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Archive for April, 2009

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!

They call it puppy love!

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

What is there not to love about a puppy. They are so stinking cute. I have had to show extreme will power not to walk away with many of the puppies I have gone to see. Its especially tempting when the puppies have been well cared for and socialized. The personalities are more developed and I know they are going to make great dogs. Training is so much easier with a puppy that has been handled and socialized well from birth.

I am always asked how young to start training my puppy. The answer is there are things that can be done from birth that will help in your dogs obedience. Handling the puppies when they are very young to get them used to human touch. Introducing verbal commands and praise at just weeks old. These are some of the reasons why it is so important to get a puppy from a reputable breeder.

You wont be able to start working with your new puppy until about 8 wks (avg age puppies are safe to leave momma). This is all critical time to start teaching a puppy what is expected to live in a human world. I love going and seeing a litter of puppies where it is obvious how much time and love has been given to those puppies. Dont be offended if they ask you a bunch of questions regarding your past with dogs and current living conditions. They ask because they do love these puppies so much and want to make sure they are going to good home.

“Marley and Me”

Monday, April 6th, 2009

So, I never made it into the theaters to watch “Marley and Me” so I was excited when it came out on DVD this week. Its always exciting to me when there was a movie that I wanted to see but for whatever reason was not able to make it while it was in the theaters. I love movies so that doesnt happen that often.

It was a great family movie as it was done very clean. It was a great story and stayed pretty true to the book. I think that if you had never read the book before Marley would have come across as not that bad of a dog. One of the hardest things to do in a movie is good character development in the short time frame…I guess thats true even if the character is a dog.

The dog trainer in the movie was horrible. That was by far my least favorite scene. I think the producers owed Kathleen Turner a favor or something. luckily it was a short scene with the intent to show Marley was a tough dog to train. I guess it managed to make that point, but come on? Anyone else would have been better.

Im curious to see what effect the book and movie have on the Lab population. I know after movies like 101 dalmations, the dalmation population boomed. Labs are already at the top of the popularity list. Maybe the movie will have an adverse effect. It really doesnt matter, but the fact is the Labrador Retriever is a great breed and is the most popular for a good reason. The key as always is good training and socializing.