Dog Training, Tips, Tricks, and Plenty of Good Advice

Weather

Cabin Fever

Not all dogs get out and enjoy winter weather like this guy! So, we thought it might be good to post the following article about cabin fever:

Going inside – and staying there – provides physical protection from the elements, but also opens the door to a mental hazard: boredom. A bored dog can wreak considerable havoc on his household in the form of excessive barking, hyperactivity, and destructiveness. Worse still, if the dog’s efforts to relieve his boredom prompt him to partake of poisonous plants or other toxic substances, he’ll need immediate veterinary attention, and you are likely to face a significant bill.

To prevent such occurrences, be sure to dog-proof your home; in other words, put any toxic, hazardous, or other forbidden items beyond your dog’s reach. Then, find ways to provide your dog with plenty of indoor physical and mental exercise. Here are some activities that you and your dog can do together indoors to help the two of you stay sane:

  • Fetch:

A rousing game of fetch – particularly if it requires your dog to go up and down some stairs a few times – can give him a good physical work out.

  • Tug-of-war:

As long as you are not having aggression problems with your dog, a good tug session can siphon off considerable excess canine energy. Rules of the game: The person needs to start the game, the person needs to end the game, and most of the time the person needs to win the game.

  • Hide the toy:

To give your dog a mental workout, try hiding a toy or treat and then directing him to find it. Hold the item for him to see, then place him in another room so he can’t see where you hide the object. Once you’ve hidden the toy, allow him to come out and look for it. When teaching this game, put the toy or treat in plain sight, gradually increase the difficulty until your dog understands how to look for it.

Source: The Family Dog

Dressing Your Dog For The Weather

Getting a sweater and booties to protect your dog from the elements is one thing. Actually getting your dog to wear that sweater and booties is quite another. If you’re determined to outfit your canine companion in winter garb, keep the following tips in mind.

Measure Up: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when choosing what size sweater and boots to buy for your dog. If his measurements place him between two sizes, opt for the larger size.

Prepare Ahead Of Time: Don’t wait until the first snowfall to acquaint your dog with a new sweater and footwear. Instead, introduce him to such garb well before the forecast is white. That way, your dog is more likely to don his winter gear calmly by the time you really need to use it.

Take it slowly: Don’t expect your dog to accept either a sweater or booties immediately. Take the time to introduce these items to him slowly. If you’re trying to acquaint him with a sweater, start by putting just his head through it. After he’s done that successfully and easily several times, put one leg through. Once he’s accepted putting his head and one leg through the sweater, do the other leg.

Treat him right: A dog might learn the art of getting dressed for winter a lot faster if you offer some tasty treats as an incentive. For example, encourage your dog to put his head through the sweater in order to gain the treat that you’re holding on the other side of the garment. Once he’s got the sweater on over his head, take the sweater off, and repeat a few more times. To persuade him to give booties a try, give him a treat as soon as you’ve successfully placed one bootie on. The idea is to help your dog associate these garments with good things – in this case, treats.

Source: Susan McCullough

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