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Is your dog home alone? Does your pup get excited as soon as you open the door? She probably does because she misses you; she’s lonely and wants companionship as well as physical and mental stimulation. Doggy day care may be your answer.

Doggie day cares work the same as human day cares, with a drop off and pickup time, with a safe and healthy interaction with other dogs and people in between. You should tour the facility checking for health conditions and how their staff interacts with the dogs, what type of training do the staff members get etc..

Other considerations; is there an outdoor play area, is it fenced, does the facility seem overcrowded? Are the dogs required to follow basic obedience commands, will the staff feed the dogs and when, will they allow you to brig your own food if needed, does the facility have its own veterinarian if needed in an emergency? Make a list of your own concerns and questions.

Costs of doggy day cares are typically $8.00 to $15.00 a day, but can be much higher based on location, facility, and the level of care given. In home daycares are usually cheaper, but provide only the most basic level of care and attention.

Day care centers may also be combined with boarding kennels, training kennels, and grooming spas. But no matter how basic or how excessive, they all require proof of current vaccinations, and good health, with some requiring a Veterinarians examination.

However, day care may not be appropriate for every dog, especially those that are aggressive or over protective. They must be able to interact with the other dogs and the staff of the facility. Most daycare providers are listed in your local phone book and newspaper classifieds, and most local dog clubs and associations and their members can give you a personal recommendation.

Lastly, after placing your dog in a day care environment, take not of his or her behavior. Is it better, worse, or unchanged? Better or unchanged are ok, but worse is a red flag. Bad habits can be learned quickly, and an unhappy experience can leave your dog depressed, more aggressive, or just plain miserable. Don’t hesitate to stop or change day cares when behaviors change.

About The Author

Randy Jones and his partner Brent Jones have been in the pet industry for a long time. Recently they formed On the site, customers can shop for the latest dog collars, dog clothes, pet supplies and more. Check them out at

posted by The Mad Blogger at 1:39 PM


Dental care for your dog can get lost in the shuffle of daily life. Even if you really love your dog and give your dog great dog care, it’s easy to slip up on dental care for your dog.

When was the last time you checked your dog’s teeth?

I know—the inside of the mouth isn’t the cutest part of your dog. But it can tell you a lot about your dog’s health.

Contrary to what non-dog people may think, not all dogs have bad breath. Bad doggy breath, in fact, can be a sign of disease.

To look for signs of disease, check the color of your dog’s teeth. White is really good. Brown is really bad. You’re aiming for at least somewhere in between.

Check for broken teeth, pus or bleeding gums, and look for any unusual growths. If you see anything that looks unhealthy, please take your dog to the vet.

If you’re in a metropolitan area, you may be able to find a vet who specializes in dental care. Check the American Veterinary Dental College’s site to see a list of their graduates.

You can find dog dental care products at nearly any pet store. The easiest way to keep your dog’s teeth healthy is with dental chews. The more your dog chews, on something meant for chewing (not on something like your furniture), the better dog dental health your dog will have.

There’s been some debate about the safety of the well-known chews, Greenies. I’ve never given my dog Greenies, but some dog parents say they’re great. Be aware, though, that according to a CNN investigation, since 2003, 40 dogs have had to have pieces of Greenies surgically removed, and 13 of those dogs died. Of course, that’s a small number given that over 750 million Greenies have been sold since 1998.

Better than chews are rinses or pastes that you put on your dog’s teeth and gums. Even better than that is brushing your dog’s teeth. You can find tooth brushes especially for dog dental care at any pet supply store.

If you take just a little time to get the right supplies and just a bit of time to use them, you’ll be doing your dog AND you a big favor. Your dog will be healthier (and have fewer expensive problems) when you get dental care for your dog.

About The Author

Want to be a great dog care giver? Andrea Rains Waggener, author of Dog Parenting—How To Have An Outrageously Happy Canine, has created the ultimate dog parenting support center. To join FREE, click here:

posted by The Mad Blogger at 1:38 PM


Bringing home a new puppy is an exciting experience! The puppy is excited, you are excited, but what about your older dog? You remember, the one who has been an only dog for years. It can be done and fairly effortlessly at that.

Dogs, for all their domesticity, still have a pack mentality. You, of course, are the alpha, or head dog. Your older dog will be the beta, or second in command. When bringing a new dog into the pack, your established dog may feel threatened. Be mindful of this. While you do want your newest addition to feel loved and welcomed, you also want your older dog to know that it is still loved very much and its position in the household is secure. There are a variety of things you may do to make this transition from a one dog to a two dog home go smoothly.

Go slowly! This is a brand new place for your puppy and a new situation for your older dog. Don’t rush them into any kind of relationship. Let the puppy explore. Allow them to get acquainted. I would advise here, to stay in close proximity when the dogs are just getting to know each other. Sometimes fights do break out and you won’t want either dog injured.

Spend quality time with each dog separately. This allows you to bond with your puppy and also shows your older dog that it is still an important part of your life. A caution here, don’t spend all of your time with them in separate situations. This may breed jealousy and ill will between dogs.

Play is important. Play with your dogs separately and also have playtime together. Make sure they have plenty of toys and chew toys. Once they begin having fun, it won’t be long until they are playing together and you are the one left out!

Reward good behavior. As mentioned, this is a new situation for both dogs. Reward them with playtime or treats so that they know that they are moving in the right direction.

This all may sound like a lot of work, but it truly isn’t. Once your dogs develop a relationship, your diligence will be awarded with twice the love!

About The Author

Nikola lives and writes in Oklahoma. She enjoys reading, scrapbooking and spending time with her two dogs. Nikola is an author on www.Writing.Com which is a site for Writers.

posted by The Mad Blogger at 1:36 PM


Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Clicker Training Introduction

Clicker training with dogs is fairly well known, but all animals can be trained with the “Clicker” method, cats, birds, horses and most others.

Dogs soon learn that when they perform a particular action it gets them a reward immediately after hearing the click, this is a very positive way of training, which dogs react well to. They soon start performing the action in the hope of getting another treat. The training sessions are totally pleasurable for the dog so they learn very quickly, once they have realised that they get a reward.

The difference between clicker training and other reward based training methods is that with the clicker training method the dog immediately understands which action has resulted in his receiving the reward. As he hears the click, as the correct action is performed, he immediately receives the reward.

The clicker is a more positive way of training than the spoken word simply because the dog will very rarely hear the “click” at any other time, except when training, but he hears spoken words all the time, most of which he does not understand.

You need to exercise a little patience when you first start, but most dogs will start to understand after hearing the click 5 or 6 times. You will know when your dog understands, as he will look up at you when you click.

Start by going somewhere quiet so your dog is not distracted by other noises. Arm your-self with some really tasty treats, that are not usually given to him, like very small pieces of roast beef or chicken, cheese, liver or hot dogs. Use your clicker and give him a treat, do this say, three times so that he associates the click with a treat. Should your dog be of a very nervous disposition, and is frightened of the click then muffle it by putting it in your pocket to begin with. You can start by playing games. Have his toys with you. Throw one and as he picks it up “click” and reward.

Once you know that your dog understands you can start using words to go with the action. After a short while you can introduce the words “ fetch” and “give” as he performs these tasks, click and reward.

You have to wait for the action you want.
Mark that behaviour by clicking.
Reward the behaviour.
He then quickly learns what is required of him.

You can also teach him to react to hand signals, in the same way. Once you get to this stage you only reward him when he has responded to your commands, you no longer reward him when he performs the action without the command.

To teach “sit” or “down” you have to use the toy as a lure to encourage your dog into the correct position, as soon as he “ sits” or goes” down” click and reward. Do not use any verbal instructions until you are confident that your dog will perform what you want him to. Only then do you use a command, and when you believe that he will perform to command then you can stop using the toy, or treat, as a lure.

Teaching him to stay is an important lesson to learn. Start by putting him in a sit or down, which ever is your dog’s favourite position. Tell him to stay but don’t move, if he holds it for a few seconds click and reward. Do this a couple of times before you try taking just one step away, if he holds it click and reward. If he moves just return to him and put him back into position. Keep practicing until you can walk unlimited distances away, but don’t try to go too far too quickly.

Teach your dog the difference between “stay” and “wait”. Stay is when you are going away from him and will return to him. Wait is for a variety of occasions;

1) You don’t want him to jump out of the car until you say.
2) he may be ahead of you and you want him to wait till you catch up with him.
3) he may be about to cross the road without you, and you want to check it first.

There are countless needs for the command to wait.

If your dog is not good on recall then start using the clicker to get him to respond to his name, he will soon learn that he gets a reward when he responds. No dog will come to call if you can’t get his attention when you call his name. So when he looks up at you click and reward. The next step would be to call him when he is a distance away, somewhere quiet where there are no distractions, click when he looks up, call him click again and reward. You will soon be able to have good recall when you are out.

The use of the clicker is generally only used while the dog is learning the cue, as in the word or hand signal, once it is understood then you no longer need to click, but the occasional reward is always worthwhile.

Clicker trainers prefer not to reprimand their dogs as they prefer to build a strong relationship with their dogs and they don’t believe they can do this if they are punishing wrong behaviour. They also think that they get more enthusiasm from their dog if it is receiving no punishment. It is believed that any bad habits will slowly stop, as they get no reward. If the bad habit persists then the habit needs to be studied to understand why it exists, remove the cause and the bad habit should go away.

About The Author

Valerie Dancer

I was bought up in a family which always had dogs. My Mother trained her dog to county standard, using "old fashion" methods, and did a good job. Over the years I have come to prefer kinder ways of training, only giving praize for good behaviour, and ignoring the bad behabiour. I have found it works very well. visit

posted by The Mad Blogger at 7:56 PM


Previous Posts
Things You Need To Know When Considering A Doggy Day Care
Dental Care For Your Dog—Sink Your Teeth Into It
Puppy Care: Introducing Puppy to an Older Dog
Clicker Training Introduction
Dog Potty Training
The Best Dog Training Books
Dog Training The Gentle Way – The Sit Command
Dealing With House Training Your Dog
Dog Training Techniques Revealed
Dog Training: "Hot Tips for the Bedroom"

September 2006
October 2006

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