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Crate Training Your Dog
When I discuss the concept of crate training with pet dog owners they often look a little befuddled. I know exactly what they are thinking in most cases before they even open their mouths. Pet owners think of their dogs as family members, loved ones in some cases even our furry kids. Why would we want to put them in a crate?
There are many benefits to crate training a dog, especially if you have a puppy or a young dog and you are in the process of house training. I often ask people, especially those with small children, if they ever used the baby pens. “Of course they reply, I would have never had any peace or quiet”. Well a crate for a puppy is the same concept as a baby pen. You would never leave your baby or child unsupervised, free to wander the rooms of your house where they could injure themselves. Puppies, like small children need a place they can go when you are not available to watch every move they make, a safe place where they can hear, see and smell you without being underfoot. A crate is a safe, quiet place your dog can go when they want peace and quiet, to snooze or just to withdraw into their own sanctuary. I have never met a dog that does not enjoy their crate if the crate is introduced into their world correctly.
There are many benefits of crate training your dog not just for housebreaking but also to prevent destructive behaviors such as chewing, counter surfing and trash exploring, especially while you are away. When a pet is injured or sick a crate is an ideal location for them to rest and, should you ever need to evacuate your dog you will be grateful if you can safely contain your dog on a long journey, in a shelter or in compliance with a hotel’s pet policy.
Contrary to what many may think, a crate is not a tool for punishment, or a long term confinement tool. With training, an adult dog can remain in a crate for up to 8 hours but will need plentiful amounts of exercise before and after crating and an assortment of toys for mental stimulation during its time in the crate.
There are many different sizes, models and varieties of crates. The more durable crates designed for airline travel, in my opinion, do not make the best crate for home use as they tend to be bulky and restrict the dog’s view of their environment. For my dogs, I use the canvas/mesh style of crates for their daily use and that is where they often disappear to be alone while we read or watch television. This design provides for shaded visibility, they fold easily, are durable and can be moved or stored with little problem. Many pet stores provide the metal wire crates that collapse and can be easily moved around the house. These are good crates for large dogs and dogs that may chew. They also come with accessories such as water bowls, fans to keep your pooch cool, and fabric covers to blend them into your home décor.
To start the crate training process make going into the crate a game. Dogs should be encouraged, not forced, into their crates. To generate interest feed them in the crate with the door left open, throw in the odd treat or toy and within a short period of time you will find them happily exploring the inside of their new place delighted to find a surprise. As time goes by gently close the door giving them treats for staying quietly inside, progress on to actually fastening the door and then extend the period of time you leave them in their crate. Remember, offer treats and toys to go in and do not let them out if they are barking or pawing at the door. You want to let them out when they are calm and quiet or they will learn very quickly that if they bark or paw the door opens. If you work on this and make it a fun happy place for your dog you will soon find them choosing to snooze in their crate as happy as can be.
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Dog Training 101: How to Train ANY DOG the Basics
Does telling your dog to stop barking or to stay put give you a headache? If you’re having some difficulties in making your dog follow your simple orders and if you’re already feeling that your dog is moving away from you, then it isn’t the end for you because you can be assured that there is a better way to make your dog follow and that is through clickers dog training. This kind of training will make you feel that you are still the master and that your pet is not that mean after all.
Clicker training a dog is said to be an effective way to train a dog to follow simple to complex commands. This has to be used appropriately and consistently so that you can yield positive results. If you came from a situation in which you were always nagging at your dog, you have to brush off that attitude before you start clicker training your dog because it will never have a positive result if you combine clicker training with your nagging because the clicking sound that you use here should give a positive signal to your pet and not a negative one. It’s really a matter of clicking and giving your dog the reward that it deserves. Once you already know how to use the clicker appropriately, you just need to be consistent in using this device because the key here is that the dog should be well familiarized with the signal and the rewards it’s getting from you. You should start off with the basic skills like asking the dog to sit or to stay put, and you can reward the dog with simple treats. As you go from simple tricks to the more complex ones, you provide your dog with better rewards that should come after you make the clicking sound.
Clickers dog training is an easy way to make your dog follow and to make you feel that you can be a trainer too. You just need to be more patient and you can once again form a better bond with your pet and you will love your pet more than before because of the things that it can do for you, which is all because of a simple click.
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5 Tips For Basic Obedience Training With Dog Treats
Depending on what command you are working on, dog treats will be used in different ways. However, before you begin obedience training, there are a few general tips and suggestions that all dog owners should be aware of. Incorrectly timing rewards can begin to reverse your training effort. Avoid this set back and keep things moving in the right direction. When you know how and when to reward your dog you can prevent frustration and continue building a bond with your pet through training.
Training Tip #1: Timing is Vital to Proper Rewarding
Some dog owners new to training may feel that it is up to their pet to determine the success of each session. The truth is that more weight is placed on the human doing the training. This is why timing the reward is so important. You are communicating with your pet through treats. The reward must be given promptly when your dog does something right, even if it is not the entire gesture you are looking for. If you wait a few seconds, your pet will become confused about what he or she did right.
Training Tip #2: Treat Storage during Training
You do not want to allow your dog to remain focused on the treats, so it is often best to store them out of sight while training. Always put the package away after you have removed the treats you plan to use. That being said you also must be able to quickly retrieve rewards and give them to your pet when they do something right. A pocket or pouch kept on your body is a great choice for storing treats while training. Never allow your pet to go for the treats. If he or she does, calmly put them back into the correct position with a firm no.
Training Tip #3: The Clicker and Dog Treats
Dog treats are very effective training tools however did you know a clicker can help even more? When used together, your pet will have an easier time understanding what you are trying to tell him or her. The clicker emits the same click each time, reducing the likeliness for confusion and misunderstanding. Clickers are inexpensive, usually available for under $ 2 or $ 3 at your local pet supply store.
Training Tip #4: Combining Dog Treats and Praise
Although you will see progress encouraged by dog treats during obedience training, avoid the urge to reward with treats only. This will create an expectation for food rewards in your pet, and possibly begin to impact his or her weight and desire to eat actual meals. Instead, combine dog treats with praise and petting. Edible rewards should only be given for large achievements while the rest can be rewarded with praise. You might be surprised to learn just how far a positive word and affection can go with a canine.
Training Tip #5: Training Treat Size
You will probably notice that dog treats marketed for obedience training are small in size. Use this as a rule of thumb when choosing your training rewards. Never use a full size biscuit intended for snack time. You will be giving your pet multiple treats during a single training session, so consider cutting up a larger biscuit or buying dog treats that come in small portions. Remember, the point is not to feed your dog but to teach him or her.