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Archive for February, 2010

Puppy Training Blaze Week 1

Well, our first full week is over, and I have a 9.5 week old puppy. He is very cuddly and really likes to watch me at all times. I am hopeful for his little obedience career. I am reminded at how many things I have told clients over the years and just how many times I have violated my very sayings, its just hard work to be effective 100% of the time. Here are some key points I a walking away with.

  • Socialization is an all day every day thing. Each day I try to find something new that little Blaze hasn’t seen before and I work hard to make it a positive experience. Its very easy to create fear in a puppy or to make something unpleasant.
  • House training a puppy takes time and patience. Unfortunately Blaze isn’t an out of the box, know how to potty outside puppy – dare i say he is normal? I watch when he drinks and eats, and watch for sniffing. I reward him with food when he potties outside and if he goes inside, I pick him up and carry him out, still rewarding if he goes outside. I crate him when he can’t be watched.
  • Puppies are like kids, the more tired they are, the more hyper they get. He needs to be put to bed when he is wild so he can settle down.
  • Ignore the night time crying. He can hold it.
  • Rotate out the toys, they can become bored of the same thing
  • Invest in deer antlers, they work well with puppies! As do ice cubes.

Next week we will start some real training and puppy kindergarten. I will continue to introduce him to new sights, sounds, smells, textures, things to walk on, things to play with and of course dogs and kids.

Why is my dog scared of the vacuum cleaner

I turned on the vacuum for the first time since we got the new puppy. He ran away from it about as fast as he could. Why is my dog scared of the vacuum cleaner? Well, its a common problem actually and if not introduced the right way can be a life long issue for a dog.

I’m going to start my puppy on a little “vacuum cleaner” program to get him used to it. First I’m going to leave it in the kitchen where he is (when I’m in there) so he can just get used to the sight of it. After a while I will progress to moving it without sound. I may drop some food around to get him more relaxed.

I’m also going to run the vacuum while he eats ( but not near him, probably at a distance ) and over time, bring it closer until he is no longer scared. I can also drop food behind me as I vacuum, encouraging him to follow me rather than to feel chased by it.

Your dog doens’t have to be scared of the vacuum cleaner, you just have to go slow and take it step by step.

Puppy Training – Socialization

I am working on socialization with little Blaze. He is meeting people, kids, hearing new sounds, walking on new textures (gravel, grass, concrete). I hope to get him to the play ground this weekend with moving swings and other fun things. There is a lot of socialization you can do at home. Just find something new and see if your puppy is nervous about it. If he is, its an opportunity to train!

In our first puppy diary – I am showing how I teach Blaze not to be scared of something new. Scroll down to see our little movie debut!

Crying in the Crate

Our new little guy Blaze isn’t as quiet as our Nitro was. My husband says its punishment for bragging so much about how great Nitro was as a baby. Blaze, aka squealer, doesn’t seem to enjoy his crate. He does a lot of crying when we put him in his crate. Here are some things that we are doing to try to help.

We are putting little Blaze in the crate with a treat for going in when he is tired. This will help him learn its his sleeping place. When he cries we are ignoring him. When he is quiet thats when we will allow him to come out. I’m also working on getting him on a schedule so he is used to the amount of crating he will have to live through in his puppy hood. Hopefully by 2 years we can wean him off the crate.

One of our crates is in the family room which is where we hang out when we are home, so he is close by. It helps to drop in a reward if they are quiet. We also try to feed him some in his crate. This morning, he has cried off and on for an hour, hopefully this will get better over time!

If your puppy is crying in the crate, the number one rule is to never let them out when they are doing it! That will make them believe that they can cry to get out. Wait until they are quiet and then take them out.

Happy Puppy Training :)

House Training Schedule

Check out the House Training App

We brought home our new puppy Blaze this weekend. He is an 8 week old labrador retriever. Every puppy is so different and teaches you new things. Little Blaze loves to drink water, and will drink non stop. Here is how today is going, and what type of house training schedule I am going to keep.

Morning 1 – I got up, filled up a bowl of water and went about my morning making breakfast and lunches for the kids. He went out and pottied, lots of praise. He came in and went #2 on the floor (I saw him sniffing and was trying to locate my jacket because of the rain). That was my fault I didn’t move fast enough. We went out anyway and he went potty again, came in and had 3 accidents back to back. No sniffing this time, just peeing on the floor. Luckily we keep a swiffer wet jet in the kitchen to clean up the mess quickly.

I decided this wasn’t a good pattern. Now I am limiting how much water I put down. Here is our new schedule

Puppy Crate Time
Comes out of the crate – potty
If he pees he gets to play in the kitchen with 1 cup of water available in the bowl. (this is more than he needs but its always better too offer more than less!)
He can play for 20 minutes, we go back out to potty.
If he pees, he gets to stay out, if not, he goes in the crate.

We’ll see how this goes. A few tips on a house training schedule, see how long between potty trips you can go – some puppies can do an hour, and some only 15 minutes. The goal the first week home is to get more peeing outside than inside. Expect them to do a poop sometime after eating (1-3 hours).