During the pandemic, many people have opted for private consults over group puppy classes. The consults can be done in-home or virtually and provide more personalized attention than in a group setting. Private consults can be customized to the dog’s learning style and, since they are private, there is no need to travel or share space with other dogs. With fewer distractions, many dogs and their caregivers find that the training is less stressful!
In Part 1 of How to Create a Safe Place for Your Dog, KPA faculty member Debbie Martin demonstrated how to establish a safe station for your dog when she is feeling anxious or fearful. Now, in Part 2, Debbie demonstrates how to desensitize a dog to sounds that cause anxiety and fear, and how to teach her to go to the safe place when she hears the sounds.
Teaching your dog to tell the difference between left and right on cue is not only fun, but the skill can be handy when you are walking on hiking trails. To begin teaching this behavior, you will need to set up two cones and teach your dog to touch a specific cone.
The bow is not only an impressive trick, but is also one of the critical skills in canine freestyle routines. In this video, multiple International Freestyle Champion Michele Pouliot demonstrates how to teach the bow when starting in the down position.
Many people feel guilty about crate training their dogs, as they think that confinement is cruel. However, when crate training is introduced positively, it can be extremely beneficial for both you and your dog. The crate can become a place where your dog feels safe and calm.
Teaching your dog to hold an object builds a solid foundation for teaching advanced behaviors for dog sports, such as retrieve. To teach the hold behavior, choose an object that your dog likes and hold it in front of your dog’s muzzle. Click and treat when your dog shows any interest in the object. Once the dog understands that interacting with the object is rewarding, slowly increase the criteria until the dog is nosing the object and, eventually, putting his mouth on it. Remember: never put the object into the dog’s mouth. The dog should grab the object willingly.
One of the most useful (and easy) behaviors that you can teach your cat is to sit on cue. Not only will the sit behavior impress your friends, but teaching a sit helps manage unwanted behaviors, like being underfoot when you are preparing dinner (his or yours!) or begging at the dinner table.
When they think about adding a new dog to the family, many people dream of long, leisurely strolls with their dogs walking beside them nicely. However, leash pulling is one of the most common complaints that pet parents have; it is one reason dogs are surrendered to shelters. By teaching shelter dogs to walk nicely on a leash, shelters can increase adoptions as well as decrease the chances that adopted dogs will be returned.
Shaping is the process of breaking down a behavior into small steps and reinforcing each small step as you work toward the final goal behavior. It is a great tool for teaching complex behaviors, as well as for increasing confidence in dogs that are hesitant to try new things.
Puppy socialization is not just about playing with other puppies or being petted by humans. Practicing body handling, introducing novel objects, and desensitizing puppies to sounds are all key steps for ensuring that puppies are comfortable in all situations. The goal is to create fun and positive experiences, not just any ordinary exposures! In this video, KPA CTP Holly Ovington demonstrates how to expose your puppy to a multitude of situations and environments.