Spring and summer are great periods to potty train a puppy. This step is crucial to get off the right paw with your puppy that can also provoke a lot of headaches. Here are 6 simple steps to successfully potty train your puppy!
- Choose a location!
Choose a corner or a portion of your backyard to allow your puppy to know his landmarks. Choose a room or a specific location in the house or your condo to prevent your puppy from choosing the entire home in order to relieve himself.
For the outdoors, your puppy could go anywhere without it being problematic. On the other hand, for potty training inside, I recommend a room like a bathroom or laundry room or even the balcony if you are in a condo. Your puppy should have a visual fence. That’s why I encourage a room instead of an open space.
- Maintaining a logbook
Your logbook should be very simple, you should write down what your puppy did, the time, the place and what he was doing just before. A puppy urinates an average of 7 to 12 times a day and can make 2 to 5 stools. It is important to be able to recognize the times of the day when your puppy needs to relieve himself.
The logbook will allow you to better recognize the times when you need to be attentive and proactive with your puppy. You can better remember the schedule and routine of your puppy.
- Environmental monitoring and management
It is difficult for your puppy to hold back or prevent possible accidents. It is your responsibility to monitor your puppy at all times. You can tie up his leash to you while you prepare supper or put it in his kennel or fences to avoid accidents.
Do not hesitate to close nonessential doors to your puppy. Fences for toddlers are also great ways to restrict your puppy in a safe way.
- Accompany your puppy
You should be next to him when it’s time to relieve himself. No need to stay 30 minutes or more outside. Escort him for less than 3 minutes and then you go back inside and keep watching him if he has not done anything.
Do not hesitate to put your puppy on a leash to manage his space and to help him concentrate. You must also accompany him to encourage his successes.
- Reward your puppy
Contrary to what we believe, it is not necessary to give a treat to your puppy when he successfully does his business outside. I simply recommend you to literally explode of joy by talking to him and petting him. So, your puppy will be so valued for his good action that he will have the reflex to start again in the same way.
Punishment must absolutely be avoided. Do not force your dog to smell his poop and don’t reprimand him physically. The punishment does not have the effect of teaching a puppy a good behavior. As potty train is not a natural behavior for your puppy, you have to accompany him in this learning.
- Communicate with your puppy
Potty training is like teaching a puppy to sit down. You have to choose a word so your puppy can associate the action of relieve himself. For example “toilet”, so every time your puppy does it, you repeat the word “toilet”. This will allow you to better communicate with your puppy. Once inside, if you see him turn in circles or smell the floor, you just have to tell him “toilet” and he will have the reflex to move to the intended place.
Finally, by adhering to the 6 steps your puppy should find his landmarks in just a few weeks. Puppy education courses are also a good way to get your puppy trained with the help of a canine educator to make sure your new companion is developing normally.
Let’s continue in the spirit of our previous articles where we carry you in the skin of a cat the time of an article to better understand his behaviors. Without making the anthropomorphic error of thinking we know what a cat really thinks.
This time, you are in the shoes of a cat that has just been adopted by his new family. After spending a few weeks in a shelter, you might think you would be relieved to find yourself in a house, but you do not. This is another stressful change and you just got used to the shelter.
Luckily for you, your new owners are familiar with the CatEducator and have read BeOneBreed’s blog on the introduction of a new cat at home (They are well informed and smart. You are lucky!). That is why, as soon as you arrived, they isolated you in a room with a litter box in one corner of the room, water and food in the other. You immediately notice two things. The first is that your olfactory sense tells you that you are not the only feline in the house, which further increases your anxiety. The second is that the room is filled with treats … treats all over the place!!! WOW!
After having carefully walked around the room with the belly on the ground, pushed by your gluttony, you are reassured that the other cat is not in the room. In fact, you understand pretty quickly that he’s on the other side of the door, because you see his paws under the door. You do not have think about it. Your new owners shake a toy stick that stimulates your hunter instincts and makes you forget all these new stressful elements. In fact, you find the place rather nice with these treats and games.
Then, the door opens. You think that the other cat will take a swing and jump on you, but you see that he has been placed in another room to allow you to explore the house alone and without hassle. As you explore, you’ll find treats in every corner of the house. Each turn reveals treats, which prompts you to explore the place much more quickly. During your exploration, you see one of these new Katt3 (these new owners are really amazing!), cushions, interactive bowls and a water fountain, all you can say is that you are so lucky!
All this makes the experience much less stressful than you anticipated. Then, as you were not convinced enough of staying here for the rest of your life, you suddenly get a bowl of wet food … Your nostrils cannot believe it, McDonald’s for cat! You rush to the bowl to devour it and while you are busy to eating, the owners open the door of your room a few inches. You see the other cat, also feasting himself away from the other side of the door. As the door is only a few inches open, there is no chance that he can jump on you even if he saw you, he seems too busy eating his succulent meal.
– ” Hello!‘’ you say without stopping eating
– ” Hello!’’ Says the other, distrustful
– “Is that always the way it is? Do you always have cat McDo to eat? ”
– ” No! In fact, since you’ve been here, it’s amazing how many feasts I’ve had. I do not know what you told them, but thank you buddy! ”
– ” I thought it was because of you!”
As you are about to finish your bowl, the door closes. You can’t be more delighted with this first encounter. The scenario is repeated several times a day. They bring you a feast, the door opens, you see the other cat and it closes once the meal is over. You notice that each time your bowl moves closer to the door and that the same happens with the bowl of your new buddy. At one point, you find that the other cat is too close to you. Even if the door still prevents him to reaching you, you cannot help but throw a meow towards the other cat that does the same in return. You turn to the owners waiting for your punishment to have been bad, but they surprise you, they only move the two bowls from the door and put them at a more comfortable distance without saying anything else. How lucky you are! If they had punished you, you would have associated this punishment to the other cat and would surely have taken him as an adversary.
This merry-go-round continues for about a week, until you and your new roommate can eat at a distance of one foot on either side of the door, without any fuss. You sometimes exchange glances, nothing more. And if one or the other expresses a little dissatisfaction, the owners only take the bowls away and do things more slowly next time.
Then comes the day when the bowls are positioned at a good distance, the door open completely. The owners let you negotiate your territorial contracts together and share the resources without intervening, unless it turns into a fight. At the first sight of growling and small slaps, they will let you settle this between cats.
So you begin to purr of happiness at the idea that you have really joined an extraordinary family that will give only give you joy.
“Treats,” “food,” “sweets,” we often use food rewards because we want to spoil or encourage the good behavior of our dog. Let me give you some tips to use rewards properly.
What is a reward?
Whatever he likes! Food, a toy, a word, a caress. A reward is simply something the dog wants to get. Every dog is different and it is important to recognize your best friend’s preferences.
How to recognize the value of your reward?
Depending on the situation, the value of the reward may vary. For example, if your dog likes to run after your cat and you command him to “stay” if he listens you will you tell him “good dog” or offer him an enticing treat or even pull out a toy to play with him? We often make the mistake of offering something less interesting than the behavior we find disturbing.
Why reward our dogs?
Because a dog does not reproduce any behavior that is not profitable. If you do not use a reward to encourage good behavior, you may have the reflex to punish bad behavior and often this type of method does not always discourage behaviors that you want to see stopped in addition to causing anxiety to our companions.
Is rewarding always necessary?
Yes, because it is utopian to believe that your dog will “listen” to please you. Your dog responds to your requests to get or avoid something. However, the same type of reward is not always essential in all situations.
Should the reward be cut off?
Yes of course! We have to reward everything and then less and less often. It is wrong to believe that we will always have to give something to the dog, but we must remind him once in a while that good behavior could be rewarded.
In closing, we now know that we learn more from our success rather than our mistakes. All the more reason to encourage your dog’s good behavior and thus develop a strong relationship with him for many years.
As you seem to have enjoyed entering into the skin of “Mr. Cat” or “Miss. kitty”, in our last article, let’s repeat the experience. Again, the goal is not to make anthropomorphism (the worst enemy of the behaviorist) but to try to make you see the world from the cat’s perspective. This allows us to better understand what he perceives when we punish him and to be more informed on how to educate him. Ready? You now have four legs, whiskers and meow instead of talking!
You climb onto the table. That’s when your favorite slave … oops! True, he doesn’t like to be called that way. Let’s go for “owners” and let him believe he is the real owner of the house. So you just got on the table and your owner approaches you with his angry face and he is saying:
– FLAN DSERIT, RLU FSA SU KCHAI … flali oust, treflla!
You do not understand what he tells you. If you had a human-cat translator, you would have understood that he said:
– NO cat, NOT ON THE TABLE … get down now!!!
In fact, all you know is that he speaks loudly and that it is unpleasant, but you really do not know why. Here he goes into the kitchen without saying anything more. Why did you yell after me? It’s hard to understand this slave … oops … owner! Hoooo no, here he comes out the “water spray”! You know what happens when he has this in his hands! He sprays water on you so it is better to run away.
You run into the living room and climb into your cat tree, your brand new Katt3 by BeOneBreed, that you adore (yes yes it’s free advertising … it’s the price to live in the skin of a cat now :-). Your owner seems satisfied now. Does he really believe you understood that you should not go on the table with this water spray? Absolutely not. After all, the vaporizer never pursued you in the house. It is always held by the owner. Also, if you had really understood, you would not go back to the table every day. If you really did not have the right to go to the table, would you be punished every time you go? But you’re never punished when your owner is not there and even when he’s there and watching TV, he’s never upset that you’re on the table. So the problem is not the table, is it?
In fact, when you think about it, the only common point of all these punishments is … your owner himself. He is the problem. As a cat, you live only in the present moment and your owner does not seem to understand that every time he punishes you, it is for what you are doing at the time of punishment. Now, when he punishes you, sometimes you washing yourself, sometimes you looking outside or you looking at him. Every sanction punishes different actions and less you understand what he wants to punish. Especially if, when he approaches you, it is to pet you or punish you. If this continues, you won’t take a chance and you will keep your distance at all times. If ever this little trick continues, you might come to defend yourself or become a little wilder so that he does not want to approach.
You turn your attention to the television and you see the face of your idol the Cat Educator who explains another method to how educate a cat (yes, yes it’s another ad to thank him for writing this funny blog!). You meow loudly to attract your owner’s attention. Meow, Meow … darn, it doesn’t work! Desperate, you meow again. You know the one who attracts his attention at night?!
Finally, it works! He approaches you, pets you and decides to listen to your idol who says:
“… and therefore instead of punishing him, why not tell him what behavior you prefer him to adopt instead and reward him when he adopts it? Very often ignoring bad behaviors and rewarding the good ones with his favorite treat (a quarter of a treat, it’s a treat even for cats with little overweight), the cat will soon realize that he has a lot more interest in adopting paid behavior. ”
Your owner turns to you with a little strange smile and he speaks to you. If you had your human-cat translator, you would understand this:
“You’re so gluttonous that it’s going to be easy with you!”
No exception is possible, if you have a dog you certainly must maintain his fur and his body in general. Obviously, several breeds and mixed breeds require more attention. Here are the essential manipulations for daily care.
The daily care of your dog is a matter of good hygiene and it brings many benefits to his overall comfort. If your dog’s claws are too long or knots are more and more present, it is obvious that this causes pain and a risk of injury to your companion.
You can always ask for help from your animal health technician or an experienced toilet stylist. The right people can advise you on the frequency, the techniques and the good tools to use for your dog.
The impact of grooming on your relationship with your doggie
We see our dog as a full member of the family. It is obvious that we wish to maintain a relationship of trust with him. In grooming, the popular myth is: “Brush him all the time, even if he does not like it and he will get used to it.”
What it means is opting for a technique called immersion which consists in creating a situation that disturbs your animal and forces him to give up. After a while the dog becomes “inhibited” in the situation and develops an “acquired distress”. You understand that your dog does not like brushing anymore, but he has simply given up.
When education makes grooming more enjoyable
Instead of “forcing” your dog to grooming, here are some examples of exercises to train your dog to voluntarily participate in the various manipulations and tools needed.
Train your dog to place his head on a chair or any surface and stay there. Very handy for any handling like brushing, cutting claws, cleaning ears and eyes and brushing teeth.
- Take a stool or a coffee table with a cushion or even a chair or the corner of the sofa, and with a treat “lure” your dog by approaching his head towards the surface.
- After a few rewards, your dog will simply come to lay his head down on the chosen surface and saying “chin” and rewarding him immediately.
- Your dog will prove to you that he understood the exercise if when you say “chin” he lays his head down by himself.
- Subsequently, you must work on the “duration”. He should be able to stay on the surface for a few seconds and even minutes. It is important to reward your dog after every efforts and good decisions he takes.
- Finally, you have to work with the “distractions” that in this case are the brush, the claw cutter, the cleaner, and so on. Reward your dog whenever he agrees to stay in place when you groom him.
In addition to offering your dog a physical wellbeing, all the enjoyable moments that you spend with him will positively affect your relationship with your dog.
You think punishing your cat works? When you take out your water spray and your cat comes down very quickly, is that a proof that punishment works? But if he returns, isn’t that proof that the cat has understood nothing?
When I talk about punishment, I am not just talking about physical punishment but also verbal punishment. The simple “no” is a punishment and here are the reasons why it’s totally ineffective with the cat.
When a cat adopts a good or bad behavior it is necessarily because it gives something back to him. He expresses a need. The table is often placed in a central location where the cat has a perfect view of the kitchen, vestibule, living room, corridor, etc. The table becomes a cat tree and an extraordinary watchtower. It is also possible that there is food left over, making it even more interesting.
The easiest way to change a behavior is simply to understand what motivates the cat to adopt it and simply give him an alternative. Instead of punishing your cat because he comes up on the table, wouldn’t it be more simple to put a cat tree close, a little higher than the table, giving him a better watchtower to monitor his territory.
Sometimes the cat gets punished because he climbs on the table when his owner sees him do it. But when he is not there or even when he is present, but does not see his cat go there in secret, there is no consequence. How could he understand that the table is forbidden to him? For him the only constant between each punishment is your arrival. You are therefore the reason why he is punished and not because he is on the table.
The cat lives in the moment. So if you punish him, only a second after a bad behavior and he starts washing himself, your cat will understand that you punish him because he is washing himself.
It is infrequent to punish our cats at the right time. The result is that each time he perceives that he is being punished for something different and it becomes impossible for him to understand why he is being the punished. Moreover, the only thing in common between all these punishments is your presence! Your cat can quickly become anxious to see you approach, not knowing whether he will be flattered or punished. It degrades your relationship with your cat who might try to avoid you, but it can also create a significant stress that will cause even more behavioral problems.
Finally, intensity is important. Punish too weakly and the cat will not desensitize this punishment and you will have to increase its strength gradually until it is no longer effective or it becomes really harmful. Punish too strongly and this will create significant stress or even trauma and you will be associated with something very negative.
Here are some simple tips that could change your cat’s life and yours:
– Ignore bad behaviors and reward good ones;
– Show your cat what behaviors you want him to adopt rather than punish bad behaviors. Use a reward to do it;
– Change the environment according to the cat’s needs. Do not forget that the cat is a territorial animal and that it is defined by his environment. A simple change in his environment can modify everything in his behavior;
– Consult a feline behaviorist to learn about your cat’s needs.
By rewarding your cat, he will be more inclined to adopt a new behavior (or transform it) but, as a bonus, he will be happy to do so, which will reduce his level of anxiety. Teach him not to go on the table when you eating by using treats or games. He will learn that he has more to win by staying on the floor than sitting on the table. Also, give him access to the table when not in use! After all it’s a cat tree you’ve never paid for.
Anyway, you know your cat is going on the table when you’re not home, right?
The holiday season reminds us how good it feels to be with family. This period is also a revival for all and sadly pets will once again find themselves under the Christmas tree and in a shelter cage shortly after. Here are my tips to encourage you to talk openly to your relatives and make the right decisions for your family.
A hasty decision !
Adopting a new member must be well thought out. Have you been thinking about adopting for a long time or a few weeks? Have you taken the time to contact a canine educator and a vet to know the related costs? Do you have at least 3 hours every day to devote to him for the next 10 years?
It is important to be rational and ask yourself if your environment, lifestyle and experience confirms that the arrival of a new companion is justified.
The real cost of a pet
A pet like: dog, cat and rabbit can live easily 10 years and can cost up to $ 20,000 at the end of these ten years. The abandonment of a pet after the holidays is frequent because of the family’s unplanned expenses and, as you know, people usually have less spending money after the holidays.
Pressure from the family
The best advice I can give you is never adopting an animal because your children ask for it. I guarantee that you who will take care of him for at least the next ten years. So adoption must always be in perfect harmony with the family. Everyone must be “OK” and get involved before integrating the animal.
Advertising … too easy
The holiday season brings a lot of expenses and compulsive purchases. Buying an animal is far too simple and impulsive. Just one click on the internet or a visit in a store and you get an animal.
The Christmas period encourages people to buy material goods. On the other hand, animals are not electronic toys, but living beings with needs and emotions.
Healthy education for your children
You are an example for your children and the abandonment of animals, too popular in Quebec, sends a message to the next generation that it is acceptable to integrate an animal and then abandon him when you don’t want him anymore. There are many ways to educate your children at the same time as you while understanding animals better.
Giving rather than taking …
In this time of generosity, give your money to organizations that really need it. You can babysit a pet from a shelter and then consider if a full-time animal is a good idea. That may allow an animal to find a family for life.
In conclusion, more than 500,000 animals are abandoned every year in Quebec. When the holiday season ends the shelters receive a shameful amount of pets. Everyone has to act and think about the wellbeing of animals, who do it so well in return.
Your puppy has one thing in mind and it’s to play, play and play. Interacting with your puppy during playtime is a key step in his social and cognitive development. You will be able to get to know his preferences and teach him good manners. Here are my tips to play with your puppy.
Choosing the right toys
Of course, the first step is to choose the right toys. When it comes to a young puppy, variety is always a guarantee of quality. We need toys that the puppy can discover and recognize. I recommend you to choose toys with different textures, materials and opt for toys with different sounds and sensations.
Remember to choose toys that are big enough for your puppy. The toy should be larger than the mouth of your puppy. If the toy is too small, your puppy could be injured or he could accidentally hurt your hand while you are playing with him. Do not forget to regularly inspect toys and put them aside when wear becomes dangerous for your puppy.
The right way to play with your puppy
Ideally, play often with your puppy, but in a for a short amount of time. You can make 3 to 5 sessions per day for a period of 8 to 10 minutes each time. Adapt yourself according to the energy and the age of your puppy.
Diversify his game environment. This is a good way to help them discover different rooms of the house without making bad thicks. Leave a box with toys for your puppy to enable him to sometimes brun off excess energy by himself.
Prevent puppy destruction
We often have the reflex to redirect the puppy to a toy when he bites us or is attacking a piece of furniture in the house. Did you know that you are encouraging toy destruction ?
Biting and chewing are puppy needs. This very normal step is important and necessary. Remember that there are toys to play and others to chew. Promote appropriate lamellas for puppies or edible toys he can chew.
Each toy must have a reason “to be” and help your puppy to make the right choices depending on his mood and needs.
Games between puppy and child
If your puppy is in contact with children, it is important to teach children to interact properly. Depending on the age of the child, the recommendations may vary, here are some suggestions :
– Ask the child to come to you before playing with the puppy. The goal is to make sure that the puppy is interested in the activity. If the puppy is sleeping or eating, then you can explain to the child that the time is not well chosen.
– Choose the puppy toys that children have the right to use. Long toys are ideal because it is less likely that the puppy will touch the child’s skin.
– Teach children how to train the puppy to sit and lay down on request to help the concentration of puppy during playtime.
– Explain to children that when the game becomes less pleasant, we have to isolate ourselves 10 seconds in a room without the puppy so the dog understands that too intense game will stop the interaction.
– Encourage outside games to stimulate the puppy and make everyone breathe fresh air.
Finally, remember that playing is important all through your dog’s life and is essential for his balance.
Autumn arrived Saturday to Sunday night and we must back time. We are all very happy to win an hour of sleep. Unfortunately, your cat is not aware of the change and will wake you up an hour early. Even though some will wake up by themselves one hour before because of their internal clock. That’s what happens with your cat when you wake up an hour earlier: its internal clock drives him to wake up to its usual time. This is what is called the circadian rhythm.
You probably noticed that your cat always take a nap at the same places every time of the day. This routine is one of the main characteristics of the cat. Like humans, the cat is a usual beast. In fact, the routine of the cat is probably more accurate than ours. Did your cat ever wake you up a few minutes before your alarm? But how does he do? Cats are very sensitive to the degree of brightness during the day, they follow their internal clock. It will also rely on their owner routine. A majority of cats will even change their natural circadian rhythm to adopt ours. Normally, the cat is a nocturnal animal that is active and hunt at night. Many cats sleep at night to take advantage of their caresses in the day. This show the importance how the routine of the owner can have on a cat.
In fact, for many cats, significant changes in their routine will increase their level of anxiety that can cause behavioral problems. It is not uncommon for cats who live with owners that works on various shifts, such as nurses, police officers and students to have those kind of problems. They are simply unable to create a stable routine. This increases the anxiety that create behavior problems as; do there needs out of the litter, may develop obsessive and compulsive problems (like biting wire or licked). It is important to know that these problems may have other causes.
Note that cats should be readily adaptable to minors or means change. But unfortunately, many cats are separated too early from their mother. They have not learned to control their emotions and their anxiety. A cat should stay 14 weeks with her mother. Often they are separate after only 8 weeks. It is precisely between the 5th and 14th week that the cat learns to control his emotions and create his own routine when is mother is away.
That’s why, with cat, major changes must occur with gentleness and always be done with a lot of positive reinforcement. When there’s new member in the family, they should always give a lot of treats the first days. A cat in a new home should discover the home room by room by finding treats everywhere. When you find the needs to change the type of litter your have to do it gradually during a week or two.
Even if you wish to have a stable routine, that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Small weekly changes in the kinds of games and in the environment can be very beneficial for your cat.
So next time we change time, be patient. Your cat will take about 3 days to understand that the routine has changed. Good sleep everyone!
Most people say that if their cat ask to go outside is because they like it. Not necessarily ! It can be dangerous for your cat to go outside. Ask yourself the question and consider the psychological and physical risks associated with it.
To be happy a cat must have an environment that allows it to fulfill most of its needs. But what happen when the environment does not allow him to do so? Well, the cat will be very creative and find ways to meet its needs by itself. So you have to understand that if you keep your cat indoors, you must know his different needs and give him tools to be happy.
It would be easy to conclude that it is better for a cat to go outside, so that he can be exposed to different situations that would allow it to meet is needs (less time and effort for the master). Be outside also represente dangers and significant stress for cats that can create damage. Let’s see what these factors are.
One third of cats living in apartments don’t get enough exercises in a day. Nearly a quarter of cats have behavioral problems related to there environment. However, be aware that by doing some modifications in your home : an environment with little height, cat trees, interactive bowls, games and playing with him (two or three times a day, 10 minutes), will for most cats (not all) manage to fulfill their needs.
If you live in the country and your cat is going outside, that does not present many risks apart from getting hit by a car or being attack by a predator. But it’s a different story in the city and suburbs mainly because of cat overpopulation.
When a cat goes outside, it is mainly because his instinct command him to protect his territory. But he never knows what to expect. Does the neighbour pulled out his cat also and they meet at the border of its territory? Will there be a new cat in the neighborhood? And do not forget the stray cats. Therefore, unpredictable encounters are frequent and many fight can happen. So fight equal stress. That’s why many cats will seek to go outside, but as soon as they are out, they want to enter … and stood … and enter, etc. This also explains why the cats go outside less in the winter. This is not just because it’s cold but because there is less need to protect there territory.
Let’s remember that in town, the dangers and stress imposed by the cat overpopulation and the environment are enormous even if your cat seems happy to go outside. More a cat gets old, it becomes more difficult to change his routine to become an indoor cat.
Finally, remember that every cat is different and that a minority of cats will have difficulty living a life inside only.