Monday, March 24, 2014
Little Hunter practicing some long leash recalls for the first time.
Spring has sprung as of a few days ago, but the weather certainly doesn't feel like it. Apparently, on March 21st of last year, it was 23 degrees out ... sort of depressing, but here's hoping to a nice warm summer!
Along with the approaching warm weather (or so we're told its approaching) comes more time outside with your dogs. And more time outside with your dogs is the perfect time to start working on training around distractions, and longer distances on your recalls to solidify them.
Here are a few tips if you've practiced short leash recalls, and indoor recalls, and want to take your recall training to the great outdoors:
*Utilize a 15-30 foot leash
*Start in an area that has little distraction in regards to other dogs/people
*Allow your dog some free time on that long leash (about 15 minutes) to roam around, sniff, and basically be a dog
*About 5-8 times in that 15 minutes, call your dog to come
*Reward every response, even if you have to help them with the leash to get to you (reward doesn't always have to be food - it can be a toy, a game, big time praise - use what motivates your dog)
*As they get better utilize more and more distraction
*ALWAYS remember they are a good boy/girl for coming - never call your dog to get them in trouble
*Train recall on your walks (with your regular 6 foot leash) as well to get them used to coming in all situations
Get out there, have some fun, train your dogs!
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Smart Dog Basics group class will help teach you how to start to gain control of your canine companion under distraction with all of the basics of obedience - come, stay, sit, down, heel. We also save time for question and answer including topics like house training, crate training and other "typical doggy issues". This is A MUST for all dogs, the most important class that you need to take! This is a one size fits all class, all ages, all breeds and all sizes welcome!
Class runs for 7 weeks, one hour once a week, cost is $200 plus HST. Puppies & dogs are required to have all shots.
Thursday evenings starting March 20th, 7-8pm (2 spots left)
Saturday mornings starting March 29th, 10-11am (4 spots left)
Please contact us to sign up firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website for details www.smartdogsk9.com
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
I adore working with Brandy. Do we make mistakes? Of course, no dog or person is perfect (her come to fronts leave something to be desired) ... but if you enjoy your time together, work on the mistakes and learn from them, you build your relationship to a much higher level. This is just a little fun we had together working on Heel, Give and Centre, and she loves every minute of it, even at 11 years old.
Sunday, February 23, 2014
We just want to extend a heart felt congratulations to all of the Canadian athletes that participated in the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games. You make us proud!!!!!!!!
Thursday, February 20, 2014
Small tip of the day - one of the best ways to create calm in your dog (and yes, some dogs need to be told to calm down, others do it on their own) is to teach, proof and reinforce the down/stay. It is a position that can be held for extended periods of time, and can be extremely useful when you want your dog out with you, but not being a nuisance. Teach a good, solid down/stay and you're on your way to creating calm with your dog.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
It is a question that is often asked, "Should I been heeling my dog for it's entire walk?". This is a complicated question because, in my opinion, it depends on the temperament of the dog, the reactivity level, and the amount of control that one needs on their dog in order to make the walk as "stress-less" as possible.
Any dog, regardless of size or temperament, will benefit from learning the heel position and the boundaries of it. It is an extremely useful command to have on your dog, particularly when passing distractions out on a walk. It brings the dog back to your side, under control, and with attention on the handler. I must emphasize that this should be done with a loose leash. This isn't tightening up on your dogs leash, wrapping it multiple times around your hand, and reeling them in like a fish., This is, instead, after they have learned what the command means and entails, they can get to that position without a lot of physical prompting and no pulling back or tension the owners part.
For some dogs, it is an absolute necessity, every single time they go out, to heel them for an entire walk, for if given an inch, there are those canines out there that will take three miles, regardless of how much training that you have put in. These might be hyper sensitive dogs, or reactive dogs that have a tendency to display aggressive or fearful behaviours when in the vicinity of other dogs or even people. These types of temperaments benefit from more control, the owner giving them guidance, showing them that there is nothing to fear or react to by giving them a strict set of rules that shows that the owner is in charge, and the dog needn't worry. Sometimes these dogs are just the more dominant type, with no severe issues other than being pushy, and not listening when needed. This type of temperament benefits as well from a more controlled heel rather than a loose, casual walk.
For other dogs, the nice, casual, loose leash walk works instead, but those dogs need to learn ahead of time that no pressure can be applied to the leash/collar. This means that the dog is taught the boundaries of the leash, and doesn't go beyond these boundaries with pulling or tension. These are typically the happy-go-lucky guys or the dogs who don't care too much about what's going on around them.
Regardless of how dogs are walked, they should not be allowed to pee on every rock, plant, lamp post or blade of grass, and they shouldn't be allowed to wander all over the place, between legs, tangling leashes or otherwise being a nuisance. All dogs need to be taught to respect the leash, their owners and the boundaries of their training. If you do this, it makes the walks more enjoyable, less stressful and makes for an easy to handle dog that can be controlled with little effort.
If you need help with training your dog to walk nicely on leash, heel or give you more attention while on a walk, email us to find out how we can help: email@example.com
A couple spots left in our Friday evening Feb 28th Basic Obedience class (7-8pm). Super results from this class!!! Build a better bond and communication with your dog. Contact us today to sign up firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website for details www.smartdogsk9.com