Spending 10 minutes a day or 10 minutes every other day on training helps your dog’s mind stay stimulated. He/she can keep up on their skills and even learn something new. Try something your dog knows how to do and make it more complicated. You can build on a training exercise by adding distractions, like moving the training exercise outside, or to a new venue. Add length of time or distance. Think about taking another class, even though your dog might be doing well; just like people enjoy going to a class, meeting new people and learning something new, you dog will like meeting new dogs and puppies and learning new things.
Big Sky Dog Training is now teaching at PetPeople in Deerfield, IL, a great new store for our community. I have classes on Thursday evenings at 7:00 p.m. and Sundays at 3:00 p.m. You can start the 6-week training program any time, as registration is “Open Enrollment.”
775 Waukegan Rd, Ste 150, Deerfield, IL 60015
The other location is at Dogs In The Ring in Skokie, IL. I have classes there on Saturdays at 11:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. Again, you can start the 6-week training program any time, as registration is “Open Enrollment.”
Dogs in the Ring
7243 St. Louis Ave, Skokie, IL 60076
The cost for these classes is $175.00 for each 6-week session. If you need to miss a class, you are welcome to make it up, hopefully within 8 weeks from your start date.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions or to register.
Montana C. Hayes
Owner, Big Sky Dog Training
Let’s throw away the saying, “I have to be the Alpha of the pack.” First of all, when you bring a puppy or dog into your home, they become part of your family, not part of a pack. A pack of dogs are dogs that are unrelated and usually means 3 or more animals together. Like at the dog park.
Leadership is one of the most forward-thinking training procedures you can use on your puppy or dog. I am using Leadership in this instance to mean setting boundaries, both physical and behavioral. You wouldn’t let your young child decide what time to go to bed, or let them decide what time to eat, so why do that with your puppy and/or dog?
You don’t need to yell…yelling can aggravate the situation by bring more stress into the situation. If you don’t want the dog to beg at the dining room table during meal times, put the dog away during those times (i.e., crate or tether it). If you don’t want the dog to jump on you and your friends, then don’t let him/her do it when they are a puppy.
Physical boundaries relate to where your puppy or dog can physically go in your home and outside, depending on the dog’s age. Discuss these with your family:
- Can the dog be up on the furniture?
- Can the dog beg for food at the the dining or kitchen table?
- Can the puppy have free run of the house? If not, what room(s) can he have access to?
- Should the dog wait at the door before being let out?
Behavior boundaries relate to what behaviors are okay for your puppy or dog. Again, discussion with your family leads to compliance from everyone in the family, even the dog.
- Can the dog jump on you?
- Can the dog bite you or your clothing?
- Do you want the dog licking you or your friends excessively? (Do you really believe a dog’s mouth is clean? Not!)
- Is the dog allowed to pull on the lease?
- Can the dog chase small animals? (My fear is of skunks!)
Give me a call and we can discuss way to avoid pitfalls and get you on the right track.
If you’re attempting to eliminate an undesirable behavior, remember to reward your dog for engaging in some other behavior that is appropriate. For example, if you’re attempting to eliminate jumping up on your guests, reward your dog for sitting, which is both incompatible with jumping and is a more desirable greeting. Other examples are chewing on a Nylabone rather than the table leg (or you) or being quiet rather than barking. This concept is extremely important for all dogs, but especially puppies under five months of age when their lifetime personalities and habits are being formed.