Caring for Your Dog
Basics | Behavior Tips | Housetraining |
Household Hazards | Supplies
Teaching your dog to be a well behaved family member will take time,
but will be worth it as your dog becomes a loved friend.
Dogs who have been chained can make good house dogs
(like T.J.), but may need extra training. Your
"outside" dog will be excited when first coming in. Donít give
up! Your dog will calm down. He is
just excited about being in a new place and getting so much attention!
about rehabilitating a chained dog.
Dogs aren't toys! Dogs are living creatures with personalities and needs. If you don't want a dog, please don't get one just for your child!
You will pay the vet bills. You will buy food and supplies, and
you will care for the dog when your child grows up and gets busy
with other things.
Man's Best Friend
are pack animals. In the wild they work, play, eat, and sleep with company. Your dog wants to be
with his pack: you!
Chained dogs often bark out of frustration and
loneliness. Just getting your dog off the chain will reduce barking.
Some dogs bark more at night. Bringing your dog in at night should stop
Dogs who are exercised and happy are less likely to bark. Walk your dog
and let him get to know the neighborhood so he won't feel threatened by
it. A tired, happy dog will sleep instead of bark.
Teach the word "Quiet." After your dog starts barking, startle him with
a noise (like calling his name) or by tapping a treat on his nose. When
he is silent, say "Quiet" and reward him. Then you can use the command
"Quiet" to stop barking.
Decide at the beginning that no one will feed the dog from the table. Don't allow guests to break this rule. Feed the dog before your meal, and he wonít be hungry.
Every time puppy bites on your finger say, "Ouch".
Not the way a person would say it, but the way a puppy would say
it...high-pitched and loud! Puppy will think he's hurting you. Then
ignore the puppy for a few minutes. Donít grab, squeeze or pop them on
- Tearing Stuff Up
Never leave your new dog alone in the
house. You are asking for trouble if you let an untrained dog have
full run of the house! A crate is best. Privileges are earned and your
new dog must be mature and trained before you give him total freedom.
Give him chew toy and rawhides. Let him get used to being alone so he
doesn't chew out of nervousness. Gradually leave him alone for longer
periods of time. Leaving and returning should always be low-key.
Provide your dog with his own sandbox. Bury toys
in it and teach him it's okay to dig in there.
- Jumping On People
When your dog jumps on you, back away or
turn away. Donít say anything or look her in the eye. Do this every time
she jumps. Your dog wants your attention. Only give your dog attention
when all four feet are on the floor.
There is tons of information online about dog training and behavior. Search for specific terms such as:
introducing new dog, dog jumping, dog aggression, submissive urination,
etc. Dr. P's
Dog Training site is a good resource.
The Golden Rule of Housetraining is...
Never let an un-housetrained dog out of your sight while the dog is
inside! Every time a dog relieves himself inside, it teaches him itís
OK. An un-housetrained dog should be either:
(1) Inside, with you watching him
(3) In a crate
If you follow these rules, your dog should be trained
in a week or two. Adult dogs can be housetrained, too!
- The best method is the crate training method. Buy a pet carrier
or cage big enough for your dog to stand up, turn around, and lie
down in. This will be the dog's ďdenĒ and sleeping place.
Dogs are clean animals and want to keep their home and sleeping area
clean. Even young puppies will try their best not to go inside their
- On the dogís first day home, let him wander in and out of the
crate. Put a towel and some treats in it. Put the crate close to
where the family hangs out, so your dog will feel like part of the
- Young puppies must go out many times a day. Young puppies need
to go 30 minutes after eating or drinking. Older dogs need to go out
four or more times daily.
- Take the dog to the SAME spot outdoors. The smell will remind
him why he's there.
- When puppy relieves himself outside, PRAISE him, "Good Dog!!Ē
and give him a treat. Praise is the key to housetraining! Your dog
will learn that going outside means treats, and will be eager to go
- If you're inside and notice your dog starting to sniff and
circle, grab him and take him out. If you catch him in ďmid-streamĒ,
startle pup with a noise and take him out.
- What if you notice a mess on the floor but didnít see your dog
do it? Clean up the mess without fussing at your dog. Dogs live in
the moment and wonít understand that you are punishing him for
something he did in the past. Rubbing your dogsí nose in the mess or
hitting him with a newspaper wonít work at this point.
- Use a cleaner that will kill smells and bacteria, such as Simple
Green (grocery stores), Natureís Miracle (pet stores), or vinegar
and water. If you donít clean the spot very well, the smell might
make him go there again.
- At bedtime, take your dog outside and then lock him in his crate
for the night. He'll make an effort not to foul his bed. Then take
him outside first thing in the morning. Some young puppies may not
have the muscle control to hold it all night and will have to go out
during the night.
- Donít feed your dog after about 6:00 p.m. This will help your
dog make it through the night.
- Dogs can be left in a crate 4-6 hours. Dogs should not be left
in a crate more than 8 hours. If you canít come home during the day,
consider leaving the dog outside.
- Tips: Hang a jingle bell on the door and jingle it when you take
your dog out. He will learn to ring the bell when he needs to go
Install a dog door. Dog doors are a wonderful invention! Dogs
quickly learn to come and go on their own. You can buy dog doors at
pet stores and discount stores.
Read a schedule of a typical day of crate training.
More articles and
advice on housetraining, including hard-to-manage cases.
- Anti-freeze (dogs love it but it is deadly)
- Pins and needles
- Twist ties
- Cleaning products
- Electrical cords and cables (Tape them to the floor or cover with plastic tubes made for this
- ID tag
- Quality food
- Chew toys
- Collar and leash
- Food and water bowls
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