First, teach the release word. Choose which word you will use, such as “OK” or “free.” Stand with your puppy in a sit or a stand, toss a treat on the floor, and say your word as he steps forward to get the treat. Repeat this a couple of times until you can say the word first and then toss the treat AFTER he begins to move. This teaches the dog that the release cue means to move your feet.
Erin Ollila believes in the power of words and how a message can inform—and even transform—its intended audience. Her writing can be found all over the internet and in print, and includes interviews, ghostwriting, blog posts, and creative nonfiction. Erin is a geek for SEO and all things social media. She graduated from Fairfield University with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing. Reach out to her on Twitter @ReinventingErin or learn more about her at http://erinollila.com.
Hi, I just got a 9 month old Puggle who I believe may have been mistreated before because she’s very easily alarmed by any sudden sounds even if she’s laying with me and the sound comes from me. It also takes a while before she willingly comes to anyone in the house. It also took a while for her to eat treats and she doesn’t play with toys very often. We got her a crate that she slept in for a week in my room without a problem. The crate has her bed on one side and a piece of fake grass on the other side and she never had any problems with the crate. However 2 days ago I overslept so she ended up being in the crate for 12 hours and peed on the side with the grass. I took her out when I woke up and she still pooped outside and acted normal that day. Since then when we put her in the crate to go to bed she barks and howls and moves around anxiously until someone’s in the room. I’ve tried comforting her and letting her out when she’s quiet and scolding her when she’s yelling but nothing seems to have changed. Help!
I want to provide the help, answers, and hope for dog owners who are struggling, by giving them the compassion and understanding that they deserve.  I am looking for amazing clients who are looking forward to and are really excited about helping their dog,  their family, and ultimately themselves! If you are curious about what we offer or what it is like working with us, make sure to view our very active Facebook and Instagram Pages - I utilize social media to help current and potential clients see me working hands on with dogs, the methods we use, and to help continue education through daily videos and posts. I aim to be as transparent as possible when it comes to what I do, so that folks can see it doesn't have to take months or years to change behaviors and that dogs can learn fast (and have fun in the process)! The success of my clients following our work together is of upmost importance, so we offer many continuing education events like monthly Pack Walks and Group Classes, as well as daily educational posts on Take the Lead's Facebook page. I have helped many families and their dogs, and I can help you, too! I look forward to working with you :)
Take baby steps Dogs, just like people, learn best when new tasks are broken down into small steps. For example, you can’t go out and line dance unless you learn all of the individual steps first! When teaching your dog a new skill, begin with an easy first step and increase difficulty gradually. If you’re training your dog to stay, start by asking her to stay for just 3 seconds. After some practice, try increasing the duration of her stay to 8 seconds. When your dog has mastered an 8-second stay, make things a little harder by increasing the time to 15 seconds. Over the next week or two, continue to gradually increase the duration of the stay from 15 seconds to 30 seconds to a minute to a few minutes, etc. By training systematically and increasing difficulty slowly, you’ll help your dog learn faster in the long run.
Combine the “stand” with other commands. There are many ways to combine commands. After getting your dog to "stand," you might add a “wait” or “stay” command if you want the dog to stand for longer periods of time. You can also follow with a "sit" or "down" to do some “doggy drills,” and gradually increase the distance between you and the dog. Eventually, you'll have your dog performing these commands from across the room.
Dog training classes or private sessions can also be an addition to your own training program. The dog trainer can help you improve the program and customize it to your dog's learning style. Try to be as involved as possible when it comes to your dog's training. You and your dog will be a stronger team when you are directly involved in the training process.
Once the source has been identified, your vet will then be able to devise a proper treatment plan. Now, this may vary greatly depending on the source. If it is just a phobia or fear, they may provide you with specific guidelines and recommendations on how to avoid the trigger from upsetting your dog. If it is something more serious, your vet will create a more tailored treatment plan depending on your dog’s individual needs and requirements.
Step 1: Most dogs will yawn when they are anxious. You can use that to help you catch the yawn. Look for your dog to yawn when he wants to go outside or wants a ball or toy that you are holding. When he yawns, click and treat. Because this trick has to be 'caught' with the clicker, it can be fairly difficult, and you have to.................................

During your sessions, be sure to wait a few minutes between absences. After each short separation, it’s important to make sure that your dog is completely relaxed before you leave again. If you leave again right away, while your dog is still excited about your return from the previous separation, he’ll already feel aroused when he experiences the next absence. This arousal might make him less able to tolerate the next separation, which could make the problem worse rather than better.
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.
The 1980 television series Training Dogs the Woodhouse Way made Barbara Woodhouse a household name in the UK, and the first international celebrity dog trainer.[25] Known for her "no bad dogs" philosophy, Woodhouse was highly critical of "bad owners", particularly those she saw as "overly sentimental".[26] She described the "psychoanalyzing of dogs" as "a lot of rubbish".[27] Her no-nonsense style made her a pop-culture icon, with her emphatic "sit" and catch cry of "walkies" becoming part of the popular vernacular.[28]
In the 1980s veterinarian and animal behaviourist Ian Dunbar discovered that despite evidence on the peak learning periods in animals, few dog trainers worked with puppies before they were six months old.[25] Dunbar founded Sirius Dog Training, the first off-leash training program specifically for puppies, which emphasizes the importance of teaching bite inhibition, sociality, and other basic household manners, to dogs under six months of age.[31] Dunbar has written numerous books, and is known for his international seminar presentations and award-winning videos on puppy and dog behavior and training.[32]
For some dogs that have considerable behavioral problems, there is also a “boot camp” scenario where your dog is taken in by a one on one trainer for approximately a month. In the “boot camp” scenario it is important that you meet with your dog and its trainer periodically to also learn the commands that your dog is learning so that you can take an active role in teaching and practicing obedience with your dog.
You must judge when your dog is able to tolerate an increase in the length of separation. Each dog reacts differently, so there are no standard timelines. Deciding when to increase the time that your dog is alone can be very difficult, and many pet parents make errors. They want treatment to progress quickly, so they expose their dogs to durations that are too long, which provokes anxiety and worsens the problem. To prevent this kind of mistake, watch for signs of stress in your dog. These signs might include dilated pupils, panting, yawning, salivating, trembling, pacing and exuberant greeting. If you detect stress, you should back up and shorten the length of your departures to a point where your dog can relax again. Then start again at that level and progress more slowly.
Alprazolam, Amitriptyline, Clomicalm, and Buspirone are all potential medications that may be prescribed for your pet. The choice will be made by the veterinarian based on your dog’s current health, allergies, medical history, and several other factors. Never use another pet’s medication for your dog even if they’re in the same household. The way pets digest medication and their reaction to it will vary. What has been successful in one pet may not be the case for another.
Hi there, I have a Lasso Apso x Toy Poodle (Jethro) who, I think, is suffering from anxiety as he is very timid throughout the day, barking at every noise and anything outside the house especially people arriving at our neighbour’s house, or people coming to visit our house or even coming into our cul-de-sac. He can hear cars arriving from down the street, he is already growling as they begin to turn in the cup-de-sac. He constantly growls and chases our cat who he has grown up with. She is now 15 years old and he is making her life miserable. We also have an adorable 15 year old Cocker Spaniel who is not as energetic anymore, but they are best friends. The problem with Jethro is that he is becoming so unbearable timid at almost everything and very protective. He is now barking at any animal that appears on the television. To begin with it was just dogs, now it is any animal even cartoon animals. He almost rips the lounge chair by grabbing and shaking the cushion then rushing towards the television growing and barking constantly until there is a scene where the animal/s isn’t there. He has also begun barking and growling at some male characters. It is obvious that he dislikes males as these are his target if one comes anywhere near our house. He is ok when we take him for walks at the dog beach. He is well-behaved with other dogs and people although he does walk in a criss-cross pattern and is quite protective of our cocker spaniel if she wanders off. We have mentioned his anxiety to our vet and they thought is may be due to a urinary infection and took samples for testing but came back negative. We are concerned with the increased nature of his behaviour and worried that he may become so anxious that he may bite someone in the future. He is untrustworthy at present and we daren’t let him out the front of the house without being on a lead during the day. He is also nervous of particular items such as black bowl we have for his dry food. If he gets to the bottom of the bowl it sits and barks until we tip the biscuits out. He is also nervous of our garbage bin when it is in the dark or other strange or unusual objects that may come up. We noticed his behaviour change when he was less than 2 years, after we had renovations done. Builders were in and out of the house lot and not always with our supervision. His first fear was of the broom and he still hates it when I pick up the broom or start the vacuum cleaner. He runs from the room with his tail down. My feeling is that he may have been hit with the broom by the builders and thus his anxiety of the broom and also males… He does not respond to females with the same vengeance. He does not respond in the same way with family members either. He does however, growl and bar his teeth if he is curled up and doesn’t want to be picked up or touched. He has had a recent health check and the vet is not a good place for him, he runs and pulls to get out. He is stiff and hard to relax. I have used massage and music to keep him calm and taken him for longer walks. He is very energetic. Does he need more exercise? I am running out of ideas. He is a lovely little dog and it is distressing for all of us to think he may be suffering from anxiety.
It is important to notice the signs of stress in their early stages; this gives you an opportunity to remove your dog from a situation before his reaction escalates and becomes potentially aggressive or dangerous. Other anxiety intervention tactics, like training, are also more successful if started as soon as possible, before your dog has a chance to become chronically stressed.
I am a graduate of Florida Southern College, class of 2005. Back then my passion was for the arts and I studied graphic design. I found I had a natural knack for reading dogs, so I went out of my way to expand on it. I started with an ABC-DT certification. Once I gained enough experience I joined APDT and got my CGC Evaluator certification. In November, I will be taking the exam for my CPDT-KA. My next goal after that is to try to get my CNWI (canine nose work instructor) certification.
Anxiety is defined as the anticipation of potential dangers from unknown sources. In most cases, dogs suffering from anxiety will develop behavioral issues or bodily reactions to a particular stimulus that is causing their panic and anxiety. The most common form of anxiety is separation anxiety in dogs, which can occur when a dog is left alone for any period of time.
Reinforcement can be anything your dog likes. Most people use small pieces of a “high value” food for training treats — something special — such as dried liver or even just their kibble. Lavish praise or the chance to play with a favorite toy can also be used as a reward. Dogs must be taught to like praise. If you give the dog a treat while saying “Good dog!” in a happy voice, he will learn that praise is a good thing and can be a reward. Some dogs also enjoy petting. Food is often the most convenient way to reinforce behavior.
Prong collars (also called 'pinch collars') are a series of chain links with blunted open ends turned towards the dog's neck. The design of the prong collar is such that it has a limited circumference unlike slip collars which do not have a limit on how far they can constrict on a dog's neck. The limited traction of the martingale chain combined with the angle of the prongs prevents the prongs moving close enough to pinch. The collar is designed to prevent the dog from pulling by applying pressure at each point against the dog's neck.
Step 1: Most dogs will yawn when they are anxious. You can use that to help you catch the yawn. Look for your dog to yawn when he wants to go outside or wants a ball or toy that you are holding. When he yawns, click and treat. Because this trick has to be 'caught' with the clicker, it can be fairly difficult, and you have to.................................
Formal dog training has traditionally been delayed until 6 months of age. Actually, this juvenile stage is a very poor time to start. The dog is learning from every experience and delaying training means missed opportunities for the dog to learn how you would like him to behave. During the juvenile stage, the dog is beginning to solidify adult behavioral patterns and progresses through fear periods. Behaviors learned in puppyhood may need to be changed. In addition, anything that has already been learned or trained incorrectly will need to be undone and re-taught. Puppies are capable of learning much from an early age.
Some cases of anxiety are so severe that your veterinarian may recommend medications or natural therapies. SSRIs and antidepressants are occasionally prescribed for dogs with anxiety, including fluoxetine and clomipramine. For predictable anxiety-producing events like thunderstorms, fireworks, or car rides, your vet might prescribe a medication such as benzodiazepine in conjunction with an antidepressant to help your dog cope with the stress.
3. Muzzle up. If your dog is reactive and big enough that you could lose control if she lunges, consider a good quality muzzle. A muzzled dog is still seen by most people as a dangerous dog, which can lead to some unpleasantness for the owner, but thankfully, the Muzzle Up! Project is trying to get rid of that prejudice and spread the word that a muzzle is a sign of a responsible owner and a safe dog. By making those with aggressive dogs feel safer, muzzles allow both people and dogs to get more enjoyment from being outside.
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.
I have a lab/ collie and he has been driving us nuts for the past couple of month and I believe its anxiety. My story begins. My husband had 2 dogs for the past 14 years. We had to put one to sleep a couple of months ago due to cancer. we also had a cat that was with him for 10 years that we had to put down at the same time as the other dog due to cancer also. We had 4 cats and 2 dogs at one time. My husband went to rehab for 30 days and while he was away all the animals were too much to handle and we couldn’t afford them so we had to give them up to a sanctuary. When he got home from rehab he lived with his parents for a while until be could reconcile our marriage. The dog will not let me sleep he paces wines and barks all the time. I thought it was because he missed my husband so he came back home. it didn’t not solve the problem at all. I don’t know what to do. I feel so bad for him but the house needs to get uninterrupted sleep. I don’t know what to do. Please help me.
PAC Dog Trainings services include puppy training and obedience training. But at PAC we also specialize in behavioral modification. PAC often works with cases of severe anxiety, behavioral and temperment problems, and aggression. Most of PAC's trainer's experience has been with unruly and aggressive dogs using only humane methods and safe controlled techniques to limit liability and possible injury to trainer, owner, dog and participants.
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