My first dog would not poop anywhere in the house than on newspaper. Wow, I thought this is great. Put down some newspaper and problem solved. Then I got my second dog. Maybe she read the paper. That would explain her reluctance to soil any part of it. No sirree. Anywhere in the house but on that newspaper.
The most success I’ve had with training puppies is in the summer. This has nothing to do with the puppy’s intelligence, and everything to do with my preference for going out in the yard in the summer instead of the winter. So, consider the time of year when you decide to get a puppy.
What I have learned is that, although the puppy might want to please you, he won’t be able to control his bladder until he is at least four months old. So, expect accidents even once you think the puppy has finally GOT IT.
If you have recently gotten a puppy, here are some ideas I wish I had thought of with my second dog.
When we first get our cute little puppy, we are highly tolerant. After all, we want him to feel welcomed into our home. Big mistake. Start training as soon as you get your puppy. If you let the puppy pee in the house, he will get the idea that you are okay with that behavior.
Choose a spot in your yard where you want the puppy to eliminate and bring him there each time. I’ll admit I’ve never thought of doing this but it would save the grass for sure.
Bring him out on a leash. This will show him that this is not fun time—no playing—this is toilet time.
You might want to put a bell on your door hanging from a rope. Ring it each time you take the puppy out – better yet get the dog to ring the bell when you are going out. Give the dog a treat if he rings the bell then eliminates. If he rings the bell and doesn’t eliminate…no praising, no treat. You don’t want him ringing that bell whenever the dog wants to take you out.
Have one word for “the business”. It doesn’t have to be sophisticated, unless you want to impress your neighbors. “Do your ca-ca” is fine.
Reward the puppy when he does his business.
Bring him out first thing when he wakes up and 20 minutes after he eats.
Play time should be done only after “the business”.
Clean up after your dog right away. This will prevent him and other dogs from eating poop. See my article on that distasteful (pardon the pun) topic.
If your dog poops in the house, take the poop and place it in his designated ca-ca spot in the yard. (That’s another task that is way easier in the summer.)
So, how will you know when your puppy gets the urge? If you see him doing circles or semi circles, it’s time to take him outside.
A few weeks ago, on our way to Sturgeon Falls for lunch, we spotted a Petting Zoo in Cache Bay. After our meal we stopped in hoping to take a few photos.
The owners were extremely gracious, allowing us to take as many photos as we wanted. The Zoo is a small venture near the Decal Shop ( 11737 17 Hwy, Cache Bay, Ontario). They had a good variety of animals including goats (a favourite with the kids), some ponies ($5 a ride), a large turtle, some rabbits, some lizards and a lion cub. I personally did not get a chance to pet the lion cub but the kids certainly did.
We took many photos and are still going through them.
I was touched by the affection between these two rabbits.
Yesterday I visited an off leash dog park for the first time. It is quite a distance from my home but I was curious. There are two sections in the park and I thought I’d start with the section dedicated to the small dogs. I was leaning on the fence studying the park when a pack of dogs came running over — all of them small, all of them so cute. Then, when I least expected it, a dog, a miniature doberman by the look of him, jumped right up to my face, his mouth set in a growl, his sharp teeth showing, looking very much like he might attack me.
I was stunned. I backed away shocked. Luckily, I was not bit. So, here are the questions that came into my mind.
Why do so few lists of the most dangerous dogs I’ve viewed online rarely include the smaller dogs? I’ve heard some of the smaller breeds, bred to attack rats will attack a dog of their size or smaller. I’ve been bit twice, both times by small dogs on the loose.
Why me? There was someone else with me and this dog took an instant dislike to me. (We were both leaning on the fence, but the dog targeted me.)
Why was the owner pretending she didn’t see anything? She made no attempt to control this dog. There were other small dogs there including a Pomeranian, a Maltese mix, a Cocker Spaniel and several others I could not identify. They came running and some of them barked, but none of the others attacked.
There is a happy ending to my experience. As I was leaving I got approached by a big friendly 6 month old husky. What a doll.
It has been a while since I featured a dog on this blog.
I saw a dog the other day who made me look at him twice, thrice and one more time. The first time I saw someone with dreads, I’m embarrassed and a bit ashamed, I looked at the person the same way. Bob Marlee wore dreads. I’m a big fan of his music.
This dog looks as if he wears his fur in rags – the kind of rags my mom used to use to curl my hair a long long time ago.
When my dog died suddenly of kidney failure, I felt as if I had been kicked in the gut. I was really hurting and I was surprised that the person who had spent the most time with this dog didn’t seem to be nearly as affected as I was. When I checked with him, Jack said, “I don’t miss her because I travel with her all around the planets every night before I go to sleep.” Jack was grieving in his own way. Every night he made up “adventures” and he and our sheltie (his co-pilot) traveled around the galaxies. Eventually, we all healed and once we got another dog, Jack’s space travels included the new dog.
Losing a pet is difficult. No one expects you to grieve, at least not for very long. “It’s just a dog,” people say. “The dog pound is full of puppies that need adopting, just go get yourself another dog.” But, if you’ve had a pet living with you for more than 10 years, let’s face it he/she has probably spent more time with you than anyone else. Others in the family have jobs, they have hobbies, they have friends, they attend sport events and concerts without you. Your dog, on the other hand, is always there at the drop of a leash. A dog will follow you anywhere. A dog will spend time with you, no questions asked.
One day early this spring, I let my dogs view these buffaloes from the comfort of the back seat of our car.
The buffaloes were fairly passive as they munched away at a distance from the car, and my dogs barely showed interest.
Just last week, passing by some horses eating grass near the road, I decided to show the dogs. Now this was much more interesting. The horses were closer and they were moving as they ate away.
Some weeks ago I was at a jousting match put on by the Knights of Valour (https://www.extremejousting.com/). A real bang for my buck and pure entertainment, this was one of the best shows I have attended in some time. In addition to the jousting, there was a juggler, a magician, an acrobat, and a story telling/comedic pirate. The attendees consisted mostly of families. The grounds where the event was held teemed with children running and squealing. I noticed a few dogs.
I didn’t bring my dogs because it was warm–though we found shade. Still, my dogs are furry and I think they would have been warm even under a tree. The dogs that were there did not seem disturbed by all the noise–especially loud during the jousting, but I think my dogs would have found it too much. They were home in the air conditioned comfort. They missed us, that was apparent, but they looked cool and relaxed.
I say, know your dog. My parent’s dog tore the house apart during their absence, broke through the window screen and slid down the porch roof to the back yard. Luckily the yard was fenced. They could not go anywhere without him. Having known of this unfortunate event, we began leaving our dogs home alone when they were puppies. It’s important to begin training them to be alone early on.
Have you ever seen a fat bird? No, probably not. But fat cats and dogs are, unfortunately, not an uncommon sight. I have to admit that my dogs are not on the thin side. I try to cut back on their regular meals but then the treats are slipped in here and there and now the veterinarian is giving me the evil eye. “He had lost weight,” he says, “What happened?” Well…
One reason is that we tend to equate feeding with love. “Good doggy,” I say and offer up a tasty morsel. Of course, if they are in the car with me, I have to reward them for being so well-behaved. (There’s a bag of treats in the glove compartment.) And I always keep a pocket full of treats in case I need to call them back to me in a hurry. I snap the clicker a couple of times, and they come running for their treat. Such good dogs. Then if I want to put them in their “special room” while we eat or sit with our human visitors, they need a treat for enticement. And so it goes.
Thank goodness they like to run after the ball or I just don’t know what they would look like.