Ren’s training 003


Ren’s training update for weeks 10, 11, 12 & 13 

Wait, Leave it & Silent leave it 

Wait- I wrote an article here on it  Video

Leave it- I am using wait and leave it for two different meanings. Wait is for things that Ren can have she just has to wait for them for example, food, going through doors and greeting dogs. Leave it is for things she can never have like people while she is working, dogs while she is working and food while she is working. Video 

Silent leave it- a silent leave is when a dog or puppy starts to be trained to understand that unless they are told to they can not take food off the floor. video 

Stay (Out of sight, in distracting areas, with distractions) 

Out of sight- Start with a solid stay and slowly move toward leaving the room.

In distracting areas-This week we did our first trip to petvalu where we worked on Ren’s stay, as seen in this video. By working in distracting loud areas we are able to bombproof her stay.

Stay with distractions- Using distractions of all kinds can help make a stay more stable. For example in this video Ren is staying while I roll a ball past her, this was difficult for her in the beginning as she has a medium to high ball drive. We tried about 4 times and then she got it.

Place, Heel & Under 

Place- We use the word place for Ren standing at attention beside me, I use this word because I want her to understand that it is her spot beside me. In the end I would like her to come from across the room to her place beside me. Video 1, Video 2, Video 3 

Heel- I taught this to Ren by giving treats to her while she walked beside my nee. I will continue to work on this by using a wall and putting her on the inside.

Under- This is a command often used in the service dog community to get our dogs under chairs or under subway chairs, we use this to keep our dogs out of the way. Video 

That’s all for now, we will have another update in a few weeks.


Wait 002

img_9815   Wait, its one of those commands that are on all of the “top ten things to teach your dog” lists and for good reason. Wait is a vital part of a dogs training it can be used for many different situations ie waiting at doors, waiting for food. waiting before going to play.

How to teach Wait

Step one  hold a treat in one hand, show the hand to your pupper, when they stop licking your hand or look away click and feed them the treat. Once they start to understand say leave it every time they stop licking your hand. Say Wait while they lick your hand if they stop licking click and feed. Video 

Step two Placing the treat on the floor while they lie down, say wait, if they do click and feed. Place the treat on the floor say leave it and wait for them to make eye contact with you once they do click and feed for the eye contact. Video 

Step three Now its time to increase the difficulty, longer time they must wait for the treats and harder treats. Start this by waiting 30 seconds, a minute, 5 minutes until you can get it up to 15 minutes. Start leaving the room and see if they will leave it, this is trained with patience they will not wait when you exit the room over night start slow walking away in the room then leaving the room. Use harder and more high value treats like raw meat.

That’s all for now go forth and train those puppers!


Ren’s training 001

Ren’s training 001, this is the first update on how Ren’s training has been coming along.

The first thing I worked on with Ren was her name with eye contact , food guarding prevention and sit. ~8 weeks old~

Teaching a name – Sit on the floor with your pup and wave the treat in front of their nose until you have their attention, once you do bring the treat up in between your eyes and say their name, click and feed for every time they look you in the eye when you say their name.

Food guarding prevention– Petting your dog while they are eating is a good way for the pup to understand that you are in their space. dropping treats near their bowl while they eat will help them understand that you are their to share with them not steal their food. Here is a video of Ren and I practicing this.

Sit– Guide a treat above your dogs nose and lead their head back until they sit. Click and treat once their butt hits the ground. A video of Ren demonstrating her sit.

The second set of things I worked on with Ren were Lie down, stay and drop it. ~9 weeks old~

Lie down– Ask your puppy to sit and and drag the treat down to the middle of their belly this will force them to lie down,click and feed once they are on the floor. Video here 

Stay– Start with your pup in either a sit or lie down. Put your hand up and say stay wait for 5 seconds click and feed if your puppy hasn’t moved slowly increase the time and distance by taking one step back each session. Video 

Drop it– Get your puppy really interested in a toy or rope, get them to get a hold of it and put a treat under their nose when they drop the toy say drop it and click and feed. Video here 

Well that’s all for now.

Starting off on the right Paw (New puppy guide)

What do you do to set a puppy up for a successful life?

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  1. Make the puppy feel comfortable/Crate training  Start by taking your puppy into their new potty space to let them relive themselves. Then play with them a bit until they are tired (If you have an 8 week old puppy this should happen fairly quickly.), After the play session take them to their space AKA a crate or kennel have a nice soft blanket on the floor of the crate and some toys. Make sure the crate is just big enough that they can get up and turn around. Play some comforting puppy music and leave them be for 2 hours.
  2. Socialization is so important to making sure a puppy is set up for a successful life. Star by looking for a puppy social/ puppy play class in your area, this will be a safe place for the puppies to play free of diseases they could get from dog parks. It is important to get your puppy to meet as many dogs between the ages of 8-12 weeks, 50-150 dog encounters is recommend. Walking your puppy in your neighbour is a great way to get your puppy to meet people and dogs. As your puppy gets older walking them by and around dog parks is a good way to introduce them to dogs. Socialization isn’t just about people and other dogs, its also about experiences and sounds. It is important to introduce all the things you would like your dog to enjoy in this critical time period, Such as grooming(nails, ears, and baths) going to the beach(swimming), walking in busy neighbourhoods and loud common noises (vacuum, fireworks, car starting up).
  3. Obedience training early will make your life a lot easier as your dog gets older. After a day of settling in its time to start training. Start with teaching your puppy their name, a big mistake many people make is just saying their puppies name all the time. To properly teach a puppy their name sit on the floor and put a yummy treat between your eyes and say their name, over a few days they will realize that their name means “look at the hooman”. Puppies are very willing to learn in their first few weeks so use that to your advantage.

I hope this helped! Put the right paw forward!

Mistakes when training new commands

Training a new command!


Dogs get bored just like humans, when training new commands I often see a few common mistakes.

  1. Always using the same treat!  Stop doing this your dog is not going to be as excited to train when the treat reward is always the same. Try freeze dried beef liver or green beans or bananas!
  2. Moving too quickly! You have done one training session and your pup seems to get it so you are fading out the lure, and all of the sudden your dog doesn’t understand anymore? No. It because you are moving too quickly, give your pup time to understand. Its okay if your pup is a slow learner pushing them too fast will just mess up the fun of training.
  3. Only using food as a reward! Food is not the only reward out there, training with a toy or ball can have a lot of advantages, mainly being that toy driven dogs don’t pick as much random shit off the sidewalk to try and eat because they aren’t food obsessed. (anecdotal evidence)
  4. Getting frustrated/ or angry! This happens all the time, people start moving too fast and then get upset because their dog hasn’t got a clue what is going on. If your dog isn’t getting it look at the situation, Is she tired? is she bored? If your dog isn’t getting it take a break revisit the task tomorrow!

Hope these tips where helpful! Here is a link to the new thing I have been teaching Cora “finish” (Link) we just started learning at the time of the video.

That Crazy Dog

Cora and  I started our new class “Canine Good Neighbour” at WhenHoundsFly in Toronto. Cora and  I started at WhenHoundsFly last year in June for puppy classes, they were great and you learn a lot. I always choose the class date that an instructor called Rachel was there, she was amazing really fun and always answered my questions. In august of 2015 we took “Foundation Skills” where we learned ‘go to mat’ which I use everyday with Cora stay, leave it and a few other obedience things as well as some recall. We finished that class and  I decided that since I was still in school I would wait until I was done to do the next class  so I decided to sign Cora up for “Canine Good Neighbor”.

The first class was yesterday night 2016/06/31. We came into the class my dad , Cora and I, with Cora pulling to see the other dogs and she was doing some husky talking everyone in the room was probably wondering why exactly she was in an advanced obedience class. The first activity was being groomed by one of the instructors. HAHAHA what a joke! All Cora wanted was to be pet, of course she let them touch her but she was wiggling too much. Next we did “stay” I was so happy stay is a command that Cora really does know well, I was begging her with my eyes to do it the way I know she can at home and at the park and guess what? She did very well, the rest of the class went much better after I got my confidence back as a trainer.

So, the point? If you want a high drive dog, like a husky or German shepherd just remember that they can get crazy and they love attention but when its time to shine with hard work you can have them obeying like a champ.

Off leash Vs. On leash: Reactive Behavior

          Off leash dogs in a non off leash areas are the worst. So you are walking down the street with your dog minding your own business and BAM! A dog runs up to your dog, This situation can go a couple different ways.

   You have a friendly nicely socialized dog. The off leash dog runs up and bites your dog because it has some sort of behavioral problem. Great what now? Well first of all is your dog hurt? Second of all who owns this dog? After you questions are semi answered and you either yell at the other person or calmly exchange info, you take your dog home. The next day you go on a walk and BAM! Your dog starts freaking out on the leash when it sees another dog walk past you they start nipping and growling. This has happened because your dog is now traumatized, I guess that’s 500 dollars down the drain to go to a trainer and try to fix this reaction problem that was created by someone  who let their dog run off leash.

   The second scenario. Your dog has some leash reactive issues already so you are always on guard and you are always training while on a walk. The off leash dog runs up to your dog scares your dog and they  bite. Now you have to deal with some person yelling at you that your dog hurt their dog when they are just an irresponsible dog owner who let their dog off leash in the middle of the street. Now again you are probably going to have to pay for some medical care depending on the bite and now your dog has another bad experience under their belt pushing your training backwards.

    Now this is the lucky situation. You have a well socialized dog and a dog runs up to your dog they sniff and nothing bad happens, Great!

   Why don’t we just keep our dogs on leash unless its a designated off leash area?