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Some tips for your new pup

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

Its hard not to want to give your cute puppy whatever he wants and do whatever he wants to do but it is so critical that we use this time wisely. Puppies grow up so fast and what they learn as puppies (good or bad) will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Consistency and diligence is the key. Dont let the dog get away with anything. Every time you let let your guard down you will have to start all over again. Don’t wait to teach them manners. Start right away with the basic commands, “sit”, “stay”, “come”, “down”, “out”, “leave it” and of course “potty”! Your puppy is smart enough to learn these commands as early as 8 weeks of age.

Your puppy needs to be socialized as much as possible. Once he has had his puppy shots make sure to take him with you whenever you can. Home Depot and Petsmart are great places to go. Let people touch your puppy and if there are other dogs go make an introduction. The more socialized your puppy is the more confidence he will have which makes for a happier, smarter, easier to train dog.

Make sure you are feeding your puppy a good dog food. Do your research, some breeds seem to respond better to one dog food over another. If you purchased from a reputable breeder they will probably have some good advice as to what to feed them.

Coming back to consistency, make sure you feed your puppy at the same time every day. Try to keep a routine that you follow as close as you can. This will help with many behavioral probems and will be very helpful with potty training.

Don’t forget to have fun!

My Brothers New Puppy

Monday, May 4th, 2009

My brother has been looking for a puppy for a long time. He asked me for my help which of course I was glad to give. We did a lot of research and eventually decided on a Golden Retriever. I had some good breeder contacts for Goldens and we looked at multiple litters. On Saturday we found the perfect puppy. Or should I say she found us.

The breeder knew what we were looking for and thought she had the perfect candidate. We did find the perfect puppy but it wasnt the one she had in mind. It was unbelievable how this puppy seemed to connect with us right away. Her eyes wouldnt leave ours as if she was trying to will us with everthing she had to take her home. If my brother didnt take her I dont think I could have resisted.

My brother has 8 kids and this is their first dog. As you can imagine, his wife wasnt sure she was ready to add the extra work of a puppy. They just got a bigger property and have animal lovers that just needed a dog. Puppies can definitely be a lot of work and I wanted to make sure they were prepared for what they should expect. I think they were prepared as you can be and my sister in law still gave the green light. Her kids are lucky to have a mom that loves them so much to take on the extra work. I know she will not regret it. The puppy really is perfect.

It has been so fun for me helping pick out the right puppy, giving puppy and dog training tips, helping them have all the tools necessary to make this a positive experience for the puppy and my brothers family. Of course we have already covered potty training and crate training. I am meeting with all the family tonight to go over basic obedience and how to stay consistent with commands, praise and discipline. I really am enjoying this and am as excited to see that puppy tonight as I am my nieces and nephews.

Tips for Potty Training Your Puppy

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

This is a topic that I get so many questions on so I thought I could give a few more tips here. Of course I go in much more detail in my book and videos here.

The best thing to remember is that your puppy can “hold it” for about 1 hour for every month of age. So your new puppy (usually 8 weeks) should be able to go about 2 hours before needing a potty break. This is good information to know so you can plan accordingly.

You want to set your new puppy up for success. With the right planning and some diligence on your part you can have the puppy potty trained without it ever having an accident in your home. Of course there may be accidents that you just cant catch. Make sure to clean the area with white vinegar solution or a good pet stain cleaner. If there is a scent left over the puppy will want to use the spot again.

I know pee or poop on your beautiful carpet can be very frustrating but please remember that the puppy will always learn and respond so much better to praise than discipline. If you didnt catch the puppy in the act than there is nothing you can do…the little stinker wont know what he did wrong and any discipline will just confuse the heck out of him. If you do catch him in the act give him a frm “no” or “ah! ah!” or whatever correction you like to use..and scoop him up, take him outside to finish releaving himself. If he does finish outside praise like crazy!

Dont give up, stay consistent and this phase will be over soon. You are well on your way to a wonderfully trained dog. If only kids were this easy!