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The Dog Training Muzzle

Posted on July 16, 2012 at 6:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Society looks at a muzzle like a bad thing..

It looks bad, makes them look mean, something is wrong with the dog if he is wearing a muzzle, etc…

The truth is that every dog can benefit from learning to comfortably wear a muzzle.. The responsible thing to do is to have your dog used to wearing a muzzle, especially if there is any chance your dog may bite someone or another animal. It is in the owner’s best interest, as well as the dogs to wear a muzzle when it is needed.

We like to call the muzzle “Party Hat” because that is what it is. The dog can party with family members, etc.. when normally they would have to be locked in the room or worse, the owner just lets them run free and they end up biting someone.

The muzzle should be looked at like a good thing vs. a bad thing. It has been an ongoing project, to get the dogs at the shelter used to wearing a muzzle, as this can be one of the most beneficial things for them.

Below are two videos, one with Clancy and one with Tink. They are both at opposite sides of the spectrum right now. Clancy just started, so I am only really introducing it to him in this video. Tink has pretty much completed with the muzzle training, as you can see in the video. If done correctly, they will enjoy the muzzle, rather than get fearful when they see it. As you can see in Tinks video, she is wagging her tail throughout with great body language, as she knows she will get lots treats and praise when she has her “Party Hat” on.

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Save our Pitbills!!

Posted on July 10, 2012 at 6:05 PM Comments comments (2)

“Pitbulls jaws lock and they are unable to open it.”

“Pitbulls are always aggressive and will attack people and kids”

“Pitbulls are the most dangerous dogs there are.”

“The list goes on and on…”

These are typical stereotypes that people have about the breed:

Let’s start by debunking the typical stereotypes:

1.The Pitbulls jaw does not lock up to where they cannot even open it. 1.The truth is that they just have strong jaws and can hang on to things better than other breeds. There are studies that show other breeds like the Rottweiler have stronger jaws than Pitbulls.

2.Pitbulls are not always aggressive towards people and children. 1.The truth is the breed originally was breed for quite the opposite. Most people know that Pitbulls were originally bred for fighting other dogs. What they don’t know is that they had to be able to let the other dogs owner (a complete stranger) handle and wash the dog.

2.If they were always aggressive, do you think this would happen? In fact they are very friendly, and are not aggressive towards people.

 

 

i. This does not mean however, that every Pitbull is not aggressive. Unfortunately, irresponsible breeders have messed up some of the lines, so there are possibilities that you will get an aggressive Pitbull. But that is the case for any breed, especially if it comes from a puppy mill, pet store, mall, or anywhere else where they are breeding for looks and money and not temperament.

ii. In fact, as a dog trainer, the dogs we see come in with aggressive behavior are most likely not Pitbulls. Believe it or not, we are more likely to see a Lab come in for aggressive behavior then we are a Pitbull.

Over the years, the breed unfortunately has been pegged with stereotypes and a lot of irresponsible dog owners have acquired the breed for the wrong purpose. As a trainer, I have two of my own and both of them love people very much. I would trust them with people more than I would trust my cats with people. J Pitbulls when owned by responsible owners, that give them lots of play and training, are one of the most loving and loyal companions!! Now, just because I am standing behind them and stating they are not aggressive, this doesn’t mean that problems can not arise. Just like with any other dog you get, it is a responsibility to own a Pitbull. If you are looking to get your own, you should do some research. They are a very strong breed and they are a terrier. This means just like all dogs, they will require lots of play. If you do not let them release their restless spirit, they can redirect that energy to something else, like chasing squirrels or other small animals outside. I do not suggest for owners to purchase a Pitbull if they are not fully aware of what they are getting in to and are not ready for the responsibility. The shelter systems already are overwhelmed with Pitbulls and it is not fair to them that their owner wasn’t responsible and let them go up for adoption. Most of those dogs in the shelter system are there probably because the owner saw a cute puppy without doing any research and once the dog got older and stronger, they were not ready for the responsibility. Not knowing what to do, they just give up and bring the dog to the shelter. As an avid animal lover, dog trainer and a volunteer at the humane society, I am willing to help people make decisions on what type of breed will fit for them before they get in over their head.

If you are every thinking about purchasing a Pitbull and would like to know more about the breed or anything else, feel free to contact me.

Help change the Stereotype and save Pitbulls from filling up our shelter systems!!!

 

The Power of Tug with your Dog

Posted on June 29, 2012 at 6:20 PM Comments comments (1)

Is Tug a bad game to play with my dog?

Will tug make my dog more aggressive?

 

These are typical questions that people ask and are thinking.

The truth is, if tug is played the right way...no it is not a bad game to play with your dog and it will not make them more aggressive.

-Now this doesn't mean start playing tug with a sweatshirt or a pair of jeans as this may cause your dog to tug at your clothes.

The benefits of tug are listed below, but are not limited to:

-Great for relationship building, showing yourself as a confident leader with your little buddy, because you can start the game, control the game and end the game.

-Great for teaching the dog self-control by making them doing some light obedience during the game.

-Can teach the dog an "out" command, which can become very useful in daily life.

-Calm their restless spirit, especially for the prey type breeds like terriers, etc. If you play tug a couple of times a day with your little buddy, they are less likely to shred apart stuff in the home that you do not want them to.

Look at the videos below, one with Tink and one with Ness. They are at two different stages in the training.

Tink: When we started, she was a maniac with the tug, once the game started started she was not giving up.. well with patience, I was able to teach her a soft "out" command, which she will release while in mid play with the tug.. then she will give me complete attention and do commands that she understands already with a soft voice.(We never raise our voice with the dogs, it's not needed and is not respectful) Then I tought her an "OK" command as well, which means she can engage again. This will help when she finds a home, the owner will be able to tell her what she can engage with and what she can not engage with.

Ness: His owner specified NOT to play tug with him when he had to give him up for adoption. When I first to played with Ness, I learned why the previous owner stated this immediately. However over time, he has started to calm down. I utilize 2 tugs so that I can teach him an "Out" command, which he is starting to learn, but we are building on it. He has already learned the "ok" engage command and he is able to control himself during the game to do "sits" and "downs" which when we started was not an option.

Please look at the videos so you can see the progress of these two. I will keep you updated on both of them.

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