Tips & Tricks Blog

Tips & Tricks... A blog created by the trainers of Hub City Dog Training

Animal Medical Center of Hattiesburg Blog

By 7016241037 19 Oct, 2017

How many times have you experienced destruction of furniture, toys, or even the yard via digging? You just don’t understand why your dog acts out this way. You provide daily walks and even change up the toys he/she plays with.

Maybe we just haven’t thought about the fact that dogs also have basic physical needs as well as behavioral and emotional needs. Your dog can easily get bored or even frustrated when there is not enough stimulation. However, your dog can become overreactive or stressed if they are too overstimulated. This means, you have to figure out what your dog needs for mental stimulation. The type breed your dog is can help you to decipher what stimulation is best for your dog. Remember that more exercise does not mean it will fulfill the void for mental stimulation.

In last month’s house training blog, we discussed the need for a schedule and consistency. This will help as we incorporate ways to keep you dog busy. Use the list below to help determine what may work best for your dog:

1.    Basic toys – balls, stuffed and squeaky toys, rope toys

2.    Chew and food toys – inedible toys such as Nylabone, food-stuffed toys such as Kong, treat dispensing toys

3.    Homemade toys – cardboard, paper, flexible plastic containers

4.    Food games – hunt for toys or treats (your dog doesn’t necessarily eat out of a dish, but looks for dry food in his/her crate, toy box, or even hide treats in the yard: this is not a good exercise for dogs that guard their food from other pets and/or people)

5.    Training – basic obedience, trick training – go to bed, put away your toys

6.    Fetch games – try variations such as different locations, with obstacles (over and under). If your dog will not give the object have 2 toys to exchange out

7.    Hide-and-seek games – hide treats for your dog to find or even hide people

8.    Exploration exercise – take a hike and allow your dog to safely explore, go in the woods, to a lake

9.    Social engagement – Dog play dates and even doggy daycare

Things to consider with the above list: ensure that toys are safe and nothing can be swallowed and become lodged in your dog. If a toy starts to get torn, throw it away. Supervision will help ensure that toys do not result in a veterinary visit.

Let’s know think about characteristics of your dog and what type of mental stimulation may work best for he/she:

1.    For the dog that chews, shreds and steals items – food toys and puzzle toys can be useful

2.    For the dog that digs – designate a sand box are for him/her, then hide toys and treats in the sand box (if your dog eats the sand, this may not be the best game)

3.    For the dog that sniffs everything and urine marks all different areas – go for a walk and let him/her choose the direction for slow, relaxed walk. Letting him/her investigate the area can be beneficial in allowing him/her to unwind

4.    For the dog that likes to retrieve and chase things – fetch – be creative with what your dog fetches you are not limited just to balls. Think about Frisbee or Kong on a rope, items that bounce weird, and different shapes

5.    For the dog that loves water – take them swimming – include fetch in the water

6.    For the social dog – play dates at the dog park or friends home

Things to consider with the above list: when exploring outdoors and in lakes and ponds, watch for snakes. If you dog is bitten by a snake it is an immediate medical emergency.

This information should help you to determine a good mental stimulation plan that will provide the needed reward for your dog. Think outside the box, and take your dog on new adventures. Of course, ensure that your dog is up for the adventure by referring to the socialization blog. We never want to put our dogs in a stressful situation that can cause anxiety instead of fun. The sky is the limit when it comes to fun exercise and mental stimulation for your dog.

Happy Training!

Alison Patrolia, C.V.T.

By 7016241037 12 Sep, 2017

One of the best feelings is to get a puppy. You do everything right… buy a crate, get the best food, have a plethora of toys, and take your puppy for regular veterinary visits. But then, house training becomes a big challenge. It can be frustrating and even place a wedge between the bond of you and your puppy. Listed below are tips that can make the process more successful for you and your puppy:                 

1.     Crate training: Utilizing a crate is great to encourage successful house training. It also helps develop independence for your puppy. The crate should be fun for your puppy and never used for punishment. You want you crate to be large enough for you puppy to stand up and turn around, but not so large that your puppy could eliminate in the back and return to the front in comfort. Puppies usually do not want to eliminate where they eat, drink, or sleep. The crate should be used at night for he/she to sleep in and during the day when left unsupervised.

2.     Schedule:  It is important to maintain a schedule when house training. Your puppy, on average, can hold their eliminations about 1 hour longer than their age in months (if your puppy is 4 months old, then he/she can hold it for about 5 hours). You want to take your puppy out to eliminate first thing in the morning, after they eat, after heavy play, after sleeping, and throughout the day. Use a command such as “go potty”, and take your puppy outside using the same door, and have he/she on a leash. When taking your puppy outside to eliminate it is not playtime. Repeat your command, “go potty” and when you see he/she sniffing and acting like he/she is about to eliminate softly say, “Yes, go potty”.  While your puppy eliminates say, “Good potty”, then pet and praise your puppy once he/she is finished.

3.     Supervision:  It takes constant supervision, which is why you want to take your puppy on a leash so you can praise and communicate that he/she is doing what you want. I know it seems like a lot of work, but if you let them go outside on their own (in a fenced back yard), then you are not teaching them what it is you want accomplished. That can create more work in the future. Once in your home, your puppy needs constant supervision until they become more reliable with house training. This means utilizing their crate when you cannot watch them, tether a leash to the coffee table, set up “kiddie” gates around your home or use other ways keep them in the same room. Look for cues such as sniffing, whining, hiding, etc to notice if they need to go outside.

4.     Consistency: Everyone in the family will need to follow the house training tips or your puppy will become confused and house training will not be successful. Being consistent with your schedule taking your puppy out will help your training be successful. Utilize a timer on your phone to remind you of the intervals to take your puppy out and continue to follow the tips above.

5.     Discipline: How you discipline your puppy with house training can dictate how successful you will be in training. The first thing to understand with discipline is that it is easier to praise good behavior than to reprimand negative behavior, which is why we praise the puppy when he/she eliminates properly. One method of discipline that works in most situations is the Interrupt, Redirect, and Praise technique. It works like this… you catch your puppy in the act of actual elimination, so you Interrupt – “No puppy”, then Redirect – take your puppy outside following steps above, then Praise – “Good puppy”. Even if your puppy has completely finished eliminating, follow the steps to communicate to he/she what is appropriate. If you don’t actually see your puppy eliminate in the house and you find the elimination, then it is too late to reprimand. For instance, you see the elimination on the floor but your puppy is sleeping on the couch, if you get frustrated (which you will be) and yell or try to discipline, then you are actually disciplining your puppy for sleeping. This can cause your puppy to actually start to hide to eliminate because they have not learned where to go, but they know if their elimination is on the floor, they will be yelled at. This causes anxiety, and what appears to be “guilt” to the owner, but the puppy is really just very confused.

Investing the time and effort now, can set your puppy with a very successful house training experience. Accidents will happen, but how you deal with those accidents can create or decrease success. Pet owners must take the time to provide a predictable schedule, consistency, and proper discipline when necessary.

So what happens when you follow all the steps and house training doesn’t necessarily follow the plan. Below are some tips to help with common questions and issues:

1.     Urinating outside, but defecating in the house:  So you are on the right track for urination, however, puppy will not defecate outside. Several things can help, first, if you are certain your puppy needs to defecate you can actually add an additional command, such as “Go poop”, this will help to differentiate between the two eliminations for you puppy. This is how it works, you have walked and walked and know puppy needs to go, so take your puppy back inside and wait about how long he/she usually waits to defecate inside. Let’s say 5 minutes after you get back inside your puppy defecates inside. Come back in the house, wait 4 minutes, then take he/she back outside and use the command, “Go poop”. Once your puppy defecates outside, use the same technique as above and praise “Good poop!”. Once you does this a couple times, you should see success.

a.    Another issue with not defecating outside is some puppies want more privacy. You can help accommodate them by using a longer leash where they can go around the building or bush.

b.    Issues can arise when using treats for praise. Treats are not bad to use, however, you must remember as we discussed in the discipline section that praise and discipline need to occur in the act. Some puppies will rush eliminations just to get the treat and not completely finish with defecating. Another error can be waiting to treat the puppy when you come back in the house. This rewards the puppy for coming inside, not eliminating outside and can cause this issue of not finishing all eliminations outside.

c.    Feeding a high-quality puppy food will help your puppy utilize more of the food and have less waste. Lower quality foods have “fillers” to fill your puppy, but those “fillers” are not high quality and cause a lot of waste. High-quality food can seem really expensive, but you are feeding less quantity of food because they utilize it better than the lower quality food.

2.     Eliminating in the same place indoors:  Sometimes it seems that the puppy only wants to continue to use one spot inside. The first rule of thumb is to adequately clean the area, especially if it is carpet. A good odor neutralizer is Zero Odor Pet Odor Eliminator (you can actually inject it in the carpet pad to eliminate odors). You can also block access to the area by preventing access to the room, or placing their food/water bowls in the area. “Booby trap” the area by using a remote deterrent such as PetSafe SSScat. This is a can of compressed air with a motion detector on top, once puppy is in the area, a tone will sound and if the puppy doesn’t move, then a spray of compressed air comes out to deter them. You can move it to different locations in the house which is what I like about it.

3.     House training relapse:  What happens if we were house trained and now we are eliminating indoors. The first thing is you need to be sure it is not a medical issue such as a urinary tract infection which is causing us to have accidents. If that is not the issue, then we revisit all the above steps. Keeping a log of your schedule to take your puppy or dog outside, eating times, and times when the eliminations occur the most can help to troubleshoot where you need to make changes in the house training process. Sometimes as pets become senior they can regress in house training. Those reasons are usually medical or behavioral from cognitive dysfunction. 

In summary, creating a predictable, consistent schedule followed by the entire household can ensure successful house training. If relapse occurs, keep a log and back track to the stage where there was no relapse. Try to provide constant supervision, but when accidents happen, don’t lose your cool. Learn from the event and set your puppy up to succeed in the future.

 

Happy Training,

Alison Patrolia, C.V.T.

By traci.kullmer 14 Apr, 2017

The age you get your puppy/dog, genetics, breed, etc. can play a huge role in how they will respond to stimuli. Socialization is of utmost importance. During the first 3-4 months of their lives, events they encounter will influence them either in a positive or negative way. 8 week old puppies have memories of experiences that will be with them the rest of their lives. For example, if you have a yorkie puppy and grab them up quickly because you are concerned about a potential interaction (a larger dog, etc), then the puppy can learn to be fearful of that interaction (larger dog) and act out by being fearful the next time they are in that situation.

So what are we as pet owners to do? First, lets understand the difference between training and behavior. Let’s think of training as manners for the puppy/dog. Normal behaviors occur and they need to be taught how we want them to act with those normal behaviors.   Example, puppies jump up, we need to train them not to jump up by teaching them to sit when approaching so they cannot jump up. Behavior problems are identified as emotional problems such as fear, anxiety, and aggression. These behaviors are not related to training. When dealing with behavior problems it is important to research what is causing these behaviors which sometimes will encompass merging training with the knowledge of the behavior to either desensitize the dog/puppy or help the pet understand how to react in those stressful situations.

Owners can inadvertently cause behavior problems. Remember, we discussed socialization. It is important that puppies be introduced to many situations in a positive, controlled, safe way.   If you will be taking your puppy in a boat with you, then introduce them to the boat on land. Then progress with the boat in the water, then the boat moving in the water. Short, successful, positive sessions. You don’t want to just get him on the boat right a way and take off. If we make big deal about leaving our pets when we leave our homes, or we are nervous about leaving them, we can inadvertently teach them separation anxiety.

Socialization includes taking them places and interacting with people and pets that will be a part of that pet’s lifestyle. The vet clinic is a stressful place for pets. Take them to your vet clinic to get weighed or just walk in and get treats. This will help make their vet visits more fun. If you plan on boarding your pet, then work on crate training because when they board they will be in a smaller area. Plus crate training encourages independence in pets and helps prevent separation anxieties.

At Hub City Dog Training it is important to us that we help you with the needs of your pet whether it is training for manners or combining behavioral relief with training. It can be overwhelming to pet owners on how to deal with “normal” behaviors as well as “abnormal” behavior. This is why early intervention is of utmost importance. The longer you wait the worse and harder to correct (or control the behavior as much as possible) the issue.

Happy Training!!

Alison Patrolia, C.V.T.


Hub City Dog Training staff members are advocates for positive reinforcement and force-free training. We believe that gentleness, patience, and kindness go a lot farther toward effectively teaching an animal than harsher methods ever could. For more information about Hub City Dog Training classes, give us a call at 601-264-5785.

Animal Medical Center of Hattiesburg Blog

By 7016241037 19 Oct, 2017

How many times have you experienced destruction of furniture, toys, or even the yard via digging? You just don’t understand why your dog acts out this way. You provide daily walks and even change up the toys he/she plays with.

Maybe we just haven’t thought about the fact that dogs also have basic physical needs as well as behavioral and emotional needs. Your dog can easily get bored or even frustrated when there is not enough stimulation. However, your dog can become overreactive or stressed if they are too overstimulated. This means, you have to figure out what your dog needs for mental stimulation. The type breed your dog is can help you to decipher what stimulation is best for your dog. Remember that more exercise does not mean it will fulfill the void for mental stimulation.

In last month’s house training blog, we discussed the need for a schedule and consistency. This will help as we incorporate ways to keep you dog busy. Use the list below to help determine what may work best for your dog:

1.    Basic toys – balls, stuffed and squeaky toys, rope toys

2.    Chew and food toys – inedible toys such as Nylabone, food-stuffed toys such as Kong, treat dispensing toys

3.    Homemade toys – cardboard, paper, flexible plastic containers

4.    Food games – hunt for toys or treats (your dog doesn’t necessarily eat out of a dish, but looks for dry food in his/her crate, toy box, or even hide treats in the yard: this is not a good exercise for dogs that guard their food from other pets and/or people)

5.    Training – basic obedience, trick training – go to bed, put away your toys

6.    Fetch games – try variations such as different locations, with obstacles (over and under). If your dog will not give the object have 2 toys to exchange out

7.    Hide-and-seek games – hide treats for your dog to find or even hide people

8.    Exploration exercise – take a hike and allow your dog to safely explore, go in the woods, to a lake

9.    Social engagement – Dog play dates and even doggy daycare

Things to consider with the above list: ensure that toys are safe and nothing can be swallowed and become lodged in your dog. If a toy starts to get torn, throw it away. Supervision will help ensure that toys do not result in a veterinary visit.

Let’s know think about characteristics of your dog and what type of mental stimulation may work best for he/she:

1.    For the dog that chews, shreds and steals items – food toys and puzzle toys can be useful

2.    For the dog that digs – designate a sand box are for him/her, then hide toys and treats in the sand box (if your dog eats the sand, this may not be the best game)

3.    For the dog that sniffs everything and urine marks all different areas – go for a walk and let him/her choose the direction for slow, relaxed walk. Letting him/her investigate the area can be beneficial in allowing him/her to unwind

4.    For the dog that likes to retrieve and chase things – fetch – be creative with what your dog fetches you are not limited just to balls. Think about Frisbee or Kong on a rope, items that bounce weird, and different shapes

5.    For the dog that loves water – take them swimming – include fetch in the water

6.    For the social dog – play dates at the dog park or friends home

Things to consider with the above list: when exploring outdoors and in lakes and ponds, watch for snakes. If you dog is bitten by a snake it is an immediate medical emergency.

This information should help you to determine a good mental stimulation plan that will provide the needed reward for your dog. Think outside the box, and take your dog on new adventures. Of course, ensure that your dog is up for the adventure by referring to the socialization blog. We never want to put our dogs in a stressful situation that can cause anxiety instead of fun. The sky is the limit when it comes to fun exercise and mental stimulation for your dog.

Happy Training!

Alison Patrolia, C.V.T.

By 7016241037 12 Sep, 2017

One of the best feelings is to get a puppy. You do everything right… buy a crate, get the best food, have a plethora of toys, and take your puppy for regular veterinary visits. But then, house training becomes a big challenge. It can be frustrating and even place a wedge between the bond of you and your puppy. Listed below are tips that can make the process more successful for you and your puppy:                 

1.     Crate training: Utilizing a crate is great to encourage successful house training. It also helps develop independence for your puppy. The crate should be fun for your puppy and never used for punishment. You want you crate to be large enough for you puppy to stand up and turn around, but not so large that your puppy could eliminate in the back and return to the front in comfort. Puppies usually do not want to eliminate where they eat, drink, or sleep. The crate should be used at night for he/she to sleep in and during the day when left unsupervised.

2.     Schedule:  It is important to maintain a schedule when house training. Your puppy, on average, can hold their eliminations about 1 hour longer than their age in months (if your puppy is 4 months old, then he/she can hold it for about 5 hours). You want to take your puppy out to eliminate first thing in the morning, after they eat, after heavy play, after sleeping, and throughout the day. Use a command such as “go potty”, and take your puppy outside using the same door, and have he/she on a leash. When taking your puppy outside to eliminate it is not playtime. Repeat your command, “go potty” and when you see he/she sniffing and acting like he/she is about to eliminate softly say, “Yes, go potty”.  While your puppy eliminates say, “Good potty”, then pet and praise your puppy once he/she is finished.

3.     Supervision:  It takes constant supervision, which is why you want to take your puppy on a leash so you can praise and communicate that he/she is doing what you want. I know it seems like a lot of work, but if you let them go outside on their own (in a fenced back yard), then you are not teaching them what it is you want accomplished. That can create more work in the future. Once in your home, your puppy needs constant supervision until they become more reliable with house training. This means utilizing their crate when you cannot watch them, tether a leash to the coffee table, set up “kiddie” gates around your home or use other ways keep them in the same room. Look for cues such as sniffing, whining, hiding, etc to notice if they need to go outside.

4.     Consistency: Everyone in the family will need to follow the house training tips or your puppy will become confused and house training will not be successful. Being consistent with your schedule taking your puppy out will help your training be successful. Utilize a timer on your phone to remind you of the intervals to take your puppy out and continue to follow the tips above.

5.     Discipline: How you discipline your puppy with house training can dictate how successful you will be in training. The first thing to understand with discipline is that it is easier to praise good behavior than to reprimand negative behavior, which is why we praise the puppy when he/she eliminates properly. One method of discipline that works in most situations is the Interrupt, Redirect, and Praise technique. It works like this… you catch your puppy in the act of actual elimination, so you Interrupt – “No puppy”, then Redirect – take your puppy outside following steps above, then Praise – “Good puppy”. Even if your puppy has completely finished eliminating, follow the steps to communicate to he/she what is appropriate. If you don’t actually see your puppy eliminate in the house and you find the elimination, then it is too late to reprimand. For instance, you see the elimination on the floor but your puppy is sleeping on the couch, if you get frustrated (which you will be) and yell or try to discipline, then you are actually disciplining your puppy for sleeping. This can cause your puppy to actually start to hide to eliminate because they have not learned where to go, but they know if their elimination is on the floor, they will be yelled at. This causes anxiety, and what appears to be “guilt” to the owner, but the puppy is really just very confused.

Investing the time and effort now, can set your puppy with a very successful house training experience. Accidents will happen, but how you deal with those accidents can create or decrease success. Pet owners must take the time to provide a predictable schedule, consistency, and proper discipline when necessary.

So what happens when you follow all the steps and house training doesn’t necessarily follow the plan. Below are some tips to help with common questions and issues:

1.     Urinating outside, but defecating in the house:  So you are on the right track for urination, however, puppy will not defecate outside. Several things can help, first, if you are certain your puppy needs to defecate you can actually add an additional command, such as “Go poop”, this will help to differentiate between the two eliminations for you puppy. This is how it works, you have walked and walked and know puppy needs to go, so take your puppy back inside and wait about how long he/she usually waits to defecate inside. Let’s say 5 minutes after you get back inside your puppy defecates inside. Come back in the house, wait 4 minutes, then take he/she back outside and use the command, “Go poop”. Once your puppy defecates outside, use the same technique as above and praise “Good poop!”. Once you does this a couple times, you should see success.

a.    Another issue with not defecating outside is some puppies want more privacy. You can help accommodate them by using a longer leash where they can go around the building or bush.

b.    Issues can arise when using treats for praise. Treats are not bad to use, however, you must remember as we discussed in the discipline section that praise and discipline need to occur in the act. Some puppies will rush eliminations just to get the treat and not completely finish with defecating. Another error can be waiting to treat the puppy when you come back in the house. This rewards the puppy for coming inside, not eliminating outside and can cause this issue of not finishing all eliminations outside.

c.    Feeding a high-quality puppy food will help your puppy utilize more of the food and have less waste. Lower quality foods have “fillers” to fill your puppy, but those “fillers” are not high quality and cause a lot of waste. High-quality food can seem really expensive, but you are feeding less quantity of food because they utilize it better than the lower quality food.

2.     Eliminating in the same place indoors:  Sometimes it seems that the puppy only wants to continue to use one spot inside. The first rule of thumb is to adequately clean the area, especially if it is carpet. A good odor neutralizer is Zero Odor Pet Odor Eliminator (you can actually inject it in the carpet pad to eliminate odors). You can also block access to the area by preventing access to the room, or placing their food/water bowls in the area. “Booby trap” the area by using a remote deterrent such as PetSafe SSScat. This is a can of compressed air with a motion detector on top, once puppy is in the area, a tone will sound and if the puppy doesn’t move, then a spray of compressed air comes out to deter them. You can move it to different locations in the house which is what I like about it.

3.     House training relapse:  What happens if we were house trained and now we are eliminating indoors. The first thing is you need to be sure it is not a medical issue such as a urinary tract infection which is causing us to have accidents. If that is not the issue, then we revisit all the above steps. Keeping a log of your schedule to take your puppy or dog outside, eating times, and times when the eliminations occur the most can help to troubleshoot where you need to make changes in the house training process. Sometimes as pets become senior they can regress in house training. Those reasons are usually medical or behavioral from cognitive dysfunction. 

In summary, creating a predictable, consistent schedule followed by the entire household can ensure successful house training. If relapse occurs, keep a log and back track to the stage where there was no relapse. Try to provide constant supervision, but when accidents happen, don’t lose your cool. Learn from the event and set your puppy up to succeed in the future.

 

Happy Training,

Alison Patrolia, C.V.T.

By traci.kullmer 14 Apr, 2017

The age you get your puppy/dog, genetics, breed, etc. can play a huge role in how they will respond to stimuli. Socialization is of utmost importance. During the first 3-4 months of their lives, events they encounter will influence them either in a positive or negative way. 8 week old puppies have memories of experiences that will be with them the rest of their lives. For example, if you have a yorkie puppy and grab them up quickly because you are concerned about a potential interaction (a larger dog, etc), then the puppy can learn to be fearful of that interaction (larger dog) and act out by being fearful the next time they are in that situation.

So what are we as pet owners to do? First, lets understand the difference between training and behavior. Let’s think of training as manners for the puppy/dog. Normal behaviors occur and they need to be taught how we want them to act with those normal behaviors.   Example, puppies jump up, we need to train them not to jump up by teaching them to sit when approaching so they cannot jump up. Behavior problems are identified as emotional problems such as fear, anxiety, and aggression. These behaviors are not related to training. When dealing with behavior problems it is important to research what is causing these behaviors which sometimes will encompass merging training with the knowledge of the behavior to either desensitize the dog/puppy or help the pet understand how to react in those stressful situations.

Owners can inadvertently cause behavior problems. Remember, we discussed socialization. It is important that puppies be introduced to many situations in a positive, controlled, safe way.   If you will be taking your puppy in a boat with you, then introduce them to the boat on land. Then progress with the boat in the water, then the boat moving in the water. Short, successful, positive sessions. You don’t want to just get him on the boat right a way and take off. If we make big deal about leaving our pets when we leave our homes, or we are nervous about leaving them, we can inadvertently teach them separation anxiety.

Socialization includes taking them places and interacting with people and pets that will be a part of that pet’s lifestyle. The vet clinic is a stressful place for pets. Take them to your vet clinic to get weighed or just walk in and get treats. This will help make their vet visits more fun. If you plan on boarding your pet, then work on crate training because when they board they will be in a smaller area. Plus crate training encourages independence in pets and helps prevent separation anxieties.

At Hub City Dog Training it is important to us that we help you with the needs of your pet whether it is training for manners or combining behavioral relief with training. It can be overwhelming to pet owners on how to deal with “normal” behaviors as well as “abnormal” behavior. This is why early intervention is of utmost importance. The longer you wait the worse and harder to correct (or control the behavior as much as possible) the issue.

Happy Training!!

Alison Patrolia, C.V.T.


Hub City Dog Training staff members are advocates for positive reinforcement and force-free training. We believe that gentleness, patience, and kindness go a lot farther toward effectively teaching an animal than harsher methods ever could. For more information about Hub City Dog Training classes, give us a call at 601-264-5785.

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