Quick & Easy Dog Training

Dog training fundamentals can be summarized by three things – your dog’s attention span, understanding of your dog and consistency in its training.

For best training results, the first tip is to be consistent. Set a list of ground rules for your dog. Your dog needs to follow every one of these rules, and if he or she is doing a good job, show positive reinforcement, and negative reinforcement should he or she disobey. Dogs know if their owners are consistent or not and treat them accordingly. Dog training can be made easier if you are a person that the dog can follow and show respect to.

The bulk of good dog training depends on how you can sustain your dog’s attention and make it maintain its focus. Dogs may respect consistent leaders, but what good is it if they don’t understand simple instructions? Your dog can pay better attention and retain it through these quick and easy exercises. Shout out the word “Watch” as your dog looks at you after you call him or her over by name. By doing this, you are reinforcing your dog’s attention as you aim for him or her to associate the word “Watch” to looking at you. A dog’s attention span can be improved, but first, drill him or her on the “Watch” technique – with success. Dog treats are for dogs and not owners, but you may want to pretend to eat one, then give the “Watch” command to your dog afterward. After you stay at the same place for a few seconds, give your dog some much-needed praise. Repeat this exercise as needed, preferably until your dog can pay attention to you for a minute. Your dog’s attention span can determine how good a student it will be.

Effective dog obedience training can truly be achieved if you know how your dog thinks. A dog’s focus is usually limited to a short period of time. This attention span usually lasts no more than twenty minutes, and once the twenty minutes is up, dogs usually become listless and unfocused. A fun training session could lead to your dog developing a better attention span. Your dog needs to appreciate training and why you are doing it for him or her. You can never have enough treats as a prize for successfully obeyed commands – and you should also sound like you mean it when you give praise. Dogs train better when they actually look forward to training.

Let this serve as a beginner’s guide – the shortest possible way to get you started on effectively training your dog for obedience. Once you’ve mastered everything there is to know about obedience training (including all of this article), you should have the rewarding feeling of being a good owner and a good obedience trainer to your dog.

German Shepherd Training

Dog training presents many challenges along the way and none more so than when training a German Shepherd. There are specific techniques needed, but the good news is that they are easily learned and the whole process can be incredibly rewarding.

Although we tend to associate this breed with policing and watch dogs, this is an extremely loyal and intelligent breed. Those who have been trained make superb pets and are great with kids.

The Alpha dog will always be instinctively sought out by the German Shepherd. This instinct came in very useful in their original roles when they were used to herd their owners’ sheep.

Being a strong figure of authority to a little puppy may seem hard, but for the training to succeed you need to take on the alpha role. You puppy needs to know who’s boss.

At the same time, only remonstrate them through tone of voice, never hit your puppy. These dogs are extremely sensitive creatures and physical abuse can leave them mentally scarred for life.

Be firm and strong and don’t lose your temper when your puppy is naughty. They will soon learn who is boss if you are firm but fair, a change in your tone of voice will soon be all that your dog needs to know he has gone too far.

All dogs love to be praised, and your German Shepherd will soon know the tones of voice for doing well and doing wrong. Praise is an essential part of training; they will be even keener to please you if they know they will be rewarded in this way. This builds a great rapport between you and your dog.

Is Your Dog Bored?

Many of the annoying habits dogs display are due to boredom. Chewing, barking, improper elimination, jumping, and even aggression can be traced to a lack of mental stimulation. This often happens when owners leave their pets home all day by themselves. If dogs have nothing with which to occupy their time, they become bored, and look for alternative ways to entertain themselves. This can lead to a host of behavioral problems.

The key is to prevent your canine from becoming bored in the first place. We’ll offer a few suggestions in this article. The following tips will not only curb your pet’s boredom, but will also make him a more pleasant companion.

Provide Plenty Of Stimulating Toys

Toys give your pet something with which to play while he’s alone. There are many different types of dog toys, and they serve different purposes. For example, chew toys are designed to withstand vigorous chewing, which dogs find stimulating. Other toys offer puzzles for dogs to solve, forcing them to use their minds. Still others combine puzzles with treats; if your pet is able to solve the puzzle, the toy will release a small treat as a reward.

These toys stimulate your dog’s mind. In doing so, they give him something on which to focus his attention, and thus help him stave off boredom.

Teach Him New Commands

When you teach your dog to respond to new commands, you’re engaging his mind. He’s forced to focus and learn something that is new to him. He needs to think ahead to respond quickly and appropriately. Many dogs consider this a welcome challenge, and will strive to respond in the way their owners desire. If you provide your pet’s favorite treats as a reward, he’ll be engaged in multiple ways.

You can also enroll him into professional obedience classes, or specific training courses. Most obedience classes will include activities that work your canine’s body and brain. Training courses can vary from therapy training, dog agility classes, and Search and Rescue (SAR) classes. These, too, stimulate your dog’s mind as well as his body.

Give Him Exercise

One of the best ways to stop your pet’s boredom is to provide him an outlet for exercise each day. A daily 20-minute walk is helpful. Two daily walks is better. The benefit of exercise is that it gives your canine an opportunity to expend the energy that builds within him. It also engages his mind since he’ll be able to enjoy the sights, sounds, and scents of his neighborhood.

Some of us do not always have the time to take our dog for a walk. Sometimes, the weather does not allow us to go out with our dog. In these situations, what can you do? Believe it or not, dog treadmills have become very popular with a lot of dog owners. Treadmills are especially popular with urban pet owners and people with very hectic schedules.

The amount of exercise your dog needs depends largely on his normal activity level. He may be content to sit around the house all day. Or, if he is naturally energetic, he may need more daily activity to keep the boredom away.

Provide Opportunities To Socialize

Owners often forget that dogs enjoy the company of their own kind. Interacting and playing with other digs is both fun and stimulating for them. For this reason, consider meeting other owners to schedule play dates for your respective pets. You can also visit dog parks where your pet can socialize and play with others while you mingle with the other owners.

If you’re away during the day, and unable to provide an outlet for socialization, dog daycare may be a good solution. It works in the same manner as daycare for young kids. You can drop your pooch off on the way to the office, and pick him up on the way home. He’ll have a chance to interact with other canines while you’re at work.

There are plenty of ways you can help your dog keep boredom at bay. The suggestions above will engage his mind, and prevent many of the most common behavioral problems from emerging.

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How To Choose The Best Flea Medicine For Your Dog

Dog flea medicines today are a far cry from the harsh chemical dips and messy powders pet owners used to use to combat fleas. The easy to use topical spot on products such as Frontline Plus are popular with pet owners as they are inexpensive and they kill fleas for up to 30 days. For owners of multiple pets, Frontline also offers a flea killing spray that will treat several dogs.

The price of flea killing pet meds goes higher when other parasites are also killed by the product. You may choose to provide wide ranging protection or may only be focused on killing fleas. No matter which product you choose for your dog, you can find significant savings by purchasing online from a site dedicated to discount pet medicines.

If you live in a hot, humid climate, flea control is a year round pet health care necessity. Such locations have heavy flea populations as well as ticks, heartworm and other nasty parasites that pose dangers to your dog’s health. Advantage flea medicine was one of the first topical products with residual killing power and has been gratefully accepted by pet owners as a real solution to fleas. The newest addition to the Advantage line of pet products is Advantage Multi which kills fleas and also protects your dog from roundworm, whipworm, hookworm and heartworm.

Frontline Plus kills fleas and flea eggs and also kills brown dog ticks, American dog ticks and lone star ticks as well. The spot on treatment lasts a full 30 days and remains effective after bathing your dog. Frontline Plus controls chewing lice and helps control sarcoptic mange for dogs 8 weeks and older. K9 Advantix is a good choice for flea prevention where high mosquito populations are present. K9 Advantix kills both adult fleas and larvae to break the flea life cycle. Ticks are killed and the product also repels mosquitoes. K9 Advantix should not be used on dogs that come into physical contact with cats or on pregnant or nursing dogs. For older or sick dogs, consult your veterinarian before using K9 Advantix to control fleas.

Revolution is a prescription medicine that is well named. This topical treatment offers a wide range of protection for dogs, killing fleas and flea eggs and American dog ticks. Revolution also treats ear mites, controls sarcoptic mites and is a heart preventive dog med. It is considered safe for use on puppies over six weeks old and for pregnant or lactating dogs.

Capstar is a unique flea product that is meant for specific occasions. Capstar is a single dose of one pill given to the dog that kills all adult fleas present on the animal quickly. This pet med does not kill flea eggs or have a residual effect. It is a good solution for dogs that have adult fleas as it kills the fleas quickly and can followed 24 hours later with a topical, long term flea medicine. Capstar is useful for dogs that are shown or boarded, or for a newly adopted animal brought into your home. The newest flea medicine for dogs is Comfortis. Unlike spot on treatments, Comfortis is a beef flavored wafer your dog will eagerly accept as a treat. This new product begins killing flea within 30 minutes of ingestion and keeps your dog flea free for 30 days.

Before buying flea medicine for your dog, decide what level of protection you need. What parasites does your dog need protection from in your area and which method of administering the medication do you prefer. Most flea prevention products (except Revolution) are available without prescription and can be purchased online directly from a veterinarian at discount pet med sites.

Fleas are adaptive little critters and can quickly become immune to flea killing products. Pet owners who live in states where flea protection is a year round task should change the brand of topical product every 6-12 months. By rotating the flea medicine treatments pet owners will hinder the ability of fleas to develop immunity to flea killers.

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Why Do Dogs Snore?

About a third of dog owners allow their dogs to sleep on the bed with them. Many single men and women get company from their dogs in the day and the night time in this way. The lovers of no other pets allow their pets to sleep with them as much as dog owners do.

It is handy that dogs have a similar sleep pattern to humans, whereas cats tend to like hunting at night. Dogs also seem to dream and enter into the REM (rapid eye movement) sleep stage.

Every dog owner has observed his dog running and barking softly in his sleep. What else can they be doing other than dreaming? When a dog is sound asleep like this, it can be as difficult to wake him up as any child and when they do wake up they seem drowsy and they shake themselves awake.

Some dogs have been bred for definite purposes and this has lead to facial characteristics which have given rise to breathing abnormalities. Pugs and other dogs with squashed faces often breathe very noticeably in their sleep and at other times in the day.

Some dogs even snore and some snore very noisily. If your dog sleeps with you, this can be a concern. The causes why dogs snore are usually the same ones that lead to humans snoring, although, as stated above one of the main causes for breathing abnormalities is breeding.

One cause of snoring is a constraint of the nasal passages because of an allergy. If you suspect that this is the case, you can begin by thinking whether you have added anything new to your home or whether you use a new air freshener. If you cannot discover the cause yourself, you might have to call in a vetinary surgeon.

One of the principal causes of snoring in humans is being overweight and the same is true of dogs, particularly the smaller breeds. If your dog has just begun snoring, maybe he just put on that extra pound that broke the camel’s back, so to speak.

If you believe that this might be the cause of your dog’s snoring, the clear answer is to help him to lose weight through exercise and dieting. There is a good probability that that will stop the snoring.

If all else fails and you are being driven to distraction by your dog’s nonstop snoring, there is some minor remedial surgery available to open up the nasal passages. It is a quite routine operation that does not take long and should result in both you and your dog getting a better night’s sleep..

If you choose to go down this route, ring around a few vets to get prices as the fees that vets can charge differ considerably.