Archives for Puppy or dog

Should you let a new dog sniff your hand?

  How many of us were taught to extend our hand when meeting a new dog to allow them to smell it? The “sniff test” is common advice that we have probably all done, but is no longer the advisable way to introduce yourself to a new dog.  Extending your hand towards a dog you don’t know could be seen as a potential threat, and trigger a defensive bite.  Instead, turn sideways, avoid direct eye contact, and possibly toss (don’t hand) the dog some treats. Dogs have amazing senses of smell – they can gather information just fine from where

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Dogs have a 3-second rule, too!

  Most dogs enjoy petting, but even the cuddliest dog has times when simply not in the mood!  Prolonged touching can be overstimulating to some dogs, and can make others uncomfortable or stressed.  When dogs don’t feel able to move away – which they may not when in physical contact with us – they may resort to telling us to back off in less desirable ways. Give dogs a way of “opting in” to social contact by using the “3-second rule” of petting.  Pet for no more than three seconds, then stop.  Does the dog nudge you or move into

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How to get your dog to trim his own nails (Part 1)

  Do you and your dog both dread toe-nail trims?  Then why not give your dog the opportunity to give themselves a pedicure on their own by making it into a simple trick? By taping some sandpaper to a plywood board or something similar, you can create a canine nail file! It is easy to train a dog to swipe their paw on the sandpaper, and as they do so, they will end up filing their own nails. Doing a few swipes a day a couple times a week can keep nails from getting unmanageable, and reduce how frequently you

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How to get your dog to file his own nails (part 2)

(Did you miss Part 1?) We show you how to train your dog to file their own nails by swiping at a sandpaper board… and while it is often relatively easy to teach the dog to file their front paws, teaching them to swipe with their rear feet can be a little more challenging. So we like to introduce a little environmental help! Sit on a chair, couch, footstool, etc. and prop your nail file board up at an angle in front of you. Have your dog in front of you and the board. Use a food lure to have

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Why we use the training method we do

  HSHV has long been an advocate for positive reinforcement-based training methods, and new research continues to support that this is the most effective approach.  A new study has found that dogs trained from a variety of cues – including coming when called when off-leash – responded more reliably and faster when trained using positive reinforcement than when dogs were trained the same behaviors using aversive devices, such as shock collars.  Read more about the study here.

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Dogs and Masks

  There is no doubt, the recent weeks have been strange and stressful for all of us.  Coming months will also likely bring more changes and adjustments in our lifestyles for both us and our pets.   One of the new sights that you might increasingly be encountering out on walks may be people wearing CDC-recommended face masks or other facial coverings.  You may be getting used to this new sight yourself, so imagine how strange it may look to your canine companion, who is suddenly wondering why humans look so different.   Help your dog out by getting them

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Returning to work? How to prepare your dog

  Is your dog actually loving the current stay-at-home order?  Pets may be the one part of the population who are not minding this new routine, as now they have you all to themselves all day long!  While you are hopefully enjoying all this extra time with your pets, you may have concerns about how your puppy or dog is going to adjust when things start to return to normal and we are leaving during the day again.  Now is the time to start working on preparing your dog for this eventual change.   First, set up a special area

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Choosing a place to board your pet

Choosing a safe and responsible boarding home or facility for your beloved pet is an important part of planning a getaway. With many unregulated and unlicensed homes and facilities providing these services, your pet’s health and safety can be put at risk. So how do you pick? Here are a few things to consider: 1. Word of Mouth. Unfortunately, anyone can run a boarding facility and can do so without regulation. And websites that match families with pet boarders do very little to enforce quality care. Testimony from those we trust can often be a good safeguard in choosing someone

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Food bowl bonuses (a.k.a., Teaching puppy to share)

Background Info Resource guarding is a term used to describe situations in which dogs are in possession of an item and want to retain possession of it. In the wild, this tends to be a life or death situation in that if the dog let another animal take possession of his/her food s/he would ultimately die of starvation. Dogs are naturally highly motivated to retain possession of the resource so that they survive. While this survival instinct served dogs well in the wild, it’s not one we appreciate in our pet dogs, so we need to teach our puppies to

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Dog Meets Young Child

This is intended as a broad overview of things to consider with Dog and Toddler and Dog and Preschooler dynamics. These are constantly evolving as a child grows and develops. The challenge here is that dogs rely on predictability and consistent body language in interacting with us and with children change and development happen quickly, particularly in the first 2 years of a child’s life. From a dog’s perspective, babies are confusing and a newly mobile baby or racing toddler is an unpredictable, erratic, worrisome creature. Please note that because a dog has been “around kids” does not mean that

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