Training Tips and Tricks
Good info - read all the text before the graphic!
#ysdlearnHi all, I know many dog owners feel that dog parks are great for socializing dogs, but there are many factors to consider.
When talking with one of my students that is a local Emergency Room Veterinarian about dog parks she told me about how many cases she gets on a regular bases caused at dog parks. I asked her for a quote to share to help educate more dog owners to the realities of taking your dog to a dog park.
🩺 Here is Stephanie Silberstang, DVM, Emergency Medicine full quote;
📍"The majority of dog bite injuries that I see in the emergency room occur at the dog park. Large groups of dogs, of varying sizes and play styles, in small spaces is a recipe for disaster. I have treated anything from a nick on the ear to loss of life after a fight at the dog park. In addition to bite wounds, I have also treated kennel cough, gastrointestinal infections, heat stroke, foreign body ingestions, and injuries after escape from the dog park. Generally speaking, dog parks are unsafe."
📍 Please understand to properly socialize dogs we must advocate for all the dogs, and create a environment that is safe for them. In NYC most dog parks are so small it does not give many dogs the option to get away from uncomfortable situations, and most owners are not learned how to see dogs' stress, avoidance and appeasement signals, which puts dogs past their threshold, that lead to many fights.
📍 Many dog parks do not have large and small sections to separate dogs to allow appropriate sized dogs to play and when they do many owners do not abide by them leading to smaller dogs being in very dangerous situations.
📍Owners bring their dogs to the dog parks before they've formed a relationship with them, have formed a common language through training, and have learned to understand their dog's triggers, which can lead to dangerous situations.
📍There is so much unknown about the other dogs at dog parks, including their health, and vaccinations so it causes many dogs to get sick after visiting them.
📍I understand there are dog parks that have great members that do a better job at abiding by the rules but we must be cautious and set our dogs up for success. if you feel you want to take your dog, please take the time to get to know your dog better after adoption. Let your puppy mature and go to a controlled puppy socialization class, teach your dog to have at least basic obedience and a solid recall. Research the dog park and how the attendees monitor their dogs, every time before entering. ... See MoreSee Less
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I’ve always hated the word “obedient”, and train for good manners and safety in a way that is gentle and fun for the dog.
#ysdlearnDO YOU WANT AN OBEDIENT DOG?
CHOOSE TO BUILD CONNECTION INSTEAD OF OBEDIENCE OR CONTROL
Is having an obedient dog that you can control all that society makes it out to be? Do we want a relationship with our dogs or a robot that complies with our every command?
If our dogs are not obedient, are they challenging our power and authority over them? Are they plotting to dominate the human race because they are trying to be the alpha? Are they an embarrassment to us or a bad reflection on our ability to control another living being?
Everyone wants a well-behaved dog, but contrary to popular belief, a well-behaved dog is not the same as a controlled, obedient dog.
What we need to focus on is building connection, relationship and a deeper bond with our dogs.
Focusing on these things is often the answer to many behaviour problems. When this is in place it results in a dog that chooses to do the right thing, wants to be connected to us, feels safe and secure in their environment and builds resilience from having a secure base to rely on.
Take the focus away from control and obedience and instead focus on building a connection with your dog. When we have established connection and built a secure relationship our dogs will automatically be more “obedient’’ not because they are forced to but because they freely choose to. ... See MoreSee Less
Do you always enjoy physical contact like hugs or massages? Maybe, but maybe not when you’re hungry, tired, stressed or hot. Maybe from your significant other but not from family or friends, and certainly not from strangers. Same with dogs!
#ysdlearn ... See MoreSee Less
This is especially pertinent for those of you in certain neighborhoods where dogs routinely escape their yards, including through invisible shock fences. We had one scary incident with my three small dogs years ago. A large unknown dog came running up to us and I yelled “GO! GO! GO!” and thank dog he did!
#ysdlearnPREVENTING DOG ATTACKS
As dog parents we hope that this will never happen to our dogs, but in reality, many of us have personal experience with this really traumatic event.
The consequences of a dog attack are immense - not just the potential physical injuries, but the emotional trauma that often changes a dogs behaviour from there on.
I often wish that I could go back in time, knowing what I know now. I wish that I could have prevented what happened to my dogs if I had tried some of these methods. All I did at the time was scream – I didn’t know what else to do. Screaming only escalated the situation.
My dogs were attacked while out walking in the neighborhood as a person arrived home and opened their front gate just as we had walked past. 2 big dogs chased us up the road and attacked my dogs. One of my dogs had serious injuries requiring stitches, drains and days at the vet. She recovered physically, but years later is still fearful of bigger dogs and hides behind anything she can find in the environment until they have disappeared.
One of my other dogs, although not physically injured at the time, began reacting to any dog that was bigger than her and still does this, years later. The emotional trauma is often far greater than the physical.
Knowing what methods to try in an attempt to prevent a dog attack are so important. It may seem like a hassle to have to carry a few extra things when out walking or to always have to be aware of the environment.
It may sound terrible to have to resort to putting your little dog into a nearby dustbin to protect them or to use a spray or horn device to deter the approaching dog, knowing that it will affect your dog as well.
There is never a guarantee that these methods will work and every situation is different, but we need to do all we can to prevent an attack from happening. ... See MoreSee Less
Thank you for this.
Good advice! And never call your dog from the yard only to put them immediately in the crate and leave the house, they will play keep away for sure!
#ysdlearnARE YOU WORTH COMING BACK TO?
There are many reasons why dogs don’t come back when you want them to. A dog’s genetics play a big role in this when an environment is far more stimulating and exciting and listening and coming back to you disappear into the background as genetic instinct takes over.
An exciting scent or seeing something to chase can all override a response to you.
Genetics aside, a common reason why dogs don’t come back when called is because it’s not a positive experience for them.
I often cringe when I watch owners trying to get their dogs to come to them when they call.
They call and call and get increasingly angry and frustrated as their dog keeps ignoring them.
When their dog eventually does come back, or has been chased and "captured” by their owner, they get screamed at, yanked about, smacked or punished in some way for taking so long and not listening. Why would a dog want to return to someone who does this to them!
Make coming back to you worth it by always making it a rewarding experience.
Have a little patience if it takes longer than you would like, let your dog finish what they’re doing before calling them, practice in different locations and environments and never reprimand or punish them for coming back.
There is never a guarantee of a perfect recall each and every time, but making it rewarding will greatly improve the rate of success. ... See MoreSee Less