Archive for the ‘Shelter Dogs’ Category

Adopting A Labrador Retriever – The One Magic Word

Gemma | March 31st, 2005
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One reason many Labrador Retrievers are abandoned to animal shelters is because they jumped on small children, knocking them over or scaring them. A lot of people don’t understand how to manage jumping and when their Lab gets big, jumping isn’t so cute anymore.

People don’t know how to deal with it so they give up on the dog. Once a Lab has reached its full adult size, jumping can become a real problem, but that’s also an easy problem to fix. All it takes is one little word: Sit.

Sit is the solution to over 90% of behavior problems. The sit command is the answer, and it’s the easiest thing in the world to train a dog to do. When a dog is sitting, it can’t be jumping up. Train your newly adopted shelter Lab to sit with big rewards and you’ll see a huge difference in behavior.

Many adult Labs already know the sit command so using it frequently can nip jumping quickly. Even Labs that don’t know the command to sit know how to sit. If you teach the dog to sit on command, you’ve solved all kinds of problems before you ever get to a training class. Labs are so trainable because they want to please you and they want rewards. They really do want to sit for you!

Out Of Control Jumpers

Teaching your dog the off command is necessary for those out-of-control jumpers. Jumping up is the way the Lab expresses how desperate it is for attention. The more hyper you get in response to this behavior, the more excited your Lab becomes. Even yelling is attention to your Lab. Teach him that the only time it will get love and attention is when it is sitting. Ignore it when it jumps on you become a statue, literally.

To teach off you will actually want to invite this excitement from your Lab by acting excited yourself. Then, when it jumps up, cross your arms, turn away and quietly say off. Then wait don’t move, talk or make eye contact.

When the dog realizes it’s not getting any sort of attention, positive or negative, it will get back on the floor. Immediately praise him. Your Lab will get bored fast and try something else, like sitting. That’s when you pour on the praise.

After only a few times, if you are quick and consistent, your Lab will learn that it gets what it craves attention when all four paws are on the floor instead of jumping all over you.

Rules To Follow When Bringing Home Your Child’s First Puppy

Gemma | December 19th, 2004
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I can still remember the very first day that my Mom and Dad brought home a new puppy for my brothers and myself.

It was probably the most exciting day of my life and the very first time that I fell in love with my pet dog.

His name was Laddy and he became my very first best friend. That day happened almost 30 years ago.

Laddy is unfortunately not with us anymore, but the memory of my first puppy will live on forever.

Your Child’s First Puppy Memories

As you can tell, getting a dog was one of the fondest moments of my childhood and if you’re planning to offer the same joy and excitement for your child by giving him or her a new puppy, it will be a gift that you and your kids will never forget.

The day you present that adorable and loving pup to your children, the memory will be etched in their minds forever.

Teaching Your Children What To Expect When The Puppy Arrives

There is one word that can describe what it’s going to be like for your children as they are introduced to this sweet tiny puppy: Excitement!

All little boys and girls go absolutely crazy when they see a puppy somewhere out in town and since it is going to be their new puppy, you can guarantee this excitement to be magnified by 1000%

Your job is to ensure that your children can remain as calm as possible. Let them know that you understand how exciting it is when the new puppy gets home, but at the same time you must teach them that he is going to be extremely scared and nervous. A puppy will need some space so that he does not get overly frightened.

Teach your kids to avoid yelling and shouting. Let them know that all roughhousing and grabbing of the puppy is forbidden. In addition, declare an official rule that the siblings can not fight with each other in front of the puppy, ever.

The best way to go about this is to have a family meeting before you bring the dog home and make sure to go over all of the rules with your children. Have them repeat these rules until you’re confident that the kids can be trusted with the puppy so that he does not get harmed or frightened.

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Is It Possible To Adopt A Quality Puppy?

Gemma | January 25th, 2004
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Is it possible to find a quality puppy to adopt at your local animal shelter or breed rescue group?

Conventional wisdom says no, but representatives of both enterprises say that’s not always the case. In fact, many puppies are given up and not adopted for a while. For example, one pup named Tiger was dropped off at a local San Diego shelter when he was just 12 weeks old and is still waiting to be adopted. He is 8 months old now.

You can find a lovely puppy at a shelter. Some of these puppies come from backyard breeders or from people who find themselves saddled with oops! litters when an unexpected litter of puppies results when a female dog is impregnated by accident.

Still, the availability of puppies at a shelter or breed rescue group may depend on what breed is involved. Rescue groups rarely get puppies, let alone purebred Gold Retriever puppies, for example. In another group located in New York, there have only been three litters of puppies of the nearly 800 dogs that have been placed.

In any case, breed rescue groups and animal shelters have identical missions: To match homeless dogs with people who will love them and give them permanent homes.

Shelters generally accommodate all breeds and mixes. Many are run by local governments. Some have a policy of euthanizing dogs who are not claimed or adopted after a certain period of time; others will keep adoptable dogs indefinitely.

Generally, all adoptable dogs that come to a shelter are given health examinations and any immunizations needed, and may be spayed or neutered. Many shelters also perform special tests to determine what type of temperament a dog has, and some offer training programs to help increase a dog’s chances of being adopted.

Breed rescue groups focus on serving one breed or mixes in which that single breed predominates. Volunteers for these groups identify dogs in need, take them into their own homes for foster care, attend to their medical needs, and provide remedial training to help the dogs become more adoptable.

Typically, adoptable dogs remain with rescue groups until a permanent home is found. Sometimes, that permanent home turns out to be that of the foster care provider.

Often, shelters and rescue groups work together on a dog’s behalf. For example, if a dog’s time is running out at an animal shelter, staff workers there might contact a rescue group and ask if that group can provide foster care for the dog. Such cooperation literally can be a lifesaver for a dog who needs a little more time to find a forever home.