Dog Training Through The Holidays

Winter:

Winter weather can bring lots of unexpected challenges for pet owners. Frolicking in the snow is great fun for dogs and a fantastic photo op, but it’s not so fun once that ice gets packed between their toes! Salt is widely used to keep sidewalks and driveways clear, but would you want to walk across it barefoot?

Visit your local TDS store to chat with our expert staff for recommendations on gear and pet-safe alternatives to get your pooch prepared for the coming winter season!

Doors:

Does your dog like to shove their way through the door as soon as it’s opened? Door darting can be extremely dangerous, and chances for escape go way up when you have unprepared visitors coming and going! If your dog does not have a reliable Stay, Wait, or Place, take precaution and keep your pup safe behind closed doors or gates.

Due to limited time constraints, we were unable to demonstrate the entirety of the training process in this video. For assistance in training polite door manners, contact a TDS Training Facility near you!

Decorations:

When you’re decorating and spreading that holiday cheer, it can be easy to forget about what those things could entail for our pets. Sparkly, dangling tinsel is very enticing for pets to play with, but it can present a dangerous choking hazard. Poinsettias are an iconic holiday plant, but did you know they are toxic to cats and dogs?

For anxious pets, the sudden appearance of unusual objects around the house can be incredibly stressful. If your pet is worried about decorations or other holiday activities, provide a safe place for them to observe from afar. Never force your pets into uncomfortable situations to make sure everyone in the family has a safe and happy holiday!

Socialization:

Socialization or socializing? What do they mean? Aren’t they the same?

NO!

Socialization is a critical part of raising a well-adjusted puppy, but it is an easy mistake to confuse it with socializing. Socialization is a LOT more than meeting other people and dogs. In fact, socializing (meeting new people) is only a tiny fraction of socialization (learning how to live in the human world)!

Puppies are literal babies that need to be shown how to interact with just about everything. From car rides to vet visits, everything is new and strange, and it’s impossible to cover every single scenario in a few short weeks. That’s why socialization is so important! The key is to build your puppy’s confidence around new things and encourage them to look to you for guidance. This way, when you encounter something you haven’t prepared for, your puppy will still feel safe and secure.

Feeling overwhelmed? Contact your local TDS Training Facility to enroll in puppy classes today!

Fear Periods:

Does it feel like your puppy went from confident to timid overnight? Did they suddenly start barking at strangers or inanimate objects? They might be going through a fear period!

Fear periods are a normal part of every puppy’s growth. It teaches them to question their environment and take precaution. However, sometimes that manifests in one day deciding that the toaster is now very suspicious. It’s important to be patient with your puppy while they are in this stage of development. One bad experience during a fear period can create a life-long phobia!

For professional guidance, talk to one of our experienced trainers at The Dog Stop!

Grooming and Handling:

Visits to the groomer or vet can be very stressful for dogs. However, did you know that you can get your puppy accustomed to these experiences while they are young? Cooperative care is the fantastic realm of training pets to not only tolerate but actively participate in handling exercises!

By taking things slow and making sure each step is positive, we can teach our puppies to enjoy being brushed, give us their paws to trim their nails, and even hold still for vaccinations!

While it’s easier to start from puppyhood, cooperative care works on adult dogs too! If your dog struggles during nail trims or panics at the vet office, contact your local TDS Training Facility to learn more!