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WELCOME TO THE M.A.R.S. ONLINE CANINE TRAINING CENTER

Thank you for wanting to learn more about how to strengthen your relationship with your pet! Here, you will find tons of helpful information that all pet owners will benefit from! Please feel free to contact us with any questions!

*The information found at this site is solely for informational purposes, and is not meant to diagnose nor treat any behavioral issues. A professional trainer should be consulted prior to starting your pet on any training regiment.

Where Would You Like To Start?
Click one of the links below to focus on a specific issue, or simply scroll down to review all sections.

Introduction to Pet Ownership

Abbey
  1. Selecting a Collar
  2. Selecting a Leash
  3. Puppy-Proofing Your Home
  4. The TRUTH About Crates
  5. The Right Crate For Your Pet
  6. House Training Your Pet
  7. When DO I Take My Puppy Outside?
  8. Having Trouble At Night?
  9. How To Leash Train Your Pet

Pet Behavior & Training Techniques

  1. Training Q & A
  2. Training Collars
  3. Being the "Pack Leader"
  4. Exercise, Discipline, Affection
  5. Behavioral Modification Training- COMING SOON
  6. Rules of Interaction With Your Pet
  7. Board-In-Training- COMING SOON

Training Your Pet- What To Use, and What NOT To Use

Upon visiting your local pet supply store, you will see there are many varieties of collars, leashes, bowls, toys, and treats. We will highlight some training tools that we recoomend, along with a few key items to avoid.

 
Selecting a Collar

There are tons of different styles, colors, sizes and types of collars. We recommend starting with a nylon dog collar that is adjustable (fully adjustable as opposed to the 'belt buckle' style). The nylon collars come in a wide variety of colors, designes and widths (to top LEFT). A pet supply store sales associate should be able to assist you in properly fitting your pet with their new collar. Usually, the nylon collars will have matching leashes.

Leather Dog CollarWhen fitting your pet with a collar, it is important that the collar fits properly, and is not too tight or too loose. When sized correctly, you will be able to fit two fingers snugly between your pet's neck and the collar.You may also try a leather collar (left), however, we recommend starting off with the nylon, which is a bit lighter on their neck.
Dog HarnessITEM TO AVOID: HARNESSES. PERIOD. ANY KIND. ANY COLOR. ANY MATERIAL. DON'T BUY IT. Harnesses (to RIGHT) are best left for sled dogs and service animals that are trained specifically to work while wearing a harness. HARNESSES ENCOURAGE PULLING by redistributing resistance from the leash from the neck to the chest, and your dog will want to lean into it. A larger Beagle is capable of pulling an adult off their feet on slippery surfaces while chasing another dog or squirrel.

 

Nylon Dog Leash

Selecting a Leash

There are many sizes, colors and types of leashes. We recommend a regular nylon leash (4' or 6' in different widths) in assorted colors (to LEFT). Nylon leashes are perfect for all breeds, sizes and energy level of dog and puppy.

 

Retractable Leash

ITEM TO AVOID: Retractable leashes (to RIGHT). Retractable leashes encourage your puppy to PULL, because when they do, the retractable leash will give them more slack. Also, if you are using this type of leash, and you drop the handle end while walking your dog, it will retract once you let go, moving quickly towards your dog, and can 'chase' them, creating fear of leashes. Some dogs, if they are stronger, can get all the way to the end of the retractable leashes' cable, and break it.



Puppy-Proofing Your Home

Puppy Eats the Couch

As innocent as they look, puppies are capable of inflicting extensive damage to your home and furnishings if you are not prepared!

  • Make sure that all elecrical cords are hidden away and off the floor, where sharp little teeth may have access to them. However "enlightening" that would be, wires are not a good snack!

  • Make sure your garbage cans are securely fastened, or hide them away under a sink. Smells that we find offensive often attract unwanted attention from our furry friends. The odor of last week's leftovers are definietly repulsive to us currently, but your pup will smell a feast!

  • Put clothing items (socks and shoes are good examples) that may tempt your pup safely out of reach. If you are not able to watch your pup, he is better off safely in his crate.

Your puppy cannot tell the difference between an old sneaker that was given tot him and your nice new running shoes.

It is a common misconception that because dogs stereotypically enjoy chewing tennis shoes, it is ok to give your dog an old shoe as a chew toy.  If you do not want him to chew all shoes, DO NOT use ANY as chew toys. This rule applies to any household items

IMPORTANT NOTE:

A big part of preventing "problem behaviors" is stopping them before they start!

In other words, if you cannot watch your pup, put him in his crate.

We strongly urge new owners to utilize a crate to minimize accidents during your pet's unsupervised time. It is very difficult for your puppy to destroy a couch from INSIDE a crate.dog crate

A crate is a safe environment for him, and will keep your belongings and furniture intact!

SAVE YOUR FURNITURE, YOUR PET, AND YOUR SANITY- USE A CRATE!

We hear the same story time and time again:

Pet Owner: "We have to get rid of our puppy."

Rescue Team Member: "Oh, no! Can I ask why?

Pet Owner: "He is destroying my house, my rugs, my couch. There is nothing that he will leave in one piece. We have to find him another place to go now, or he will eat me out of house and home...literally. This puppy needs an owner that can train him not to destroy things."

Rescue Team Member: "Are you using a crate to help with training?"

Pet Owner: "NO! I think it's cruel to put him in a crate." 

Ok, guys, what's wrong with this situation? 


By choosing not to use a crate, this puppy has gotten away with many problem behaviors.  

Is it more cruel to use a crate and stop the behaviors, or get rid of your family pet that loves you so much?

Puppy Eats the Couch

The TRUTH About Crates!

As most "dog people" know, it is very important for the well being of your pet to have a safe place that they can be when you cannot watch them. No matter how big or small, old or young, crate training is a good idea!

Using a crate for your pet overnight AND when you cannot keep an eye on them helps them to learn the concept of housetraining more quickly, and keeps everyone happy. Dogs are less likely to have accidents if they are confined to the area where they sleep. This is part of the "den animal" mentality. 

It is much more difficullt for a dog to destroy your brand new couch from INSIDEpuppy sleeping in crate a crate... 

  • It is NOT cruel to crate your pet when you are not around.

It will help to prevent bad habits, such as making a snack out of your son's track shoes, or eating the macaroni off of your daughter's art project. It is very difficult for your pet to destroy your furniture from INSIDE a crate!

  • Puppies and dogs ENJOY their crates once they are trained!

Your pet will view a crate as a safe, secure place that is their own. After they are crate trained, you will notice that they will enter their crates willingly, get comfortable and take a nap. 

dog traveling in crate

Being content in a crate is a nice skill for your pet to have!

It can make travel easier, or create less hassle when your neighbor agrees to babysit your pup while you go on vacation!

Traveling With Your Pet

It is always best for your pet to ride in a crate anytime he is in a vehicle. Not only will it keep him contained while you are driving, but it will also keep him safe in a car accident.

What kind of crate is right for your pet?

The PUPPY Stage

We highly recommend the wire training crates at all stages of your pet's life, but they are especially helpful during the housetraining stage. Most of the wire crates will come with a removable divider, that will allow you to appropriately size the wire crate for crate training, and allow you to make it bigger gradually as your pet grows. This will save you money in the long run, as the divider will allow you to buy the size crate that he will need when full grown, and make it smaller while he is a puppy.

*Do not put ANYTHING in the crate with your puppy, except for a Kong toy (see Recommended Toys page) while he is in the training and teething stage.

Training Tip: Play with your puppy with the Kong toy before you ask him to go in his crate, then toss the toy into the crate to get him to explore the crate. If he enters during play time, do NOT close him in right away. Instead, throw the toy a few more times into the crate until he enters it without hesitation.

dog in crate3

The ADULT Stage

Once your dog is comfortable with his crate, is not teething any longer, and you have not witnessed ANY destructive behavior, you can add a pet bed to your dog's crate, and an appropriate Kong toy. We still recommend the wire crates, as they allow better air flow than the plastic ones.

Training Tip: Save a special treat only for the times when you ask your pet to enter the crate, like a certain type of training treat that Scruffy really likes.

Housetraining


How to Housetrain Your Puppy

Housetraining can be a daunting task, but with a few training aids and a large commitment on your part, you can succeed. Just like parenting, you will need to be patient, vigilant and most important, consistent!

Set A Pattern

Just like with a new baby, it's best to have a schedule and stick to it. Your puppy will quickly learn that there are times to eat, sleep, play, and eliminate. Housebreaking can be tricky, but in most cases, it is absolutely necessary for a healthy relationship with your pet! Each pet will learn at a different pace, so please be patient with your new pet while they are learning. Offering praise, or even a treat when they succeed will help to motivate your puppy.

For the most part, a puppy can control his bladder for about one hour for every month he is old. So if you have a two-month old puppy, he can hold it for about two hours. If you wait longer than this to give him a bathroom break, you will be setting him up for an accident. If you work outside the home, arrange for someone to give your puppy his breaks.

Give Frequent Breaks

Begin by taking your puppy outside immediately after he wakes up and at least every two hours thereafter. He will probably need to go during and after playing, and you will want to take him outside after eating or drinking too.

Pick Your Spot

Determine where you want your outdoor "bathroom" spot to be and then guide your puppy to this spot using a leash. While your puppy is going potty, use a word or phrase like "go potty," that you can eventually use before he eliminates to remind him what to do.

Praise & Reward

After he is finished, reward him with praise, a treat, a long walk or some playtime. Remember to do this consistently and immediately after he's finished and when you are still outdoors. This step is very important because it's the only way he'll know what you expect. Make sure he is finished before you reward him. Praising him too soon may excite him enough to stop in the middle of his business and then complete the job when he's back in the house.

Make A Feeding Schedule

Establish a regular feeding schedule for your puppy. What goes into a puppy on a schedule comes out of a puppy on a schedule. Depending on their age and breed, puppies usually need to be fed twice to three times (tiny, toy breed puppies may need to be fed up to four times) a day. Feeding your puppy at the same times each day will make it more likely that he'll eliminate at consistent times as well.

Prepare A Bedtime

You can reduce the need for your puppy to have to relieve himself in the middle of the night by picking up his water bowl about two and a half hours before bedtime. Most puppies can sleep for approximately seven hours without having to eliminate.

If your puppy does wake you up in the middle of the night, just quietly take him out to do his business and return him to his bed. It helps to turn on as few lights as possible and not to talk to him or play with him. If you do, he might think it is time to play and won't want to go back to sleep.

Vigilence

Whenever your puppy is indoors, you will need to keep a watchful eye for signs that your puppy needs to eliminate. Some of these signs are barking or scratching at the door, squatting, restlessness, sniffing around, or circling. When you see these signs, immediately grab the leash and take him outside to his bathroom spot. If he eliminates outside, give him lots of praise and reward him with a treat.

Tethering

During the housetraining process it's helpful to tether (Poly Braided Lead) your puppy to a piece of furniture while inside to more effectively keep an eye on him. Use a six foot length of rope so he has plenty of room to roam, but he is not able to get out of your sight.

Keep your puppy on a leash in the yard, as well. Your yard should be treated like any other room in your house. When your puppy has become reliably housetrained, then you can give your puppy some freedom in the house and in the yard.

Confinement

When you're unable to watch your puppy at all times, he should be confined to an area small enough that he won't want to eliminate there. This space should be just big enough for him to comfortably stand, lie down, and turn around in. You can use gates to block off part of a utility room, bathroom or laundry room for this purpose.

You can also crate train your puppy. When using this method, be humane as possible. If your puppy has spent several hours in confinement, you'll need to take him directly to his bathroom spot as soon as you let him out, and praise him when he eliminates.

Accidents Happen

Accidents will happen. It is a normal part of the housetraining process. If you catch your puppy in the act of soiling in the house, interrupt him. Say "OUTSIDE!" and immediately grab the leash and take him to his outdoor potty spot. Praise him and give him a treat only if he finishes his business outside.

Clean To Eliminate Odors

It won't do any good for you to punish your puppy for eliminating in the house. In fact, it will do more harm. Just clean up the soiled area. If you rub his nose in it and scold him, you will just make him afraid of you or eliminating in your presence. You will have to clean the area really well and use an odor eliminator (Nature's Miracle Odor and Stain Remover) to keep your puppy from soiling in that same area. It's so important to be consistent and vigilant. If you follow these steps, you will have fewer accidents. If you allow your puppy to have a lot of accidents, you will only confuse him about where he is supposed to go and therefore prolong house training.

Paper Training

If you must leave your puppy alone for long periods of time, confine him to an area with enough room to sleep and play, along with a separate place to eliminate. Use training pads (Pooch Pads) with a floor protector in this area for your convenience.

If you clean up an accident in the house, put the soiled rags or paper towels in the designated elimination area. The smell will help your puppy recognize the area as the place where he is supposed to eliminate.

If you need help, Email Us!

Having trouble at night?

 Knowing when to go to your pet and when not to go makes a huge difference in the amount of time it will take to housebreak/crate train your pet.

When to go to him: 

  • If he has been content in the crate, or has been asleep for a while and wakes up suddenly and starts whining or crying, he probably has to 'use the grass'.
  • If you hear any noise that sounds unusually distressed, such as a sharp, constant, high-pitched yelp. Your pet may be stuck or gotten into something.
  • First thing in the morning.

When NOT to go to him:

  •  If you have just put him into the crate and he has already been fed, had water, and 'used the grass', and he is whining. As long as you know that he is safe and secure (and there is NOTHING in the crate with him, aside from super durable, indestructable toys, like a Kong), then DO NOT go to him. If he whines for 20 minutes and then you give in and let him out, you have just taught him that if he whines for 20 minutes, you will let him out. Then, the next time, he will whine for 30 minutes until you give in again. Then he will whine for 45 minutes, and so on. The more you go to him at the wrong time, the longer it will take him to get the hang of it, and the more annoying the incessent whining will become. Giving in to the whining may also trigger separation anxiety because when you do actually leave him to go to the store, he may become panicky and cry for hours on end knowing that you will eventually give in and come and let him out.

Lilly and Molly

How To Leash Train Your Pet


Leash training is an essential part of having a pet. Being able to walk on a leash is an important skill that your pet should have in order to make going to the park, or a trip to the vet, as hassle-free as possible.Walking on a leash is NOT a skill that comes naturally to most pets, and it may take some time for your four-legged friend to be comfortable performing this task. As with any type of training, it is important that you remember to clearly show your pet what is expected of them.


Where Do I Start?

The first step to getting your pet to walk on a leash is to get them a comfortable, appropriately sized collar. It is important for puppies to get used to wearing the collar so they can have proper identification on them at all times.


Expect Some Resistance

Puppies that are not used to wearing collars will scratch at their necks while the collar is in place. This is completely normal, and as long as your pet is current on flea and tick prevention, you can rest assured that the collar is the cause of the itch. You may notice that your pet will walk a few steps, stop and scratch, walk a bit more, and stop again. This will subside in time. Once your pet gets used to the sensation of having a properly fitted collar on, it will not cause them any discomfort. If you are not sure, ask a pet supply store associate to help you fit your pet with a collar to make sure that it is the right length and width for your furry friend.

Biscuit Goes to ClassOffer Encouragement

Your pet will look to you for reassurance during training sessions. Offer your pet affection and a scratch behind the ear when they display the behavior that you want! While leash training, any time your pet is moving in the direction that you want, offer them verbal encouragement and praise!

Motivate Them

If your pet has a favorite toy, use it to get them going in the right direction. As soon as they do what you are asking of them, offer them a 15 second play session with that favorite tennis ball or chew toy.Once My Pup Is Moving In The Right Direction, THEN WHAT? This is a key moment to further the training of your pet! Once he will willingly follow you using the collar and leash, it is time to move forward with obedience training (sit, down, heel). A lot of pet supply stores offer obedience classes where a professional trainer can supervise the progress that you and your pet are making. Professional trainers will work with you to meet your individual pup's needs, and to help ease any "communication barriers" that you may be experiencing!

Dog Walks OnwerDoes this look familiar?  -------------------------------->

This situation occurs way too frequently when owners do not know how to properly train their canine companions to walk nicely on a leash. Most owners need assistance with training, especially if it is their first dog. Training assistance can be attained by consulting with a private dog trainer, or canine behavior specialist (MARS has one on staff for any questions), training classes through a pet supply store, or calling your local park district.

Below, we have outlined some training tools, and offer recommendations, and items to avoid. If you have questions, feel free to ask- email DogsFromMars@aol.com.

Training Collars

When choosing the right training collar for your pet, you will need to determine what your focus is with your pet, and what areas your pet needs more training in. You should always consult a qualified trainer, or pet supply store manager when buying a training collar to make sure that you know how to use the collar properly.

Retractable Collar

The retractable collar will allow you to give your pet a correction with the leash, while adding a slight contsriction. This collar is helpful for mild leash pullers, or very young large dogs. This collar should fit your pet's neck snugly, and the chain should have hardly any slack. When walking your dog with a training collar, the leash should be loose, except when you are giving a correction.

A leash correction is done by giving a short, sharp tug on the leash, and then returning the leash to loose. This motion is also called a 'pop'. The technique is referred to as a 'pop and release'. You should not jerk your dog around, pull him across the floor, or apply more pressure than needed at any time. The leash correction should be given at the same time you say "No!" in a calm but firm voice- no shouting.

Choke Chain

CAUTION- ITEM TO AVOID!

Choke Chain Collar

Choke chains are one of the most dangerous collars out there. They can constrict your pet's throat to the size of a quarter, and strangle your pets.

Do not use a chain collar under any circumstances.

This collar gives a 'correction' by closing off the windpipe, and you will hear your pet choke and cough

Pronged Training CollarThis is a pronged training collar, or pinch collar. It may look scary, or painful, but it is NOT. This collar should fit your dog so that the pronges rest on the skin high on the neck, and should not dig in to the skin, or be hanging loosely on your dog's neck. This collar simulates the correction of a mother, or alpha dog, given to puppies that are playing to rough, or misbehaving. This sensation is easily recognized by puppies and dogs, and makes the correction very clear. This is one of the BEST training tools available. You should make sure you know how to use the collar properly before trying any training method on your own. When used correctly, these training tools are humane, safe and effective.

When walking your dog with a training collar, the leash should be loose, except when you are giving a correction. A leash correction is done by giving a short, sharp tug on the leash, and then returning the leash to loose. This motion is also called a 'pop'. The technique is referred to as a 'pop and release'. You should not jerk your dog around, pull him across the floor, or apply more pressure than needed at any time. The leash correction should be given at the same time you say "No!" in a calm but firm voice- no shouting.

BECOMING YOUR PET'S PACK LEADER

When it comes to training animals, everyone you ask has their own thoughts, styles, and philosophies. We have found, however, that there are certain key aspects that definitely improve your connection and communication with your pet. Here is some "food for thought".

TRUE OR FALSE:

A veterinarian is the right professional to consult regarding behavioral issues.

If you answered FALSE, you are CORRECT.

FACT: While your veterinarian may know generally about pet behavior, their education and training is for the MEDICAL aspect of your pet's health. A pet behavior specialist, or professional dog trainer (accredited, of course) is the right person to ask when Sparky is having dominance issues. That is not to say, however, that in some cases with behavioral issues, there isn't an underlying health issue, so please make sure that your pet is routinely checked for health related issues by your vet. 

TIP: A good trainer should know enough about pet health issues, and be able to recommend a vet exam if they believe there is a health-related cause.


 

TRUE OR FALSE:

When training a dog, the handler should always expect that the dog will make a mistake and keep a tight hold on the leash.

If you answered FALSE, you are CORRECT. 

FACT: Your pet will always feed off of your energy. If you are tense, frustrated, or negative in any way, your pet will sense that, and may respond accordingly.

TIP: Before working with your dog, take a deep breath and visualize a calm, positive moment you shared with your pet. This will provide you with positive energy, and a goal to work towards.

HERE'S THE SCENARIO:

"I rescued an adult dog from a shelter, and he is wonderful with me and my kids, but I was told that he does not get along well with other dogs. He has lunged at other dogs while we were out on a walk, and he pulls on the leash to try and get at them. It makes me very nervous, and as soon as I see other animal, I pull my dog close to me and hope that nothing bad happens. He is a rescued pet, and I feel bad disciplining him."

WHERE DID THIS PET OWNER GO WRONG?

A. She should have crossed the street when she saw another dog approaching to get as far away as possible.

B.She should avoid any situations that might be uncomfortable for her or the dog.

C. Try to walk your dog at times that you think less people will be out to avoid the situation.

D. Enlist the help of a dog behaviorist to help you and your dog work through the situation. You must remain calm, and in control of the situation.

If you chose D, you are CORRECT.

FACT: Dogs live in the "here and now". It is never too late to work with your dog to correct behavioral issues, you must first, however, set aside your emotions. Feeling "sorry" for a dog does not help them to move past their issues. That type of owner mentality allows your dog to "get away" with behaviors that would not be tolerated from other animals.

TIP: Consult an animal behavioral specialist that is willing to come to your home, observe the problem behavior, and work with you on properly handling the situation. Training classes at pet stores are nice for basic obedience, but when there is any type of aggression, it's time to call  trainers that specialize in that area.


 

HERE'S THE SCENARIO:

Husband: "Even though my wife does not want Sparky on the furniture, I sometimes let him sit on the couch with me to watch t.v. when she isn't home. I don't see the problem- he understands that when she is around, he's not allowed up there."

WHERE DID THIS PET OWNER GO WRONG?

A. He should have first put a sheet or old blanket on the couch so that his wife won't see the pet hair on the couch.

B. There is nothing wrong with this situation- dogs are capable of higher reasoning skills.

C. The husband should enforce household rules as far as dog behavior so it does not cause behavioral issues later on.

If you answered C, you are correct.

FACT: CONSISTENCY is one of the keys to having a well-behaved and reliably trained pet. IT IS NOT FAIR TO YOUR PET TO ENFORCE RULES HALF THE TIME. Making sure that all members of the household are in agreement with the rules, and are willing to enforce them is VERY IMPORTANT when training a pet. Sparky needs to understand that ALL house rules apply ALL of the time. Example: If you do not want your 100lb. dog to jump on grandma and grandpa, it is probably not a good idea to let them jump on you or other guests.

TIP: Once you establish what behaviors are/are not acceptable, ask your family and friends to participate in training your pet. CONSISTENCY AND REPETITION are the keys to success. If you do not allow your pet to jump on you, ask your guests not to encourage it when they come over. If you must correct your dog in front of company, be calm and assertive, and explain to them that you are working with your dog to correct the behavior, and you are not hurting your pet.

Exercise, Discipline, Affection- What Does That Mean?

If you are having trouble working with your pet, make sure that you are taking advise from the correct source. Please make sure that you are calm and assertive, and that you are not projecting negative energy onto your dog. You are not doing your dog and good by ignoring problems because you "don't want to hurt him". It is your duty to rehabilitate bad behavior, and train yourself with regards to dog behavior! Your pet looks to you to be the leader. Please make sure that you are filling that role. You owe it to your pet! Please remember the "order of operations" (courtesy of Cesar Millan) when it comes to fulfilling your pet- Exercise, Discipline, Affection.

General Rules For Interacting With Your Pet

  • If you are excited and hyper, your pet will be too.

  • If you are nervous or anxious, your pet will be on edge. Dogs can smell the hormones our bodies release in times of stress.

  • If you are calm and quiet, your dog will be more reserved and respectful

  • If you want your dog to be overall calm, do not get them riled up, don't play rough with them, and don't encourage them to be too intense or aggressive. Some dogs can get way too intense in a game of fetch, so don't praise or reward them when they act this way.

  • If your Maltese gets anxious and crazy around other pets, when you see another animal it is not a good idea to say to your pet, "Look, Sammy! What's That?! There's another puppy! Look at that! You're so excited!". It is never good to purposely send your pet into a frenzy, expecially in public places. You may not even know you're doing this. You may just grab the leash tightly as your heart rate goes up, and pull your pet away as you think 'oh no! He's going to freak out!'.

THIS NEXT ONE IS VERY IMPORTANT!!!!!

  • DOGS DO NOT PROCESS AN 'ATTEMPT TO COMFORT' THE WAY PEOPLE DO. Here is an example: You bring your dog, Sammy, a 70lb Lab mix, to a groomer to have their nails trimmed. Sammy does not really get out of the house much, aside from a daily walk. His nails are long overdue for a trim because it is difficult for you to bring him anywhere. Sammy is panting and pacing around a bit. Having an experienced and confident groomer is always a plus, and today, you got lucky. Your groomer walks Sammy around for a minute to familiarize him with the room, then puts Sammy on the grooming table. The groomer touches each of Sammy's paws, and then touches them each again with the clipper. The groomer then picks up his paw, and clips the first few nails. Because Sammy does not meet new people on a regular basis, or go to different public places frequently, he is nervous, and jerks his feet away from the groomer and starts flailing and jumping around to try to get away. The groomer remains calm. You call to him from across the room in an upbeat sounding tone, "It's ok, Sammy! Good boy!" 

After reading this scenario, you're thinking 'ok, so what's the problem? I don't see anything wrong'. Here is the break down- By verbally praising (or 'comforting') Sammy when he is ultimately misbehaving (the jerking away and flailing around), you just told him 'Good Boy' for that behavior. Dogs are all about instant gratification, and require either praise or correction upon displaying a behavior. If your dog jumps on the counter, you say, "No, off!". So why, when he is flopping around like a fish on the grooming table, do you say 'good boy'? We understand that it is an attempt to comfort him, but dogs only see praise, reward and correction. Your attempt to comfort Sammy is seen as praise for the bad behavior. Wait until Sammy is calm, then praise him. If you have an experienced groomer, they have probably seen this behavior before, and may tell him "no" when he jerks away, wait until he regains his composure, then resume clipping his nails and says, "good boy".

OUR TRAINING PHILOSOPHIES 

  • All interaction with your pet should be to either teach them a new task, make your pet a better member of your community, or to further your bond with your pet.

  • Use every opportunity you have to give your pet exercise, socialization with people and other pets, and if you are ever unsure of how to proceed, ASK us!

  • Follow the MARS Canine Training Triad

THE MARS CANINE TRAINING TRIAD

Part 1: Consistency 

Part 2: Praise

Part 3: Correction

 

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ITEM TO AVOID: Retractable leashes (to RIGHT). Retractable leashes encourage your puppy to PULL, because when they do, the retractable leash will give them more slack. Also, if you are using this type of leash, and you drop the handle end while walking your dog, it will retract once you let go, moving quickly towards your dog, and can 'chase' them, creating fear of leashes. Some dogs, if they are stronger, can get all the way to the end of the retractable leashes' cable, and break it.