Ways to Housebreak a Puppy

Are you interested in knowing how to housebreak a puppy? If so, you have come to the right place! Here, we’ll let you in on some of the most important steps to keep your puppy from having an accident inside your home.

Step One:  For housebreaking includes knowing your pup’s routines and cues. Most pooches need to use the bathroom 15 minutes after they eat. Therefore, after feeding him/her, it’s best to take him outside to do his business. You also should know some cues. Pups often will walk around or sniff in corners before they need to go. As you witness this type of behavior, be certain that you take him outside.

Step Two: Includes taking your pup outside the home, according to his routine. As he shows his cues and does his business, praise him. You also can provide a treat in order for him to continuously poop repeatedly at the same time.

As you learn how to potty train a puppy, you must shout ‘No!’ if you see him pooping inside the house. Afterwards, take him outside and allow him to poop. However, make certain not to hit your pet if you witness him go inside the home. Hitting your pet never will do any good. Rather, ignore your pet and let him recognize for himself that going inside the home isn’t a good thing to do.

He also should be inside a crate as you leave your home. It’s the ideal method of housebreaking a puppy. Many pups don’t want to remain inside an area filled with their own mess. Often, pups will merely attempt to control their poop and then wait for their owners to take them outside of the crate.

It is also possible to use a scented pad or paper to control his bathroom habits. If you witness your pooch trying to go to the bathroom, grab him and put him where the paper is and allow him to poop there. Continually do this until he finally knows that there’s an ideal place to go to the bathroom inside your home.

These conclude the steps on how to potty train a puppy. Make certain to be patient while in the training phase. Puppies aren’t that simple to train as compared with adult dogs. But, they are able to learn new things, so long as you keep training them. The more time spent training, the better results you’ll see in your home.

Tips on housebreaking a puppy during the winter

Housebreaking pups during the winter is similar to training during better weather-friendly times of year with the exception of a few important areas.

First, you should never leave him alone outside in the winter weather. As you let him outside to relieve himself, make certain to be there with him until he’s prepared to return inside.

Second, pups are a lot more sensitive to harsh and cold weather conditions. Never leave him out in cold weather for lengthy spans of time. While potty training a pooch in the winter, it’s critical that you know that they’re more vulnerable to frostbite and hypothermia.

Hypothermia includes a condition of too little warmth. A pup’s body temperature will fall too low to keep him warm. If you witness him beginning to shiver, immediately take him inside and warm him up.

Frostbite includes tissue damage to the skin caused by cold temperatures. You’ll see damaged skin turn white or pale. The most susceptible areas are the webbing between the toes, the ears, and potentially the tail region.

Add to the list! If you have a puppy, what methods have you used to get him/her to become potty trained? Share in the comments section!

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Deck the Halls with Safety: Pet-Proofing Tips

Dog and cat lies near the Christmas tree

Thanksgiving is over, and the hustle and bustle of Christmas is full-on. During this season of holiday festivities, any experienced pet owner can appreciate how important it is to pet-proof your Christmas tree and other indoor and outdoor decorations. December brings cooler temperatures and beautifully decorated homes—and dangers for Fido!

One of the first signs that Christmas is coming is the tradition of decking the halls with boughs of holly and such. It is important to remember that some of the trappings of Christmas can cause your pet harm, so it’s up to you to take adequate pet-proofing precautions.

Pets instinctively want to explore and taste all these new bobbles and bits of trimmings that seem to have invaded their home.

And perspective changes everything, so physically get down to your pet’s view level and look around—see things from your pet’s perspective. You will get a better idea of how your pet views all these new items and the upcoming exploration-of-every-single-item-waiting-to-get-pet-approved.

Pet-Proofing Christmas Plants

Whether your Christmas plants are placed indoors or outdoors, some plants require precautions be taken so that pets are not harmed.

For cats, most types of lilies are quite deadly. In certain lilies’ species, for example, a single leaf or a trace of pollen can result in sudden kidney failure.

The popular Christmas cactus, which blooms in December, and festive holly (English) are known for causing significant damage to the intestinal tract and the stomachs of both cats and dogs. While not fatal to Fido, these plants should be placed out of reach of your pet. Should your pet consume even small amounts of either plant, call a veterinarian immediately.

An urban legend is that both mistletoe and poinsettias are highly toxic to pets. Not true. They will, however, cause minor discomfort. The tiny crystals on poinsettias can cause irritation to pets’ mouths or skin, but fatal poisoning is extremely rare. And while European mistletoe is highly toxic, American mistletoe is likely only to cause minor stomach upset.

Pet-Proofing the Christmas Tree

Christmas tree ornaments and decorations provide irresistible temptations to your pets. The blinking lights, shiny tinsel, and dangling ornaments bring out the curiosity in all pets.

Any cherished or heirloom ornaments should always be placed in the top half of the tree where they will be safe from Fido’s wagging tail and Fifi’s batting paws.

You may want to re-think the shiny tinsel and skip it altogether. Dogs and cats both love to eat it! While not poisonous, they can get tied up in your pet’s stomach and cause serious problems. Do not attempt to pull out tinsel or ribbon from either end of your pet as serious cuts can occur. Contact your veterinarian, as the only treatment is surgery.

If you have a live Christmas tree, be sure your pets don’t drink the water especially if you have used additives to keep the tree alive longer.

And don’t forget about those beautifully wrapped presents. As curious animals, both dogs and cats can wreak havoc on them overnight, leaving everything wet with slobber.

We all know how great a dog’s sense of smell is. Know that your dog can smell food and candy through wrapping paper, so never tempt your dog by placing these within reach of Fido.  Most types of Christmas foods are dangerous to your pet.

From the raisins and currants to the alcohol soaking, fruitcakes and other traditional holiday cakes, cookies and breads are highly problematic to pets. Pets absorb alcohol into the bloodstream rapidly, which can cause drops in blood pressure, blood sugar and body temperature.

Ideal Pet-Proofing Tool

You can always play it safe by screening off decorated areas or Christmas trees with a pet gate. There are many types that will protect your tree while also looking stylish and decorative. As an added bonus, a good pet gate also keeps toddlers a safe distance away from these same dangers.

For more information on how a pet gate works, please visit our Learning Center.

It only takes a short time to walk through your home and yard and pet-proof your pets’ Christmas.

Let us know if you have a pet-proofing tip to share. Pet Super Store wants to hear about your pet-proofing ideas!

Dog Parks: What to Know Before You Go

dogparksWhen a pooch is looking to get out of the house and off the leash, dog parks can be a great place to both socialize and burn off some extra energy. At the same time, dog parks can be emotionally scarring and physically dangerous if you don’t approach the encounter with awareness and care. To ensure that your dog has a positive dog park experience, consider the following tips:

1) Make Sure Your Dog is Ready: Your dog will need to be up to date on all vaccines and have a current license to enter a park, but just as importantly, they need good manners.

Make sure that you’re aware of how your dog reacts to other dogs. Dog parks are not the place to work on socialization. Your dog should also be able to consistently respond to you as a handler, being able to “sit,” “come,” and “leave it” on command. Mastery of the basic obedience commands will help you keep your dog and other dogs safe in compromising interactions.

2) Always Visit the Park First on Your Own: Before you take your dog to any dog park, you should visit on your own. Doing so allows you the opportunity to gauge if the park would be a good fit for your dog. Check out the facility, the procedure for entering and leaving, park rules, and the general vibe of the park.

If you have a small breed dog, you will want to check and see if the park has separate areas for large and small breed dogs. These separate areas can help ensure that your small dog doesn’t get mistaken for prey by a larger dog.

After you’re comfortable with the park, try to plan your dog’s first visit during off-peak hours, such as during weekday work hours or early on a Sunday morning. Visiting during a less busy time can help your dog become familiar with the surroundings and the idea of the dog park without being overwhelmed by a great number of dogs.

3) Keep Your Eyes on Your Dog at All Times: Dog parks are meant for dogs to interact and relax, not owner socialization. While it can be tempting to get caught up in a good conversation while your dog plays, you need to have your eyes on your dog at all times. Be aware of the other dogs who are both present and entering the park. If you notice other dogs getting out of control or showing aggression, its best to call your dog in for the day.

Also keep a close eye on your dog’s behavior. If your dog is showing disinterest, fear, or seems on edge, remove your dog from the park as soon as possible to avoid potential problems.

Remember that while you may want your dog to be social, its more important to carefully read your dogs emotions to the best of your ability and to protect them from harmful situations.

Learn more about things you need to consider before, during and after visiting a dog park by reading our latest knowledge center article – Having Fun at Dog Parks: What to Know Before You Go – today.

If you need to work on obedience before you head to a dog park, check out Pet Super Store’s collection of dog training collars, pet car seats and other important items for safely taking your dog out to parks and other public places.

Tail Talk: How to Read a Dog’s Tail

tails

Regardless if you’re a dog owner or not, you’re bound to come across a dog in your everyday life, be it at your friend’s backdoor or on a bicycle ride down a rural road. The more we can learn about how dogs communicate, the better we can keep ourselves and dogs safe and avoid confrontations.

Tails are one of the main ways that dogs communicate both amongst themselves and with humans. You should be aware of several basic tail gestures that dogs use to communicate how they are feeling. Doing so can help protect both you and the dog in question.

The On-Alert Tail

If a dog’s tail is high in the air, it means that the dog is on alert: either concerned about you or focused on something in its environment (like a chipmunk). If the dog is watching you and wagging its tail high in the air, the dog is confident of its territory and thinks it could protect it – from you. If it’s high and trembling, it means to stay away.  Proceed with caution, or don’t proceed until an owner is in control of the dog.

The Happy Tail

A happy tail that is inviting more social behavior from you will be a tail that’s slightly above or even with the dog’s back and wagging calmly. These tails show that the dog is confident, free of fear, and willing to engage with you.

The Cautious Tail

A cautious dog will hold its tail low, either tucked in or near the hocks. This tail means that the dog is submissive, but may also mean that it is fearful. If the tail is low and wagging calmly, the dog is showing submission and you can probably approach the dog slowly with a positive result. If the tail is trembling, then the dog is more apprehensive and may react with fear if you approach too quickly or abruptly.

Stiff Tail = Stay Away

No matter the position of the tail, if a dog’s tail is stiff, particularly if it’s lashing, you should leave the dog alone. Keep your distance as best as you can from the dog and don’t make eye contact.

The more we can educate ourselves, our friends, family, and children about the way dogs communicate, the better we can exist with the growing presence of dogs in our environment.

Pet Super Store advocates for healthy and informed interactions between humans and pets – our store has a wide variety of high-end dog training collars and electric dog fences to keep you furry friend in your own yard and out of trouble.

We Salute Service & Working Dogs

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Pet Super Store Honors Pets on Labor Day (belatedly)!

Service Dogs

A service dog is specifically trained to help people who have disabilities including visual difficulties, hearing impairments, mental illness, seizures, diabetes, Autism, and much more.

Desirable character traits in service animals typically include good temperament or psychological make-up (including being open to learning) and good health (including physical build and endurance).

Labs, German shepherds, retrievers, and American pit bull terriers are the most common breeds used as service dogs. While any breed or mix of breeds is capable of being a service dog, few dogs have all of the health and temperament qualities needed.

The typical working life of a service dog is usually eight to ten years, depending on the owner’s needs and preferences.

Most service dogs don’t work all the time, but are taught to identify work versus free time by whether or not they are wearing their gear. Exceptions to this rule include seizure alert dogs, which must not ignore an impending seizure at any time.

Due to the strict behavior expected from a service dog, it is considered bad manners for people other than the owner to pet the animal.

When service dogs retire, they may remain with the owner or sometimes with a family member as a pet. Not all owners are able to care for the retiring dog and a successor dog at the same time. Usually, the family that raised it as a pup is given the first opportunity to keep him as a pet.

A number of retired service dogs are adopted out to carefully screened homes. These dogs are highly desirable pets because of their manners and obedience training; waiting lists for such placements can be years long.

Working Dogs

Working dogs take on different responsibilities than service dogs. One noble job is a Department of Defense Military Working Dog.

Dogs that have been identified as good prospects are sent to one of only a few boot camps in the U.S.
They go through a 12-week boot camp. The camp is broken down into five phases: basic obedience, obstacle courses, getting used to gunfire, controlled aggression and searching for an individual through sight, sound, and scent.

The K-9’s training instructors use rewards—toys not treats—to teach the dogs basic commands such as sit, no, down, out, heel and stay.

If the dog obeys its trainer and follows the command given, it will get its reward. Toys are not the only rewards bestowed upon the hounds. One phase of the course, the controlled aggression phase, allows the dogs the opportunity to work with a bite suit.

The bite suit exercise is where a person gets into a protective suit that shields them against a dog’s bite. After the decoy suits-up the dog is allowed to chase, attack, and guard the suspect.

Because of its natural animal instinct, the dog will catch a suspect running from authorities and know who is a threat to their human companion.

The dogs must learn to be aggressive on command. Therefore, the dogs are allowed to be as mean as they want – however, the dogs still have to be aware of the commands given to them by their trainers and under control at all times.

After graduating from the course, the dogs become the newest members of the Department of Defense as field-trained dogs. But their training doesn’t end there.

The DoD is also helping with their training by introducing the electric collar, which could help the dogs who have trouble releasing a suspect on command.

Training across the DoD never stops for service members, even if they stand on four legs. These four-legged warriors spend months, sometimes even years, in garrison and on the battle field, just like everyone else who wears the uniform.

Service men, women, and dogs alike stand vigilant along one another prepared for the situations they may face in the future.