we did.

Then the thought I had earlier suddenly solidified, and I understood.

The spirit, or heart of the dog resides in the hunt.

The next morning the dogs would be electric with energy and enthusiasm to get started.., they required a little coaxing to settle down enough to eat, and sometimes we just fed them by hand along the way.

They acted like puppies again, full of life and energy.

They would walk behind and then charge ahead searching for things to run up a tree or corner,.

They would respond to our whistles and calls, circling back, moving through the brush, and with every bound through the snow you could see the layers of stored stress melt away as they used it to organize themselves in concert with our movements,..reading us like a book.

I observed the dogs after the hunt and regardless of if it was successful or not, they seemed to be re-born, and the fear and stress that had burdened them was suddenly gone…at least for a short time.

I began to train my pups with the hunt in mind, I would take them to the woods and walk around, play with them, and  let them be dogs, games like hide and seek, find the stinky cheese, tug of war, and I always let them win, because it made them so happy to run off with that old sock tied to a rubber hose.. I never considered that I should teach them that I am the boss.

I was not their boss, I didn’t want to be.

I was the one they depended on to provide outlets for their stress, by teaching them how to hunt, and to shape their behavior with the words I used to communicate my intentions.

All this I accomplished simply by playing with my dogs in a way that spoke to their true nature as hunters.

In return they give me respect and life long trust.

I knew dogs lived in the moment, but I was missing some information that if I had know about it back then would have changed my perception about not only dogs,.. but myself.

I now know that what I was seeing in my Uncles dogs was stored emotional energy that manifests itself as stress in the dog’s body and mind, and that energy is jam-packed with information that is vital to the dog’s ability to learn, and they are only truly able to release it and connect with us when they are free to express their true nature as hunters, and work with us as team mates.

All the best,

Harley

 

Top 3 Reasons Why Little Dogs Get A Bad Reputation

crazy pomerainianI was standing in line at the cashier at one of the local malls where I live and I happened to be standing behind a lady holding a tea-cup chihuahua.

The cashier noticed the little guy and before the owner could say anything she reached out and attempted to pet the dog. Well you would have thought that lady had a crocodile in her arms. The dog took to yipping and squirming, growling and snapping.

The way it was behaving brought to mind a picture like this

crazy dog reuse

Well the lady behind the counter just sheepishly said, ” Little dogs never did like me anyway”

The dogs owner quickly apologized for Muffins’ behavior, paid for her things and left the mall. I could tell she was very upset and embarrassed by her little dogs psychotic behavior, as she was real close to crying.

It’s unfortunate but true that aggression in little dogs is not really taken very seriously, until something really bad happens, but by then..well as the old saying goes,

“No good closing the barn door after the horse gets out.”

 

Top 3 Reasons Little Dogs Get A Bad Reputation 
1- Nobody reports it when a little dog bites them.

It might be because of embarrassment especially with men. I can only imagine calling animal control and tell them that a chihuahua bit me and was mean to me. When people don’t take aggression in small dogs seriously and wait until it’s too late and the dog bites someones little kid, and the family sues, then the dog gets put down.

2- Little Dogs Get Away With Going “BOOM BOOM” In The House

As an owner of two large German Shepherds and one, 115 lb Rottweiler cross, I can say unequivocally that it would only take one time of them dumping a load, ( and I mean LOAD!), on the floor to convince me that my dogs need crate training. Little dogs get away with this for years..yes I said years, because, well,.. little dog,.. little mess,.. enough said.

3- Little Dogs That Believe They Are Big Dogs

Dogs have no grasp of the obvious.

That fact becomes frighteningly apparent with a lot of small dogs I have encountered.

Why else would a 10 pound Shih Tzu run up on a 150 lb Rottweiler and challenge him while he’s eating.

It scares the shit out of me when I see little dogs do this.

If they only knew.

Little Dogs Need Balance Too.

As with all things there are two sides to the same coin.

I have seen many dog owners happily walking their little dogs in the park, playing tug of war, and fetch the stick. I am happy that they understand that physical and mental exercise is every bit as important for little dogs as it is for large ones, and just because their dog can’t really pull on the leash hard enough to be an issue, they still take the responsibility to train their lovable little pooch to walk properly on lead.

One last word on this topic.

I have always been one to mind my own business and I never give advice unless I am asked for it., but every time I see someone carrying a little dog in their arms, I have to fight the urge to say to them, ” For the love of God, put that dog on the ground and let it use its legs.

Carrying a dog in your arms is a great way to ensure your dog will develop behavioral issues. And even the small ones can be a big pain in the you know what.

Now if you have a little dog or a big one for that matter and they are using your house as their personal bathrooms, you will want to teach them to love the crate, not only is the crate a great way to manage unwanted behavior it provides your dog with something they crave., and that is a place to call their own where they can rest and feel safe.

Maybe you already have a crate but your dog hates being in there so you don’t use it.

Teaching your dog to love the crate will take a bit of time and if you need help then I recommend you get my report on how to properly crate train your dog.

I have trained many dogs to love going in the crate and spending time.

You can read more about the benefits of properly teaching your dog to go in the crate by going here NEXT.

Ultimate Guide To Crate Training Your Puppy or Dog

Need more tips on how to improve your little dogs behavior then go here NEXT!

5 Tips to Improve Your Dogs Behavior Starting TODAY! 

Talk soon,

Harley

 

 

 

stressed dog reuse

I am going to get a little “sciency” on ya for a minute or two..yeah I can be a nerd like that..but in order to help you understand how your dog “senses” the world, I gotta put on my lab coat and talk about energy.

 

In the dictionary energy is described as a source of power.

An example of this would be as follows

In the world of physics potential energy is described as… the energy of a body or a system with respect to the position of the body or the arrangement of the particles of the system. 

In other words potential energy is energy waiting to be released.

So to understand how a dog experiences the world he lives in, we will be talking about your dog as being a biological living system, and the energy that drives their behavior is,.. how they feel at the moment about the emotional energy  of what ever it is they are attracted to..be it a squirrel, person, or another dog.

We are much the same  as our dogs.. living systems of emotional energy.

Sadly,.. most humans don’t live in the moment,.. so we take the long way round, we think and feel,.. and then make a decision based on our emotions.

Humans absorb the energy the world gives off through 5 distinct senses..

1. Sight

2. Smell

3. Feel

4. Hearing

5. Taste

Dogs use these same five senses as we do., as well as some that can’t be quantified..like a sixth sense or gut feeling.

In other words,..

Dogs and humans will have a feeling about something or someone long before they actually have time to think about it.

I am sure you have heard someone say, “I just knew something was up..I had a bad feeling about that guy.”

I believe it is this sense that can’t be measured that allows a dog to sniff out cancer, or to alert their owners of an impending seizure.

To put it in more simple terms, a dog takes in the energy that the world gives off, as vibrations..and in doing so one of two things happens.

Either the energy flows through the dog and has no effect on the dog or..

The energy is left unresolved and gets stored in the dog’s body as stress.

This can happen in times when your dog sees a squirrel or another dog and he starts to react by going into prey drive and you drag him away.

Dogs store stress as potential energy,.. it’s like a charge in their internal battery, and the stress is used to help the dog in times of intense activity,..when they need to exert a lot of effort, like the next time they are confronted by the dreaded squirrel, or that dog that just gets their energy going every time they meet.

Now in nature there is nothing inherently wrong with stress..it’s what allows a dog or wolf to hunt dangerous animals much larger then themselves,.. like moose or deer.

The problem is that domesticated dogs do not have the opportunity to hunt large game, so it is in our best interest to keep their stress levels low, and maintain a high level of relaxation..a relaxed dog who has very little stored up potential energy is much easier to handle when a high level of excitement takes place, such as seeing another dog or coming upon a squirrel.

Think of it like this, your dog’s body is a system,.. though which the energy of the world flows.

If your dog is relaxed their body is a wide open channel,.. and large amounts of energy can flow through easily.

If your dog is tense, full of stress and fear, their channel is narrowed,.. and if the same large amounts of energy is pumped through it, the flow is constricted and there is a dramatic increase in pressure, thus producing a higher risk that your dog is going to “blow up”, emotionally speaking.

This is why the best trained dogs will suddenly take off after a dog that strayed onto the property, growl or snap at their owners after years of having no issues with unwanted behavior.

So how do we make sure that we can drain our dogs battery so that their energy channels are wide open,.. therefore reducing the risk of blowing up.

It is really very simple.., the next time you take your dog for a walk and he sees a squirrel or other dog.., and starts to react..instead of dragging him off,,. thus insuring he will have unresolved stress about the situation, try this instead…pull out a tug toy..

Get his attention on you and the toy… and when the dog has past or the squirrel is up the tree…have a rousing game of tug of war, and remember to let your dog win..

This way your dogs stress will be relieved through the natural flow of energy during the prey drive inducing game of tug of war…and in time your dog will learn that this is what it feels like to chase the squirrel, or connect with that dog, and he will start to be more attracted to you as the source to resolve his feelings, and in time,.. looking to you will become an automatic response to highly charged energy situations.

So to sum it up, we have discussed how our dogs are feeling and thinking animals, and it should be your goal to help your dog be relaxed enough to respond to highly charged emotional energy with feelings..and engage their prey drive to make sure they don’t have time to think..

When a dogs goes from feeling (emotional energy).. to thinking( acting on instinct)..it is nearly impossible to get them to respond to you..and it is during these moments of instinct.. that a dog can get into all sorts of trouble in the domesticated world he lives in.

Thanks for stopping by and if you have questions or comments leave them below, I want to hear what you think.

All the best,

Harley

Resource:  Natural Dog Training.Com

 

Check This Out!

How To Raise A Bombproof Puppy

Posted: February 21, 2015 in Puppy Training
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

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Listen, do you hear that?

Scratch, scratch, ah-oooh!

That’s the sound of your new puppy searching for answers.

Scratch, scratch, scratch.

You are beginning to realize that raising a puppy is damn hard work, and you are worried about getting it right. After all you don’t want to make any mistakes and end up with a dog that get’s into trouble.

I know you want the best for your puppy but you worry that you won’t have time for obedience classes, and proper exercise, and all the information you searched out on the internet has only left you more confused.

One trainer says you have to teach your pup that you are the boss. Never let her go in or out the door before you, and if she is disobedient then toss her on her side and pin her to the ground until she submits to your Alpha status. Another says to give your pup a cookie when she is doing what you want, and ignore her when she is being bad.

What if I told you that all these trainers are wrong.

What if I told you that there’s a better way to make sure you never make any mistakes with training you new puppy, well maybe minimal mistakes, that are very easy to correct and have no negative emotional effect on your fuzzy faced friend, and takes up very little of your valuable time.

Lots of new dog owners face these same struggles, but the ones who succeed are the ones that found a coach that understands what they are going through, because they have a long history of raising puppies and have proven that they can raise happy and well-adjusted puppies into adult dogs.

Three Important Principles to Remember When Training a Puppy

There is much more to understanding the best ways to raise and train a puppy, and if you want to know more you can always contact me through the comment section below, but for now I will outline three of the main things to remember.

#1. The most important thing is to teach your pup what to do with all that energy.

Your new pup is full of vim and vigor and has a relentless need to sniff, taste, and see all the things in her environment. What is important for you to remember is that while physical exercise is a must, it is even more critical for you to provide emotional exercise for your pup, and one way to drain her energy is to play games that engage her prey drive, games like tug of war, and pushing. Be sure to follow the links to find out exactly how to do each exercise.

Important to note: When playing tug of war with your pup, go easy on her little teeth, just hold onto the tug toy and let her do the pulling. Tug is a great way to re-direct her from biting and mouthing things she shouldn’t. The same goes for pushing,. at first you should just apply a little resistance, and as she grows she will become more enthusiastic for the push. The pushing technique demonstrates what the little girl experienced with her Mama when she struggled against her litter mates to get a drink of life-giving milk. Pushing with your pup will help you stay bonded with her in much the same fashion as she did with her Mother.

These exercises should be done with your pup on a long line, for her protection, just drop the line and forget about it, and focus on having fun with your pup. Encourage your pup to chase you around the yard or follow you for tasty treats.

By tapping into your pups natural prey drive, or the desire to chase and bite things, you can connect with your pup on an emotional level, and build a strong foundation that will help to ensure your pup is attracted to you in times during their life when things get intense in the human world they live in.

#2. Teach Your Pup How To Relax

The next thing you will want to do is to make sure your pup has plenty of time to just lie around doing nothing. There is going to be times when her energy is high, and times when it is low, and by taking the time to structure these times so her behavior is shaped in accordance to these arcs will go a long way toward having the kind of success you want.

One way to do this is to try your best to make sure all her high energy activities are done outside, don’t be concerned about obedience at this point there will be plenty of time for that later on. Right now you want to focus on teaching her when and where to let her energy out, and when and where she should relax.

When she is inside, this is the time to relax and just chill, this is the time to give her a bone to chew on, or gently massage and soften her muscles into a fluffy lump of relaxation.

#3. Guard Your Pup From Stress, and Resolve it When it Happens

Your pup is going to absorb stress during the day just by virtue of being alive.

You will want to observe how her experiences in the world make her feel,  and you will get to know when your pup is stressed because her behavior will reflect her emotional turmoil.

She might run hog-wild around the house, barking or growling, she may even be submissive, or become physically tense. This means that you have exposed her to things she can’t handle, and you will want to try to not let things go that far again.

Tips For Preventing Stress In Your Puppy

1. Instead of taking your pup down town on busy streets, take her for a walk though the woods or in a quiet park.

2. Dog parks are bad business for puppies, instead get to know other like-minded people who have pups around the same age as yours and arrange play dates.

3. Get to know the signs that your pup needs some rest, and don’t fall into the trap that says you have to keep your pup busy with training and socialization., rest, relaxation, and following this simple outline without placing demands on your pup is more important at this stage.

4. Consider each activity that you are going to expose your pup to and ask yourself if this is going to produce stress for your pup, and keeping in mind that anything done inside is going to be more intense for your pup than it is for you, and if the answer is yes, then consider your alternatives.

For example if you are having friends over, it would help your pup if you met them outside, or even go for a short walk around the block together. Another example would be if you are going down town to shop, it would be better if your pup stayed behind in her crate, with a tasty bone to chew on.

How To Resolve Stress In Your Pup

All that energy has to go somewhere and if you want your pup to stay in that emotional flow then you have to give that energy direction. The exercises I outlined above, pushing and tug of war will certainly release any stored up stress your pup might have, and all you need to do is re-direct your pup onto one of these more positive outlets for their energy.

So, congratulations on your new pup, and remember you are not in this alone, if you have questions please let me know what they are in the comment section below, and I will be happy to answer them for you.

You can get some more great dog training tips that will improve your dogs behavior when you follow this link

5 Tips To Improve Your Dogs Behavior Starting Today

All the best,

Harley

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How To Hard Wire Your Puppy For A Solid Off Leash Recall

I was asked yesterday for some tips on training your dog to be reliable off leash and one of the ways I begin to bond with my pups is to take advantage of the period of time during a pups life when they imprint on their Mother, and litter mates, and the humans who interact with them.

Imprinting is a way of learning about who their mother is and how they should socialize with their siblings, in other words what it means to be a dog. It is also the time when they learn who they will mate with in the future.

This phase of imprinting takes place between the 4 to 12 week period.

Anything the pup imprints on during this stage of life is there for the life of the dog, and is very hard to un-train. This is why it is never a good idea to take a pup away from his Mother before he has time to learn how to socialize with his or her mates.

If you bring a pup home with you, let’s say at the age of 5 or 6 weeks, he or she has not had time to properly learn about what is means to be a dog and will imprint on the humans, and in fact will think they are human, and future behavior will reflect this confusion.

When introduced to other dogs the pup will not know how to socialize with these alien creatures and become fearful or suspicious and might very well show aggression.

Therefore it is important to seek out a breeder who understands the importance of this early development and keeps the pups with the mother and litter mates for at least 8 weeks, and once the pup comes home with you, continued exposure to other dogs outside your home is critical to proper socialization.

This is how you can take advantage of this stage of development and use imprinting to practically guarantee your pup will come to you every time you ask for the rest of their lives, providing you don’t ruin your relationship by using force or being unfair and abusive.

From the moment you bring your new pup home, words are not really that helpful, a pup can learn words like sit, down, come, stay.

But if you really want to make an impact on your pups future behavior you need to imprint on the pup a sound that means good things are about to happen.

For me that sound is a whistle..

Each day when I step out to go and feed my pups I begin to whistle..,you know like if you are whistling for your dog to come..3 or 4 short bursts of sound as I walk to the building where they are waiting.

They can’t see me but hear the whistle, and then all of a sudden the door opens and I am there with food, praise, tummy rubs, walks, drinks of water, toys and games, and other good things that make my pups happy..over time the pups imprint on this whistling sound, and soon they are all at the door waiting in anticipation of the good things that are coming.

Over the next 3-4 weeks the pups learn that when they hear the sound it is in their best interest to come quick so they don’t miss out on the goodies..later when they are out and about learning and experiencing life..all I have to do is come to the door and whistle..and before I know it I am surrounded by happy bouncing pups eager to see what I have for them..and will follow at my heels..and there is always something good in coming to me.

Around the age of 12 weeks I begin to use the word Come in association with the whistle, and they soon learn that the word “Come” means the same as the sound..something good is about to happen.

The whistle and the word, “Come”, becomes hard wired to mean come here quick..and will almost never fail regardless of distraction or the age of your dog, because it has become imprinted in their behavior, much like when Pavlov rang the bell and the dogs drool in anticipation of the food reward.

My pups learn that the safest and most rewarding place to be is near me..no leash or collar required.

I hope you like this post, and if you did you can let me know by liking my Page  River Valley Dog Training

 

All the best.

Harley