10 Tips For Potty Training A Puppy From A Professional Dog Trainer

If you plan on getting a new puppy, then potty training is probably the first thing on your mind. It’s the one part of puppy ownership that none of us enjoy. Failure at it is one of the reasons dogs are surrendered to shelters. The following ten tips for potty training a puppy will help ensure your success. They are the tips I used with my sheltie when I brought him home at eight weeks – he had two accidents (both my … Read more

The 10 Best Anti-Anxiety Dog Beds

iHeartDogs is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. The best anti-anxiety dog beds provide worried dogs a secure and comfortable place to relax when the world becomes too much. Many of these calming dog beds offer high sides to give dogs a cozy den-like place where they can regain a sense of security. They’re a supportive and comfortable tool in dealing with your fur darling’s … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer – Do I Have To Walk My Dog?

Do I Have to Walk My Dog

iHeartDogs is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Walking the dog seems like an essential part of being a dog parent. Yet, many people wonder if they have to be walking their dogs daily. For example, some dogs may dislike walks while others may misbehave while walking in public. So, are walks necessary? Let me start by saying I rarely walk my dogs. As in, … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer – How Do I Get My Dog To Stop Attacking The Vacuum?

Training dog to stop attacking vacuum

iHeartDogs is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. It’s a timeless struggle – dog vs. vacuum. Are you at a point where you dread vacuuming? Or do you schedule vacuuming only when your dog isn’t home? If you relate to either, it’s time to teach your dog that the vacuum is not their mortal enemy. After all, what is it with the vacuum? The main … Read more

From A Dog Trainer – How To Teach Your Dog To Tell You When They Need To Go Potty

Potty training cue

iHeartDogs is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Potty training is often the most frustrating part of having a dog. Sadly, many dogs are surrendered to shelters due to potty training issues, but those dogs just need more training sessions and patience. One of the best ways to avoid accidents is to teach your dog to let you know when they need to do their … Read more

15 Dog Breeds You Think You Want But Probably Shouldn’t Get

There are hundreds of dog breeds in the world, each with their own unique look, purpose and personality. While many people think they want a certain breed, they sometimes find out that the dog they thought looked really cool is actually a lot of work to live with. This is why so many trainers and rescues try to advice first time owner to avoid certain breeds. Many breeds are becoming more popular on looks alone, but end up most often … Read more

Why Does My Dog Growl At Some People And Not Others?

Dogs are always alert when someone new arrives on the scene. Your dog notices new people immediately, but sometimes he growls at them and sometimes he doesn’t. His growl might indicate aggression, defensiveness or just plain anxiety. Why does he have different reactions to people? Does he know something about them that you don’t? No one can sum up all dogs’ reactions and definitely, each case is unique, but we can look at the way dogs perceive their world and … Read more

6 Signs Your Dog Is Living With Fear

While it may be obvious if your dog runs in the opposite direction that she is afraid, dogs have many less obvious signs of fear. You can help ensure your dog doesn’t get to the point where they want to bolt by watching for these subtle signs and reacting to them to make your dog more comfortable. Knowing these signs can also make training easier, as you realize your dog is not being stubborn or ignoring you, but is actually … Read more

Why Dogs Sometimes Bite & What You Can Do To Prevent It

There are many sides to this story, and everyone that interacts with dogs has a responsibility to help prevent bites. This includes learning dog body language (see charts below) and exercising caution, especially when allowing children and strangers to interact with them. Understanding why dogs bite is the first step towards prevention. Why Dogs Bite The answer to this is simple: communication. Dogs don’t speak our language. But they have vocal cues that they use as well as body language … Read more

How To Get your Dog To Leave Something Alone On Command

“Leave it” is one of the most valuable cues we can teach our dogs. It can save them from eating something harmful, from chasing a car or stealing your steak. It’s so important that most dog trainers teach it in puppy and/or beginner obedience. However the easy version of leave a cookie in mom’s open hand or on the floor of the training room is a far cry from what we expect our dogs to do in real life: leave … Read more

Ask A Vet: What Should My Dog Weigh?

We know that obesity shortens lives and impacts overall health. The trouble is when you see your dog every day it is hard to tell exactly what her perfect weight might be. Be aware that “ideal weight” for dogs is not a number on a scale because dogs come in so many shapes and sizes. Purina’s Life Span Study showed that normal weight dogs lived an extra 1.8 years longer than their overweight counterparts. Look at your dog with a critical … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer: Should My Dog Have Choices?

Many dog training classes are full of what you should let your dog do and what you should not let your dog do. You tell your dog where and when he can’t go to the bathroom, when to eat, when to sleep (and usually where), when he gets exercise and when he has to be quiet. We pretty much run our dogs’ lives. But should we? Dogs are thinking animals – with a brain they should be using. They also … Read more

Why Does My Dog Always Put His Backside To Me?

Do you own one of those dogs that greets someone by immediately turning their back to them, often pushing their rump toward the person’s legs? It’s a strange behavior, no doubt, and fairly common. We have had many people ask why dogs do this on our forum, so we went to an animal behavior expert to get the answer. Sherry Woodard CPDT-KA is Best Friends Animal Society’s resident animal behavior consultant. As an expert in animal training, behavior and care, … Read more

Ask a Dog Trainer: How Do I Get My Dog To Stop Barking At Me?

  Does any (or all!) of this sound familiar: Barks for food Barks to go out Barks for attention Barks for you to throw the toy If so, than you probably dealing with a demand barker! Demand barkers are simply pups that don’t have a lot of self-control AND have learned from you that all they have to do to get your attention is to bark at you. Don’t feel ashamed or embarrassed we all do it. Usually it happens … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer – Why It’s OK To Train With Food

This just might be the most debated topic among dog trainers. Even those who are positive-reinforcement or “force-free” trainers, will debate whether food should be used and, if so, to what extent. And of course, those who do not use positive reinforcement have all sorts of reasons they believe you shouldn’t train your dog with food. I am here to tell you IT’S OKAY TO TRAIN WITH FOOD! And, I am not just going to tell you that, but I … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer: How Do I Stop My Dog From Licking Everything?

For some of you it may be hard to understand, but there are dog owners who do not want their dog licking them constantly. It may be because of allergies or they just don’t like it. For others, it has to do with their goals for the dog as a working partner – for example therapy dogs are not allowed to lick the people they visit in hospitals or retirement homes for health reasons. Regardless of why you may not … Read more

12 Tips For Avoiding Dog Fights

If you have ever witnessed a dog fight, you know they are scary. Even if no dogs are hurt, it sounds like they are killing each other – and sometimes they do. While many people have been told what to do if there is a dog fight, it’s best to know how to avoid a dog fight altogether. The following tips can help you stop dog fights before they happen. #1 – Know Your Dog The first and most important thing … Read more

Ask a Dog Trainer – How Do I Choose A Stimulating Toy For My Dog?

A lot of dog trainers and vets recommend people use activity toys and with good reason. They are great for boredom, mild separation anxiety, slowing down fast eaters, increasing problem solving skills and even tiring your dog out (thinking is hard work!). However, activity toys can be pretty expensive and if you don’t know anything about them, you might spend a ton of money on toys that never work for your dog. So, before rushing out and buying a bunch … Read more

Ask a Dog Trainer: Why Does My Dog Go Crazy After A Bath?

Many dogs get what owners affectionately call “the zoomies” after a bath. Something about it gets them riled up and they speed through the house, often stopping to rub all over a bed, couch, blanket, etc. But the question is, why? Tonya Wilhelm, owner of Global Dog Training, has been a dog training specialist for almost two decades and was just named one of the top ten dog trainers in the United States. She focuses on treating dogs holistically, from … Read more

Back To School: 8 Necessities To Make Dog Training Easier

It’s #BackToSchool time and why shouldn’t that include your dog? It’s okay if you got a little lazy over the summer and forgot to work on Sam’s stay or Laura’s leave it, but now that the kid’s are in school, it’s time your dog brushed up on his skills as well. And, just like with your kids, having the right supplies can make learning easier. RELATED:The Best Online Dog Training Classes   #1 – PetSafe Train n’ Praise Potty Training System … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer: How Do I Get My Dog To Fetch?

To a lot of people, fetch is THE game to play with your dog. In fact, some people have a dog so they can go outside, get some fresh air and play fetch. Others like it because it can tire the dog out without costing you too much energy. However, not all dogs naturally fetch. In fact, many dogs, of all breeds, are not “into the fetch.” Or maybe your dog likes to chase the ball, but never brings it … Read more

If Your Dog Only Knows One Command, This Should Be It

You may not want the next AKC Obedience Champion. You may not care if your dog Sits or Downs on command. Of if he jumps on you every time you come in the door. How much (or little) training you do with your dog is your choice. BUT There is one cue that every single dog without exception should know. COME! Why? Because it’s the one cue that can keep them from running away or getting lost, allows them to be … Read more

7 Reasons Why Your Dog Should Learn How To “Go To Bed” On Command

It seems like a cute trick – you tell your dog to “go to bed” and he runs to his bed (mat, kennel, whatever) and lays down. But actually, a “mat” or “bed” behavior is an extremely useful training technique and one that I recommend every dog owner teach their dog. Here are just a few reasons why every dog needs a “bed” behavior. #1 – Teaches self-control The basis of the mat behavior is a prolonged stay. No matter what’s … Read more

Reasons Behind 8 Weird (And Gross!) Dog Behaviors

Dogs do some things that seem pretty weird to us humans…and sometimes it’s things we find downright disgusting or annoying. But why do they do them? Canine behaviorists spend their lives trying to answer that very question. While we may never know for sure about some of these, thanks to research, we definitely know more than we used to about these strange behaviors. #1 – The “Guilty” Face Does your dog look just downright pitiful when you come home and … Read more

7 Tips To Clicker Train Your Dog

Clicker training can seem overwhelming at first: juggling a dog, treats, leash and clicker. Knowing when to click and when not to, remembering all the “rules” – all while trying to pay attention to what your dog is doing so you can successfully teach him something new. Don’t fret! We all struggle at first! The following are a few tips to help you improve your clicker skills to make training easier and faster. Have your own tips that help you? … Read more

Ask a Dog Trainer – Should I Let My Dog Stare?

The idea of this article actually came from an ex-client of mine (ex because I moved states) who begged me to write an article on a topic that causes her a lot of frustration as the owner of two reactive dogs. She is not alone, either. Anyone that owns a reactive dog deals with this anytime they go out. And the main reason is because many dog owners don’t realize that they shouldn’t let their dog stare. What do I … Read more

New Study Shows The Way You Train May Affect Your Dog’s Ability To Learn

Do you have that dog that acts like like a busy bee? Crazy, spun-out of control and just can’t listen for longer than a second? Or maybe you have the dog that just sits there, half asleep, and responds so slowly to your cue that everyone else in class has done 5 repetitions to your one. A new study by the animal experts at Duke Canine Cognition Center has proven what many dog trainers already knew – your training technique … Read more

Train a Trick – The Shuffle

This is one of my favorite tricks – it is super simple to learn but it looks impressive and can be a “gateway” to all sorts of fun tricks. In fact, the first time I taught it was quite by accident. I wanted a straight back and was using my legs to guide him, I ended up with what I call “the shuffle” instead. The Shuffle I have no idea what others call this, it may not even have a … Read more

6 Ways You Could Be Causing Your Dog’s Bad Behavior

When something goes wrong, it’s easy to blame the dog – after all, he can’t speak to defend himself! However, many times we humans inadvertently cause the very things we are trying to stop our dogs from doing. If you’ve made some of the mistakes listed below, don’t worry–we all have! The good news is that you can make some changes, but first, you have to be informed! Here are some ways you may be accidentally encouraging your dog’s most annoying habits: #1 … Read more

Ask A Dog Trainer – Can I Get My Dog To Stop Barking At Other Dogs?

This question is a BIG one. It can be a reason a dog is taken to the shelter or debarked by a frustrated pet parent. It’s also one I get asked a LOT as a dog trainer. Unfortunately, the answer is not as simple as we’d like it to be. There can be a varying range of reasons why dogs bark at other dogs. What we will do today is try to provide more insight into that question so that … Read more

Do Dogs Display “Sibling Rivalry”?

If you own more than one dog, you may have noticed some behaviors that make you think of two siblings fighting over things. For example, maybe you are petting one dog and the other runs up for attention too. I knew someone who used this as a way to train her dogs. If she called the dogs to her and only one came, she would loudly tell the dog that came that he was a good boy and was “getting a … Read more

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The 10 Best Anti-Anxiety Dog Beds

The best anti-anxiety dog beds help stressed dogs find peace by offering them a comfortable & secure spot to relax. Check out our top picks.