Sunday, January 23, 2022

Head Rubs and Belly Rubs!

#AlphDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity Head Rubs and Belly Rubs Published by Alpha Dog Training https:/alpha-dog-training-slc.com/ (801) 910-1700 When we touch and pet our dogs, we are sharing two very powerful emotions with them. Either our weakness or our dominance. The first time I heard this from my mentor it put many things into perspective for me. Maybe it will for you too? Could your relationship use a rebalance? When we touch our dogs and tell them good dog, pull on a leash to keep them from acting like a fool out on a walk, ask them to sit so they don't run out an open gate, restrain them from getting to the front door, owners are often feeling a range of emotions from anger, to frustration, fear, weakness, anxious, shame, and many others we may not be aware of in the moment. We are feeling the opposite of what we should be feeling (leadership) and acting (clear). That's the way dogs understand their environment best. In dog psychology when they interact physically in disapproval those interactions have carry over to future choices. That lasting mental change is a very important piece many people miss when assessing if their behavior modification program is working. Is it getting better? Is it the same? Is it getting worse? Those are the only options. It doesn't stay the same. It’s important to know how our physical interactions with our dogs makes them more resistant and avoidant to our behavior modification attempts. If what we do isn't clear, adds frustration and stress why wouldn't a dog decide to take matters into their own paws? Survival is, after all, about preserving and protecting one's self. So, if the environment isn't set up for a dog's success, can't we sympothize why they aren't getting the lessons we are trying to teach? Let's dig in! Head Rubs and Belly Rubs from Alpha Dog Training!

Friday, January 21, 2022

Dog Training - What Works and What Doesn't

#AlphaDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity Dog Training – What Works and What Doesn’t Published by Alpha Dog Training https://www.alpha-dog-training-slc.com/ (801) 910-1700 Treats can be great motivators. But if your dog will only obey for a treat, then HE is in charge of his obedience, not you. Some dog training methods are based on what makes the OWNER feel good, rather than on what actually makes sense to the DOG. For example.... In our politically-correct world, "positive only" or "purely positive" dog training has become popular nowadays. With that philosophy, you use food to encourage your dog to do something. If he does the desired behavior, he receives the food. If he doesn't do the behavior, nothing happens.... even if he knows how to do the behavior but is choosing to blow you off. You don't even say "No" to him if he does a behavior that you don't want – like barking too much, jumping on people, lunging at other dogs, and so on. No matter how bad his behavior is, you don't do anything that would make him feel the slightest bit uncomfortable or unhappy – even for a split second, and even if doing so would completely solve a really bad behavior. Imagine if we raised our kids that way. The problem with "positive only" dog training. Well, that's easy. It doesn't work. Oh, it's fine for teaching fun things – like tricks – where it really doesn't matter whether your dog obeys or not. If you tell him to shake hands or roll over and he doesn't do it, who cares? But for teaching your dog to come when called in the presence of temptations or distractions.... for teaching your dog to act politely (rather than aggressively or fearfully) toward strangers or other dogs.... for teaching your dog to stop jumping on people, stop barking, stop chasing the cat.......positive-only dog training doesn't work. Think about it. What happens when you want your dog to stop chasing a cat and come to you – but at that particular moment he's not hungry and would RATHER chase the cat than munch on a biscuit? Owners who rely on positive-only dog training are stuck whenever their dog "isn't in the mood" to do something.... or even more importantly, to STOP doing something. An old trainer once said that if a dog really wants to chase a cat, he will chase it "regardless of biscuits showering upon him like manna from heaven." Positive-only dog training does not teach your dog to respect you. And it is RESPECT that motivates a dog to be well-behaved even at times when he doesn't feel like it . Why Respect Training makes more sense to dogs Respect Training is a balanced philosophy of dog training. "Balanced dog training" means both positive and negative consequences for one's behaviors. Real life for ALL living creatures consists of learning from both positive and negative consequences. • Positive consequences encourage us to repeat a behavior. • Negative consequences discourage us from repeating a behavior. For example, we hold the door open and someone says, "Thank you!" (positive), so we are likely to do it again. We take an extra-long lunch break and the boss docks our pay (negative), so we are less likely to do that again. We learn from both positive and negative consequences and behave accordingly. Your dog learns from both positive and negative consequences. Momma Dog will let Puppy know if he is playing reasonably or if he gets too rough. So do dogs. When a puppy plays with his mother, if his style of play is reasonable, she responds in a positive manner. But if he gets too rough, she is quick to correct with a growl. Does Puppy become depressed and never play with another dog again? Of course not. He is happy to play – only more gently. Dogs learn best from balanced dog training, where their behaviors can result in positive OR negative consequences. • Positive consequences means you reward desirable behaviors with praise, petting, toys, games, and yes, treats. • Negative consequences means you correct undesirable behaviors with a corrective word, tone of voice, body language, hands, collar, or the leash. Negative doesn't mean abuse! You can absolutely correct your dog without being cruel. Don't ever let the "purely positive" folks tell you otherwise. • Be realistic and fair with your dog. Show him positive and negative consequences so he can make an informed choice. By showing your dog both positive and negative consequences, he can make a conscious choice to do what you want – not only when he's in the mood for a reward/treat, but also when he might not care a hoot about the reward/treat but he still controls himself because he doesn't want a correction. All of life works this way – "cause and effect." And here's the best part.... When YOU become the arbiter of your dog's behaviors – the one who gets to say yea or nay about what he's allowed to do – your dog feels respectful toward you. And once your dog respects you, he will listen to you. He will pay attention to you. He will do whatever you ask, and stop any misbehavior upon a single word from you.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Pet Misbehaving? May be Your Fault

#AlphaDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity Pet Misbehaving? It Might Be Your Fault Published by Alpha Dog Training https://www.alpha-dog-training-slc.com/ (801) 910-1700 Fear, stress and anxiety are at the root of many problem behaviors in cats and dogs — and in some cases, human behavior is the direct cause of a pet’s actions. Many pet owners fail to understand this, though, and instead blame the dog or cat for the “bad” behavior. Pet owners make three common mistakes that lead to problem behaviors in their dogs and cats. Here’s what they are, and how to fix them. Are You Making These Mistakes? Mistake #1: Ignoring a pet’s body language. The vast majority of pet owners don’t understand what their pets are saying. Your cat or dog may use simple body language to politely request that you give him some space. If you ignore him or misinterpret his signals, he is likely to progress to more pronounced warnings, like a growl or hiss, to get his message across. Failure to heed a pet’s warnings can make it seem like a bite or scratch came out of nowhere. Instead of waiting until your pet lashes out, familiarize yourself with the early signs of anxiety and stress and tailor your own behavior accordingly. Mistake #2: Pushing a pet to face his fears. Repeatedly exposing an animal to a situation that frightens him, without gradual desensitization to allay the stress, is a high-risk strategy and one that can escalate your pet’s panic and fear rather than decrease it. While it is possible that your pet may learn to tolerate whatever it is that scares him (loud noises, bright lights, small children), it is unlikely that he will ever completely lose the associated sense of fear or anxiety. In addition, force- or punishment-based training strategies can escalate anxiety and aggression and deteriorate the bond of trust between person and pet. Reward-based strategies, on the other hand, are more successful at helping a pet learn to manage his stress in scary situations. In some cases, the best resolution is to manage the environment around the pet to remove stressors altogether (when possible). Mistake #3: Forcing a pet to comply with care. Forcing a pet to endure care that scares or upsets him, such as nail trims, grooming or other procedures, can be emotionally and physically dangerous for the pet. An upset cat or dog may struggle during handling or physically fight and bite to get away. A frighted animal can injure himself and anyone caring for him, including veterinary staff, groomers — even his owner. This can compromise a pet’s ability to get necessary veterinary care. A better approach is to teach the pet that calm cooperation earns ample rewards. Such efforts are important both in the home and other places of care, including the veterinarian and the groomer. The mission of Fear Free Certified Professionals is to protect both the physical and emotional health of pets during care. Talk to your veterinarian or groomer about fear-free strategies to help your pet receive the care he needs without the stress.
With all behavior problems, your first stop should be your veterinarian’s office, to make sure your pet’s behavior isn’t connected to a medical issue (especially if the behavior is new to your pet). Once your pet has a clean bill of health, talk with your vet about finding a veterinary behaviorist or reward-based trainer to provide the help your pet deserves.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Dog Help Your Health!

#AlphaDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity Dogs Help Our Health! Published by Alpha Dog Training http://www.alpha-dog-training-slc.com/ (801) 910-1700 Ah, the wonderful blessing of sharing your life with a dog! Not only do they make our hearts bigger and teach us how to love, but it’s been documented that people who live with dogs enjoy lower blood pressure, longer life expectancy, and fewer health problems in general. When we get sick, recovery times are much faster for those of us delighted with a charming, tail-wagging, happy pooch. However, there is another side to this coin… Living with an unruly dog can do quite the opposite. As sentient beings, pups are very receptive to their human companion’s mood and energy. Chances are that if you are stressed out by Fido’s unruliness, your perceptive fur-baby will pick up on that and become stressed or unhappy herself. If left unchecked, stress can wreak havoc on our bodies and minds, contributing to health problems like high blood pressure and heart disease. We certainly don’t want that for ourselves or our dogs! Pup parenthood is a significant journey in one’s life. As the caretaker of your loving being, it is your responsibility to ensure your pup’s behavior is in check. This can easily be accomplished by taking the time to train your dog. Unruliness can also stem from lack of exercise. Daily exercise is crucial for your pup, and it can be integrated into any training program. How Integrative Veterinarians Can Help A great first step in the behavioral healing of your dog is to set aside some essential time to learn how your dog communicates. It’s important to note that many behaviors perceived by humans as unruly are actually normal dog behaviors. However, that doesn’t mean that you’re stuck with them. With effort, diligence, and deep connection with your companion, your dog will become well-trained. Once their new behaviors are established, the relationship shared between you and your love-bug will expand into a new way of being that is heart-centered, trustful, and positively effective in other aspects of your life. Additionally, the health benefits described above will become an essential aspect of your relationship. When you go through basic dog training with your dog (and yes, even old dogs can learn new tricks!), he or she learns the foundations of what is acceptable when living with humans. What is expected of them? When dogs become aware and understand what is expected of them, their stress levels are reduced and their lives are better. As discussed earlier, the bond between a pooch and their human is reflective. Just as stress is experienced simultaneously between dog and human, the same is true for joy and love. This transition to well-trained behavior results in more zen for everyone! When your pup demonstrates good manners, interactions with their environment and other humans are positive for all of those involved. Once this level is obtained, your pup truly becomes your “right-hand man,” and reaches a sense of fulfillment. At this point, your furry companion is a much-loved part of the family and is included in more of the fun of everyday life!

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Smart Training Tips

#AlphaDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity Smart Training Tips Published by Alpha Dog Training of Utah https://www.alpha-dog-training-slc.com/ (801) 910-1700 When our lovable furry friends are being naughty and mischievous our instant reaction is to shout “No!” or “Bad Dog!” but this rarely works. So below are 10 great training secrets
that will make it easier for you to get results. 1. Offer High-Value Rewards There’s nothing wrong with a tummy rub, but they’re just not as rewarding as those coveted pepperoni bits or freeze-dried liver treats. You just need to find out what treat your dog loves when performing new or preferred behaviours. Just make certain that these treats are included in your dog’s daily food allotment, or you might end up with an overweight pooch on your hands. 2. Train in a Boring Environment If you have ever tried to teach your dog something new at the park or while interacting with people, you probably found that it didn’t go as expected. This is simply because there is too much distraction. Therefore, when teaching your dog new behaviour, you’ll want to begin in a boring, non-distracting environ-ment – maybe a room inside your house with no toys, and with your dog on a leash. 3. Stop Yanking on the Leash Are you walking your dog or is your dog walking you? If it’s the latter, forget about yanking on the leash as it won’t work. The reason for this is that dogs have an opposition reflex – you pull back, they’ll pull forward. In other words, if a dog pulls and gets to where it wants to go, the dog has been rewarded and will continue adopting this behaviour. So, what’s the solution? Head back inside for some walking on the leash time. After your dog has walked successfully next to you many times, advance to the backyard, then the front yard, then a few houses down, and so on. 4. Paws on the Floor Everyone is a sucker for cute small dogs, and they’re just as happy to jump on us so that they can receive the attention we want to give them. It might seem rude, but it’s important to tell everyone that your dog comes into contact with that it is in training and they should only pay attention to it when it has settled down and has all four paws on the floor. 5. Stop Digging Digging is a natural and fun activity for dogs – we just don’t enjoy it when they do so in our yards. The solution for dogs that love digging is to give them a place to do it. You can set up a sandbox or designated area where you encourage and reward your dog for digging. This will also keep them out of your flower patch or vegetable garden. 6. Teach Them Where to Poop You’re a good dog owner and always have poop bags handy, but it’s still embarrassing when your dog leaves a parcel on your neighbour’s front lawn while they’re sitting on the front porch. Luckily, there’s a simple solution to this problem – just teach them where to poop. Guide your dog to an area where you want them to poop, wait a couple of minutes, and don’t play or speak with them. Allow them to sniff and carry out their business, and reward them heavily for eliminating by immediately giving them a treat. 7. Pet, Don’t Pat Believe it or not, but dogs generally don’t like being patted on the head. Being patted on the head is a punishment for most dogs and the majority of them merely tolerate being patted on the head. You should try rubbing the side of your dog or behind their ears instead. 8. The Reward Must Equal the Joy What type of reward is it if the command “Come!” is followed by going inside and being told to lie down? The reward simply has to equal the joy of the activity that your dog is leaving behind. For example, chasing cars is fun, especially for herding breeds, but since they’re not exactly herding sheep in a field, it’s not safe. Instead, pair your “come” command with a squeaky ball or toy and have your dog chase you. When they reach you, play tug for a minute and then let him have the ball. 9. Put an End to Begging Teach your canine companion to go to their spot during mealtimes to prevent obnoxious barking or begging during dinner. Once your dog is in their place, you can give them some scratches and a treat. If your dog comes over to the table during dinner, just politely lure them back to their spot. Be consistent and you’ll get the results you require. 10. How to Play Nice with Others Socialization skills are best taught during puppyhood, but regardless of their age, the experience has to be fun and not forced. Attaching positive associations is the best way to make new friends. If your dog loves tennis balls, reward social interaction with a quick game of fetch.

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Why It's Important toTrain Your Dog

#AlphaDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity Why It’s Important to Train Your Dog Published by Alpha Dog Training https://www.alpha-dog-training-slc.com/ (801) 910-1700 Owning a dog can bring lots of joy to your life. But obedience training for dogs is a vital part of socializing them. Without the right training, your dog will struggle to integrate with your friends and family, as well as other dogs. In some cases, this can be stressful or embarrassing. And in serious cases, it could have devastating consequences. As a good dog owner, it’s your responsibility to ensure your dog is properly trained. Ideally, you should begin training your dog when it’s still a puppy. During this time in your dog’s life, your dog will be a lot more receptive to training and will have a greater capacity for learning. It Teaches Your Dog Life Skills When you properly train your dog, you’re giving it the skills it needs to live peacefully among humans and other animals. You might think that domestic dogs have easy lives compared to how they’d live in the wild. But living in a human household puts pressure on your dog that it needs to learn to deal with. Failure to properly train your dog could result in destructive behaviors. For example, they could become anxious and chew up your furniture when you’re not around. Or they could also behave aggressively towards people or other pets. Alleviate Stress If you don’t properly train your dog, you’re doing it a lot of harm in the long-run. Well-trained dogs can integrate well with humans and are generally calm and relaxed. On the other hand, if your dog hasn’t been properly trained, it could be aggressive and scared. If your dog displays anxious behaviors, you can help them by making them feel more secure. If they’re fearful of visitors, you could set up a baby gate that can separate them from the visitors. You could also simply put them in another room. On the flip side, if your dog is over-excitable and jumps up at visitors, you should train them to greet people properly without being so boisterous. It’s important that these kinds of things are addressed early on, as they could cause the dog or other people to be harmed. It Helps Avoid Conflict It’s important that your dog gets experience socializing with other people and other animals. If your dog is uncomfortable with others, it could lead to conflict and perhaps even injury to your dog or someone else’s pet. It simply isn’t practical to keep your dog away from other animals permanently. Inevitably, your dog will be approached by another at some point in time. In order to avoid anxiety or aggression around other animals, your dog should interact with others regularly. Taking your dog to obedience training for puppies when they’re still young is a great way to do this. This doesn’t necessarily mean your dog needs to be enthusiastic about playing with other pets. Some dogs would rather not play with others. Your dog just needs to be comfortable around other animals, without showing any signs of aggression or anxiety. If your dog doesn’t get this kind of exposure, there’s a chance that they’ll react aggressively when they run into another animal. It Can Help You Understand Your Dog Better Obedience training is about much more than just educating your dog. It can also help you to gain an understanding of your dog’s needs. When it comes to training dogs, there’s a lot of misinformation out there. Many people inadvertently make their dogs anxious without even realizing it. Your Dog Will Behave When Left Alone One of the most difficult parts of owning a dog can be leaving them on their own. It’s inevitable that you’ll have to leave your dog home alone at some point. When that time comes, you need to be able to trust that they’ll behave properly. Dogs that haven’t been properly trained might bark and howl for hours on end or they might chew up anything they can get their paws on. Not only can this sort of behavior be very costly, but it can also result in noise complaints being filed against you. When a dog engages in these kinds of behaviors, it means they’re not in a good state of mind. When you train your dog well from an early age, it reinforces good patterns of behavior and reduces separation anxiety. In the majority of cases, a dog that misbehaves when it’s left on its own can be taught to act correctly with the right kind of obedience training. It’ll Help Make Your Dog Safer A dog that doesn’t listen to commands is in danger. The world is full of hazards that dogs might not necessarily understand. For example, a dog doesn’t have an understanding of what a road is. If your dog doesn’t listen to commands, they could run into the road and get hit by a car. When a dog is well-trained, they’re safe from the majority of danger, as they can be directed to avoid it. It’s good practice to teach your dog to sit and wait before crossing the road. When this behavior is ingrained into your dog, they’ll even do it if they get separated from you.
Obedience Training for Dogs: Better Late Than Never Of course, the best time to train your dog is when it’s still a puppy. But it’s never too late to train your dog. Despite what conventional wisdom might suggest, you can teach an old dog new tricks! If your furry friend is having behavioral issues, obedience training for dogs might just be the answer. Training your dog can be a challenge, but the rewards are worth it. When your dog is properly trained, you can take it on all kinds of adventures without worrying about their behavior.

Monday, December 27, 2021

More Top Training Tips

#AlphaDogTraining #dogtrainingsaltlakecity 10 Training Tips for Your New Dog Published by Alpha Dog Training Htpps://www.alpha-dog-training-slc.com (801) 910-1700 Once you bring your new dog home, it’s smart to begin training immediately. But where should you start? What’s the best way to train a puppy? And how do you train an adult dog? There are a number of options for training your new pet. Whether you opt to train your puppy or dog yourself, take classes or hire a private trainer, you can implement the following basic training tips right away to make the process easier. More Top 10 Dog Training Tips Tip 1: Choose Your Dog's Name Wisely Part of the fun of bringing home a new puppy or dog is finding the perfect name for them. But did you know certain names are better for training? It helps to consider a short name ending with a strong consonant that they can always hear clearly. A strong ending, like in the names “Jasper,” “Jack” and “Ginger,” perks up puppy ears — especially when you place emphasis at the end. If your new pet is an older dog, they’re probably used to their name at this point. However, changing it isn’t out of the question. And if your new pal is coming out of an abusive situation, a new name may even represent a fresh start. Dogs are extremely adaptable. If you decide to give them a new name, use it consistently and soon enough your pup will respond to it. Whatever their name, be sure to associate it with fun, pleasant experiences as much as possible, rather than negative ones. Ideally, your pup should think of their name in the same way they think of other fun stuff like walks or dinnertime. Tip 2: Decide on the House Rules Before your new furry pal comes home, decide what they can and can’t do. Are they allowed on the bed or the furniture? Are parts of the house off limits? Will they have their own chair at your dining table? If the rules are determined early, you can avoid confusion — for both of you. Tip 3: Set Up a Private Den Like humans, dogs need their own space. As early as possible, give your pup their own private sleeping place, such as a crate. Your dog will benefit from short periods left alone in the comfort and safety of their den; it can also be a valuable tool for housetraining. Be sure to reward your puppy or dog if they remain relaxed and quiet in their den. Tip 4: Help Your Dog Relax When your puppy gets home, give them a warm hot-water bottle and put a ticking clock near their sleeping area. This imitates the heat and heartbeat of litter mates and will soothe your puppy in their new environment. This tip may be even more important for a new dog that previously lived in a busy, loud shelter, particularly if they’ve had a rough time early in life. Whatever you can do to help your new pet get comfortable in their forever home will be good for both of you. Tip 5: Reward Good Behavior Reward your puppy or dog’s good behavior with positive reinforcement. Use toys, love and lots of praise. Let them know when they’re getting it right. Along those same lines, never reward bad behavior, as it’ll only confuse them. Tip 6: Teach Your Pup to Come When Called Come, Jasper! Good boy! The first command you teach your pet should be to come. Get down on their level and tell your pup to come using their name. When they do, get excited and use lots of positive reinforcement. Next time, try the “come” command when they’re distracted with food or a toy. As your puppy gets older, you’ll continue to see the benefits of perfecting this command. Tip 7: Train on "Dog Time" Puppies and dogs live in the moment — two minutes after they’ve done something, they’ve already forgotten about it. So, when your pup is doing something bad, use your chosen training technique right away so they have a chance to make the association between the behavior and the correction. Consistent repetition will reinforce what they’ve learned. Tip 8: Discourage Jumping Right Away Puppies love to jump up in greeting, and some adult dogs have learned bad habits. When your puppy or dog jumps on a person, don’t reprimand them; just turn your back on them, ignore the behavior and wait until they settle down before giving positive reinforcement. Never encourage jumping behavior by patting or praising your dog when they’re in a “jumping up” position. Tip 9: Say No to Biting and Nipping Instead of scolding your new pet, a great way to discourage your mouthy canine is to pretend you’re in a lot of pain when they bite or nip you — a sharp, loud yell should work. Most dogs are so surprised that they stop immediately. If verbal cues don’t work, try trading a chew toy for your hand or pant leg. This swap trick can also work when a puppy discovers the joys of chewing on your favorite shoes. They tend to prefer a toy or bone anyway. If all else fails, interrupt the biting behavior and respond by ignoring them. Tip 10: End Training Sessions on a Positive Note Your puppy or dog has worked hard to please you throughout their training. Leave them with lots of praise, a treat, some petting or five minutes of play. This almost guarantees they’ll show up at their next class or training session with their tail wagging, ready to work! Bonus tip: When your puppy is old enough, think about getting them neutered or spayed. The same goes if you adopt a dog. A neutered or spayed dog might be more docile, less aggressive and more open to successful training.