Why Spot Needs His Own “Spot”

SarahAnxiety Issues, Dog Training, Indoor MannersLeave a Comment

With the pet care expenditures topping over 52 billion dollars in 2012, it’s no surprise that we tend to pamper, dare I say spoil, our pets from time to time. With sparkly, studded collars, designer sweaters and even nail polish available to purchase for our pooches, some things may be a smidge on the unnecessary side. One might even say the same thing about dog beds, too. After all, since when did dogs upgrade themselves from sleeping on the concrete pad outside under the back stairs to needing a “Luxury Suede Pillow top Pet Bed” of their very own? Admittedly, there’s probably a happy medium in there somewhere. Nevertheless, I am a huge proponent that every dog needs a dedicated “spot” or perch in the home. There are at least three reasons that a dog could benefit from a spot – aka a bed, mat or climb of their very own. … Read More

Q&A: Help! My Dog Jumps on My Grandchildren!

SarahDog Training, Dogs and Family, Indoor Manners, Leash TrainingLeave a Comment

St Louis Dog Training Dog Walking

Question: We have a 2 year old poodle that drives our grandchildren and other visitors crazy when they come into the house. She jumps and will not leave them alone until I get a hold of her. She also licks people continually if you let her. Any suggestions on how to break these behaviors? Cathy – St. Louis Answer: Hi Cathy, Thank you for your question… Over-exuberant jumping on guests is an extremely common problem among dog owners. Whether you have a miniature poodle, a standard poodle or a “malti-poo,” jumping can be an annoyance for your guests, or worse, very dangerous, especially for children and elderly guests. Dogs jump not because they are trying to “dominate” your guests, but because jumping has worked effectively in the past in ultimately getting what they want… their immediate attention! It will be important to warn your guests that your dog is in … Read More

Q&A: Help! My Dog Has Too Much Energy!

SarahDog Training, Enrichment, Indoor MannersLeave a Comment

St Louis Dog Training Dog Walking

Question: I have a very active wire haired fox terrier that just turned one. She is very good natured and confident, but she demands constant attention. When I’m at my computer she barks, jumps and claws furiously on me. I’ve tried to turn sideways and ignore her or squirt her with a water bottle (neither of which work). When I reach to pet her, she [play] mouths me. When I walk, she nips at my heels and jumps to nip at my shirt. I walk her at least once a day, twice when I can, and throw the ball for her to chase in the yard, but nothing wears her out. Do you have any suggestions? I hate to have to crate her, but I also need to get my work done! Ellen P – St. Louis Answer: Dear Ellen, It sounds like you have adopted yourself a typical terrier… … Read More

Multi-Part Series: Loose Leash Walking – Part 3

SarahDog Training, Leash TrainingLeave a Comment

St Louis Dog Training Dog Walking

Welcome back to the multi-part series on loose leash walking with your dog. When it comes to training your dog, walking politely on leash is one of the most difficult things to train. Your dog has had lots of practice up to this point of pulling and getting to where he or she wants to go, and so the behavior of pulling has been well-rehearsed and solidified over a period of time. Don’t despair! There is hope! It will take time and patience, but it is possible to convince even the heaviest of pullers that being right by your side during walks is a better option. Of course, there are several different methods you might use to accomplish this. If you haven’t read the previous entries on loose leash walking, you may want to read them here first: Part 1 and Part 2. Alternative Method 1 – Capturing Method In … Read More

Multi-Part Series: Loose Leash Walking – Part 2

SarahDog Training, Dog Walking, Leash TrainingLeave a Comment

Welcome back to the multi-part series on training your dog to walk on a loose leash. As mentioned in Part 1, it’s important for you to decide what your training goals are before you start training. In many situations, owners are content to put their dog on special equipment, like a no-pull harness or a head collar to minimize pulling. Some owners would like to be able to walk their dog eventually on a regular collar, without any special equipment. If you fall into the latter category, then read on! Terminology Before training begins, it’s important to review some training terminology. Positive training techniques often rely on the use of a behavior marker. A marker – usually in the form of a sound – identifies for the dog the exact moment that they did something correct, and signifies that some form of reinforcement or reward is forthcoming very soon. This … Read More