DOG TRAINING AND BEHAVIOR

The dog on the couch is okay — if you say it is.

Things You Think Make You a Bad Dog Leader (But Don’t)

“In many of my conversations with clients, they are very apologetic about the fact that their dog sleeps on the bed with them,” says the head of the Tufts Animal Behavior Clinic, Stephanie Borns-Weil, DVM. They think it’s proof that they are too lenient and doesn’t show the dog who the leader is. “I happily […]
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The Right (and Wrong) Treats for Training

When training either a puppy or adult dog, you’re going to need lots of food treats to keep your pet focused on getting it right. But to make sure not too many of his calories come from treats, which are generally not complete and balanced nutritionally, make sure each one is no bigger than your […]
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Dangerous Dogs And Child

Teaching Your Dog to Handle Different Kinds of People

Some dogs react negatively to men with beards, tall people, people in hats, young children — even those with different skin tones. That’s right. Differences from what dogs are used to can freak them out, and some dog guardians indeed worry their pet might be bigoted. The dog will bark, and even lunge, at someone […]
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Her dog doesn't let her exercise

More Physical Activity, Less Fear

Dogs who get less than an hour a day of physical activity and who seldom engage in training activities are more fearful of people and other dogs than pets who engage in at least 3 hours of physical activity each day and whose owners involve them in training sessions at least sometimes. So says a […]
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They Can Sense Impending Earthquakes

Since ancient times, people have been saying that animals become more agitated before an earthquake, aware that something is amiss hours before the devastation occurs. Now the anecdotal observations have been put to the scientific test — with some remarkable results. Researchers reporting in the journal Ethology tagged dogs, cows, and sheep with technical gadgetry […]
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Professional Dog Walker Having Fun And Caring For His Customers

The Myth of the ‘Alpha Dog’

How many times have you heard that dogs are pack animals with an alpha as the head, and that if you don’t take the alpha position and dominate them, they will dominate you? People who buy into that concept often treat their dogs harshly in the belief that’s the only way to make sure their […]
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Detecting the Scent of a Billionth of a Teaspoon?

You knew dogs had a keen scent of smell that leaves ours in the dust, but a billionth of a teaspoon’s worth? That’s what chemists found at Canada’s University of Alberta when they trained dogs to detect the scent of gasoline and other ignitable fluids. Methods used to detect the scent in laboratories have fallen […]
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Dear Doctor: Guilty as charged, perhaps, but not feeling any guilt

Q. Please settle this one for me. My husband says dogs don’t feel guilt, but I can see it in my dog’s eyes if...

Fear of Thresholds

Seemingly out of nowhere, your older dog balks about walking from the family room to the kitchen, or jumps over the back-door threshold to...

Cheat Sheet for Building Trust

Dogs are so ready and willing to accommodate our lifestyles that it’s easy to forget they have needs of their own that go beyond...
dog licking paw

Dear Doctor: Constant paw licking

Q. My 7-year-old terrier licks his paws constantly, as if they are itching. My groomer said it is just a dog’s habit, but I’m...

When a Dog Doesn’t Get Along with Other Dogs

You hear it all the time: people say their pet is a “people dog” or a “dog dog,” meaning the dog either likes people or other dogs, but not both. Of course, in the best of all possible worlds, your dog is not averse to either species. But a dog can get into a frightful […]
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