Showing posts from October, 2011

What To Do When A Dog Charges You

I was walking down the street this weekend and a dog came out of nowhere and ran at me with his teeth showing, baking like a crazy animal.  I got away just in time and darted into a neighbor's back yard.  Is there any thing I can do to avoid this?
We have all experienced the barking and running dog at one time or another.  The important thing to remember is to how to present an uninteresting target to the dog.  The barking and running dog does not come around the corner and go after the tree or the stop sign.  They are uninteresting.  You, on the other hand, present a very interesting "target".  Let's look at some ideas to make you more uninteresting.
Dogs need to recognize who you are in order to make a decision about how they are going to act.  Many times dogs have a hard time recognizing men wearing dark glasses and hats.  If you see a dog approaching and they seem the slightest bit pensive, take off your sun glasses and your hat.  This will help the dog to recogniz…

How to Help Wolfie When He is Scared and Growling

Wolfie seems a little scared all the time. He growls at people and when I try and tell him to stop, it just gets worse! What gives?

This sounds like Wolfie is timid and is manifesting that with aggressive behavior. He has figured out that if he snarls and growls at people, they will stay away.

One thing that you must understand is that your normal response of using a strong correction (yelling “NO”, etc.) to address the snarling and growling does not work. All this is doing is showing Wolfie that he has lost his only ally in the house. What you must do is to build a new foundation based on a relationship of trust and respect between you and Wolfie. This, and only this, will earn you the right to have a relationship where Wolfie respects and obeys you.

Start to correct Wolfie in a very matter fact way. To do this, have a leash on Wolfie when people are over. As soon as Wolfie starts his growling and other bad behaviors, pick up the leash and briskly walk in the opposite direction of the p…

Wolfie Has Too Much Energy

I put in long hours at work and when I get home, Wolfie is always all over me.  I am tired and I can't get him outside to play a lot.  What can I do?

 I see this a lot with our clients.  They work all day and just don't have the time to have a good, hard "play" with their dog when they get home from their ten hour day.  Dogs need to have that time to drain their adrenaline and you and Wolfie need the time to build the Bond, Trust, and Respect that your relationship requires.
We still suggest that you get outside as much as possible, throw the Frisbee, toss the ball, hide goodies and them help him find it, or perform some agility games.  What we now want to suggest is one more thing that will help take up the slack of the time you can't spend with him.
The answer is simple and it has worked wonders for many of our clients who have found themselves in this predicament. Take Wolfie to Doggie Daycare once or twice a week while you are at work.  He will be well cared fo…

When Your Dog Doesn't Seem to "Get it"

I am working with Wolfie every day, but he just doesn't seem to get it.  What is the problem here?

Like people, dogs need to learn at a particular speed and at a particular level.  Unlike us, they can't "jump ahead" or skip steps in the learning process.  It must be slow, methodical, repetitive, and consistent.

When Wolfie "isn't getting it", it normally means that we are trying to teach him a command at a level or complexity above his current ability to process.  When this happens, we must back up to find a place where Wolfie can succeed in the exercise and then slowly proceed from that point.  For Wolfie, there is no shame in going back a few grades to find a place where he can obey and please us.

Let me give you an example of this process:

Say, for example, I am working with Wolfie on the "Come" exercise.  I had him in the house and was using a six foot leash to have him come to me every time I said "come".  Once in a while, I had to …

Wolfie Always Runs Thru The Door Ahead of Me!

Wolfie always runs through the door ahead of me!  Even if I am just walking from the family room to the living room, he always has to be the first one in...  It just bugs me!

Guess what!  In the dog's world, the alpha leader must always be out front to check out that everything is safe for the rest of the pack to follow.  As you go from room to room, that is a new place and a new opportunity for Wolfie to do his job and make sure everything is safe for you.  Wolfie thinks he is the leader.  I am not going to delve into readjusting the pack to allow Wolfie to understand that you are the leader today.  What I am going to do is to provide you with the training instructions to allow you to go through first.

Here is what you do:
Put Wolfie on a leash and slowly approach the door.Stop when you are about two feet from the door and command Wolfie to Sit and Wait.Slowly open the door, always making sure that Wolfie is not getting ready to move.  If you see Wolfie getting ready to move or if W…