Archive for the ‘Puppies’ Category

How To Get Your Puppy To Stop Stealing Clothes

Samantha | July 28th, 2012
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Puppies are like little children in that they need constant discipline and a watchful eye to be sure that they can learn the rules of your house. Some puppies have major behavior problems, while others display the typical scenarios, such as stealing clothes and other small items around the house as if it were a game.

Puppies are notorious for stealing anything that they can get their mouths on and then run away with it. At first this little habit is cute and very comical. However, after a while it needs to be seriously addressed because as the puppy matures into an adult dog, he will think that he is allowed to eat anything in the house, including your expensive shoes and nice furniture.

There are several ways to handle a puppy that is stealing your cloths and other items from around the house. One way to get your puppy to drop something from his mouth immediately is to simply walk out of the room and shut the door behind you. For example, let’s say you are in your room and your dog grabs a sock from the corner closet and runs around the room avoiding you at all costs. This is just a game to him, nothing more. So what you need to do is quickly have him lose interest in the game by just leaving the room with the door closed. In less than 10 seconds your puppy will drop the sock and start crying for your presence.

Another way to distract your puppy from stealing clothes and other small items is to distract him by running to the door and shaking your keys so that he understands that you are going to take him outside (dogs quickly associate the jingle of keys to someone leaving the house).

Now take the dog into the yard or the sidewalk for just a few minutes. If you do this enough, eventually your puppy will be able to stop playing his little thief game anytime you shake your keys. It’s all about distraction and training your puppy’s mind to associate something else of importance whenever he attempts to break the rules.

Last but not least, as I always recommend for most common behavioral problems with dogs, get yourself a small water bottle that you can use to squirt your puppy. Of course you do not want to torture your dog by squirting them in the eye or anything like that, but a little spritz of water can go a long way when trying to get your dog to stop whatever behavioral problem he keeps getting into.

Whenever you see your puppy grabbing something and running around the house with it, give them a quick squirt and a firm “no” command. He will be so surprised and shocked that he will quickly drop anything from his mouth while learning that this is one rule he cannot break.

Training Your Dog To Dig In One Spot

Gemma | November 30th, 2009
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Dogs and especially puppies love to dig. It’s simply in their nature and for many puppies it’s their favorite hobby. Young puppies are especially likely to start digging as it is a natural way of dealing with and relieving doggy stress.

Being a puppy is quite stressful even in a quiet house. There are lots of new experiences to deal with and it’s common sense that this may cause a young puppy to get stressed. Strange smells and sounds, lack of attention and many other things may cause your new dog to dig in order to release some of the pressure they may be feeling.

The good news is that there is a way for you to allow your puppy or dog to dig and release their stress without them destroying your garden or other valuable possesions.

Follow the simple instructions below to help to train your dog to only dig in an acceptable area and leave other areas alone. These instructions will train your dog not to dig and claw in areas that you don’t want him to. It creates a place for your dog where he is free to dig without worrying about upsetting you.

1. First you need to determine an acceptable area where your dog can dig or claw as much as they want to. This could be a small patch in the backyard, local park or even somewhere in your house.

2. Make it as much fun for them to dig in this area as possible. Try burying or hiding their favorite toys in this area. Now your dog can dig and have fun trying to find their toys at the same time. Try digging along with them to make it even more fun for them.

3. Each day go back to the chosen area and instruct your dog to start digging with a command such as “go dig” or “find it”. After a while your dog should associate the command with digging in the dirt. You can try burying a dog treat in the dirt but be sure to make sure they find it!

4. If you see your dog digging in another area be sure to correct them with the “NO” command. Say it firmly but don’t yell. Then guide them to the chosen digging spot. This is exactly the same routine you would use to housetrain a puppy. Eventually your dog will automatically go to their digging spot when they feel the urge to dig.

4 Tips For Dealing With A Barking Puppy

Gemma | November 26th, 2009
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Young puppies will often bark loudly and this can be quite unnerving for a new owner. Many new puppies will bark and yelp intensely when they arrive at their new home. Although this is quite natural and should be expected, if your new best friend doesn’t quiet down after a while and is driving you nuts at night these tips may help.

One of the biggest phases that a puppy will go through is the fear of being alone. And I’m not talking about being alone in the sense of you leaving the house. Some puppies will go absolutely nuts even when you only leave the room for a split second. They just can’t bear to be alone because they are used to having their mommy or littermates around non-stop.

When faced with this situation, what you do? If you run to your puppy to sooth and caress him every time he cries, then you are only feeding the behavior and creating a spoiled dog. On the other hand, if you ignore him and let him bark his brains out, the rest of the family (especially your spouse) will become very annoyed with you for letting the barking go on.

It’s like being stuck between a rock and a hard place, however, we do have some tips to help you deal with your puppy barking situation:

1. Don’t Yell

The first step is to try to ignore your puppy’s barking if at all possible without yelling at him. Yelling will either scare him from wanting to come near you or will further add to his anxiety levels that and he will continue barking.

2. Use A Teaching Lead

There is a product called a “teaching lead” which will enable your puppy to be around you at all times in the house. Use these types of tools so that your puppy can be around you while he is getting used to his independence.

3. Leave & Arrive Calmly

When you leave the house, try to refrain from long and drawn out departures. Although it’s understandable to want to pet your puppy and talk sweet to her before leaving the house, it only creates more stress because she will start to associate your behavior with you leaving her side. The same advice goes when you arrive home. Avoid big and exciting welcomes after walking through the door.

4. Use A Simple Training Aid

Try using a simple training aid to get your puppy to quiet down immediately when she is barking. A water bottle that sends a quick burst of streaming spray is a perfect idea. Or you could use a small tin can filled with a few pennies in it. When you go to leave her side and she starts barking, simply throw that can in her area. It will create a startling noise while at the same time diverting her attention.

How Does The Adoption Process Work For Rescue Puppies?

Sarah | January 20th, 2009
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For all the dog lovers out there it goes without saying that a new dog for the family should come from a shelter or breed rescue group. While the shelter works with all breeds that are dropped off, rescue groups work with one specific breed. Both strive to prepare their animals as best possible to be adoptable (training, care, health).

At the same time that a shelter or rescue group prepares a puppy or dog for adoption, they also try to find eligible adopters. Both types of organizations place advertisements on the Internet and in local newspapers that describe available animals. Potential adopters might respond by phone or e-mail, or visit in person.

However, not all potential adopters make the grade. Many facilities have very strict guidelines and restrictions on who gets one of their puppies. For example, the following criteria is standard for people looking to adopt a pup from a high-quality shelter or rescue group:

1) A stay-at-home parent (or one that works from home) should be present. This is because puppies can’t stay alone in a crate for more than a couple of hours.

2) There should also be another dog in the family that the new puppy can learn from. This helps immensely in the pup’s socialization.

3) A fence is mandatory if there are children in the house younger than the age of six.

4) And finally, a commitment from the adopter to continue socialization and a willingness to take the pup to professional training.

Just as rescue groups and animal shelters are fussy about who can adopt their puppies, potential adopters should be equally fussy as to whom they adopt a puppy from. For example, at a shelter, there should be co-housing: puppies housed with other puppies for critical socialization to dogs.

Also, the premises should be clean, and there should be appropriate toys and bedding with the puppies. There should be some sort of program or schedule for getting the puppies out of the kennel to interact with people and see different sights and sounds.

Visitors to a shelter should be greeted by a pleasant and knowledgeable staff member or volunteer. Both shelters and rescue groups should be able to provide information on why the puppy was brought to a shelter or into rescue, confirmation that the puppy has received all immunizations, and information on other resources such as owner counseling or dog training.

Once the shelter or rescue group passes your approval, a prospective adopter should look closely at the puppy he or she is interested in before making a final decision to adopt. A puppy that shows signs of illness or poor care such as excessive amount of fleas as an example should be avoided. The dog should have no diarrhea on his rear and hind legs, no discharge, and you want a puppy who shows an interest in you and is at least somewhat active.


How To Combine Playtime With Obedience Training

Alan | December 15th, 2008
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Puppies are like children in many ways. They need constant care, supervision, and a lot of affection. Having both together, your kids and your dog, especially during playtime, require extra supervision and patience. The key is to teach your child how to play with the puppy and for the puppy to understand that he needs to listen to the child the same way he listens to you and the other adults in the family.

Always Use The Same Commands

It is important for your child to use the same commands that you and the rest of the family use. Doing so teaches your child to use the commands with respect toward the dog. At the same time, your puppy will realize that he needs to obey the childs commands, thus teaches both to respect one another.

It sounds like it can be quite a handful, but it is also a lot of fun. Combining training and playtime helps to create a closer bond between your child and puppy. Let them run together and then see how fast your child can command the puppy to stop and sit. The puppy needs to learn to sit and wait while your child to throw a toy for your puppy to retrieve. Your child can also train the dog how to roll over by rolling in the grass while having the puppy mimic him.

There are many other ways you can incorporate training and fun between your child and puppy.

Some helpful rules to keep in mind

1. Your dog should understand who the leader is. If he has an instinct to herd, dont let him herd your child. Doing so will make the dog think that he is in charge and will not obey your childs commands.

2. No roughhousing whatsoever. Discourage aggressive play at all times. Do not let your child drag, pull, wrestle, hit, or poke the puppy, even in a playful way. Your puppy may react differently and may jump and bite. At the same time, do not let your puppy jump on your child. A four year old German Shepherd can easily knock down a 6 year old child.

3. Teach your child to respect the puppy, and vice versa. Your child should learn how to properly treat the dog, which will then earn him the respect and leadership from your puppy.

4. Establish consistency. Puppies learn through repetition. Your child needs to understand that commands that we teach him are firm and absolute. If the puppy doesnt obey the command, the child should repeat the command until the puppy does what he is told to do.

5. No squeezing. Hugging the puppy too tight can result in injury.

6. Always be there to supervise playtime, especially if you have a young child and/or you have a new puppy. This way, you can easily intervene if things get out of hand.

Getting Your Child & New Puppy Off To A Great Start

Gemma | November 5th, 2008
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Nothing is more adorable than seeing a small child and a loving puppy playing happily together. What’s even better to know, is that psychological studies have proven that people who are fortunate enough to grow up with a dog in the family household tend to have happier childhoods.

Kids who grow up with a family dog learn respect for other creatures as well as caring for them. These kids learn empathy, sympathy, handling responsibilities. They also develop self-confidence and self-esteem by knowing they are contributing to taking care of a living creature.

You Must Help

These benefits and learning experiences between children and their pets do not occur automatically. It takes a responsible and patient adult to properly introduce the child to the new puppy and teach him/her how to properly interact with this new member of the family.

At the same time, the puppy needs to learn respect and obey the child the same way as he respects and obeys the other members of the household. This way, every member of the family can have a loving and healthy relationship.

The manner in which you approach your puppy and the experiences that you give him from his very first minute in the house will create a lasting impact throughout his entire life. From the first introduction, your child should learn the proper way to treat the puppy. Your child should realize that the puppy is a baby, and in many ways should be treated like one.

Avoiding Injuries To The Puppy & Your Child

Children around the age of 7 years and younger have the tendency to get excited when faced with new situations and experiences. This excitement may not be ideal when it comes to meeting a new puppy, or a dog of any age for that matter.

Excited behaviors such as making loud noises, chasing after the puppy, pulling at him, and other aggressive behaviors will result in the puppy getting scared.

In this situation, the puppy will more likely run away instead of letting the child pet him. A very young puppy will try to find his mom and hide under her, while a puppy around 12 weeks old will perceive these behaviors as either a threat or an aggressive play and will most likely react by nipping or jumping up.

The proper way of introducing your new pet to your child is through restraint and guidance. Your child should realize that the puppy is a baby and that your child should be gentle when handling him. To better teach your young ones how to be gentle, use a stuffed animal and teach her how to pet it properly. Practice this with your child for a few days before the puppy arrives home.

Buying From A Backyard Breeder

Peter | October 21st, 2008
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One type of breeder that offers puppies for sale is known as the backyard breeder. These people should never be confused with the small professional breeder. The backyard breeder can be considered the bad apple in the barrel.

Low-Priced Puppies, Only $50.00!

This type of headline can be found all across every newspaper and small advertising publication throughout the country, each and every day. The puppies advertised are rarely, if ever, what they seem. Even if the puppies are from purebred parents, they are not bargains for they are usually the result of indiscriminate breeding. You can never be absolutely sure of what you are getting.

A Prime Example Of The Typical Backyard Breeder Sale

Mrs. Collins had been given a Collie a few years back. Several people commented on how gorgeous the dog was and, If you ever breed her, I’ll buy one of the puppies from you. Then Mrs. Collins moved into a new neighborhood in which her neighbor also had a pet Collie. At a certain time of the year, both dogs developed a tremendous liking for one another. Dollar signs began to register in the minds of both owners.

Approximately 2 months later, nine puppies had been born. Once the initial cuteness of the adoring newborns had worn off, Mrs. Collins discovered that she, and she alone, would have to bear the full brunt of this litter. She never factored in the high costs involved in puppy shots, food, worming medications and other veterinarian fees. Now after about 8 weeks, all of the puppies are weaned from the mother and Mrs. Collins is stuck feeding the entire group.

All of the I can’t wait to buy a puppy from you friends have conveniently disappeared. Then one day Mrs. Collins discovers that she is only allowed a specific number of dogs on the property, as outlined in the apartment rules. Now she is faced with a fact: these purebred Collies must now be dumped!

Full of worms, and not inoculated against anything, Mrs. Collins is faced with three choices. She can dump them off on some unsuspecting pet shop, take them to the animal shelter, or place an ad in the local paper and try to recoup some of her money.

So, this litter of Collie puppies end up in the Sunday newspaper. No one will know until it’s too late that the puppies will have terrible temperaments. Nobody checked the pedigrees (if in fact there had been any to begin with) to find out exactly what was behind the two Collies who had been mated.

I am using the term mated instead of bred because true breeding is a science that takes time, skill, and devotion to creating the healthiest puppies possible. Backyard breeders like Mrs. Collins have no clue as to what it takes to create a real purebred puppy. So beware of buying cheap pets from your local newspaper.

Consequently, if you are disgruntled over the high prices that professional breeders are asking for their puppies, remember that breeding and raising good dogs is not a cheap investment. Puppies must be given the best food available, including vitamins and mineral supplements. Veterinary fees are not cheap. The professional breeder knows all of these things. And all of these reasons are why buying a good puppy from a professional breeder is worth every dollar you spend.

How To Get The Most From Your Breeder By Educating Yourself

Peter | August 24th, 2008
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One of the top aspects of being a reputable breeder is that they should know what type of behavior to expect from his puppies as they grow into adulthood, known as temperate.

Although it is easy to predict the future temperament of a litter by observing their parents, the right breeder has the knowledge and understanding of the breed that goes way back to it’s history. This knowledge and understanding gives the breeder a better insight of his dogs’ behavior and temperament. He can tell you why his dog behaves a certain way, its personality, and what drives the dog to do certain things and act the way it does.

A good breeder can also tell you his puppy’s strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes, and what changes to expect as it gets older (physically and mentally). Does it enjoy being around children? Does it get along with strangers and other animals? Is it needy or independent? What are its grooming and exercise needs? Is it a good watchdog? The right breeder should be able to answer these questions and more.

It is important for him to make sure that you, the potential buyer, are well equipped with the necessary tools and information to create the best home for the puppy. Furthermore, a responsible breeder will want to make sure that the puppy will be happy living in your home and that you all are the ideal family for it.

Arm Yourself With Breed Conformation Information

A breed conformation is defined as a specific way of describing a certain breed; the shape, size, and structure there are common with the standard type of breed.

Before visiting a breeder, you should check the official breed standard of the particular breed you’re looking for. The official breed standard is posted on the website. By checking the site, you will have the knowledge of what the puppy is supposed to look like before you make the purchase. In addition, you won’t be fooled by a dishonest breeder into giving him more money for something that is allegedly a rare size, color, or look, but is actually a disqualifying or severe fault.

An honest breeder conforms to the standard of the breed and will only sell puppies with disqualifying or severe faults for a lesser price (up to 50% off). He should let you know that these puppies are less expensive because they are considered as pet-quality dogs and not show-quality dogs.

Finding A Professional Breeder That Puts Health First

Alan | August 19th, 2008
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If you are thinking about getting a specific pure bred puppy, the best route is to go to a professional breeder. And if you want to make sure that the purebred puppy is in great health, has a sound temperament, and one that will match with your personality and lifestyle, then you need to find an honest and knowledgeable breeder, one that will help you find that perfect puppy.

The Importance Of Finding The Right Breeder

Nowadays, finding a reputable breeder is not as easy as it used to be. Many self-proclaimed breeders are nothing more than regular dog owners practicing backyard breeding. Many of these backyard breeders lack proper knowledge, history, and understanding of the breed, other than the one that they own.

Therefore, you need to do a thorough research and find a legitimate breeder, one who is also honest and well educated about specific dog breeds. A reputable breeder should be able to give you pertinent information about his puppies, as well as answer questions you may have regarding the breed, even after you have purchased the puppy. Most importantly, a reputable breeder should have genuine interest and love for his dogs.

One advantage of going to a breeder is that he has first-hand experience and knowledge of raising that specific dog breed. These are two important factors that he can pass down to you which will help you raise a healthy and happy dog. Reliable breeders are concerned about many aspects of their dogs, with health being number one.


A reputable breeder’s top priority is to make sure that his puppies are free of genetic diseases that are common and dangerous to that specific breed. For instance, a breeder of Labrador retrievers should test their puppies for, at the least, diseases and disorders that are common with the breed, such as developmental diseases of the bone and joint, retinal dysplasia, and tricuspid dysplasia.

That breeder should all have an updated certificate for eye evaluation obtained from the Canine Eye Registration Foundation that ensures the puppy does not have genetic eye disease. The results of the eye evaluation should be registered at the Canine Health Information Center, where potential buyers and owners can go to and check the results.

Big Dog Breed Puppies Need Training As Early As Possible

Gemma | December 6th, 2006
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When is the best time to start training your puppy? Dog experts and trainers alike all agree that puppy training and socialization should start as early as possible. If you or any other new puppy owner is under the notion that training should not begin until the dog is about five to six months old, you should discard that theory completely from your mind.

Through decades of research it has been concluded that training should begin the moment your dog steps foot in the house. Most puppies are purchased or adopted when they are six to seven weeks old, however, they can start early training and become socialized as young as two to three weeks. Their minds are like sponges, just waiting to absorb stimuli and information.

Especially For Big Dogs…

Early training should be initiated for a variety of reasons, but most importantly, puppies that will grow to be bigger sized dogs need this early training to prevent them from becoming a burden to the family, and not only for bad behavior, but also due to the problems it can cause from the dog’s size.

There is nothing worse than having an untrained, obnoxious 75 pound dog jumping up on you and other people without the ability to stop. By the time these dogs are seven to nine months of age, they will be too strong for most family members to handle.

Learning Is Effortless At Such An Early Age…

What is even better, is that puppies who experience training at a very early age can learn with very little effort. Any dog that was initiated with behavior and socialization skills rarely grow up to have biting problems or other issues that need major corrections.

I can personally attest to this information. Being the proud owner of six dogs, four of which were born right here at home, the experiences I have had with dog training will last a lifetime.

The four dogs that have been in my home since the day they were born demonstrated absolutely no behavior problems growing up. However, my other two dogs were adopted at the same time and were each approximately 7 months old.

Needless to say, it was quite a rough learning experience for both the dogs and myself. It took twice the effort and time to get them at the same learning skill level and behavior respect that my other four dogs were showing, and at the same age on average.