Treats are the all-important training assistant, teeth cleaner, time occupier, and rewarding item that all dog owners should keep on hand. Just like with food, you want to find treats that do not contain artificial additives and by-products. Small bits of cooked meats from your refrigerator make the perfect additive free treats.
Many dog owners don’t realize that a treat can be the size of a corn kernel. It only has to smell and taste great for it to be valuable to them. Their incredible noses know long before you would ever realize that something good is in your hand or pouch.
If your dog is not respectfully taking the treat from your hand then you need to teach them proper treat taking etiquette. For more on etiquette, types of treats, when and how to treat click the link below.
Microchip identification or the standard ID tags are the two types of identification most widely used throughout the world. An ID tag can be made of either plastic or metal and come in a variety of shapes and sizes with a dog’s name and contact information cut into it.
Both contain a dog’s name and an owner’s contact information, such as name, telephone number and address.
Cleaners for scrubbing up dog bombs are beneficial in hiding the past accident area so that your puppy cannot identify where he had previously relieved himself. Pet specific cleaners are available that do much more than carpet cleaners, because they attack the ingredients of dog poop and pee.
The main point is to erase all evidence that urine or fecal matter had been deposited in the affected area. Dogs are creatures of habit and return to the same general area where they previously urinated or defecated. Anytime that you are cleaning up a mess in an off-limits spot, you must erase all traces of the mess so that your puppy cannot locate it. Enzyme cleaners and dog specific cleaners help erase the crime scene.
How to clean house-soiling accidents is something that all dog owners should learn.
Puppy Proof Sprays
Sprays for items that you do not want your puppy chewing, leave a bitter taste that usually repels dogs. Shake and spray on table legs, sofas and anything that your puppy has access and you need to protect.
The desired goals for puppy owners are to puppy proof their homes and foremost train puppies not to chew anything besides their toys.
Collar Types and Uses
The iconic dog collar with identity tag hanging beneath dogs’ head is imprinted into every humans mind. Collars are an item that all dog owners need to have and all dogs must adjust to wearing. Dogs quickly become accustomed to their collars and soon they feel that it is part of their bodies. Collars cover an extensive range of colors, adornment, usefulness, and material compositions. Collars are typically made from leather, nylon, metal, cotton, and in varying widths.
Depending upon the activity, size and type of dog, the collar can be changed to accommodate the event. Toy dogs such as a Papillon, Pomeranian or Poodle do not usually wear a heavy chain or hefty leather collar, where large, aggressive or strong dogs such as Mastiffs, Cane Corsos, or Great Pyrenees might require one.
In the show ring, out hiking, during training, at the dog park or house, choosing the correct collar for the event and location is a skill that all dog owners should possess. Rewards based trainers try to avoid collars that choke or harm dogs, because rewards based training avoids physical punishment. Of course, in extreme cases of rehabilitating negative behaviors they are sometimes employed.
The collar should fit over your dog’s head and fit snuggly on the neck, but leaving enough room to slip two fingers between your dog’s neck and the collar. If it is to tight the collar restricts breathing, too loose and it allows for escaping or snagging on objects. Standard collars are usually a better idea for large fully trained adult dogs, while harnesses allow more control over difficult and small dogs.
“What is your Collar IQ?”
Common Types of dog collars
Choke Chain / Chain-slip
Halter collars are also named head collars. They wrap around the head and muzzle of the dog and help to counteract pulling and assist with steering. The overall design gives owners more control of their dogs’ movements.
Larger dogs can use a standard halter that connects to both the shoulder and chest using dual leads. Variances on this design are available to fit almost any breed except some flat-nosed breeds such as Pugs or Bulldogs.
The halter is a valuable friend for dog owners having a difficult time with leash training and controlling their dogs. Halters are recommended
in lieu of choke and prong collars.
Harness collars fit around the neck and shoulders behind the front legs. Harnesses are recommended for all dogs with throat, trachea or respiratory issues.
Harness collars do not apply pressure on dogs’ throats therefore avoid damaging the trachea or constricting breathing. Harnesses are ideal for toy and small dogs because they reduce the risk of neck injury.
Pro – When out walking, they take pressure from dogs’ necks and disperse it through the torso. Benefits jumping or lunging dogs by not choking them, and harnesses are less likely to separate from a dogs body under heavy pressure.
Con – Some dogs do not appreciate the fit of harnesses finding them uncomfortable to wear. Back clip harnesses provide less control than front clip. Be sure the harness has a place to attach an ID tag.
Large active dogs can adorn specially designed hiking harnesses that are equipped with the storage ability to haul the dogs own food and water, or that flask of warmness needed for cold nights. J
Breakaway collars are designed to prevent choking.
Pro – If a dog becomes entangled with another object and the collar snags, the collar will breakaway allowing the dog to remain uninjured. This ability comes from the specially designed breakaway clasp.
Con – The drawback is that the collars do not withstand heavy tugs and if the collar disengages, the dog wearing it is without its identity tag.
Buckle collars are versatile, functional, and timeless in design and are referred to as standard collars.
Pro – They come in many different materials and ornamentation and of course provide a place to hang pooches’ identity tags. These are best for dogs that are obedience and leash trained, or just meandering around the house.
Con – While great for identity tag and fashion statements, they are not ideal for training purposes and can injure toy and small dogs.
Nylon Slip collars instantly tighten when pulled thus gaining the dogs attention and allowing the owner to move the dog where they choose. These collars are also used during obedience competitions and show competitions.
Con – Best used for training purposes only, some do not have a place to hang an identity tag. They cannot be left on dogs when unattended.
Quick Release collars differ from buckle because instead of a buckle and belt holes, a simple plastic fastener links it together allowing for a quick pinch of the plastic clip to release the collar. This allows for easy removal and the quick changing of collars.
Con – They are not ideal for training purposes and can injure toy and small dogs.
Choke -chain / Chain-slip collars are used during training and allow the trainer greater control of a dog.
Con – when jerked they can cause damage to a dogs neck. This type of collar should not remain on a dog after training sessions because they can easily become snagged and choke the dog.
Prong collars are metal training collars with prongs on the inside loop next to the dogs fur. The prongs are not sharp, and when tightened place even pressure on a dogs neck, and are known as pinch collars.
They are often used when training large dogs that are difficult to control.
Con – Again, these should only be used during training sessions, and not remain on dogs afterward. They appear more aggressive than they actually are; the prongs are not sharp enough to penetrate skin, however they still inflict discomfort.
Martingale collars are used in conformation and for dogs that have heads smaller than their necks, but can be used on any breed. They slip over a dog’s head and tighten when tension is applied from the lead.
Pro – These collars do not tighten all of the way as a choke collar does because only one section is capable to be tightened when the lead is pulled.
Con – They cannot be left on a dog after training sessions or walks, so a different collar needs to be placed on your dog.
Electronic collars are used for with electric fences, hunting, and for controlling barking.
Pro – Helpful for training and quickly impressing upon dogs what behavior you desire from them.
Con – These types of collars should not be left on dogs for long durations, and should only be used during training sessions.
Dog Show collars worn during confirmation are martingale; slip, nylon choke, and combination slip lead collars. These thin collars are preferred for show dogs because they are easily slipped on and off dogs.
The design is understated so that they do not alter the neckline or beauty of the dogs and additionally provide greater control to the trainer.
Con – They all inflict discomfort when tightened upon a dog’s neck.
It is common knowledge that leather lasts many years, is strong, and looks lovely. Most leather goods age into greater beauty because wear displayed on leather is part of its attractive quality. Leather collars come in different thicknesses, widths, grades, and finishes.
Top grain leather collars are stronger, more durable, and supple than other leathers. Oil tanned leather is another top option due to the process adding flexibility and durability to the leather.
Nylon collars come in a variety of colors, widths, and either single or doubly ply thickness. Strong, durable, and long lasting, they are also available with reflective materials made to illuminate when lights from vehicles shine on them. They do not withstand chewing well.
Made with nylon cord that is wrapped in fabric or rolled leather. It has outstanding strength, which is why it is often used in retractable leads.
Cotton web collars are lightweight, inexpensive, and geared towards puppies being trained. They have a shorter lifespan and easily show wear.
Choosing a Collar
Choose a collar that is appropriate for your dog’s size and weight, by matching the size and weight of the construction materials to your dog. Additional collar choosing factors are budget, functionality, collar width and thickness. You do not want your little lap dogs neck pulled to the ground by some overly ornate, heavy wide collar.
Large and strong dogs require durable heavy-duty construction to withstand their size and strength. Wider collars place less pressure on a dog’s neck making them more comfortable and less restricted.
The correct fit is important for safety. Dog collars should fit snug enough so that the dog cannot easily slip out of the collar. Collars usually adjust to an additional two inches (5cm) from the stated size, for example, a sixteen-inch (40.6cm) collar expands to eighteen inches (45.7cm).
When measuring for a collar owners need to take into consideration their dogs type of coat. Dogs with summer and winter coats will need collar room to adjust to their coats changes.
To find your dog’s collar size, use a flexible tape measure around the high part of your dog’s neck. Collars should be worn high on the neck. If your dog is between sizes, choose the larger size instead of the smaller. If you have a puppy, take advantage when ordering and purchase an additional collar that is one size up, so that it is ready when your puppy grows out of his initial collar.
Types of Leashes
Leashes come in many different styles and materials including leather, nylon, metal, cloth, and reflective. When choosing a leash consider its application, the size of your dog, and the settings that you will be using it.
Your basic seven leashes for training and everyday use are standard, check chord; slip lead, retractable, martingale, traffic lead, and chain. Training leashes are slip leads, martingales, check chords, and traffic leads. Rewards based trainers avoid leashes such as
slip lead that can choke dogs and injure them.
There are many American state laws that require dogs to be leashed in specific areas, consult your local municipality regarding the laws in the country where you reside.
Standard leashes are those that have a snap to secure it onto a dog’s collar. Typically, they are available in 4’ – 6’ (1.2 – 2m) lengths. These leashes are the standard everyday walking leash for taking your dog around the block or down to the local coffee shop. These shorter and stouter leashes offer better control of your dog.
Slip leads are usually used during training because they offer immediate corrections to be made with a slight pull, or if the dog is pulling, they immediately feel the constriction. Slip leads immediately loosen as soon as the tension is released. Because it is an all in one leash and collar, the need for a collar is eliminated. They are easy to put on and take off.
Scenarios where these are useful are for potentially stressful trips to a location where other dogs will be present, such as the groomer or veterinarian and you need full control of your not-yet-fully-trained dog, and competitions.
Check chords are long leads ranging from twenty feet (6m) to any length you desire. These useful leashes are perfect training helpers for teaching obedience commands such as come, retrieving, tracking, fieldwork, and many other sports.
They offer your dog plenty of room to roam around freely, come in a variety of colors, are lightweight, less likely to tangle and easier on your hands than rope.
Retractable leashes are best used once your dog is leash trained and relatively obedient. Otherwise, you will end up with little control of a dog that might be pulling, lunging, or jumping all of which can have negative outcomes.
They are good for low distraction and low stress scenarios where your dog can be allowed extra room to roam safely. They also offer a good leash for transitioning into off-leash work.
Keep in mind that hunting dogs might be too gamey for a retractable. When they spot game, they tend to pursue without thought of being tethered and if your dog is ten feet out, takes off running you are left with little control and it becomes a test of strength. This type of situation can end with injuries such as shoulder, hand, or chord burns from exposed skin rubbed raw.
Martingale leads are similar to slip leads but have a limited tightening range. If you have a strong pulling dog that isn’t fazed by being choked, then this is a better option than a slip leash. Because it is an all in one leash and collar, the need for a collar is eliminated.
Traffic lead leashes are short leashes that offer you greater control of difficult to handle dogs or when you need tight control of a dog. The short leash cannot become tangled, thus adding safety. These short leads are also useful for service dogs in harness and in any situation where you need close control of your dog.
Traffic leads can be as short as six inches (15cm) and up to two feet (61cm) although you will see longer leads advertised. The longer they become the less control they offer.
Chain leashes are as the name states and made of metal. They are much more comfortable if they have a leather handle. They are heavy, bulky and if they are 100% metal, uncomfortable in hand. They require being attached to a solidly built collar. One benefit is for dogs that will not stop chewing on their leashes.
Reflective leashes provide additional safety to your nightly walks. After dusk, a reflective leash adds visibility from light sources such as car lights. Look for a leash that has reflective coating on both sides so that no matter the position a reflection from light can be seen by approaching drivers or pedestrians.
TIP – Collars are also made with reflective materials, having this type of collar and leash combination for your dog will add extra protection for the both of you when out walking under dim conditions. LED lit harnesses are available, and if you choose, there is nothing harmful about attaching an LED type light to your dog’s collar. All sorts of blinking and beam balls are for sale.
Le ash Materials
Leather leashes are more expensive than nylon, but normally hold up against chewing and are long lasting. Leather leashes are more comfortable in hand than many nylon leashes, and do provide slight stretching along with less likelihood of damage occurring to your hand.
Top grain leather leashes are stronger, more durable, and supple than other leathers. Oil tanned leather is another top option due to the process adding flexibility and durability to the leather.
Nylon (synthetic) leashes are less expensive than metal or leather, strong, light, washable, and hold up well in different climates. However, they do not withstand chewing well, do not stretch, and sometimes cause chaffing of hands.
Chain leashes are usually made from steel, are strong, prevent chewing, and provide control of dogs. They are much heavier than leather and nylon, and if a dog does chew on it their teeth can be damaged.
Shopping for your puppy is an enjoyable experience. Dog owners want their puppies to be comfortable and at first glance choosing a dog bed seems as simple as matching bed size to dog size. However, there are a few considerations to mull over before heading out to the doggie mega-store or online retailer. You should consider the location of the bed; your dog’s sleeping style and breed. Are you purchasing a travel bed, indoor sleeping bed, or outdoor bed?
“What do you mean by my dogs sleeping style?”
All animals strike their own poses during sleep, just think about humans and the many positions we sleep. To choose the correct sized bed, measure your dog in their favorite sleeping position. If you notice your dog often changes positions, then measure when they are their largest during sleep.
“How do I find my dog’s bed size?”
For each sleeping style, match the bed size to your dog’s sleeping dimensions.
Sprawled out sleepers usually cover the lengths of their beds, so measure the dogs full stretched out length from nose to back paws or stretched front to back paws. The bed should be wide enough for the torso and long enough to accommodate the stretched measurement. It is a good idea to add a couple of inches or centimeters to both measurements so that your dog has some positioning room.
Curled up sleepers will in most cases find small cozy beds a perfect fit. Measure your dog while they are in the curled sleeping position then add some extra room.
Upside down sleeping dogs often switch positions, but nonetheless they will need a bed long enough to support their spine while sleeping on their backs. Measure the dog from their head to tail, or head to hindquarters. Dogs are unlikely to care if their tails hang off the edge of the bed, so it is up to you to decide about tail or hindquarter measuring.
Active sleeping dogs that seem to dream of running in the park or chasing prey during sleep are often suited best to a flat type bed. Measure the torso and then add some extra room for the dog’s head and neck. This will accommodate dreaming jerks and ticks. It is a good idea to add a couple of inches or centimeters to both measurements so that your dog has some positioning room.
Common Bed Styles
Standard are flat, come in all shapes and sizes, and are basic resting bed for all breeds. Flat beds are great for sprawling and upside down sleeping dogs.
Nesting which are similar to standard, have raised edges and possibly a partial roof. Tiny and small dogs enjoy the comfort and security offered by this type of bed.
Orthopedic beds are often selected for elderly dogs to support their aching joints and are good for dogs healing from certain injuries.
Travel beds are usually smaller and can be folded or rolled up for ease of transport.
Bolster beds are similar in design to a human couch only in dog size and lay on the floor. They are partially raised on three sides with pillow type cushions and offer dogs a sense of security, comfort, and coziness. These are a favorite style for toy to medium sized dogs that enjoy or need comfort.
Donut Beds have a raised edge around the circumference and that edge is made of bolstering materials similar to pillows. Small dogs enjoy curling up in these types of beds and they rank high in popularity with dogs.
Snuggle beds are designed for small dogs and offer a den feeling that is perfect for burrowers such as Dachshunds and dogs that chill easy such as Whippets and Chihuahuas. This type of bed is cozy, warm and comfortable instilling safety into your sleeping dog. This type of bed comes in many options such as partially covered, sleeping bag style and tunnel.
Crate Pads are for use inside dog’s crates and come in numerous sizes, thicknesses and materials. A quality crate bed should be water and mold resistant, machine washable and durable.
Heated and Cooled beds which do as their names state are often selected to ease pain, or keep dogs warm or cool. During winter, dogs such as Whippets that chill easily might take a liking to a heated bed, while dogs such as Pugs that easily overheat can make use of a cool bed on a hot summer day. Elderly dogs can find relief from the aches and pains that come with age.
Outdoor, Tent, Round, and dog furniture are other styles of beds available for dogs. Some outdoor beds are raised in cot-like fashion or have weatherproof fabrics similar to patio furniture. Cots are usually chew resistant due to metal and canvas construction. Tent beds are similar to human tent canopies or tent style construction, and dog furniture is bedding in furniture styled construction.
Be assured that there is no shortage of bedding available for your treasured pooch to be warm, cozy, and secure.
All About Crates
Your puppy requires a well-constructed crate to call their home. The reason is that dogs enjoy the safety that dens provide while they are curled up for some alone time. Due to this fact, many owners splurge on their puppies and adult dogs’ crates. Contemporary life has provided dogs with many options.
Crates should be large enough to provide them the feeling of safety, but not big enough to encourage elimination inside of the crate. The crate should act as their go to safe spot, and they should enjoy time inside of their crates either reflecting upon the squirrel that got away, chewing on a stuffed chew-toy, or snoozing away. This is why crate training
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