LUV My dogs: trained

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Showing posts with label trained. Show all posts
Showing posts with label trained. Show all posts

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Most Important Commands Your Dog Needs To Learn

Most Important Commands Your Dog Needs To Learn
  When training your dog you're going to be teaching him commands. These are special words that you repeat over and over to condition him to obey. Although there are certain command words that most trainers teach, in theory you could use any word you want to designate a command. 
  We all love to teach our dogs tricks. Some are frivolous like "play dead" and some are important, like going potty only when outdoors. But there are other tricks to teach our furry friends that could save their lives.
  But what is most important is consistency. You must always use the same word for the same command. Mixing command words up will only confuse your dog and make training him more difficult if not outright impossible.
  Some dogs are smart enough to learn 165 words or even more. Just how smart they can be largely depends on the breed and how much time you spend with them.
  No dog, however, is smart enough to realize every single danger he can get himself into. There are poisonous snake bites, open wells, automobiles, medication, antifreeze and getting trapped in places where he cannot get out. 
No- As the word implies, no is used whenever your dog is doing what he should not be doing. For instance if he urinates on the floor instead of going to his crate to pee saying no in a stern tone of voice gives him the message that what he did is not okay.
  The key thing to remember with dogs is that your tone of voice is extremely important. With conditioning commands like “no” it's as if not more important than just the word itself. This is because dogs are very influenced by body language and voice tone.


Sit-  is one of the most basic tricks we can teach our dogs. When a dog is in a "sit" position, he knows he is meant to stay sitting until you say otherwise. If you need your dog to just chill out while you take care of something, you can put him in a sit position, knowing he won't run off and get into trouble while you're distracted. It's a perfect command for situations like standing in a crowded place or if you're loading the car for a trip and need Fido to hang out before getting in. Or on the flip side, telling your dog to "sit" before opening the door of the car to let him out gives you time to open the door, leash him up, and make sure no other cars are coming in the street or parking lot before allowing him to exit the vehicle.Sit is an important command because it puts your dog in a semi-submissive position and helps to calm his brain. A dog that goes from being excited to sitting has had to change gears mentally and refocus. This can be useful when putting on his leash or when someone wants to greet him. Sit can also be a primer for other commands such as stay and lie down. You can also use the sit command after other commands, such as "off" or "quiet", to reinforce the change of focus.


Good Dog- On the flipside saying “good dog” lets your dog know that they're doing what they should be doing. When you say this you should combine it with a physical gesture praising your dog for a job well done. This one should come naturally to most of us but what's important is knowing how to use it in combination with other commands we're going to talk about so you can positively condition your dog so he wants to follow your commands.

Lie down- The "lie down" trick is another way to have your dog stay in one place and out of trouble. Teaching your dog to lie down — especially if you teach him to drop to a down position when you signal from far away — can go a long way in keeping him out of trouble. A down position is one of increased vulnerability, so if your dog is getting too rambunctious around other dogs or is too wound up in a certain situation and simply needs to mellow out, a "lie down" command gives him an opportunity to calm down and remember his human is the one who is in control. Like the "sit" command, this is an active command, meaning your dog isn't just lounging — he should be purposefully staying in one spot, keeping focus on you and waiting for his next command. Both the sit and lie down commands are excellent for bringing a boisterous dog back down to earth before a situation escalates out of control — such as when other dogs are around that might spark a fight, small children might get hurt, or other attention-grabbers pull your dog's focus away from you.
Stay- What dog owner hasn't had a dog that you loved with all your heart but for the life of you could get to stay in one place? That's where this command fits in. 
Sit your dog down and with a stern tone, tell your dog to “stay”. If he doesn't listen, say “no” and start again. The key is repetition and consistency. If you start while he's a puppy it shouldn't take too long.

Come- This trick is rather obvious. After all, knowing that your dog will return to your side without fail in any situation is a big part of ensuring he will be safe. But getting that "rocket recall" can be tough. When a dog is distracted, or knows that you are much more boring than whatever trouble he is getting into, then getting him to come when called is a challenge. There are different ways to approach it, depending on a dog's personality, but the best way to make sure your dog beelines back to you when you call is to give him the most amazing treat he can possibly imagine every time he comes back to your side. Whether it is rotisserie chicken, or liver baby food, or tripe, make sure he only gets that treat when he hears, and obeys, the recall command. Then he knows that when he hears the word "come" he'll get a jackpot of a reward. Here's a great video about getting a rocket recall with an example of exactly why it is so important for your dog to come back to you no matter what else is happening.

Down- This command should be used when requesting your dog to lie down with his belly to the ground. This puts a dog in a submissive position, helps you gain control, and helps his mind relax. It is very useful if he is in an excited or stressful situation such as at the vet's office or if he needs to maintain a "stay" position for a long period of time. Be consistent with how this word is used and do not interchange it with other commands such as "off" or "lie down".

Heel- is the first command that should be taught when training your dog to walk on the lead, and is the first stage towards teaching heelwork and enabling your dog to walk beside you safely even when off the lead. The “heel” command should be used when in close quarters to call your dog to your side, and to indicate to them that they should walk beside you, matching your pace and staying close. “Heel” is an important command to keep your dog safe when walking on the roads, and to safeguard your dog and other people and animals when passing each other in close quarters.
Your name is the most exciting word in the world- To humans, names are really important. It is embedded in us to use someone's name to get their attention. Why bother fighting against that compulsion to say a name when needing your dog's attention? But if it works for us to say the name, we need to make sure it works for the dog to hear his name. Teaching a dog to love his name sets the foundation for everything else in your relationship as it creates a level of trust as well as willingness to learn more tricks. And it can also be a lifesaver when out and about. For instance, if a dog is reactive to other dogs while on leash and his attention begins to zero in on a dog walking toward you on the street, you can say your dog's name to bring his attention back to you. You can give him other commands or treats until the other dog has passed. You avoid conflict, and you etch away at that reactivity since your dog will realize that keeping his attention on you is much more rewarding than getting freaked out by that strange dog ahead. You now have an invaluable tool that can be used in situations from busy streets to chaotic dog parks to finding a dog that has wandered off out of sight.

Drop It-  is one of the most important commands you can teach your dog. You are requesting from your dog that he release something from his mouth, that at least for the moment, he highly values. It can be something as simple as a shoe, as dangerous as a medicine bottle, or as delicate as a bird. It is best to teach this command long before you need to use it. Practice with lures that are just slightly more valuable than the item he currently has and he will naturally want to trade.

Stand- This command requires a dog to stand with all feet on the grand and to distribute his weight evenly. This is especially helpful at the vet's office when a nervous dog would rather sit or lie down. It is also useful when trying to trim your dog's nails or give him a bath. This command will be bring your dog to attention and can be a precursor for the command "come".

Leave It- This is an especially good command for dogs who will not hesitate to grab a snake, a kitten or a dropped pill with their teeth. Some dogs will not discriminate in what they swallow.
Have your dog on a leash and drop a toy onto the ground. Walk your dog past the toy just short of where he could get it. As soon as you notice him pulling toward the toy, sharply say, “Leave it” and pull him away. When he walks away without your having to pull him, reward him with a snack and tell him what a good dog he is. Repeat this with a longer leash and later without a leash, until he listens to you and ignores the toy. Never forget to reward and praise.

Wait- The command “Wait” will help you tremendously when you have to take your dog for a checkup. In the time you open the car door and the crate door, your dog can be out and running into the street before you get the chance to put the leash on him.
  Teaching him to wait lets him know that he has to stand still for a short time until you are finished with some task. Teach him to wait until you give him permission to go through a door, for instance.
  Open your door and give him enough leash that he could walk through the door. When he is at the front of the door, pull the leash tight and say, “Wait.” Have him sit if he already knows that command. If he doesn’t listen, pull the leash and release a little in quick succession. Praise him and give him a snack when he finally gets it. Practice until he waits until you are through the door and then allow him to follow.
  Remember that training is an ongoing endeavour, and not something that takes a few weeks to teach when your dog is a puppy and that then takes care of itself!



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Thursday, May 1, 2014

Best Sport for Your Dog

Best Sport for Your Dog
   For some dogs, even regular long walks and access to a big backyard just aren't enough of a challenge. You want your pup to test their mental and physical prowess and allow them to have some fun. How can you do this? Dog sports!
  These days, the choices in dog sports and recreation are nearly endless. Dog sports are great options to keep active dogs both physically and mentally healthy. All dogs need some degree of exercise, but most will thrive with extra stimulation. Very active dogs are ideal candidates for high-performance sports like agility and flyball, though almost any healthy dog can enjoy participation.
  Be sure your dog has a thorough veterinary evaluation prior to starting any dog sport. Once your vet gives clearance, consider these top dog sports that can challenge your dog's mind and body while reinforcing the canine-human bond.

Agility
    Is your dog incredibly fit and great with taking commands? If so, dog agility training can be incredibly rewarding for both you and the pup in question.
  Canine agility is a competitive dog sport that takes place within an obstacle course. Dogs are trained to make jumps, travel through tunnels, and navigate various walkways - all in a specific order. Each step of the way, the dogs are directed by their owners.
  Agility is an excellent form of exercise and mental stimulation, making it ideal for high energy dogs like Border Collies and Australian Shepherds. However, just about any dog can participate in agility. The intensity and difficulty of the course can be altered to accommodate dogs with health complications or special needs. Teamwork between dog and human is the cornerstone of this sport.

Best for: Top breeds for agility training include Jack Russell terriers, Pembroke Welsh corgis, Shetland sheepdogs, Border collies, and Australian shepherds, but the most important factors are that your dog has lots of energy, a desire to please, and is physically active.

 Canine Freestyle
  Canine Freestyle is a choreographed musical performance by a dog/handler team. Like it sounds, this activity is like dancing with a dog! As implied by its name, in canine freestyle almost anything goes. Basically, any move is allowed unless it puts the dog or handler in danger. Routines typically involve the dog performing twists & turns, weaving through the handler's legs, walking backwards, jumping, and moving in sync with the handler.
  Canine Freestyle requires a deep bond between handler and dog as well as a mastery of basic commands - especially "heel." Before putting a routine together, the dog must first learn each individual "move." A dash of creativity, plenty of patience and a positive attitude will go a long way.

Music Heelwork
  You’ve heard of this. You just don’t know it because most people call it dog dancing. Open to canines of any breed, Heelwork requires fantastic coordination and communication for owners and their dogs to dance naturally together. Many people practice routines for several months before taking an act to a competition, and some even incorporate costumes.

  Best for: One of the best things about Heelwork to music is that dogs of any breed can participate, as can those at various levels of physical prowess. More physically fit dogs don’t necessarily have an advantage, because owners can tailor routines to their dog’s strengths. That being said, Heelwork is best for dogs who are well-trained and remain completely under their owner’s control even while off-leash. If your dog hasn’t received any kind of obedience training yet, you’ll need to provide that first.


Disc Dogs
  During disc dog competitions, dog/handler teams are judged in disc-throwing events like distance/accuracy catching and freestyle routines. "Frisbee" is a trademarked brand name for a flying disc, hence the reason the word "disc" is often used.
  To become a successful disc dog team, the handler must be able to properly throw a disc - and far. The dog can then be trained to chase and catch the disc. During distance competition, the field is broken into zones by yard. Scoring is based on the zone in which the disc is caught. Freestyle events are judged and scored based on a predetermined point system. Rules and scoring vary with each disc dog group, club or association.

Tracking
  You probably have noticed that your dog's nose is his most dominant sense. Most dogs want to follow their noses. Why not turn this talent into a fun and challenging activity?
  A tracking trial is a type of test that requires a dog to follow a scent trail. These events mimic search-and-rescue missions, assessing the dog's natural ability and willingness to follow a trail left by human footsteps. Dogs and their handlers often enjoy this work, and success can open doors to pursue real life search-and-rescue work.

Splash Dogs

  You can probably guess much of what this sport entails — dogs are enticed to jump into the water from a ramp to retrieve a toy. Whichever one jumps the farthest is the winner. It’s provides a fantastic workout, because swimming forces dogs to use muscles they otherwise wouldn’t.



  Best for: Water breeds, like Newfoundland, Irish setter, or English setter. But any dog that loves water will enjoy it.


Rally Obedience
  In Rally Obedience, dog/handler teams must complete a course made up of signs describing specific obedience exercises to perform. Judges design the course and observe as the teams swiftly navigate the course.
  Rally Obedience rules tend to be less strict than traditional obedience competitions. Typically, Rally competition is open to all breeds. Trials usually have several levels, and teams compete for titles and championships.

Earthdog
  People with tiny terriers should definitely try Earthdog if they’re looking for a fun and productive way to direct their dog’s desire to dig. Competitors are taken out into the field and tasked with finding and digging out rats (most commonly) that have been buried in a completely safe cage or artificial quarry. But only small terriers are allowed, so don’t even try with larger breeds.

  Best for: The American Kennel Club (or AKC) has a long list of the specific types of breeds that are eligible for Earthdog events. But you should be aware that your terrier has to be six months or older and cannot be a mixed breed. Short-legged, high-energy dogs are best suited to this sport.

Lure Coursing
  Lure coursing is a fast-paced chase sport that was developed as an alternative to hare coursing. Rather than chasing a live animal, dogs chase an artificial lure across a field, compete for best time. Sometimes, obstacles are involved in the race. While traditionally limited to sighthounds, all-breed lure coursing groups are becoming more common. Lure coursing is an ideal activity to allow your dog to act upon his chasing instinct in a safe, humane way.

Flyball
  The sport of flyball is a type of relay race that involves teams of four dogs. One dog from each team runs down a course, jumping hurdles, towards the "flyball box." The dog steps on a panel and triggers the flyball box to release a tennis ball. The dog then brings the ball back over the hurdles to its handler. Once a dog has completed the course, the next dog is released from the starting line. The first team to have all four dogs complete the course wins. The game is played in several heats. Flyball is a great way for your dog to enjoy time with other dogs, plus a nice way for you to meet other dog owners.

Once you've chosen your sport, start working.
  Research your sport! Research sources include the internet, books, instructional videos, and dog owners experienced in the sport.
  Train your dog. Start with basic training, (if you haven't already) and then start training for your particular sport. Training techniques vary, based on the sport. Ask your local kennel club or someone who is experienced in the sport if you need help. Practice frequently!


  Get competitive! Once you think your dog is ready, enter a competition. Look for a competition being held. You may have to travel; have good traveling equipment at hand.






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Friday, April 4, 2014

The Most Expensive Dog Breeds

The  Most Expensive Dog Breeds
  Man’s best friend doesn't always come free. In fact, some are willing to pay in the thousands for certain types of dogs, even breeds that are fairly easy to obtain. Though costs will vary based on location and breeder, these 13 breeds often have the highest average price tag.
  The most popular dog breeds are not the worlds most expensive dog breeds,  but the luxury dogs rate high in the top of the list. Popular dog breeds change from year to year and from country to country; and so do the most expensive dogs in the world.

What Makes a Dog Expensive?
  There are a variety of factors which make dogs expensive. Purity of breed or their rarity can make dogs extremely expensive. When they are offspring from prize winning dogs the prices can skyrocket too, but the biggest factor is the C-factor. As soon as a dog is spotted or photographed in possession of a celebrity, the dog’s price will shoot beyond the moon. It has happened in the past, and it will happen in the future.

The most expensive dog ever sold
  The most expensive dog ever sold was recently in March 2011, a red “Tibetan mastiff” called Big Splash, or “Hong Dong” in Chinese.  This most expensive dog ever is already 11 months-old and already stands nearly three-feet-high at the shoulder and weighs more than 180lbs, says his breeder, Lu Liang.   He was purchased by a chinese multi-millionaire coal baron.
  ‘Big Splash’ sold for an amazing 10 million Yuan which is about 1.5 million US Dollars and beats the earlier record set by another Tibetan Mastiff Tibetan mastiff” called Yangtze River Number Two which was sold to a chinese woman in 2009 for a whopping 4 million Yuan (About $609,000).   But this still doesn’t make the Tibetan Mastiff generally the most expensive dog breed.

The Most Expensive Dog Breeds
  Roaming along the internet, in a variety of countries here is a countdown of the top most expensive dog breeds our editors found.

1.Irish Wolfhound ($1,500 to $2,000)
  Two thousand dollars might seem a small price to pay for the tallest of dogs, also known for a commanding appearance. Irish Wolfhounds are known for their athletic ability, especially in endurance running. And of course, there is an Irish proverb to describe their personality: “Gentle when stroked, fierce when provoked.”

2.Saluki – $2,500
  The Saluki is a breed of dog that is known for its aloofness. This breed is very loyal to its owner and can become extremely attached to a single person. These are great with children as long as the children do not roughhouse and act as a threat.
  The Saluki is an insecure breed that must be trained gently but with a firm and consistent manner. They are submissive by nature and can be easily distracted. It’s important that you establish your status as the pack leader or else your Saluki will not feel secure with its surroundings.

3.Pharaoh Hound ($2,500 to $6,500)
  Another one of the oldest domesticated dogs in history, the Pharaoh Hound is thought to have originated in Egypt as far back as 3000 B.C., according to the AKC. A medium-sized dog with a coat that can range from tan to chestnut to red golden, Pharaohs have a unique "blush" in which their nose and ears turn a deep rose color with excitement. Used today for hunting, obedience and lure coursing, Egyptian Pharaoh Hounds are friendly, playful and intelligent family members. Their athleticism also requires regular exercise, particularly in a fenced-in area to prevent them from chasing after small game. 


4.Akita ($1,500 to $4,500)

  The Akita breed originated in Japan. Akita dogs are docile, courageous, fearless, and surprisingly intelligent. They are family oriented dogs. Akitas socialize well and they can be very spontaneous. The Akita needs a firm and confident pack leader or else they will act spontaneously and out of order often.

  Because the Akita needs a firm leader, it is important that all humans establish their higher-order over the dog, or else you may see excessive biting and growling coming from it. The proper training and exercise will ensure that you have a well-tempered animal.



5.Chow Chow – $3,000 – $8,000

  An ancient breed that dates back to around 300 B.C., Chow Chows are thought to have originated in China and served as hunting, birding and guard dogs. A medium-sized dog with a large head and round muzzle, the Chow Chow is recognizable by their blue-black tongue and lion-like coat. Loyal to their owners and prized by dog fanciers for their regal appearance, Chow Chows are truly a unique breed.




  Though it is thought to be one of the most influential and ancient dog breeds, the history of the Tibetan Mastiff remains a mystery. While some function as livestock protectors, most Tibetan Mastiffs are kept as family guardians and companions. A large, strong breed with a massive head, thick coat and long, bushy tail, the rareness of the Tibetan Mastiffs can drive up their prices. In 2011, a Tibetan Mastiff by the name of "Big Splash" was sold for an astounding 1.5 million dollars by a Chinese businessman, making it the most expensive dog ever sold.

  The massive Tibetan Mastiff displays a “noble bearing” and a royal price tag to go with it. It is an aloof and watchful breed, with an immense double coat and a kind expression. But the breed’s dignified personality can also translate into a reluctance to participate in organized activities like obedience.

7.Cavalier King Charles Spaniel –  $1,000 - $14,000 
  Named in honor of King Charles II of England, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has been considered a fashionable lap dog and family companion since the 17th century. Easygoing and friendly, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels thrive in both the city and the country and require regular grooming.

8.Rottweiler ($2,000 to $8,000)
  Rottweilers are as multi-talented as they are robust and powerful. The intelligent, patient breed often works as a police dog, herder, service dog, therapy dog, or obedience competitor. But Rottweilers are also protective and self-confident, making them excellent companions.

9. Lowchen ($5,000 to $8,000)
  L√∂wchen means “little lion” in German, a fitting name for this small dog with an impressive mane of hair and talent for agility. The breed is often given a “lion” trim, too: clipped close to the skin at the hindquarters, with cuffs of hair around the ankles and a plumed tail.

  Originally used during the 19th century in England for bull baiting, Bulldogs exhibit courageousness and ferocious tenacity. With a clownish and amiable personality, Bulldogs have become popular companion dogs and are now among the most popular breeds in the United States. Known for its affinity for sleeping and eating, Bulldogs require little more than a daily walk. Because of their short muzzles, the breed is prone to breathing problems among other health-related issues, making them a more expensive choice than other breeds.

11. Samoyed ($4,000 to $11,000)
  Bright and alert, with a weather-resistant coat, Samoyeds excel at agility, herding, weight pulling, sledding, pack hiking, and conformation shows, among many others. But the Samoyed’s premium price could also be due to its looks: a coat that ranges from pure white to biscuit, and black lips that curl into a well-known “Samoyed smile”.
  Originating from Siberia, the Samoyed is a devoted and friendly man’s best friend who is not afraid to be playful when the time is right. Samoyeds are a gentle breed who are friendly to everyone they come in contact with, including intruders of your home. It’s much too friendly for you to use it as a watchdog, although it will definitely alert you when they are in the presence of someone strange.

12.German Shepherd- $3,000 - $24,000 
  A breed that's both intelligent and versatile, the German Shepherd was originally developed to guard and herd flocks of sheep but today makes for an ideal companion and, among other things, police, guard, war and search-and-rescue dog. Because of their versatility and skill set, a well-trained German Shepherd can be a costly expense. The breed is a devoted family dog but can be protective and suspicious towards strangers and other dogs.

13.Bearded Collie- $1,000 and $5,000
  The Bearded Collie is considered as one of Britain’s oldest breeds. It was in 1514 when a Scottish shepherd was said to breed a Polish Sheepdog with his other herding and flock dogs such as the Komondor and Old English Sheepdogs. These breeds were said to form the foundation of the breed. In 1967, the first litter of Bearded Collies in the USA was whelped.
  Bearded Collies are good hunting and herding dogs. They can grow to a height of 20-22 inches and can weigh 60 pounds. They do not thrive well when kept indoors in cramped living spaces. They hate to be confined and prefer to be outdoors even in adverse weather conditions.

  More is not always better. The price of the dog is not important, it is all about the love it gives to you and the love you can give back to the animal.

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