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Puppies

How Much Sleep Do Puppies Need?

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

A lot of new puppy owners grossly underestimate the amount of rest that young puppies need. When they first come home, puppies should be getting around 20 hours of rest each day, yet many puppies don’t get anywhere near that much. It’s not uncommon for owners to mistake an overtired puppy for an under stimulated puppy, and try to fit more and more...

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Problem Behaviours

Why You Shouldn't Say "I Can Take A Bone Off My Dog"

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

As with many aspects of dog training, when teaching a “give” cue it’s important to consider not just the end result (does the dog drop the item from their mouth) but also the dog’s emotional state. The reason that this is so important when teaching give is that creating a negative association with surrendering valuable items to a human is one of th...

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Puppies

Making Grooming & Vet Care Easier With Cooperative Care

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Does your dog struggle with husbandry behaviours like nail clipping, brushing, or baths? Do they wiggle and panic when they’re held still for a vet exam or a needle? We highly recommend practising COOPERATIVE CARE. Cooperative care is when your dog willingly participates in grooming or veterinary procedures, without being forced to. The most import...

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Canine Behavioural Science

Operant Conditioning Quadrants & Why Dogs Do Things

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Ever wondered “why does my dog jump on guests” or “why doesn’t my dog come when called”? If you boil scientific dog training down to it’s simplest elements, there are four scenarios that determine which behaviours your dog will keep doing, and which behaviours they’ll stop. These are known as the four quadrants of operant conditioning, and this is...

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Puppies

Avoiding Puppy Destruction: Confinement Training

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Why is setting up a puppy proof area for your young dog important? Because leaving a puppy or adolescent unattended all day with full access to your house or yard is like leaving a human toddler unattended in a toy store for the whole day – there’s gonna be a mess! Puppies are inquisitive and full of energy, and left with no boundaries it’s perfect...

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Reactive Dogs

Working Under Threshold - Using Treats To Help Reactivity

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

“I’ve tried giving them treats around other dogs already” is a common concern that trainers hear when helping the owners of reactive dogs. Many people have read articles or seen videos on how using food can help a reactive dog. When they try to use this strategy on their own dog, however, they often miss a couple of crucial components that prevent...

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Puppies

Why You Shouldn't Let Your Puppy Meet Dogs On Leash

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

While supervised off leash play with other dogs is a crucial part of socialising a young puppy, it is also very important to teach a new puppy that there are dogs that they DON’T get to meet. Many new puppy owners, either fretting about socialising their puppy to enough dogs in their sensitive socialisation window, or just wanting their new pup to...

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Canine Behavioural Science

How To Use Your Dog's Distractions As Rewards

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Many dog owners become frustrated with how their dog focuses on distractions rather than their humans. Rather than thinking of the things that your dog wants to get to as distractions try thinking of them as potential REINFORCERS. For example, let’s say that you have trouble getting your dog to come when called around birds, because your dog loves...

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Canine Behavioural Science

What's A Reinforcer? Why Some Dogs Won't Work For Praise

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

Many people struggle with positive reinforcement training because they don’t yet understand what a “reinforcer” really is. The golden rule of dog training is “all behaviour that gets reinforced gets repeated.” Simply put, a reinforcer is anything that a dog will work to get – not just something that they like.

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Reactive Dogs

Why You Shouldn't Lure A Fearful Dog With Treats

Madeleine Ross, CPDT-KA, November 8 2018

A common mistake that many owners make when trying to help a fearful dog become more comfortable around something they’re scared of is attempting to lure the dog closer to the scary thing with a treat. Though the thinking behind this strategy is well meaning, it can often backfire and increase the dog’s fear.

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