Archives for April, 2009

Understanding the Value of Canine Clicker Training

By Cary Benjamin

Training a canine can sometimes prove to be a difficult task. It takes a large commitment of time and energy from both the owner and the dog. Because of this, many dogs are not properly trained, and can suffer because of it. Some dogs can be chastised for being “dumb,” or “slow learners.” The truth is, all dogs have a great capacity to learn, perhaps larger than most dog owners ever give them credit for.

For the dog owners out there willing to put in the time required to maximizing their dog’s potential, but do not know how, it might be easier than ever previously thought.

There is no replacement for consistency and patience, and those seeking the quick remedy may never find it. Owners who swear they have tried everything in a quest to train their canine, to no avail, should first evaluate their training techniques before deciding to scrap them all together. Communication is key in training, but many dog owners do not fully understand what that means.

Dogs do not speak English. With this being said, do not expect a canine to understand a command just because it is verbalized. This is perhaps the biggest mistake most owners make when attempting to train their canine. A word or command will not elicit the proper response from the dog or puppy without first showing them the proper response. An action must come before the verbal command for the response.

Also, sometimes the owner’s commands are not consistent in their delivery or tone. This can also prove to be a detriment to the training process. For those who understand how this can make training difficult, but do not know where to go from there, clicker training is perhaps the best step to take.

Discover more useful tips on how to quickly train your dog to listen to anything you say, by Clicking Here => Dog Training.

If you have 15 minutes, I guarantee you’ll end all of your dog’s worst behavior problems at


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Apr 30, 2009 | 0 | Training

Senior Pugs Are Special! Caring For Your Older Pug Can Be a Heartwarming Experience

By J M Conner

Pugs make adorable pets. They are loyal, lovable and are the perfect companion. But, just like their owner, they age and somewhere along the line every Pug owner faces the reality: their Pug has become a Senior Citizen. In this disposable society, where everything that becomes slightly worn or dated, it’s sad to think that aging can become such a liability. For humans there are nursing homes but, for Pugs, who have gotten up in years, they only have the love of their owner to rely on.

It’s hard to watch your little friend age. If you got your Pug when he was a puppy, it may especially sad to watch him slow up and have difficulties seeing or hearing. But there are three things to be aware of that will make your Pug’s golden years more comfortable.

The first thing to be aware of is that your Pug will need to take it a little easier. As your Pug ages be aware that his “senior years” will start when he is about seven. This means that the walks he used to take with you take a little bit more effort than it used to. Be aware of the pace that you take your walk and consider shortening the path that you take. Three shorter walks will be less stressful for your senior Pug and may actually be more beneficial for him. Arthritis can be a factor in an older dog and you should consult your veterinarian about the proper care for this condition if your little friend seems to be in any pain or discomfort during the walk.

The second bit of advice is related to one of the health problems that plague all Pugs: obesity. This little breed of dog loves to eat. It’s rather comical to watch a Pug go into their act of starvation in the hopes of getting a morsel of food. No matter what the age of your Pug they never seem to lose their appetite. But, be aware that, as their activity level decreases, the amount of food that they consume must also be reduced. This is especially true with their treats. One of the compromises that we have found to be very successful is baby carrots. Our Pug loves these as a treat. We encourage you to consult your vet but, from what we have heard, these are a very healthy alternative if given in moderation. Try it out with your Pug. We were absolutely amazed at how much they love this treat. Maybe it’s the crunch that they like but it certainly makes for a healthy treat.

The third thing to be aware of is an increased sensitivity to the cold. An older Pug can get a chill more easily and seems to really like a warm area. Consider moving his sleeping area closer to a heater. It will make him much more comfortable.

Yes, it is hard to watch your faithful companion age but it’s also a time when you can pay back all of the years of affection that he has given you. A Pug seems to know that you’re taking extra good care of him and it isn’t unusual to see the strong bond between Pug and owner get even stronger during the golden years. It’s a time to be thankful for all the love your Pug has shown you and to make his senior years as comfortable as possible.


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Apr 29, 2009 | 1 | Dog breed information

Bichon Frise Training – 4 Important Breed Characteristics

By Jack Ryan

Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise is a breed that is sweet tempered, merry, and eager, always wanting to please his owners and family. He or she is a dog that loves to spend time with his family and loves interaction with humans and other animals.

The Bichon is fine for novice dog owners as well as more experienced ones, and will fare well around considerate children. Housebreaking the Bichon Frise can be a difficult task, and some can be quite noisy with their high pitched barks. All in all, the Bichon Frise is a wonderful little dog with a cheerful outlook, bags of enthusiasm, a sociable personality, and is perfect as a family pet or companion dog.


Puppies sometimes have beige to apricot markings, but these fade over time. They commonly have buff, apricot or cream color on their ears or head that will almost always fade to complete white. Puppies must be accustomed to brushing at an early age, a process that requires much patience and gentle handling to make them ready for a new loving home.


The Bichon Frise is a very intelligent dog and can be trained to do tricks. They are slow to mature and males are generally slightly easier to train than females. The breed is easy to train using standard obedience commands. Training begins at birth and ongoing consultation is available to all breed owners at the local obedience school or vet. The Bichon works well with food treats along with the leash and collar. Training must be gentle and firm, with no harsh corrections or scolding.


Bichons are notoriously smart and easy to train, making them a favorite for circus acts. My bichon have been part of my life since 1999. On the downside, bichons are prone to liver shunts. They weigh about 10 to 18 pounds, depending on size and are classified under four categories: the Havanese, Bolognese, Maltaise, and Tenerife, from which the Bichon Frise ultimately descended.

Bichons require a moderate amount of exercise, including a daily walk, and make perfect indoor dogs. Bichons should be between 9 1/2 to 11 1/2 inches tall at the withers. They were the popular choice of dog that Italian sailors used for bartering during medieval times and were the preferred choice for bartering because they were very friendly and made good traveling companions.


The Bichon Frise is a breed that is sweet tempered, merry, and eager, always wanting to please his owners and family. They love to spend time with their family and loves interaction with humans and other animals.

The Bichon Frise is a cute little “puffy” dog. This is a small but sturdy dog who can be taken on family trips, and will be sad if you leave him at home. He is a good family dog and will love everyone in his “pack.

Jack Ryan is an avid Bichon Frise lover and long time owner. He has trained many dogs and believes in supporting the breed by ensuring the future owners are well informed.

He offers more free information at

Bishon Frise Training


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Apr 28, 2009 | 0 | Dog breed information

Can Your Dog Get Hives?

By Frank Will

Can your dog get hives? The answer is yes. Although it is not as common as other types of skin conditions your dog may face, it can certainly be a problem and something all owners should be aware of.

There are basically two different forms of hives in dogs; Urticaria, which is an outbreak on their body of swollen bumps, patches, or welts that will appear very suddenly, or Angioedema, which is similar except the swelling happens beneath the skin, not on the skin.

Angioedema is often referred to as swollen face instead of hives, but it is basically the same thing.
Both kinds of hives will be the result, just like in humans, of an allergic reaction to something such as certain allergens, but it could be any number of things that can be very difficult to actually pinpoint.

Chemicals that you might use in or around your yard could be causing these conditions as well as rubbing against grass, weeds, or other types of pollen carriers. Food allergies can also be a major cause of hives.

All dogs can get hives, although there are some breeds, simply because of their skin sensitivities, that are more prone such as Golden Retrievers, Labradors, Dalmatians, and Lhasa Apsos.

From first hand experience, I have had 3 Dalmatians now, all three had hives, and my current one is 15 years old, and still occasionally gets hives and we still do not know what actually cause it.

Hives will normally cause a severe itching in your dog, but they can also sting or actually burn your dog.

They will vary in size from ranging from about the size of a penny, to severe cases where they can be as large as a small salad bowel. If they join together, they are than referred to as plaques.

The severity of hives will depend on where they are located. Normally they will appear on your dog’s body mass such as their back or bellies, but can also develop on their face and or lips. In the more severe forms of hives, they will appear on their tongues, throat, or ears. Hives on their throat or tongue may pose more of a threat to your dog.

Most cases of hives are not severe, and will generally dissipate within a day or two. However, there are some exceptions.

Angioedema, or swollen face, could be a much more serious threat to your canine friend. With this condition, your pets face will swell, especially around the muzzle and the eyes. If the swelling is severe enough, your dog will not be able to see as they can not open their eyes.

In most cases of Angioedema, the swelling will develop very quickly, which is good news and bad news. They good news is that it will give you some reference of time frame of where your pet was and what possibly could have set off this allergic reaction.

The bad news is that it is most definitely a more serious situation. If it does develop in your pets tongue and throat, it may make it very difficult for them to breath. Very severe cases of this condition are referred to as anaphylaxis.

Anaphylaxis is a condition that develops very rapidly and is a much more serious set of reactions in that it affects several different parts of the body at the same time, which is now life threatening. This condition can and has been fatal for dogs, and if you suspect this condition has affected your pet, you need to seek immediate medical attention from your veterinarian.

Both of these conditions are the result of reactions in your pet’s bodies that are triggered by antibodies that their immune system has produced, and causes inflammatory cells to release substances that cause the allergic reaction.

These reactions could also be the result of a recent vaccination your dog has received. Many types of vaccinations will contain antibiotics as preservatives, which triggers the reaction. Both forms of hives are treated generally by antihistamines quite successfully, but in severe cases they will be treated with steroids.

Some cases of hives can be very easy for owners to miss, or may remain hidden under their coats, and can also be mistaken as flea bites.

Symptoms to watch for in hives will be a sudden and excessive scratching, patches of fur that seem to be raised, as well as sudden bald patches that are scaling or look like a rash. In some cases, your pet may actually develop what looks like dandruff, but it is actually very dry skin.

If your pet develops yellow coloring on their lips, abdomen, or rectal areas, it may be the more severe form developing.

There have been several reported cases in chronic or severe hives, where Vitamin B12 supplements and or injections has reduced both the severity and the frequency of these attacks.

Hives, either the Urticaria form or the Angioedema form, is something that all dog owners should be very aware of and watch for at all times, as no one actually knows for sure what can set them off in your canine friend.

I am an avid lover of pets and my wife and I have had several pets throughout our years. We are especially fond of dogs, and we have a 12 year old Dalmatian (our 3rd) and a “mutt” that we rescued when someone threw him away to die in a vacant field.

He found us, nearly starved to death, and weighed about 2 pounds.

After severe bouts of mange and severe dehydration, and over 1,000.00 in veterinarian bills, we saved the little guys life, and he is one of the best, if not the best, dogs we have ever had and today is a muscular, fit, and firm 70 pound best friend.

After finishing my MBA, which at middle age was not easy, I decided to keep the research work ethics that I acquired, and devote about two hours each night in understanding the health benefits of supplementation for both humans and pets and how they might strengthen our, as well as our pets, immune system in a pre-emptive approach to health rather than a reactionary approach.

Both of my daughters are avid cat lovers, and asked me to help them with health concerns and challenges with their cats.

I am not a veterinarian nor claim to be, just a lover of pets that loves to research and pass on some knowledge that might be helpful, or at least stimulating to the thought process.

Several of the articles that I have written can be found on my website;
Liquid Vitamnis & Minerals for Humans & Pets


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Apr 27, 2009 | 1 | Dog health

Puppy Behavior 16 – 19 Weeks Old

By Tobias Charles

There are many changes that a puppy may go through during puppy development. In this article we will list and describe some of the changes in your puppy’s behavior from 16 weeks up to the age of 19 weeks.

At this point during puppy development you need to be vigilant and remember that this is the point where he is in effect an angry teenager. You may have thought that you have witnessed all the possible behavior problems in the earlier stages of your puppy’s life, but if you do not keep your puppy under strict supervision you may start to see other problems manifesting.

Puppy Behavior – 16 – 19 weeks

A step by step Guide of What you Should Expect

  • Your puppy may show different sides to his character. He maybe sweet and well behaved one minute and then the next minute he maybe quite ignorant and ignore your training commands
  • Your puppy is showing the common characteristics of a teenager as he believes that he is all grown up and an adult – but in fact he is still only a baby.
  • You may see your puppy exhibiting nervous behavior, aggression and dominance issues.
  • Depending on your breed of dog – the genetic predisposition may start to show through – do some research on the breed that you have.
  • Keep an eye on any fearful behavior. You may see your puppy running away from what he perceives as frightening. Of course you should protect him from any actual dangers – but don’t be over protective. If you are constantly picking him up – he will start to believe that he has a reason to be scared – by picking your puppy up and coddling him you are reinforcing his negative response.
  • Although your puppy is acting like a teenager he will also start to bond with you and other members of the family.
  • Your puppy may start to chew items around the House – he is basically challenging any authority by doing this.
  • Expect your puppy’ s behavior to really start testing you. You may start to see house training issues with your puppy having accidents around the House.
  • Watch out for anxiety based problems – barking, separation anxiety and barking can appear at this stage in your puppy;s life.
  • You may even see food aggression. If you have a well trained puppy – you should be able to pick up your puppy’s food, sleep in his bedding and anything that proves your standing within the pack without your puppy showing any aggression.
  • Continue to be consistent in every aspect of your training program.
  • You should start training your puppy basic commands – you will need to start letting him off the leash soon.
  • Some people feel that puppy training classes is admitting failure. This is far from the truth as they are a great way to ask other owners questions, get access to a dog trainer, and socialize your puppy with other dogs of varying breeds, genders and sizes.
  • Your puppy should be wormed again during this period,
  • It is important that your puppy is also checked for fleas.
  • Expect some of your puppy’s teeth to fallout – don’t panic they are the deciduous teeth and will soon be replaced by adult teeth.

Puppy Behavior 16 – 19 weeks – Watch out for Separation Anxiety or Over Attachment.

  • It is important that you train your puppy to get used to you not being around – this will help with any separation anxiety problems or over attachment – Start by leaving your puppy on his own for 15 minutes or even ignore him.
  • Get your puppy used to being left on his own for periods of time (put him in his crate though.)
  • It is important that your puppy doesn’t associate you leaving the House i.e. when you go to work with you always being away from the House for long periods.
  • Leave the House for periodic moments throughout the day – so you puppy doesn’t start to associate you leaving the House with him being left on his own for long periods.
  • Don’t make a big deal about leaving the House i.e. don’t get him really excited or jangle the car keys. Make it matter of fact and just leave.

Hope you enjoyed this quick introduction to this important stage in puppy behavior and development. In the next article we will focus on the developmental stage between 20 -24 weeks.

Tobias Charles writes on all aspects of dog obedience training and puppy training. For more information on the developmental stages in a puppy’s life – checkout our complete week by week puppy training tips age guide.

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Apr 26, 2009 | 0 | dog behavior, Puppies, Training

Clipping Your Pet’s Coat the Easy Way

By Bobbi Hightower

Keeping your pet’s coat neat, trimmed and groomed, yourself, is easy when you have the right kind of tools.

There are several advantages to doing it yourself.  Of course, there is the money savings, but the savings on the wear and tear on your pet’s emotions is well worth it.  Being in familiar surroundings, with someone he knows, trusts and loves giving him special attention, can greatly strengthen your bond.

You want to make sure to give your pet a good brushing before you begin clipping.

If he has never been exposed to the clippers before give him some time to get used to the buzzing sound of the tool.  Reassure your pet by gently petting him and speaking in a calm, soothing voice.  You can also try giving him a treat to reward him for staying calm.

If clipping your pet’s coat is a new experience for you, be aware that there is an advantage to using clippers that have been specifically designed for use on animals. These tools are designed to be safe, fast and easy to use. This means you’ll be more accurate and less likely to make a mistake.

If and when the time comes that a visit to the groomer becomes necessary, your pet will experience much less stress since they have already become familiar with how these tools sound and feel.

When you’re shopping for clipper, keep in mind that all animal coats are not the are not the same.  Make sure you buy a tool that will work the best with the needs of your pet’s particular coat.

Visit my web site to get more details that will help you keep your pet groomed, healthy and happy.

The article was written by life-long, pet advocate, Bobbi Hightower, who points out, “The bond between you and your pet is special. Strengthen that bond by keeping your pet healthy and happy. Regular pet grooming is a special way to show your love and care for your animal. Make this a positive experience by having the best pet grooming supplies on hand. Visit Best Pet Grooming Supplies to learn more.

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Apr 25, 2009 | 0 | Dog grooming


Apologies to regular visiotrs – I have been chaning web hosts sop have been off line during the process and very much missing it.



Apr 24, 2009 | 0 | Uncategorized

Shitzu Dog – Know What to Expect

By Sherry L Harris

When it comes to wanting to fall in love with one of the smallest and cutest dogs out there, there should be no problem when it comes to the Shitzu dog. The appearance of this breed is enough to make any heart melt. Being only about nine inches in height when full grown, this dog is surely own that can fit within any size home or apartment which makes it a great choice for those without a lot of room to roam. The colors found within this breed are usually red, tan, black, or white mixed with another color.

The Shitzu dog is not one to get if you are not someone that is going to enjoy grooming the dog on a regular basis. Because the long hair is easily tangled, it is suggested to brush out the hair on a daily basis. A professional grooming should be sought out about every six weeks or so just to make sure that your dog is always looking his or her best. Not only does this breed require a lot of your attention, it also requires a lot of your love and affection in order to remain happy and peaceful in your home.

This cheerful and social dog is one that loves attention no matter who it is coming from. While the Shitzu dog is not prone to a lot of barking, they are dogs that show a lot of stubbornness. They really do not like learning a lot of tricks but they can be trained with patience as they will take a little longer to master tricks. This has nothing to do with their ability to learn but rather their disinterest in doing so. Another great thing about the personality of this breed is that since they love company, they do well with children and other pets.

Besides the cuteness that this dog has and their social ability, the Shitzu dog is also known for barely shedding any hair. And since the dander is so little, those who find that they have allergies to dogs will find this breed to be a perfect fit. No longer do you have to avoid the idea of owning a dog because of your allergies. If you are ready to care and love a dog that will give you as much love back then this is the breed for you. Whether you have a house or a small apartment, the Shitzu will fit in.

Sherry Harris is the author of a wide range of dog topics including, but not limited to: puppy training, dog grooming, pet travel, pet insurance, dog training, pet food, house training, dog breeds and dog allergies. For hundreds more free dog articles visit Hope you enjoyed the article topic Shitzu Dog. We are online 24/7, so come visit us at your convenience!


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Apr 14, 2009 | 0 | Dog breed information

Dogs For Kids – Picking the Right Breed

By Sherry L Harris

When you are looking for the perfect pet for your kids, it is important to keep in mind that not all dogs are great for children. There are various breeds out there that do not like or put up with the roughness or the quick movement of children. If you bring a dog into your home that is uncomfortable around children then you may very well be putting your child at risk of being hurt. Make sure that you are really looking around at your different options to make sure that you are selecting from dogs for kids.

If you are not all that sure on which particular breed would be the best for your kids then you are going to have to do a little research. The age of your children will pay a big role in this as well as some dogs for kids are okay for older kids, but not around babies. You will also want to take into consideration how rough you think your kids might get with the dog. Selecting a dog that can put up with some horse play without snapping at the kid is your best bet.

Once you find a list of dogs for kids that would work well for you, you can then look through their various other habits and personality traits in order to pick which would be the best one. There are dogs of various sizes, colors, and personality types to pick from that would work with kids. You should have no problem finding something that will work for you, whether you are looking more towards a small dog or a large dog. You will want to keep in mind that just because a dog is cute and small, it does not mean that it will do well with children.

Talking with an experienced dog trainer is a great way of getting some inside tips as to what are good dogs for kids and what breeds are not. By getting that expert advice, you will also be able to learn a few tips or tricks for when you finally bring the new dog home. Being as prepared as possible is the best thing to do when you are looking at bringing a new dog into a house with children and possibly other pets. After you finally have your dog home, you will be glad you took those extra steps in the decision process.

Sherry Harris is the author of a wide range of dog topics including, but not limited to: puppy training, dog grooming, pet travel, pet insurance, dog training, pet food, house training, dog breeds and dog allergies. For hundreds more free dog articles visit Hope you enjoyed the article topic Dogs for Kids. We are online 24/7, so come visit us at your convenience!

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Apr 13, 2009 | 0 | Choosing your dog, Dog breed information

Changing Dog Aggression – Is it Possible?

By Jim Burwell

When you are the owner of a dog that often shows aggression whether to other dogs or people, finding the best information on how to remedy this can be difficult and confusing.  There is so much information out there on dog aggression,  much of it by hobby trainers.  The information could even be harmful.

The best time to start training your dog is when he is still a puppy.  This allows you time to socialize your puppy to other dogs, people and children so that as the puppy gets older starting at about 4 to 5 months, the chance of fear being associated with these things is greatly diminished or not a problem at all.  Fear can be the basis for dog aggression.

Working with an aggressive dog can be a bit frightening to the owner.  If this is the case, you may want to consider getting some help by using a trainer who understands positive behavior modification and has worked with aggressive (reactive) dogs.  If the aggression is not severe, you may be able to change this yourself with consistency and patience.

The first step you should take when you begin the process of eliminating the dog’s aggression problem is prevention.  What do I mean by this?  As you are beginning to work on your dog’s behavior, don’t put him in situations or settings he is not used to.  Prevent problems from occurring as you begin to rehabilitate your dog.  This is a slow process.

You must learn how to re-direct the behaviors of your dog.  If you place him in areas where he will become aggressive before you have the understanding and the handling skills of how to re-direct those behaviors, he has the chance to once again display the bad behavior.  You want to eliminate this, not give him even more opportunities to act out his aggressions. If you do this, you have set your dog up to fail.

The next area you want to approach is obedience.  Teach your dog to “sit” first.  You can progress to down, stay, off and all the other commands once you are comfortable that he has the first command down.  By teaching your dog obedience, you will find that you feel more comfortable in the leadership role.  You dog will also begin looking at you in a different light and will begin to believe that you can handle any situation, so he doesn’t need to.

Teaching your dog to obey simple commands will go a long way in changing the aggressive behavior.  Obedience commands give you appropriate actions for your dog to do instead of aggressing.  This is called re-directing.  Give your dog the opportunity to do an appropriate action and praise him instead of allowing him to fail.

This is the point where you may want to join a class that involves people who have dogs with aggression problems.  It isn’t likely that a friend will let you use their dog to see if your dog is still aggressive after you have worked on your dog.  A class specifically for aggressive dogs, with experienced trainers lessens everyone’s fear and you will have assistance in helping your dog not to aggress.  It will also teach you the appropriate handling skills you will need to help your dog be successful.

Teach your dog desired behavior and you may soon find that he loses much of aggression he had before.

Be as comfortable with the trainer of your dog, as you are the teacher of your children, and remember, “Opportunity Barks”

Need more help with your dog’s behavior. Visit our behavior page and sign up for current solutions that work, based on my 25 years of positive dog training.

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Apr 12, 2009 | 0 | dog behavior, Training