Friday, December 7, 2012

Dog Toys and Rules that Go With Them

Too Much Access and Too Many Toys?

People seem to understand that a child that is given everything, never learning to earn, and never learning to respect what they have will grow into a needy and selfish child with very little manners.

This also happens with dogs.

Many homes that I visit have a basket full of toys available to their dog at all times, yet the dog is still eating their carpet, furniture, shoes, and house.  People offer toys with hopes the dog will choose to chew on the toys, in lieu of the couch.

A dog does not automatically understand that your stuffed couch is off-limits, and the stuffed duck is a toy. Dogs need to learn what is ok to chew and what is not ok to chew. All dogs are perfectly capable of understanding this when taught with no confusion.

A dog should be offered a toy, for displaying good behavior, like a child is rewarded a sticker on their chart for completing chores. One sticker, not a trip to Disneyland, everyday.

A living room filled with toys for a dog to play constantly, only promotes a dog that must be constantly entertained. Our goal is to create a calm a balanced dog. 

Spoiling your dog and indulging your dog in activity and affection in every moment, creates a dog that will not sit idle for you when necessary.

If your dog is not behaving the way you want him to...try to look closer to see if you raised your dog to be that way. Ouch.

Responsible parenting is important for K9 children too!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Why does my dog pull and bark on leash?

Barking and Pulling on the Leash

The barking and pulling are symptoms. A prong, shock, or control collar are all band aids. Even the gentle leader halter does not solve your problem long term.

Just like an exterior sore on our arm, may indicate an interior problem. A band aid only masks the true issue, and the illness will grow until correctly cured.

Same with your dog.

It seems like a lot to handle, but try to look at all the little things is what causes the big reactions.

Learning to walk a dog properly on a leash is not hard to physically do, but it very demanding emotionally.....because you can not be emotional for this to work! Please read our leash walking blogs. Pulling ahead of you and barking are all behaviors that are disrespectful of you, rather than reactions to their surroundings. 

Chewing at the pillows on your couch is disrespectful behavior for your dog  to have in your home. Rather than putting the pillows out of reach, teach your dog he is not allowed to touch the pillows. By understanding boundaries, your dog will learn your expectations, creating him to be more respectful in the house.

It is a battle of establishing boundaries and wrestling with your own emotions of feeling guilty for giving boundaries. Dogs don't think of boundaries as you being mean, but view your guidance as displaying signs of leadership.

A dog will love many people, but only follow a leader.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Put One Foot in Front of the Other

Educating My Dog

One Step In Front Of the Other.........

Try to remember this song from Santa Claus is coming to town,
"Put one step in front of the other, and soon you'll be walking out the door......

Training a dog is a process, to be taken one step at a time, moving forward with success, and meant to be an enjoyable process.

Many times people get frustrated in training their dogs because they have expectations beyond their dogs' trained ability. They expect the puppy in preschool to be performing at middle school level....

Or.....more commonly, a dog owner excuses bad behavior as acceptable puppy behavior. Excuses are easier than actually following through on the training. There is a clear difference between puppy behavior; needing to chew, and bad puppy behavior: chewing the couch and your shoes.

A young dog is capable to understand your rules and expectations easily, when your communication is clear.  If you have had a California Dog University Dog Behavior Therapist in your home to assist with your dog, then you are a witness to the dog behaving different with us and understand the potential for a calm and well behaved dog to share your home with. 

Our job is to help you achieve your desired results.  Rather than teaching your dog a lot of people talk, we focus on instructing you in dog language. It is easier and quicker to get results from your dog when you understand the language.

Join us each Saturday for a one hour group session to get a sample of California Dog University. Schedule a in-home training session....and let us show you our WOW!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Front Door Training for Dogs Made Easy!

The Prize is Behind Door #1

Training a dog at the front door is so simple once you realize the value of what you are offering.

Is your dog bolting out the door, jumping on guests, acting wild and crazy as you are trying to take him out for a walk?

If you have attended any of our classes and in home training, you know we would say... why is the dog at the door to begin with.... if he can't behave?  I have kids and if they whined the whole ride (or even partial) on the way to Disneyland....they knew they would not be entering those pearly gates!

To have a successful walk with your dog, you need to start with a calm dog. A calm dog is not panting, drooling, scratching, jumping, etc.  A calm dog is looking like he is bored. 

Sound impossible? It's not. ALL dogs can achieve this calmness. Recollect a time when you have seen your dog totally relaxed at some moment in it's life. Now, you just have to learn how to have this happen more often! You control the volume.... just keep reading with us....

For this post, we are going to focus on the door, and being calm at the door. Imagine the door as a million bucks to your dog. It is only offered, or opens, only when he remains calm. It is taken away, or closed, as he shows signs of excitement. 

Don't go too quickly. This is where everyone messes up. Touching the door knob may create the dog's change in behavior. If he can't be calm with you touching the handle, he absolutely can not be calm with the door open. 

You should never pay out the paycheck (or reward) if the dog did not perform the work.  For every time your dog is calm you can open the door. If your dog can not be calm, walk away from the door. Game over, try again later.

Dogs are simple, and respond and react simply for emotional reasons that have been you.

Come train with us! 951-834-5720

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Easy Training for your Dog

Stop! Take Your Hands Off The Dog!

There are some basic rules that can help any person train any dog. I always tell my clients 2 rules.  Number one....At all times in your dogs' life, you are either training the dog, or the dog is training you!
Number two.... Any time you pet your dog, you are rewarding the behavior the dog is doing at that exact moment!  Yikes! Yes, if your dog is barking and you pick him up, or pet him to quiet him, it may stop the barking, but in the long scheme of things, you will have trained your dog to continue to bark in that same situation next time.

A dog is simple. A dog doesn't scheme, plot, or take revenge.  They don't hold a grudge or need Dr. Phil....and that's why we love them! They love us unconditionally and return for more love after being turned away.  They are our best friends, but we need to remember they are animals, and most importantly....they are a dog. They have dog needs, and dog behavior, and dog rules, and dog language.

Trying to treat a dog like a human, only creates a messed up dog. Dogs don't want to be the leader, but they seek a leader to follow. They also can't handle all our emotional baggage.  That's what Dr. Phil is for! 

So, keep it simple, make it clear, and love em up....and you will always have a best friend for life!


Monday, February 6, 2012

Americas Dogs are Getting Fat!

America is notoriously known for a nation being plaque with weight issues. Our fast food smothered in oils and our super sized quantities ensure we continue to battle the bulge.
   According to the nation's latest veterinary surveys, our four legged friends are wagging their way to obesity also. Good Morning America reported over half the nation’s dogs are overweight!
   In nature, a dog does not become overweight, nor will they starve themselves to death. Are we to blame for putting this predicament on our beloved friends? Are squirrels caught in the wild a low fat healthy choice, or do dogs just not pile an extra bunny in their bowl for lack of flavor?
   America loves dogs. We adorn them in t-shirts and celebrate their birthdays! We would never purposely harm our dogs, yet obesity shortens the time we can spend together.
   Dog food bags with pictures of vegetables make us feel we are making healthy decisions for our best friends, yet often consist of fatty fillers. The price of a truly healthy dog food can restrict it to a privileged pack!
   Living on a budget, the joke in our house is to eat your meal while on the treadmill, and rinse vegetables thoroughly to flush the pesticides, as we avoid lower fat and organic prices.
   I have learned life preserving skills to keep my family of human and canine fit and trim, despite my frugalness. It is a two for one benefit when we share a walk with our dog. Joining a gym and a doggy daycare is another way to ensure we exercise regularly. We measure our meals because portion control always prevents overeating, for those with two or four legs! Any small steps to ensure more exercise and less eating will help keep both our bodies in better shape.
Everyday we try to make better choices, for ourselves and our dogs. Limiting the bad and enhancing the good, to balance ourselves for both our health, and our soul. Our goal is to make every day.... a Dog Gone Good Day!


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Learning to sit

A very simple way to get your dog to sit is to interest him in the scent of a treat. Let him smell the treat, but not eat it. The treat is your leverage; use it to guide your puppy.

Hope, a Service Dog,
ready for a person.
As you let your puppy smell the treat, and really work his nose....tilt his head slightly backwards ( nose to the ceiling). If your puppy sits, immediately reward him by giving him the treat the instant his bottom hits the ground. If your puppy starts to stand up (bottom off the ground) don't let him have the treat! Go back to the beginning of smelling, tilting, etc.

Smell, Tilt, Repeat!

I'm just a Blog

A blog about dogs and their people. I meet many people who love thier dogs but get frustrated when they try to take thier dogs for a walk or wonder why thier dog doesn't come when called.
We buy a car after we learn how to drive, We read the manual to learn about a new tv, computer, or electronic, we take classes, read books, and ask other parents to learn how to raise our kids.

A dog is a dog. Not a person, a child, or item you are born to understand, without a little learning.

 Buster, with severe heart disease,
 captured the heart of every person he met!

Like a child, the instructions are not as clear cut as learning to manipulate the tv or computer. Like a child, sometimes certain things work and sometimes you wonder why the same technique does not work the next time.
Learning to train a dog by trial and error can be very time consuming, as well as frustrating. Like trying to construct the swing set without the directions! Although you may complete the project, there was an easier and more effective way to get success!
Unless you have studied dog behavior, even two dogs of the same litter can require two different styles of training. Pair that with the personality of the owners, and the training process is skewed all over the place.
The good news is.... Training your dog can be simple with the right instruction, and without any tools except your mind.
Imagine the feeling of sharing a relationship with your dog built solely on trust and respect. No collars, spray bottles, or tools needed. Just you.
Experience the difference, and share your home with a polite and well mannered dog.  

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Your Dog's New Years Resolutions.

Your Dog has New Years Resolutions too!

What did your dog scratch out in the dirt to dedicate and promise himself to acheive in the year 2012. Remember one of our years, is seven to a dog, so this New Years Resolution event is a very serious matter!

Did he swear to learn how to open the refridgerator? Or perhaps to finally escape the front door to chase the neighbors annoying cat? Has he always wished he had your fluffy pillow, or your side of the bed? Maybe his dream is to watch more reruns of Lassie's adventures, or to start standing up to your inconsistent rules?

As humans, we love to project our emotions and feelings as those of our dogs oppinion as well.
#1, this helps us to reason, and also to relate.
#2, it is just plain entertaining.

Even if you have watched one episode of the Dog Whisperer, you have heard how important it is to realize people are people, dogs are dogs, and the two minds work differently.

However, as I have learned working with dogs and their people, the people understand better if I explain the dog behavior in people terms. After all, we all love to talk about ourselves!

If we can understand our own motivation, if I can translate this for you to dog language, then we can understand the dog. And when we finally truely understand the dog, we learn to get the dog to behave the way we want him to, and this may be the best New Year's Resolution of all!
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