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Training Tips & Tricks To Teach Your Dog!

Remember: Bored dogs cause problems. If you don't keep your dog's mind stimulated, chances are that he'll find activities to stimulate his mind, himself. And you won't like those activities:)
A dog that is mentally stimulated on a daily basis is a happy dog. And happy dogs don't cause dog problems.

Here is a quick list of how to keep your dog mentally stimulated:

1. Exercise! Lots of exercise. If you can incorporate exercise with another activity such as playing "find the ball", or doing some agility exercises, then that's even better.

2. Brain teaser toys. There are a number of cool toys that actually challenge your dogs mind. For example, the "Buster Cube", a plastic cube that releases a pellet of food, every 3rd or 4th time the cube is rolled over.

3. Small rituals done at the same time of the day, every day. For example, feeding time, grooming, walks, "cookie" time, car trips, etc...

4. Dogs like to work! Teach your dog to bring in the newspaper, carry mail back from the mailbox, heel next to you when you take the trash out, bring your slippers, keys, phone or whatever to you, etc...

5. Do obedience training with your dog! Obedience training requires your dog to use his brain and think. Knowing that he will be praised for making the right decision and corrected for making the wrong decision (and allowed the opportunity to make the right decision again) instills a sense of responsibility in your dog and demands that he use his noggin. Remember: Dogs are bred to work. They've been blessed with super-human instincts and drives and they need an outlet for those drives!

(Copyright 2003-2006 By Browning Direct, Inc. & Adam G. Katz)


Most behavior problems are correctable!

Don't despair! Make sure your dog has a clean bill of health, then contact Linda (978-356-8388), she can help!

Prevention is always the best cure for behavior problems! Lack of training and physical & mental under stimulation (boredom) are primary causes of misbehavior. They can be easily prevented by enrolling in basic training classes and keeping your dog mentally & physically stimulated at home.

Petiquette 101 with Cesar Millan http://www.lifescript.com/channels/print.asp?xml=petiquette%5F101%5Fwith%5Fcesar%5Fmillan%5F7246%2Exml

Be a responsible dog owner


Training collars and containment systems:


Support a rescue when you purchase a quality toy here



The Importance of Socialization & Training Your Pup

It is very important to start training & socializing your pups as soon as possible. You can start bringing your pup to different environments as early as 8 weeks old, as long as it is a safe and clean place. Socializing & training away from your home environment helps build confidence. It is important that your pup does not become "fearfull of the unknown". This may happen if your pup is not socialized properly, so please make sure your pup is getting out into the world so he can learn that there is nothing to fear! If your pup starts showing signs of fearfullness, find a good trainer who can help you through this period. If your pup starts barking at people and other dogs, correct him for it immediately. Do not allow your pup to bark in your car as well. Allowing this only teaches your pup that it is ok to be scared. Your pup needs to learn proper behavior in and out of it's home, and it is up to you to teach him what is acceptable and what is not. A properly trained & socialized dog makes a better family member and good citizen!


The many uses for the "STAY" command:

Stay is a very useful behavior in everyday situations, like when your walking and need to tie your shoe, or if at a pet supply store and need to sign a charge slip or write a check.

Stay helps develop your dog's self control and helps a dog settle during exciting times such as when your fixing diner or when you are gathering the leash & treats for a walk.

Stay can be useful at the vet and during grooming.

It is an essential behavior for dog sports such as competitive obedience & agility.

It can be a life-saving behavior. for example, a good stay can prevent a dog frm racing into the street.

Practicing Stay in Everyday Life:
(Here are a few fun, everyday exercises to strengthen your dog's stay)

* Ask your dog to sit or down and stay while you prepare your dog's diner. Release and reward with his meal.

* When you play tug with your dog, periodically stop the action and ask your dog to sit or down. Gradually build up to longer sit/stays or down/stays, with you moving away from or walking around your dog before resuming the game.

* Ask your dog to sit or down and wait before you toss the ball. As with the tug game, build up to longer stays before releasing. At first, release the dog with "OK!" and then toss the ball as the reward. Later, as a more advanced exercise, practise having your dog stay while you toss the ball, release him to retrieve after the ball has landed.

* Practice wait or stay at the doorways each time you leave the house or let your dogs out of the car.

* Practice stay once or twice on daily walks.

* Practice longer down/stays or "go to bed" while you watch TV in the evenings.

(written by Mardi Richmond)


Want to have alot of fun with your dog? If your dog has had basic obedience and knows most of his commands, then you may want to look into Agility or Rally-O. Agility requires the dog to be able to follow commands and be very active at the same time. It involves obstacles (tunnels, a-frames,board walks,weave poles,etc.) & jumps. It's a great way to boost your dogs confidence! Rally-O requires your dog to follow commands and follow you through a course of obedience instructions. Both are alot of fun! You can find a training facility near you by going to the AKC website.You can also find a place that is holding a CGC test. For a CGC (Canine Good Citizen), your dog must be obedience trained and be very social with people & other dogs. Find out more about the test at the AKC website.

Be aware of Toxic Algae! Use caution when letting your dog swim in ponds and lakes. Check this website for important information about blue green algae. www.pca.state.mn.us/water/clmp-toxicalgae.html




The German Shepherd Dog is nothing short of a highly gifted dog. It's intelligence is the envy of most of the dog world. It is able to perform almost any task that man has asked of it, including guide dog, avalanche rescue, tracking, watchdog, police dog, drug and bomb sniffing, and it is still herding sheep in it's native homeland.

Highly intelligent, obedient, easy to train, protective, brave, and fiercely loyal are just some of the words used to describe this breed. Although high intelligence is often a sought after trait in a dog, it is not always a desirable one. Any prospective owner of a German Shepherd Dog needs to assure that they are willing to put in the extra effort to mentally stimulate their new family member. This breed needs to be involved in "extra-curricular" activities including early obedience. Consider joining a local club with your dog and you can both enjoy the benefits of activities like flyball, agility, advanced obedience, field trials, dog sledding, or Schutzhund. Giving your German Shepherd Dog "responsibilities" around the house will help to make your dog happier, and remember that "this breed only stops learning once we stop teaching".

German Shepherd Dog - Training your German Shepherd Dog
by Jayne Shenstone


The German Shepherd Dog truly is a wonderful animal and not only do they make good working dogs, they also make superb family pets. They are however very different from other pet breeds and need to be handled and trained with a different approach to say your average Labrador or poodle for instance.

The German Shepherd Dog is a large, strong athletic dog, which needs a lot of mental stimulation and exercise but a well trained shepherd can learn to do almost anything. These dogs positively thrive on challenging activities and they are so willing to serve their master and please. As a working dog used by most police forces, the very look of a GSD is usually enough to act as a deterrent but when called into action there are few dogs that can match the German Shepherd as an all rounder.

If you are considering becoming an owner of a GSD then you need to consider the commitment to training in order that you have happy, well behaved German Shepherd dog that you can take out safely in public.

The German Shepherd needs to be well socialised from an early age and needs plenty of exposure to people and other dogs so that they do not develop aggressive tendencies as they mature.

Joining a dog training class from an early age is a good idea and most clubs will accept dogs into the puppy classes from about 4 months onwards. This should be good fun for your puppy and allows him to play and to socialise but it also serves the purpose of teaching him or her what is acceptable and what is not. This will prove invaluable grounding for your German Shepherd training. The earlier you start training and socialisation the better as GSD's often develop a tendency to be aggressive towards other dogs and also towards strangers and they can become very protective towards their owners and property.

Training your German Shepherd should be very much part of everyday life and is should be fun so stick with it because it really will be worth it in the end.  http://www.germanshepherdrescue.co.uk


Skijoring is a fun winter activity to do with your dog!

Training resources www.leerburg.com/obediencetrainingdogs.htm


Here's a great article I thought you might enjoy:


I am your Puppy, and I will love you until the end of the Earth,
but please know a few things about me.

I am a Puppy, this means that my intelligence and capacity for
learning are the same as an 8-month-old child. I am a Puppy; I will
chew EVERYTHING I can get my teeth on. This is how I explore and
learn about the world. Even HUMAN children put things in their
mouths. It's up to you to guide me to what is mine to chew and what
is not.

I am a Puppy; I cannot hold my bladder for longer than 1 - 2 hours.
I cannot "feel" that I need to poop until it is actually beginning
to come out. I cannot vocalize nor tell you that I need to go, and
I cannot have "bladder and bowel control" until 6 - 9 months. Do
not punish me if you have not let me out for 3 hours and I tinkle.
It is your fault. As a Puppy, it is wise to remember that I NEED to
go potty after: Eating, Sleeping, playing, Drinking and around
every 2 - 3 hours in addition. If you want me to sleep through the
night, then do not give me water after 8 p.m. A crate will help me
learn to housebreak easier, and will avoid you being mad at me.

I am a Puppy, accidents WILL happen, please be patient with me! In
time I will learn.

I am a Puppy, I like to play. I will run around, and chase
imaginary monsters, and chase your feet and your toes and 'attack'
you, and chase fuzz balls, other pets, and small kids. It is play;
it's what I do. Do not be mad at me or expect me to be sedate,
mellow and sleep all day. If my high energy level is too much for
you, maybe you could consider an older rescue from a shelter or
Rescue group. My play is beneficial, use your wisdom to guide me in
my play with appropriate toys, and activities like chasing a
rolling ball, or gentle tug games, or plenty of chew toys for me.
If I nip you too hard, talk to me in "dog talk", by giving a loud
YELP, I will usually get the message, as this is how dogs
communicate with one another. If I get too rough, simply ignore me
for a few moments, or put me in my crate with an appropriate chew

I am a Puppy; hopefully you would not yell, hit, strike, kick or
beat a 6-month-old human infant, so please do not do the same to
me. I am delicate, and also very impressionable. If you treat me
harshly now, I will grow up learning to fear being hit, spanked,
kicked or beat. Instead, please guide me with encouragement and
wisdom. For instance, if I am chewing something wrong, say, "No
chew!" and hand me a toy I CAN chew. Better yet, pick up ANYTHING
that you do not want me to get into. I can't tell the difference
between your old sock and your new sock, or an old sneaker and your
$200 Nikes.

I am a Puppy, and I am a creature with feelings and drives much
like your own, but yet also very different. Although I am NOT a
human in a dog suit, neither am I an unfeeling robot who can
instantly obey your every whim. I truly DO want to please you, and
be a part of your family, and your life. You got me (I hope)
because you want a loving partner and companion, so do not relegate
me to the backyard when I get bigger, do not judge me harshly but
instead mold me with gentleness and guidelines and training into
the kind of family member you want me to be here.

I am a Puppy and I am not perfect, and I know you are not perfect
either. I love you anyway. So please, learn all you can about
training, and puppy behaviors and caring for me from your
Veterinarian, books on dog care and even researching on the
computer! Learn about my particular breed and it's
"characteristics", it will give you understanding and insight into
WHY I do all the things I do. Please teach me with love, patience,
the right way to behave and socialize me with training in a puppy
class or obedience class, we will BOTH have a lot of fun together.

I am a Puppy and I want more than anything to love you, to be with
you, and to please you. Won't you please take time to understand
how I work? We are the same you and I, in that we both feel hunger,
pain, thirst, discomfort, fear, but yet we are also very different
and must work to understand one another's language, body signals,
wants and needs. Some day I will be a handsome dog, hopefully one
you can be proud of and one that you will love as much as I love you.

Love, Your Puppy

(Copyright 2000, by J. Ellis - Southern Shadows Rottweilers.)


Do you think you are too busy to train? Well, think again! Here are some ways to incorporate training into your daily routine.

1. If you like to walk or jog, ( you should, it's healthy for you and your dog!) take your dog with you. If your dog gets overly excited when you pick up the leash, wait for him to settle down and sit before snapping that leash on. Only when he is calm and sitting should you snap the leash on! This is teaching sit, self control and that you are in charge. (you can also practise obedience while out on your walk)

2. Before going out the door, put your dog in a sit or down and tell him to wait. Open the door slowly, if you dog gets up, shut the door quickly and put him back in that position. Repeat until he remains in the sit or down while you open the door, then release him. Make sure you are the first to step out side the door. This is teaching sit, down, wait and self control.

3. When you are sitting down for a meal, don't allow your dog to beg. You should place your dog on his dog bed with a treat (hollow toy filled with food, marrow bone, chew hoof) and tell him to stay, or put him in his crate until you are done.  This is teaching self control and "stay".

4. If you like watching TV, during commercial breaks go through some basic commands with you dog.

5. Whenever you play fetch with your dog, ask him to sit or down before you throw the ball. Then ask him to "out" or "give" the ball.

6. Before putting your dogs food down, tell him to sit or down before letting him eat. You can also ask for a good "look".

If you have kids, make sure they understand and are also consistent with your dog's training.

And don't forget the Golden Rule: praise your dog when he is being calm and well behaved!


Training Tips