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The Single Biggest Mistake You May Be Making

The Single Biggest Mistake You May Be Making

Terie Hansen

 

This may come as a surprise to many dog owners but, allowing your dog to meet other dogs or people while on leash may be the single biggest mistake you ever make.  It can result in a multitude of negative outcomes and behaviors.

Repeated on leash greetings can take an otherwise relaxed, happy, social dog and turn it into a nervous insecure dog or an over stimulated excessively excited dog.

When dogs are in an uncomfortable situation they can get into flight or fight mode. In social interactions, where your dog is not on a leash they can move away (flight) if they feel stressed, nervous, fearful or anxious. That would be an excellent choice on the dog’s part. However, when they are leashed, they no longer have that option, and they know it. That leaves them looking for alternate ways to deal with the situation. One option may be to fight. This may not have happened yet, but with repeated exposure to stressful on leash interactions your dog may one day choose the fight option. In their mind, you are not advocating for them. In fact, YOU are placing them in the stressful situation in the first place.

At the very least you can end up with a leash reactive dog (one that barks, growls, lunges at other dogs or people while on leash). REACTIVITY is the way that that many dogs choose to deal with stressful situations. Reactivity can be mild or pretty scary. One thing for sure is, if you don’t address the behavior it will worsen.

Who and how do you let dogs interact with? Happy, social dogs that you know, off leash in an enclosed area (house/yard). Also, doggy daycare is a great choice. It is a social environment that is structured and supervised by trained professionals.

Next time you think it’s a good idea to let your dog meet another dog on leash, put yourself in their place. Would you like to be repeatedly placed situations where you couldn’t get away if you wanted/needed to?

 

Terie Hansen is Owner of Good Dog! Coaching & Pet Care. More information at www.gooddogcoaching.com

New Year, New Dog

New Year, New Dog

Terie Hansen

A dog can learn new things at any age. If you’ve been living with a dog that has less than desirable behaviors, there’s no time like the present to make a change. It’s a new year, new dog!
puppy leash training in lawrenceville, ga

Obedience training can change your dog’s behavior dramatically. Start with simple commands like sit or down. Teach your dog one new command every couple of weeks. Start with a simple sit command, then add walking nicely on leash (no pulling) etc. Make sure to have a leash on your dog so that you have control when needed and can guide your dog into position.

Teach the commands with an implied stay. The sit command for example, doesn’t just mean to sit down for a moment it means to sit and keep sitting until you release the dog. No need to even say stay. [Read more…]

How to Train a Dog to Be Balanced

 To HAVE what others don’t, you’ve got to DO what others won’t.
how to train a dog

These words are as true for dog training as they are for anything else. How to train a dog
Many people say they want a well trained dog but not as many are willing to do what it takes to achieve that.
It’s easy to share love and affection. It’s not as easy to share structure and discipline.
But these things in combination are the things that yield a well-balanced dog.
Too much affection and freedom create anxiety and nervousness. Which often leads to a reactive even aggressive dog.
Implementing a level of structure, leadership and boundaries will create a relaxed, well adjusted dog. Teaching your dog how to remain calm in any and all situations goes a long way in creating a well balanced dog. Socializing your dog to different situations, environments, people, places, things while teaching your dog to just exist, not get excited by the newness.
Exercise, training, down time in their crate are all a part of the process. And it IS a process.
You must also redefine what love is.
True love is giving your dog what they NEED not just what feels good to you the human.
Love your dog by training your dog.
There are no shortcuts. You must put in the time and effort. But what you and your dog will gain in the process is a bond like no other as well as the ability to take your dog anywhere. Which enriches both your life and theirs!
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Who Advocates for Your Dog? You or Your Dog?

Advocate for your dog. If you don’t your dog will advocate for itself and that doesn’t usually turn out well. Who advocates for your dog?

advocate for your dog

Learn and Understand Canine Body Language.

When we say “advocate” what do we mean? Who advocates for your dog?
We mean, putting your dog’s physical and emotional well-being first. BEFORE your own wants and needs. You protect your dog, not the other way around. This requires you to be aware, alert and proactive. Practice constant situational awareness. Who advocates for your dog?

Learn and understand canine body language. Make sure to look at the dog’s entire body (a wagging tail does not always equal a happy dog). Doing so affords you the opportunity to not put your dog into or to remove your dog from situations where your dog feels stressed, fearful, overwhelmed, threatened or overexcited. Preempting your dog from taking matters into his own hands or practicing unwanted behaviors. [Read more…]

How to Train a Dog – Dog Training When Life Happens

How to Train a Dog – Dog Training When Life Happens

Terie Hansen

 

You’ve been consistently training your dog, things are going well and then life happens. Whether your dog is the friendly, exuberant, overexcited type or the reactive, growly, lunging, and possibly biting type, life will throw you a curve ball now and again and you are best to be prepared. How to train a dog when life happens…

dog training stop dog jumpingA friend or family member visits, and although you’ve asked them to ignore your easily excitable dog, (who is, clearly one acknowledgement away from losing it) your friend reaches toward your dog, speaking in a high pitched voice, encourages your dog’s excitement and allows him to jump all over them. Your attempts to corral your dog are followed by, ”Oh, I don’t mind! I’dog training in publicm a dog lover.” from your friend.

At a local pet or home improvement store, while working on your dog’s public access skills, a stranger approaches, outstretched hand, swooping in to pet your dog without so much as asking permission.

reactive dog training on a leashWhile walking your dog, an off-leash dog approaches seemingly out of nowhere and a fight ensues.

Your puppy, who you’ve been training diligently, spends a week with Grandma because of work travel. Upon returning home, it’s as if you never trained him at all.

These are all things that can happen through no fault of yours. Your best defense? Think ahead for scenarios that could come up while training with your dog and be prepared. how to train a dog.

[Read more…]

Dog Training Tips for Teaching Thresholds

Dog Training Tips for Teaching Thresholds. Do not pass unless invited to do so!Dog Training Tips Teaching Thresholds

Do you own a “Door Dasher”?

 

Thresholds at it pertains to dogs is an important but oftentimes overlooked area of training with many owners and dog trainers. Teaching a dog NOT to move through a threshold unless invited  to do so can be lifesaving. A threshold is a door to the house, car door, crate door etc. So many times, I hear of dogs escaping through a door only to get lost, or worse, hit by a car or engage in dog fights. [Read more…]