Wednesday, December 29, 2010

From Simple Dogs to Guard Dogs - How Guard Dog Training is Done?

Guard dogs, as the name implies are canines that guard and protect a person, objects or properties. Their being a guard dog can be by instinct or through training; they can be protective to companions but they are not intended to be companions. These dogs are also trained not to obey commands from strangers but only to his master.

Guard dog training is not as easy as teaching or training your dog simple obedience commands. It is a very complicated matter and you may want to enroll your dog in a dog training school where the professionals handle the training.
Before your dog can be accepted in the program they will be properly evaluated whether they have the potential to be guard dogs or not based on the temperament of the dog. It will dictate whether the dog is suitable to be a guard dog or not.

Once accepted, the dog training school may require that your dog reside at the training facility for the duration of the guard dog training program. Taking the dog home everyday after the training can hinder the intensive training process.

The dogs will be trained first in basic obedience. Though you have considered your dog to be obedient when he executes a given command on the second or third time, still it is not considered successful because guard dogs should obey immediately each and every command that you give. So, even if your dog has undergone basic obedience training or you already trained your dog for basic obedience it will still be reviewed by the trainer to ensure that the dog can respond appropriately to all the commands given to him.

The duties of a guard dog will be taught to the dogs under training. They are trained not to accept treats from anyone or obey commands from anyone except for their owner or handler. This training will be ineffective if the dog obeys even a simple command given by a stranger such as sit and stay or if the dog accepts treats from a stranger.

The dog will be trained under the guard dog depending on your specific needs. If you want to be alerted for a trespassing in your property your dog will be trained to bark and then return to you to alert you for the presence of strangers in your property. Until the owner acknowledges and understands the dog the process may be repeated several times. The dog will not stop unless he thinks he has completed his job successfully.

Guard dogs that are trained to protect the owner are trained to attack the intruder when a legitimate threat is present or on the owner's command. Guard dogs that have undergone this training, for this reason, should not be left unattended with visitors as they may attack when they sense a threatening motion or action coming from the visitors.

Dogs are also desensitized to loud noises to ensure that the dog will not be dissuaded by gestures or noises used by the intruder to prevent the dog from attacking him.

Finally, trainers also teach guard dogs respect to interact harmoniously with the other members of the family as well as other family pets.

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dog Training Career - How to Become a Dog Trainer

Do you love dogs? Do you like working with people? Do you have a lot of patience?

If you answer yes to all the questions, then a professional career in dog training can be tremendously rewarding for you.

However, at the same time, a career in dog training can also be very challenging and it is going to take you a great deal of time, patience and determination to become a successful dog trainer.

Therefore, let's first examine your motives and ask yourself a few questions before you go enroll yourself to become a dog trainer.

  • Do you love all dogs regardless of age, breed or temperament? Can you really work with them even if the dogs are behaving badly, stubborn and aggressive? Dog trainers must be kind and patient teachers since most dogs cannot be trained in a couple of minutes. Many hours of dedication and patience will be required to work with the animals to achieve the desired results.
  • Are you respectful and comfortable working with people? A dog trainer job is not just about training dogs. It is also about training people, specifically the dog owners themselves on how to handle their animals more effectively.
  • Are you willing to put in a lot of time and effort to become a successful dog trainer? In your dog training career, you will come across many different types of behavior problems with different breed of dogs therefore you will need to be committed to keep your dog training knowledge up-to-date by attending seminars, workshops and conferences. By understanding a wide variety of dog behavior, communication, conditioning, training techniques can help you become a well-qualified, knowledgeable and skilled dog trainer.

Let's say that you have decided that you are truly passionate about dogs and committed to make handling dogs a successful career, the next big question is how to do you start your dog training career?

A career in dog training can begin in a number of ways:

  • By volunteering at one of your local rescue centers or animal shelters, you can pick up lots of great hands-on and observational experience. Often dog shelters will also have some form of training program for their volunteers or you may also be assigned to help one of the trainers. As your experience progresses, you will be given more responsibilities to help out in the training.
  • While expensive and quite a time commitment, attending a professional dog training school or a K9 academy can give you a more formalized and complete education as a canine trainer. To get started, check with your local pet stores or veterinary hospitals for reference and recommendations.
  • You can also contact local breeders and dog trainers in your area and become an apprentice to take lessons from them directly. Alternatively, some guide dogs training centers offer apprenticeship programs for anyone interested in becoming instructors for the school.
  • Another way to start your dog training career is through self study. Read as many training books as possible and attend lots of seminars, workshops and conferences to learn about dog training and behavior modification. In addition, you may also want to volunteer to train your friends or neighbor's dogs to get some hands-on experience and improve your training skills with dogs.

While there are also some mail and internet correspondence courses that claim to "certify" you as a "professional" in the field of dog training and behavior, you would do well to avoid any of them. Most correspondence courses at most can only offer you basic information on dog handling skills and you probably will learn as much from reading books on dog training.

As you make the transition from trainee to dog trainer, you can start your professional career in dog training working full or part time.

According to a recent survey, there are approximately 63,000,000 owned dogs in the United States. And as more dogs take on active roles in security, law enforcement, rescue operations and human assistance projects, employment opportunities for dog trainers are expected to rise more than 15% through 2012 - that means more and more opportunities for dog trainers.

As a professional canine trainer, the income that you could earn can be attractive. The salaries for full-time dog trainers are around $150 or more per hour depending on experience, reputation and location - and for part-time trainers $15 to $20 per hour.

As mentioned before, a career in dog training can be extremely satisfying and rewarding. If you truly care about dogs and can work with both dogs and humans on a daily basis, then becoming a dog trainer would be an excellent and fulfilling career choice for you.

If you would like to have more information about a career in dog training and how to avoid the costly mistakes that 90% aspiring dog trainers will make, check out Dog Trainer Handbook by Sheily B - The premier pet dog trainer education guide and among the best resources for learning more about how to become a dog trainer.

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Saturday, December 11, 2010

Aggressive Dog Training Made Easy

Dog aggression is a fairly common problem that many owners will face at one time in their dog's life or another. It is actually so common that there are hundreds upon hundreds of studies associated with aggression. Questions such as "Why does aggression occur," "Why are some breeds more aggressive," and "How can I use aggressive dog training to curb aggression in my dog," are asked on a regular basis. Before you actually begin aggressive dog training, it is important to understand the type of aggression that your dog may be experiencing. Believe it or not, there are actually several types of aggression and each one will need to be handled in a slightly different manner. The types of aggression are:

- Dog Aggression: this can be seen in many different breeds and it is actually aggression that a dog shows to other dogs. · Fear Aggression: Many people may not see fear as an aggressive behavior but if a dog begins to bite, bark, growl or bare his teeth when he is frightened than it has moved from simple fear to fear aggression.

- Dominant Aggression: This is a very serious type of aggression since the dog has many traits that you would see in a "bully." One of the biggest problems with dominant aggression is that it is not always seen as aggression, just an alpha personality doing what it does best, until the dog attacks someone or something. Another problem is that dominant aggression is very unpredictable.

- Possessive Aggression: To get a clear idea of this, watch your dog while he is eating and is interrupted by someone. If he is fine and continues to eat or even allows you to put your hand in the dish then there is no real aggression there; however, if he growls or bites then you know that he is being possessive about things he preserves as his. While this may seem appropriate, a dog should never be possessive.

- Pain Aggression: This is aggression that is shown when a dog is in pain. · Maternal Aggression: Seen only in female dogs, this is an aggression that is seen when a female is raising a litter of puppies.

- Territorial Aggression: There are several breeds of dogs that are prone to territorial aggression where they see an area such as the house, the yard, the neighborhood or all of the above as his. When other animals or people enter his territory, he reacts in an aggressive manner.

As you can see, there are a large number of aggressions and many dogs will experience one or the other at certain times in their life. While some forms of aggression are very serious and require aggressive dog training, some of them aren't and really only require some patience by the owner to overcome. In the case of pain aggression, it is important to find out why your dog is being aggressive. If he is hurt, take him to the vet to have the problem looked after. When the dog heals, the aggression should go away on its own but if it doesn't, you can move into training methods for it.

In addition, maternal aggression can be avoided simply by spaying your dog but if she does whelp a litter, the maternal aggression should diminish as the puppies are weaned and placed in new homes. In many cases, the easiest way to use aggressive dog training is to socialize your puppy and dog correctly. Many people see socialization as a process that is done when their puppy is young but socialization should be done throughout your dog's life. Exposing him to other dogs, people, places and stimulants will help curb many different areas of aggression such as dog aggression. Remember that when you do socialize your dog, especially if he has some aggression problems, that you do so in a controlled manner.

Make sure all the dogs are on leashes and introduce him to one dog at a time. Never allow your dog to be surrounded by a group of dogs since this can frighten him and trigger his aggressive response. If at any time your dog starts to indicate aggression, simply correct him by removing him a few feet away from the other dog and then praising him when he calms down. Another way to make aggressive dog training easy is to place firm rules in your house from the moment your dog arrives home. This means that he is not allowed on the furniture and that he understands that the home is yours. To battle dominance aggression, it is important to put yourself and everyone else in the role of dominate. Your dog should never eat before the family and he should never be allowed to find food for himself.

When he does eat, take the time to place your hands in the dog's food dish and feed him by hand. This teaches him that anyone is allowed in his dish and it will help curb some possessive aggression. Make sure that everyone in the house does this as well and never let the dog go around your hand to eat directly from the bowl. In many cases, aggressive dog training needs to start with owners. To make it easy, you need to look at how you are training your dog, how he is being socialized and what negative behaviors are being reinforced. For instance, if you nurture fright responses such as growling by coddling the dog whenever he is scared, then he will quickly learn that growling is the proper response to being scared, which may develop into fear aggression.

Ignore some behaviors and correct others with a firm "no," which is an important command with aggressive dog training. When you are using aggressive dog training, it is important that you do not correct your dog in a harsh manner. Although it may not seem like you are being abusive to your dog, a small slap can cause a large amount of damage and if a dog is already aggressive, it will just reinforce the aggressive behavior. After you have corrected how you train your dog, it is time to start aggressive dog training and it is very easy; simply break out the basics of training. Many times, basic training on a regular basis can really help with many forms of aggression and many different types of negative behaviors.

To battle territorial aggression, start by inviting people over to your home and correcting your dog when he begins barking with a loud noise to interrupt the behavior and then a firm "no." When your dog stops barking, praise him and treat. Increase the frequency that different guests visit as your dog becomes accustomed to people being in his space. If your dog is aggressive during walks, it is time to take aggressive dog training out on a walk. Start by taking different routes every time you take a walk. Since the route is different, your dog is less likely to imprint a route as being his.

When he meets people or other animals on the street, correct his negative behavior with a firm "no" and praise him when he doesn't react. As the aggressive dog training is advanced, gradually begin taking him to higher traffic areas until he can walk in a busy place without reacting in an aggressive manner. Although aggressive dog training is fairly easy, it does take some time and it is very important to watch your dog's stress levels and to take your time with training. Remember, your dog didn't become aggressive over night and you can't expect the aggressive dog training to work overnight either, so take your time and enjoy every success your dog has.

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Monday, December 6, 2010

Do You Make These 4 Common Mistakes in Dog Training?

Everyone begins training a dog with a number of unknowns. First, no one can truly know how a dog will react to training and even if you know the breed, there can be differences with each individual breed. Another unknown is the type of dog training that you use. Some dogs do well with food based reinforcement and some do not and owners will need to learn as they go along. While most of the unknowns with dog training can be overcome quickly, many owners make some pretty common mistakes while they are training your dogs. To avoid those dog training mistakes, it is important to be aware of them and that is exactly what I will be doing in this article; alerting you to common dog training mistakes that every owner has or will make at one time.

Mistake #1: Not Setting Firm and Consistent Rules: One of the most common mistakes that owners will make actually has nothing to do with the physical act of dog training and is actually a daily occurrence that usually plays in the background. As every parent will tell you, children require rules and dogs are no different. There should be rules set in place the moment that a dog is brought home. This means that if you have a rule for no dogs on the furniture, then you need to stick with it, regardless of how cute a puppy is. Not establishing those rules right from the beginning can lead to long term behavior problems and your puppy will quickly learn that he can ignore the rules and eventually simply ignore you. It is important that you avoid this dog training mistake right from the start and make sure that everyone in your house will follow the same rules with your dog to ensure the best success.

Mistake #2: Repeat, Repeat, Repeat: Okay, this may be a little confusing since dog training consists of the repetition of an action but while repeating an action over again is fine, repeating a command is not. When it comes to dog training mistakes, I would say that this is the biggest mistake that owners will make and I have been found guilty of this little offense myself. It is only natural to repeat a command when a dog doesn't listen but it is something that you should train yourself not to do. When you repeat a command, you are teaching your dog that he doesn't have to listen to a command every time. This means that a command stops having any affect on the dog and you end up having to retrain with a new command, which can take time and can be very frustrating for both you and your dog.

Mistake #3: Rewarding Bad Behavior: Although there are several types of dog training available, most trainers and owners will use positive reinforcement training, which consists of treating your dog, usually with food, whenever he does something positive. While this is an excellent way to train your dog, many owners make the mistake of treating the wrong behavior and end up reinforcing bad behavior. Bad behavior in dog training is anything that you don`t want your dog to do. So, for instance, your dog is in the kitchen while you are cooking a meal. At first it may not seem like he is doing anything but spending time with you and that may have been the case in the beginning but when you drop your first bit of food, or you toss him a little snack, he will quickly learn to beg whenever you are in the kitchen. Fast forward a year and you have a full grown dog under foot whenever you go to the kitchen simply because you have reinforced that begging in the kitchen is okay. To avoid rewarding a dog for a bad behavior, don`t praise him, comfort him or treat him when he is doing something you don`t want repeated. So if he barks at the door, don`t praise him for being a good guard dog and if you drop some food on the floor, pick it up yourself and take it to his dog bowl if you want to give it to him. By controlling the environment, you can quickly stop yourself from rewarding his bad behavior.

Mistake #4: Saving it for a rainy day: The last common dog training mistake that I am going to mention is the desire to put off training. Many owners feel that dog training should be done after a certain age but it has been shown time and time again that the longer you wait, the harder it will be to train your dog. Dog training should begin as soon as you bring your puppy home. It starts with establishing rules and house training first and then it quickly moves to basic training such as sit, down, stay. Puppy socialization class usually begins around 11 weeks of age and from there you will quickly start dog training. Never leave training until your dog is 6 months of age or older since many negative behaviors are established by that time. In the end, if you are aware of the dog training mistakes that you can make, you will find that you are less likely to make them and your dog will quickly respond to dog training with only a small amount of fuss.

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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Some Obvious Benefits of Dog Training - Help For Owners of Older Dogs

Wonderful...rewarding...terrific...fantastic...very good...okay...not bad...could be better...let's change the subject. If you were asked how your experience at dog ownership is going, where on this word spectrum would be your response? Well, if it's anything less than fantastic, please read this article in its entirety.

Nothing I can think of has the same potential to make such a tremendous contribution to the quality of your life than opening your home to a dog or puppy. And, nothing has the potential to make your life completely as miserable than opening your home to a dog or puppy.

What makes the difference between the first experience and the second? TRAINING! Every experienced dog owner will tell you that training your dog in obedience and socialization is the absolute best gift you can give your dog, your family and you.

A properly trained dog will provide you with unconditional love, countless hours of enjoyment, and genuine, devoted friendship. While an untrained, non-sociable dog can wreak havoc in an otherwise stable, happy home.

The most frequent excuse I've heard why dog owners don't train their dogs is lack of time. Sure, we're all time-deprived, but the hours you devote to training your dog will come back to you ten-fold in wonderful experiences, fun times, and the benefits that come from having a truly appreciative friend and companion who will stick by you in good times and bad.

The Benefits of Dog Training

It'll help you establish a lifetime relationship with your dog

When you decided to become a dog owner, you took on a responsibility to provide for your dog and make his life the happiest it can be. And, since the most important mission in a dog's life is to please his owner, obedience training will help your dog achieve his lifelong mission.

Whether or not you are aware of it, training begins the moment you bring your dog into your home. Your dog will observe everything you do. How you react to his actions, how you interact with the others in the household. Eventually he will look to you for guidance. He wants only to please. Your lifelong mission should be to help him. He'll very quickly depend on you for food, shelter, and companionship.

While there are many very qualified trainers to help you train your dog, I believe with a passion that you would truly be missing out on such a wonderful experience if you didn't take the task of training your dog on yourself. Many resources are readily available that will help you train yourself to train your dog. And, when you consider the fact that dog training is a lifelong process that continually strengthens the bond between dog and master, it only makes sense that you provide that training.

As you and your dog train together, your bond grows stronger, your relationship becomes closer and an attachment will be established that you'll feel just by being with your dog. Your dog likewise will learn so much about you he'll be able to know what is expected of him, just from your gestures, your facial expressions, your tone of voice.

And don't think it will all be work. You'll find it to be an enjoyable experience. Especially when you move from obedience training to trick training (if you decide to take it to that level). Trick training can be fun. You'll find yourself laughing a lot. And that can only be good for you, for your dog and for your deepening relationship.

It will correct behavioral problems

Let's face it, gone unchecked, a dog can be a furry bundle of bad behaviors. Barking, chewing, digging, running away, jumping up, growling, or even worse, biting, are behaviors no responsible dog owner should tolerate. And basic obedience training - the sit, stay, come, down, heel commands -- will go a long way to correcting the vast majority of those anti-social behaviors. A trained dog will be a joy to you, your family, and even strangers. Your dog will be welcomed in more places which will further strengthen his social skills.

Another advantage to conducting the training yourself is that training should continue throughout your dog's life. Learning keeps your dog's mind vibrant, focused, and active. The alternative is boredom, which fosters bad behavior.

Many of your dog's bad behavior problems are actually normal canine activities that happen to occur at the wrong time, or the wrong place, or directed at the wrong thing. Without training, your dog will soil your carpets rather than eliminate outside; he'll chew your furniture instead of his toy; he'll bark at nothing all night instead of just at the intruder. With proper training you will teach your dog to perform his natural behaviors at the right time, place and in the proper doses.

It will stimulate your dog's intellect

Dogs are by nature very curious. They love to investigate. Smells, sights and sounds all become the subject of investigation. This attribute will help contribute to the success of your obedience training. The other attribute is the capacity for your dog to exhibit exceptional intelligence. But, before a dog has the ambition to learn he needs stimulation. If not a sound, sight or smell, then it can be you providing a challenge with obedience training. Your dog will become smarter, and as a result learn more and learn quicker as your lifelong training progresses.

It will encourage inclusion

Even though you will be the primary trainer, you need to involve the entire family in the process. This promotes inclusion which contributes to the feeling of security for your dog. He'll feel very comfortable in his place in the "pack's hierarchy". When properly trained, you will be able to take your dog on family outings, for walks, car rides, even vacations. This is all quality time that further strengthens bond between dog and owner.

It saves time

Proper training that begins on day one will avoid so much future aggravation as well as the time you will spend disciplining your dog, cleaning up the messes he makes, straightening out trouble he may cause neighbors, repairing the holes in your yard, or arranging boarding instead of simply putting him in the car for the weekend trip. Yes, dog training will eventually prove to be a short cut to a very happy experience.

Training your dog is simply the right thing to do. All involved benefit greatly and directly -- you, your dog, your family, your neighbors, and strangers whose path crosses your dog's.

As I mentioned above, I recommend that you afford yourself the opportunity to provide the training yourself. And, I also recommend below an excellent resource that will help you accomplish just that. Best of luck.Article Source:

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