I am trying to find a solution for my 11yr old female Husky, Blitzen’s night-time anxiety. This has been going on now for a few months. It’s as if she’s become nocturnal. Around 1a-3a every night she is wide awake and pacing, pawing at the bed, whining, almost hyper ventilating. We have a doggie door and she will go outside and whine the most pathetic sounding sad cry. I try to bring her into my room, but she paces and pants and can’t settle. I am becoming sleep deprived since I cannot sleep a whole night with this behavior. My vet suggested Sam E and Benedryl, both of which had the opposite effect and made her wired instead of calm. I am desperate for a solution for both of our sakes.
At a basic level, owners want dogs with which they can pleasantly share a house, a car, or a walk in the park. Some dogs need only a minimum amount of training to learn to eliminate outside (be housebroken), to sit, to lie down, or to come on command (obey a recall). Many other dogs prove more challenging. New dog owners might find training difficult and fail to make progress, because they expect dogs to think and act like humans, and are surprised and baffled when the dogs don't.
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Laying a solid training foundation will make life with your dog easier and more fun. If you’re not sure where to start, sign up for an in-person obedience class; there’s no better way to train your dog than to practice with an expert IRL. You can also follow any of the helpful links above, and check out our blog archives for additional tips and tricks.


Certain breeds, such as Doberman Pinschers, German Shepherds, Border Collies, Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers, have reputations as being easier to train than others, such as some hounds and sled dogs. Dogs that have been bred to perform one task to the exclusion of all others (such as the Bloodhound or Husky), or that have been bred to work independently from their handler (such as terriers), may be particularly challenging with obedience training.
We offer classes from Canine Good Citizen through obedience competition as well as rally obedience and puppy training and socialization. The club is involved in many activities throughout the year. We attend festivals and fairs doing demonstrations and promoting responsible dog ownership. In January we hold the club’s Obedience and Rally Trial and throughout the year we offer Canine Good Citizen testing and hold Show N Go’s.
This will give your new pup a good foundation for basic obedience! Also, during the training, Offleash K9 can teach you how to house train your dog in order for it to quit having accidents in the house! Additionally, Offleash K9 will train it to let you know when it has to go outside! During these sessions, Offleash K9 also answer any questions you have regarding your new pup or its’ training.

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Dogs have very short attention spans. If you try to take them on a two-hour training sessions, chances are good that they won’t learn much. For most dogs, 15-minutes to half an hour is usually enough to learn a command. In general, you should be doing several short sessions instead of one large one. Spread out these short sessions throughout the day or week and try to avoid marathon sessions. This will ultimately allow them to absorb more information and remember more commands.
For a puppy, they should not be removed from their mother any earlier than about 8 weeks old. This is also just about the perfect time to start training. The best way to teach this skill is by taking the puppy (or dog) outside any time you think they may need to relieve themselves. This should generally be when they first wake up in the morning, after playing, after eating, after drinking and the last thing at night before going to sleep.
Hi! It’s been a while. Hope all your pups are doing wonderful! Looking adorable as always. My Shiba, Reptar, (now 4 years old) has recently developed a fear of thunder. He used to not be bothered by it and would sleep right through storms. Now he tries to bury himself in me, as if he cannot get close enough to me. Of course the excessive panting and shaking occurs simultaneously. I eventually put him in his crate and cover it with a blanket and he calms down and sleeps but will not go in there to be safe on his own in the middle of the night when this happens. Since this fear has developed, the thunderstorms in my area have only occurred in the dead of the night…2am, 3am, 4am….which makes desensitization and conditioning very difficult. If it were to happen in the afternoon or evening I could easily work with Reptar to teach him to be OK with it again. Nothing I do seems to calm him down though. Especially because I am also not thinking with a clear head at 3am. Does Sephy have a fear of thunder? How do you help her or do things like the thundershirt actually work? I feel like it would just cause more anxiety for a Shiba.

Does your dog have anxiety? As any pet owner knows, dogs have personalities and behaviors for different situations. When they’re in their comfort zone, they may be relaxed and mild-mannered, but when agitated, they may become defensive, rowdy, or anxious. If you know the types of situations that cause anxiety in your dog, there are a few solutions you can turn to ease his discomfort.
Discourage him from biting or nipping. Instead of scolding him, a great way to put off your mouthy canine is to pretend that you're in great pain when he's biting or nipping you. He'll be so surprised he's likely to stop immediately. If this doesn't work, try trading a chew toy for your hand or pant leg. The swap trick also works when he's into your favorite shoes. He'll prefer a toy or bone anyway. If all else fails, break up the biting behavior, and then just ignore him.
It typically takes 4-6 months for a puppy to be fully house trained, but some puppies may take up to a year. Size can be a predictor. For instance, smaller breeds have smaller bladders and higher metabolisms and require more frequent trips outside. Your puppy's previous living conditions are another predictor. You may find that you need to help your puppy break old habits in order to establish more desirable ones.
Since dogs can have allergies to certain medications, plants, foods, etc., it is again advisable to work with your veterinarian or a homeopathic specialist for pets to find a healthy solution for your anxious dog. Simply let your vet know you’d rather avoid prescription anti-anxiety drugs or medication or try all organic solutions first and he or she will guide you to options for your pet.  With pets, what works for one dog’s behavior modification may not work for another. Even if you’ve received advice from other pet owners or discussion forums, confirm with your doctor before trying anything new.
Teach your dog to “leave it.” Teaching your dog to move his nose away from food and other items can be beneficial in a number of situations, including when food is accidentally dropped on the floor during family dinner or when your dog seems interested in picking up something potentially harmful during a walk. To teach this command, do the following:
Whether sound desensitization will help or not will depend a lot on the cause of the behavior, which is usually the first thing that I try to pin-point with my dogs. I try to observe them closely, and identify differences in the surrounding context for when they are anxious and when they are not. I try to be very detailed about this, because sometimes, even small things can be significant.
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Practice walking on-leash around the house. Make sure the pup walks at your side. Do lots of stops and have the pup Sit each time. Open the front door, walk out then back in again. This is a great time to teach the pup not to dash out the door. Leaders ALWAYS go through doorways or gates first! This is important body language to a dog. Over emphasize this move by having your dog “wait” as you walk out the door first. Use your body to block the doorway if he starts to push his way through. Body blocks are understandable to dogs, as they use this on each other.
Socialization should begin as soon as you get your puppy and often this means at 7 weeks of age. Puppies naturally accept new people, other species and introduction to new situations during the socialization period which occurs between 7 and 14 to 16 weeks of age. This period provides an opportunity for a myriad of introductions that will provide positive memories that last a life time. Puppies are eager, exploratory and uninhibited during this period and it is important to take advantage of this enthusiasm. Be sure to protect your puppy during this period and ensure that all experiences are positive, fun and not fear evoking.
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Providing lots of physical and mental stimulation is a vital part of treating many behavior problems, especially those involving anxiety. Exercising your dog’s mind and body can greatly enrich his life, decrease stress and provide appropriate outlets for normal dog behaviors. Additionally, a physically and mentally tired dog doesn’t have much excess energy to expend when he’s left alone. To keep your dog busy and happy, try the following suggestions:
Teach him to come when called. Come Jasper! Good boy! Teaching him to come is the command to be mastered first and foremost. And since he'll be coming to you, your alpha status will be reinforced. Get on his level and tell him to come using his name. When he does, make a big deal using positive reinforcement. Then try it when he's busy with something interesting. You'll really see the benefits of perfecting this command early as he gets older.
My unique method of balanced dog training brings peace and harmony into the lives of committed clients and their families, who understand that real change is possible when the right approach to their dog's behavior is consistently applied and practiced.  My programs serve to bridge the gap between human and dog communication, by helping you and your dog improve your relationship and bring peace into your life!  I can relate to many of my clients, because I too used to struggle with my dogs and tried many different training methods that were not effective for us.  I am so fortunate that I am able to help my clients - especially those who have tried other training already - find a successful program that gives them consistency, peace of mind, predictability, and a lifestyle that they can enjoy with their dog and family.
Dogs are highly motivated by praise and rewards. Create positive associations for your puppy when he follows your commands by verbally encouraging him or sharing a bite of kibble or healthy dog treats. Rewards not only make training more fun for your pet, but also give him something to work for. Just make sure that treats don't make up more than ten percent of his caloric intake each day to ensure he doesn't put on any unnecessary weight.
Typical positive reinforcement events will satisfy some physiological or psychological need, so it can be food, a game, or a demonstration of affection. Different dogs will find different things reinforcing. Negative reinforcement occurs when a dog discovers that a particular response ends the presentation of an aversive stimulus. An aversive is anything that the dog does not like, such as verbal admonishment, or a tightened choke chain.[39]
How is it possible to tell if your dog is suffering from anxiety without them being able to communicate that to you verbally? Well actually, it’s quite simple. Dogs are intelligent creatures and are able to express what they are thinking and how they feel through body language and behavior. From there, it is your duty as their owner to be able to depict these cues and figure out what your pup is trying to say.
Scents can also help calm a dog's anxiety, and DAP is a popular option. It is a synthetic chemical that is based on a hormone produced by lactating female dogs that help keep her puppies calm and increase their bond with her. While scientific studies have shown that DAP does work with puppies, it isn't as clear if it works with anxious adult dogs. Even so, there is the possibility that it can help, and it can be one of several tools used to help an anxious dog. It come as a plug-in diffuser with vials that last about 30 days, and humans aren't able to smell it.
Frequently provide food puzzle toys. You can feed your dog his meals in these toys or stuff them with a little peanut butter, cheese or yogurt. Also give your dog a variety of attractive edible and inedible chew things. Puzzle toys and chew items encourage chewing and licking, which have been shown to have a calming effect on dogs. Be sure to provide them whenever you leave your dog alone.
Similarly, if you're having trouble with at-home puppy obedience training or would simply like a little guidance from someone with experience, a professional dog trainer will be able to help you. Trainers offer at-home classes or training at their facility. Before hiring anyone, do some research to ensure they're credentialed. Similarly, speak with them about their training philosophy to make sure their efforts are in line with how you want to educate your pet. If you need a referral, contact your veterinarian or ask a friend who recently went through professional training with their own new dog.
Both conventional and holistic veterinarians treat social dog anxiety with desensitization techniques. The holistic approach differs in that it recommended a decrease in the frequency of vaccinations or at least a delay of giving any vaccines until the patient is behaving more normally. The rabies vaccination may especially exacerbate an aggressive personality.
If he's an older dog, he's probably used to his name; however, changing it isn't out of the question. If he's from a shelter, they may neglect to tell you that he has a temporary name assigned to him by staff. If he's from a breeder, he'll come to you with a long name, which you may want to shorten, or change. And if he's coming out of an abusive situation, a new name may represent a fresh start. But we're lucky: dogs are extremely adaptable. And soon enough, if you use it consistently, he will respond to his new name.
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