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.
Electronic training involves the use of an electric shock as an aversive. Common forms are collars which can be triggered remotely, or that are triggered by barking, fencing that delivers a shock when a dog wearing a special collar crosses a buried wire, and mats that can be placed on furniture to deliver a shock. Some aids deliver an aversive such as a spray of citronella when triggered.[61] The use of electric shock aversives for training dogs is the subject of considerable controversy. Supporters claim that the use of electronic devices allows training at a distance and the potential to eliminate self-rewarding behaviour, and point out that properly used, they have less risk of stress and injury than mechanical devices, such as choke chains. Opponents cite the risks of physical and psychological trauma associated with incorrect or abusive use.[62]
I found that looking for alternative ways to connect with Sally outside of food, such as play, life rewards, and affection, deepened our relationship. I also found that thinking about Sally’s behavior and our quality of life more holistically, outside of simple obedience cues, helped me address some overwhelming issues that I wasn’t sure how to tackle at first, such as getting and keeping her attention in distracting situations.
Every dog and every owner is different, and that means that no “one” type of obedience training is best for everyone. Understanding what type of training is right for you and your dog is a personal decision based on what you both need and expect from the training experience. There are some factors that you will want to consider when choosing a method of teaching obedience to your dog.
Crate training is a process, and you’ll have to put some training into getting your new puppy to love her crate. Don’t worry - Canis Major can help with crate training if you’re feeling stuck. It’s worth it for both the practical training benefits and the possibility of future crate needs! Without some sort of confinement, potty training a puppy is a huge uphill battle.
Moving to a new environment can be very stressful for a dog. After I moved, I quickly set up a fixed routine and schedule for my dog. I also set up a consistent set of rules and increased my level of supervision. I took my dog out for longer hikes in quiet and relaxing trails, so that he can have fun and chill out (only if the issue is stress based).
In this guide, you will learn everything you need to know about the signs and symptoms of anxiety in dogs. With a little guidance, you will be able to tell if your dog is feeling stressed and learn ways to help them overcome it. By avoiding triggers and training them to react differently, you will be able to reduce their anxiety and exterminate those bad behaviors.
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.

As you attempt to decode your dog’s body language, take the situation he is in into account. In one context, a dog licking his lips may be expressing fear or anxiety; in another context, the same dog may lick his lips in anticipation of a treat. And some dogs lick their lips when they feel nauseous. Consider your dog’s overall behavior, not just one motion or gesture, when you assess his stress level. Be particularly aware of behavior that seems out of character for your dog.

I have two 5 month old great dane/ german shepherd mixes. They did not listen to me at all. Marc came out and showed me exactly what to do and the results are amazing. I thought there was no hope for me or my dogs and that i was going to waste my money. Totally worth the money. Not only did Marc show me what to do, he explained why it works. I cant...


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 :)
These behaviors can be diminished only when a plan of action is in course. You can’t expect the anxiety just to disappear when nothing has been done to cure it. Just like any other health condition, a dog suffering from this kind of problem will need to seek professional help from their veterinarian to identify the underlying cause. From there, your vet will be able to recommend tips on how to avoid these triggers or provide anti-anxiety medication for dogs if their condition is in a severe stage.  
While barking and whining can get a little annoying or even embarrassing, you need to remember that it is a natural part of your dog's behavior and communication. So, it's important to work with your pup to know when it is okay to bark and when it is not. After all, you want your dog to alert you if he hears an intruder, but not every time he sees a squirrel.
If your dog exhibits a behavior you don’t like, there is a strong likelihood that it’s something that has been reinforced before. A great example is when your dog brings you a toy and barks to entice you to throw it. You throw the toy. Your dog has just learned that barking gets you to do what he wants. You say “no,” and he barks even more. Heaven forbid you give in and throw the toy now! Why? Because you will have taught him persistence pays off. Before you know it you’ll have a dog that barks and barks every time he wants something. The solution? Ignore his barking or ask him to do something for you (like “sit”) before you throw his toy.

Punishment or aversive techniques will do little to stop these anxious dog behaviors in the long-run, because punishment does not address the source of the problem, which is the dog’s anxiety. In fact, suppression of these displacement behaviors, through pain and dominance methods, will make the problem worse, because pain increases stress and uncertainty.
A Hungarian dog training group called Népszigeti Kutyaiskola use a variation of model-rival training which they describe as the Mirror Method. The mirror method philosophy is that dogs instinctively learn by following the example of others in their social sphere. Core to the program is including the dog in all aspects of the owner's life and positive reinforcement of copying behaviors. Mirror method dog training relies on using a dog's natural instincts and inclinations rather than working against them.[67]
DoggieBuddy.com is a free online resource developed to help dog owners. We noticed that you usually have to pay for the majority of resources out there that are really beneficial to dog owners, so we decided that there should be a place where quality content is made available for dog owners like yourself—for free. Although we might have some paid content to keep DoggieBuddy running, all information on this site is free. Our goal is to help you grow a stronger, more worthwhile bond with your dog, a bond that will last a lifetime.

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.
"Fur & Feathers Pet Resort training program with Jennifer is awesome.  She explained everything in detail and then applied it to the dogs. She took the time to help me with our two dogs. The program was structured and hands on.  I was provided a detailed report and was given a comprehensive departure lesson and shown what was done during Heidi and Gunnar’s training stay." - Nancy, Oakland, FL
Once I figure out the most likely trigger, I do desensitization exercises to help my dog build confidence and to teach her new ways to cope with her stress. At the same time, I also try to manage her environment, so that she does not go through more panic attacks. For example, with the garbage truck, I just changed our schedule so that we do not accidentally encounter a garbage truck when we are outside and far from home. Then, when my dog is ready (after the taped sound desensitization exercises), I expose her to the truck slowly and in a controlled way – first when we are inside the house, by the door, in the front-yard and so on.
Sit on the floor with him or on the sofa, if you plan to allow him on the furniture. Love on him and talk to him, so he gets to know the sound of your voice and touch of your hand. This is a great time to start teaching him that it’s OK for you to touch his paws, look inside or sniff his ears, rub his belly, touch his tail and groom him with a soft brush.
Remember that dogs are a lot like humans- they make mistakes. Knowing this, you cannot expect them to perfect a technique or command the first time around. As a matter of fact, you shouldn’t expect them to catch on in the first few tries. Instead of getting frustrated that your dog isn’t catching on, simply correct them while the mistake is happening. With dogs, fixing a mistake later is considered too late.
There is a normal, natural fear period that begins around 14 to 16 weeks. During this period, a puppy may become wary and suspicious of new people, species or experiences. This is a normal adaptive process. Watch your puppy closely for signs of fear (cowering, urinating, and refusal of food treats). Avoid pushing or overwhelming your puppy during this developmental stage.

As you attempt to decode your dog’s body language, take the situation he is in into account. In one context, a dog licking his lips may be expressing fear or anxiety; in another context, the same dog may lick his lips in anticipation of a treat. And some dogs lick their lips when they feel nauseous. Consider your dog’s overall behavior, not just one motion or gesture, when you assess his stress level. Be particularly aware of behavior that seems out of character for your dog. 

Punishment is operationally defined as an event that lowers the probability of the behavior that it follows. It is not "punishment" in the common sense of the word,[40] and does not mean physical or psychological harm and most certainly does not mean abuse. Punishment simply involves the presentation of an undesired consequence (positive punishment) when the wrong behavior is performed, such as a snap of the leash, or the removal of a desired consequence (negative punishment) when the wrong behavior is performed, such as the trainer eating the cheese that would have been the reward.[41] A behavior that has previously been developed may cease if reinforcement stops; this is called extinction. A dog that paws its owner for attention will eventually stop if it no longer receives attention.[42]
You may find that an older dog latches on to housebreaking at a faster pace than a younger puppy. Housebreaking is most efficiently taught by taking your new puppy outside at any point at which you believe he or she needs to use the bathroom. Most frequently puppies will need to go after waking up, after playing, after eating, after drinking, as well as first thing in the morning and first thing at night. Larger dogs will need to go to the bathroom considerably less than puppies throughout the day, but when housetraining they should be taken outside after sleeping and after eating as well as first thing in the morning and first thing at night.
Puppy biting is normal and necessary. Puppies need to learn how to control the pressure of their bite. Allow the pup to bite your hands. When you feel pressure more than a light touch, squeal “Ouch!”, get up and walk into another room. This is how littermates play with each other. If one playmate bites too hard, the other yelps and walks away to lick its wounds. The biter learns to soften its mouth or risk losing its playmate. Loss of a playmate is more understandable to the pup than punishment.
8. Know your limits. If you’re really out of your depth, or your dog represents a serious danger to you or your children, it’s okay to consider rehoming. Training and medications are expensive, and anxious dogs often require a lifetime commitment. In some cases, it’s safer for you and better for the dog to find a new home where she can get what she needs if you don’t have the resources or the situation to provide it. You’re not a bad person or a failure—you’re making the wisest, kindest choice in the circumstances.

Begin doorway “wait”-training early. Teaching a dog to respect the threshold is important. You do not want a dog that runs out the door every time it opens — that could be dangerous for him. Doorway training doesn't need to happen every single time you go through a doorway. But you should make the most of your training opportunities early in your puppy's life.
My Shiba Inu is 22 months old and he has always been a good traveler. 3 months ago he became extremely anxious whem traveling in the car with me. He makes the yowling Shiba noises and paces and tries to chew my seatbelt from the back seat. He is calmer when we ride with a friend and I can be a passenger with him. The only thing that occurred in our travels last October that could have triggered this is 3 different 40 mile trips in the rain. He became increasingly anxious during each trip. Portions of the road were slanted so the rain beat up underneath the car. I’ve tried sitting in a parked car with him while giving him treats if he can remain calm whilevthe carvis stationary. It helped temporarily. Do you have any better tips on desensitizing? They are such a bright breed. Driving now seems to pose a threat to him.
Aggressive behavior is the most common reason that people seek professional training for their dogs. Aggressive dogs require careful evaluation from a professional to accurately classify and diagnose the behavior. Puppies that display aggressive behavior are often diagnosed as undersocialized or hyperactive, and may evolve out of that behavior with regular obedience training. However, dogs with real aggression issues require specialized training from a behaviorist or trainer who understands genetic and hereditary factors, types of aggression, environmental factors and aggressive treatment methods. The number one suggestion when seeking an aggressive behavior specialist is to ask a trusted veterinarian. Dog rescues or other professionals may also have good referrals.
We got our dog a year ago (shes 2 now). When we first got her the only thing that made her anxious were thunderstorms. In the last couple months we’ve noticed she seems anxious/fearful more often, and we can’t put our finger on what may trigger this behaviour. She will no longer come into the den where we watch tv and her bed is. If we are in that room she goes upstairs. She won’t sleep in our bed, which she did every night before. She won’t go for a walk in the evening (sun still out). we can’t even get her to leave the front step in the evening.
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.
Essentially, dogs learn to respond properly to basic commands in obedience class--and humans learn how to properly give those commands. Dogs and owners will also learn how to communicate with each other, and how to avoid distractions or disturbances from the outside. No matter which method of dog training is used, it is necessary to be consistent and committed in order to train a dog. Also, it’s important that a pet owner understand their dog’s temperament and hereditary factors, and find a class and method that is appropriate.
Ask the breeder or rescue facility/group that you got your dog from f they observed any signs of anxiety. Dogs will develop anxiety in the earlier stages of their life  [14 weeks old] and how they interacted with other dogs after birth could affect their anxiety. Dogs that come from puppy mills could have higher chances of anxiety due to the conditions they were exposed to right after birth. 
Most training schools are happy to allow you to attend and observe (leave Fido at home for this) a class or two to be sure the style of instruction fits with your beliefs. Dogs learn best through progressive reinforcement training; rewarding the dog for making the right choice and withholding rewards, or ignoring the dog for making an incorrect choice.
Once your dog has been diagnosed with anxiety, you can work on figuring out how to solve this issue and get them back to living a normal, relaxed life. Depending on the severity of the issue, the vet may prescribe medication or come up with a specific treatment plan to make your dog feel more comfortable. Anti-anxiety medication may be prescribed, however, this is usually in the last case scenario.
Bringing a young pup into our lives is a big responsibility and commitment to fulfill. Our puppies have a long list of requirements and deadlines that must be met for their well-being and longevity. Tasks like puppy house training, crate training, puppy socialization, leash training and basic obedience need to be addressed right from the very start.

The next option is called luring. Get down in front of your puppy, holding a treat as a lure. Put the treat right in front of the pup’s nose, then slowly lift the food above his head. He will probably sit as he lifts his head to nibble at the treat. Allow him to eat the treat when his bottom touches the ground. Repeat one or two times with the food lure, then remove the food and use just your empty hand, but continue to reward the puppy after he sits. Once he understands the hand signal to sit, you can begin saying “sit” right before you give the hand signal.


The training process with your dog is a process that takes both time and patience and a willingness to learn for both of you. Your dog is just as reliant on your ability to teach its commands as you are reliant upon your dog to learn its commands. The most important factor for you as an obedience trainer is to make sure that you show your dog exactly what you expect from it. Showing your dog what you expect is sometimes a matter of positioning your dog into the position you are asking him to assume and sometimes it is a matter of rewarding the correct position when it happens.


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.
You can start your puppy off on the right paw by teaching good manners from the moment you bring him home. Every interaction that you have with your puppy is a learning opportunity, and with gentle guidance, you can help him understand important lessons like how to greet new friends without jumping up, how to wait quietly for dinner and what to do with those puppy teeth. 
The foundation of training should be based on positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement is the process of giving a dog (or person!) a reward to encourage the behavior you want, like getting a pay check for going to work. The idea is not to bribe the behavior but to train it using something your dog values.  Avoid using punishment such as leash corrections or yelling. Punishment can cause a dog to become confused and unsure about what is being asked of him.  It is important to remember that we can’t expect dogs to know what they don’t know – just like you wouldn’t expect a 2-year-old child to know how to tie his shoes. Patience will go a long way in helping your new puppy learn how to behave.
If your dog has been diagnosed with anxiety, you can also try to avoid or prevent situations that trigger your dog’s anxiety. For example, if you know that your dog grows anxious around large groups of dogs, you should avoid dog parks. Avoidance does not mean that you need to put your life on hold, but it can reduce some of the stress on you and your dog.
When considering treating your dog for anxiety, it is important to know the source of the anxiety. Is your dog anxious about being left alone? Being confined? Is the anxiety caused by loud noise, or travel, or sudden changes in environment or routine? Some dogs have phobias of certain objects, types of people, or specific situations. The source greatly informs the treatment. For example, calming music might help a dog with separation anxiety, but won't do much to help a dog who has anxiety about walking in crowded places. There are pharmaceuticals available from veterinarians for extreme cases, but to minimize medicating your dog and experiencing any potential side-effects, try these options before going in for a prescription.

Everyone loves a good massage, and the same can be said for our pets. Massage can help to calm an anxious dog by using long, slow strokes so soothe the nerves. A popular dog massage method is called TTouch, created by Linda Tellington-Jones. It is "a method based on circular movements of the fingers and hands all over the body. The intent of the TTouch is to activate the function of the cells and awaken cellular intelligence." The result is a relaxed dog. Plus, studies have shown that petting a dog or cat can help calm your own nerves, so it is a win-win solution. It's easy to find guides for how to massage your dog to help calm her.


Hi Caitlin, Kimberly recently had a baby and thus, is not currently responding to comments, but I wanted to thank you. We read through your thoughts and agree with many of them. So, we made some minor updates to our content based on your feedback and agree that this makes for a much stronger and more encouraging article. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts so we could make our content even better for our readers.
It's important with all dog training but especially with young puppies to use lots of encouragement, praise and rewards (positive reinforcement) in your training. Start your puppy training sessions as soon as your little puppy arrives at your home - it's never too early. Set your puppy up to succeed, concentrate on developing desirable habits in your puppy and preventing undesirable behavior. It's much a better alternative to put your puppy on the right path from the start, rather than trying to correct established problem behaviors later on.
Question— We have a 10 year old yellow lab. He has spent most of his life as an outside kennel dog with a nice warm house. In the winter he will be kept in the heated garage and on occasion come in the house. Then in the spring he will move back out. This past year he started crying by the front door and one night got very upset and started chewing on the front door wanting to come in. Now in the nice weather he no longer wants to be out in the kennel very long, ESP near evening. He will chew through the wire to get out. What is going on with him?
Once you have your puppy you must determine what you will need the dog to do for you in order to guide its training. Once this is established you can begin bonding with your puppy. This helps create a baseline for your dog to recognize when you are in a relaxed state and when you are beginning to experience anxiety – dogs are very intuitive so the right dog will pick up on this naturally.
Among the many important responsibilities dog owners have, training a dog is among the most important. Well-trained pets are easier to care for and love, cause less damage to your home (and theirs), and live happier lives. In this article, we cover many of the basics of dog training. But we also cover some important facets of dogs themselves -- which you need to be familiar with in order to communicate with your pooch.These include how dogs communicate to you through body language and noises. Dogs send myriad messages with their bodies and their voices -- this is one reason why they're so fascinating and beloved. The more you understand their messages, the more you understand them and how your own messages are being understood. Read this entire article carefully -- there are three sections after this one -- and then put the wisdom into practice. Here's what we'll cover:
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.
Training should be a pleasure for both you and your dog. Granted, there are often challenges as you work towards better manners but if you find yourself becoming frequently frustrated with your dog, it’s time to get help. Frustration is only a few degrees away from anger and you probably won’t be able to make progress trying to train your dog when you’re feeling upset.
Step 1: Have your dog lay down. Wait for him to stand up. When he stands up, click and treat. Repeat this action several times until he learns that he has to stand up in order to get his treat. Standing is so natural that it is likely that the dog won't immediately understand why he is being rewarded, so it may take more repetition than usual. (Initially, it's okay to click even if.............................................
Hi Lee! I just wanted to leave you a message real quick and let you know we had a great first day. We went out for a little bit and he did rather well. In the evening, there are a few instances where he would jump up or start to bite and we implemented the bah and a quick flick of leash and he looked up to give us his attention. We are truly amaze...
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