Category Archives: dog behavior

5 Tips for Teaching a Dog Impulse Control

impulse marilynBy Langley Cornwell

Dogs are like any other living animals. When their actions result in rewards, they will continue the actions. For example, if your dog gets praise, encouragement and head pats when he jumps on you or performs any other undesirable action, he will continue to do so. He thinks your positive reaction indicates that you approve of his bad behavior. On the other hand, when a dog gets rewarded for good behaviors, like sitting calmly when directed to do so, you can expect that behavior to continue as well. Teaching a dog about impulse control can take less time that you might imagine, when you use the proper tools and methods.

Assume a Position

Whether you want your dog to lie down on his mat during dinner time or you want him to sit calmly at the door before being let out, you need to first teach him how to be still. To do this, you’ll need some high quality treats like CANIDAE Grain Free PURE, a spot to work with your dog, a visual and vocal command, and a position to teach.

Take your dog to the area where you will be working. Tell your dog to sit, stay or whatever command you decide on. Use a hand motion picked just for this command, and use the hand motion and voice command at the same time. The moment your dog is in the position that you desire, reward him or her with a treat. Remember that consistency is vital.

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The Physics of a Wet Dog Shake

wet dog shake oscarBy Linda Cole

Like most canines, my dogs aren’t big fans of baths. However, it isn’t difficult to get them in the mood with a generous amount of tasty CANIDAE treats as a reward. My biggest challenge is avoiding flying water that leaves me wetter than the dog. It only takes a few seconds for a wet dog to shake off 70% of the water in his coat – 4 seconds to be exact. Nature provided an effective way for furry animals to quickly dry off, but it is physics that explains the mechanics of a wet dog shake.

Evolution is a process of natural selection that, over time, made subtle changes to increase the survival of mammals, insects, and other creatures. Somewhere in the process, furry animals evolved to use shaking as a means of quickly drying their coat. Having the ability to quickly shake off water is a survival technique used by furry mammals from the smallest mouse, to dogs and large predators like bears to help ward off hypothermia. A wet coat loses its ability to insulate by trapping warm air next to the skin. Shaking is not only an effective way of dispelling water, it also uses less energy than waiting for the sun to evaporate all of the water in a coat. A 60 pound dog, for example, would have to use up to 20% of his caloric intake to maintain his body heat while air drying; this isn’t a practical solution for a wet, furry animal, especially in a cold environment.

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5 Ways Dogs Express Joy

joy sheilaBy Laurie Darroch

Dogs are very open with their feelings and moods, including the way they express joy. Their reactions are pure, honest and often immediate. A dog may show sheer happiness with their body or their actions, but there is no mistaking an expression of joy when a dog lets it out.

Tails

Although the language of tails is more complex than simply wagging for happiness, an extremely happy dog seems to be barely able to control the expression of joy with a wildly wagging tail. Not only does the dog’s tail wag, their whole back side and even their entire body can wiggle in joy. A dog with a long and strong tail can whip it wildly back and forth in excitement, so much so that you can actually hear it as it moves.

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Which Dog Breeds are the Friendliest?

friendly dogs adamBy Linda Cole

Dog owners have their reasons for why they picked a particular breed to bring into their home. Most dogs are friendly when they’re properly socialized to people and other animals, but there are some  breeds that are considered the friendliest. Here are six of them.

The Irish Setter is a chestnut red hunting dog that was used to “set” the game for his owner. He was originally red and white with shorter legs which allowed him to crouch down low when he found a bird and wait for his owner to throw a net over both of them. Through selective breeding, the white was bred completely out of the breed as were his shorter legs. These dogs are extremely fast with a good nose to locate birds. Used to point out and then retrieve birds, the Irish Setter is also adept at tracking, agility, obedience and as a watchdog. These dogs make great family pets and are smart, high spirited, loving and get along well with other pets and kids.

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How Dogs Walk Their Humans

dog walk takashiBy Laurie Darroch

Dogs love going for a walk with their human companions. Who is really walking who, though? We often delude ourselves into thinking we are in charge. It may be more a case of how dogs walk their humans than vice versa. No matter how well trained your dog is or how well they follow your lead, in the end they still get their way, whether by reward or the basic fact that they are on a walk with their human companion. The next time you head out for a walk, think about it from your dog’s point of view.

Anticipation

Say the word “walk” and chances are your dog has learned to associate that particular word with the very fun activity of going exploring outside. Their ears lift, their tail wags and they may jump around in anticipation, barely able to sit still long enough to get the leash put on. Their excitement inevitably makes you smile and be happy to go with them. See – they just rewarded you. Now who is training who, you say? “Very good!”

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Decoding a Dog’s Sense of Smell

dog decode smell padBy Langley Cornwell

Dogs and humans share three senses—hearing, smelling and seeing—but we rely on them in different ways, or rather, with different levels of dependence. For the majority of humans, hearing is their primary sense followed by seeing and lastly, smelling. There are some humans who are more visually focused and take in and process visual information before auditory information but as a general rule, the order of sensory dependence is hearing, seeing and then smelling.

A dog, on the other hand, primarily relies on his sense of smell. For our canine friends, the order of sensory dependence is smelling, seeing and then hearing. Amazingly, our dogs receive and understand as much information via smelling as we do via sight!

A dog’s reliance on the nose starts at a young age. When puppies are born, their eyes are closed and their ears are stopped up. Even so, they are born with heat sensors in their noses which help them locate their mother in order to nurse. These heat sensors fade with time, and fully adult dogs no longer have this ability.

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