She was at the vet last in February when we discovered she had struvite crystals (after a couple leaking accidents). We have changed her diet to prevent them from coming again. And went for a follow up to ensure the crystals were all gone. They are all cleared up now. She is eating and drinking normally and has normal pee and poop. I don’t notice her mouth smelling any different than before.
Noise anxiety can be reduced through desensitization, too. You can play tapes of thunderstorms while dogs experience some sort of pleasurable activity, like getting a belly rub or eating a treat, to help them associate the noise with something good. You can also try blocking the sound with a radio turned on during noisy days when fireworks or other scary noises are occurring.
Dogs are probably the most "verbally" expressive of all domesticated animals, and this only adds to their charm. From the whine of a puppy to the angry growl of an adult, dogs mean what they say. The more you understand these signals, the happier you and your dog will be. At the same time, it's important to know which noises constitute an annoyance, and how to train your dog to stop making them. We'll offer suggestions on teaching a dog to stop barking in this section.
Consider clicker training. Clicker training is a method of delivering immediate praise with the help of a clicker. You can click faster than you can give a treat or pet your dog's head. As such, clicker training reinforces good behavior fast enough for a dog's learning speed. It works by creating a positive association between the click sound and rewards. Eventually, your dog will consider the sound of the clicker itself reward enough for good behavior. You can apply the principle of clicker training to any dog command.
An abrupt change in schedule in terms of when or how long a dog is left alone can trigger the development of separation anxiety. For example, if a dog’s guardian works from home and spends all day with his dog but then gets a new job that requires him to leave his dog alone for six or more hours at a time, the dog might develop separation anxiety because of that change.
It may surprise you that dogs can become stressed or feel anxious in certain situations just like humans. But think about it, how many times have you seen a dog begin to desperately bark as soon as they lose sight of their owner? Other common signs of anxiety in dogs include trying to escape the yard or destroying the living room furniture as soon as their owners have left the building. It’s a lot more common of an issue than one might think.

If possible, try to avoid letting your dog be exposed to dark rooms. Anxious dogs will try and escape and generally look for dark rooms such as a closet. This isn’t an ideal place for them, so try and keep these rooms closed so they are in a well-lit room. Attempt to spot the signs of an oncoming anxiety attack so you may prevent it from happening. If your dog knows how to sit and stay, nuances like these can help reinforce positive reactions to their perceived “negative” environments.
During desensitization to any type of fear, it is essential to ensure that your dog never experiences the full-blown version of whatever provokes his anxiety or fear. He must experience only a low-intensity version that doesn’t frighten him. Otherwise, he won’t learn to feel calm and comfortable in situations that upset him. This means that during treatment for separation anxiety, your dog cannot be left alone except during your desensitization sessions. Fortunately there are plenty of alternative arrangements:
My dog exhibited all the symptoms you are describing. Through trial and error and an ongoing 6 month consult with UPENN Veterinary Behavior Clinic what works best for my dog is: daily prozac does to take the edge off my dog, consistent routine, regular exercise, acrating when I am not home, and sustained release valium on days of predicted thunderstorms, fireworks, etc. The valium I use is Clorazepate …..you can get it cheaper at the pharmacy if you print a coupon at goodrx.com
Great article, Kimberly. Thanks so much. I’ve been looking for info on no food training. I’ve had 5 dogs over the past 20 years, all rescues, all adults. The only one who has been food motivated is the one we got as a young puppy. I started training her right away w/ treats, which worked great for a couple months but I’ve noticed her responsiveness is decreasing as I decrease the use of treats w/ training (and we do a ton of training- adv obedience, tricks, agility and find it) so I’ve been looking for guidance on how to make the transition go more smoothly. Thanks again. Great info! Sally looks like a happy well loved dog.
One thing that I try with my dog is to walk him on-leash in a different but quiet area (e.g. around a quiet part of the neighborhood). Initially, I may just walk him in the front yard or close to the house, so that we can start to have successful walks again. I make sure to reward my dog well for staying calm, and I supervise him very well to make sure that the walk is a very positive experience.
You can also lure a down from a sit or stand by holding a treat in your hand to the dog’s nose and slowly bringing it to the floor. Give the treat when the dog’s elbows touch the floor to start. After a few practices, begin bringing your empty hand to the floor and giving the treat AFTER he lies down. When he can reliably follow your hand signal, begin saying “down” as you move your hand.
A common mistake that many pet owners make when aiding their dog in panic or anxiety is to comfort them. While this may seem like the best solution, it is actually doing more harm than you might think. Most dogs will take this action as a reward, and it will continue to encourage their unfavorable behavior. Instead of comforting them, encourage them to act calmly.
• Destruction: Some pet owners blame their dog’s destructive tendencies on boredom, unaware that anxious and fearful dogs also become destructive dogs. Dogs chew, dig or scratch at doors and other objects in attempts to escape what they fear. The anxiety and fear centers of the brain trigger the fight or flight response — and destruction resulting from fear is usually an attempt toimg class flee whatever triggered their fear reaction.

Pull on the leash? Ignore your commands? Act aggressively to dogs or people? Bark all the time? Jump on you and guests? Steal things from the counters? Chew things it is not supposed to? Not come when called? Get way too excited? Act afraid or fearful? Have separation anxiety? Only listen when you have a treat? Have previous training but can't focus with distractions? Continue to be turned away or kicked out of other dog training programs?
If you are training a puppy, you will likely need to teach them not to bite. Puppies tend to bite on everything they can grab with their mouth and this action should obviously be discouraged from the beginning. One way is to firmly say NO every time you see this. Also, replace the fingers, hand or object that is being bitten with a toy that may be bitten. It is not recommended to ever slap the snout of a puppy; this may actually encourage a firmer grip. Puppies bite to ease the discomfort of teething, so you want to try and channel this into areas which are acceptable.
Are you thinking of adding a new dog to your life? Would you like your current dog to be better behaved? Would you like to train your dog to serve your needs instead being trained to serve its needs? Attending dog classes led by a professional trainer is the best approach, but not everyone can afford classes. These tips are a good start to training your canine companion. There are many philosophies and approaches to dog training, so do your research and learn what works for you and your dog.[1] Regardless on which approach to training your dog you take, building a good relationship with your dog is essential to being able to train effectively.
For a new puppy, a crate helps with housebreaking and provides a safe den for sleeping. When your puppy is used to his crate, it will be easy to take him visiting, or for trips in the car, or to the vet. When we watch TV, we sit in our favorite chairs and our dogs typically choose to lie down in their crates (doors open), watching the same shows we watch (well, sort of!).
The dog’s snout should never be smacked to discourage biting, aside from the fact that negative reinforcement is not an effective training mechanism; smacking the dog’s snout can even encourage a firmer grip. Puppies chew to ease their teething discomfort and replacing the item being bitten with an item that is acceptable is the best way to discourage a negative biting behavior. One other method that is recommended by some trainers is to take your thumb and place it over your dog’s tongue gently holding the bottom jaw with your other four fingers. While holding the tongue, tell your dog “no” firmly and then let go. Repeat this process if biting continues.
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.
Choose your dog's name wisely and be respectful of it. Of course you'll want to pick a name for your new puppy or dog that you love, but for the purposes of training it also helps to consider a short name ending with a strong consonant. This allows you to say his name so that he can always hear it clearly. A strong ending (i.e. Jasper, Jack, Ginger) perks up puppy ears—especially when you place a strong emphasize at the end.
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