puppy obedience training

Four basic puppy obedience training commands

What every puppy should know

      Now that you have brought your new family member home and your new puppy is settling in it is time to start his obedience training. Puppies can begin their obedience training as early as seven or eight weeks old. 

There are several very basic commands every new puppy should learn. Dog training can be fun for both you and your dog. Teaching a puppy requires patience and time. Often they have very short attention span of  5-10 min at a time so lessons should remain short. Positive reinforcement is more effective than punishments. Hitting or loudly scolding your puppy is a short term solution to an immediate problem. That kind of discipline may lead to more behavioral problems down the road. However, praise, affection and using positive reinforcements like training treats, are more likely to lead to a happy obedient dog. 

Four basic obedience training tips every puppy can learn

The first command you should teach your puppy is :

Come

While enjoying your time together, sit with your dog with some favorite treats in hand. Begin by just saying come and his name, followed by a reward and praise. Slowly distance the treats on the floor and continue to encourage him by saying his name when he comes to get it. Continue to move further away and toss the treats further and call his name. Toss a treat , call his name, allow him to get used to paying attention and turning towards you when you call him. It may even turn into a game of chase, as long as your puppy comes back to you even to get a treat, praise, praise, praise. In no time, your dog will come when called. Then you will be on your way to an obedience happy pet. 

Here is the next helpful training command you can teach your puppy

Sit – Method #1

Now that your dog knows his name, and comes when called. Learning to sit is a good way to begin teaching good manners. There are two popular methods both involve praise and treats or  a “lure”. By now you probably know your puppies favorite treat. To begin teaching him to sit, Hold the lure in your hand and hold it near his nose. As soon as he goes for it and naturally sits back to get the treat, praise him for sitting and reward him. With repetition, consistency and praise this will be a quick command to teach.

Sit – Method #2

Sometimes a puppy may be very active and has a hard time focusing even during a short 5-10 minute session. One clever way to teach is to catch him in the act of sitting THEN praise or reward. In no time, your smart new family member will connect the two things. Once your puppy sits with a treat, it is very easy to replace the lure or treat with a verbal command. Remember to praise and pet for good sitting behavior. Your well mannered eager to please puppy will be ready for the next obedience training session.

Stay

Once your new pal has mastered come and sit, stay is a natural progression of puppy training . By now you both should look forward to your time together. Your dog will be familiar with the sessions and understand that good behavior = reward.

In order to train your puppy to to stay, start with the commands he already knows. Have Fido sit. Stand in front of him with your palm facing him and say STAY. Repeat this process a few times be sure to praise your puppy for good behavior. Begin the process of telling him to sit, tell him to stay and begin distancing away from him, keep your palm up and repeat the word “Stay”. This is more advanced command and may take more patience and repetition. However with time and patience your puppy with become a well behaved pet that stays when told.

A good tip in teaching this trick is to consistently offer praise when you come back to the puppy, NOT if the puppy doesn’t stay and trying to follow you.

 

Down

The fourth and last puppy obedience training tip is to teach your puppy to lay down. This should be a relatively easy trick to teach. As long as your puppy is disciplined and can sit and stay, “down” is another basic command.

To begin this lesson, have a treat or lure in your hand and sit on the floor next to your student. Allow him to sniff his reward in your hand. Guide him to the down position with the command of DOWN. As soon as he is fully on the ground , then reward him with his treat and praise. Repeat the actions several times.

These are the four first basic things that a puppy should learn as soon as possible. Puppies are playful, but also eager to please and looking for direction. Spending ten or fifteen minutes each day enforcing the lesson, and tricks both encourage bonding between you and good behavior. Puppies also enjoy playing with plenty of stimulating chew toys.

pet id tags

Does My Pet need I.D.?

Pet I.D.’s are important.

Yes, your pet needs I.D. tags. Valid up-to-date pet identification or I.D. is one way a responsible pet owner can keep their animals safe and free from danger. You can be an excellent loving owner to your pets. However, sometimes pets get away from us anyways. A curious, intelligent pet can learn to open doors or jump fences. Anxious or frightened pets can escape during a storm, firecracker display, or other natural disasters. or emergencies. A pet should always have a current I.D ( identification) tag on their collar. It improves the chances of being returned to their owners.

Have you ever been driving or walking along and noticed a stray dog running down the street? These dogs are likely scared , frantic and run away from often people trying to help. They are in danger of getting hit by a car, attacked by other strays, abducted and being lost forever. Therefore, if you are able to rescue the stray animal, being able to identify the animals owners is very helpful in getting the dog back home safely. Often strays are rescued by animal loving people, who are unable to house the stray, so they get dropped off at an overcrowded pet shelter. If the animal does not have a collar with tags , the shelter can often scan for a microchip. A valid pet i.d tag or chip hold the information that can quickly help reunite you with your pets.

Valuable information to include on a pet I.D. tags

It is important that your dog or cat are always wearing a collar with their tag on it. A tag should include

  • Pet’s name
  • Your name
  • Your current contact info. (It is helpful to add your phone number and email)
  • Pet’s hometown zip code.
  • Pet medication info, indicating that on his collar could be life saving. If they do wander away, having that information readily available makes it easier to reunite with your four legged family member. Please remember, if your information changes update your pets tag information as well.

What are the best options for my Pet’s I.D ?

Above all, any id on your pet is awesome for their safety.

Pet tags come is a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Most pet collars have rings where you can attach the pet tag, where it is out of the pets way. Many big box chain pet stores have kiosks where you can print dog tags up easily and cheaply. There is no reason you and you pet can not find something you will like, that is comfortable. With all the variety it is easy to find tags that can be fun , functional and reflect your pets personality. You can custom order from animal loving places like Tags for Hope . Amazon also offers a wide selection of tags ,even ones that fit directly on the collar. A perfect choice for an active pup.

It takes a couple of seconds to place an ID tag on your pet, and also a few seconds for your pet to become lost. Wouldn’t you want the person who finds your animal wandering to call you? In addition to a valid current pet tag, it is also advisable for your pet to have a microchip. Personally I recommend your pet have both.

In the event of the unthinkable death of a pet due to an accident, being able to identify the animal and notify the family, can offer closure.

disaster preparedness dog

Disaster Preparedness and Your Dog

Are you and your dog prepared if there is a disaster?

Disasters Preparedness for your dog is essential. Disasters strike when you least suspect them . Therefore, it is good to have a disaster plan in place for your home and family that includes making provisions for your dog and other pets . If you live in an area that gets hurricanes, tornadoes, or earthquakes, you probably have some idea of what you will do to evacuate or if you lose power and services. But what will you do with your dog?

 Disasters can also strike your home, when you are not there. spelling a disaster for pets that are home alone. You can get stickers for your home windows that let fire rescue workers know that pets are inside in need of rescue. You will probably pack a first aid kit for your family, but don’t forget about supplies for your dog as well. Ask your veterinarian for advice on how to treat your dog if he is injured in a disaster and what supplies you should have on hand. Be prepared to live off of your emergency supplies and be totally self sufficient for at least seven days.

What should be in your dog’s basic first aid kit ?

It is important to make an emergency supply kit for your dog and other furry pets. Preparedness reduces stress.  

  •  A seven days’ supply of food,
  •  Treats, Poop bags
  •  Bottled water,
  •  Bowls
  •  A few favorite toys, 
  •  An extra leash and collar WITH identification AND an Emergency contact
  •  Copies of important papers,vet records

If your dog doesn’t use the crate on a daily basis, you can store all of your supplies inside it. It is a good idea to have a blanket and travel crate packed This helps your dog feel secure at a time when everyone may be panicked. You don’t want your dog to get scared and bolt. You may even want to consider buying a halter or harness rather than a collar so your dog is less likely to get away. It is also a good idea to make sure your pet is microchipped for easy identification

Hopefully, you and your dog or other pets, will never be involved in a disaster but it is always best to be prepared and not need it, rather than to be in need of supplies and shelter and have nowhere to turn. The time to plan for your dog’s safety and well being is before there is any threat underway. Many evacuation centers will not accept dogs and the ones that do usually require advanced registration. Its good to have a back up plan for you animals.

You don’t want to have an emergency and have no where for your dog to ride it out in safety. Above all else, never go off and leave your pets alone. If it isn’t safe for you to be in your home, it isn’t safe for your pets either.

dog, pet, walk your dog week

Pet safety during a Pandemic

Does Covid 19 virus pandemic pose a real risk to our pets safety ?

Yes and no. There have not been extensive cases of household pets like cats and dogs contracting Covid-19, however, now that we are almost a year into this worldwide pandemic, more cases have been reported.

Let’s talk about Pet safety during a pandemic. There is a minimal risk to our pet’s safety during this pandemic if we take simple precautions. During this pandemic, there have been very few cases of the virus transferring from pets to humans. The few cases on record happened were likely caused by the animals’ close contact with an already infected person. Therefore, it’s a good idea to practice proper hygiene around pets. Wash your hands after petting and feeding. Wash their bedding frequently. It is important to keep them safe too.

What to do if your pet is diagnosed with Covid-19

What are symptoms of the virus in dogs?

Symptoms of Covid 19 in pets are similar to humans. They can develop a cough, fever and runny nose yet symptoms are likely to be mild. It is not the same reaction as people. If you suspect your pets have been exposed or infected, call the vet and notify them. There is no vaccine available, but a vet can best advise how to treat your pet. Therefore, it a good idea to practice safety measures around them especially if you feel under the weather. It is more likely for you to get them sick , than the other way around.

But please, don’t ever put a mask on your pet.

However, please keep your pet in a clean safe environment and wash your hands after tending to them.

There is no evidence that the virus can spread to people from the skin, fur, or hair of pets. Do not wipe or bathe your pet with chemical disinfectants, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or any other products not approved for animal use.”

CDC website

What can we do to keep all our family members healthy ?

Although many of us are working from home these days during this pandemic, pet safety and your pets need to be considered on a daily basis. This has changed their lives as well. Many kids are home from school. Because we are at home more pets all over the world pets are receiving and enjoying the extra constant company. The dog and I are taking longer walks and enjoying more cuddle time. Fortunately, the risk for infection being around just household members is very minimal.

To stay healthy we continue on our daily dog walks. However, we stay six feet away from other responsible pet owners. We enjoy meeting new people and pets, but currently it is being avoided for safety of everyone. If a household member were to get a positive covid-19 test reading, our pets would need to be quarantined away from others for two weeks.

Pizza the Wonder cat, is an indoor-only cat. Cats are thought to be more likely than dogs to catch COVID -19. however since he doesn’t leave his bed, don’t worry he is safe.

pal of the week Pizza

Pal Of The Week- Meet Pizza Our Mascot

This week our Pal of the week is Pizza the Wonder Cat I adopted this laid back California cat when he was just a tiny kitten. Walking into my local animal shelter ten years ago, minutes before closing a volunteer walked in with a litter of kittens. He wasn’t even 2 lbs. when I first held him. It was kitten season at the time and I was allowed to take him home the next day to fatten him up. A few weeks later he went in to get sterilized. He has been a happy homebody ever since.

Life with Pizza my pal

He has been an indoor cat his whole life. As you can see, he gets all the attention he wants. Although some cats like being alone,, this big guy’s favorite hobby is snuggling and hanging out with the other household pet. This cat will do just about anything for some of his favorite treats including opening drawers to help himself. He was part of my inspiration to start this blogging adventure. Through most of my shenanigan he has stuck it out with me, this is no different. We have moved multiple times and with multiple roommates over the years. He is a patient loving cat. This is the first time in his where he could hang out with a dog. It took some time but they are now calm around each other, mostly. Even though the dog loves to bark, Pizza rarely swipes at her. Today, he is a daily part of the quality control team at A Wandering Pet. He is always testing products (and getting scolded for sleeping on the keyboard often). When not “supervising” he hangs with the other pet at home, living his best life. This is why I wanted to celebrate Pizza as pal of the week.

3 mos old
3years (the rebel years)

Today he is still very active. He does enjoy long naps on his favorite blanket. I am looking forward to cooler weather when he will want to snuggle under the blankets.

10 years old