Creating Kinder, Gentler Experiences for Pets



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- Adding Behavior Services -

The Puppy Place!  IdealPuppy® Classes

Basic Rules for Puppy Classes

a.    Attendance - Plan to attend every class in the course, and with as much of the family as possible.

b.    Practice - the lessons every day.  Ten minutes of concentrated training just before feeding 2 or 3 times a day is a good way to start.  (We recommend no free choice feeding.)

c.    Exercise - the puppy before class to encourage elimination, and drain some energy.

d.  Illness - Don’t bring the puppy if there has been coughing, diarrhea or acting sick within 2 days prior to class.

e.  Nature Breaks - each person cleans up for own puppy.  Owner yells “nature break” and everyone picks up their dog until the mess is cleaned up.  Hospital supplies the cleaning tools.

f.  Listening Position - holding collar, puppy sitting on your lap or between your legs (cradled). If puppy wiggles hold still firmly. Let out a deep breath and relax YOUR body to signal the puppy to relax. As the puppy relaxes, you relax your hold on the puppy. The puppy learns to settle.

g.  Acceptable Behaviors  for play sessions - Greeting, Sniffing, Play Bow, Chasing, Tag, Jumping, Rolling, Running.

h. Unacceptable Behaviors - [3] : Mounting, Pinning or Chasing a worried dog, Serious fighting, Panic, Approaching a cornered fearful dog.

i. Gentling:  give cookies in exchange for: Suspension; Cradling; Stroking; Massage.  Demonstrate Kong frozen “Pup-sicles” [2]

j. Dog Waits Before Going In Or Out Any Door This includes home, or car.  Until solid, dog drags a 10” lead to step on to prevent escape.  Dog rushing out without a release NEVER works.  Say, “WAIT”. If rushing, step on the lead, the dog is brought back inside to try again without punishment...  Once waiting, say, “OK!” and release out the door.

[1] Commands given the dogs are in CAPS

[2] These are various sized Kong ™ toys filled with frozen dog food plus a "fuse."  Clean each Kong™ between use, as with any other food or water container.  Put a full can of soft dog food into a plastic bag.  Add enough water to make it mush, and massage it through the bag to mush consistency.  With scissors, cut one corner just large enough to squeeze out the mush into the Kong™, fill them to 90%, and use the empty can to hold them upright.  Last, place a short piece of jerky or other treat in the end as the "fuse".  This part will initially attract the pet.  Then this gives the dog something to do, to try to lick out the food as it gradually thaws.  This many calories need be reduced from the daily feeding. 

[3] For unacceptable behavior:

1. Interrupt the behavior and redirect the dog towards another dog.

2. If the dog repeats the behavior pick-up the dog, put in the lap for a short time out, and then redirecting towards another dog.  3.  If occurs again dog takes a time out in owners lap for duration of the play session.  4.  If the dog repeats again, suspend the aggressing puppy, then roll on its side on the ground and let the other puppies sniff all over it.   5.  If repeats again puppy is put in time out on owner lap for duration of class, take for a walk or place in a kennel in the back and recommend a consult with a behaviorist prior to attending another class.

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...::::::: Copyright© 2000-Present  All Rights Reserved by Rolan Tripp, DVM  and Susan Tripp, MS, Animal Behavior Network and Associates :::::::...