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T R A I N I N G Y O U R
SUPERDOG
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G W E N B A I L E Y
T R A I N I N G Y O U R
SUPERDOG
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First American Edition, 2009
Published in the United States by DK Publishing,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York, 10014
09 10 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
SD253—May 2009
Text copyright © Gwen Bailey
Copyright © 2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited, All rights reserved
Without limiting the rights under coypright reserved above, no part of this publication may be
reproduced, stored in, or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by
any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), without the prior
written permission of both the copyright holder and the above publisher of this book.
ISBN 978-0-7566-4978-4
DK books are available at special discounts when purchased in bulk for sales promotions,
premiums, fund-raising, or educational use. For details contact DK Publishing Special
Markets, 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York, 10014 or special sales@dk.com
Color reproduction by Alta Images, Colourscan
Printed and bound by Star Standard, Singapore
Discover more at www.dk.com
Project Art Editor
Francis Wong
Designers
Peter Laws, Steve Woosnam-Savage
Design Assistant
Rebecca Tennant
Production
Rebecca Short
Jacket Designer
Duncan Turner
Managing Art Editor
Phil Ormerod
Art Director
Bryn Walls
Photographic Art Direction
Bev Speight, Nigel Wright
XAB Design
Project Editor
Victoria Wiggins
Editors
Jamie Ambrose, Steve Setford,
Heather Thomas, Rebecca Warren
Editorial Assistants
Lizzie Munsey, Jaime Tenreiro
Production Editor
Maria Elia
Managing Editor
Sarah Larter
Publishing Manager
Liz Wheeler
Publisher
Jonathan Metcalf
Photographer
Gerard Brown
LONDON, NEW YORK, MELBOURNE,
MUNICH, AND DELHI
The right dog for you 10
Choosing a dog 12
Catalogue of popular breeds 22
Building bonds 48
Dog talk 50
What your dog needs 72
Age-related issues 90
Basic training 102
How dogs learn 104
Good grounding 120
Sit 122
Come when called 124
Down 126
Wait 128
Stand 130
Walking on a loose leash 1 132
Walking on a loose leash 2 134
Retrieve 1 136
Retrieve 2 138
Developing the retrieve 140
Introduction 6
Contents
2
3
1
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Advanced training 142
Developing skills 144
Advanced recalls 1 146
Advanced recalls 2 148
Checking in 150
Sit at a distance 152
Chase recall 154
Learning with distractions 156
Showing off 158
Wave 160
Spin 162
High five 164
Play dead 166
Jump 168
Take a message 170
Find the lost toy 172
Housework 174
Carry the groceries 176
Fetch the leash 178
Put the toys away 180
Go to bed 182
Shut the door 184
Best behavior 186
No jumping 188
No snatching 190
Settle 192
No pushing 194
No chasing 196
No barking 198
Accepting handling 200
Doggy dilemmas 202
Solving training problems 204
Troubleshooting 222
Out and about 226
Sports and fun 228
Index 250
Useful contacts 254
Acknowledgments 255
4 5
6
Disclaimer
Every effort has been made to ensure that the information in this book is accurate.
Neither the publishers or the author accept any legal responsibility for any personal
injury or injuries to dogs or other damage or loss arising from the undertaking of
any of the activities or exercises presented in this book, or from the reliance on
any advice in this book. If your dog is ill or has behavioral problems, please seek the
advice of a qualified professional, such as a pet or behavioral expert.
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Introduction
Many owners dream of a owning a happy,
outgoing dog that does everything they ask,
never makes a wrong move, and seems to
know their every thought.
Well, your dog can be like this too. It takes
effort and knowledge, but all the knowledge
you need is in this book. Dogs are living,
thinking beings with adaptable brains that
can be reprogramed into good habits. You just
have to know how to do it, and here you will
fnd all the information you need.
Whether you already own a dog, or are about
to acquire a new adult dog or puppy, this book
will help you to bring out the best in him and
maximize the benefts of ownership. Just like
an operating manual for a car or washing
machine, here are the operating instructions
for your dog. They may seem complex, but the
exercises in this book are designed to be easy
at frst, progressing through to more diffcult
training later as you develop your skills.
Further, this book tells you how to develop
a good working relationship with your dog,
based on love and respect. It also gives you
the necessary guidance to develop an
6Holding the future
Puppies are delightful, but need lots
of care. Habits learned in puppyhood
will last a lifetime. Owners are solely
responsible for their good education.
6Essential lessons
Training your dog to come back when you call,
sit when asked, and walk on a loose leash
will make walks more pleasant and safer.
7Loving relationship
Dogs are social animals, and building a relationship
with your dog, based on love, trust, and respect, is
the essential foundation for positive training.
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awareness of your dog’s needs and abilities,
which will allow you to train him easily.
Knowing how your dog’s mind works, what
his interests are, what he fnds rewarding,
and what makes him feel content at every
stage throughout his life, are essential if you
are to be a good owner and a good trainer.
If you don’t already have a dog, this book
will help you to choose one that will be
right for your lifestyle. If you own a dog
already, you will be able to work out which
types of inherited traits your dog has—
knowledge that will help you to teach him
in a way appropriate to his needs.
Until recently, punishment-based methods
were commonly used for dog training.
Not only is this unacceptable to owners,
who wish to be kind to their canine
companion, it also results in a one-sided
relationship and a worried, anxious,
rebellious, or unwilling dog. Fortunately,
positive methods are now available, and this
book will take you through these modern
methods step-by-step. Through basic training
to more advanced exercises, we will share
with you all of the new secrets that are so
necessary for success, and which, until now,
have not been available in books. gg
6Taking the lead
Leadership and respect are key qualities for an owner.
Respect can’t be gained by intimidation, but is earned
by taking control of events and making good decisions.
7Contented life
A dog that has all of his psychological
and physical needs met will be happy
and relaxed. A fulfilled dog is more
likely to live a long, healthy life.
7Clever dog
Teaching your dog to find lost keys takes
patience and skill, but it is an easy exercise
for dogs, with their amazing sense of smell.
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Once the foundations of good behavior and
basic training are learned, this book will
entice you with ideas for dog sports and
activities you can take part in with your
well-behaved canine friend. Just in case
things do go wrong, the comprehensive
problem-solving section offers solutions to
common dilemmas to get you back on track.
Dogs do not have such complex minds as
humans, and among their most appealing
attributes are their sweet naivety and
inability to show false emotion. However,
because they cannot think things through,
they can become vulnerable in their
relationships with us. We control all resources
and dogs are totally dependent on us for all
their needs. For this reason, we owe it to our
dogs to fnd out all we can about them. This
book shows you, in detail, how and why your
dog does what he does, and how you can use
that knowledge to get him to do the things you
want him to do willingly. The beneft to your
life, and that of your dog, will be enormous,
and, if you carefully work through all the
exercises in this book, you will maximize
your dog’s potential until you own a dog you
can be proud to take anywhere—a dog that is
happy, helpful, and responsive—a superdog!
6Fun times
Teaching fun tricks and exercises will
give your dog an outlet for his mental
energy, as well as providing him with a
way to entertain you and your friends.
6Play energy
Dogs love to play and it is essential that
owners provide an outlet, in the form of games
with toys, to help use up playful energy.
7Useful work
Dogs that can help you with household chores can be
closely involved with your life. This gives them purpose
and helps dogs from working stock to feel fulfilled.
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Gwen Bailey is an internationally renowned
behaviorist and trainer. She lectures worldwide, is
author of many best-selling books on dog behavior,
and is a long standing member of the Association
of Pet Behavior Counsellors. Gwen worked for one of
the UK’s leading animal welfare charities for 12 years
as Head of Animal Behavior. During this time, she
helped rehabilitate thousands of rescue dogs
and set them on the path of good behavior. To do
more preventative work, she formed the successful
company, Puppy School, which provides a network of
positive training classes for young puppies in the UK.
Gwen is a Trustee for Battersea Dogs and Cats Home.
6Sporting activities
Canine sports are entertaining for both dogs and
owners. They bring the challenge of learning new skills
and enable you to meet new people and other dogs.
7Willing partner
Building a strong working relationship
with your dog and teaching him a range
of cues for a variety of actions will
result in a willing friend and partner.
7Self-control
Learning to wait for things you want is an
important lesson for dogs. Those that learn
self-control will be much nicer to live with.
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The right
dog for you
Choosing a dog
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Choosing a dog
Choosing a new dog is exciting and
emotional. We are all prone to choosing
what looks familiar and attractive,
whether it suits us or not. Making the
right choice is more likely, however, if
you take time to consider temperament
and characteristics, and think carefully
about what kind of dog will complement your
own personality. This section will help you to
do that, explaining why different breeds
have different behavior traits
as well as physical forms, so that
you can find a breed that will fit
into your lifestyle. It will also
help you decide whether a puppy
or an adult may be more suitable,
and will enable you to find a dog
that is just right for you.
ACTIVE DOGS
If you choose an energetic dog,
you need to be prepared to be
active yourself if you are to
have a happy life together.
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Choosing a dog
Thinking carefully about your expectations and requirements before you
select a dog will help you to choose one with the right temperament that
suits you well and fts easily into your lifestyle and daily routine.
one. To begin this selection process,
consider your requirements under
the following headings:
How much time do you have?
Think honestly about whether you
have suffcient time for playing
games with a dog, exercising and
5Happy families
Fun-loving, sociable dogs, such as spaniels,
make playful pets. Choosing a dog that fits into
your home easily and matches your expectations
will take some research, but it will result in
a happy dog and a contented family.
grooming him, giving him love and
attention, plus the extra time that
will be needed for keeping your
house clean, as even the cleanest
dog brings in dirt and makes a lot
of mess. Do you have enough spare
time every day for owning a dog?
How much are you at home? If you
add up the hours you spend at home
during an average week, you may
fnd that your lifestyle is not suited
to owning a dog that needs many
hours of companionship each day.
How much can you afford? Bigger
dogs cost more to feed than small
ones, but all dogs need veterinary
care as well as health insurance.
Some pet insurance companies
offer a reduced rate for non-
Examine your lifestyle
Dogs come in all shapes and sizes,
and there are numerous breeds and
different types of character from
which to choose. To make selecting
a dog easier, you should think very
carefully about what you and your
family really want from owning
6Energetic dogs
Dogs with naturally high energy levels need
energetic owners who enjoy exercising with
them on a daily basis. Providing the right amount
of exercise will result in a contented dog.
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pedigree dogs. Dogs with coats that
need clipping or stripping require
frequent visits to the local grooming
parlor. Can you afford all these
costs of dog ownership?
How active are you? Getting an
active dog with lots of energy is not
a wise decision if you are a couch
potato who likes nothing better than
to relax in front of the television all
evening and much of the weekend.
All dogs need daily exercise.
Does the dog have to be good with
others? Do you have children, a
baby (or perhaps you are planning
to have one in the future), elderly
relatives, other dogs, or small pets?
A new dog in your home will have
an impact on everyone in your
family and he needs to be able
to get along with others. Consider
his effect on existing relationships.
What “personality” and character
traits does your ideal dog have?
Once you have decided what you
want from a dog, sourcing the right
dog for you becomes easier. Finding
out what different dog breeds
need in terms of their physical
requirements, assessing their
character type to see if it fts in with
yours, and seeing if their needs
match what you can provide are
quite easy. Take care to research all
these issues thoroughly in advance.
Adult or puppy? You also need to
decide whether to get an adult dog
or a puppy. Puppies are a clean
slate and they are relatively easy to
mold to your ways, although you
need to make sure that you fnd a
healthy, well-socialized one whose
parents and ancestors had a good
temperament. Puppies are lovely,
but they do need an intensive
5Time consuming
Puppies are delightful but, until
mature, they require constant
care and attention for essential
socialization, training, education,
and companionship. Only consider
owning one if you have the time.
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“To make the process of selection easier,
you should think very carefully about what
you and your family want from a dog.”
Selecting by temperament
Many people choose their dog by
browsing through breed books and
finding one they like the look of.
This dog will often appear familiar,
resembling a previously owned
pet, or may even have quite similar
facial characteristics to themselves.
Choosing by looks alone without
considering the behavior traits and
character type of that breed can be
a mistake, and new owners may
end up with a dog who does not
suit them in fundamental ways.
Choosing by temperament is a
much better way to select a dog.
period of training and education,
as well as a large amount of your
time in their frst year to help them
develop into perfect pets. Adult
dogs are already formed,
and the diffcult house-
training, chewing, and
the early education stages
are all over. They are
ready-made dogs and
what you see is what you
get, although they will
eventually adapt to your
ways and routine with
some careful education.
However, you must take
time to get to know them
before you decide.
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Where to fnd your dog
Many different places can supply adult dogs and puppies, but not all are
reputable, so make sure you use a reliable source. Take care to choose
a healthy animal with the right temperament for you and your family.
Adult dogs
The best source of adult dogs is
a reputable rescue center that
carefully assesses the dogs it puts
up for adoption. Assessment is
diffcult, because a dog’s behavior
changes when it enters kennels,
and staff have to predict what it will
be like in a home environment.
Instead of kennels, some rescue
centers place all their dogs with
foster carers. These temporary
owners learn a lot about the dog in
the real-life situation of a home,
and they can usually give you a
very clear picture of what you can
expect from the dog when it comes
to your house to live with you.
As well as rescue
organizations that
cater for all breeds
and crossbreeds,
some specialist rescue
centers concentrate
on a single breed.
If you know what
breed you want, this
may be a good place
to source your dog.
Breeders sometimes
advertise adult dogs.
Beware kennel-raised
dogs, as they rarely
make successful pets.
Finding the right dog for you can
take time, and it requires careful
searching. It is easy to fall in love
with the frst dog or puppy you see,
but avoid making a hasty choice—
you will be spending many years
together, so it is worth being patient
and hanging on until you fnd
exactly what you are looking for.
6The right dog
A good rescue center will assess the dogs
in their care before putting them up for
adoption, making it easier to choose one
who is right for you. Don’t be tempted to
take home the first appealing dog you see.
4Be prepared
You should be prepared for the rescue
center to assess your suitability as an
owner. They may want to meet all your
family and ask some personal questions
about your home, work, and lifestyle.
7Get to know him
At the rescue center, spend
some time getting to know
a new dog before deciding,
as this may reveal unwanted
traits or could confirm that
he is the right dog for you.
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4Pleased to meet you
Well-socialized puppies should be interested in
strangers and happy to see them. Avoid any who
are nervous, move away, or are more interested
in playing with each other than meeting you.
Acquiring an adult dog via a
newspaper advertisement is not
advisable, as you will only have a
limited time to get to know the dog.
What’s more, you may not be told
the truth about the dog’s history,
and you may be put under pressure
to take the dog immediately.
Puppies
Finding a breeder who produces
healthy, well-socialized dogs with
good temperaments is diffcult.
Research the breeder’s reputation,
and come away without a puppy if
you do not like what you see. Check
that the puppy has been reared at
home, and not just brought into the
“It is worth being patient and hanging on until
you find exactly what you are looking for.”
Sources to avoid
Never buy a puppy if you cannot
see the conditions in which it was
raised or meet its mother, or if it
has been kept in a kennel, barn,
outhouse, or stable. Steer clear of
pet shops, and breeders who want
to exchange puppies for cash at the
roadside. Avoid outlets selling many
different breeds, because they may
obtain dogs from places where they
are farmed. The puppies may look
normal, but they often have health
problems and poor temperaments.
6The right environment
Always ask to see the puppies with their mother,
and check that she is friendly. The “nest area”
should be clean, with a larger “toileting area”
that is lined with sheets of newspaper.
house for your visit. Be suspicious of
large kennels where many puppies
are produced and little effort is put
into socializing, particularly if the
emphasis is on winning show prizes.
Try to fnd a breeder with a pet dog
that has had all the required health
tests for that breed, who has bred
relatively few litters, and who raises
the puppies at home and gives them
all the socialization and habituation
they need to grow into well-adjusted
adult dogs. When choosing, go for
puppies that show an interest in you
and readily come to greet you.
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The wolf within
Domestic dogs are descendants of the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus). Although
they are very different from their predecessors, many traits have been
retained, and selective breeding has accentuated those we fnd useful.
4Ancestors
Intelligent and resourceful, the Gray Wolf is very
different from the domestic dog, but has passed
many character traits down to our pets.
Teamwork
Gray Wolves, the ancestors of all
pet and working dogs, have evolved
into cooperative hunters of large
prey. Although they will catch small
animals, including mice, rabbits,
and even fsh, they are capable of
working together as a pack to bring
down much bigger prey, such as
deer, moose, elk, and caribou.
In order to hunt as a team, wolves
need to live together to build up
and maintain bonds between them.
As a result, they need to be social
and cooperative. These are the
traits that make domestic dogs so
successful as workers and pets.
Wolf becomes dog
There are many theories as to how
wolves became domesticated, the
most probable being that dogs
evolved over many generations
from wolves that lived at the edges
of human settlements, on the waste
dumps of villages. Over the years,
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Tracking Watching Chasing
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47Different forms
Domestic dogs look very different to their
ancestors, and behave very differently too. Their
bodies have been transformed to suit the work
they were bred for, so that all sorts of shapes,
sizes, colors, and coat types are available.
Likewise, their character traits and propensities
for different behaviors have been altered to
produce a variety of attitudes and characters.
Predation sequence
The full behavioral
pattern of a hunting
wolf enables it to
catch and kill the prey
it needs to survive.
These behaviors have
been accentuated in
different breeds to
produce working dogs
for varying purposes.
those with the least fearful genes
thrived alongside people, and they
gradually became a distinct species.
They probably closely resembled
the village dogs that can be seen in
many developing countries today.
Selective breeding
From these frst village dogs, we
have gradually developed all the
different types and breeds that
exist today, using a technique
known as selective breeding. This
involves breeding only from the
dogs that have the particular traits
desired. To assist them in a range
of tasks, breeders selected for
various parts of the dogs’ hunting
sequence (below). For example, to
produce dogs that were effcient
vermin hunters, the “catch and kill”
part of this behavioral sequence
was required, and dogs that proved
to be good at this were selected for
breeding. To develop good herding
dogs, breeders chose dogs that
excelled at the chase element of the
hunting sequence, producing a dog
that loved to chase but without the
Terrier’s strong desire to catch and
kill. As well as producing dogs with
different behavioral traits, breeders
bred dogs with different
morphologies, or body types. Large,
powerful dogs were required to
guard livestock and homesteads, so
the biggest dogs were selected for
breeding. Conversely, to produce
companion dogs, the smallest and
cutest dogs were selected. Recently,
the advent of dog shows and the
rise in the number of dogs kept
solely as pets have resulted in dogs
being selected for appearance only.
Most breeders now produce dogs to
win prizes at shows. The winners
are the dogs that most closely
resemble the breed standard—an
arbitrary list of characteristics
chosen by a committee of breeders.
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“Dogs evolved over many generations from
wolves that lived at the edges of human
settlements, on the waste dumps of villages.”
Catching Killing Consuming
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Breed groupings
By tracing the history of breeds back to their beginnings, it is possible to
fnd out what tasks the dogs were originally developed to perform. This
allows us to categorize dog breeds according to their intended purpose.
they adapt to domestic life, and the
problems that they encounter are
likely to be the same. This helps us
choose which dog is best suited to
our lifestyle. As breeding becomes
more selective, gene pools become
smaller, and this results in a wide
variety of inherited diseases in dog
breeds. Always check carefully
health certifcates and bloodlines
when purchasing a puppy, to ensure
good health for the life of your dog.
The dogs in each of the categories
below share common behavior
traits, for which they were bred
selectively to make them good at
their jobs. When kept as pets, they
will all show similarities in the way
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Dogs to help hunters
These dogs were bred to help
hunters shooting game in the field.
They typically enjoy retrieving, and
are usually very willing to please.
They make very good pets, but
their large size and high energy
levels mean that they are not
suitable for owners
who do not have
the same desire
to exercise.
Dogs to kill vermin
Bred to catch and kill, these tenacious,
feisty breeds are popular as pets due
to their small size, but owners
should be aware of their propensity
to be predatory towards small
animals. They lean towards
using aggression to solve
problems, and need good early
socialization and training. These
dogs have strong personalities,
and are great characters.
Dogs to help shepherds
Shepherd dogs fall into two groups: the
popular herders and the less-well-known
flock guardians. Herding dogs have high
energy levels and a powerful desire
to chase. Those bred to herd cattle
usually have a stronger will than
sheepdogs, but both enjoy a
close bond with their owners.
Flock guardians were bred
to live with sheep, and are
close-bonding and protective.
Companion dogs
For generations, companion dogs have
been bred as pets. They are sweet-
natured and gentle, and their small
size makes them easy to care for.
Only a few of the breeds often
classed as companion dogs
were developed purely
for this purpose; most
were originally bred as
watchdogs, or for some
other type of work.
Dogs to hunt
Hunting dogs fall into two
categories: those that hunt
by sight, and those that
follow trails. While good
natured and easy going,
they are independent and
less willing to please
than other dogs. They
can cause problems on
walks, as their desire to
hunt is still very strong.
Other working dogs
Many dogs were bred for
other purposes, such
as to guard, pull
sleds, or fight.
Each breed has a
temperament to suit
the work it was required
to do; always investigate
a breed’s origins before
buying, to see if it will
make a suitable pet.
Golden Retriever Jack Russell Terrier
Chihuahua
St. Bernard Beagle
Border Collie
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Carriage dogs
Dalmatians were bred to
run alongside or under
carriages, and to make a
fashion statement. Since
the breed was developed
specifically for such a
purpose, it is easy to train
the dogs to behave like
this for demonstrations.
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This active little dog originated
in Mexico as early as the 9th
century. The Chihuahua’s most
likely ancestor is a dog called
the Techchi, from the
Toltec civilization.
The introduction of
hairless Oriental genes
has made the modern
Chihuahua smaller
than its predecessor—
Chihuahuas are the
smallest of all dogs, and
come in both long-haired
and short-haired varieties.
Due to their diminutive
size, Chihuahuas are easily
damaged, making them
unsuitable for clumsy adults
or families with toddlers. They
need good early socialization
and protection from being
overwhelmed when living in
a world of giants.
Originally an ancient breed
from the island of Malta, these
small dogs have been bred
as companions for many generations.
The result is a happy little dog, who
makes an ideal pet for those owners
who enjoy caring for his long coat.
Maltese dogs require regular visits to
the grooming salon, and the hair on
their head must be clipped or tied to
enable them to see out.
Chihuahua
Maltese
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Feisty, lively, loyal
Exercise Minimal
Grooming Minimal
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Friendly, fun-loving, playful
Exercise Minimal
Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping
Short-haired Chihuahua
Small dogs
Small dogs are ideal for people
who live in small spaces or urban
areas, or who do not have the time
to exercise a dog for several hours a
day. They still need exercise and
stimulation, but are usually content
to receive less than their larger
canine cousins. These little dogs
often do not think of themselves
as small, however, which makes
them great as pets, but can also get
them into trouble with bigger dogs.
The temptation is for owners to
protect them by keeping them away
from large dogs who may harm
them, but, if they are properly
socialized, small dogs can hold their
own, and many
develop effective
strategies for
dealing with larger
dogs. It can be tempting to treat
small dogs as toys, but owners must
be careful to ensure that all of their
dog’s needs are met, and they are
given every opportunity to indulge
in natural canine behavior.
Dachshund roll over
Submission is a useful strategy for dealing
with larger, assertive dogs as long as the
bigger dog poses no real threat.
Sweet but spirited
A large dog in a small
body, this West Highland
Terrier looks sweet, but
has a strong character.
Most small dogs tend to be easier to care for and keep clean, are cheaper
to feed, and usually need less exercise than larger members of the
species. Although they may be small, they usually have big personalities.
Fringed tail
Large,
erect ears
Long-haired Chihuahua
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The smallest of all the poodles,
the Toy was bred from the
Standard Poodle, whose
original function was as a duck
retriever. This graceful, athletic little
dog is clever, easy to train, and benefts
from a lively household with plenty of
stimulation. Coat care is an important
consideration for prospective owners.
Pomeranians originated in
Poland and Germany, from
spitz-type Arctic sled dogs.
Miniaturized by selective breeding, they
retain the extrovert character of their
ancestors, and excessive barking can be
a problem. Their thick coat can make
them excessively hot in warm climates.
The Miniature Pinscher was
bred in the 19th century, to kill
rats on German
farms. Small and feisty,
this little dog has a
terrier’s hunting instincts.
Miniature Pinschers need
good socialization as
puppies and plenty
of attention and
stimulation in
their home.
Toy Poodle
Pomeranian Miniature Pinscher
Size 1–3kg (2–6lb), 16–22cm (6–9in)
Character Intelligent, good natured, lively
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Active, intelligent, good watchdog
Exercise Minimal to moderate
Grooming Daily, extensive grooming
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Active, protective, clever
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal
This dog originated in Yorkshire,
England in the 19th century,
where it was bred by coal
miners and mill workers to kill rats. It is
very much a terrier, and many Yorkshire
Terrier owners are taken by surprise
when their small companions unveil
their feisty nature if they are
threatened. Yorkshire Terriers
need plenty of early socialization
to make them feel content and at
peace with the world around
them, and also to prevent them
becoming too protective of
their owners. They are active,
intelligent, and playful, and
will readily learn any
exercise you wish to
teach them. A Yorkshire
Terrier’s coat does not
shed, and requires daily
grooming to stay in good
condition. The hair around
their eyes needs to be clipped
or tied up to enable them to see
where they are going.
Yorkshire Terrier
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Lively, feisty, courageous
Exercise Minimal to moderate
Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping
Energetic dogs
Although small, Yorkshire Terriers are
very active. They need the freedom to
run and play, especially when young.
Tan and
black coat
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The name Poodle comes from
the German word pudel, which
means to splash in water—the
ancestors of the modern
Poodle were bred in
the 15th century to
hunt water birds.
Later, the French
developed the Poodle
into three sizes, the
Miniature being the
middle size. Miniature
Poodles are clever and
agile and made good
circus performers.
Nowadays, they are
commonly owned by
agility and obedience
competitors, and they
make very energetic,
smart workers. The
Poodle’s pom-poms
In the 16th century, bichon-type
dogs travelled with Spanish
sailors to Cuba, where they
developed into today’s Havanese and
became the Cuban national dog. With a
Miniature Poodle
Havanese
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Intelligent, agile, good-natured
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Playful, good-natured, sociable
Exercise Minimal to moderate
Grooming Daily grooming
The exact origins of the Bichon
Frise are unclear, but bichon-
type dogs have been traced
back thousands of years. Popular for
many centuries in France and Spain,
the Bichon Frise was developed on the
island of Tenerife. Its characteristic
friendly temperament and its happy
disposition come from a long history
of being bred as a companion. This agile
little dog is sweet-natured and lovable.
Bred in Boston, Massachusetts,
in the mid-19th century from
bulldogs, terriers, and French
Bulldogs, the Boston Terrier has
retained very little of its
true terrier nature.
These dogs are
sweet-natured and
sociable, but their
shortened nose can
lead to snoring, as
well as breathing
problems during
exercise.
Bichon Frise
Boston Terrier
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Playful, good-natured, sociable
Exercise Minimal to moderate
Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Gentle, good-natured, enthusiastic
Exercise Minimal to moderate
Grooming Minimal
lighter weight and more silky coat than
the Bichon Frise, these dogs are better
suited to a warmer climate and were bred
for centuries as companions. As a result,
they have a happy, friendly temperament,
making them ideal pets. They beneft from
having the hair on their head clipped or
tied up to enable them to see out.
were once thought necessary to protect
the working dogs’ joints from cold water,
but most pet poodles now have a simple
clip, trimmed to the same length
all over.
Long, soft
double coat
Dense,
curly coat
Plumed tail
Small,
compact feet
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Bred by Tibetan monks and
Chinese Emperors, the Shih
Tzu is named after the lion
it was thought to resemble. Without
correct socializing, these intelligent,
alert little dogs can be bad tempered.
The hair on their head needs to be
clipped or tied up, and their shortened
faces can lead to breathing diffculties.
The Papillon’s ancestors have
been featured in paintings
since the 16th century. The
name Papillon, or “butterfy dog”, is
taken from the way its large, long-
haired ears resemble a butterfy’s wings
when held erect. These are energetic
little dogs and, although dainty, they are
robust and active. They are intelligent
and easily learn what is required.
The Parson Russell Terrier was
created in the 19th century to
run with hounds and fush foxes
from their lairs. Less common than the
shorter-legged Jack Russell, the Parson
is recognized by Kennel Clubs and holds
a true pedigree. Like most terriers, they
are quite predatory, and need socializing
with cats from an early age. Most cannot
be trusted around small pets. They are
friendly and outgoing if socialized well
with people and other dogs, but can
be diffcult and confrontational
if this is not done adequately.
Parson Russell Terriers
are intelligent and
active, and they
suit a home
where there is
always plenty
of activity.
Shih Tzu
Papillon Parson Russell Terrier
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Intelligent, independent, alert
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming; occasional clipping
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Intelligent, lively, sensitive
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Feisty, active, tenacious
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
Jack Russell Terrier
The shorter-legged Jack Russell
Terrier is not recognized by Kennel
Clubs. This dog comes in many forms
and varieties, and it benefits health-
wise from a larger gene pool. In
temperament and character, it is very
similar to its taller cousins and needs
careful socialization and education.
Muscular
hind legs
Broad skull
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Active pets
Border Terriers are happy
to go out for long walks but
also happy to sit on your lap.
Border Terriers were bred in
Scotland in the 18th century, to
kill foxes and rodents. Their
small size and happy attitude make
them popular pets. Although they need
careful socialization with cats and other
dogs, they are easily controlled.
Fun-loving and easy to live with, Border
Terriers readily adapt their exercise
levels to those of their owners. They are
bright little dogs who love human
company, although they are also
independent enough to be left alone.
Border Terriers do well at agility, being
fast and supple. Naturally curious,
they make very pleasant companions if
they are well socialized and educated.
Border Terrier
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Friendly, active, biddable
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal plus periodic stripping
With a less fattened face than
the King Charles Spaniel,
which is a different breed, the
Cavalier King Charles has a longer
nose, as well as a fatter skull. Sadly,
inherited diseases abound within the
small gene pool for this breed. Cavaliers
are true pets, having been bred for
centuries to be companions, and make
lovely family dogs if you can fnd a
healthy one.
Bred by monks in Tibetan
temples and monasteries
to be watchdogs, these
dogs will let you know when they
detect intruders. Strong-willed and
intelligent, they need good training
and education. Lhasa Apsos have a
thick coat designed to keep them
warm in a cold climate, so require
extensive grooming.
A working terrier from as
far back as the 17th century,
this playful dog originated
from the Scottish Highlands and
islands. Bred to hunt foxes, rats, and
rabbits around the cairns (rock piles), it
still retains some of its predatory nature,
and care is needed when it is around
small pets. Early socialization with cats
is also advisable. Lively and sociable,
Cairn Terriers need to be kept busy.
Cavalier King Charles Lhasa Apso
Cairn Terrier
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Friendly, sweet-natured, playful
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Alert, active, vocal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Extensive daily grooming
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Active, playful, sociable
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal plus periodic stripping
Stiff outer
coat
Darkish,
dropped ears
Tail thicker
at base
Long, silky
coat
Straight
forelegs
Fairly
narrow skull
Dense,
straight coat
Erect ears
Protective
outer coat
Tail carried
over back
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This dog was developed in
Germany in the 19th century
from the Standard Schnauzer.
Used as a watchdog and controller of
vermin on farms, the modern-day breed
still has a predatory streak, and likes to
warn its owners of intruders. Miniature
Schnauzers are intelligent and playful
and make good family pets.
West Highland Terriers were
developed in the 18th century
from the white offspring of
Cairn and Scottish Terriers. They were
bred to hunt small prey, so be wary
around small pets and cats. Take care
to fnd a healthy dog as skin complaints
are a common problem.
They make very good pets
for strong-willed owners.
Possibly bred originally by the
Chinese, pug-like dogs rapidly
spread throughout Europe in
the 16th century. Modern-day Pugs
have a small gene pool, which leads to
inherited health problems, including
some breathing diffculties and snoring.
They are popular despite this, because
of their excellent temperament.
Miniature Schnauzer West Highland Terrier
Pug
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Lively, playful, sociable
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming plus regular clipping
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Feisty, active, vocal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily brushing and regular clipping
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Friendly, outgoing, good-natured
Exercise Minimal
Grooming Minimal
Dachshunds were originally
developed in Germany in the
20th century to hunt badgers.
They come in two sizes—miniature and
standard—and in three coat types.
Dachshunds frequently suffer from bad
backs because of their long spines and
short rib cages, and slipped discs are
common. Care should be taken when
lifting these dogs, and children
should be discouraged from
rough play. Happy,
laid-back personalities
make Dachshunds
gentle companions.
Dachshund
Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ), 6–9 in (16–22 cm)
Character Placid, playful, easy-going
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal
A varied coat
Dachshunds come in
three different coat types.
The long-haired variety
requires more extensive
grooming than the
other two.
Smooth-haired Dachshund
Wire-haired Dachshund
Silky ears
Thick,
wiry coat
Prominent
eye ridges
Long beard
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Medium dogs
For people who do not have room
for a large dog but feel they need
something more substantial than a
small breed, a medium-sized dog is
ideal. These dogs are at home in
most moderately-sized houses.
Medium-sized dogs are usually
robust enough to play with children,
and are not easily damaged by play
or other activities. While they
require less feeding than larger
dogs, their exercise needs vary—
certain breeds actually require
more activity than some of their
bigger cousins. Compared to large
dogs, medium-sized dogs are easier
to handle when excited, and less
likely to pull you over. Their
compact size also reduces household
cleaning, and there is less chance of
their wagging tails knocking things
over. Health insurance
is usually less
expensive than
for larger breeds.
Just right
More substantial than a small dog but less
work than a large breed, medium dogs, like
this French Bulldog, can be ideal companions.
Good family pets
Less fragile than small
dogs, medium-sized
dogs, such as this
Fox Terrier, can be
perfect pets for
active owners.
Medium-sized dogs are less of a handful than the larger breeds, but have
more of a presence than smaller dogs. They are big enough not to be
easily trampled, yet not too big for small spaces.
Shetland Sheepdogs were
developed in the 17th century,
to herd livestock in the
Shetland Islands of Scotland. They were
originally a cross of the larger Rough
Collie with smaller breeds. Modern
Shetland Sheepdogs have a thick coat
that can cause overheating. They need
early, thorough
socialization to
counteract their
natural wariness.
These playful
and sweet-
natured dogs
will be very
loyal to
trusted
owners.
The origins of French Bulldogs
are unclear, but they are likely
to have been the smaller
progeny of English Bulldogs taken over
to France in the 19th century. French
Bulldogs have been bred as companions
for generations and, as a result, they are
good tempered, fun-loving extroverts.
Their fattened
faces can cause
breathing
diffculties
and also
snoring.
Tibetan Terriers were bred as
watchdogs by monks in Tibet
and are probably the ancestors
of similar breeds such as the Shih Tzu
and Lhasa Apso. These dogs are lively
and vivacious, but need careful
socialization and early training to be
well behaved. Tibetan Terriers are also
very vocal, as might be
expected from their
heritage, and
this needs to be
kept within
boundaries.
Shetland Sheepdog French Bulldog Tibetan Terrier
Size 13–15 lb (6–7 kg), 14–15 in (35–37 cm)
Character Timid, gentle, sensitive
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Extensive daily grooming
Size 22–28 lb (10–12.5 kg), 12 in (30–31 cm)
Character Affectionate, outgoing, good-natured
Exercise Minimal
Grooming Minimal
Size 18–30 lb (8–13.5 kg), 14–16 in (36–41 cm)
Character Intelligent, vocal, enthusiastic
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Needs daily grooming and regular clipping
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Of the two Corgi breeds, the
Cardigan and the Pembroke
Welsh, the latter is more
common due to its connection with the
British Royal Family. Both breeds were
developed in Wales to herd livestock.
This required a strong will, and owners
need to be prepared to win challenges
and set guidelines. Good socialization
will overcome the dogs’ natural reserve,
and ensure that defensive nipping at
heels does not become a problem.
Corgis are playful and active, and
beneft from lively owners.
Corgi
Size 24–37 lb (11–17 kg), 11–13 in (27–32 cm)
Character Intelligent, protective, loyal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal
Cardigan Corgi
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
Staffordshire Bull Terriers were bred in England in
the early 19th century for fghting other dogs in pits
after bull and bear baiting were outlawed. They were
bred to be determined and courageous—traits that they retain
today. Early and careful socialization with other dogs is needed
to ensure they remain friendly. Being playful and eager, they
make excellent companions for children.
Staffordshire Bull Terriers need an active family
that can channel the dogs’ excess energy into
constructive play with toys.
Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Size 24–37 lb (11–17 kg), 14–16 in (36–41 cm)
Character Enthusiastic, playful, energetic
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
The two Fox Terrier breeds, the
Smooth and the Wire, share the
same origins: they were
developed to unearth foxes gone
to ground during hunting. They
also display similar characteristics
because they did not become two
Fox Terrier
Size 15–18 lb (7–8 kg), 15–16 in (39–40 cm)
Character Feisty, lively, impulsive
Exercise Moderate to high
Grooming Minimal
distinct breeds until the early 20th century.
These clever, affectionate dogs are agile,
active, and playful, with high levels of
energy. They are easily aroused and ready
for a scrap, should they feel one is needed.
Fox Terriers make good pets for owners
capable of handling their strong terrier
nature and their predatory instincts.
Smooth Fox Terrier
Wire Fox Terrier
The Beagle is an ancient breed,
originally created for hunting
hares and rabbits. Modern
Beagles retain the desire to track and
hunt, which may cause control problems
on walks. Beagles have a happy
disposition, and readily get on with
others—human or animal.
Beagle
Size 18–31 lb (8–14 kg), 13–16 in (33–40 cm)
Character Sociable, independent, vocal
Exercise Moderate to high
Grooming Minimal
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There are two breeds of Cocker Spaniel, English and
American (not shown). Cocker Spaniels were
originally bred in England to hunt woodcock, being
small enough to fush the birds from their hiding
places. English Cockers went to America with the
early settlers, where the breed was developed
into the American Cocker. These dogs can be
willful, so owners need to set boundaries
for good behavior early on. Relatively
small in size and with a happy disposition,
the Cocker Spaniel has been one of the
most popular breeds for many years.
Whippets were created in
the mid-19th century from
Greyhounds and terriers, for
hunting rabbits and small game. These
sight hounds have a strong desire to
chase. This tendency, combined
with their fast speed, makes
them diffcult to control on
walks. At home they are
calm and affectionate.
Whippets need
protection in
cold weather
because of
their thin
coats.
Cocker Spaniel
Whippet
Size 29–33 lb (13–15 kg), 15–16 in (38–41 cm)
Character Biddable, active, affectionate
Exercise High
Grooming Regular brushing, especially the ears
Size 28–30 lb (12.5–13.5 kg), 17–20 in (43–50 cm)
Character Gentle, calm, affectionate
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Moderate
Developed in the Brittany region of northwest France
in the 19th century, this breed was formed from a
mixture of English Setters and Pointers, together with
local spaniels. The smallest of the hunt-point-retrieve breeds,
it was originally used to aid hunters on rough shoots. Brittanys
are clever and quick to learn, and need owners who are able to
channel their considerable energy into useful work. They are
very affectionate and biddable, and are happy to work at any
task required. Brittanys make
good companions for
lively families.
Brittany
Size 29–33 lb (13–15 kg), 19–20 in (47–50 cm)
Character Intelligent, active, keen
Exercise High
Grooming High
Ready to go
Cocker Spaniels
are full of life.
They need owners
who can give them
the opportunity
to use up their
considerable
energy as well as
providing training
and leadership.
Long,
lean muzzle
High-set ears,
rounded at tip
Muscular
hind legs
Feathered
chest
Long, silky
ears
Fine, dense
coat
English Cocker Spaniel
Soft, medium-
length coat
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Springer Spaniels were
developed from Spanish
Spaniels in the 19th century to
fush out or “spring” game birds, and
return them to the handler once shot.
They are friendly and sociable, and it
is unusual to fnd one with a bad
temperament. Springers are easily
trained, taking direction readily and
accepting whatever role they are given.
While they may seem like the perfect
dog, their energy levels are higher
than many people can cope with.
Owners need time for long walks
and games. They do best in a
busy home where there is
lots of excitement and
interest for them.
Springer Spaniel
Size 49–53 lb (22–24 kg), 19–20 in (48–51 cm)
Character Energetic, playful, enthusiastic
Exercise Very high
Grooming Moderate
Originating from China and
sharing a common ancestor
with the Chow Chow, the
Shar Pei was bred for a variety of
uses, including guarding, herding, and
hunting. The fashion to exaggerate the
wrinkles makes for appealing puppies,
but it can result in infected skin folds
and cause eyelashes to turn in against
the eye—a painful condition requiring
surgery. Shar Peis need good
socialization as puppies.
Bulldogs were bred in the
17th century for bull- and
bear-baiting. When these
sports were outlawed, pug genes were
introduced to produce a shorter, squarer
dog with a squashed face. These features
have been exaggerated over the years.
As a result, breathing is compromised
in Bulldogs and they suffer heat stress,
snore, and cannot exercise much. The
wide head means that they are unable
to be born naturally. Known for their
friendliness, these natural clowns show
great affection towards their owners.
Bull Terriers were created in
the 19th century, when Bulldogs
were crossed with English
White Terriers to produce a white
“Gentleman’s Companion”. Modern
Bull Terriers come in a variety of colors.
Bull terriers are energetic
but prefer to play rather than run.
Tug games are their favorites, and
owners need to be careful to remain in
control. Bull terriers suit busy, active
families who can
give them plenty
of stimulation.
Shar Pei
Bulldog
Bull Terrier
Size 35–44 lb (16–20 kg), 18–20 in (46–51 cm)
Character Aloof, reserved, loyal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Time is needed to care for deep skin folds
Size 51–55 lb (23–25 kg), 12–14 in (30–36 cm)
Character Sociable, courageous, loyal
Exercise Minimal
Grooming Minimal
Size 53–62 lb (24–28 kg), 21–22 in (53–56 cm)
Character Feisty, persistent, loyal
Exercise Moderate to high
Grooming Minimal
Willing worker
Springers are tireless
and always ready for
more. They make good
pets for busy, active
families who have
time for long walks,
lots of games, and fun.
Feathering on legs
Silky coat
Exaggerated
skin folds
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Large dogs
Larger breeds usually make far
more demanding pets than smaller
dogs. They not only require you to
devote more time and energy to
them, but they are also likely to
result in considerably higher bills.
That said, there are many benefts
from keeping a big dog, and many
people opt for a larger breed.
Unlike small breeds, large dogs
won’t get under your feet without
you seeing them. They also offer a
powerful deterrent to burglars and
muggers, and they can help your
children to feel safer. Many large
dogs are easier to train than their
smaller cousins, and a well-trained
large dog looks very impressive.
They are often faster and more
energetic than small dogs—traits
that are appreciated by owners who
enjoy dog sports such as agility, or
have other active pursuits in which
their dog can participate.
Born to run
Dalmatians were bred to run. They need to be
taught a good recall as puppies, and have safe
areas where they can run freely as adults.
Low but large
The Basset Hound is
a big dog with short
legs. Holding on to a
Basset Hound that
wants to run takes
a lot of strength, so
these dogs need to
be taught not to pull
from a very early age.
Owners of large dogs need lots of spare time and energy for exercising,
playing, grooming, and general maintenance. Ample room is needed, both
inside the house and outside, as well as areas for long walks off-leash.
Border Collies were bred in the
early 20th century for sheepdog
work on the English and
Scottish borders. A good demonstration
of sheep herding often convinces
people that these dogs have an innate
capacity to understand humans; in
reality, they need training just like
other dogs. However, Border
Collies are quick to learn and
willing to take instruction,
and they establish close
bonds with their owners.
Lots of early socialization
will ensure that their
reactivity does not lead
to noise phobias or
fear-related problems.
Border Collie
Height 31–49 lb (14–22 kg), 18–21 in (46–54 cm)
Character Intelligent, reactive, close-bonding
Exercise Very high
Grooming Moderate
Herding
Border Collies are still popular as
sheepdogs and excess working
dogs often find their way into pet
homes. Selective breeding has
enhanced their desire to chase, and
they will quickly learn to herd and
chase whatever moves around
them. If they are to be kept as a
pet, these instincts need to be
channeled into games with toys to
prevent them from chasing after
joggers, cats, livestock, and cars.
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Siberian Huskies were once
essential to the Chuckchi people
of Siberia, whose culture was
based around being able to travel
long distances by
dog-sled. These dogs
have the stamina to
run all day, and they
need considerable
daily exercise. As
a result, this is a
Basset Hounds were bred for
hunting rabbits by scent. They
are easily distracted by animal
trails, and may be
diffcult to recall
from a scent. While
this causes control
problems on
walks, they
are popular
pets due to
their happy
disposition
and sociable
nature.
Siberian Husky Basset Hound
Size 35–60 lb (16–27.5 kg), 20–24 in (51–60 cm)
Character Active, intelligent, independent
Exercise Very high
Grooming Extensive daily grooming needed
Size 40–60 lb (18–27 kg), 13–15 in (33–38 cm)
Character Sweet-natured, sociable, independent
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
Bred in the 16th century from a
mixture of the Polish Lowland
Sheepdogs and local Collies in
Scotland, Bearded Collies were used
for sheep and cattle herding. Modern
Bearded Collies retain a strong desire
to chase and herd, so owners need to
channel the abundant
energy of these
fun-loving dogs into
play-chases with
toys. They are
sensitive and
need good early
socialization.
Almost unknown in Australia,
the Australian Shepherd Dog
was developed on ranches in
the western US in the 19th and 20th
centuries from a variety of sheepdogs.
These dogs have a strong work ethic
and need plenty of stimulation and
activity. They also need owners with a
will strong enough to match their own.
Rough Collies were bred to herd
sheep in Scotland. Although
still interested in chasing and
play, today’s Rough Collies are intelligent
and learn quickly. Careful socialization
is needed to develop a relaxed adult, as
their timid nature readily leads to fears.
Rough Collies thrive in quiet homes with
gentle, relaxed, thoughtful owners.
Bearded Collie Australian Shepherd
Rough Collie
Height 40–66 lb (18–30 kg), 20–22 in (50–56 cm)
Character Playful, active, sensitive
Exercise Very high
Grooming Extensive daily grooming needed
Height 35–70 lb (16–32 kg), 18–23 in (46–58 cm)
Character Intelligent, strong-willed, active
Exercise Very high
Grooming Moderate
Height 40–66 lb (18–30 kg), 20–24 in (50–60 cm)
Character Sensitive, loyal, gentle
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Extensive daily grooming
breed for serious enthusiasts who can run
the dogs across country in carts or on bikes.
The predatory nature of Siberians means
that they cannot be let
off-leash near livestock
and other animals.
A lively, active
home is a must
for Siberians.
Long,
low-set
ears
Forelegs
are well
feathered
Weather-resistant,
medium-length coat
Long, dense,
fine coat
Thick,
bushy tail
Tough,
cushioned pads
Abundant, smooth,
shiny coat
Muscular
thighs
Strong,
deep chest
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This ancient breed is thought to
have originated in Dalmatia,
Croatia. Bred to run with
carriages in England and with fre
engines in the US, it is a natural
athlete, and may become
boisterous if denied the
opportunity to exercise.
Dalmatians are generally
easy-going, but may
sometimes be willful
and obstinate.
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Airedales were developed in
the 19th century in Yorkshire,
England, to hunt otters and
badgers, and also to act
as guard dogs.
Modern day
Airedale
Terriers are
protective and
need plenty of
socialization to be friendly,
especially around other dogs.
They are playful and good with
children. Best suited to owners
who have experience and a strong
character, Airedales are not easy to
train or to handle when in diffcult
situations. Since they have the
hunting instincts of a terrier,
they should not be trusted
with unfamiliar cats or other
small pets.
First bred in Germany in the
15th century to help on duck
hunts, and later developed by
the French, this is the largest of the
Poodles. The curly coat, which kept the
dog warm in cold water during retrieves,
does not shed and needs a lot of care.
Quick to learn, affectionate, and playful,
Standards beneft from active owners.
German Short-haired
Pointers were created
in Germany in the 19th
century from Spanish and English
Pointers, mixed with Foxhounds
and other good scenting dogs.
These excellent, all-purpose
gun dogs are capable of
hunting, pointing, and
retrieving. The German
Short-haired Pointer is agile
and active, with plenty of
stamina, and owners need to
provide plenty of stimulation
and exercise. Fortunately,
being naturally playful,
its boundless energy is
easily diverted into games
with toys. These dogs are
good-natured, willing to
please, and easy to train.
Airedale Terrier Standard Poodle
German Short-haired Pointer Dalmatian
Size 44–50 lb (20–22.5 kg), 22–24 in (56–61 cm)
Character Intelligent, courageous, loyal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Requires periodic stripping of dead coat
Size 45–70 lb (20.5–32 kg), over 15 in (38 cm)
Character Intelligent, good-natured, active
Exercise High to very high
Grooming Needs daily grooming and regular clipping
Size 44–66 lb (20–30 kg), 24–26 in (60–65 cm)
Character Sociable, energetic, playful
Exercise Very high
Grooming Minimal
Size 50–55 lb (22.5–25 kg), 20–24 in (50–61 cm)
Character Independent, outgoing, sociable
Exercise Very high
Grooming Minimal
Steady nature
Airedales are loyal to owners and make
good family dogs if they are well trained
and socialized as puppies.
Straight,
parallel
forelegs
Short,
glossy, and
spotted coat
Tail curves
upward
slightly
High-set
tail Long hair
covering ears
Hard, dense,
wiry coat
Straight
forelegs
Compact
feet
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Boxers were developed in
Germany from the English
Bulldog and the Bullenbeisser,
a now-extinct breed used to hunt bears,
wild boar, and deer. They were bred to
chase and seize prey, holding on until
hunters arrived. Not surprisingly, the
modern descendants of these dogs are
courageous and strong-minded enough
to take on opponents if necessary.
Usually, however, Boxers are loveable
clowns. The name Boxer comes from
their tendency to “box” with their front
paws during play, which they may fnd
easier than play-biting due to their
fattened faces and undershot bites.
Boxers make great family dogs, being
playful and fun-loving with children,
and are a consistently popular dog
around the world for this reason. They
need plenty to do, and are best-suited
to active families who want to
include their dog in all aspects
of their busy lives.
Early socialization is
essential for Boxers,
especially with
other dogs, to
Boxer
Size 55–70 lb (25–32 kg), 21–25 in (53–63 cm)
Character Exuberant, playful, friendly
Exercise Very high
Grooming Minimal
Children’s playmate
The Boxer’s readiness to play makes it
an excellent companion for children,
who help to use up its considerable
energy reserves and provide the lively,
high-spirited interaction that really suits
this breed. As with all dogs, rules for
games must be taught to both parties
to avoid play getting out of hand.
On guard
Boxers can be distrustful of strangers, and are
easily aroused by intruders. This characteristic
can be useful when there is a real threat to the
safety of the family. However, careful training is
needed to ensure that this trait does not get out
of hand and result in unwanted aggression.
ensure that they grow up friendly. Also
essential are consistent guidelines for good
behavior, implemented early in life so that
their exuberance and strong character are
kept within bounds. Strong-willed owners
who use positive training methods will get
the best out of this engaging breed.
Boxers are intelligent and relatively
easy to train, but they can be sly and
prone to disobedience if rules for good
behavior are not frmly established.
Because of their fattened face and
undershot jaw—characteristics
selected for in order to give them
a strong biting grip—Boxers can be
prone to dribbling and snoring.
Short, shiny,
smooth hair
covering
extensive
deep chest
Strong,
straight
forelegs
Undershot
jaw
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Labradors originated on the
island of Newfoundland,
Canada, in the 15th century,
where they were used by fshermen to
retrieve and pull in nets from the water.
In the 19th century, they were taken to
England and developed as gun dogs to
assist with duck shooting.
Labradors are one of the most popular
breeds, being versatile, well-balanced,
and easy to train. Often kept as pets or
gun dogs, their good temperament and
biddability has also made them the
breed of choice for assistance dogs,
helping people with disabilities to
perform everyday tasks more easily,
and giving them independence. The
powerful scent-detecting abilities of
Labradors have made them useful
in the fght against drugs, and
Labrador Retriever
Size 55–79 lb (25–36 kg), 22–24 in (55–62 cm)
Character Biddable, sociable, playful
Exercise Very high
Grooming Minimal
Guide dogs
Purpose-bred to be steady, careful
workers, guide dogs are trusted with
guiding blind people around obstacles
and waiting at roadsides until it is
safe to cross. Training takes several
years but, once complete, the guide
dogs give their handlers a new-found
independence and freedom.
Plenty of energy
Labradors need lots of off-leash running to
keep them fit. Training a recall allows you
to let them run freely and safely. Early
socialization with other dogs and careful
training with other animals and livestock
will create a dog that is a joy to take out.
Playful character
A pet Labrador’s enthusiasm and energy need to
be channeled into games with toys to prevent
unacceptable behavior. Their love of retrieving
will mean that they get tired long before you do.
they also help to stop food, narcotics, and
explosives from getting through customs.
Finding bodies, alive or dead, is another
invaluable task they are trained to
perform by frefghters and police offcers.
As pets, Labradors are playful and
energetic. They do best in homes where
there is lots of activity and plenty to do.
They adore food, and stealing from the
trash can or kitchen countertops will need
to be prevented and discouraged from the
outset. Weight control is also important, as
this is a breed that will eat far more than it
needs, especially when neutered.
Labradors need careful training when
young to make sure that their natural
enthusiasm does not get them into
trouble. Fortunately, this is
easily done, since they are
always willing to please
and very amenable to
doing as you ask.
Thick tail
is otter-like
in shape
Round, compact
feet
Medium-sized, hazel eyes
with gentle expression
Wide, powerful chest
with barrel-shaped
rib cage
Forelegs straight
from shoulder
down to ground
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Hovawart means “Guardian of
Property” in German, which
gives a clue to the origins of
these clever dogs. As well as guarding,
this ancient breed was used to herd
and help with livestock. Hovawarts
are good at protecting the family
from intruders, but careful
socialization and training is
needed to ensure that
they are tolerant of
strangers. Hovawarts
learn readily, and are
loving and loyal to
their owners.
The different varieties of Belgian Shepherd are named
after the areas from which they came. They are all of a
similar type, and were bred to herd sheep and guard
farms. These very sensitive dogs need lots
of early socialization and habituation to
humans, animals, and every day life. They
are easy to train, loyal, and devoted to their
owners. Belgian Shepherds do well with
thoughtful owners who are good leaders,
and who can provide plenty of activity.
Hovawart Belgian Shepherd
Size 55–90 lb (25–41 kg), 23–28 in (58–70 cm)
Character Intelligent, loyal, protective
Exercise Very high
Grooming Moderate
Size 61–63 lb (27.5–28.5 kg), 22–26 in (56–66 cm)
Character Reactive, intelligent, protective
Exercise Very high
Grooming Depends on variety
Bred in Germany from the German Pointer and a
variety of other breeds, the Wire-haired Pointer was
developed as a versatile, rugged gun dog. More wary
of strangers than their short-haired cousins,
they need careful early socialization. That
said, they are affectionate towards their
owners, willing to please, and able to
learn tasks with ease.
German Wire-haired Pointer
Height 60–70 lb (27–32 kg), 24–27 in (61–68 cm)
Character Biddable, energetic, playful
Exercise Very high
Grooming Minimal
The same breed?
In their home country of
Belgium, these four varieties
are considered one breed. Other
countries have registered them
as four separate breeds. In
reality, they are so closely
related that puppies with
all four different types of
coat can be found in
the same litter.
Tervueren
Malinois
Groenendael
Laekenois
Deep chest
Forelegs held
close to body
Long,
bushy tail
Prominent
chest with
prolonged
sternum
Straight
forelegs
Harsh, flat
outercoat
High-set,
stiff ears
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Originating in England in the mid-19th century, the
Flat-coated Retriever was bred as a general-purpose
gun dog. Its gentle, playful, attentive nature makes it
an ideal family pet. Flat-coated Retrievers are eager to learn
and always ready to retrieve. Their activity levels are high, and
they need plenty to do to use up surplus energy, but they are
not clumsy or over-boisterous. Flat-coated Retrievers are poor
guard dogs, since they are happy to welcome anyone. This makes
them ideal for novice and sociable owners. Willing and able to
please, Flatcoats make happy workers and loving companions.
Flat-coated Retriever
Height 55–79 lb (25–36 kg), 22–24 in (56–61 cm)
Character Gentle, affectionate, outgoing
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
The Golden Retriever was frst
bred in the 19th century from a
variety of sporting dogs to
produce a robust, powerful gun dog
with a gentle and biddable nature.
Today, its good temperament is the dog’s
most important feature, which explains
its enduring popularity as a family pet.
Golden Retrievers are playful and
energetic, but not so active that they
Golden Retriever
Size 60–79 lb (27–36 kg), 20–24 in (51–61 cm)
Character Sociable, playful, kind
Exercise High
Grooming Daily grooming required
require round-the-clock activity. Happy to
sleep and rest at home, they have bags of
energy outside and plenty of stamina to
work or play all day. Owners of Golden
Retrievers will need lots of time for
dog-centered activities, games, and fun.
Being cheerful and obliging, Golden
Retrievers make good companions for
children, provided that the dogs are
socialized with them from an early age
and taught good manners.
Ever willing to undertake tasks and easy
to train, Golden Retrievers make ideal
working dogs. They are regularly used in
detection and therapy work, and as
assistance dogs such as guide dogs.
Plenty of energy
Golden Retrievers have boundless
energy for running, walks, and dog
sports. They suit busy homes
where they can be included in
all aspects of family life.
Strong
hindquarters
Well-feathered
tail
Strong, straight legs
are well feathered
with long hair
Ears
set level
with eyes
Dark-
pigmented
lips
Wavy coat;
may also
be flat
Dense, shiny,
fine coat
Short, flat tail is
moderately feathered
Bringing back
A well-bred Golden Retriever can
easily be taught to fetch. Take care
to obtain puppies from biddable
parents, since some of show
strains are too possessive. Early
training and plenty of play will
ensure that your dog returns the
objects you throw, so that he
does the running rather than you.
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This popular breed was created
in Germany in the late 19th
century to herd sheep and
protect property. At the end of World
War I, it became known as the Alsatian
in the UK, the name change refecting
the anti-German feeling in the country
at the time. Only 50 years later did the
breed regain its correct name, and these
dogs are sometimes still referred to as
Alsatians by mistake.
German Shepherds are quick, clever
learners, and their intelligence is highly
valued by those who work them.
As well as carrying out
police-dog work, they
often act as guards for
German Shepherd Dog
Size 62–97 lb (28–44 kg), 22–26 in (55–66 cm)
Character Intelligent, protective, loyal
Exercise Very high
Grooming Daily, especially for long-coated varieties
Coping with the chasing instinct
Playful and energetic, German Shepherd Dogs
love to chase. Channel this strong desire into
games with toys, especially if your puppy is
growing up with young children. Otherwise,
inappropriate chase games can become a bad
habit, which will be difficult to break later.
Police dogs
German Shepherds are highly valued
by police forces worldwide. Their
reactivity and quick arousal assists
with detaining criminals, and their
natural protectiveness helps to keep
the handler safe. Their desire to chase
makes them excellent at catching
running criminals, and they are strong
enough to stop and detain a person
until the handler can catch up. Yet with
the right socialization and removed
from a conflict situation they can also
be peaceful and pleasant, which is
important for public relations. Their
powerful scent-detection abilities
allow them to track suspects and also
lost persons, as well as to find items
that may be used as evidence.
the military and private security
companies. They are also used for
search-and-rescue work, and in scent-
detection roles to locate hidden narcotics,
explosives, and even human remains.
German Shepherds make good pets for
owners who like to train and play, and they
are good with children. Extremely loyal,
they will protect both
family and property
from any perceived
threat. Early socialization
will ensure that these
dogs are well adjusted and
do not become fearful or
unnecessarily aggressive.
New owners should research
their puppy’s origins to check
that it is
from stock with a good temperament.
Interbreeding for show success has resulted
in structural weaknesses and hip dysplasia.
Scrutinize all documentation on testing for
inherited diseases before purchasing.
These dogs form close bonds with their
owners, and are happiest with
people who provide strong
leadership together with lots
of fun and friendship. Feed
their strong desire to work,
such as by training them
to help out with everyday
chores. This will give them
a purpose and strengthen
your shared relationship.
s
Tail is densely
feathered with
long hair
Chest is deep, with
long, well-formed ribs
Muzzle is straight and
strong, with firm lips
Hard, straight,
outer coat with
dense undercoat
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The Giant Schnauzer was
developed from the Standard
Schnauzer in the 19th century
for cattle herding and droving, and
also for guarding. These large,
impressive black dogs have been
used by the police and military
to keep order. As pets, Giant
Schnauzers are playful,
good-natured, and
protective. Their beard
collects dribble and
needs frequent
washing to keep it
sweet-smelling.
Giant Schnauzer
Size 70–77 lb (32–35 kg), 24–28 in (60–70 cm)
Character Intelligent, loyal, protective
Exercise High
Grooming Daily grooming, regular stripping/clipping
Ridgebacks were frst bred in South Africa in the late
19th century, and found great success as
hunting dogs in Zimbabwe
(formerly Rhodesia). Their role
was to chase lions in packs,
cornering the quarry until the
hunters could dispatch it.
Like their ancestors, modern
Ridgebacks love to chase.
This can lead to control
problems on walks, and
Ridgebacks quickly learn
to chase inappropriately,
being fond of fast-moving
objects and animals. These
dogs are affectionate and
loyal to owners, and very
good with children in the
family. They need plenty
of early socialization
with strangers and other
dogs. They love to eat, so
food stealing is high on
their list of priorities.
The Dobermann was
created in the late
19th century by Louis
Dobermann, a German tax
collector who needed a dog
for protection. Dobermanns
retain their protective
nature, but are easily
trained and controllable
if they have strong-
willed owners. This
highly intelligent
breed needs plenty
to do to use up
its considerable
energies.
Rhodesian Ridgeback
Dobermann
Height 65–85 lb (29.5–38.5 kg), 24–27 in (60–69 cm)
Character Independent, discerning, protective
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
Height 66–88 lb (30–40 kg), 24–28 in (60–70 cm)
Character Intelligent, alert, protective
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
The ridge
This breed’s unique feature is
the ridge of hair running the
wrong way down the back.
Tapered near the tail, it ends in
two whorls over the shoulders.
Robust, slanting
upper thighs
Broad, flat
skull
Muscular
neck
Long,
coarse
beard
Lean neck
Well-
proportioned
chest
Well-arched toes
Short, dense,
sleek coat
Glossy
black and
tan coat
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Weimaraners were developed in
Germany as a general-purpose
gundog in the early 19th
century. They are still used as gundogs
today, but they are also popular as pets.
These fun-loving, extrovert dogs need
active families who can include them in
all aspects of daily life. Their vast
reserves of energy and stamina need
channeling into useful work or games
with toys. Regular free running and daily
off-leash exercise are essential. Strong
behavioral guidelines should be set early
on; fortunately, Weimaraners are easy to
train. Good socialization
will ensure that they are
friendly to strangers and
other animals.
Weimaraner
Size 70–86 lb (32–39 kg), 22–27 in (56–69 cm)
Character Energetic, exuberant, playful
Exercise Very high
Grooming Minimal
This breed probably originated
in France’s Bordeaux region as
a dog for fghting bulls, bears,
and other dogs in pits. Subsequently
mellowed by selective breeding, the
Dogue de Bordeaux today has a less
aggressive nature. Nevertheless, it still
requires determined owners and early
socialization, especially with other
dogs. Due to the shape of its jaw
and lips, this dog will snore
and drool copiously.
The Akita is an imposing dog,
developed for bear hunting and
dog fghting in the 17th century.
Bred to show little emotion, it is diffcult to
know what they are thinking, and hence
predict what they may do next. They need
an experienced owner who can handle
their strong character and earn enough
respect to be listened to. Akitas can be
diffcult with other animals and need
careful socialization. Clean, quiet,
and calm, they make a loving,
loyal guard for their families.
Dogue de Bordeaux Akita
Height 79–99 lb (36–45 kg), 23–27 in (58–69 cm)
Character Courageous, loyal, protective
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
Height 77–110 lb (35–50 kg), 24–28 in (60–70 cm)
Character Aloof, protective, independent
Exercise High
Grooming Extensive daily grooming required
Long-haired Weimaraner
Powerful breed
Akitas are large and powerful. They
do not have much interest in play after
puppyhood and their independence
makes them harder to train. Safe,
enclosed areas away from other dogs
and animals are needed for exercising.
Hard coat
with fine
undercoat
Stout,
straight
tail
Powerful
chest
Strong, straight
forelegs
Strong, sleek,
short coat
Firm, compact feet
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Active dog
Weimaraners have high energy levels and
need plenty of exercise to feel content. As
well as lots of play and activity, they need
safe, open areas where they can run free,
especially when they are young.
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First bred by the mayor of
Leonberg, Germany, in the 19th
century by crossing Saint
Bernards, Newfoundlands, and a few
other breeds, Leonbergers
became popular as
family guard dogs
and companions.
Though large,
they are gentle
around
familiar
children.
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Extra-large dogs
Owners of extra-large dogs need
dedication. It will defnitely be more
expensive to kennel, insure, and
feed these dogs, and they will need
more time for general care and
maintenance. Transport can be a
problem with outsize breeds, and
often necessitates the purchase of
an extra-large car.
Surprisingly, extra-large dogs do
not usually need as much exercise
as some of their smaller, more agile
cousins. They prefer to take things
easy, and quickly get tired from the
effort of moving such a large frame.
Sadly, these giants tend to be more
short-lived than smaller breeds.
Outsize dogs need a lot of house
room, and may get in the way or feel
too restricted in a small home. They
also need a large yard so they can
get up to speed and slow down
again before reaching the fence.
Giant size
If not well socialized or properly trained, an
extra-large dog such as the Great Dane can
pose a significant physical risk to others.
Water dog
Newfoundlands are
used for rescue at sea.
Their large size keeps
them warm in cold
water, and their great
strength enables them
to pull struggling
people to the shore.
Outsize dogs are for experienced, committed owners who can cope with
a dog that often weighs more than they do. These breeds are impressive
statements, but they make great demands on time and money.
These dogs were originally
bred to work on Swiss farms,
where they pulled carts,
drove cattle, and acted as guard dogs.
Naturally protective, they need good
socialization as puppies. Bernese
Mountain Dogs are powerful when
pulling, so plenty of early leash
training is necessary to gain control.
Rottweilers were bred in
Germany to drive cattle and for
protection. They need strong-
willed, experienced owners to keep
their protective instincts in
check. Rottweilers are quick
to learn, and self-assured.
Leonberger Bernese Mountain Dog
Rottweiler
Height 75–110 lb (34–50 kg), 26–31 in (65–80 cm)
Character Calm, protective, affectionate
Exercise High
Grooming Daily grooming required
Height 88–97 lb (40–44 kg), 23–28 in (58–70 cm)
Character Calm, protective, sociable
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming required
Height 90–110 lb (41–50 kg), 23–27 in (58–69 cm)
Character Protective, loyal, alert
Exercise High
Grooming Minimal
Long muzzle with
distinctive markings
Abundant, long,
glossy coat
Coarse, flat black
coat with tan
markings
Strong forelegs with
round, compact feet
Rough,
shaggy
coat
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By crossing English Bulldogs and English Mastiffs,
English gamekeepers in the 19th century developed
the Bull Mastiff to help them catch poachers. Today,
these powerful dogs retain their protective nature, and
plenty of early socialization, together with thorough training
by strong-willed owners, is necessary to rein in
these instincts. Despite this, Bull Mastiffs
are affectionate with familiar children.
Bull Mastiff
Size 90–130 lb (41–59 kg), 25–27 in (64–69 cm)
Character Courageous, protective, loyal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal
This dog was developed
in Newfoundland,
Canada, to help
fshermen haul nets and carts.
The thick coat can cause
problems in more temperate
climates, and Newfoundlands
often seek out water to cool
themselves down. They need to
pant a lot to lose excess heat,
and have a strong tendency
to drool. They have a gentle,
sociable temperament and
make good family dogs.
Although its exact origins are
unclear, this ancient breed was
originally developed to hunt
wild boar. Today’s Great Dane is a gentle
giant, one of the tallest of all breeds. It
is good-natured and sociable, but care is
needed when off-leash, because the
desire to chase other animals
is strong. Good socialization
and training is needed
when young.
Bred in the 17th century by the monks at the Hospice
of St. Bernard in Switzerland, this dog helped to
rescue travelers stuck in snow. Its large size refected
the need to stay warm when working for hours in low
temperatures. Saint Bernards are gentle giants, good-natured
and devoted to their owners. Often too hot in
temperate climates, their panting and
excessive dribbling can be a problem.
Newfoundland
Great Dane
Saint Bernard
Height 110–150 lb (50–68 kg), 26–28 in (66–71 cm)
Character Calm, sociable, affectionate
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming required
Height 110–176 lb (50–80 kg), 31–36 in (79–92 cm)
Character Playful, independent, affectionate
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Minimal
Height 110–201 lb (50–91 kg), 24–28 in (61–71 cm)
Character Gentle, sociable, loyal
Exercise Moderate
Grooming Daily grooming required
Keeping cool
Newfoundlands overheat
rapidly if they exercise too
much, so short walks are
preferable to long marathons.
Finding a place where they
can swim regularly will keep
them fit, cool, and content.
Fast runners
Surprisingly fast,
Great Danes need
large areas where they
can exercise freely.
Well-spaced,
powerful legs
Wide,
deep chest
Deep-set eyes
Thick, firm lips
Very deep
chest
Short, square
muzzle
Short, dense
coat
Broad, massive
head
Very
muscular neck
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Mongrels and crossbreeds
Mongrel dogs are a mixture of
different breeds, while crossbreeds
are a mixture of two pedigree dogs.
Mongrels are common in countries
where dogs are allowed the freedom
to roam, and where it is unlikely
they will be neutered. They are less
common in more heavily populated
countries where stray dogs are not
allowed, and are quickly collected
by dog-control offcers. Where
breeding is taken very seriously,
mongrels are usually neutered.
Crossbreeds are usually the result
of an accidental mating between
two pedigree dogs, but they can be
a deliberate cross
to try to produce a
dog with a particular temperament
or coat type. Crossbreeds are usually
given a hybrid of the two breed
names; for example, a cross between
a cocker spaniel and a poodle would
be called a Cockerpoo.
5Inherited traits
The desire to chase and play with toys is an
inherited trait. How the dog is raised will
affect which behavior traits are developed.
4Labradoodles
To breed assistance dogs
that do not shed their
coat or trigger people’s
allergies, Labradors have
been crossed with Poodles
to produce Labradoodles.
These dogs are popular as
pets too, and demand for
them is increasing. Due to
the mixture of genes,
various physical forms and
types of coat occur.
Canine combinations
You can usually guess at least one of the parents
of a mongrel or crossbreed from the clues given
by their temperament and body shape. If choosing
an adult, what you see is what you get. Find out
what character traits the dog has before buying.
Mongrels and crossbreeds are unique in physical form and temperament.
Each dog is different from the next, and you have to wait until they
mature to see how puppies will turn out and how big they will grow.
5Hybrid vigor
Many mongrels and
crossbreeds are healthier
than pedigrees, because
their genes come from
parents that are less
likely to be related.
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Building
bonds
Dog talk
What your dog needs
Age-related issues
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Dog talk
Dogs are not humans in furry skins,
but a different species from us. If we are
to be good dog owners, we need to be
aware of the differences between us,
and appreciate how the world looks from
their perspective. This section will help
you to understand how dogs think, and
their limitations compared with our own
sophisticated abilities to process thoughts.
Discover how dogs “talk” to each other,
and to us, and how we can
communicate with them using
their language. It also explains
how to earn your dog’s respect
and develop a happy, trusting
relationship that will provide the
framework for creating a well-
behaved, well-trained animal.
GOOD RELATIONSHIP
Helping children to build a mutually
trusting relationship with their dog
is beneficial for their development,
and also for the dog’s well-being.
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How dogs think
Dogs are highly social, but have less sophisticated thought and reasoning
abilities than humans. Knowing how dogs think helps us to understand
them and have reasonable expectations of what they can achieve.
be certain they feel the same way as
us, since we cannot ask them, their
behavior in many situations is so
similar to ours that it is reasonable
to assume that this is the case. It is
5Warm welcome
Dogs share our social behavior of greeting
returning loved ones. Having a dog to welcome
you home from a hard day’s work is one of the
joys of dog ownership. However, make sure he
does not learn to jump up at you (pp.188–9).
7Lacking logic
A dog will look at the
floor repeatedly when
seeing a treat drop,
even though there is
a table in the way.
because of these shared similarities
in social ability and emotional
richness that we invite dogs into
our homes and they make very
successful pets. However, because
they often seem so human, it is easy
to make the mistake of treating
them like small children and
expecting them to behave
accordingly. In reality, dogs have
a much less sophisticated brain
than humans, and because their
ancestors evolved to survive in
a different way, their motivations
are not the same as ours.
Social relationships
Dogs’ social patterns are extremely
similar to our own—for example,
they greet returning members of
their pack enthusiastically, they
mourn when they lose loved ones,
and they work hard to maintain
relationships. In a dog’s social life,
there are clear parallels with the
ways in which humans behave with
their own families.
Shared emotions
Dogs also seem to share many
human emotions, including
happiness when they are having
fun, loneliness when they are
separated from their pack, fear
when they feel threatened, and
resentment if they are told off
continuously. Although we cannot
5Infectious mood
An owner’s moods are
often reflected in their
dog—a happy owner
will have a happy dog.
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4Acute senses
Using their very
keen senses, dogs
can often tell when
their owners are
about to get up
even before they
consciously decide
to move. Thus many
owners claim their
dogs understand
them perfectly and
know exactly what
they are thinking.
Different brains
Although the dog’s brain is similar
to that of a human, it is relatively
smaller and lacks the neocortex,
which is the part of our brain that
is responsible for reasoning,
language, and all the high-level
functions that are unique to
humans. Dogs have a good memory,
but their reasoning capacity is quite
limited when compared with ours.
Dogs are acutely aware of human
movements and body language, our
moods and facial expressions, but
they fnd it really diffcult to learn
words. Rather than enabling
language, as the human brain does,
a dog’s brain houses large sensory
areas, which detect information
about the world around them,
and evolved to help their wolf
ancestors to hunt successfully.
Thus dogs are not small people
in furry skins—they have a much
smaller capacity for reasoning and
thought than us, in addition to a
different way of seeing the world.
Knowing this can help us to have
more realistic expectations of their
abilities and not ask too much when
trying to train them and get them to
cooperate with us. Helping our dogs
out when they do not understand
what we require of them is vital,
as is giving them the beneft of the
doubt in those instances when we
are not sure if they are being
stubborn or just do not know what
they are supposed to do.
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“Dogs are not small people in furry skins—
they have a much smaller capacity for
reasoning and thought than we do.”
4Slow to reason
In this situation, a dog’s first reaction is to try
to pull the ball through the fence. In contrast,
a human would realize that it is easier to open
the gate in order to pick up the ball.
What do dogs feel?
Do dogs feel guilt, remorse, or
hatred? Unfortunately, there is
no way of asking them, and no
scientific experiments have been
done on this. However, it is safe
to assume that although they do
possess basic emotions, they are
unable to process them in a human
way. Therefore, they do not hold
grudges or plot their revenge.
They don’t fake emotions for a
higher purpose, and if they seem
pleased to see you, it is because
they genuinely feel that way.
It is this inability to show false
emotion that makes them so
appealing in a modern world
filled with deception.
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Canine senses: smell and sight
Dogs experience the world in a very different way to humans.
Understanding how they perceive their surroundings allows us to train
them in a way they fnd easy to comprehend.
This is because they can detect
scent on a level we can only
imagine. Sniffng a clump of grass
can tell them which other dogs
inhabit the area, their age, sexual
status, state of health, and how
long ago they passed by. This is
possible because they have an
extraordinarily large epithelium
(membrane) inside the nose, which
collects scent molecules and sends
messages to the brain. In addition,
the part of a dog’s brain that is
responsible for scent detection is
four times larger and more complex
than in humans.
Dogs also have something called
a vomeronasal organ in the roof of
their mouths. This allows them to
taste and smell scents that they fnd
Scent
Dogs live in a world of scent, while
human beings inhabit a world of
sight. We see the world, but dogs
smell it. If you watch someone with
a dog entering an unfamiliar room,
the owner will look around to gain
clues as to what goes on in there
and what may happen in the future.
The dog, however, will put his
nose to the ground and move
around in order to gather
similar information.
Dogs are intensely interested
in sniffng, whether it is a smell
on the grass, a new object, or the
head or rear end of another dog.
7Super scenter
A dog’s anatomy is designed for
maximum scent detection and
processing, with millions of cells
in the nasal cavities, a large
area of the brain dedicated
to scent, and an extra
organ in the roof of
the mouth.
6Information collection
This Basset Hound uses his nose to gather
information about other dogs in the area, finding
out which could be friend, foe, or a potential mate.
6Crime fighters
Humans have long capitalized on dogs’ superior
sense of smell. Here, a sniffer dog checks
packages for illegal substances.
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“We see the world,
but dogs smell it.”
nasal
epithelium
frontal sinus
cerebal cortex
vomeronasal
organ
tongue soft palate
windpipe
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especially appealing, particularly
those that help them recognize
mating partners.
In some breeds—for example,
those that are required to do a job
that involves tracking or scenting
game, such as hounds or gun
dogs—we have accentuated this
ability through selective breeding.
The Bloodhound is probably the
breed that is best at scent detection.
Dogs can track humans and
animals using the trail of skin
cells shed from the body and
smells caused by disturbance of
any vegetation. Dogs are also used
to detect explosives, drugs, food,
dead bodies, and cancer cells, and
they can do this better than any
human invention.
Sight
Dogs see less well than humans.
Although they can see in color,
the colors they can detect are
limited to blues and yellows, and
they cannot see reds and greens.
This is why they fnd it diffcult to
see a red ball on green grass, and
will often use their sense of smell to
search for it instead.
Similarly, dogs cannot distinguish
textures and detail as well as we do,
but they are better at seeing in the
dark, due to a special structure in
the eye called the tapetum lucidum.
This refects light back into the
dog’s eye, enhancing sight in low
light levels, and it explains why
dogs’ eyes “glow in the dark” when
light hits them. Dogs are also able
to detect movement better than
we can, and many breeds have
better long-distance vision.
6The dog’s view
Dogs can see some colors, but detect texture
and detail less well. Their night vision is superior
to ours and they detect movements easily.
6The human’s view
Humans can see texture and detail well and
have a much broader range of color vision
than dogs do.
7Sight hounds
Some dogs have been bred to hunt by sight.
They can detect movements easily and see well
at long distances. This Lurcher scans the field
for anything that could be chased or hunted.
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Amazing scent detection
Researchers have estimated that
dogs have nearly 220 million cells
in their noses that detect scent,
covering an area about the size of
a handkerchief, compared to
five million in humans, which is
equivalent to the size of a postage
stamp. In scientific experiments,
dogs could detect human scent on
a glass slide that had been lightly
handled even when it was left
outdoors for two weeks or indoors
for nearly one month. They can
successfully detect odors at a
concentration of 0.1 part per billion,
and are able to follow tracks over
300 hours old. Once on a trail,
Bloodhounds have been known
to follow it for 130 miles (210 km).
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Hearing, taste, and perspective
As well as differences in their senses of smell and vision, dogs have very
different powers of hearing and taste to humans. Their small height,
relative to us, also gives them a very different outlook on the world.
because they are beyond the
frequency range of our hearing.
It was advantageous for dogs that
were bred to herd livestock to be
able to hear well, so that they could
respond to instructions shouted or
whistled from some distance away.
For this reason, many of the
modern descendants of
these dogs have extremely
sensitive hearing, and it is
not uncommon for herding
dogs to develop noise
phobias when exposed to loud
noises, such as freworks.
Tastes
Humans have nearly 9,000 taste
buds in the mouth, whereas dogs
have less than 2,000, so their sense
Sounds
The sense of hearing is much
better developed in dogs than in
humans, and they can hear noises
at a much greater distance from the
source than we can. Sounds that
we can only just hear can be
detected by dogs from four times
as far away. In addition, they can
hear higher frequencies of sound,
such as the ultrasonic squeaks
made by small prey animals. The
frequency range of a dog’s hearing
is 40–60,000 Hz, whereas we can
only hear sounds in the range of
20–20,000 Hz. This is why dogs
respond to supposedly “silent” dog
whistles, which are only silent to us
5Sound of silence
A “silent” dog whistle sounds like any
other whistle to a dog, but we do not
hear it because our ears cannot detect
noise at such a high frequency.
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of taste is less sophisticated than
ours. Scent is more important than
taste to dogs. The taste buds of these
carnivores are designed to favor
meat and fat, rather than the sweet
and salty foods that humans prefer.
A dog’s perspective
Being smaller than us, dogs see the
world from a different perspective.
To fnd out how life in our homes
appears to them, get down on your
hands and knees and you will see
that it seems a very different place.
This is equally true when we take
them out in busy towns and cities.
To dogs, cars seem huge and lorries
are like roaring monsters, emitting
exhaust gases at nose-height. We
often overlook dogs as we hurry
through crowded streets, but it is
easy to imagine how hard it must be
for them to weave their way through
a forest of moving legs. For puppies
and small dogs, humans must seem
like giants. Hands coming down
from above may seem threatening
to a small dog, especially if he is not
sure of our intentions.
Not paws but jaws
Dogs lack delicate fngers and
opposable thumbs. Because they
need to stand on their paws,
manipulating objects has to be
done with the mouth. This helps
to explain why puppies pick things
up with their mouths during
exploration, and bite and chew to
fnd out about their world. Unlike
human jaws, dog jaws can only
move up and down, and they lack
the ability to move from side to side.
6Threatening hand
Always bear in mind how a dog sees you. From a
dog’s perspective, a huge hand coming down to
give a pat on the head can seem very scary.
6In a land of giants
For puppies and small dogs, humans are as tall
as a double-decker bus. Sometimes this “land of
giants” will seem an intimidating place to them.
5Acquired taste
Being true carnivores, dogs evolved to enjoy
the taste of the raw meat and fat that covered
the bones of their animal prey.
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“For puppies
and small dogs,
humans must
seem like giants.”
Sixth sense
Some of the unusual abilities of
dogs cause people to wonder if
they have a “sixth” sense. For
example, there are many recorded
incidences of dogs finding their
way home over thousands of miles.
Dogs have also been known to
locate their owners even though
they have moved to a place the
dog has never visited. Even more
surprising is the ability of some
dogs to predict when their owners
are coming home: they will go and
wait by the door from the moment
the owner sets off for home. It may
be that dogs have sensory abilities
of which we are not yet aware.
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Because dogs lack the brain structures to learn a verbal language, they
communicate using body postures and signals. Learning what dogs are
saying to each other requires a careful study of how they hold their bodies.
Dog to dog
4”Go away!”
This Weimaraner’s
boisterous play is
too much. To try to
turn off the lively
attention, the
Labrador flattens
itself to the ground,
keeping still and
closing his eyes in
a clear signal of
disengagement.
“Changes in body
position indicate
moods and feelings.”
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6”Don’t stare”
This English Setter
is trying to get
close to investigate
by scent, but the
firm gaze of the
Golden Retriever
causes the Setter to
look politely away
into the distance.
Although they sometimes bark at
each other, most communication
between dogs is non-vocal, and
involves changes in the positions
of their ears, tail, and body. These
changes, though small, indicate
moods and feelings, and they are
used by other dogs as a predictor of
future behavior. To learn this body
language, watch what dogs do when
they meet. Different personalities
behave in different ways, and
you will soon be able to predict
what will happen next.
058
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4Play fight
These dogs know each other well and are
playing. Although they are active, there is
no sign of tension in their faces or stiffness
in their bodies, which would be evident
if it were a real fight, and their eyes are
not fixated on each other.
4”Please play!”
The younger dog is lively and playful,
with energy to spare. The older dog
doesn’t want to get involved. In
desperation, the younger dog puts his
front paws on the back of the older dog
to try to provoke a response.
5Scent investigation
The scent of others is an important
source of information. Collecting scent
from the rear end may be distasteful
to us, but it tells dogs a lot about their
new canine friends.
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Dogs try to communicate with us using body signals, just as they do with
each other. Some signals are easy to recognize, because they have close
human equivalents. Others are not so clear, and may be misinterpreted.
Dog to human
6Avoidance
This dog is held captive and
brought towards the owner’s
face. He feels overwhelmed by
this, so he tries to avoid the
owner by turning his head away.
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5Nose lick
Dogs lick their noses
when they feel under
pressure. This dog leans
away, looks worried,
and licks his nose
when his collar is held.
7Yawning
Yawning can be a way to ease
tension, and it is usually a sign
that the dog is anxious or
worried. This dog yawns when
the owner begins to stare at her.
7Confidence
A relaxed body and upward-curving tail signals confidence.
This young dog is self-assured, and all is well in her world. She
shows it by her confident strut and the way she carries her tail.
Dogs constantly express themselves to us through their
body postures. Understanding these signals will enable
us to react accordingly and help the dog out if necessary.
Remember that dogs are far more vulnerable in the
dog–human relationship than we are, as they have
less control over what happens to them. Owners
should be aware of their dog’s sensitivities, and
make every effort to learn how to read his signals.
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7Pleased to see you
This dog has a good relationship with
his owner and is confident that her
approach means no harm. He wags
his tail with excitement, puts his ears
down in greeting, and looks up at her
with a relaxed expression.
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Nose lick
Dogs lick their noses when they are feeling
anxious or distressed, or under pressure
from their owners. Learning how to read
these signals helps you to understand your
dog better, and be a better owner.
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Dogs fnd it easier to understand our gestures and signals rather than
our spoken words. When training them to respond to cues, it is quicker
if you teach them hand signals frst, and then put a voice cue in later.
Human to dog
6Wave
This owner gives
a clear hand
signal and her
well-trained dog
responds. If a voice
cue is given just
before the signal,
her dog will
eventually learn to
respond to the
voice cue alone.
5Sit
“Sit” is often the
only voice cue that
dogs learn. When
this owner gives
the voice cue, her
well-trained dog
sits—even though
he cannot see any
body cues or
signals she may
be giving.
Dogs watch us rather than listen
to us, as it is not natural for them to
communicate vocally. They observe us
closely for any clue that we might be
ready to do something interesting.
For this reason, using gestures to help
dogs understand what we want is more
likely to succeed than speaking to
them. They will, eventually, learn
words if we repeat them often enough,
but long before that, they will have
learned the body gestures that
accompany particular requests, and it
is to these that they primarily respond.
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“Dogs watch us rather
than listen to us, as
it is not natural for
them to communicate
with words.”
7What’s next?
Positive training results in a dog that pays
attention to your cues, waiting for the next
one to tell him what is going to happen or
what is required of him. Having a dog that
understands our cues makes life much
easier—and a lot more fun.
6Body signals
This owner sends an obvious
“come here” message to her
dog with her body language,
and her trained dog responds
happily. Although it may be
obvious to us what we mean,
at first dogs have no idea and
need to be patiently taught.
6Pointing
With careful teaching, dogs eventually
understand that they need to go in the
direction in which we are pointing. This
dog is not sure, and looks worried.
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A rewarding relationship
A good relationship with your dog, which is based on love, trust, and
respect, is essential to harmony, good behavior, and to maximizing
his potential in the many different aspects of your life together.
5Working partnership
Partners in a successful relationship
help each other out. Mutual trust
and respect will reduce your reliance
on rewards when you ask your
dog to comply with your wishes,
and he will then respond to your
requests willingly.
Essential elements
Dogs are pack animals and, as a
result, they seek out and rely on
their social connections. A special
relationship with at least one
member of their human family is
essential to a dog’s well-being and
good behavior. If that relationship
is strong and solid, the dog will
be well-adjusted, more resilient
to change or adversity, and better
equipped to behave in a way that
is acceptable for everyone.
To build this sort of relationship,
however, you need to work hard
to be loving, trustworthy, and kind.
All dogs have a strong sense of
injustice, so it is very important
to be scrupulously fair in all of
your dealings with them. Positive
training methods will help to keep
your relationship on track as they
rely on making your dog want to do
as you ask rather than forcing him
6Strong bond
A good social relationship is essential
to your dog’s wellbeing and will bring
contentment and happiness to both
of you. However, you have to work
at it and put in time and effort.
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6Establishing trust
The trust that develops during the formation
of a good owner–dog relationship allows you
to perform all maintenance tasks easily.
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Leadership
Humans have bred dogs selectively
to be sociable and biddable.
Because their ancestors once lived
in packs, dogs beneft from having
a leader that they can respect and
follow, and, much like children,
they can become unruly and
diffcult without one. Dogs
need to be taught how to
behave appropriately, and
boundaries of acceptable
behavior need to be set
and maintained.
To be an effective leader,
you need to be kind and
encouraging most of the
time, but, when necessary,
you must also be tough
and uncompromising.
Taking the lead by making
good decisions about what
to do next is an essential
leadership quality that
your dog will recognize, as
is keeping members of
your pack safe and leading
them out of danger when
diffcult situations arise. Of course,
it is possible to force your will on
your dog, but he will not regard you
as a good leader if you do so—you
are more likely to inspire fear.
You have to earn your dog’s respect
through your actions and decisions
in daily life. This is the recipe for
a good relationship.
to comply. Spending time with
him on a regular basis is essential
to making him feel loved, wanted,
and cared for. If you are too busy
to give him the social care that he
craves, he may become withdrawn
and depressed or exhibit unwanted
attention-seeking behaviors.
Bad parenting
Using only positive methods for
training, educating, and building a
relationship with your dog may be
diffcult if you were brought up by
parents who were very negative
towards you, as you may pass this
attitude on. It can be diffcult to
train at times when you are angry
or stressed. Although your dog will
forgive the occasional slip, prevent
damaging your relationship further
by avoiding training sessions when
you are feeling less positive. A
negative approach to training will
only lead to resentment and fear.
4Respect
Earning your dog’s respect is
essential if he is to consider
you a good leader and always
do as you ask without question.
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a leader whom
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and follow.”
Positive training methods
Positive training, which can be achieved by following
the methods that are set out in this book, will
enhance your relationship with your dog, and this,
in turn, will bring the two of you closer together. As
you train, each of you will find out about the other.
You will both learn what you are good at, what makes
you frustrated, what pleases you, and how each of
you can make the other happy. As training continues,
and your relationship becomes stronger, you will find
that your dog will work harder for you and feel more
closely bonded to you. Regular training sessions,
especially if they are interspersed with play, will result
in your dog becoming a well-trained, well-behaved,
willing friend and partner.
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Dogs and children
Dogs and children share a sense of fun and a love of life, and they can
get along really well together if given the careful supervision needed
to ensure good relationships.
all sorts of bad behavior to fourish
and unacceptable habits can
quickly develop. Fortunately,
children learn quickly. It is
relatively easy to teach them how
to behave around their dog in order
5Part of the family
Children who grow up with a family dog are more
likely to keep pet dogs as adults, especially if
their experience of dogs is happy and enjoyable.
6Young trainer
Children can make skilled and enthusiastic dog
trainers given the right information, along with
plenty of coaching and support.
to get the best from him and to
develop a successful relationship.
Children also learn from what
they observe. They will carefully
watch what their parents do with
the family dog and will copy this
behavior. For this reason, be extra
careful what you do with your dog if
the children are watching, because
you will see it refected later.
Children are full of vigor and fun,
and well-socialized dogs respond to
this with excitement and energy.
This makes children very good
trainers—if they are shown the
correct way to do it. They are
usually enthusiastic and excited,
too, which brings about a reciprocal
Set a good example
Dogs make an ideal pet for
children, providing they are
carefully supervised to ensure that
each behaves well with the other.
Leaving them alone together allows
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7Happy greeting
Early socialization is essential if puppies are to
grow up being friendly to and unafraid of children
of all ages. This puppy enjoys the social contact.
excitement from the dog they
are training. Success is important,
because children quickly get
frustrated and impatient if what
they try does not work. It is
essential to supervise these
training sessions, being ready to
step in to help out if needed.
Safe play
When playing, children can be
unintentionally cruel to dogs, and
sometimes they can be intentionally
mean if they have been badly
treated themselves. If a dog is going
to bite, he is statistically more likely
to bite young boys in a family. For
this reason, all play and interactions
between children and the family
dog should be supervised in order
to avoid getting into a situation
where the dog is forced to retaliate.
Children will be readily accepted
from a dog’s point of view if he met
them and had pleasant experiences
6Be there
By supervising play sessions, you can ensure
that both your children and your dog enjoy the
games, and that both parties learn how to treat
each other appropriately.
5New pack member
Dogs usually welcome babies as new members
of the family pack. It is important to prepare your
dog for the new arrival during the pregnancy.
Once the baby has arrived, let your dog know
he is still a valued member of the household.
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“Children can make very good trainers if they
are shown the correct way to go about it.”
with them during early puppyhood
(pp.92–3). Young puppies under
12 weeks of age need to meet
children of all ages if they are to
grow up friendly and unafraid.
Otherwise, dogs can be scared of
children, particularly toddlers, who
appear so different from adults.
Dogs and babies
Babies are usually readily accepted
by dogs as new members of the
family pack. Even so, it is wise to
adjust a dog’s routine and social
environment during the pregnancy
to refect conditions that will occur
after the birth. Playing recordings
of babies crying and letting the dog
get used to the different smells
associated with babies will help.
Teaching your dog to go to his
bed (pp.182–3) is also a good idea
so that you will be able to attend to
the baby without interference.
Toddlers
Problems can occur for the family
dog when babies start to crawl,
move around, and take their first
steps. A dog is at risk of being fallen
on or grabbed for support. He cannot
stop a toddler approaching and needs
to learn to move to specially created
“safe havens”, out of the way. With
their big eyes at dog eye level,
unsteady gait, loud squeaks and cries,
and pinching fingers, toddlers can
seem threatening. Care needs to be
taken until the baby has grown, and
child and dog are used to each other.
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Dogs and other animals
Dogs who are socialized with other animals from an early age tolerate
them well and can be friendly. Care must be taken around small animals,
however, as dogs have strong inherited tendencies.
6Height advantage
Cats feel safer if they have a higher “escape
route”. Providing cats with safe places will
allow them to get to know the dog more quickly.
4Controlled encounter
Take time to get your puppy accustomed to
livestock, such as chickens, in a controlled
way. This takes away the excitement of
future encounters.
Meeting other animals
Adult dogs will try to be friendly
with members of any species
they have met during their critical
socialization period, which is
before they are 12 weeks of age.
As they age, they become less
inclined to be sociable, and any
animals not encountered during
puppyhood will be met with
caution and alarm.
If a puppy is going to live with
or be in contact with other species,
it is vital that he meets them as
early as possible, especially if he
6Natural chaser
Care needs to be taken with small, vulnerable
pets, such as the rabbit shown here. Dogs
should never be trusted completely because
their hunting instincts are strong.
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“Dogs’ instincts are strong and should not
be underestimated, especially when they
are around small, vulnerable pets.”
is required to be relaxed and
happy in their company. During
these meetings, it is important
that the puppy has pleasant
encounters with other animals,
because meeting an aggressive
animal can quickly cause a puppy
to become fearful and aggressive
in turn.
Predatory instincts
As well as early socialization,
dogs need continued supervision
when in the presence of small
animals so that excitement doesn’t
escalate into predatory behavior.
Dogs are descended from wolves,
and so they retain many of the
traits that are useful for hunting
(pp.18–9). Some breeds are more
diffcult than others in this respect.
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Those whose immediate ancestors
were bred to kill vermin (the
terriers), those that were bred
to chase (the herding dogs), and
any others with a strong predatory
instinct are much more likely to
be troublesome to other animals
than those bred as companions.
Care should always be taken
with small pets such as hamsters,
gerbils, rabbits, and birds. It is
surprising how quickly a dog can
turn from a calm pet to an aroused
killer when little creatures scurry
around them or fy off suddenly.
Their instincts are strong and
should not be underestimated,
especially when they are around
small, vulnerable pets.
Chasing games
Some animals are more likely
to be chased than killed, but this
behavior can potentially get
dogs—and their owners—into
trouble. Horses, for example,
are large and, if unfamiliar to
the dog, can represent a serious
challenge that the dog may decide
to scare away. All kinds of livestock
are potential chase targets for an
inexperienced, untrained dog.
The likelihood of traffc accidents,
damage to property, and potential
injury to other animals, as well as
to the dog, is high when dogs chase
out of control. For these reasons,
owners should do all they can to
avoid this behavior.
This can best be done by
accustoming puppies to livestock,
horses, cats, and other smaller
pets from an early age. Sitting
with them under control in a
place where they can experience
these animals will teach puppies
to relax and to behave well with
them in the future.
This process can take longer with
adult dogs, but they, too, will
gradually learn to accept other
animals if you can fnd enough
time to train them to do so.
6Controlled encounter
Keeping your dog under control while in fields
of livestock and horses is important to prevent
the dog from giving chase—or the other animals
from chasing and injuring your dog.
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Dogs and cats
If cats and dogs grow up together,
they can learn to tolerate, and even
enjoy, each other’s company. If he
has never lived with one, however,
the family dog may be aggressive to
a new kitten or cat and try to chase it
out of the house, particularly if he is
a terrier. Time is important. All you
can do is make both animals feel as
comfortable and safe as possible,
giving each time and space to find
their feet, and not forcing encounters
until they are ready to make friends.
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What your
dog needs
Learning what your dog requires for a
fulfilling life is key to being a good owner.
If you can meet these needs, you will help
him to be content and thus easy to live
with. Making sure your dog feels safe in
his world will allow him to relax and prevent
him from showing defensive behavior. Giving
him enough opportunities to play and
exercise, and providing the
correct nutrition, will make him
feel comfortable and increase his
sense of well-being. This section
tells you how to achieve this, as
well as looking at grooming and
handling, and the complex issue
of breeding and neutering.
COAT CARE
Keeping the coat free from
tangles and in good condition
is an important part of providing
for your dog’s needs.
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Safety
Dogs need our help to allow them to feel safe in our world, and also to
avoid all the unwanted behaviors that arise when they feel the need
to defend themselves against actual or perceived threats.
When a dog feels under threat and
afraid, its fear is evident in the way
that the dog holds its body. If the
dog’s owner does not see this or
does not know how to interpret
these signs, the dog will continue
to feel afraid and, when it feels
really threatened, it will have no
choice but to defend itself. Owners
often view any growls and snaps
as unacceptable behavior, and they
may punish their dog in an attempt
to stop it. However, this reaction
7Flight
Dogs usually move away from a threat if it is
possible to do so. This dog holds back his ears
and walks away looking tense.
only serves to create confusion in
the dog, leading to yet more anxiety
and concern.
As in all animals, safety is always
of paramount importance for dogs;
Staying safe
In our world, humans always take
priority and dogs have to go along
with our decisions. Because dogs
cannot speak our language, they
cannot ask us for help or tell us
when they are frightened. Nor can
they complain or write us a note
when they are anxious or worried.
“If a dog is afraid,
he cannot think of
anything other than
getting safe.”
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4Appease
This dog adopts a
submissive posture
when faced with
a stranger. Puppies
and gentle dogs often
use this strategy.
if a dog is afraid, he cannot think
of anything other than making
himself safe. Indeed, he will not
be able to eat, play, or concentrate.
He may snatch at offered treats and
then spit them out.
Courses of action
A dog who is threatened has four
options, which are as follows:
O Freeze—keep perfectly still and
hope that he will be left alone.
O Appease—attempt to show a
bigger animal he means no harm.
O Flight—run away from danger.
O Fight—use aggression to get rid
of the threat.
Help your dog feel safe
To prevent your dog feeling fearful,
you need him to be comfortable and
familiar with everything that he
may encounter in his world. Good
socialization during puppyhood
(pp.92–3) will produce a well-
adjusted dog who views the outside
world as a safe place.
A good relationship with his owner
is an essential element in a dog’s
sense of safety. If he trusts his
owner, he is more likely to trust
and feel safe with other humans.
Positive training and education
from owners will help to reinforce
this. It is also important to protect a
dog from bad experiences,
and owners should make
sure that their dog is
feeling comfortable and
safe at all times.
With a dog who has not
undergone good early
socialization, or who has
had bad experiences and is
already scared, the owner
must learn to read the dog’s
body language (pp.60–1)
and keep him away from anything
that he fnds frightening. The owner
also needs to desensitize the dog to
all the things he fnds threatening
or make him anxious, and use toys
and treats to replace his negative
feelings with positive experiences.
Owners of dogs that are already
aggressive should seek help from
an experienced pet behaviorist
(p.254), who can give an accurate
diagnosis and prepare a treatment
plan to help change your dog’s
behavior. They can also help with
dogs that are not yet aggressive, but
may become so without treatment.
5Protect him
Carefully expose puppies to new
experiences while they are still young
and receptive. This owner helps her
puppy to get used to traffic by being
supportive and cheerful, to encourage
a positive attitude in her dog.
7Fight
Eyes wide, ears back,
and teeth on show,
this dog gives a threat
display in an attempt
to make a stranger
move away.
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Aggression
Dogs only use aggression when
they have no other option. If they
are cornered or on a leash, they
cannot use the flight option, the
freeze option is not working, and
so they have no choice. Dogs will
usually growl in an attempt to make
the threat back off. They may bark
aggressively and snap in the air,
lunging quickly with lots of noise to
try to scare the threat away. If a
threat appears too suddenly, with
no time for warnings, dogs may
bite. Biting is usually a last resort
when all else has failed. Dogs tend
to be very distressed afterwards,
and will be relieved if their owners
help them find a non-aggressive
solution to their problem.
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Exercise requirements
A well-exercised dog is calm and easy to live with. On the other hand,
a dog that is kept restricted and confned readily becomes a boisterous,
agitated nuisance who is really diffcult to own.
4Walking
Walking should be an essential part of your
routine as it will provide exercise, mental
stimulation, and interest for both of you.
6Retrieving
Teaching a young dog to retrieve different
objects is essential if you want to be able to
exercise him quickly and easily when he is older.
Harnessing energy
Dogs have inherited the genes that
give them the desire to run and be
active from their ancestors and wild
relatives, wolves, who need to keep
their bodies in good condition for
hunting. These active traits have
been deliberately enhanced through
selective breeding to produce
breeds with great energy and
stamina for different types of work.
In our modern world, many
owners can only spare a relatively
small amount of time for their dogs.
In addition, most dogs are no longer
worked. This often results in pet
dogs having too much energy for
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their owners to cope with, especially
the descendants of working dogs.
Problem behaviours are common
in under-exercised dogs, as they
try to fnd an alternative outlet for
their considerable mental and
physical energies. Dogs with too
much energy may chew all sorts of
household goods, chase away
imaginary intruders whenever they
hear a sound, steal things, become
obsessed with fnding food, bark,
whine, and run away in search of
entertainment. They jump up, are
boisterous and thoughtless, and
fnd it diffcult to concentrate on
learning or pleasing their owners.
If you have only a limited time to
spend with your dog each day, you
need to make the most of it. Dogs
6Burning energy
Free-running exercise is essential. It not only
makes dogs feel good, but also they are much
nicer to live with when they return home.
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“If you have limited
time to spend with
your dog each day,
you need to make
the most of it.”
6Regular lessons
Learning new exercises and tricks uses up your
dog’s mental energy and gives you useful cues
for how to involve him in your daily life.
need both physical exercise and
mental stimulation. Physical
exercise should be aerobic, in the
form of free running and play, and
stamina-building, as is the case
with walking. Teach your dog to
come back when called (pp.124–5)
and also to retrieve (pp.136–41),
so that he is reliable off the lead
and can be exercised easily.
Short sessions of vigorous play,
interspersed with periods of
walking and off-lead running, will
give you the ideal exercise plan.
How much is enough?
The amount of exercise you give
depends on your dog and his needs.
Two daily walks of about an hour’s
duration each are enough for a
healthy, young working dog, but
older dogs and those from non-
working stock will need less. As well
as physical exercise, dogs require
mental exercise, in the form of
playing and learning. Make time to
teach your dog different games and
actions, so that you can exercise his
mind easily while at home without
exhausting yourself. Finding
hidden objects in boxes or around
the house is a good mental exercise
(pp.172–3). Learning new tricks
(pp.160–85) and exercises will keep
him active and involved in your
everyday life, with the advantage
that he will be tired when you want
to rest or have to go out to work.
Puppies
Puppies need careful exercise as
they have soft joints and bones that
cannot tolerate too much walking.
Active play and free-running for
short periods will help to use up
their energy and make them easier
to raise. Puppies and young dogs
often have a “crazy five minutes”,
when they race around crazily with
their tail tucked underneath them.
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078-079_Nutrition.indd 78 1/12/08 16:14:54
Nutrition
What a dog eats can make a difference to
his state of health and his ability to fght off
disease, as well as to how he feels and behaves.
and favor. In addition, all the food
is pre-cooked before packing, which
may rob it of some of its nutrients.
The advantages are that these foods
are very convenient and, if you buy
from a well-established, reputable
company, you can be sure that the
food contains all your dog needs
for a balanced diet.
Some owners prefer to feed a
more natural diet of raw meat and
bones with liquidized vegetables
and other supplements. The
advantages are that this method
of feeding is more natural and
no preservatives are needed.
The right diet
Just like humans, dogs need
foods that give them energy and
nutrients. A balanced dog food
should contain the following:
O Fats
O Proteins
O Carbohydrates
O Minerals
O Vitamins
O Water
Dogs need the correct ratio of fat to
proteins as well as all 10 essential
amino acids, essential fatty acids,
minerals, and vitamins. While a
home-prepared diet can contain
all of these, many owners prefer the
easier option of buying a complete
food from pet-food manufacturers
that has been specially prepared to
provide balanced nutrition.
The disadvantages of prepared
foods are that they often contain
artifcial preservatives and can
contain chemicals to provide color
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“Always make any changes in your dog’s diet
gradually to avoid upsetting his digestion.”
4Feeding for health
What you feed your dog could affect how long
he lives, how well he is, and how he behaves.
Always provide him with a balanced diet.
Puppy
Senior
BARF diet
Sachet Complete dried dog food
Tinned
Dog-food types
The range and choice of dog food has expanded
greatly during the last few decades. Not only can
you now choose from “complete” dry mixes or
moist tinned ones, but there are also sachets of
“natural” or organic ready-made foods, as well
as specially developed mixes tailored to the
differing nutritional needs of puppies and older
dogs (“seniors”). Many owners prefer to feed
a homemade diet of raw foods known as the
BARF diet (the letters stand for Bones And Raw
Food, or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food),
which is claimed to be healthier because it is
uncooked. However, homemade diets do
need to be carefully balanced.
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The disadvantages are that it is
time-consuming and it is diffcult
to ensure that a balanced diet is
being provided.
Diet and behavior
There is limited scientifc evidence
for the effects of diet on behavior.
Food that seems to suit one dog
may appear to cause another to be
diffcult and badly behaved. As
well as behavior therapy, it is
sometimes worth changing the diet
to see if this improves
matters. If your dog is
showing unwanted
behavior half an hour after
eating, every time he eats, he
may be allergic to the food. Consult
your veterinarian about what to
feed. Always make changes in diet
gradually to avoid upsetting your
dog’s digestion.
Energy requirements
Different dogs have different
energy requirements. For example,
a nursing mother needs more
energy to feed her puppies, a
working dog needs more energy to
keep going all day, a dog in cold
conditions needs more energy to
keep warm, and a neutered dog
needs less energy than one that is
entire. For this reason, always be
prepared to vary the amount fed to
keep your dog at his ideal weight
(see diagram below). If you are
doing a lot of training, remove some
of his daily ration each day to allow
for extra treats that will be given
during the training sessions.
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4An ideal weight
Just like humans, a dog’s optimal weight
should be neither too thin nor too fat.
Extremes either way compromise health.
4Over-eating
Feeding your dog too much will compromise his
health and make it more difficult for him to play
and exercise. Adjust his food intake accordingly.
Thin dog Just right Obese dog
Bones and chewing
Puppies chew when teething. If given
the opportunity, adult dogs will continue
to chew throughout their lives to keep
their jaws and teeth in good condition.
There is much controversy over what
dogs should chew. Some vets advise
against bones because they can cause
intestinal trouble. If you allow bones,
never feed cooked ones (these can
splinter), and remove the bone from
your dog before he ingests too much.
Pet shops sell a variety of smoked
and hardened bones, together with
rawhide chews and a range of other
types (pp.94–5).
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076-077_Play_1.indd 76 16/11/08 16:59:33
Why dogs play
For wild dog puppies, play is a rehearsal for the hunting behaviors they
need later in life in order to survive. Domestic dogs play throughout their
lives, and they incorporate many aspects of the hunting sequence.
them to practice all the moves they
need for hunting, so they can
become profcient while still being
fed by others. Although our
domestic dogs have no need to catch
their own food, the instincts that
allow them to do so are often still
present, and puppies need to fnd
an outlet for these natural
behaviors. Consequently, they
practice following moving objects,
stalking, chasing, and pouncing,
becoming more effcient as they
grow and hone their skills.
Types of games
Dogs play three types of games
with us: chase games, tug-of-war
games, and squeaky toy games.
Chase This is the most widely
played game. If you teach your
dog how to bring back a toy to you
(pp.138–9), it is a great way to
exercise him without expending too
Natural behavior
Both wolf and domestic dog puppies
begin to play various hunting and
wrestling games as soon as they are
suffciently coordinated. This play
strengthens their bodies and allows
5Thrill of the chase
Herding dogs love the thrill of the chase and
can become completely obsessed with chasing
toys. Play frequently to use up energy, but keep
sessions short to avoid exhausting your dog.
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“Play strengthens their bodies and allows
them to practice all the moves they will
need for hunting.”
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7Disinterested
Dogs of some breeds, especially hounds, are not
very interested in playing with toys. Moving the
toy, like small prey, can stimulate their interest.
6Killer instinct
Squeaky toys are exciting to predatory dogs who
enjoy “killing” the squeak. However, once it no
longer squeaks, the toy is usually discarded.
5Exercise props
Dogs who enjoy playing with toys are much
easier to exercise, especially if they learn how
to bring the toy back to you after the chase.
5Tugging game
Tug games are great fun for dogs, especially
terriers and competitive dogs, but they do need
strict rules to prevent them getting out of hand.
much energy yourself. Some breeds
enjoy chase games more than
others, especially herding dogs,
which were bred to enjoy the chase,
and gun dogs, which were
developed to pick things up and
thus are natural retrievers.
If your dog is a very enthusiastic
player, who will run again and
again, take care not to overheat him
on hot days with too much running.
Always play in short, active bursts,
and then give him suffcient time
to cool down in between sessions.
Tug of war Terriers and other
strong-willed dogs enjoy tug-of-war
games. For some dogs, this is their
favorite game and they will try to
play it even if it means pulling on
their owner’s sleeve or their leash.
Since tugging is a vigorous game,
which is played in close proximity
to your dog, you must establish
some practical rules for play:
º Only allov play vIlh loys-nol
with your sleeves or trouser legs.
º Your dog should slop luggIng
as soon as you ask him to.
º Ie sure lo vIn lug-oI-var games
more often than you lose them.
º Jhe game musl end ImmedIalely
if any connection is made between
the dog’s teeth and human skin.
º Alvays remove lhe loy al lhe end
of the game and put it away.
Squeaky toy games Dogs with a
strong predatory instinct, especially
terriers, enjoy playing with squeaky
toys, as the squeak represents the
cry of an injured animal. Repellent
though this may appear to us, it is
just a game to our dogs. Some dogs
can keep a squeaky toy intact for a
long time, whereas others work fast
to destroy the squeak inside the toy
and then instantly lose interest.
Non-players
Not all dogs are natural toy players;
instead, they prefer to chase live
animals if the opportunity arises.
Most hounds fall into this category.
Trying to get them to play with toys
after puppyhood is diffcult, but it
can be achieved if you can make the
loy move lIke small prey. Ie palIenl
and keep games fun and active.
Toys on a walk
If your dog likes to chase, always
remember to take some toys with
you when you go for a walk, so
that you can play together. If he
is focused on playing with you,
he is less likely to run off looking
for other things to chase and to
get into trouble chasing other dogs,
joggers, cyclists, livestock, and
cars. Taking toys on a walk will
also help prevent the temptation
to throw sticks for your dog. Vets
treat many cases in which the end
of a stick has stuck in the ground
and an enthusiastic dog has injured
his mouth on the other end.
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Fit for life
Providing good nutrition, plenty of
exercise, and everything else your dog
requires will make him contented and
pleasant to live with. He will also be easier
to train and will learn more quickly.
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Well behaved play
Teaching an adult dog to play is easy, but you will need patience and
perseverance. When dogs begin to play with toys, teaching them good play
manners will prevent any accidents caused by over-excitement.
before moving it away and
repeating the exercise. Continue in
this way, keeping the lessons short,
until your dog’s tail starts to wag in
anticipation of a game whenever he
sees the toy. If you have diffculty in
getting him interested in the toy,
tempt him with tasty food treats
tucked inside it. Let him sniff the
toy before throwing it just out of his
reach. As he goes to investigate,
encourage him to pick up the toy
and, if necessary, help him get the
food out and praise him well.
Good manners
When your dog plays well and
enthusiastically, you can begin to
teach him good manners. Control
measures will always help to reduce
his enthusiasm, so be sure to wait
until he is playing really well before
you embark on this stage.
The three rules
To instill good manners, you must
teach your dog to do the following:
O Sit and wait patiently when you
have a toy until you let him know
that you are ready to start play.
Teach your dog to play
Most dogs want to play, but some
may not have played with their
owners as puppies and do not know
how to play with toys. Others, who
may have been scolded for picking
up objects in the past, may be
reluctant to take hold of toys.
Choose a time to play with your
dog when he is already excited.
Begin with a small fuffy toy.
Holding one end, move it along the
foor erratically. Keep it moving,
sometimes hiding it behind
furniture and at other times
revealing it quickly before hiding
it again. As your dog becomes
interested and comes to investigate,
move the toy towards him quickly
and then pull it away again to tempt
him. As he closes in on it for the
second or third time, let him take it
and play with it for a few seconds
5Puppy play
Young puppies are easily enticed to play. They
prefer soft toys, especially when teething.
6Edible incentive
Encourage a reluctant dog to get interested in a
toy by hiding food inside. Chasing the toy to get
the food teaches him that toys are fun.
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“When your dog plays
enthusiastically, you
can begin teaching
him good manners.”
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O Keep his teeth well away from
your hands during the game.
O Stop playing as soon as you tell
your dog to do so.
Teaching these three rules will
ensure that all games are played
in a controlled way and with no risk
of damage to you. To teach your dog
to keep his teeth off you during
play, simply stop and walk away
from him if his teeth touch you, so
that he learns to be more careful
next time. To teach him to stop
playing on command, ask him to
stop and then bring the game to a
swift close, removing the toy from
his mouth by offering a tasty treat
instead. Praise him for letting go
of the toy and then decide if you
want to play again. If he will not
relinquish the toy, keep everything
as still as possible to avoid any
excitement, and wait until he
makes his own decision to stop
holding on to the toy. Reward him
enthusiastically when he does.
6Retain control
You need to teach your dog to stop and let go
of a toy as soon as you ask him. This prevents
over-excitement and teaches self-control.
6Play request
Enthusiasm for games takes a while to develop,
but once an adult dog has learnt how to play,
he will usually want to do so frequently.
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Benefits of playing games
Playing games with your dog brings
many benefits, helping build close
bonds, preventing him finding other
outlets for his energy, and keeping
him fit. Play his favorite game by
choosing whichever toy interests
him most, and use different toys to
introduce variety. Ensure that both
of you are having fun, and keep the
games as light-hearted as possible.
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080-081_Grooming_and_handling.indd 80 10/11/08 18:23:50
Grooming and handling
Grooming and handling sessions with your dog allow you to carry
out essential body maintenance procedures. They also provide an
opportunity to give your social dog the love and affection he needs.
procedures if you allow suffcient
time for them to learn to trust you.
Always keep handling sessions
short and friendly, and be patient,
adopting a gentle approach. Move
slowly until your dog accepts what
you are doing, and make sure he
is fully relaxed before you move on
to the next stage.
Restraint
Dogs not only need to learn that in
handling them we mean them no
harm, but also that they cannot get
free until we let them go. This is
important, as a dog who cannot be
The need to touch
Dogs rarely touch each other unless
they are playing, fghting, or
mating. Humans need to touch their
dogs, not only to restrain them and
carry out essential activities, but
also to show their affection. Dogs
must learn to trust that we will
not hurt them in this process.
Handling should begin when your
dog is a puppy, although adult dogs
can still be taught to accept these
6Avoid a struggle
Teaching your dog to accept and even enjoy
gentle restraint will make him a better patient if
he ever becomes sick or is injured in an accident.
7Massage session
Everyday handling, grooming, and massaging
sessions with your dog will help to build trust
and enhance the special bond between you.
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effectively handled will be diffcult
to treat if he is sick or injured.
Gradually get your dog used to
being held and restrained—don’t
press your fngers into him, but
gently and frmly hold on if he tries
to move away. Release him when
he is still and relaxed.
Grooming
Some breeds need more grooming
than others, but all will beneft from
daily examination and handling.
A natural coat is made up of an
insulating under-layer of short,
fuffy hair, with coarser protective
hairs on top to keep out wind and
rain. Selective breeding has
resulted in a variety of coat types,
which require different grooming
routines. Some molt naturally, some
need clipping, and others need to
have the old hairs stripped out by
hand. Whatever your dog needs,
ensure he enjoys these sessions and
be considerate when you use
brushes and combs.
Nail clipping
It is a good idea to get this done
by an experienced person at a
veterinary offce or grooming parlor
to avoid cutting the quick, which
ends close to the end of the nail and
carries blood vessels and nerves.
Get your dog used to the feel of the
clippers against his nails, and
having his paws held.
Bathing
A dog’s oily coat, there to protect
him against the elements, often gets
dirty and smelly. If your dog is kept
inside and is well sheltered from
harsh weather conditions, there is
no reason not to wash him as often
as you like. However, make sure
that he enjoys it, and dry him
thoroughly afterwards.
The power of touch
Once your dog has got used to being
handled, he will enjoy grooming
and massage. Use these sessions as
an opportunity for a quick health
check to fnd any parasites, lumps,
cuts, or abnormalities that may
need veterinary attention.
6Keeping trim
Dogs with long, silky hair need daily grooming
to keep them free of knots, as well as regular
trips to the grooming parlor.
6Watch the quick
Take care to avoid cutting the quick that runs
through the center of the nail. Ask a veterinarian,
nurse, or a professional dog groomer to show
you what to do or ask them to do it for you.
Coat types
Coat types vary
according to
a dog’s breed,
and each will
need a different
care routine to
keep the coat in
good condition.
Long and curly
coats require
the most care.
Wiry Curly Long
Smooth Spotted Rough
Slicker
brush
Fine-
toothed
comb
Bristle
brush
Grooming tools
There are a wide variety of
grooming tools available to
suit all coat types. Choose
those that are appropriate
for keeping your dog’s fur
free of mats and knots.
If your dog has a long or
curly coat, seek advice
from a professional
dog groomer.
Brushes and combs
These perform different
functions, and the ones you
choose depends on your
dog’s coat length and type.
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Breeding and neutering
The decision of which dogs will mate and produce puppies is largely
controlled by humans. Owners need to decide whether to have their dog
neutered or cope with living with an entire (un-neutered) animal.
a considerable time investigating
scent marks to verify the
reproductive status of females and
also to check out the competition
from other entire males.
If entire male dogs scent a female
who is ready to mate, they will mark
their territory more, become more
competitive with other males, and
work hard to track the female down.
The desire to reproduce is strong,
and entire males with mating in
mind are unlikely to listen to their
owners’ commands. Some dogs may
even be diffcult to confne at home,
howling, going off their food, and
mounting people’s legs, cushions,
and other “suitable” objects.
Responsible ownership
Life with an entire dog, male or
female, is more complicated than
living with a neutered pet—the
behaviors that facilitate mating can
cause problems if they are not
properly managed. If accidental
mating does occur, you will have to
fnd good homes for the resulting
puppies. Careful thought should
be given to producing a litter and,
if this is not desired, you should
consider the benefts of neutering.
Entire male dogs
Entire males are always intensely
interested in other dogs within their
territory, and therefore they spend
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6Scent marking
The hormone testosterone triggers changes in
a male dog’s brain at puberty, causing him to lift
his leg when he urinates and allowing him to
scent mark objects more accurately.
7Roaming
If an entire male dog picks up the scent of
a female in season, he may escape from home,
or run off on walks, to try to track her down.
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4New lives
Finding good homes for a litter of puppies
is not an easy task. They will also need
veterinary care, good food, regular cleaning,
and plenty of socialization as they develop.
Entire female dogs
Entire females come into estrus
about once every six months for two
weeks. During this time they are
sexually receptive to the advances
of entire males. They have mood
changes, may fght with other
females, and may even try to escape
to fnd a mate. If they are not mated,
they can experience phantom
pregnancies about two months
later, when they make nests,
produce milk, and look after
phantom or substitute babies.
Neutering
Neutering involves the surgical
removal of the dog’s reproductive
organs by a vet under anaesthesia.
It takes away the desire to mate and
all the associated behaviors. It is
usually carried out at puberty for
males and after the frst season for
females, although it can be done
earlier or later. For entire females
that are not required for breeding,
it reduces the risk of possible
life-threatening womb infections
and mammary tumors. However,
there is an increased risk of urinary
incontinence in neutered bitches.
Disadvantages for both sexes
involve coat changes and increased
appetite, which can lead to weight
gain unless food is restricted.
Neutering only removes desires
that are prompted by circulating
sex hormones, and it is not a
cure-all for behavior problems.
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“Life with an entire dog is more
complicated than living with a
neutered pet.”
7Female rivalry
Entire females living in the same household
can develop intense rivalry during estrus,
leading to bullying or fights.
4Removing urges
A neutered dog is
more content to stay
at home with its
owner, not needing
to escape and run
off to track down
a suitable mate.
Inherited diseases
Selective breeding to produce the
perfect show dog has resulted in
a reduction of the number of mates
available, and parents are often too
closely related. This increases the
risk of inherited disease, so before
buying a puppy, check his parents
have been tested for such
conditions and found to be free of
disease. Testing for inherited
diseases, and discarding diseased
stock from breeding dogs, is
essential for producing healthy
puppies and eradicating future
health problems.
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Age-related
issues
Each stage of canine life brings with it
different challenges and responsibilities.
Puppyhood is the most time-consuming
and important stage—the habits formed
and behavior patterns learned in the first
year will last a lifetime. Adolescence is a
testing time for owners, and issues needs to
be worked through carefully. Elderly dogs
need special care to help them
live contentedly and cope with
the difficulties that old age
brings. This section will prepare
you for the challenges ahead,
giving you the information you
need to help your dog progress
through life with ease.
LIFE’S LESSONS
Puppyhood is a time for finding
out about the world, for building
good habits, and for learning
about how to live with humans.
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Puppyhood: the frst year
The frst year of a dog’s life sets its character and forms its behavioral
habits. The traits it develops may be good or bad depending on the effort
made by the breeder and the puppy’s new owner.
4Reward good behavior
Teaching your puppy what he should do is both
easier and kinder than telling him off for doing
things that you don’t want him to do.
6Gentle exposure
Gradually introducing your puppy to everyday
objects will help him feel safe and comfortable,
and his world will seem a less frightening place.
cars, steps, slippery surfaces, and
loud noises. For these reasons, it is
essential that your puppy is born
and raised in a household rather
than outside in a kennel. Breeders
and owners alike must ensure that
puppies meet—and have pleasant
encounters with—as many new
people as possible during their
early lives, and that they experience
a wide range of stimulating
environments. This process should
continue until they reach maturity.
Good habits
As well as socialization, puppies
need to be well educated
throughout the frst 12 months,
to ensure they grow up into
well-behaved and well-adjusted
adult dogs. Good habits established
during this critical period will last
a lifetime, as will bad ones.
Puppies always require constant
supervision to ensure they make
the right choices. For owners, just
being there to educate and train
them is as important as doing the
right thing. Reward-based training,
following the examples shown in
this book, will enable you to train
reliable responses, as well as
develop a good relationship with
your dog, based on love and trust.
Socialization
One of the main infuences on a
puppy’s adult character is the
amount of socialization he receives
during the frst 12 weeks of his life.
During these crucial weeks,
puppies will readily make friends
with humans and other animals—
good experiences around both
are vital during this period.
Lack of exposure to people and
pets at a young age may cause a
puppy to be fearful and shy in
unfamiliar situations, for example
with children and other animals.
This fearfulness can develop into
aggressive behavior as the puppy
grows into an adult.
In addition, a young puppy
needs to get accustomed to its
environment and become familiar
with the wide range of everyday
occurrences inside and outside the
home, including vacuum cleaners,
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6Character building
Happy encounters with all types of people and
animals are essential for developing a friendly,
well-adjusted character in a young puppy.
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6Ignore bad behavior
Always make a point of ignoring any form of
unwanted behavior. Never reward it. Once
your puppy learns that he will not be rewarded
for this behavior, he will stop doing it.
4Distraction technique
If the behavior is self-rewarding, such as
stealing food from the table, prevent it by using
a lead and a toy and distracting your puppy into
doing something more acceptable instead.
Setting boundaries
It is equally important to set
boundaries so that your puppy
learns what is and is not acceptable.
Puppies are eager to please until
they reach adolescence, so utilize
this time to teach them what they
can and should not do. Making your
puppy aware that he cannot have
everything his own way will help
him learn to deal with the
frustration he will face later in life
when he wants something he
cannot have. Teaching him that you
will not give way once you have
decided on a course of action will
let him know that you are mentally
stronger than him, and will prevent
him from making challenges later
on. If you win lots of small contests
now, he is less likely to challenge
you over more important issues
when he is bigger and stronger.
“A puppy should be
born and raised in
a household rather
than in a kennel.”
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Solutions to puppy problems
Puppies do not arrive in our homes already trained. Not only do we need
to teach them carefully how to behave, but we also have to tackle any
behavior problems early on to prevent them becoming bad habits.
with other members of their species
by biting and wrestling, but when
they do it to us, their very sharp
puppy teeth hurt and therefore
this form of play is unacceptable.
For this reason, we need to teach
them to play with toys instead.
During the early days with your
puppy, always have a large soft toy
to hand when you interact. Move it
and wriggle it, keeping the rest of
your body still, so that the toy
becomes something exciting for the
puppy to chase and grab. Play
gently, letting him take the toy
sometimes, and if you have children
encourage them to do the same.
Once your puppy learns how to play
with toys and can do so successfully,
he will stop play biting.
Chewing
Chewing is another normal
behavior for teething puppies.
Providing plenty of items that can
be chewed is the secret to getting
through this phase without too
many ruined shoes and other
household items. Supervise your
Play biting
This is one of the most common
puppy problems. Playful puppies
bite our hands and sometimes our
arms, faces, and feet in an attempt
to get us to play with them. This is
quite normal for them as they play
5Play biting
Puppies try to get us to play by biting our hands in
the same way they play with their siblings. If this
happens, remove your hand and end the game.
6Toy play
Teaching your puppy to play with toys instead of
your hands will prevent him practicing play biting
as well as providing an outlet for his strong
desire to play games with you.
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4Expert guidance
An experienced, qualified trainer will be able to
advise you and help solve any behavior problems
you may encounter with your puppy.
puppy when he is in places where
these things may be lying around,
and make sure there are plenty of
suitable appetizing chews available.
However, puppies soon get bored
and may be tempted by items they
should not chew. Deal with this by
offering a variety of chews every
few days, taking away the old ones
and bringing out different ones, so
that there is always something new
to investigate and chew. Beware of
another chewing phase at around
seven to ten months as your puppy
becomes a growing adolescent.
House training
Toilet training is easy if you are
vigilant as puppies are born in a
nest and come ready programed to
be clean. Help them to learn that
the whole house is their nest by
always taking them outside at the
following times:
º Soon aIler each Ieed.
º AIler playIng, exercIse, and
any excIlemenl.
º On vakIng Irom a sleep.
º IIrsl lhIng In lhe mornIng and
last thing at night.
º Al leasl once every hour.
Slay oulsIde vIlh your puppy, or
he will be too lonely to concentrate,
and let him run about and sniff.
If you supervise your puppy
constantly during the frst two
weeks, and take him outside
whenever he looks like he may need
to go to the toilet, he will have fewer
accidents and house training will
progress very quickly.
Puppy classes
Taking your puppy to a training
class not only improves your skills
and techniques, but also socializes
him with other puppies and people.
Ensure the trainer uses positive
methods and avoid classes where
puppies or people are treated badly.
Go to classes specifcally for
puppIes under 20 veeks. A small
6Finding a good spot
Stay out with your puppy when he needs to go to
the toilet. Your reassuring presence will help him
relax and go more quickly than if he is left alone.
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“Once your puppy
learns how to play
with toys and can do
so successfully, he
will stop play biting.”
Types of chew
There are many different chews on
the market, ranging from traditional
rawhide types to sterilized, stuffed,
and smoked bones. Squeeze some
edible treats into a strong toy with
holes in it, or into a sterilized bone.
Extracting the treats will keep your
puppy busy and prevent him from
chewing other household items.
It also helps to channel and use up
his strong drive to chew.
Variety
Provide a variety of chews to stimulate
your puppy’s interest and prevent him
chewing things that are unsuitable.
class size ensures you get more
individual attention, and a trainer
with a good knowledge of canine
behavior will be able to help you
overcome any problems.
Smoked
bone
Stuffed toy
Stuffed
bone
Rawhide
chew
Sterilized
bone
Rawhide chew
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Surviving adolescence
Adolescence can be a diffcult time, and all
puppy owners need to prepare themselves for
this phase. However, try not to worry—with the
right attitude and perseverance, this period will
soon be over and a lovely adult dog will emerge.
becomes their top priority, whereas
previously their focus had been on
pleasing us. Now that your puppy is
bigger, stronger, and becoming more
independent, you are less important
to him than exploration, and he will
probably begin to actively ignore
you in favor of things outside.
Diffcult time
This can be an awkward time for
owners unless they are prepared
for it. All their hard work seems to
have been for nothing as their dog
becomes rebellious, disinterested,
5Irresistible
With their big eyes, short faces, and desire to
please their owners, young puppies make us
want to care for them and meet their needs.
and disobedient. Fortunately,
adolescence is a passing phase that
comes to a natural end. Dogs
usually begin to mature at about
one year, although some of the
larger breeds do not reach full
social maturity until they are
around three years old. If you can
ride out the diffculties that
adolescence presents, your dog will
eventually return to being the
loving, attentive pet you once knew.
Not coming back
During adolescence, one of the most
common problems for owners is
their dogs not coming back when
called on walks. The adolescent dog
has other things to do, such as
exploring, sniffng to fnd out who
Exploring the world
Young puppies need us to care for
them, and they work hard to keep
our attention by being sweet and
engaging. It is easy for us to enjoy
this phase, but it does make it
more diffcult to accept the marked
change in their attitude that occurs
when they reach puberty at about
six months. At this time, their focus
naturally shifts to the outside world
as all the hormones associated with
reproduction begin to circulate.
Suddenly, fnding out about their
environment and everything in it
6Losing interest
Unlike puppies, adolescent dogs are focused on
the outside world and all it contains and are only
occasionally interested in their owners.
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7Keeping control
During adolescence, it is advisable to use a long
line when out on walks, to prevent your dog
ignoring your recall cues or getting into trouble.
and what has been in his territory,
marking it with his own scent, and
interacting with other dogs. During
this time, he has the vigor and
energy of an adult, but lacks the
knowledge and experience that
an older dog needs to stay out of
trouble. Even if you had a good
recall before, keep your dog on a
long line in places where he may be
tempted to go off without you, to
prevent him getting into diffculties.
6The teenage phase
Just as with humans, adolescence is a normal,
natural process with accompanying behavior
changes that last until maturity is reached.
097
Trouble with other dogs
Adolescent dogs may also get into
trouble as they get to know other
dogs in the area and establish a
ranking. If your dog begins to have
aggressive encounters, keep away
from unknown dogs and only allow
interaction with friendly ones.
Don’t give up
Many owners complain that during
adolescence their dogs begin to be
disobedient, no longer responding
to commands. This is when some
give up on their dogs and put them
into rescue, which is unnecessary.
Adolescence is just a phase and
when the dogs mature, they will be
willing to please again. Don’t make
too many requests that are unlikely
to be met, but do gently insist that
your dog does as you ask.
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Elderly dogs
Just like humans, dogs gradually begin to slow down and their bodies
start to fail as they get older. Understanding and adapting to their
changing needs will help them to remain content and happy into old age.
In addition, failing senses provide
less information about their world.
The eyes and ears are usually the
frst to fade, with the sense of smell
outlasting all others. Cataracts may
cloud the lenses of the eyes, making
it more diffcult to see, and some
hearing ranges are lost, so
sounds appear distorted or
muffed. Since they can no
longer be sure about their
surroundings, elderly dogs
may be likely to do things
that are out of character.
They may snap if touched
unexpectedly because they cannot
hear you approaching. Waking
them gently by standing beside
them long enough for them to smell
you before you touch them can help
prevent bitten fngers. Along with
failing senses, painful joints cause
stiffness and lack of mobility.
This brings a reluctance to move,
and can result in defensive biting if
dogs think that they are about to be
moved in a painful way, especially
by children, who do not understand
their condition.
The effects of aging
There are big differences in how
long dogs live. Giant dogs, such as
the Great Dane, are lucky if they
make it to nine years old, whereas
Jack Russell Terriers sometimes
live until they are 20. However,
as a general rule, most dogs over
10 years old fall into the “elderly”
category. After this age, their bodies
are less suited to vigorous activity
and will slowly decline as they
get older. Along with the bodily
changes that age brings, the mind
also starts to run more slowly and
tiredness takes over, with more
and more time spent sleeping.
6Failing senses
An elderly dog may jump and even bite
defensively when he is touched unexpectedly,
because he did not notice someone approaching.
5Do not disturb
Elderly dogs need more rest, and you should
provide a comfortable, warm, and safe place
to sleep where they will not be disturbed.
5Happy old age
Elderly dogs can live a contented
life with owners who help them
through the changes old age brings.
4Old joints
Stiff, painful joints may make old dogs reluctant
to move. Veterinary advice, medication, and
gentle exercise can help get them moving again.
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Slowing down
To keep your dog living happily into old
age, he must stay active and engaged
with life. He will need more sleep than
when he was younger, but noticing when
he is awake and playing and encouraging
him to take exercise and be part of the
family are important. Don’t forget him
for long periods because he sleeps
more. Adjust to his speed, so he feels
comfortable, not rushed, and valued.
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Problems with elderly dogs
Life with an elderly dog can be made easier if you deal successfully with
some of the common problems that old age brings. With a little help and
understanding, many diffculties can be overcome.
his feet. Finding a way to get him
into the car without hurting him is
important, whether this is by lifting
him up or using a ramp. Once inside,
providing a padded bed and taking
corners and road bumps carefully
can prevent him from losing his
balance and having a painful fall.
4Car ramp
Large, heavy dogs who
can no longer jump
and cannot be lifted
may need a specially
designed ramp to get
into the car. This will
enable them to walk
slowly into the car
with the minimum
of discomfort.
6How to lift
If you are lifting an older dog,
whether to get him into the car or
for any other reason, take care not
to squeeze him in such a way that
you compress painful joints or limbs.
Phobias and fears
Failing senses and reduced
confdence late in life can lead to an
elderly dog developing phobias and
fears. Noises that he once tolerated,
such as thunder, freworks, and even
rain on a roof, may suddenly become
frightening to the elderly dog. Lots
of understanding and patience are
needed to avoid situations in which
he feels threatened.
In addition to specifc fears, old
dogs may develop generalized fears,
such as not being able to tolerate
being left alone in the dark. If this
is the case, reorganize his sleeping
arrangements, so that he can sleep
near to the family and feel safe. This
usually solves the problem, but if it
persists, your vet may be able to help
with drugs and behavior therapy.
Regular check-ups
Many of the behavioral changes
and problems that occur in old age
are caused by physical conditions,
such as pain-induced behavioral
changes produced by arthritis. It is
vital to arrange regular check-ups
for your dog with the vet. Changes
due to aging are often slow to
Car travel
Problems due to aging bodies and
minds are common in older dogs,
but there is much you can do to
make them to feel safe and content
in their fnal years. For example,
car journeys can become daunting
for a dog who is already shaky on
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“Failing senses and
reduced confidence
late in life can result
in an elderly dog
developing phobias
and fears.”
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6Confused thinking
Old dogs can become confused. You may find that
they get lost or try to get out of the door on the
wrong side. Ask your vet if medication can help.
6Minimize change
If your dog has failing sight, try to keep the
furniture in the same place to help him find his
way safely around your home. If changes are
essential, make them one at a time.
7Tender loving care
Providing your old dog with extra care and
understanding can lead to a quality of life that
will bring him contentment for many years.
appear, but regular examination
by a vet will help identify signs or
symptoms of treatable conditions.
Cognitive dysfunction
syndrome
Similar to Alzheimer’s Disease in
humans, cognitive dysfunction
syndrome can affect older dogs.
Symptoms of the condition include:
º ConIusIon or dIsorIenlalIon, such
as getting lost or trapped in corners.
º WakIng al nIghl or a change In
sleeping patterns.
º Iouse-lraInIng dIIncullIes.
º Ðecreased allenlIon span or
staring into space.
º IacIng or lack oI usual aclIvIly.
º Iol recognIzIng IamIly, and a
decline in your shared relationship.
Some symptoms may be part of the
natural aging process; others may
be due to changes in the dog’s brain
that can be improved by medication.
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Routine is important
As dogs age and become fragile,
routine becomes very important.
Regular feeding, exercise, and
toileting opportunities, together
with a constant diet, will help to
prevent loss of house-training and
keep their bodies working well. Old
dogs sleep a lot, and it is easy to
forget they are there. A routine will
help you remember to allow enough
time to give your dog the love, play,
and stimulation he needs.
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Basic
training
How dogs learn
Good grounding
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How dogs learn
To be a successful trainer, you
must understand how the learning
process works in dogs. With this
knowledge, all practical training tasks will
be easier for both you and your dog. This
section tells you all you need to know
to train successfully, and explains how to
get your dog to do what you want, so you
can reward the action. It also offers advice
on which rewards to use, when to begin to
phase them out, and what to
replace them with. Find out why
timing is critical to successful
training, and how dogs learn
sets of associations, as well as
how bad habits can be unlearned
almost as easily as they were
learned in the first place.
POSITIVE TRAINING
Dogs learn very quickly if it is
in their best interest to do so.
Reward-based training is fun
for both dog and owner.
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Trial, error, and success
Understanding how dogs learn is essential if we are to teach them how to
respond to our requests easily and with minimal confusion. It will also
cut down the time it takes to train them.
5Learning
The smell of
food inside
a flip-top
garbage can
encourages
this dog to use
his initiative to
find a way to
get at it. Once
he learns how,
he will be able
to repeat this
task with ease.
cease to do it. However, a dog who
jumps up to greet his owner and is
rewarded with fuss and attention
will repeat this action, and it will
soon become a bad habit that is
very diffcult to break (pp.188–9).
Learning to respond
We can use our dogs’ ability to learn
from their actions by rewarding the
behaviors we want to be repeated,
The learning process
Dogs learn by trial, error, and
success, just like humans. They will
repeat any action that leads to a
successful outcome, and will avoid
those actions that go unrewarded or
have unpleasant consequences. For
example, a dog who burns his nose
on a hot stove will not wish to do so
again. Likewise, a puppy who barks
for attention and is ignored will
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6Get the action
To teach a puppy to respond to a request, you
need to find a way to get him to do the action
you require.
5Trial and error
Since he lacks a
sophisticated brain
to figure out this
problem, the dog
needs to keep
trying different
actions until one of
them is successful.
and ignoring or preventing those
we dislike. We can also utilize this
technique when we want to train
our dogs to respond to our requests,
such as to come when called
(pp.124–5) or to lie down (pp.126–7).
To train a dog to do something for
us, all we need to do is get him to
perform the action and then reward
it, so that he does it again next time.
Since dogs do not understand what
we are saying (although sometimes
people think they do, as they are so
good as reading our non-verbal
language), we cannot tell them with
words what we want them to do.
Instead, we need to cleverly arrange
6Success!
This dog may have
succeeded, but he
needs to repeat this
action several times
before he learns
what he must do
to get the stick
through the gate.
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6Respond on cue
Once the puppy has learned what you want him
to do, this action can be put on cue, so you can
ask him to do it again.
for them to do the action we require
(p.110) and then reward them. Once
this is going well and they know
how to get the rewards in that
situation, we can put the action on
cue by giving a voice cue or hand
signal just before we arrange for
them to carry out the action.
A training example
If you want your dog to lie down
when you ask, frst lure him into
position using a carefully held
edible treat (p.110). As soon as his
elbows reach the foor, feed him the
treat. Repeat this exercise until he
knows what to do in order to get the
treat. Then put the action on cue by
giving a hand signal or the voice
cue “down” (pp.110–11) just before
you lure him into position. After
many repetitions of this action, he
will learn that when you give a
certain signal he will be rewarded
if he lies down, and he will begin to
do so whenever asked. Train him to
do this in a variety of situations
(pp.114–5). When he has learned
how to respond to the cue, you will
be able to reduce the rewards you
offer (pp.116–7).
The three-minute rule
Our dogs lie around most of the
time with their brains in neutral.
Asking them to think and work out
what we require during training is
tiring for them, so always make
training sessions less than three
minutes long. Set a timer, as it is
easy to get carried away and to
keep on training until you are both
tired and frustrated. Instead, keep
each session short and end on a
positive note with a successful
outcome. Go back to something
easier if necessary, so that you both
look forward to the next session.
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Rewards
Rewards are essential to the success of positive training techniques.
Knowing how to use them and what your dog will fnd most rewarding
will make training him easy and more enjoyable for both of you.
º Iasy lo handle-so lhal you do nol
have lo vaIl vhIle your dog cleans
up lhe pIeces you drop on lhe 0oor
º Jhe rIghl sIze-oIIer lIllle pIeces,
aboul lhe sIze oI a small pea, Ior
small dogs, or a large pea Ior larger
dogs. Jhese are suIncIenl lo revard
an easy lask. Ise slIghlly larger
pIeces or Iood oI a hIgher value Ior
lhe more dIIncull lasks {see belov).
Games Jhese can be very useIul
II your dog Is playIul, bul has a
poor appelIle. Compared vIlh usIng
Iood, Il lakes longer lo revard hIm,
because he has lo play a shorl game
and lhen you have lo gel lhe loy
back Irom hIm aIlervards.
Iovever, Ior some dogs vho enjoy
play, games are poverIul molIvalors
Types of reward
Jo leach your dog lo do somelhIng,
you need lo revard hIm as soon
as he perIorms lhe requIred aclIon
vIlh somelhIng he really vanls.
Whal you use depends on your dog,
and lhe oplIons are lIsled belov.
Food JhIs Is easy lo use as Il can
be Ied and ealen relalIvely quIckly
lo revard lhe requIred aclIon. Iood
lhal Is used In lraInIng needs lo be:
º AppelIzIng-meal appeals lo dogs
more lhan anylhIng else
º Smelly-dogs have quIle a poor
sense oI lasle compared lo smell
º MoIsl-moIsl Iood Is usually more
appelIzIng lhan dry Iood
º SoIl-Il needs lo be easy lo break
up Inlo small pIeces
6Small rewards
Dogs will work hard for small pieces of food if
they are sufficiently appetizing. Use a treat bag
to help prevent a sticky mess in your pocket.
108
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Moist
treats
Cooked
sausage
Hot dog
pieces
Meaty
strips
Training
treats
Cheese
cubes
Cooked
chicken
Hierarchy of rewards
Find out what your dog likes and grade them
from most liked to least favorite. Use the
lowest-value rewards for easy tasks, such
as sitting (pp.122–3), and the highest-value
ones for difficult exercises, for example
coming back when playing with another
dog (pp.148–9). What your dog views as
high value will change over time, so keep
checking what he likes most. Dogs get bored
easily, and varying what is on offer will help
to keep your dog’s performance levels high.
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and they can be utilized in addition
to food as a high-value reward for
a very diffcult task.
Social approval
Social approval, in the form of
praise, affection, and social contact,
is a very powerful reward for social
animals, especially if you have a
good relationship with your dog
(pp.66–7). Since our pet dogs are
usually not starved of this kind of
attention, social approval has a
limited use by itself, but it is still a
useful addition to providing food
and games as rewards for your dog.
This is especially true when the
time comes to reduce the quantity of
rewards given (pp.116–7).
Wanting the reward
Judging what your dog wants at
any moment in time and offering
it for successful compliance is key
to success. Just as you may crave
different things at different times
of the day or week, so it is for your
dog. Ensure he is hungry before
training him with food, and that he
is active and ready to play if you are
using toys. If he is not interested in
training, try to work out what would
interest and motivate him more.
6Social approval
Really make a connection with your dog when
giving him social approval, as this will mean a lot
more to him than just a quick pat on the head.
6Playing with toys
Games with toys make a good and enjoyable
reward for dogs who know how to play. They
are also useful for those with small appetites or
who are not interested in traditional food treats.
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“Find out what
your dog likes,
then grade them
from most liked to
least favorite.”
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Make it happen
We cannot explain to our dogs what we want them to do, so we need to
fnd other means of getting them to do the actions we require. There are a
variety of ways in which you can get your dog to carry out certain actions.
5Follow the treat
Luring is an easy way to get a novice dog to
move into different positions so that you can
reward the action.
6Learning from others
Dogs may join in with natural behavior, such as
barking at strangers, but they find it difficult to
learn complex tasks by mimicry.
you want him to go. The piece of
food needs to be big enough for the
dog to lick and chew at, so you can
keep him interested while you move
it. Where his nose goes, his head
and body will follow.
As soon as you get your dog into
position, feed the treat as a reward,
so he learns that going into that
position brings a good result. This
increases the likelihood of him
doing it again more easily next time.
Luring is particularly useful for
inexperienced puppies and dogs.
Shaping If you reward your dog for
making any movement that takes
him in the direction you want him
to go, he will learn, eventually, to go
in that direction to get the reward.
You are shaping his behavior by
rewarding him initially for making
small movements towards your
desired goal, then gradually
allowing him to move closer to
the goal before rewarding him.
This method is useful for more
experienced dogs who know that
you want them to do something and
try different actions to fnd out what
it is. It is similar to the game of “Hot
and Cold” played by children.
Getting the action
To achieve certain actions, try
the following methods:
Luring You can lure your dog into
position by holding an appetizing
morsel of food against his nose and
moving it slowly in the direction
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6Target training
Targeting is used to get dogs to do things they
would not do naturally. This dog is learning
how to close a cabinet door with his nose.
Targeting If you teach your dog
over several sessions to touch a
target with either his nose or paw,
you can then move the target to get
him to move to different locations.
Try using this technique if you want
your dog to do something that is not
a natural behavior, such as turning
off a light or pressing a pedal.
Mimicry Dogs fnd it diffcult to
mimic the behavior of other
animals, so this technique is not
very effective for training purposes.
Dogs will learn by joining in with
natural behaviors, such as barking
at strangers, but they fnd it diffcult
to learn complicated tasks from
others in this way.
Modelling A common way to make
a dog sit is to push down on his
hindquarters. However, not only is
this dangerous for puppies or fragile
dogs with growing or weak joints,
but it also causes a resistance as the
dog pushes up against the pressure.
Any resistance means that he takes
longer to learn what you want of him.
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WALK CLOSE
The signal for “walk
close” is made by holding
your hand on your hip.
Because movements are
more effective as signals,
you can pat your side
initially so that your dog
moves closer to
investigate your
hand before
rewarding him.
Eventually, you will
no longer need to
move your hand to
give the signal.
gg132–3
WAIT
To make this signal,
hold your hand flat,
then bring it down
slowly towards your
dog’s face and hold it
stationary. Try to position
your hand so that your
dog can still see
your face; otherwise,
he may move in
order to try to
see around it.
gg128–9
DOWN
This hand signal
consists of
a downward
motion with a flat
hand. Begin with
an exaggerated
movement that
starts near your
shoulder and ends
at the thigh. The
palm should be
facing down. Once
your dog knows
this, reduce the
movement slowly.
gg126–7
STAND
For the “stand” hand
signal, hold a flat
hand in front of
your dog’s nose
and then draw it
away. This action
is very similar to
the luring action
and your dog
should learn it
easily. Reduce
the signal gradually
once your dog
learns what
you require.
gg130–1
Hand signals
Once your dog can do the required action, you need to put it on cue. Hand
signals should be given just before the action (pp.112–3) so that your dog can
make the connection. After enough repetition, your dog will perform the
action when you give the hand signal.
COME
This signal consists of
a movement of the
arms held alongside
the body and then
brought out from
the body to the
position shown
here. When you
first begin training
this exercise, you
will be crouching, so the
movement is made with
the hands together, and
then the arms are taken
out to either side.
gg124–5
SIT
This hand signal is an
upward motion with a
flat hand. Begin with an
exaggerated movement
that starts near your thigh
and ends at your shoulder.
Make sure the palm
is facing up. Once
your dog knows
this, reduce the
movement
gradually.
gg122–3
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Timing
Timing is really important to successful training. Good timing speeds
up the training process and aids communication with your dog so that
he can easily understand what you require of him.
Speed is essential
Delivering a reward as soon as
your dog has done the required
action is the only way you have
to tell him he has done what you
wanted him to do. Remember that
actions that are rewarded are
likely to be repeated. Since you
want your chosen action to be
repeated, and not the action that
follows it (e.g. the sit rather than
the getting up), you need to be
quick so that you reward at a time
when your dog is still thinking
about the sit rather than about
getting up to move on.
Instant reward
Watch your dog closely while you
encourage the correct action. Learn
to anticipate when he will go into
position or do the correct action
6Reward immediately
When teaching your dog to sit, watch him
carefully and reward him just as his bottom
touches the floor. This will let him know exactly
what is required next time.
4Be prepared
Taking more than two seconds to give the
reward means that your dog will have moved
on to thinking about something else instead
of what you wanted to reward.
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and have the reward ready. You
need to deliver rewards instantly,
so keep food and toys close and
begin to reach for them as soon as
your dog begins to do the action.
Be careful, however. If you hold
rewards where a dog can see them
while he is thinking about what to
do, they will only distract rather
than encourage him, so keep them
out of sight—unless, of course, you
are using them as a lure.
Once your dog has performed
the desired action, you must
reward him immediately, so have
everything in place. For example,
try keeping a reward concealed in
your hand, but keep it well away
from your dog’s nose—otherwise,
the smell will take his attention
away from training. If you are too
late and reward after your dog has
“Learn to anticipate when he will go into
position or do the correct action and have
the reward ready.”
moved on to thinking about
something else, you will be
rewarding this action instead and
your dog will not learn what you
want him to do. He will be confused
about what you want or will
respond in a way that is different
to what you expected, and training
will be a confusing, frustrating
experience for you both.
Timing cues
To put an action on cue—in other
words, to teach your dog to respond
to a signal such as the command
6Timing is crucial
The voice cue and hand signal should be given
first. Then lure your dog into position if he does
not understand the cue or signal. As soon as he
has done the required action, reward instantly.
After many repetitions, leave a gap of a few
moments between the cue/signal and the action,
to see if your dog understands what to do.
word “sit” or a hand pointing to
the ground (see above)—give the
cue just before you make the
action happen. Repeated use of
the cue will allow your dog to
associate the cue with the
desired action. Eventually he will
Steps to learning cues
When you teach a new action, first
use a lure or other encouragement
over several sessions until your dog
can do it easily. Then add the voice
cue and hand signals over several
sessions so he begins to make the
connection. Later, add a short gap
of a few counts between the cue
and making the action happen to give
your dog time to work out what you
want. At first, reward any small
movement towards what you want.
Later, wait for the complete action
before rewarding.
Hand signal and voice cue Action Positive reinforcement
begin to respond as soon as he
sees or hears the cue, rather than
waiting for the lure or whatever
else you are using to gain the
desired response.
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Associations
Dogs learn a set of associations when we teach them to respond to
a cue such as “sit”. For the cue to work anywhere, we need to teach it
to our dogs in a variety of different situations.
any of these associations, and the
puppy will not understand what
you want and will remain standing.
To overcome this, teach your dog
the same lesson in many different
situations. As the cue is the only
association that these experiences
have in common, he will eventually
learn to link the cue with the correct
action to win his reward.
You also need to teach your dog
the same lesson in many different
positions relative to you. Otherwise,
if you teach him to sit in front of
you, and then ask him to do it when
he is beside you, he will move
around to sit in front of you, where
he was previously rewarded. By
varying your position relative to
him during training, he will learn
there is a reward for responding to
the cue wherever he is.
All this takes a long time, so be
patient. Never punish your dog for
not obeying you—he simply does
not understand. Instead, show him
what is required, and make sure
you reward him well for doing it.
6Practice in different places
This puppy is learning to sit on cue when
standing in front of his owner in the yard—
a different location to where he previously
learned to carry out this action.
7Learned associations
This puppy has learned that he will get his food
if he puts his bottom on the floor when facing
his owner as she holds the dish.
Responding to cues
When a dog is being taught to
respond to a cue, he is learning to
associate a hand signal or word with
a particular action. By repetition
over several training sessions, he
will learn to carry out the action
whenever he sees or hears the cue.
Be aware that as well as learning
the cue, your dog is learning a set
of associations surrounding the
event. When we teach a puppy to
sit for his dinner, we may think he
has learned the word “sit”. What
he has actually learned is that
when he is standing in front of you
in the kitchen and you hold his
dish in your hand, all he needs to
do to get you to place the dish on
the foor is to put his bottom on the
ground when you say “sit”. Remove
4Sitting on cue
Here the puppy is learning that he will be
rewarded for sitting when his owner is sitting in
a chair. After many training sessions, he will
begin to understand what the cue “sit” means.
Learning word cues
The only cue that most pet dogs learn is “sit”.
This is because it is repeated over and over
by owners in many different situations in their
everyday lives until their dogs know it well.
However, dogs are capable of learning hundreds
of words, provided that they are carefully taught.
If you want your dog to understand all the major
control cues, such as “come”, “down”, “stay”,
and “heel”, you need to work hard and
consistently to teach him each of these in turn
in many different situations and circumstances.
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Random rewards
It is unnecessary to continuously use food as a reward once your dog
has learned what to do. Weaning him onto occasional reinforcements
and “jackpots” improves performance and reduces his reliance on treats.
one of which is a different color,
and reward your dog only when
you pull out the colored one.
When you decide not to reward a
response to a cue, always tell him
he is correct (see box), letting him
know that he has done the right
thing by giving him lots of praise.
Jackpots
It has been shown that reducing
rewards in this way causes animals
Do not reward every time
When your dog understands
completely what you require him to
do when you give a particular hand
signal or voice cue, you can begin
reducing the number of rewards
you offer. This needs to be done
very gradually, until eventually
you are rewarding about one in
every fve responses at random.
This can be hard to do initially, but
to help keep rewards random, try
putting fve buttons in your pocket,
5Boost incentive
Giving occasional
rewards and
jackpots can
really improve
performance
because most
dogs, like the one
shown here, will try
hard to “win” more
treats more often.
6Expectations
Lack of reward can
cause confusion at
first, as your dog will
expect a reward every
time he performs the
correct action, but he
will soon learn the
new regime.
4The pay-off
A jackpot is a time
for celebrating. The
more fun your dog
has, the more he will
remember the jackpot
and the harder he
will work for it
next time.
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“Jackpots do not need to happen very
often, but most dogs will work really
hard to earn them if they appear at random.”
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to work harder and for longer to
earn treats. The effect becomes
even more pronounced if you offer
occasional “jackpots”. These are
something special your dog really
likes, such as a handful of favorite
treats together with lots of fuss and
a game. Really make an occasion
out of the “win” and celebrate with
your dog for maximum effect.
If you do this, you will fnd that he
begins to “gamble” on the outcome
in the same way you do when buying
a lottery ticket: sometimes you get
nothing, but there is a chance that
you will win a small prize or, better
still, the jackpot. Jackpots do not
need to happen very often, but dogs
will work really hard to earn them if
they appear at random. If you save
them for excellent performances,
overall performance will improve.
You may think it is unfair to
reward some responses and not
others, so it is your choice whether
to try this or not. Some dogs are
highly competitive, whereas others
will give up more easily. However,
for many dogs, random rewards
are an effective way of improving
their performance.
Reward rules
The rules for giving reinforcement
rewards and jackpots are as follows:
O Only use them when the dog
really understands what you want
him to do. Failure to reward an
action before it is completely
learned will lead to confusion.
O Make sure your dog enjoys his
“wins”. Really celebrate a “jackpot”.
O Let your dog know he was correct
and praise him well each time,
whether or not you give a reward.
O Always reward diffcult actions or
complicated sequences of behavior.
5Give him credit
Always reward
difficult actions and
hard decisions, such
as when your dog
leaves his canine
friends to come
when you call him.
6Reward every time
When training a new exercise, offer a
reward every time your dog is successful, until
he knows exactly what is expected when given
a particular cue.
Good dog
To make it easier for your dog to
know that he has done something
correctly, practice a word or phrase
you can say as soon as he does
the required action, such as “good
dog”. Make sure you reward him
soon afterwards. Over the course
of many training sessions, this
word or phrase will become linked
to the reward, and can be used to
let the dog know that he has done
the right thing. When you move
on to occasional rewards, use this
signal to let him know he has done
what you require, even when you
do not reward him.
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Reversing bad habits
Dogs can learn bad habits if they are rewarded unwittingly for unwanted
behavior, but they can be unlearned just as easily provided that their
owners know what to do and work hard to change their pets’ behavior.
giving their dogs attention when
they are performing unwanted
actions. Before you attempt this,
however, you should make sure that
your dog is getting everything he
needs in order to feel content. This
may seem obvious, but taking a look
at life from your dog’s point of view
can often reveal inadequacies in his
care that his bad behavior is
actually trying to address.
To cure your dog’s bad habit, the
whole family must work together in
ignoring the unwanted behavior.
This can be diffcult, especially if
your dog is barking excessively, in
which case warn your neighbors
and buy some ear plugs. It is really
important that you do completely
ignore the barking, which means
not speaking to your dog, looking
at him, or touching him. Just look
6No reward
Attach a long line to your dog’s collar to prevent
him getting comfortable every time he tries, so
that he learns he is not rewarded by this action.
Curing bad habits
Dogs can unlearn a “bad” behavior
if you are able to remove the reward
they receive when they do it. This is
useful for dealing with behaviors
that owners reward unwittingly,
such as jumping up (pp.188–9) or
6Act quickly
Ensure that you get him off the sofa before he
gets comfortable. This means constant vigilance
on your part until he has learned new habits.
6Get down
If your dog has already settled down and made
himself comfortable, he will have been rewarded
for getting up and is more likely to do it again.
6Getting comfortable
For some laid-back owners, relaxing on the sofa
is a perfectly acceptable behavior for their dog,
but others would prefer that he slept elsewhere.
the other way, then turn away and
pretend that you are not interested.
Do not reprimand your dog—for
some dogs, even being told off is
better than being ignored. If the
behavior is self-rewarding, such as
getting up on a comfortable sofa to
sleep, you will need to stop or
prevent it from happening while
you encourage an alternative
equally-rewarding behavior.
Worse behavior
For a short time, it is likely that
your dog’s behavior will get worse
instead of better, so be prepared for
this. When the behavior that has
worked so well for him in the past is
no longer working, he will try even
harder to get what he wants. He will
also feel frustrated, which, in turn,
will make his behavior worse.
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6A good alternative
Providing your dog with a comfortable place
to lie down, which is suitable from his point of
view, will quickly get him into good habits.
“For a short time,
your dog’s behavior
is likely to get worse
instead of better.”
However, if you continue to ignore
him, eventually he will realize that
this behavior no longer works. It
is very important to remember that
any form of bad behavior that goes
unrewarded will cease, although
it may take some time. Be patient
and wait for this to happen.
To speed up the process, reward
the behaviors you do want instead,
such as being quiet or not jumping
up. Once your dog realizes how to
get rewarded for good behavior, his
“bad” behavior, which is no longer
being rewarded, will stop.
Occasional lapses
In spite of all this training, you
must be prepared for occasional
lapses as your dog will not forget
those behaviors that have been
rewarded, especially if they were
rewarded often over a long period
of time. Just continue to ignore
them and you will fnd that they
will subside. Try not to reward
unwanted behavior unwittingly,
such as by telling him off when
he is muddy and tries to jump up.
Telling him off sometimes and
ignoring him at other times will
randomly reward him (pp.116–7)—
he will then try even harder to make
the unwanted behaviour work.
Prevention over cure
Since behaviors that are rewarded
are remembered easily, especially
during puppyhood, it is better if
they are never learnt at all. If you
prevent a puppy from practicing
a behavior until he is a year old, it is
likely he will never think of doing it.
If he is never encouraged onto
a sofa or bed when young, he will
get into the habit of going to his
bed to sleep. If everyone bends
down to greet him and prevents
him jumping up on visitors, he
will learn to stay on all four paws.
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Good grounding
A well-trained dog is a real pleasure
to live with, and can be included in your
everyday activities instead of being left
at home. He will be easier to manage,
leaving you more time for play and
other fun-filled activities that make dog
ownership such a joy. Teaching your dog the
simple exercises shown in this section will
give you a way to communicate your wishes
to your dog and allow you to control his
actions. These exercises will
also lay the foundations for
the more complex training
outlined in later sections, which
will advance his education
and allow you to teach him
useful skills, interesting
tricks, and sports.
HAPPY HEELWORK
Positive training using praise,
rewards, and treats results in a
dog that enjoys training sessions
and tries really hard to please you.
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Sit is one of the easiest exercises to teach and a very good place to start
training your dog. It is the exercise that most owners teach frst and
the cue that is repeated most often throughout a dog’s life.
16
Get his attention
With your dog standing, hold
a tasty treat in your fingers
and allow him to lick a small
piece of it. Then slowly raise
the treat, luring his nose
steadily upwards.
24
Raise the treat
Move the treat gradually over
your dog’s head, giving him
time to follow it up and
backwards with his nose.
Wait for his back legs to
begin folding naturally.
Sit
A dog that is sitting is not jumping up, running off,
barging through doorways, or misbehaving in any
other way. Teaching your dog to sit gives you
control and allows you to keep him in one place.
In addition, sitting quickly becomes the posture
that most dogs adopt if they see that their owner
has something they want, because they have been
rewarded most often in this position.
GOOD PRACTICE
Once your dog can easily be lured into
the sit position, give the voice cue “sit”
just before you start. Continue to do so
as you teach him to respond to a hand
signal (right). After a number of sessions,
once your dog is readily responding to
the hand signal, you can begin to phase
it out by making it less exaggerated.
If you always precede the hand signal
and lure with the word “sit”, your dog
will eventually learn to respond to the
voice cue alone.
Don’t forget to train the sit exercise
in different places, with your dog in
different positions in relation to you
(pp.114–5), and with increasing
distractions going on all around.
Hand signal
Once your dog can
easily be lured into
the sit, teach him to
respond to a hand
signal. Get his
attention, give a
clear hand signal,
wait a moment,
then lure your dog
into a sit as before.
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Reward
As soon as your dog’s rear
end touches the floor, give
him the treat and praise him
enthusiastically. Feed him
two or three more treats
while he remains sitting.
If you are struggling to keep your dog
focused during training sessions,
increase the value of the treat you
are offering (pp.206–7) to keep him
interested for longer.
It is important to hold the treat in the
right place when teaching this exercise.
Take care not to hold it too high above
your dog’s nose or too far back.
Jumping up
If your dog has to
jump up to reach
the treat, lower
your hand so that
he can reach it
throughout the
luring process.
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Come when called is an essential lesson. It will allow you to let your dog
safely off his lead, confdent that you can recall him if you need to,
and enable you to give him more exercise and freedom.
16
Tempt him
Start this exercise somewhere
familiar to your dog. Ask a friend to
hold your dog’s collar while you show
him an enticing training treat and
allow him to sniff at it.
24
”Come!”
Move a short distance (about 2m/6ft)
away and crouch down at your dog’s
level with your arms open wide. Call
him enthusiastically, encouraging him
to come towards you.
Come when called
The early stages of the come when called exercise,
shown here, are easy. Once your dog has learned
these, you can build up reliable recalls outside the
home as well (pp.146–9). Having a dog that comes to
you when called makes life easier in both home and
garden. Knowing that you can recall him even from
a distance will give you peace of mind and make
walks safer and more enjoyable for you both.
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Lure him in
As your dog reaches you, having responded
to your call, hold out the treat so that he can
see it, and lure him towards you.
46
Take his collar
Holding the treat at his nose height, coax him
towards you. Lower your other hand, so you
can gently take hold of his collar under his chin.
57
”Well done!”
When your dog reaches you,
keep holding his collar as you
feed him the treat, and praise
him warmly, so he learns to
enjoy being with you and will
come again when he is called.
GOOD PRACTICE
When practising this exercise, call your
dog only when there is a good chance
he will respond immediately. This will
encourage good habits. If your dog does
not come to you, try using a more
interesting treat (p.106).
If he is shy, turn sideways when you
call and avoid direct eye contact, so
that you don’t intimidate him.
Don’t call too often once your dog knows
what to do; call him only when you have
something worthwhile to offer him.
Never tell your dog off for coming to you
when you’ve called, even if he does not
come to you immediately.
Keep your call consistent in tone and
volume, even when you call in an
emergency. He may not recognize
a louder or deeper call.
“Come” body signal
Dogs learn body signals easily. They are useful if
your dog is far away and cannot hear you. Slowly
progress from crouching (opposite) to standing.
“Always make
the reward
worthwhile
for your dog.”
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Teaching your dog to lie down on request is a fundamental exercise—it
makes living with him easier, and allows you to control him in a variety
of situations, for example when you have visitors.
1 6
Get his attention
Find a quiet, familiar location to
teach this exercise. With your
dog sitting (pp.122–3), lure his
head slowly downward using a
treat. Allow him to lick and
chew a small piece of the treat
so he stays focused.
24
Lure him down
Keep moving the treat slowly
downward. If your dog loses
concentration, start the process
again and feed him the treat
just before you reach the point
where he gave up previously.
Replace that treat with another
and try again immediately.
Down
Down is a building block of basic training and
allows you to teach advanced exercises such as
settle (pp.192–3) and down at a distance (pp.152–3).
It is easy to teach, but you will need patience at frst
to lure your dog into the right position. Reward him
as often for lying down on request as you reward
him for sitting and he will do both with equal ease.
GOOD PRACTICE
When first teaching the “down” hand
signal (pp.110–11), make an exaggerated
hand movement, bringing the hand with
the food in it all the way to the floor so
that your dog can follow it.
Be aware that the down position can
make your dog feel more vulnerable in any
situation that makes him insecure, such
as in places where other dogs are present.
When your dog has learned the hand
signal for down, teach him to respond to
a voice command. Give the command
“down” just before you start, then give
your hand signal. Eventually, he will lie
down when he hears the word “down”.
Once he has learned this exercise, teach
your dog to lie down in different places,
in various positions in relation to you
(pp.114–5). Eventually, he will do so in
the midst of a wide range of distractions.
Hand signal
You can also
teach your dog
to lie down using
a hand signal.
Get his attention,
give a clear hand
signal (pp.110–11),
then wait a few
seconds before
luring him down
as above.
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Reward
As soon as your dog’s elbows
touch the ground, feed him
the treat. Praise him warmly
and reward him with an extra
treat while he remains in
the down position to let him
know that this is what you
wanted him to do.
Avoid discomfort
Dogs with deep, narrow chests or sparse belly
fur may find it uncomfortable to lie on hard
floors—try using a thick, squashy bed instead.
Under the bridge
If you are struggling to teach the down position,
make a bridge with your legs and lure your dog
through. He will have to lie down to earn his treat.
Try again
If your dog stands, ask him to sit again, then
hold the treat further away from him so that he
has room to lie down without going backwards.
“Only ask
your dog to
lie down in
environments
where he
feels safe
and secure.”
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Wait is a simple exercise to teach, and will make it easy for you to keep
your dog in one position while you do something else, such as put his
food down on the foor or open the door to go out.
Wait
Teach your dog to wait only when he has learned to
sit reliably (pp.122–3). It is not a very interesting
exercise for your dog to learn as he has nothing to
do, so make sure he is tired and therefore happy to
rest in one position when you start teaching. Once
you have taught him that all he needs to do to get
his reward is stay in one place, you can begin to
teach him to do so while you move around him.
15
Sit, then wait
Ask your dog to sit. When
he is sitting and you have his
attention, say “wait”, and give
your hand signal for wait. If he
moves, try again, but move your
hand more slowly as you give
the signal. A hand signal given
quickly may cause him to move.
27
Reward
Reward him well with two or
three treats while he stays in
place. Practice this until he
waits reliably, then leave a
short gap before rewarding him.
Continue over several sessions,
extending the gap until he will
wait for up to two minutes.
“Never leave your dog in the
wait position in a potentially
dangerous place.”
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GOOD PRACTICE
Once your dog understands what you
want him to do, you can ask him to wait
in practical situations, for example at a
doorway (pp.194–5). On release, he will
have something exciting to do, such as
running out of the door. Always reward
him well in “wait” before you release
him. Otherwise, his wait will become
unreliable as he begins to anticipate the
reward associated with being released.
37
Step slowly back
Give your voice cue and hand signal, then
step one foot backwards. Slowly transfer
your weight onto that foot, then return and
reward your dog. If he moves, reposition
him and repeat, but step away more slowly.
44
Circle your dog
Continue over several sessions, gradually
moving further away from your dog. Take
care when moving behind him as dogs
often get up when they can no longer
follow you easily with their eyes.
56
Distance work
Over several sessions, when your dog
understands what he has to do, you
will be able to move even further away.
Always return to reward him during
training, so he knows he has to stay
on that spot to receive his treats.
Hand signal
Wait is one of the
only exercises
where you teach
the hand signal
from the start.
Keep your hand
signals slow and
calm during early
training.
Stay down
You can also
teach this
exercise with
your dog in the
down position
(pp.126–7).
Down is often
a more settled
position.
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Teaching your dog to stand when asked
is useful for getting him into position
if you need to towel him dry. Having
a dog that will stand patiently is also
invaluable on visits to the vets.
14
Present a treat
With your dog in the
sit position, place a
tasty treat against his
nose so he can lick and
nibble it, and then start
to move it away slowly.
26
Lure him toward you
As your dog moves his head forward to try to reach
the treat, keep it moving slowly away from him until
he has to get up and move forward to get to it.
Stand
The stand position is useful if you are planning to
show your dog, and it has many practical applications
too, such when you want to put a harness on your dog
or wipe his muddy feet. Before you begin training your
dog to stand following the stages shown here, he needs
to know how to sit when you ask (pp.122–3).
GOOD PRACTICE
Move the treat just enough to make your
dog stand up to get it, but bring the treat
back to him quickly once he has done so
to prevent him moving forwards.
Give the voice cue “stand” just before
you lure your dog into the stand. When
your dog has learned the hand signal,
leave a gap between the voice cue and
the hand signal to give him time to
respond to the voice cue alone.
Don’t forget to practise the stand
exercise in different places, with your
dog in different positions in relation to
you (pp.114–5) and, eventually, with
distractions going on all around.
Show dogs are required to stand still for
long periods. If you own a show dog,
make “stand” the default position by
requesting it when most owners would
ask their dog to sit. Gradually lengthen
the time he stands before rewarding him,
so he learns to hold the position.
Hand signal
Once your dog
has mastered
the stand, you
can develop the
luring action into
a hand signal,
using an
exaggerated
movement.
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Praise him
As soon as he stands, and before he steps
forward, feed him the treat and praise him
effusively. Practice over several sessions,
gradually flattening your palm and building
the lure into a hand signal (below left).
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This is one of the most diffcult exercises to teach,
but it is so rewarding when your dog learns to
walk happily beside you on a loose leash. You
need lots of patience to achieve this, following and
practicing the steps shown here and on pp.134–5.
16
Position him
Hold the leash in your right hand, and
against your body. Hold a tasty treat
in your other hand and lure your dog into
position alongside your left leg, feeding
the treat when your dog is in place.
27
“Heel”
Show your dog another treat and raise it
above his head—hold it so he can see it
clearly. Get his attention by saying his
name and give the voice cue “heel”.
Walking on a loose leash 1
Taking regular walks with your
dog is important for both the
mental and physical well-being
of your dog, and provides health
benefts for you as well. Teach
this skill as early in your dog’s
life as possible, as a dog that is
comfortable walking next to you
on a loose leash is a pleasure to
walk. Once you have taught this
exercise, practice in a variety
of locations, with increasing
distractions. Then teach him not
to pull on the leash (pp.134–5),
but to walk nicely wherever he is.
GOOD PRACTICE
At the beginning of each training session
and whenever you are in a new area,
reward your dog after only taking one
pace until your dog learns what to do.
Once your dog is walking beside you,
show the hand signal (right) just before
you set off. If he moves out of position,
stand still and lure him back into place
before taking a step forward.
During training, choose which side of
you your dog should walk and stick to it
to avoid confusion. Once your dog knows
what is expected, you can train him to
walk on the other side of you if required.
It is difficult, at first, to coordinate leash,
treats, and dog. Stop and reposition your
dog as necessary, rewarding him when
he is in the correct position. Only move
forward when ready, and praise well
when your dog walks close.
Hand signal
Teach your dog
to respond to
a hand signal
(pp.110–1). A flat
palm positioned
at your hip is
a clear signal
for your dog to
stay close.
“Gradually extend
the number of paces
you take each time.”
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Practice
Continue in this way, over several
sessions, gradually extending the
number of paces you take each
time before rewarding him.
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Step forward and reward
Immediately take a pace forward and, as
your dog follows, reward him with the treat
and lots of praise. Repeat, rewarding after
two paces, then three, and so on.
Leash length
The leash should hang down slightly from your
dog’s collar when standing next to you with the
handle held at your waist, but not touch the floor.
No jumping
If your dog jumps up to get the treat while you
are walking, raise the treat higher and keep
walking until he stops jumping, then reward him.
Mind over matter
Try not to use the leash to control your dog, and
keep the food lure in the hand nearest to your
dog so he doesn’t try to walk in front of you.
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Training your dog not to pull is a vital part of learning to walk on a loose
leash. Before teaching this exercise, ensure that your dog has learned
how to walk next to you, and does so easily (pp.132–3).
16
Walk normally
Walk normally until your dog
begins to pull ahead. Keep the
leash-holding hand held into
your middle to give a fixed
length of leash.
27
Stop abruptly
Watch the leash carefully and stop abruptly
when the leash begins to go tight. Keep
your hands against your body and resist
the pull from your dog.
36
Lure her back into position
Stand still and use a treat to get your dog’s
attention. Lure her back into the correct
position by your side, facing forward. When
she is in the right place, reward her with
the treat and praise enthusiastically.
Walking on a loose leash 2
Whenever you take your dog to a new and exciting
place, she is likely to be distracted by the unfamiliar
sights and smells around her. Before you can teach
her that pulling on the leash is unacceptable in any
surroundings, it is essential that she has learned
that she has to walk close to you on a loose leash
instead (pp.132–3). Start this exercise by walking
normally with your dog on a loose leash beside you.
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Be alert
Watch out for distractions that may cause your dog to
pull, such as other dogs, and stop as necessary. If you
stop abruptly and reposition every time the leash goes
tight, your dog will learn that pulling is not rewarding.
54
Relax and enjoy
Keep practicing this exercise until your dog has learned
not to pull. If she forgets and pulls forward, stop and
reposition her immediately. Reward her when she
makes an effort to keep the leash loose. You can then
relax your hands and give her more freedom.
GOOD PRACTICE
Teaching your dog not to pull on the
leash when out walking takes time and
patience, especially if she has been
pulling for some time. Be consistent with
your training and expect to stop as many
as 40 times during your first walk. You
will need to stop less frequently as she
learns that pulling is not rewarding.
Good practice
When teaching this exercise, allow extra time
for walks so you can practice. If you don’t have
time, use a head collar (shown here) or harness.
Too much energy
It is easier to teach a well-exercised dog to walk
on a loose leash. Take your dog for a run or play
games before training to use up excess energy.
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Once your dog has learned to play, teaching him to retrieve items on
demand will ensure that he spends more time running after an object
than you do. The frst step is to enthuse your dog with a favorite toy.
16
Creating excitement
Begin by playing with one of your dog’s favorite toys.
Have fun, and be as enthusiastic as possible to drum
up his excitement. Keep the toy moving and tease
him with the prospect of playing with the toy.
244
Throw the toy
Once your dog is excited, throw the toy for him to
chase and capture. It is best to do this in a familiar
area, where it is quiet and there are no distractions.
Retrieve 1
The key to helping your dog learn the retrieve
is to create a sense of enthusiasm and excitement
for a favourite toy. Once he has learned to chase
and pick up a toy, you can progress to asking him
to bring it back to you (pp.138–9). Follow the steps
below, practising over several sessions until your
dog shows instant enthusiasm for running out and
picking up the toy whenever it is thrown.
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Dropped it
If your dog drops the toy, stop
all praise. Either encourage him
to pick the toy up by pointing
at it and making encouraging
noises, or pick it up and repeat
steps 1 and 2.
GOOD PRACTICE
Some dogs enjoy possessing a toy while
others like to chase it. Working out what
your dog prefers will help you to make
this game more enjoyable.
Keep the toys you practice the retrieve
with special by hiding them from your
dog at times when you are not playing.
Control reduces enthusiasm, so at this
stage avoid giving commands, such as
asking your dog to sit first, and just
try to create as much excitement and
enthusiasm for the exercise as possible.
Your attitude during this exercise is
important. You need to be animated and
enjoying yourself. Only try this when you
are in a good mood and full of energy!
36
“Well done!”
As soon as your dog picks up
the toy, praise him, continuing
to do so for as long as he carries
it. Do not touch the toy. If your
dog comes to you, praise him
and stroke his back and body,
avoiding the head and neck.
Outdoor enthusiasm
Try to excite your dog to the same level of
enthusiasm whether you are in your backyard,
in the park, or out for a walk.
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When your dog plays enthusiastically with a toy and carries it readily, it
is time to ask her to bring it back to you. This exercise builds on the steps
learned in Retrieve 1 (pp.138–9) and introduces the “drop” command.
16
Encourage retrieval
Throw a toy and encourage your dog to
pick it up. Then move backwards
enthusiastically coaxing her to come
towards you.
25
Praise well
Keep still and let your dog
approach you. Stroke her
body, keeping your hands
away from her head and
neck. Continue to praise
her until she begins to lose
interest in holding the toy.
Retrieve 2

Good girl!

Teaching your dog to retrieve forms the basis for
more advanced training exercises, such as chase
recall (pp.154–5). While some dogs retrieve easily,
any dog can be taught this skill with suffcient
practice. It is important to be patient throughout
your training sessions as you can easily teach your
dog to avoid you if you try to pry the toy from her
mouth before she is ready to release it.
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Reel her in
If your dog refuses to come
near you while holding the
toy, use a long training lead
to bring her to you, coaxing
her forward as you do so.
“Never chase
a dog when you
want to get a
toy back.”
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Letting go
Once your dog comes to you readily
with the toy in her mouth, you can
teach her to drop it on command.
Tease her with another toy, or offer
her a treat. At the same time, say
“drop”, pointing at the ground, and
wait until she decides to let go.
56
Trade and treat
As soon as she drops the toy,
praise her warmly, then throw the
other toy for her to fetch or feed
the treat, continuing your praise.

Drop!

GOOD PRACTICE
If your dog comes to you with a toy
in her mouth, don’t grab it from her.
Dogs are very sensitive to our body
language and she will instinctively try
to protect her toy, especially if she has
had it taken away from her on a previous
occasion. You need to build her trust to
get her to bring the toy to you and give
it up willingly.
Never chase a dog when you want her
to give up a toy. Most dogs are faster
and more agile than their owners, and
you are unlikely to catch up.
If your dog is attached to a long line
while you are teaching this exercise, be
gentle as you bring her towards you and
take care not to get tangled in it. Make
sure there are no children, vulnerable
people, or other dogs close by.
Don’t grab
Teaching the retrieve requires patience,
so resist the urge to grab the toy out of your
dog’s mouth, as it will only delay her learning.
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Once your dog will retrieve well, you can refne his skills by teaching him
to wait while a toy is thrown, to deliver the toy to your hand rather than
dropping it on the ground, and to pick up objects other than toys.
16
Wait
Loop a length of line through your
dog’s collar and hold both ends.
Give a clear hand signal and ask
your dog to wait (pp.128–9). Throw
the toy a short distance. Use the
line to hold your dog back if he
tries to move forward.
274
Retrieve
Once the toy has landed, ask your dog to
fetch and, at the same time, drop one end of
the line so he is free to go after the toy.
Developing the retrieve
Teaching your dog to wait while a toy is thrown
will give you more control in times of excitement.
A dog that learns to give toys directly to your hand
is much easier to play with. Learning to pick up
stationary objects and objects other than toys lays
the foundation for further interesting exercises,
such as carry the groceries (pp.176–7), fetch the
leash (178–9), and put the toys away (180–1).
“Always praise when
your dog brings
something to you.”
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5”Fetch!”
Teach your dog to fetch a non-moving object.
Play a retrieval game with it first, then place
the item on the floor and ask him to fetch.
5Tease
To teach your
dog to pick up
something
other than a
toy, start by
tying a soft
item to it so
that it feels
similar. Tease
him and play
a fun game.
6Appetizing exchange
To teach your dog to deliver the toy to your
hand, ask him to come right up to you, and
praise him as he does so. When he is within
reach, offer a tasty treat, and place your
other hand underneath to catch the ball.
GOOD PRACTICE
When you first ask your dog to wait
before fetching, make sure he is well
exercised and throw an unexciting toy
a short distance. Work up to asking him
to wait to retrieve when he is full of
energy and very excited about the
prospect of giving chase.
If your dog drops the ball before you
have had a chance to take it, ask him to
“fetch” again. Praise him while he holds
the ball to let him know this is what
you wanted. Then try the appetizing
exchange (above) again, substituting the
ball for a tasty treat. Your dog will soon
learn that he will only earn the treat if he
delivers the ball directly into your hand.
Search and
retrieve
You can train
your dog to
retrieve any
number of things
and in a variety
of situations,
including finding
a lost set of keys
in a field.
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Advanced
training
Developing skills
Showing off
Housework
Best behavior
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Developing skills
Well-trained dogs make walks and
daily exercise sessions a pleasure.
Teaching your dog to come back when
called, whatever he is doing or
whatever is going on around him, takes
time, but it is really worth the effort.
Training him to check in with you before
running to meet strangers or other dogs
gives you more control, and stops him being
a nuisance to other walkers. Educating your
dog to stop chasing, especially
if he has strong chase instincts,
and to sit at a distance, keeps
him in check and could even save
his life. This section builds on
your basic training, and helps
you to teach your dog some
really useful life skills.
REALITY TRAINING
Training basic exercises in real-life
scenarios will result in a dog that
knows how to behave well in all
situations and circumstances.
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Once you have taught the basic recall (pp.124–5), it is important to teach
your dog to come back to you even when she is busy doing other things,
so that she learns to respond to you no matter what the situation.
16
Play a game
Ask a friend to play an exciting
game with your dog and her favourite
toy a few metres from where you
are standing.
37
Recall and reward
Keep calling until your dog comes
to you—it is important that both
of you ignore her until she does.
When she reaches you, praise her
well and feed her a tasty treat.
25
Interrupt play
Call your dog loudly to interrupt
the play. As soon as your friend
hears you call, she needs to stop
playing with the toy and hide it
from the dog’s sight.
Advanced recalls 1
Training your dog to return to you whatever
the circumstances is a valuable and potentially
life-saving command for your dog to master. Dogs
are curious by nature, so it is important to instill a
strong desire to come whenever you call in order to
combat this innate curiosity. Remember to reward
generously during your training sessions to make
the experience as positive as possible for your dog.
“Practice this
exercise at home,
and then on walks,
until your dog
regularly comes
to you as soon
as you call.”

Come!

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Release
When your dog
has successfully
responded to your
call, allow her to
return to her game,
so that she learns
that coming to you
is just a pleasant
interruption, rather
than an end to
her enjoyment.
55
Rehearse
After a few practice sessions,
your dog will learn that her
game is over until she has
come to you when you’ve called,
and so will begin to leave her
play as soon as you start to call.
GOOD PRACTICE
In your first few training sessions, call
when your companion is holding the toy
but your dog is not touching it. Slowly
work up to calling when she is holding
the toy in her mouth as her recall
reliability improves.
Remember to keep training sessions
short so your dog does not lose focus.
Make sure you have irresistible treats
for this exercise, as your dog deserves to
be rewarded generously and consistently
for leaving an enjoyable game.
If you are struggling to make this
exercise work, lower the excitement
level of the game and find more enticing
treats (p.108). Some dogs may prefer
a more exciting game as a reward for
coming when called.
Hot dog!
Because this exercise involves energy-sapping
games, practise in short sessions so your dog
does not get exhausted, particularly on hot days.
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Once your dog comes back easily when you call him away from a game
with a toy, the next step is to teach him to come back from other exciting
activities, such as interesting smells and playing with other dogs.
6Distract him
Wait until your dog is really interested
in a scent, then call him excitedly,
moving away from him and putting
lots of effort into getting him to return.
Reward him generously when he does.
4Safety first
If your dog is not yet trained or he
is in a place where he could get into
trouble, use a long line to allow him
to exercise safely. Take care not to
get tangled up in the line.
Advanced recalls 2
Doing this gives you a reliable recall, no matter
what your dog happens to be doing at the time.
It will also make walks safer and allow him more
freedom. Begin with distractions that are easy to
break away from, such as sniffng, and only call if
there is a good chance that your dog will come back
to you. In this way, you can slowly build up the level
of distraction until he comes back to you regardless.
GOOD PRACTICE
You need your best treats for these
exercises as you will have to compete
for your dog’s attention with very
exciting events.
Some dogs prefer games with toys to
treats. Use whatever rewards work
during training sessions and future
recalls, and don’t forget to praise your
dog well when he does what you ask.
When you start practicing this exercise,
call your dog when you are close to him
as it is more likely that he will respond.
As he gets better at recalls, call him
from further away and increase the
number and types of distractions
competing for his attention.
Use a long line
If your dog will not leave other dogs when you
call, use a long line to bring him to you, reward
him well, and then let him go and play again.
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Playtime
Play with another dog is very exciting, so it
is unlikely that you will be able to call your
dog away from these games during the first
fun-filled minutes. Allow them to play and
wait until the excitement levels are lower.
27
Successful call
Call at a moment when play has subsided
and your dog can be distracted. Call loudly
and enthusiastically, moving back and rattling
food bags or squeaking a toy to attract him.
34
Reward well
Reward your dog really well for coming to
you. Use your highest-value food treats and
games, together with plenty of praise, to
ensure success next time you call. Then let
him return to his games with the other dog.
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Teaching your dog to check in with you before running to greet strangers
or other dogs while out on walks allows you to control such situations
and avoid any problems that may otherwise arise.
1 6
Really sociable
A well-socialized dog will want
to run and greet other dogs and
their owners she sees while
you are exercising her.
24
Recall
Before your dog gets too close
to the approaching dog and
owner, call her back to you.
If your dog does not return
immediately, work on her recall
reliability by calling her to you
as soon as you see someone
approaching in the distance.
Checking in
Before you begin teaching your dog to check in
with you, she must have learned the basic recall
exercise (pp.124–5). Training your dog to return
to you before running to meet new people or other
animals will help to keep her safe from any
potentially dangerous dogs and will also prevent
her from causing undue stress when encountering
people who may be wary of dogs.
“Call your dog
if you see
unfamiliar
dogs or people
approaching.”
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”Good girl!”
Reward your dog with effusive
praise and her favorite treats or
a game for returning to you.
Always reward your dog well
for responding to your call.
45
Careful greeting
If you think it is
appropriate, you
can now allow your
dog to greet the
other dog and her
owner. It is usually
best if the dogs are
allowed to meet off
leash and are able
to sniff each other.
GOOD PRACTICE
This technique is particularly useful if
your dog is large or looks intimidating,
especially if she is naturally friendly
with either people or other dogs.
Practice this exercise until your dog
automatically checks in with you when
she sees someone approaching.
It is better if dogs meet off leash if
possible. However, if the other dog is on
a leash, attach a leash to your dog, and
keep your dog away to prevent her from
scaring the other dog, who is restricted.
Similarly, if your dog is likely to jump up,
put her on a leash so that you can control
her movements and prevent her from
jumping up on the other person.
Ignoring others
If you don’t think
a meeting is
appropriate,
keep your dog
on the leash and
keep her gaze
focused on
you until the
distraction
has passed.
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Sit at a distance is easy to train once you have taught your dog to sit on
cue, and it is a useful way to get him to stop when he is away from you.
This helps to keep him safe, and could save his life in an emergency.
15
Ask him to sit
With a friend holding your dog’s leash,
stand just in front and ask him to sit.
Give the hand signal to help him get it
right, and reward him when he sits.
Sit at a distance
This exercise can be taught once your dog will
sit readily on cue (pp.122–3), either in front or
beside you, in any situation, and with distractions
going on around you (pp.114–5). Your dog may
experience confusion at frst, because previous
rewards came for sitting near to you. You need to
be patient to give him time to understand what
you are asking him to do.
27
Move back
Take two paces back from your
dog and repeat stage one,
again using the hand signal and
rewarding him when he sits.
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GOOD PRACTICE
The sit at a distance exercise can be
used in emergencies when you want
your dog to stop immediately—for
example, if a child nearby has become
frightened of him running around, or if
a car unexpectedly approaches. Always
go to reward him where he is sitting, so
he learns to keep still.
Remember to begin training this exercise
in a quiet location with no distractions.
As your dog learns the concept of sitting
at a distance, begin training in areas that
offer more distractions, where he will
find it more difficult to concentrate.
You can teach your dog to lie down at a
distance in the same way. This is a more
reliable position for some dogs.
Safety stop
Being able to stop your dog successfully when
he is approaching danger is important. It is also
useful when it is not safe to recall him.
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153
36
Lure but don’t reward
If your dog does not respond,
ask your friend to lure him
into a sit (pp.122–3), but
not to feed the treat to your
dog at this point.
44
Now reward
Move forward quickly to
reward him. He will soon
learn the reward comes
from you when he sits.
57
Practice
Progress slowly, gradually
moving further away from your
dog over several sessions.
Eventually, you can dispense
with your friend’s assistance,
but start again from stage one
when you do so.
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“The sit at a
distance
exercise can
be used in
emergencies.”
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Being able to recall your dog from a chase is essential if you want him to
be under complete control and safe to let off the leash. Begin by teaching
him a chase recall using toys, and progress to other things he may chase.
16
Line up
Ask a friend to help you.
Position her so that she is
facing you at a distance from
where she can easily catch
a ball that you throw.
24
Throw the ball
Tease your dog with the toy,
then throw it past your friend
for your dog to chase. Throw
the toy at a height and speed
that allows your friend to
catch it if necessary.
Chase recall

Leave!

This exercise is an important lesson for all dogs,
and especially for breeds in which the chase
instinct is accentuated. Teaching the chase recall
with toys gives you the foundation of this exercise.
You can then progress to practicing in real life
situations, near things your dog is likely to chase,
such as bicycles or other animals, to ensure that
you have complete control when you really need it.
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Catch
For one in five throws at random, throw
the toy so that your friend catches it and
tucks it out of sight. As the toy leaves
your hand, shout “leave!”.
46
Throw another ball
When your dog looks back at you to get
help in finding the ball, tease him with
a toy he prefers and throw it in the
opposite direction for him to chase.
GOOD PRACTICE
Only stop your dog running out after the
toy once in every five throws at random.
If you stop him more than this, he will
become hesitant about running out after
the ball and you will lose his enthusiasm.
Don’t run your dog to the point of
exhaustion. Up to 20 chases are enough
for one session depending on the fitness
level of the dog and how warm the
weather is. Because you can only
stop him four times in 20 chases, the
opportunities to learn the chase recall
are limited, so be patient and keep
practicing until he learns what to do.
Once your dog has learned to stop
chasing a toy as soon as you call, set up
other chase scenarios so you can
practice recalling him, for example with
joggers or bicycles. Use a training line
for safety until you are sure of success.
“Stop!”
Achieve the same goal by stopping your dog as he
runs past you towards the toy. Step forward and
stop him verbally. As he stops, throw another toy.
“As the toy
leaves your hand,
shout ‘leave!’.”
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Once your dog has learned basic lessons at home, teach him to respond
to your cues in a variety of places, with different things happening
around him. Begin with small distractions and progress to larger ones.
Learning with distractions
Training your dog in the safety of your home is a
good place to begin. However, if this is the only
place you teach in, this is the only place where your
dog will behave well. You need to train your dog in
a range of situations, so he learns to be responsive
everywhere, regardless of distractions. Also teach
him to respond when he would rather be doing
something else, and reward him well for doing so.
5Stay close
Getting, and keeping,
your dog’s attention
while other dogs play
nearby takes practice.
Start far enough away
for him to concentrate,
using rewards to lessen
the appeal of the other
dogs, and gradually
move closer to them.
5Wait for greeting
Instill good manners with visitors by keeping your dog on a
leash and teaching him to sit and wait until you are ready for
him to greet them. Practice with friends until he is reliable.
7Back to basics
Even if your dog usually walks
beside you on the leash without
pulling, don’t expect him to do
so when another dog is present.
Teach him as before (pp.132–3)
until he remembers what to do.
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GOOD PRACTICE
When you begin practicing in a different
place with distractions, remember to
start the exercise again from scratch as
if you were teaching it for the first time.
Be patient and consistent, and gently
insist that your dog does as you ask. If
necessary, temporarily move further
away from the distractions until he is
able to concentrate.
If your dog finds working in some
environments stressful, you may need
to habituate him to that situation until he
is at ease there before starting training.
Start again
Your dog may
readily respond
to the cues you
give, but other
members of the
family may need
to teach him from
the beginning.
7Tricks anywhere
If you ask your dog to perform a
trick in a different place with
other people watching, he may
forget what to do. Patiently
return to the basics, so he
knows what to do next time.
4Car safety
Teach your dog to sit and wait
when the car door is opened,
until you are ready for him to
jump out. Practice this until he
waits automatically. This could
help prevent an accident.
“Many owners only
train their dogs in
one location, which
can mean the dogs
do not respond in
real-life situations.”
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Showing off
Dogs enjoy their owner’s laughter
and excitement, and both you and your
dog will have lots of fun learning the
tricks in this section. These exercises
help to use up your dog’s mental energy
and give him a purpose, resulting in a
more relaxed, contented animal. They
are impressive when shown to friends,
and can be added to a training session to
give variety and to lighten the mood.
Once dogs have learned the tricks
well, they really seem to enjoy
the performance, especially
when in front of an appreciative
audience. This section will further
improve your training skills,
and give you a more versatile
dog that knows many useful cues.
FINE PERFORMANCE
Once dogs are accomplished at a
trick, they will enjoy performing
it, especially if their efforts are
rewarded well at the end.
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It is easy to teach your dog to wave, and this exercise is a good place to
start your trick training. A wave can make a big dog look friendly and less
intimidating to children and it is also a great way to say goodbye to guests.
14
Incentive to paw
Wrapping a treat in your hand, let your dog smell
the treat, and encourage him to paw at your hand
by moving it around at floor level. Reward any slight
movements of his paw immediately, and wait
patiently for him to touch your hand with his paw.
25
Rewarding touch
Once your dog knows he has to touch your hand with his paw
for you to release the treat, begin to move your hand slowly off
the ground over several sessions.
Wave
44
And wave
Practice, raising your
hand even higher and
rewarding “waves”
immediately. In later
sessions, introduce a
hand signal and voice
cue. Train in different
places, with distractions,
and with your dog in
varying positions
in relation to you.
Teaching the wave exercise requires patience.
Your dog will need time to think things through,
so don’t be tempted to rush through the stages.
Keep sessions short and successful and, if
necessary, go back a step in order to end with
something easy. If your dog jumps up to get the
treat, or does something similarly undesirable,
patiently reposition him and try again.
34
Higher still
When you raise the treat higher than your dog can
reach, you will need to be patient to get him to
raise his paw. Reward any slight movement of his
paw at first and ask for more in later sessions.
“Keep sessions short… if
required, go back a step.”
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An easy trick to teach, the spin is a very useful warm-up exercise
before competing in active dog sports (pp.232–3). Most dogs really enjoy
performing the spin and will do it readily when asked by their owners.
16
Follow the lure
Holding a treat just in front of your
dog’s nose, lure her around and
away from you in a circle. Move
slowly so she can follow you easily.
24
Reward halfway
Reward your dog as she passes the
halfway point of the circle, so she
understands it is worth her while
to follow the lure again next time.
Spin
44
Spin!
Practice this routine together over several
training sessions, gradually phasing out the
halfway reward until you only reward a full
spin. Eventually, you will be able to build
your lure into a hand signal (pp.110–11).
Make sure you teach your dog to spin in both directions to prevent
her from becoming dizzy and also to avoid muscle building up on
one side only. Take care with young, active dogs who may spin
obsessively once they fnd out how much fun this activity is.
36
Reward the full circle
Keep luring your dog round until she has
moved full circle and is back in the starting
position, facing you. Reward her well.
GOOD PRACTICE
Over several sessions, try to build in
more spins before rewarding your dog.
If you want to put the action on voice cue
(pp.110–11), choose a different word for
each direction – for example, “spin” and
“twirl” – to avoid confusion.
Clockwise
Once your dog
fully understands
how to spin in one
direction and does
so readily, you
can start to train
him to spin in the
other direction
as well.
Anticlockwise
When training
your dog to spin
the other way,
start from stage
one again, luring
him in the other
direction until
he understands
what to do.
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The high fve is a favorite trick for many dogs and their owners. It is
advisable to teach this in preference to shaking a paw, as some dogs
can fnd it quite threatening to have their paw lifted and held.
16
Hold a treat to the floor
Wrap a treat in your hand and move it
about in front of her, encouraging her to
paw at your hand as she tries to get the
treat. Reward her as soon as she makes
contact and practice over several sessions
27
Open one hand
Hold out your other hand
just above the floor, so that
when your dog lifts her paw,
it lands on your open hand
instead of the hand holding
the treat. Reward her well.
High fve
It is a good idea to teach your dog to wave (pp.160–1)
before attempting the high fve, as the early stages of
training are similar. Once she can wave with ease,
you can build on her skills with this exercise.
36
Raise your hand
Practice this motion,
raising your hand
a little higher each
time. Move the
hand with the treat
to encourage her,
and reward her
well as soon as
she makes contact
with her paw.
GOOD PRACTICE
When your dog successfully performs a
high five and touches your hand with her
paw, take care that you support the paw
lightly rather than trying to hold on to it,
as this may cause her to withdraw it.
Practice the high five in a range of
different places and with a variety of
distractions going on around you. If your
dog forgets what you are asking her to
do in an unfamiliar location or in front of
an audience, gently remind her by going
through the stages above.
Teach your dog to respond to a voice
command to help her distinguish the
high five from the wave. Say “high five”,
wait a moment, then hold up your hand
as before. Always reward her well for
putting her paw against your hand.
Crouching high five
At first, you will need to kneel down or crouch.
As your dog becomes more proficient, you will be
able to teach him to “high five” while you stand.
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High five!
Repeat the exercise over
several sessions, building in
the high five signal with your
hand upright and palm facing
your dog, until she learns to
place her paw against your
raised hand to get her reward.
55
Timely offering
Once your dog readily places
her paw against your hand,
introduce a pause between
contact and reward. Start to
extend this gap so that her
paw is pressed against your
palm for longer periods.
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166-167-Play_dead.indd 166 20/11/08 20:58:51
Play dead is a fun trick to show friends and, when combined with a hand
signal in the shape of a gun and a spoken “bang!”, can look impressive,
especially if your dog will lie motionless with her head down and tail still.
16
Relax
Ask your dog to lie down.
Using a large tasty treat, lure
her head slowly around to the
side. Be patient and let your
dog lick and chew at the treat
until she relaxes and rolls
her hips to one side.
24
Head swivel
Slowly move the treat around,
so that your dog’s head turns
and her nose moves towards
her tail. Allow her to chew
the treat and let her relax until
her weight is resting on one
hip and one front leg.
Play dead
Once your dog has learned the down position
(pp.126–7), it is usually quite easy to teach her to
lie fat on her side and completely still. However, it
takes more time and repetition for her to learn how
to fall fat from a standing position. She may fall
fast or “die” slowly. Reviving her with “medicine”,
in the form of a tasty treat, rewards the behavior
and gives the exercise a positive conclusion.
“Don’t laugh or react
if your dog lifts her
head up. Wait until
she is “dead” again
before rewarding.”
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Play dead
With your dog in the down position, say
“bang!” and give your hand signal while
standing. Then lure her into position and
reward her well. After several sessions,
give the cue and wait for a response—
help her with the lure only if necessary.
GOOD PRACTICE
Don’t laugh or react if your dog lifts
her head off the floor. Wait until she
is “dead” again before rewarding.
Progress to teaching your dog to play
dead from a standing position. Give your
voice cue and hand signal as above, then
wait for the count of two for a response.
If none is forthcoming, use a treat to lure
her into down (don’t say anything else at
this stage), then into a “lie flat” position.
Reward her, then stand up, then reward
her again so she knows that you want
her to lie flat and stay still.
Repeat these stages until your dog learns
what is required of her. As soon as she
plays dead for the first time, reward her
with a treat and praise her well, then end
the session, practicing again later.
37
Praise gently
Slowly move the treat in an arc in front
of your dog until her head is on the floor
and she is lying flat. Feed the treat and
praise her gently. Ask her to “stay” and
feed another treat. Practice over several
sessions until you can lure her into
position and she lies flat while you get up.
Falling down
Once your dog
has learned to
respond to the cue
while lying down,
teach her to play
dead from a
stand. This should
be easy with
regular practice.
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Teaching your dog to jump is a really useful training exercise, making
life easier for you as you will not have to lift her over any obstacles.
Start slowly and build up gradually to develop your dog’s confdence.
16
Excite her
For this exercise, you will need
a jump pole and adjustable
stands. Begin by placing the
jump pole on the ground. With
your dog on a lightweight leash,
tease her with a ball or a toy
until she is excited and wants
to chase after it.
27
Throw the ball
Toss the ball in a low arc over the pole. Ask your dog
to “jump”, pointing to the pole so she learns to follow
your hand signal, and stepping forward to encourage
her. Release the leash as she moves to fetch the toy.
Jump
It is important to protect a young puppy’s growing
joints and limbs, so only teach this exercise to dogs
over 12 months old who are fully developed. Make
sure that your dog is physically ft and has no joint
or health problems before asking her to jump. Hip
and elbow dysplasia are common in pedigree dogs
and often go undetected until later in life. If your
dog is reluctant to jump, ask your vet for advice.
36
Raise the jump and try again
Raise the pole by 2 in (5 cm) and repeat
the first two stages. Over several
sessions, gradually raise the pole higher.
Don’t forget to release the leash as your
dog races after the toy and jumps.
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No running out
If your dog tries to go around or under the jump,
use the leash to prevent her. Go back to where
you started and try again. Ask for no more than
three jumps per session and remember to get
her excited before you throw the toy.
Useful trick
Once your dog has learned how to jump, he
will be able to negotiate real life obstacles,
such as gates and fences.
54
Jump!
Once your dog learns what is required,
encourage her to jump first, then throw the ball
later as a reward. When she no longer tries to
go around the jump, dispense with the leash.
GOOD PRACTICE
As you ask your dog to jump a little bit
higher, make sure that she starts far
enough back to clear the jump.
If your dog falls when jumping, lower
the jump considerably before trying
again. Reward a successful jump at the
lower height before you gradually raise
the pole again to make it harder.
Jumping is very tiring for your dog, and
uses unusual muscles, so keep sessions
short. Encourage her to do a few jumps
and then wait until the next training
session before you ask her to do more.
Jumping is a necessary skill for many
dog sports, particularly agility (pp.234–7).
To build a good foundation for later
speed and accuracy, take things slowly
and ensure success at each height.
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170_171_Take_a_message.indd 170 20/11/08 21:03:45
As its name implies, this exercise involves training your dog to pass a
message between you and another person. It is simple to teach once your
dog has learned to retrieve and give things up (pp.136–9), and is great fun.
Take a message
Teach this exercise indoors over several sessions,
and ask a person your dog is familiar with to assist.
Start by using a short distance between you and the
person who will receive the message. Then build up
longer distances, with the other person in different
rooms in the house. Help your dog if necessary
in the early stages, walking toward the message’s
recipient if your dog seems confused.
16
Fetch games
Begin by getting your dog used to the feel of
paper in his mouth by playing fetch games
(pp.136–9). Expect to get through lots of paper,
but practice until he will retrieve the “message”
from the floor and bring it back to you readily.
24
Give him the message
Once your dog has learned to take hold of the
message and carry it in his mouth, get his
attention and hand him the message to hold.
34
En route
Encourage him in the direction of a friend
nearby, pointing to her and saying “take it!”
enthusiastically. Ask your friend to call your
dog and urge him to move toward her.
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“If your dog drops the
message, encourage
him to pick it up again.
Never get angry with
him or scold him for
dropping the paper.”
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Make it harder
Practice over several sessions until your dog
knows what to do. Then gradually increase the
distance between you and the message recipient,
asking her to hide around the corner and,
eventually, in other parts of the house.
46
“Good job!”
Ask the recipient to exchange the message for a
treat as soon as your dog reaches her, keeping the
treat out of sight until he is very close. She should
then feed the treat and praise him well, so that he
knows he has done the right thing.
GOOD PRACTICE
If your dog drops the “message”,
encourage him to pick it up again,
sliding the paper across the floor if
necessary to make it more exciting for
him to pick up. Once he does so, praise
him continuously while he grasps the
paper in his mouth, making sure that he
knows how clever he is. Never get angry
or scold him for dropping the paper.
A more advanced version of this game is
to teach your dog the names of other
family members or friends. You can then
ask him to take the message to a named
individual. First, teach your dog the
names of different people by practicing
repeatedly until he knows which person
to give the message to when everyone is
sitting in the same room. Once he has
learned everyone’s names, locating and
giving a message to an individual
elsewhere in the house will be easy.
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Hide and seek games are very easy for your dog to play, because
they require a good sense of smell. Once she knows how to play them,
these games are fun and will help to use up her energy.
14
”Fetch!”
Start by playing fun retrieval
games (pp.136–41) with
a new toy in short sessions
over several days, until
it becomes your dog’s
favorite toy and she runs to
fetch it wherever you decide
to throw it.
26
Hide the toy
Ask your dog to sit and wait, then wave the toy in
front of her to get her attention, before hiding it
somewhere nearby where she can find it quite easily.
Find the lost toy
This is a good game to play inside. Once you have taught
your dog to fnd an item hidden somewhere in your home,
you can relax while your dog hunts for it. However, you must
be on hand to help her if she can’t fnd the toy, and don’t tease
her by asking her to search for something that isn’t there.
“Reduce the
help you
give until
she can find
a toy hidden
anywhere.”
GOOD PRACTICE
At first, you will have to help your dog to
find a toy that is hidden in another room.
Go into the room and give the “find it!”
cue, pointing towards the hiding place
to encourage your dog to search the area
that you are indicating. Slowly reduce
the help you offer her over several
sessions, until she can find a toy hidden
anywhere in the room.
Over time, you can progress to hiding a
variety of toys in different areas around
your home. Make the search more
challenging gradually, so that your dog
knows exactly what to do and becomes
an enthusiastic hunter.
“Find it!”
Point your dog in
the right direction
by using a direct
signal. Once he
hunts for the toy
on the cue “find
it!”, you no longer
need to point.
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Praise her
Ask your dog to bring the toy to you and let her
know how clever she is as she does so. When
she gives you the toy, reward her with a treat
and lots of praise before hiding it again, this
time in a different place, for her to find.
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Make it harder
You can gradually build up many different hiding
places for the toy in rooms around your home,
pointing her in the right direction to help her.
37
”Find it!”
Ask your dog to “find it!” , pointing her towards the hiding place to direct her.
Encourage her to keep searching until she has found the hidden toy, and then
be sure to praise her well as soon as she has located it.
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Housework
Dogs thrive on a sense of belonging
and shared activity. As much of our
lives are based in and around our homes,
training our dogs to help us with daily
chores is a good way to make them feel
included. This also creates more free
time, which you can spend with them. This
section shows you how to teach your dog
some simple exercises that will allow him
to help you with the housework—for
example, picking up his own toys.
As you teach the exercises, you
will learn valuable training
skills. You can then build on
these skills to teach your dog to
be involved in other projects and
tasks around the home that will
be useful to you, and fun for him.
WILLING WORKER
Dogs really enjoy it when they
are rewarded well for working. It
will ensure that they are ready and
willing to help you with the chores.
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It is really useful to have some assistance when you have too much to
carry, and your dog is sure to enjoy helping you with this simple household
task. It will strengthen your relationship and make him feel valued.
17
Play a game
Tease your dog with an ordinary
household object, such as an empty
plastic bottle, to get him interested in
playing a game. Keep moving it around
until he wants to grab hold of it.
26
Praise him
Roll the bottle along the floor to encourage
your dog to chase and pick it up. Once he
has, praise him enthusiastically. Over several
sessions, slowly build up to asking him to
walk with you while he holds the bottle.
Carry the groceries
Once your dog knows how to fetch and pick up toys
when asked (pp.136–41), teaching him to carry in
the groceries is relatively easy. When he has
learned this, you can extend it to other jobs in the
home, such as carrying in the laundry. Start off by
making it easy for him to learn to pick up awkward
but manageable objects by playing retrieve games
with a variety of empty packets and containers.
37
Make it harder
Once he can carry empty bottles and
packets, progress to asking him to carry
full ones. Over several sessions, he will
learn what is required and you will be
able to hand him objects to hold rather
than throwing them for him to pick up.
“When he has learned to carry groceries,
teach him to help you with other household
chores, such as carrying in the laundry.”
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Carry the groceries
Progress to asking him to carry an easy item,
such as a lightweight bag, over a short
distance. If he drops it, ask him to “fetch”
and reduce the distance. Praise frequently.
56
”Thank you!”
Ask him to wait while you put down your
bags. Take the item he is carrying from him,
then praise him really well and quickly
find a tasty treat to reward him.
GOOD PRACTICE
If your dog chews the object you give
him, let him play with another empty
packet of a similar texture. Dogs use
chewing as a way of exploring an object,
just as we use our hands to touch things.
Giving your dog more opportunities to
chew an item will eventually stop him
doing so as he becomes familiar with it.
Once your dog fetches and carries items
easily, ask him to help you around the
house, finding and bringing different
things to you. Don’t give him breakable
things to carry, or anything too heavy or
sharp. Make it easy for him to understand
what you want, and praise and reward
him well. Most dogs love working in this
way, and it will help to use up your dog’s
energy and keep him entertained.
Useful hound
You can make your dog feel really useful—and
put your feet up in the evening—by training him
to fetch your newspaper or your slippers.
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178-179_Fetch_the_lead.indd 178 1/12/08 15:20:35
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Teaching your dog to fetch his leash is easy once he has learned to
pick up toys and other items (pp.136–41). It will give him something
fun to do while you get ready to go out for a walk.
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Folded and fastened
Make it easy for your dog to pick up the leash
and carry it in his mouth by tying it in a knot.
Over several sessions, practice throwing it and
ask him to “fetch” until he readily retrieves it.
26
Full length
Once your dog can carry a
folded and tied leash, play
some games with it untied.
Initially, he may find it more
difficult to carry and may
tread on the trailing end, but
he will improve with practice.
Fetch the leash

Fetch!

Rewarding your dog with a walk every time he
responds to your request to fetch his leash will soon
have him racing to get it. After a while, he may even
learn to anticipate your request, fetching it without
being asked to do so whenever he sees you putting
on your coat or preparing to go out. You can begin
teaching him this assignment by playing some
exciting retrieve games with the leash.
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Encourage him
When your dog can carry the leash succesfully,
place it on the ground near its usual hanging or
storage place and ask him to “fetch”. Reward
him well when he brings it to you. Repeat the
exercise over several sessions in this location.
US_178-179_Fetch_the_lead.indd 178 15/12/08 12:33:22
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Thank you!

GOOD PRACTICE
Make sure that you hang your dog’s leash
on something secure, so that it won’t fall
on him when he pulls at it or moves in
any way. This might frighten him and
prevent him pulling at the leash again.
If your dog fetches the leash when you
haven’t asked for it, in anticipation of a
walk, you should take it without praising
or rewarding him and then return it to
where he found it. Repeat until he gives
up bringing it to you. Laughing, scolding,
or giving in and taking him for a walk
when he does this will only result in
him doing it more often and, eventually,
this will become a nuisance. However,
he is trying to tell you something, so take
note that he wanted to go for a walk
when you didn’t ask him, and make an
effort to play more with him or take him
out for walks more often.
You should always try to keep your dog’s
leash in the same place, so that he
knows exactly where it is, and can fetch
it easily when you ask him to.
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Leash position
Loop the leash, with the clip end
close to the ground, over the peg or
handle on which it usually hangs. This
will prevent the clip landing on your
dog’s nose when he pulls it down.
Ask him to “fetch”.
54
Praise him
When your dog brings the leash to
you, make sure that you tell him what
a good boy he is and praise him well.
Reward him with one of his favorite
treats and then take him out for
a walk to celebrate his success.
Muted
Fetching and
holding the leash
is a good skill to
teach if your dog
is likely to bark
with excitement
at the thought
of a walk. It’s
not possible
to bark and
hold the leash!
“Reward your dog with
a walk every time he
fetches his leash—he
will soon race to get it.”
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174-175_Put_the_toys_away.indd 174 9/11/08 15:09:16
Many toys may get scattered over the foor in the course of playing games
with your dog. It makes sense to train her to pick up her own toys and put
them away. She will enjoy doing this if you reward her well for her efforts.
14
”Come!”
Throw a toy for your dog to
fetch and call her to you as
soon as she picks it up. Position
yourself so that the box is
between you and your dog,
thereby making her come
toward the box to get to you.
27
Bring the toy
As she comes closer, hold out
your hand over the box and ask
your dog to deliver the toy into
your hand. Reward her well.
Repeat over several sessions
until she learns to do this easily.
Put the toys away
Placing a toy inside a box is not as natural a
behavior for a dog as taking it out, so this trick
requires patient teaching and plenty of practice.
Teach your dog to retrieve frst (pp.136–41) and
practice until it is easy for her to fetch items that are
lying on the foor. This trick looks impressive and is
really useful, especially when visitors are expected
and you have little time to clean before they arrive.
“The reward on offer
must outweigh the
pleasure of holding
on to the toy.”
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Put the toys away
Ask your dog to “pick up” but do not put
any treats in the box. When she lifts her
head after a fruitless search, reward her
really well with treats and praise.
GOOD PRACTICE
If your dog drops the toy on the way to
the box, withhold the treat and praise,
and ask her to “fetch” again. Do not
get angry or pressure her into doing
it—just ask her nicely. It can take a long
time for some dogs to learn to perform
this trick successfully, so you must be
patient and keep gently reminding your
dog what you want her to do.
If your dog takes the toy out of the box
again, make sure that the reward you
are offering outweighs the pleasure of
holding on to the toy (pp.206–7). Reward
her with tastier treats or a favorite toy.
Repeat the steps above until your dog
understands that she has to drop the toy
into the box to be rewarded. Once she
has learned this, you can gradually
move further away from the box.
36
Find the treat
When she comes to you holding the toy and
is over the box, drop a treat into the box. She
will have to drop the toy into the box in order
to find the treat. Practice this, giving her the
cue “pick up” as you send her for the toy.
Trash collection
Once your dog has learned the principle of
picking items up, ask him to put trash in the can
or dirty laundry in the basket. Reward him well.
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This is a useful exercise for occasions
when you want your dog out of the way
in a safe place, such as when you have
visitors who do not like dogs, or when
you are eating, dealing with a baby, or
tackling tasks that require concentration.
16
Place the treat
Ask your dog to sit, then wait
(pp.128–9), or ask a friend to
hold her. Show your dog that
you have a tasty treat, and
then place it behind her bed,
so that it is within easy reach,
but out of her sight.
26
”Go to bed!”
Send your dog forward to find the treat with the cue
“go to bed”. Try to send her from a direction that allows
her to locate the treat while standing on her bed.
Go to bed
This is easy to teach, but it can be tricky getting your dog
to comply if she prefers to be with you. To teach her to
respond in any circumstances, start slowly, asking her to
go to bed when she would rather not. Make sure that she
responds to your request, and that the reward outweighs the
enjoyment she would get from doing what she prefers to do.
GOOD PRACTICE
Eventually, as your dog understands
what you want when you ask her to “go
to bed”, you can dispense with the treat
behind her bed altogether, and reward
her only for lying down on the bed.
Steadily build up your dog’s compliance
by asking her to go to her bed and stay
there, even when there are more
interesting things going on around her.
“Spend time making
this a pleasant
experience for your
dog with treats and
lots of praise.”
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Enjoyable experience
Praise her well for lying down on her bed.
Spend some time making this a pleasant
experience with treats and fuss. Progress
over several sessions, gradually increasing
the distance between you and the bed.

Good girl!

If your dog refuses to go to bed, gently
insist that she does as you ask, but
make sure you ask in less distracting
circumstances next time, so that you
build up the skill more gradually.
Once your dog is reliably going to her
bed when you ask her to, and staying
there, you should reward her well for
her good behavior. Remember to go
over to her periodically to reward her
again for staying in place.
3
Lie down
As soon as your dog has eaten the treat,
move toward the bed. Say her name to
get her attention, so that she turns around
to face you, then ask her to lie down.
Distract her
To increase the
chances that
she will stay
on her bed, give
her something
interesting to
chew, so that
she has a
good reason
to be there.
Soft option
Make sure that your dog’s bed is comfortable
and not too far from where you will be, so that
she will be less tempted to come looking for you.
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Teaching your dog to shut doors is both useful and impressive. It is more
diffcult to teach than most other tricks, so you need plenty of patience,
but by breaking it down into small stages, you will be successful.
16
Target training
Hold a pen, call your dog, and
reward him when he touches it with
his nose. Once he does this reliably,
add the voice cue “close the door”
just before you present the pen.
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Swap pen for paper
Attach a sticky note to your hand.
Ask your dog to “close the door”
and wait for him to touch it with
his nose. Reward him instantly,
and repeat over several sessions.
Shut the door
Start off by teaching your dog to touch a target by
holding out a pen and rewarding him with a treat as
soon as he touches the end with his nose. Continue
practicing this over several sessions until he will
run to touch the end of the pen wherever it is held.
You can then progress through further training
sessions using a sticky note, attaching it frst to the
palm of your hand before progressing to a door.
37
Touch the paper!
Put the sticky note on a low door,
point, and say “close the door”.
Wait patiently. If he does not
touch it, stick it to your hand and
hold it close to the door. Keep
trying until he touches the door.
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“Close the door!”
Once your dog has learned to
push the door shut with the
paper target attached, start to
train him without it. Begin your
session with the paper, then,
after two successful attempts,
remove it and ask him to “close
the door”. Wait for him to shut
the door, then reward him really
well and end the session.
GOOD PRACTICE
If, during step 3, he does not push the
door firmly, get him excited, then hold
him back and ask him to “close the door”,
moving forward when you release him.
His extra momentum will shut the door.
Reward him with a jackpot (pp.116–7).
Never reward touches or pushes with a
paw instead of the nose. This will result
in scratched doors as your dog tries to
close them with his paws instead.
When practicing with different doors,
always return to step 3 to make it easy
for him to understand what you mean.
“Practice with
different doors
until he will
close any door
and run to you
for a reward.”
Pull the door shut
Play exciting tug
games with a loop
of material until
your dog will readily
pull it, then hang it
on a door that opens
outward and ask
him to “pull”.
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Best behavior
A dog with good manners makes a
popular pet and likeable companion
that you will be happy to take out and
about. Dogs that jump up at people,
snatch food from their hands, will not
settle down, barge past people to get
through doorways first, chase things they
should not, bark excessively, and cannot
be handled easily are really difficult to live
with. Learn how to teach your dog good
manners, so that he does not do
these things, and instead can live
easily and harmoniously with
you. Patiently teaching good
manners at home, and then in all
situations and circumstances, will
result in a well-behaved dog
that is acceptable anywhere.
CHASING DANGER
Inappropriate chases can get a dog
and its owner into trouble. It is
important to prevent this and use
games as an outlet for excess energy.
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Dogs jump up for several reasons—to get closer to us, to greet us, and to
get our attention. It may be appealing when puppies do this, but it can
become an irritating habit in older dogs.
15
Bad habit
Don’t encourage your dog to jump up to
get attention—it can rapidly develop into
a consistent and unpleasant habit.
No jumping
Everyone in the family, and those familiar with
your dog, need to work together to teach him to
greet people appropriately. By adopting the simple
approach shown here every time your dog jumps
up, he will learn that it is not a rewarding action,
and will, eventually, cease to do it. If he is rewarded
with attention for keeping all four feet on the foor
when he meets you, he will learn to do this instead.
26
Cold shoulder
If your dog jumps up, don’t speak, look at
him, or touch him. Turn away, folding your
arms, and ignore him until he stops.
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Greeting friends
Keep him on a leash if visitors arrive, to stop
him from jumping up. They should only greet
your dog when he is calm. If they are willing,
ask them to follow the steps shown here.
36
Reward
As soon as your dog has all four feet back
on the ground, crouch down to his level and
greet and praise him enthusiastically. If he
tries to jump up again when you stand up,
repeat the exercise, turning away and calmly
ignoring him until he does what you want.

Good boy!

GOOD PRACTICE
Once you begin this process, it is very
important that everyone familiar to your
dog follows the same approach every
time he jumps up. Don’t touch him, speak,
or look at him if he does jump. If you
acknowledge this behavior, you will
be randomly rewarding him (pp.116–7),
and the problem will get worse.
Be patient and consistent, as it may take
several weeks before your actions have
a positive effect and your dog stops
jumping up. Progress may be slow
initially—his behavior may even get
worse for a while—but suddenly, you
will see an improvement (pp.118–9).
Always reward your dog when
he keeps all four feet on the floor.
If you have already taught your dog to sit,
asking him to do so before he has a
chance to jump up may encourage
improved behavior, as you are giving him
something to do that is incompatible
with jumping. Get down to his level and
reward his sit by praising him warmly.
Controlled enthusiasm
Puppies like to get close to our faces to greet us.
Get down to your puppy’s level, so that he can
learn to greet you without having to jump up.
“Crouching down
to his level will
enable your dog to
get closer to you.”
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Dogs snatch food if they think there
is a chance they will lose it. Prevent
this behavior by teaching your dog
to wait patiently for his reward.
4Competition
It is possible that
another dog will
snatch the treat,
so dogs learn to be
fast to make sure
they get fed. This
leads to accidents,
however, where
they grab their
owner’s hand as
well as the treat.
6Keep your hand flat
One solution is to offer the food on the flat of the hand. Tuck in
the thumb and keep the hand flat to make it easier for him to
take the food gently without biting. This is a good method to use
if you have young children, as they find this technique easy.
No snatching
This problem usually develops during puppyhood,
when an inexperienced puppy accidentally bites
at his owner’s hand holding out some food. The
owner may then begin to whisk the hand away,
with the food still in it, to avoid being bitten.
The inevitable consequences of this are that the
puppy learns that he has to move fast in order to
get the food being offered and learns to snatch.
GOOD PRACTICE
When teaching your dog not to snatch
(opposite), only say “off” once and
keep your hand really still until your
dog moves away.
As you practice, stay calm and wait
patiently until he takes his nose away
from your hand. Do not say anything—let
him learn the lesson for himself. Reward
him well when he gives up and moves
away from your hand.
If your dog uses his teeth in his early
attempts to get the treat, wear an old
leather glove to protect your hand.
If you have two dogs, train them to sit
and wait separately, then ask them to sit
apart, so you can feed them individually
without either feeling the need to snatch.
Paws off
If your dog paws at the hand that is holding the
treat, raise it higher to stop him doing so, but
not so high that he can’t reach it with his mouth.
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Wait
Keep your hand still and wait until you feel a small gap
open between your dog’s nose and your hand as he draws
back. Then open your hand and feed the treat immediately.
34
Reward patience
Practice this until your dog learns to back away from
your hand to get you to release the treat. Eventually,
he will wait patiently to be fed when you say “off”.
14
Off!
Teach your dog to
calm down and
wait for his food by
hiding a tasty treat
in your closed hand
and holding it out
for him. Say “off”,
keeping your hand
still, and ignore his
attempts to get to
the treat.
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Teaching your dog to settle down when you ask results in a dog with good
manners that is acceptable anywhere. It is also useful when you are busy,
such as when answering the telephone or talking to people in the street.
16
Lie down
Attach a leash to your dog’s collar and ask him to
sit quietly beside you on his bed. Wait until he is
relaxed, then ask him to lie down, luring him down
with a treat if necessary.
Settle

Good boy!

Before you begin training your dog to settle, he must
frst learn the down cue (pp.126–7). Start teaching
him to settle at home, with your dog’s bed positioned
next to you. As your dog gets used to being asked
to settle down beside you, and understands
that he will be rewarded for resting calmly,
you can progress to practicing in less familiar
surroundings—for example, at a friend’s house.
24
Relax
Sit back in a chair and relax, praising him calmly and
stroking him gently while he settles, so that he
knows he has done the right thing. If he becomes
restless and gets up, ask him to lie down again.
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Change location
Try this exercise at a friend’s house, or somewhere else
familiar. Once he is used to settling in a couple of
familiar places, start to vary locations, building in
distractions until he can settle anywhere when asked.
37
Keep him occupied
Give your dog a chew (p.95) to help keep him busy while
you sit near him, perhaps reading a book or watching
television. Start by keeping him settled for a few minutes,
gradually extending these sessions for longer periods.
GOOD PRACTICE
The settle exercise requires your dog to
keep still, so make sure that he has had
plenty of stimulating physical and mental
activity before attempting this exercise,
especially if he is young and lively.
“Settle” is different to “wait” (pp.128–9),
in which your dog remains in one
position. This exercise allows him to
change position, stretch out, and move
around a little as long as he stays close
to you and remains calm and quiet.
Slowly get him used to settling in
different locations with varying
distractions, until he can lie down and
relax anywhere. This allows you to take
him anywhere without fuss.
Out and about
Your dog will find
it more difficult to
settle when there
are distractions
nearby. Be patient
and gently insist
that he complies
with your request.
“This is particularly useful
when you are busy or need to
concentrate on other things.”
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If your dog charges through a door ahead of you, he risks tripping you or
running into the path of traffc or other dangers outside that you are not
aware of. Teaching him to sit and wait while you go out frst is safer.
No pushing
Dogs that learn to wait politely for their owners to
go through doorways and entrances before them
develop self-control and learn to have more respect
for their owners. Apart from being good manners,
this will make life easier for you and will be
appreciated by visitors. The method given here
builds on the sit (pp.122–3) and wait (pp.128–9)
exercises, which need to be taught frst.
17
Temptation to barge
The anticipation of going out
or somewhere new may cause
your dog to push through
doorways ahead of you. If he
is allowed to do this, you will
not be able to check first that
it is safe for him to do so.
26
”Sit”
To teach your dog to wait, move
in front of him to position yourself
between him and the door, and then
ask him to sit. Close the door if
he tries to run out.
34
Wait, then proceed
Slowly open the door. If your dog
moves, close the door quickly and
ask him to sit again. Continue until
you can take a step through the open
door and your dog remains sitting.
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Reward
Once you have passed through
the doorway to the other side,
turn raound and praise your dog.
Reward him really well for
remaining in the sit position.
55
Release
When you are ready,
release your dog
from his sitting
position by asking
him to come
through the open
doorway to join you.
Practice this often
until he waits at
doors automatically.
GOOD PRACTICE
Always make sure that your dog is well
exercised before you attempt to teach
this skill. A tired dog is more likely to
remain sitting than a lively, excited one.
If your dog repeatedly tries to rush
through the door as you step forward,
you can use a leash to restrict his
progress, then reposition him and try
again. Be patient and persistent.
If you have more than one dog, only
work with one at a time until each dog
can do it perfectly whenever you ask.
Then, try with two together, then three,
patiently teaching them until they will all
sit together for you to go through first.
Insisting that your dog calmly waits by
the doorway and allows you to go
through first will help him to realize that
his needs do not always come before
yours, and that you control the territory.
Under control
If you own more
than one dog, it
is important to
keep them under
control at all
times. Teaching
this exercise will
help them to
learn self-control
when they are
in a pack.

Come!

“Reward him
for staying
in the sit
position.”
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Many dogs, especially hounds and herding breeds, enjoy chasing and can
get into trouble by doing it inappropriately. They may collide with cars or
cyclists, or whatever they are chasing may get scared and retaliate.
No chasing
To prevent this happening, a dog’s desire to chase
needs to be channeled into acceptable alternative
outlets. Teaching them to play games and to chase
toys instead of people gives dogs the opportunity to
continue enjoying the thrill of the chase in a safe
way. In addition, unacceptable chases must be
stopped, such as with cars, cyclists, joggers, and cats,
and dogs must be taught a chase recall (pp.154–5).
4Early lessons
Puppies must learn
not to chase children.
Teach your puppy to
play with toys instead,
and keep him on a
leash while children
play around him. Ask
children to stand still
if they are chased.
5Dangerous games
The desire to chase
is strong. As well as
movement, fear of the
noise and the smell of
cars or machinery or
the sudden shock of an
approaching jogger or
cyclist can cause dogs
to want to chase
them away.
7In control
If your dog chases,
keep him on a
leash and put some
distance between
you and whatever is
being chased. If he
is still excited, get
further away until
he relaxes.
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GOOD PRACTICE
Dogs develop their chasing preferences
during puppyhood and adolescence, so
we must make sure that they only chase
toys, rather than inappropriate objects,
during this stage in their lives. Try to play
enough chase games with your dog each
day to use up all his mental and physical
energy. The amount of energy he has
depends on his breed, age, and fitness. If
he really enjoys chase games, teach him
a chase recall (pp.154–5), so you can get
him back if he is running into danger.
Some dogs are aggressive when they
catch whatever they are chasing and
may bite in excitement or frustration to
prevent it moving. Use a leash or muzzle
and seek professional help for your dog.
“Your dog’s desire
to chase needs to
be channeled into
games with toys.”
5Start young
Start as you mean
to go on. A puppy
that does not learn
to chase things
inappropriately
will not do it when
he is an adult.
Prevent him from
behaving in this
way, and teach
him to play games
with toys instead.
4Resisting the urge
If your dog chases things that either excite
or worry him, such as cyclists, desensitize
him by relaxing in a place where he can get
used to them. Keep him on a leash while he
watches them in the distance. Start off a
long way away and gradually get closer.
Born to chase
Sight hounds are bred to chase and their desire
to do so is extremely strong. You must channel
this desire into acceptable games with toys.
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Dogs bark for many reasons, such as to guard property, or because they
are excited, or want to attract your attention. Discovering why your dog
barks and addressing the problem are key to changing his behavior.
No barking
Most dogs need very little
encouragement to bark and, in
this way, they differ greatly from
their wild ancestors, wolves, who
very rarely bark. Some breeds,
particularly the Terriers and
guarding breeds, as well as some
GOOD PRACTICE
Never encourage a young puppy to bark.
Most dogs will bark naturally to alert
their owners against intruders as they
get more confident during adolescence.
Encouragement will cause an over-
reaction, which will become a nuisance.
Teaching your dog to bark is easy (right),
but teaching him to be quiet (far right) is
much more difficult. Only attempt this if
you have already successfully trained
him to perform lots of other exercises.
5Attention seeking
If your dog looks at you when he barks,
he is probably trying to get your attention.
Make sure he has enough good-quality
attention throughout the day and then
ignore him completely if he barks at you.
6On guard
Dogs bark at delivery people because they
think they are doing something suspicious,
such as pushing something through the mail
slot. Teach your dog to run to you for treats
and games just before they arrive.
Be quiet
When your dog
barks, say “quiet”
and give a hand
signal. Wait for
him to stop and
then reward him
immediately with
praise and a treat.
Practice doing
this several times
in the course of a
short session.
smaller breeds bred especially
for the purpose of sounding the
alarm, have a tendency to bark
more than others. Because most
dogs live in houses close to other
people who may be disturbed by
the noise, it is important to teach
dogs not to bark unnecessarily.
Ignoring attention-seeking
barking, calming an excited dog,
and minimizing intruder-alert
barking are key to good relations
with neighbors, as well as for
keeping your own stress levels
low. Interrupt barking whenever
it occurs, and calmly engage your
dog in another activity. Ask him
to come to you as soon as he has
sounded the alarm if there is
someone near the property.
Teach “speak!”
Tease your dog with a toy while he is tied to a
fixed object. Reward any slight noise he makes
immediately with freedom, games, and praise.
Eventually reward continuous barking.
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Overexcitement
Some dogs bark when
they are excited. Refuse
to do anything until your
dog is quiet. This will
calm him down and teach
him that barking does not
achieve anything.
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Teaching your dog to accept handling will make him a better patient if
he is ill or injured. It also builds a trusting bond between you, improving
your relationship and making him feel more at ease when you touch him.
6Lift the ears
Slowly lift your dog’s ear flap to look inside.
If this is too much for him, begin by slowly
touching the ear and rewarding him well,
progressing gradually to moving the ear.
4Inspect the teeth
Get your dog accustomed to lifting his top
lip to look at the teeth. Holding his head,
gently ease the side of the top lip back
in order to expose the back teeth.
Accepting handling
We like to touch and hold our dogs as a sign of our
affection for them, but dogs do not touch each other
unless they are fghting or mating. Accustoming
your dog from an early age to being held, touched,
lifted, and restrained teaches him that you are in
control. It also makes it easier and more pleasant
to carry out basic health checks, examine, groom,
and bathe him, clean his teeth, and clip his nails.
GOOD PRACTICE
If your dog looks anxious, nips at your
fingers, or shows any other sign that
he is unhappy with what you are doing,
go more slowly and touch more gently.
Relax him with gentle massages and
petting before trying again.
If your dog is unafraid but he wriggles
and will not keep still, give him plenty
of exercise before trying again.
Teach your dog to accept restraint by
holding him tightly (although taking care
not to cause him any discomfort) until he
relaxes, then let him go immediately.
6Open the mouth
Prize open the front teeth. Immediately let
go and try for longer next time. Feed a treat
quickly to make this a pleasant experience.
Touch
Humans like to
touch, hold, and
hug, but our dogs
need to get used
to this gradually,
so they learn to
accept and enjoy
it eventually.
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4Touch the paws
Paws are extremely
sensitive, so touch
them gently at first,
working up to gentle
paw squeezes later.
Touch the nails with
clippers and feed your
dog a treat. This will
help get him get used
to having his nails
trimmed in the future.
5Examine the eyes
With one thumb above the eye
and the other positioned below,
gently hold the eyelids apart
so you can look in the eye. Be
calm and patient. If your dog
seems worried, slow down and
hold the head steady first.
6Lift the tail
Practice lifting your dog’s tail
gently. This will enable you
to look underneath and will
also get him accustomed to
being touched in this area.
4Lifting
Lift your dog by placing one hand
under his bottom to support his
weight, then lifting under his chest
with the other hand. Lift him slowly,
so he feels secure, and bring him
carefully in toward your body.
“Humans like to touch, hold, and
hug, but our dogs need to get
used to this gradually, so they
learn to accept and enjoy it.”
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Doggy
dilemmas
Solving training problems
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Solving training
problems
It is easy to get stuck in the middle
of a training session and reach a point
where your dog does not want to work,
or he cannot seem to understand what
you are asking him to do. This section
will give you ideas on what might be going
wrong with your training, and advice on how
to fix these problems. All of the common
reasons for training difficulties
are included here—find out what
you need to know to help you
and your dog progress. It also
offers guidance on the thorny
issue of dog aggression, with
information on where to get
further help if necessary.
OUT OF CONTROL
Dog training is not always easy,
and we sometimes need help and
advice to overcome the difficulties
we are experiencing with our dogs.
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Training using positive methods relies on your dog wanting the reward
that is on offer. Knowing what your dog likes most, and guessing what he
might want at the moment you wish to train him takes skill and practice.
Unrewarding rewards
Dogs make a choice between what they want to do
and what we are asking them to do. The rewards
you give need to match the task you are asking
your dog to do, and also be valuable to him at that
moment in time. If you are struggling to get your
dog to respond, try increasing the value of the
treats or games you are offering (pp.108–9), or
give him something different.
5Too much pressure
A low-value treat, combined with too much
pressure from the owner, can cause a dog to
show no interest in working. Adopt a more
relaxed approach and increase the value of
the reward you are offering (p.108).
5Have fun
Having fun with your dog and
building a good relationship will
allow you to reward him with
praise and approval, with only
occasional treats and games to
keep his responses sharp.
6Top choice
Find out which treats or toys
your dog values most highly, and
use these only for complicated
tasks and difficult exercises,
and for when your dog would
rather be doing something else.
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GOOD PRACTICE
The unexpected is always more exciting
and intriguing than the familiar, so keep
your dog guessing as to what reward he
is going to get, and offer something new
if his performance is deteriorating.
Make sure that your dog understands
your voice cues before you start to
reduce the rewards you give him on
a variable reinforcement schedule
(pp.116–7). Jackpots must be both
rewarding and fun.
You can make a new toy more valuable
by keeping it to yourself and allowing
your dog only brief and limited access for
very good behavior. This will make him
work harder to get the reward.
“Find out which treats
or toys your dog
values most highly.”
5Allow exploration
Lack of interest in food or toys when
outside may be due to excitement or
anxiety. To teach your dog to overcome
the distractions that a new area brings,
allow him to explore a restricted area
until it becomes familiar to him.
4Focus
Once your dog has
had a chance to
explore and relax,
offer him a tasty
treat or a game
with a toy to regain
his focus before
you attempt further
training. Repeated
sessions like this
will teach your dog
to concentrate on
you and training
when outside.
Prize chew
Make a treat
or game more
rewarding by
withholding
it for a while
and offering
him something
else instead.
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If the timing of your rewards is not correct, your dog cannot learn what you
are trying to teach. Rewarding actions immediately will ensure he does that
same action again next time. Rewarding too late leads to training problems.
Bad timing
Rewarding immediately is the only way
you have to let your dog know that he has
done the correct action (pp.112–3), so
make sure you always have rewards
ready. Using a treat bag can help this,
as treats are then close at hand. If your
timing is too late, your dog will not know
if he has done the right thing, and so will
not learn what you want him to do. This
can lead to confusion, frustration, and
lack of interest in training for you both.
6Too little, too late
If owners reward too late, the dog cannot see a reason
for doing the action and quickly gets bored with trying.
This can quickly result in a disinterested dog and a
frustrated owner.
4Getting it right
To ensure you reward at the right time, concentrate on
watching your dog carefully, getting your treat ready
before you begin so that you can reward at the precise
moment he does the required action. Have the treat to
hand and feed immediately. Even if you have made a
mistake and don’t have the food ready, praise your dog
warmly while you sort out the treat. Don’t wait until
he has moved on to thinking about other things.
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“Concentrate on watching
your dog carefully. Have
the treat to hand and
feed immediately.”
5Reward
small steps
In the early stages
of training, reward
your dog for trying.
Reward small
approximations to
the desired goal as
soon as your dog
tries, withholding
the reward next
time until he
gives you more.
6Reward the right action
Be clear about what you are asking so that you can watch
carefully for the action you require. Rewarding incorrect
behavior, such as dropping the toy outside the box instead of
in the box, will result in your dog learning the wrong thing.
Recognize the signs
If your dog walks off during a training session, it
could be that your reward timing is off. Correct
your timing, and you may see an improvement.
GOOD PRACTICE
Symptoms of bad timing are disinterest
or frustration from the dog involved.
If your dog tries to wander away
during training sessions or barks
with frustration, check your timing.
If your timing is out, you may succeed
with easy exercises but may struggle
with tasks that are quite complicated.
If you cannot correct this by yourself,
seek help from an experienced trainer
who can show you how to get the timing
right. Soon both you and your dog will be
looking forward to training again.
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Dogs have less complex brains than humans and are less intelligent.
Although it is tempting to treat them like children, we sometimes need
to remember that they need help to understand what we mean.
Make it easy
To achieve success, you must make it easy for your
dog to comply with your requests. Failure to do so
can lead to confusion and a lack of response. Be
prepared to go back a stage if necessary, and reward
successful behavior so he does it again next time.
6Make yourself clear
This owner has asked the dog to
bring a toy and calls him. The dog
responds immediately to the call,
temporarily forgetting about the
toy. It is easy to think that the dog
is being deliberately naughty.
6Help your dog
This dog needs some help. The owner
has asked for too much too soon and he
cannot work out what is required of him.
It is easy to get frustrated and think the
dog is deliberately being disobedient.
4Go back a stage
Helping the dog out by going back a
stage creates success and builds trust.
Putting a sticky note on the cabinet
door will trigger the right response,
reminding him to shut it (pp.184–5).
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GOOD PRACTICE
Always assume your dog is confused
and does not understand what you want,
rather than being disobedient, ignoring
you on purpose, or just being stubborn.
If your dog will not do as you ask, check
that he is well and wants what you are
offering, and then go back to how you
first trained the task and help him to
understand what it is that you require.
Getting frustrated and angry when your
dog fails to do as you ask is natural but
undesirable. Instead, return to something
he knows well and reward him for doing
it. Then walk away, cool down, and go
back to training when you have thought
the exercise through more carefully.
“Helping your dog out
by gently reminding him
what you want him to
do results in success.”
6Show him the toy
Helping your dog by showing
him what you wanted leads to
success. Make sure you reward
him well when he responds
correctly, so that he remembers
what to do next time you ask
him to bring a toy back to you.
4Reward success
Rewarding only the behavior
that you want, once you have
patiently helped your dog to
understand what you require,
ensures that it is more likely to
happen next time you ask him
to perform the same action.
Ignored?
If your dog is
switching off,
stop the lesson.
Think of ways to
make it easier for
him to work out
what you want
him to do.
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Young dogs and naturally lively breeds need plenty of exercise before
they can concentrate on learning. Once your dog has released his excess
energy, he will fnd it easier to focus on learning new tasks.
Dealing with excess energy
If your dog is boisterous and excitable, he will lack
the ability to concentrate for long. Before a training
session, it is a good idea to channel excess energy
into a walk, a run, or vigorous play. The amount of
time you need to spend exercising before training
will depend on age and breed. Take care not to
overexert your dog—you don’t want him to be so
tired that he’s unwilling to participate in training.
5Tire him out
Before training exercises that are
relatively sedentary and require your dog
to be calm and peaceful—for example
“settle” (pp.192–3)—make sure that he
has had plenty of free running and games
with toys to use up his excess energy.
7Running free
Free running is essential for lively and
energetic dogs. Teach your dog to come
back when called (pp.124–5), so that he
can be allowed off the leash in safe areas.
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GOOD PRACTICE
If your dog is easily distracted, and
excitable and active—jumping up or
nipping at your hands or toys, for
example—you need to get rid of some of
his energy before training him. Physical
exercise from free running and games
will tire him enough to concentrate.
“Your dog’s energy
levels will depend
on age and breed.”
7Losing interest
Puppies have shorter attention spans, so
lessons should be kept short. Don’t expect
your puppy to stay still for long, as his
desire to move around is strong.
6Mind games
Playing interesting games with toys is
an excellent way to use up your dog’s
mental energy, as well as tiring him out
physically. A young, lively dog will be
more willing to work after play.
5New tricks
Older dogs can concentrate for longer
and can go straight into lessons
without the need for lots of running
and energetic games beforehand.
Stay in control
Freedom to run and play off the leash is essential
for all dogs, but they must be under your control
at all times and come back reliably when called.
Increase the amount of exercise your
dog gets on every walk by playing games
with him. Take toys on walks with you
rather than throwing sticks for him to
chase, which can be dangerous.
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Many dogs are well trained and behave perfectly at home, but seem naughty
and disobedient elsewhere. This is a fault of the training, not the dog, and
you should be aware that you need to train in all sorts of different situations.
Only behaves at home
Lack of familiarity with your cues can result in your
dog failing to respond to your requests when you
are away from home. Unfamiliar situations also
bring distractions that entice your dog away from
what you are asking him to do. Training all
exercises from the beginning in many different
places, using high-value treats, and with many
repetitions, is the key to success.
7Selective
deafness
Running off on
walks is common.
Such dogs often
come when called
immediately at
home but have
not been trained
to come back
when distractions
are present.
5Unsettled
If your dog lies
down and relaxes
at home when you
have visitors but
will not do so at
a friend’s house,
he needs further
training. Make
appointments to
visit your friends,
so you can practice.
This will get him
used to relaxing in
other environments.
“Dogs who do not
respond to cues
away from home are
not ‘naughty’; they
are distracted.”
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GOOD PRACTICE
Dogs who do not respond to cues away
from home are not “naughty”; they are just
distracted or do not understand. In this
case, there has been insufficient training
in other locations (pp.114–5), and you
need to train these exercises again in a
wide range of conditions and places until
your dog behaves well in all situations.
If your dog is anxious when he is away
from home, it will naturally take him
longer to respond to your requests,
because he will be busy watching out
for things that may seem threatening
to him. Be kind and patient and try to
help him get over his anxieties before
asking him to do things for you (pp.156–
7). In time, he should feel relaxed enough
to respond.
“Be kind and patient.
Train the exercises
again in a wide
range of places.”
5Practice on a line
Patient teaching, using a long line to
keep control, is required until your
dog responds every time. Make sure
you have high-value treats and
practice until your dog is perfect.
6Confused
Many dogs will not perform a well-learned trick in front of an
audience. A different location and the presence of other people
are enough to change the associations to such an extent that
he will not know what you are asking.
6Back to basics
If your dog cannot work out what to do, return to his basic training
and make it easy for him to understand what you want. You will find
that he soon remembers what to do, and eventually he will be able
to respond correctly in many different environments.
New location
Training your
dog in different
environments is
key to helping him
feel relaxed and
confident enough
to perform in
any situation.
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Bad dog?
Solving training problems becomes easier
if you look at the world from your dog’s
viewpoint to see what he finds rewarding.
Arrange situations so that he is rewarded
for doing what you want him to do instead.
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The main reason why dogs become aggressive is that they are afraid.
Aggression may be the only way a dog knows to get the threat to move
away. If a dog feels he is in extreme danger, he may even resort to biting.
Fear-based aggression
Aggression toward people is usually reserved
for suspicious strangers, but a dog may become
aggressive toward his owner if he is being punished
and if he is very frightened of the person. Most
aggression toward other dogs is also fear-based.
Dogs will usually show signs that they are scared
5Learning to fight
Uncontrolled rough play can force the
underdog to become aggressive in order to
make the other dog stop. If successful, this
behavior is quickly learned and will be used
in another similar situation.
4”Go away!”
Owners can find it
difficult to believe that
their dog’s aggression
has its origins in fear,
as a dog does not look
afraid when lunging or
barking. However, it
may have displayed
fearful body language
earlier and been
ignored, forcing the
dog to take this
drastic action.
7Cornered
This dog is tied up, and he has no choice but
to use aggression to confront the danger
he faces. Most dogs do not want to bite,
and will put up a good warning display to
try to get the threat to back off.
frst, but if this fails to protect them from the threat,
and they have enough confdence, they will use
aggression to keep themselves safe. Aggression
usually escalates from growling to snapping to
biting, but in some situations a dog may bite without
giving any warning if he feels suffciently scared.
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GOOD PRACTICE
Keeping a good distance from things that
you know scare your dog will minimize
the chances of him becoming stressed.
Move away as soon as you see the first
signs of distress or fear (pp.74–5).
Never force a shy dog forward to
“confront his fear”. Appreciate that he is
afraid, and try to help him to find a way to
overcome his fears without forcing him.
Fear-based aggression is a serious
issue, and you will need the help of an
experienced pet behaviorist to help
you and your dog overcome the problem.
See p.254 for details of the relevant
groups that can help you, or ask your
veterinarian to refer you. The pet
behaviorist will work out a treatment
plan for you to follow that will involve
desensitization to the fear stimulus and
counter-conditioning to replace bad
feelings with good ones.
“In some situations
a dog may bite
without giving any
warning if he feels
scared enough.”
6Muzzles
Control measures are vital for
aggressive dogs. Muzzles can
help to keep people and other
animals safe, but a muzzled dog
can still harm. Good behavioral
therapy is also needed.
Shyness
Shy dogs are
potential
fear-biters
if they find
themselves
in the wrong
situation. They
need gentle help
to overcome
their concerns.
5Preventing aggression
Socialize young puppies with
everything they will encounter
as adults (pp.92–3). Failure to
do so will result in a dog that is
scared and more likely to bite.
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As well as fear, there are many other reasons why a dog may decide to
fght or bite. Owners need to be aware of potential problems, and take
action to prevent their dogs from feeling that aggression is the only option.
Other causes of aggression
Dogs have no words to tell us when they are upset
or to ask us to help them. Most dogs live peacefully
with us and with each other, but they occasionally
resort to aggression to get their own way or to make
a point. Finding out why they feel like this is the key
“Dogs have no words to tell
us when they are upset or to
ask us to help them.”
5”Mine!”
Guarding food is a natural
behavior for dogs, whose
ancestors needed to do so in
order to prevent starvation.
Aggression from us will make
the problem worse. They need
to be gently persuaded that we
are no threat to their food.
7”Watch it!”
If your dog shows aggression
toward other dogs, try to
reduce opportunities for conflict.
Do not let him off-leash, keep
your distance from other dogs,
and get him focused on you.
Seek professional help (p.254)
for a long-term solution.
to solving the problem. Feeling protective towards
food, fghting with other dogs for a place in the
household hierarchy, or biting to avoid pain—such
as the pain of a tail being trodden on—are just some
of the reasons why dogs may be aggressive.
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7”Leave it!”
Fighting between two dogs
that live in the same home
is common, particularly when
both animals are entire.
Reinforcement of an existing
hierarchy by the owners
and neutering (pp.88–9) are
possible solutions. A pet
behaviorist can give you an
independent assessment and
a treatment plan (p.254).
Volatile
Terriers were bred
to be courageous
and feisty, so it is
no surprise that
many are quick to
resort to aggression.
Consequently,
terriers need good
socialization. They
should be removed
quickly from high-
arousal situations.
4”Ouch!”
Sensitive dogs may find
grooming painful and
unpleasant, and use
aggression to let their
owners know this. Be
gentle, so that your dog
learns to trust that you
won’t hurt him. Brush
slowly, taking care not to
pull, and keep grooming
sessions short.
GOOD PRACTICE
Whether a dog is feisty or likely to bite
is determined, to a great extent, by his
breed. Some breeds of dog can cope
with many adverse circumstances
before they react, whereas others are
more easily provoked. How comfortable
the dog feels physically can also have an
effect, just as it can for us, and factors
such as being too hot, too hungry, or too
tired, can lower thresholds for aggression.
Many owners become aggressive in
response to their dog’s aggression. This
only serves to escalate the aggression and
ruin the relationship between dog and
owner. Getting advice from an experienced
pet behaviorist (p.254) will help you to find
a solution for both of you.
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Q When I ask my dog to sit
at a distance, he walks toward
me and sits when he reaches me.
How can I teach him to sit in the
right place each time?
A All previous rewards have been
for putting his bottom on the ground
when right next to you, so when you
ask him to sit, he will try to do this
again—which means he has to get
to you frst. Teach him that he will
get his reward for sitting wherever
he is (pp.152–3) by preventing him
from moving toward you until he
gets the idea. Don’t get angry with
him for walking toward you, or he
will begin to creep forward slowly.
Q My dog walks well on the
leash when coming home from
the park, but pulls all the way
there. How can I prevent this?
A He pulls on the leash to get to
the park faster, so teach him that,
instead, pulling results in slower
progress—because you stop and
make him wait. He needs to learn
that if he keeps the leash loose, you
will walk more quickly. Start this
exercise (pp.134–5) from the
moment you attach the leash to his
collar so that you are training even
as you go out of the door and down
the path. It may take a long time to
reach the park at frst, but you will
get faster with fewer stops each
time you practice. Tire him out
with some energetic games in the
yard frst to reduce his incentive to
race to the park for exercise.
Q I’m trying to teach my dog to
jump while carrying a toy in his
mouth, but he keeps dropping it.
What should I do?
A It is perfectly normal for dogs
to forget to do one thing while
concentrating on another. Teach
jumping (pp.168–9) and retrieving
(pp.136–41) separately for a while
until your dog can do each task
easily and without concentrating.
Then ask him to do both at the
same time. If he drops the toy
before jumping, don’t reward him
but, instead, immediately take
him back to the toy, ask him to
“fetch” it again, and then ask him
to jump again (keep the jump very
low at frst). You will have to keep
repeating this gently until he
gets it right, then praise him
enthusiastically when he does.
Troubleshooting
Despite both good intentions and patient training sessions, sometimes
dogs do not perform the desired action perfectly. Here are some examples
of common training problems, with advice on how to solve them.
“Reward your dog
well for performing
the right action.”
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Q My dog comes back to me
with his toy but he won’t give
it up. What can I do?
A Some dogs enjoy the possession
of a toy just as much, or more, than
the chase. Giving it up is hard for
them because you are taking away
something they enjoy (similar to
someone taking money from you
and not giving it back). Encourage
your dog to give the toy to you by
offering something he would rather
have, such as food or a favorite toy.
He may fnd it easier to drop the
toy rather than allow you to take it
from him. Teach him to trust that
you will give it back once you have
it by returning it to him or throwing
it again for him to chase.
Q When I ask my dog to play
dead (pp.166–7), he rolls onto
his back and wags his tail.
How can I teach him to do
what I want?
A This is funny, so why not put
it on cue so you can get him to do
it again next time (pp.110–11)?
When you want to teach the play
dead trick, use a food lure to
position your dog carefully, then
give your reward in the form of
social approval and laughter
(pp.108–9), because this reaction
has been so successful in the past.
Reward the “dead” position quickly
at frst, and then gradually build
up the time he must hold it before
rewarding. If you leave it too long
and he rolls onto his back and
wags his tail, try not to laugh, but
patiently lure him into the correct
position again and reward well.
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Q I’ve tried to get my English
Setter to play but she is not
interested. What can I do?
A Play has its origins in the
rehearsal of hunting behavior.
Anything you can do with a toy
that simulates a small, fast-moving
creature will stimulate your dog to
give chase. Tie a small piece of
sheepskin onto a line and then
weave it in and out of some long
grass to tempt your dog to follow
it and pounce. Keep moving it
erratically, sometimes showing
it to him and then, at other times,
hiding it. Always be sure to stop
the game before your dog gets
bored, and then try again a little
later. You will fnd that short, fun
play sessions like this will build
his interest and, gradually, can be
turned into games with toys.
Q My dog likes people so much
he runs to them before coming
back to me when I call. How can
I teach him to come back?
A The downside of having a
well-socialized dog is that they
like people so much that it is
sometimes very diffcult to stop
them greeting anyone and
everyone they encounter when out
on a walk. To train your dog to
check in with you frst (pp.150–1),
use a long line, but take care not to
get tangled in it or trip anyone else
up. Use this to reel your dog back
to you gently whenever he sees
someone he wants to greet. Always
reward him really well for coming
back, even if you had to make it
happen, and then allow him to
greet the person in a controlled
way if you think it is appropriate.
Troubleshooting
“Allow him to greet
the person in a
controlled way.”
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Q When I ask my dog to fetch
the leash, he will bring anything
he can fnd before eventually
bringing his leash. How can I
teach him to respond correctly
to me frst time?
A Take these things from him
but do not give him any reward.
When he does bring you the leash,
praise him really well. In this
way, he will soon learn that
there is no reward for picking up
other things. To make it easier,
go back to training him with only
the leash in view (pp.178–9) until
he understands the word for this
action, and then add another
item and help him to make the
right decision.
Q My dog won’t “go to bed”
when visitors come. How can
I teach him to do this?
A The rewards you are offering
your dog for going to his bed do not
outweigh the rewards he gains by
being sociable with visitors.
Therefore you must either step up
the rewards he receives for being
on his bed—perhaps by giving him
a tasty chew—or accept that he
wants to be sociable and train him
to behave politely with visitors
instead. You could also try waiting
until the excitement of having
visitors has died down before
asking your dog to go to his bed, to
increase the likelihood of a positive
response from him. Alternatively,
gently insist that he does as you
ask, using a house line to make
sure that it happens (pp.118–9).
“Give him a tasty
chew… or train him
to behave politely.”
Q I like to go for a walk with
my friend and her dog but my
dog pulls on the leash so much
that it is not enjoyable. How can
I stop him doing this?
A Train your dog to walk well
on a loose leash in all situations
(pp.132-5). When he is reliable,
enlist your friend’s help and bring
your dogs together for training.
Ask her to walk around you in a
big circle while you train your dog
to walk beside you. Practice this
until he walks calmly at your side.
Then walk in parallel with the
other dog and practice again, with
your friend walking very slowly, so
she does not get too far ahead.
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6
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Out and
about
Sports and fun
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Sports and fun
Dog sports provide excitement and
fun for both dog and owner. There are
many to choose from, and finding one that
suits you both will result in many hours of
shared pleasure. Use the exercises in
the preceding chapters to train your dog
to understand and respond to numerous
cues, which will lay the foundations for
taking part. Dog sports provide a framework
for further training, help you to learn new
skills, and make an enjoyable
hobby in the process. The wide
variety of canine sports
available are described here,
along with advice on how to
get involved, and how you
and your dog can get fit for
the activity you have chosen.
WATER RETRIEVES
Dogs love to swim once they
know how to do so, and it is
a good way for them to get
fit without risking injury.
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Getting involved
Sporting activities involving dogs are fun. There are many to choose from,
and your dog will love the excitement and exercise. Each sport will give
you a different perspective on training, and increase your skills.
who have a similar interest and,
when you reach competition stage,
will take you to many different
parts of the country that you
haven’t visited before. If you use
only positive training
methods and make
sure your training
sessions are always
fun for your dog, he
will love taking part,
too. Participating in
4Agility
Both owners and dogs need
to be fit and supple to make
turns at high speed on agility
courses. The jumps are
lowered for smaller dogs to
make the competition fair.
a dog sport will provide him with
exercise and a chance to use his
mental energy. He will get ftter and
smarter, and the bond between you
will get stronger. There is nothing
like working in partnership with
your dog to achieve goals, especially
when you win your class.
Once you have completed the basic
training given in previous chapters,
you and your dog will be ready to
start training for one of the many
dog sports available. Dog sports
give you aims and
goals to train for, and
really improve your
training ability and
knowledge. They
enable you to
make new friends
6Star performer
Sociable dogs enjoy the attention, activity,
and performance of dog sports, and revel in
the atmosphere of shows and competitions.
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“Your dog will get fitter and smarter,
and the bond between you will
get stronger.”
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5Gundog trails
Local clubs often hold
competitions to test
the working ability of
gundogs. These events
are informal and
organizers sometimes
allow other breeds to
participate.
7Cani-cross
Energetic owners
can take part in sports
that require as much
effort from them as
from their dog. Dogs
and owners need to
get fit gradually.
Which sport?
Decide which sport seems most
appealing to you. Pages 234–45 will
give you an outline of the most
popular ones, but there are others
that are less common. What you
decide to get involved in usually
depends on what is available in your
area. Be prepared to travel to learn
the skills required, and particularly
to take part in competitions held
around the country. To fnd out more
about these sports, trawl the internet,
contact the American Kennel Club
(AKC, see p.254), and buy magazines
dedicated to dogs. Most competitions
are registered with the AKC, so get
in touch to fnd out where to go and
watch. Talk to competitors after they
have competed to learn more.
To know what is available in your
area, watch out for advertisements
for shows and courses in local vets’
offces, pet shops, or food-supply
stores. Ask local dog-care
professionals such as veterinary
staff, groomers, or dog-walkers
about the various clubs in your area.
The AKC may have a list of the
larger clubs, but it won’t be
comprehensive.
If there are no clubs in your area
for your chosen sport, attend a
beginner’s course. These are often
advertised on websites. The standard
of teaching will vary, so it is a good
idea to ask at shows for names of
teachers who will put you on the
right path from the outset.
4Flyball
Pressing a pedal to release a ball is an essential
flyball skill. All breeds can take part, although
fast, active dogs are usually the winners.
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Practice is vital
Practice is the secret to success in
dog sports. During competitions,
handlers get nervous; dogs pick
up on those emotions and their
performance suffers. The only
way to overcome this is to make
responses to cues so automatic
that nothing affects them. This is
done by repeated practice until
responses are perfect. Training
at home is essential for this and
finding a place to practice and any
necessary equipment is important
if you want to be placed. Training
sessions need to be frequent,
because the total number of hours
you put in will make the difference
between failure and success.
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Get ft for sport
Dog sports require dogs and owners to be ft and ready for the physical
challenges ahead. Getting into shape takes time and effort, and needs to
be done slowly to allow bodies time to adapt.
Different sports require different
physical abilities, and you will
need to check carefully what is
necessary with experts in your
chosen sport. They will also be
able to give you some valuable
tips on how to achieve this level
of ftness and help you plan a
realistic schedule.
Before any exercise schedule is
started, your dog needs to be the
correct weight (pp.78–9). If your
dog is overweight, reduce his
weight by cutting down the amount
of food you give him and increasing
his exercise. It is really important
to reduce weight gradually, because
sudden changes can be damaging
and distressing to your dog. Check
with your veterinarian before
starting a weight loss plan.
Preparation
All dog sports are active and
energetic, and will require your
dog to be healthy and physically
ft. Unless you already have a
very active lifestyle, it will be
necessary to build up your dog’s
ftness, strength, and stamina
gradually so that he can cope with
the rigors of his new sport without
injuring himself.
74Slimming down
Overweight pets (right) struggle to run, jump, and
play, and tire easily. They need to be slimmed down
gradually by reducing food intake and increasing
exercise until they are the correct weight (below).
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6Jogging
Jogging with your dog is
good exercise and improves
stamina. You are putting in as
much effort as your dog, so it
is easy to know when to stop.
64Play exercise
Playing with toys is an easy
way to get your dog fit. Teach
retrieve so your dog brings the
ball back to you, but do not run
him until he is exhausted.
In addition, a ft
dog needs a ft
handler, so don’t
neglect your own
ftness program.
Remember that both
of you need to warm
up gradually before undertaking
any strenuous physical activity.
Building strength
New sporting activities will use
different muscle groups than you
and your dog have used previously.
It will take time for these muscles
to develop suffciently to allow both
of you to do the sport easily. Asking
your dog to jump repeatedly, or to
fetch a Frisbee over and over when
he is not used to it will make him
stiff and sore. For this reason, curb
your enthusiasm and remember
that it is your dog
who is putting in all
the effort! Try to
plan your sessions
in advance so that
you set a limit
on how many
repetitions of a particular action
you will do each day.
Increasing stamina
Some sports require your dog to
have lots of stamina and to keep
going for hours—sometimes
days—before resting. Many breeds
are capable of this, but all need time
to build up their stamina gradually
before performing at a high level.
Because your dog cannot tell you
when he has had enough, and most
dogs will not want to stop while
their owner is still ready for more,
it is important to plan a steady,
stamina-building program, with the
help of more experienced people in
the sport and your veterinarian.
Gradually increasing stamina takes
time, but will save injuries and
breakdowns through ill health
later by slowly strengthening
muscles and tendons.
4Fit for life
Dog sports keep both dogs and handlers supple,
strong, healthy, and fit. Building up gradually to
this point will help prevent injuries.
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“New sporting activities will use
different muscle groups than you
and your dog have used previously.”
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Loved by dogs and owners alike,
canine agility is a sport of skill,
action, and fun. Dogs learn to
negotiate different obstacles, and
once they have learned how to
tackle each piece of equipment,
they begin to run courses against
the clock. In competitions, dogs
negotiate courses of varying
degrees of diffculty, and the fastest
and most accurate in each class
wins. Most elements of agility can
be practiced at home with the
Sometimes referred to as “show jumping for dogs”, canine agility is a sport
that involves skill and speed, requiring dogs to tackle a wide variety of
obstacles. Increasingly popular, it is great fun for you and your dog.
minimum of equipment. However,
joining a club is essential to enable
you to grasp the intricacies of each
obstacle, and to give you a chance
to learn on equipment that you are
unlikely to have at home, such as
the dog walk and A-frame.
A good training class and club
will also encourage you and help
you to fnd out all the essential
Agility
information needed to compete.
It is important that dogs are
physically mature before they
begin training. Growing bones and
joints can be damaged by jumping
at an early age, so puppies should
not be encouraged to jump until
they are 12 months old. Dogs are
not allowed to compete in agility
until they are 18 months of age.
7Learning jumps
Jumping can be taught and practiced at home.
Smaller jumps are set up for “mini dogs” to make
it fair when they compete against bigger dogs.
6Learning tunnels
Tunnels may need to be shortened at first
to encourage dogs to go through, but, like
this West Highland Terrier, they soon gain
confidence if the training is taken slowly.
“Dogs learn to negotiate different obstacles.
Once they learn each piece of equipment,
they run courses against the clock.”
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The hoop
The hoop is suspended on
a frame. Dogs need to
learn to judge the height
accurately so they can
sail through.
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4Tunnels
Tunnels can be
straight or bent,
rigid or made of
canvas. Once dogs
have mastered
them, they travel
through them at
such a rate that
the tunnel needs to
be pegged down
to keep it stable.
5Looking ahead
Both dog and handler
must be thinking about
the next obstacle as they
negotiate the one they are
doing. A well-trained dog
will run ahead of his
handler, taking direction
as he does so.
7Weaves
Dogs must enter from the
right and weave in and out
until the end without
missing any poles. This is
easy when done slowly,
but is more difficult once
they build up speed.
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6Seesaw
The seesaw is
pivoted and dogs
learn to run up
and tip the balance
using their weight.
They have to touch
the yellow contact
points at both ends
with their feet, so
they need to be
accurate as well
as fast.
5Jumps
Accuracy during
jumping is required
for competitions,
and points are
lost if jumps are
knocked down.
The course has
many twists and
turns, and it is easy
to knock jumps
down by cutting
corners too close.
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7Essential
routines
Routines are taught
piece by piece, and
practiced until they
are perfect. Each part
must be performed
with speed and
accuracy. Only then
are they put together
into sequences and,
finally, set to music.
4Perfect
Harmony
This dog and its
owner are in time, in
harmony, having fun,
and on show. This
image epitomizes the
sport of freestyle—
you can almost hear
the music. As with
all performances,
many hours of
rehearsal are the
key to success.
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Heelwork to music was developed
in the early 1990s in the UK to
show the public how interesting
heelwork can be, and it spread
rapidly around the world. The sport
gradually developed, and freestyle
was created out of a desire to
demonstrate other manoeuvres, in
which the dog moves out of the
heelwork position—for example, to
move away from the handler, to
jump, twist, and walk on two legs.
Freestyle is more exciting to watch
than heelwork, and is now the
more popular choice of competition.
Competitors are given four
minutes to demonstrate their
routines to the music of their choice.
They are judged on program
content (a greater variety of moves
gains more points), on accuracy and
execution of movement, and on
musical interpretation.
Freestyle and heelwork to music, otherwise known as dancing with dogs, is
tremendously popular. It combines rehearsed movements choreographed to
music to present a polished performance—great fun for dogs and owners.
Many training clubs now offer
courses for beginners and the
sport’s popularity makes it fairly
easy to fnd a course to help you get
started. All training is by reward
and encouragement, as it is nearly
impossible to make dogs do some of
the moves if they don’t want to. For
this reason, both dogs and owners
enjoy the training, and experienced
dogs get very excited when they
hear the music for their session.
Freestyle is open to any breed of
dog and any age of handler. It suits
dogs who enjoy the repetition and
level of activity needed for the many
rehearsals required, and suits
Dancing with dogs
4Anything goes
Freestyle allows props, such as jump ropes,
canes, hoops, and hats, to be used to help
display more elaborate routines. A wide variety
of maneuvers makes the performance more
interesting, and will earn more points.
handlers with a sense of rhythm.
Both dog and handler need to be
physically ft and supple for this
sport. The movements are easy to
teach, but a basic level of obedience
is required before you begin; it is an
advantage to have a good working
partnership already established.
Working through the exercises in
this book (pp.122–85) provides the
perfect foundation for this training.
“Dogs as well as owners enjoy the training,
and experienced dogs get very excited
when they hear the music for their session.”
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Flyball is a relatively new sport
that originated in California in the
1960s. Due to its popularity, it has
spread rapidly around the world.
The fyball box is a machine that
fres a tennis ball into the air when
a dog presses the pedal. The dog
has to run to the box via a series of
four hurdles, jumping these along
the way, then press the pedal of
the box, which releases the ball.
Flyball is fun, furiously energetic, and intensely exciting. Teams of dogs race
each other, jumping small hurdles to reach a fyball box that delivers a ball
they must catch before jumping the hurdles again to return to their handlers.
The dog has to catch the ball and
then carry it back over the hurdles
to the handler.
Once the frst dog is back, the
second dog is released, and so on,
until all four dogs in the team have
run. If a dog faults—for example, by
running outside the jumps, or
failing to return the ball—it must
run again until it gets it right. The
team cannot fnish until all dogs
Flyball
have run correctly, and the
frst team with all dogs back
successfully is the winner.
Competitions are run as a series
of heats, with the winners of early
heats running against other
winners, until eventually there
are two teams left for the fnal.
Flyball is a great spectator sport,
as well as being fun for competing
dogs and owners. Any active dog
can take part and the training is
relatively easy. The most diffcult
part of training is trying to stop
dogs taking the quickest route,
which is down the side of the jumps
rather than over them.
This sport suits sociable owners
who enjoy the camaraderie of being
part of a team, and is great for
active dogs who enjoy retrieving.
6Jumping the hurdles
All jumps are painted white and many are
padded in case a dog accidently makes contact
with them. During training, “wings” are used
to prevent the dogs from going around the
hurdles instead of over them.
4The flyball box
There are many different varieties of flyball
boxes. Some launch the ball into the air when
the dog presses a pedal, while others allow
dogs to run up a padded board and pick up
the ball as they turn around.
“Flyball is a great
spectator sport
as well as being
fun for competing
dogs and owners.”
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Flyball fun
Dogs enjoy the speed, excitement,
and activity of their run. The most
successful dogs are fast and accurate,
but spectators love the moment when
dogs miss out jumps or drop the ball.
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Obedience
Rules and exercises vary between
countries, but all have easier levels
for beginners—gradually getting
more diffcult as dog and handler
progress to the higher levels.
Obedience exercises include
heelwork on- and off-leash, recall,
stays, and retrieve. Higher classes
may require drop on recall, jumping,
a send-away, distance control, and
a scent-discrimination exercise.
Obedience clubs are easily found
and will help beginners to get
started. Be sure to fnd ones that
use positive training methods
where dogs and owners are having
Obedience and Working Trials are two serious sports. Both have entry
via lower levels that are easier for dog and handler. These sports are for
serious trainers who enjoy the rewards a true working partnership brings.
fun and learning easily. This sport
is very competitive and dogs will
need to be prepared to a high level.
In obedience competitions,
movements must be precise and
accurate to earn points. Points are
won or lost on the movement of a
paw, so this sport suits people who
pay attention to detail and accuracy.
Working Trials
Working trials consist of exercises
similar to those used to train police
dogs, although “man work” is only
taught at the highest levels. Dogs
and handlers progress through fve
stakes, qualifying at both open and
Obedience and Working Trials
championship shows before moving
on to the next stage. Exercises are
divided into three sections:
O Nose work involves following a
track about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) long.
and recovering two objects laid on
it. The other component of nose
work is to search a marked area,
recovering any articles in it
that carry human scent.
O Agility requires the dog to clear
a 3 ft (1 m) hurdle, a 6 ft (1.8 m)
scale, and a 9 ft (2.7 m) long jump.
O The control round involves
heelwork, send-away, retrieving,
stays, steadiness to gunshot, and
speak on command.
4Retrieve
The dumbbell retrieve is common
in both competitions. In obedience,
retrieve, delivery, present, and
finish must be precise. Crooked
sits or mouthing will lose points.
6Obedience heelwork
Heelwork for competitions needs
to be close and precise. Points
are deducted if any gap appears
between a dog and its handler.
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4Long jump
It may look like a long way, but most dogs clear
the long jump easily. Although it consists of
separate units, the jump is designed to look
solid from the dog’s perspective before take-off.
6Tracking
The dog follows a track of scents
produced by crushed vegetation,
disturbed earth, skin cells, and clothing
particles left by the track-layer.
Track conditions such as wind,
rain, dryness, and ground temperature
affect the dog’s performance.
5The scale
A dog has to wait until told to go, then
must scale the jump, land on the other
side, and wait until recalled by his
owner. Dogs can be injured by
repeated landings from such a
height unless they are very fit.
“Working trials
consist of exercises
similar to those
used to train
police dogs.”
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Gundog feld trials and working
tests are usually held in the
summer months and use only
canvas dummies instead of real
game. For the rest of the year,
gundogs are needed on live
shoots and for hunting.
If you fnd the idea of shooting
and dispatching game distasteful,
then feld trials are preferable to
real gundog work, where birds
or animals will be shot around you.
Gundog work, feld trial competitions, and working tests remain the
preserve of gundog breeds—other types of dogs are not allowed. Gundogs
are among the few breeds that are still used for their original purpose.
Field trials are run predominantly
to check on a dog’s ability to do the
real work of a gundog, and so you
will come into contact with people
who take pleasure in hunting.
Field trials and tests are designed
to resemble, as much as possible,
a day’s shooting in the feld, and
all aspects of the dog’s capabilities
will be tested. The gundog breeds
can be divided into retrievers,
spaniels, pointers and setters, and
Gundog work
“hunt, point, and retrieve” breeds
(HPRs). There are separate
working tests for each of these
groups, which are competitive
in an informal way.
Gundog feld trials and tests
are a great way to discover your
dog’s potential and will give you
something to aim for with your
training. This work is easy for
gundogs bred specifcally for the
purpose, and the most diffcult
thing is keeping control when
they are doing something they
love to do.
6Dummy run
Canvas dummies, weighing about the same as a
game bird, are used as a substitute for the real
thing during field trials and working tests.
“Gundog field trials and tests are a
great way to discover your dog’s potential,
and will give you something to aim for.”
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6Flushing
Spaniels are used
for flushing game
toward guns. They are
busy and active,
running continuously,
scenting out birds, and
scaring them into the
air. Different varieties
of spaniel have
different roles: some
are bred to work in
thick cover, others for
open ground or water.
4Control
Shooting can be hazardous, and
it is important that gundogs are
under control at all times. Gundogs
must work as instructed, not do as
they please. They must have a
strong desire to work, but also
entirely willing to take direction.
6Retrieving
Retrieving game from water takes
strength and stamina. Dogs must
have a strong possessive drive so
that they will swim a long way to
fetch a fallen bird. They must also
be agreeable enough to give it up
to the handler on their return.
5Pointing
Pointers and setters are used to locate birds for
shooting and to indicate silently to the hunter by
standing in this familiar posture. A dog should
do this until the hunter signals he is ready, then
the dog should scare the bird into the air.
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The less well-known dog sports
are sometime restricted, depending
on which breed of dog you have.
Only Afghan Hounds can take part
in Afghan Hound racing, for
instance, and it is usually only
Newfoundlands and their crosses
that are suitable for water work,
Bloodhounds that take part
in Bloodhound tracking tests,
and Bernese Mountain Dogs
that go carting.
As well as the more popular dog sports, there are a lot of less well-known
ones in which you can participate. Which sport is right for you depends
on the dog you have, your personal preference, and your capabilities.
Other sports are open to all
dogs, but entries are sometimes
restricted by ability and ftness.
For example, only the most active
of dogs can take part in bike- or
ski-joring or sled-dog racing.
Similarly, only certain people have
the physical capacity to take part
in demanding sports, such as
cani-cross or dog hiking. Which
sport you choose for you and your
dog is a matter of what suits you
Other sports
both, as well as personal
preference. Your choice also
depends, to some extent, on which
sports are available in the area you
live in. However, if you are very
interested in a sport, there is
always a way to do it. Although it is
undeniably diffcult to go ski-joring
if you live in an area with no snow,
you can go bike-joring instead if
you can fnd roads and tracks
nearby that are suitable.
6Newfoundland rescue
Newfoundlands excel at water rescue. At special
clubs, they learn to retrieve articles from the
water, progressing to the more difficult task
of rescuing people and boats.
5Afghan
Hound racing
This is a fun sport for
owners who like to
see their dogs run and
want to give them the
opportunity to race
in a safe place. The
dogs are muzzled to
prevent any injuries
during the times of
high excitement.
5Disc dog
Disc-dog competitions involve a dog catching a
Frisbee over increasingly larger distances. There
is also a freestyle competition, where owner
and dog can weave routines into their throwing
and catching to earn more points.
“Which sport is right
for you and your dog
is a matter of what
suits you both, and
personal preference.”
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57Joring
The art of staying on a bike or skis while being
pulled by dogs has developed into an organized
sport. Dogs are harnessed and attached via
a tow-line. It’s great for dogs who love to run!
6Cani-cross
In cani-cross, competitors run attached to their
dog (or dogs) over a timed cross-country course.
Various levels are available to allow for all
fitness levels and abilities.
6Protection sports
Protection sports such as Schutzhund (“protection
dog”) are popular with serious trainers. Reputable
clubs avoid teaching unwanted aggression.
4Dog hiking
Dog hiking is for less competitive owners who
enjoy active long walks with their dogs.
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Sled dogs
Huskies are the fastest, most efficient sled
dogs, as they were purpose bred for this
task. Other types of dog also enjoy the
thrill of running fast over long distances,
and can easily be trained to participate.
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Index
A
adolescence, problems in 96–7
Afghan Hound Racing 246
ageing see elderly dogs
aggression
adolescence and other dogs 97
and barking 75
between two dogs in same
house 221
bitches in season 89
and chasing 197
and fear 92, 218
and muzzles 219
and other animals 70
preventing 75, 220–1
in puppies 92
reasons for 218–21
see also biting
agility course 234–7
Airedale Terrier 34
Akita 41
attention–seeking 67
Australian Sheepdog 33
B
babies and dogs,
relationship between 69
barking
and aggression 75
excessive 198–9
and fetching the leash 179
ignoring 118
and lack of exercise 77
and puppies 198
Bassett Hound 32, 33
bathing 87
Beagle 20, 29
Bearded Collie 33
bed, sending to 182–3
with babies in house 69
when visitors come 225
Belgian Shepherd 37
Bernese Mountain Dog 44, 246
Bichon Frise 24
bitches in season,
and aggression 89
biting
and aggression 75, 218
in elderly dogs 98
growling and snapping, reasons
for 74, 75
play, in puppies 94
and shyness 219
Bloodhound 55, 246
body language
between dogs 58–9
dog to human 60–1, 75
human to dog 64–5, 125
nose licking 60
yawning 60
bones, and chewing 79
Border Collie 20, 32
Border Terrier 26
boredom, dealing with 206
Boston Terrier 24
Boxer 35
brain, and reasoning
capabilities 52–3, 210–11
breeding 88–9
Brittany 30
Bull Mastiff 45
Bull Terrier 31
Bulldog 31
C
Cairn Terrier 26
cani–cross 247
canine freestyle
competitions 130, 238–9
car travel
and older dogs 100
and “wait”command 157
carting 246
cats, relationship with 71, 196
Cavalier King Charles 26
chasing, stopping 196–7
chasing games 80–1
with other animals 71
and sticks 81
checking in 149–51
chewing
and bones 79
as familiarization process 177
and lack of exercise 77
in puppies 57, 94–5
chews, types of 95
Chihuahua 20, 22
children and dogs,
relationships 68–9, 196
choice of dog
and owner’s lifestyle 14–15, 16
where to find a dog 16–17
Cocker Spaniel 30
cognitive dysfunction
syndrome 101
colors, ability to see 55
“come” command 77, 107, 124–5
in adolescence 96–7
advanced 146–7, 148–9
and body signals 65, 125
chase recall 154–5
and checking in 150–1
and distraction techniques 148
and free running 212, 213
hand signal 111
and long lines 97, 148
and rewards 107, 124–5, 149
and scolding for other
things 125, 147
communication
between dogs 58–9
dog to human 60–1
Corgi 29
crossbreeds 46–7
D
Dachshund 27
Dalmatian 21, 32, 34
dancing with dogs 238–9
deafness, selective 214
depression 67
diet 78–9
see also food
disc–dog competitions 246
disease, inherited 20, 89
disobedience
in adolescence 97
away from home,
causes of 214–15
understanding 210–11
distraction techniques 148,
156–7, 214
Doberman 40
dog evolution 18–19
breed groupings 20–1
dog hiking 247
dog shows 19
dog sports, warm–up
exercise 162
dog–food types 78
Dogue de Bordeaux 41
domestication process 18–19
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door, shutting the 184–5, 210
“down” command 126–7
hand signal 111
and playing dead 166
and settling 192–3
“drop” command 139
E
ears
deafness, selective 214
inspecting 200
elderly dogs
ageing, effects of 98–9
and car travel 100
exercise in 98
eyesight, failing 98, 101
health checks 100–1
emotion, showing 52, 53
energy levels
and concentration 135,
155, 212–13
harnessing energy 76–7
management of 212–13
requirements and diet 79
and sporting activities 230
exercise
benefits of 76–7
in elderly dogs 98
lack of, problems
arising from 77
mental 77
warm–up, for dog sports 162
exploring
and distraction 207
in puppies 96–7
eyes see sight
F
fear
and aggression 92, 218
dog’s way of dealing with 75
in elderly dogs 101
noise phobias 56, 100, 196
in puppies 92
signs of 67, 74–5
field–trial competitions 244–5
Flat–coated Retriever 38
flyball 240–1
food
obsession, and lack of
exercise 77
protection of 220
snatching 190–1
see also diet
foster owners 16
Fox Terrier 29
freestyle competitions 130, 238–9
freeze option 75
French Bulldog 28
G
German Shepherd Dog 39
German Short–haired
Pointer 34
German Wirehaired Pointer 37
Giant Schnauzer 40
Golden Retriever 20, 38
Great Dane 45, 98
grooming
coat types 87
see also handling and grooming
growling and snapping see
aggression; biting
guide dogs 36
gundog work 244–5
H
hand signals
effectiveness of 64
and puppies 107
and voice commands, use
of both 64
see also individual commands
handling and grooming 86–7
acceptance of 200–1
aggressive reaction to 221
Havanese 24
health
certificates, puppies 20
checks, in elderly dogs 100–1
hearing
loss, in elderly dogs 98
sense of 56
heelwork to music 238–9
high five trick 164–5
hidden objects, finding 77
hide and seek games 172–3
Hovawart 37
hunting instincts 70–1
Husky 248–9
I
intruders, imaginary 77
J
Jack Russell Terrier 20, 25, 98
jumping
in competitions 234, 237
training 168–9, 222
jumping up
and energy levels 213
and rewards 106, 118, 119, 133
stopping 52, 188–9
L
Labradoodle 46–7
Labrador Retriever 36
leash
fetching 178–9, 225
fetching when not asked 179
off–leash running 77
pulling on 132, 134–5,
222, 225
training on long 97, 118–19,
138,139, 148, 215
walking on a loose 132–3
learning process, trial
and error in 106–7
“leave”command 154–5
Leonberger 44
lifting your dog 201
Llasa Apso 26
logic, lack of 52
Lurcher 55
luring technique 107, 110,
122, 125, 130
lying down see “down” command
M
Maltese 22
mating 88–9
message, taking a 170–1
Miniature Pinscher 23
Miniature Poodle 24
Miniature Schnauzer 27
mongrels 46
motivation
different from human 52
and rewards 109
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N
nail clipping 87
neutering 89
Newfoundland 45, 246
noise phobias 56, 100, 196
nose licking 60
nutrition 78–9
O
obedience trials 240–1
off-leash running 77
P
pack instinct 66, 67
Papillon 25
Parson Jack Russell
Terrier 25
paws
examining 201
shaking a paw trick 164
perspective, seeing world
from dog”s 57
pet behaviorist 75, 221
phantom pregnancy 89
playing
benefits of 85
and chase recall 154–5
with children 69
“come” command,
interrupting 146–7
enthusiasm for 84, 85
instinctive 80
no interest in 224
and overheating 81
play fighting 59
reasons for 80–1
and retrieval training 80–1
and rewards 84, 85, 108–9
well-behaved 84–5
playing dead 166–7
and rolling on to back 223
Pointers 34, 37
police dogs 39
Pomeranian 23
positive training
methods 67
predation sequence 18–19
predatory instincts 70–1
protection sports 247
Pug 27
puppies
adolescence problems 96–7
aggression in 92
attention span, short 213
bad habits, prevention of
119, 219, 220
and barking 198
biting in play 94
boundary setting 93
breeder’s reputation,
checking 17
and chasing, stopping 196, 197
chewing 57, 94–5
and children,
relationship between 69, 196
choice see choice of dog
and early social
relationships 17, 70, 71, 75, 92
exercise 77
and exploring 96–7
fear in 92
finding homes for 17, 89
first year 92–3, 219
and hand signals 107
health certificates 20
jump training, dangers of 168
luring technique 110
“crazy five minutes” 77
and mother, checking on 17
and playing 84
problem solutions 94–5
and rewards 92–3, 107
toilet training 95
training classes 95
pushing through door,
stopping 194–5
R
recall see “come” command
rescue centers 16
retrieval training
for competitions 240
development of 76, 77, 140–1
and “drop” command 139
finding lost toy 172–3
forgetting toy 210–11
and giving to hand 141
and “good dog” praise
138, 140, 141, 211
and gundog work 245
and jumping with toy in
mouth 222
and leash fetching 178–9
“leave” command 154–5
and owner enthusiasm 137
and playing 80–1
putting toys away 180–1
and groceries, carrying 176–7
“stop” command 155
and teasing 141
toy grabbing by trainer 139
and toys 136–9
and training leash 138, 139
and “wait” command 140
Retrievers 20, 36, 38
rewards
and bad habits, curing 118–19
and boredom, dealing
with 206
and concentration 206, 207
and cues 113, 114
enhancing 206–7
“good dog” response 117, 151
hierarchy of 108
jackpot 116–17, 185
and jumping up 106, 118,
119, 133
and learning process 107
and motivation 109
occasional 116–17
and playing 84, 85, 108–9
and puppies 92–3, 107
and repeated behaviors 106–7
rules for 117
and social approval 109, 206
timing of 106–7, 112–13, 208–9
types of 108
and walking on a loose leash
132–3
see also individual commands
Rhodesian Ridgeback 40
Rottweiler 44
Rough Collie 33
running away
and breeding season 88
and lack of exercise 77
S
safety measures 74–5
St Bernard 20, 45
scent
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investigation 58, 59
marking 88
selective breeding 19, 55, 89
settle training 192–3, 212
Shar Pei 31
Shetland Sheepdog 28
Shih Tzu 25
Siberian Husky 33
sight
eyes, examining 201
failing, in older dogs 98, 101
sense of 55
“sit” command
at a distance 152–3, 222
in different places 114,
122–3
hand and voice signals
64, 122
pushing on hindquarters
111
and wait 128–9
sixth sense 57
sled dogs 248–9º
smell, sense of 54–5
socializing
and dog”s thinking 52
from puppyhood 17, 70,
71, 75, 91
with other animals
70–1, 220
with other animals, and
checking in 150–1, 156
with other people, and
checking in 150–1
with other people,
controlling 156, 224
Spaniels 26, 31, 46, 245
spin exercise 162–3
sporting activities 230–1
fitness levels 232–3
see also individual sports
Springer Spaniel 31
Staffordshire Bull
Terrier 29
“stand” command 130–1
hand signal 111
and show dogs 130
Standard Poodle 34
sticks, danger of 81, 213
“stop” command 155
T
taste, sense of 56–7
teeth, inspecting 200
temperament, selection by 15
terriers
and aggression 221
hunting instincts 70–1
see also individual
terriers
think, how dogs 52–3, 106
Tibetan Terrier 28
toilet training, puppies 95
toy games
and chasing, stopping 196–7
finding lost toy 172–3
forgetting toys 210–11
jumping with toy in
mouth 222
learning to play with 84
limiting use for more
concentration 207
as mind games 213
no interest in 81
puppies and biting 94
putting away toys 180–1
refusal to drop toy 223
and retrieval training
136–9
as rewards 109
squeaky 81
toy grabbing by trainer 139
Toy Poodle 23
training
association, learning by
114, 215
bad habits, curing 118–19
by children 68–9
hand signals 111
luring technique 107,
110, 122, 125, 130
making it easy for the
dog 210–11
techniques 110–11
three–minute rule 107
and timing of reward
106–7, 112–13, 208–9
treats see rewards
tricks, teaching 77, 157
trust 66, 75
and touching 86
tug–of–war games 81
U
understanding, helping
with dog”s 52–3, 210–11
V
voice commands 107
and “good dog” response
117, 138, 140, 141, 151, 211
and hand signals, use of
both 64
leash fetching 225
and rewards 207
see also individual
commands
W
“wait” command 140
in cars 157
and distance 129
hand signals 11,
128–9
and settle, difference
between 93
and “stay down” 129
walk close command
and distraction of other
dogs 156
hand signal 111, 132
walking 76, 77
and fetching the
leash 178–9
on loose leash 132–3,
134
and pulling on the leash
132, 134–5, 222, 225
water work 246
wave exercise 160–1,
164
weight, ideal 79, 232
Weimaraner 41
welcome 52
West Highland Terrier 27
Whippet 30
working trials 240–1
Y
yawning 60
Yorkshire Terrier 23
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Contacts
USA
DOG AND PUPPY TRAINING
Dog and puppy training classes, or
individual tuition, can help you to
progress more rapidly and assist with any
individual difficulties. Choose someone
experienced and knowledgeable, who
uses only positive methods with both dogs
and their owners. Other good sources of
information about local trainers are local
vets, dog wardens, groomers, and pet
shops.
The following are useful organizations to
contact when looking for a dog or puppy
trainer:
The Association of Pet Dog Trainers
www.apdt.com
E-mail: information@apdt.com
Tel: 1-800-PET-DOGS
(1-800-738-3647)
150 Executive Center Drive Box 35,
Greenville, SC 29615
National Association of Dog
Obedience Instructors
www.nadoi.org
PMB 369
729 Grapevine Hwy, Hurst, Texas
76054-2085, USA
CANADA
Canadian Association of Pet Dog
Trainers
www.cappdt.ca
156097 Highway 10
Shelburne, ON
L0N 1S0 Canada
BEHAVIOR PROBLEMS
If you are experiencing behavior problems
with your dog, it is best to get help fast
before habits become too established.
Look for someone with both practical
experience and academic knowledge. They
should work on veterinary referral, and
be insured.
Contact the following organizations or ask
your veterinarian to refer you to someone
they trust
The International Association of
Animal Behavior Consultants
www.iaabc.org
E-mail: info@iaabc.org
IAABC
565 Callery Road, Cranberry Township,
PA 16066
Animal Behavior Society
http://www.animalbehavior.org/
ABSAppliedBehavior/caab-directory
SOURCES OF NEW DOGS AND
PUPPIES
As well as breeders, reputable rescue
organizations are a good source of new
puppies and adult dogs. Try to find a
center where they make the effort to
assess all the dogs in their care so you can
choose one to suit your temperament and
lifestyle.
The following are useful organizations
to contact when looking for a new dog or
puppy:
American Society for the Prevention
of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
www.aspca.org
Tel: (212) 876-7700
424 E. 92nd St, New York, NY 10128-6804
The Humane Society of the
United States
www.hsus.org
Tel: (202) 452-1100
2100 L St., NW, Washington, DC 20037
For further information on dog sports or
breeders with puppies, contact:
American Kennel Club
www.akc.org
Tel: (919) 233.9767
AKC Customer Care
8051 Arco Corporate Drive, Suite 100,
Raleigh, NC 27617-3390
CANADA
Canadian Kennel Club
www.ckc.ca
200 Ronson Drive, Suite 400
Etobicoke, Ontario,
M9W 5Z9, Canada
Canadian Federation of Humane
Societies
www.cfhs.ca
102-30 Concourse Gate, Ottawa, Ontario,
K2E 7V7, Canada
Speaking of Dogs
www.speakingofdogs.com
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The author would like to thank the
following: All those who have so kindly
and willingly contributed to my
knowledge of dog training and behavior,
including John Rogerson, Ian Dunbar,
the late John Fisher, Tony Orchard, Carla
Nieuwenhuizen, and many, many others.
I would also like to thank Bobs
Broadbent and Kris Glover who helped
organize dogs and people for the photos
when I couldn’t be there. Thank you,
also, to Victoria Wiggins of Dorling
Kindersley for her expertise and
patience, especially when I was losing
mine. And fnally, I would like to thank
the dogs, those I have known and loved
(particularly my beautiful Spider who
appears in so many of the pictures in
this book), those I have tried to help,
and those who I’ve had fun with
throughout my life. Without what I have
learned from them, this book could
never have been written.
Dorling Kindersley would like to
thank the following:
Color retouching: Craig Laker
Additional help: Simon Murrell
Additional design: Yenmai Tsang
Illustrations: Richard Tibbits
Also, Bobs Broadbent and Kris Glover,
David Summers, Margaret and
David Godel, Brad Murray and Jenny
Woodcock, MDS Shows and Paws in the
Park, Rachel Tooby and all the staff and
dogs at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home,
Old Windsor Branch.
And those who modelled in the book:
Sandra Alden, Laura Andrews
Lucy Avery, Gwen Bailey
Graham Bates, L. R. Bird
Sara Bradford, Bobs Broadbent
Savanagh Bryant, Alice Bungay
Tracy Bungay, Shelly Bushell
Ben Carlin, Lily Carlin
Nicky Carlin, Pen Carlin
Siobhan Dawson, Michael Donnelly
Deborah Duguid Farrant
Daniel Eaton, Helen Gardom
Kristina Glover, Wendy Grantham
Nala Gunstone, Elaine Hale
Emma Hugo, Jeremy Hugo
Sophie Hugo, Frances Johnstone
Ali Kaye, Sally Knight, Luca Lawrence
Poppy Lawrence, Tracy Lawrence
Alistair Lion, Kate Lye, Harriet
Mackevicius, Marika Marsh
Caroline Mooty, Jamie Mooty
Patrick Mooty, Iona Morris, Wil Morris
Elizabeth Munsey, Wendy Murphy,
Nicolette O’Neill, Phil Ormerond,
Ruth O’Rourke, Alice Peacock
Claire Pearson, Charlotte Pimm
David Roberts, Jessica Ryan-Ndegwa
Sebastian Ryan-Ndegwa, Joanne
Summers, Rob Symonds, Ian Tautz
Siân Thomas, Peter Thompson
Dawn Thorne, James Thorne
Marie Travers, Sarah Tyzack
Sophie von Maltzahn, Julie Warner
Esme Waters, Victoria Wiggins
Tomoko Wingate, Nigel Wright
Thank you to all the dogs whose
photographs appear in this book:
Andy, Archie, Barney, Bella, Ben, Bertha,
Billy, Blue, Bongo, Boris, Casha, Charlie
Chesil, Coco, Dave, Diesel, Dotty, Fidget,
Fin, Fizz, Gus, Harvey, Hero, Hoola, Jack,
Jake, Jess, Jessie, Lettie, Libby, Lily, Lola,
Maisie, Millie, Moojah, Morgan, Nuba,
Otto, Ozzy, Penny, Q, Rosie, Sasuke,
Scally, Scamps, Shep, Skipper, Spencer
Spider, Talula, Thomas, Tink, Toby, Tom,
Topsy, Walter, Zorro
Picture credits
The publisher would like to thank the
following for their kind permission to
reproduce the photographs:
l=left, r=right, t=top, c=centre, a=above,
b=below.
18 Alamy Images: Dave Porter (bc).
FLPA: Mike Lane (cr). 36 Getty
Images: Altrendo (br). 38 FLPA:
Imagebroker/Stefanie Krause-
Wieczorek (clb). 39 Alamy Images:
Duravitski (bl). Corbis: Jim Craigmyle
(br). 42 Alamy Images: Juniors
Bildarchiv (cla). Corbis: Sygma/Yves
Forestier (tr). 52 Corbis: Reuters/You
Sung-Ho (br). 71 Alamy Images:
WoodyStock (c). 210 Corbis: Lynda
Richardson (br). FLPA: Erica Olsen (c).
212 Getty Images: Iconica/Michael
Cogliantry (cl). 223 Alamy Images:
Arco Images GmbH (c); PetStockBoys
(t). www.chillpics.co.uk/www.canix.
co.uk: Shane Wilkinson (cr). 236 FLPA:
Imagebroker/Alexander Trocha (cl).
Still Pictures: Biosphoto/Klein J. &
Hubert M.-L. (bc) (br). 237 Rex
Features: Keystone USA/SB. 240 FLPA:
Imagebroker/Thorsten Eckert (br). 241
Alamy Images: Ashley Cooper (bl);
SHOUT (cr). Still Pictures: Biosphoto/
Klein J. & Hubert M.-L. (tr). 243 Alamy
Images: Arco Images GmbH (c); Daniel
Dempster Photography (tr). FLPA:
Minden Pictures/Mark Ray Croft (tl).
244 Photolibrary: Juniors Bildarchiv
(bl) (bc) (br). Rex Features: Ken McKay
(t). 245 Alamy Images: Sherab (cr).
Photolibrary: Juniors Bildarchiv (bl)
(bc) (br). 246 Alamy Images:
blickwinkel (br); Shaun Flannery (bl).
Getty Images: Stone/Sven Jacobsen
(cl). 247 Alamy Images: Ultimate
Group, LLC (bc). iStockphoto.com: Rolf
Klebsattel (clb). PA Photos: AP Photo/
Lewiston Sun Journal, Jose Leiva (tr).
Rex Features: Newspix/Jody D’arcy (tl).
www.chillpics.co.uk/www.canix.co.uk:
Shane Wilkinson (br). 248-249
Photolibrary: Joel Sheagren
All other images © Dorling Kindersley
For further information see:
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Acknowledgments
Note: Any dogs that have appeared in this book with
docked tails had the procedure done before laws were
introduced to prohibit the practice in some countries.
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“Training is a life-long process. Keep
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them fun for both of you, and you will have
a well-behaved dog for life.”
Gwen Bailey
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SUPERDOG

TRAINING YOUR

SUPERDOG
GWEN BAILEY

TRAINING YOUR

dk. 375 Hudson Street. or otherwise).Introduction 6 LONDON. photocopying. New York. Steve Setford. Heather Thomas. or educational use. premiums. stored in. All rights reserved Without limiting the rights under coypright reserved above. New York. MUNICH. New York. NEW YORK. Steve Woosnam-Savage Design Assistant Rebecca Tennant Production Rebecca Short Jacket Designer Duncan Turner Managing Art Editor Phil Ormerod Art Director Bryn Walls Photographic Art Direction Bev Speight. in any form. mechanical. or by any means (electronic. 2009 Published in the United States by DK Publishing. New York. no part of this publication may be reproduced. MELBOURNE. recording.com Color reproduction by Alta Images. or transmitted. AND DELHI 1 2 3 The right dog for you 10 Choosing a dog 12 Catalogue of popular breeds 22 Project Art Editor Francis Wong Designers Peter Laws. fund-raising. 10014 or special sales@dk. Rebecca Warren Editorial Assistants Lizzie Munsey. 10014 09 10 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 SD253—May 2009 Text copyright © Gwen Bailey Copyright © 2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited. Nigel Wright XAB Design Project Editor Victoria Wiggins Editors Jamie Ambrose. Jaime Tenreiro Production Editor Maria Elia Managing Editor Sarah Larter Publishing Manager Liz Wheeler Publisher Jonathan Metcalf Photographer Gerard Brown Building bonds 48 Dog talk 50 What your dog needs 72 Age-related issues 90 Basic training 102 How dogs learn 104 Good grounding 120 Sit 122 Come when called 124 Down 126 Wait 128 Stand 130 Walking on a loose leash 1 132 Walking on a loose leash 2 134 Retrieve 1 136 Retrieve 2 138 Developing the retrieve 140 First American Edition. or introduced into a retrieval system. Singapore Discover more at www. 375 Hudson Street. For details contact DK Publishing Special Markets. ISBN 978-0-7566-4978-4 DK books are available at special discounts when purchased in bulk for sales promotions.com Contents . Colourscan Printed and bound by Star Standard. without the prior written permission of both the copyright holder and the above publisher of this book.

please seek the advice of a qualified professional. Neither the publishers or the author accept any legal responsibility for any personal injury or injuries to dogs or other damage or loss arising from the undertaking of any of the activities or exercises presented in this book. or from the reliance on any advice in this book. . such as a pet or behavioral expert.4 Advanced training 142 Developing skills 144 Advanced recalls 1 146 Advanced recalls 2 148 Checking in 150 Sit at a distance 152 Chase recall 154 Learning with distractions 156 5 6 Doggy dilemmas 202 Solving training problems 204 Troubleshooting 222 Out and about 226 Sports and fun 228 Showing off 158 Wave 160 Spin 162 High five 164 Play dead 166 Jump 168 Take a message 170 Find the lost toy 172 Index 250 Useful contacts 254 Acknowledgments 255 Housework 174 Carry the groceries 176 Fetch the leash 178 Put the toys away 180 Go to bed 182 Shut the door 184 Best behavior 186 No jumping 188 No snatching 190 Settle 192 No pushing 194 No chasing 196 No barking 198 Accepting handling 200 Disclaimer Every effort has been made to ensure that the information in this book is accurate. If your dog is ill or has behavioral problems.

based on love. but the exercises in this book are designed to be easy at first. Introduction Many owners dream of a owning a happy. You just have to know how to do it. Whether you already own a dog. and building a relationship with your dog. It takes effort and knowledge. It also gives you the necessary guidance to develop an . or are about to acquire a new adult dog or puppy. trust. sit when asked. here are the operating instructions for your dog. this book will help you to bring out the best in him and maximize the benefits of ownership. Habits learned in puppyhood will last a lifetime. and walk on a loose leash will make walks more pleasant and safer. Essential lessons Training your dog to come back when you call. Owners are solely responsible for their good education. based on love and respect. progressing through to more difficult training later as you develop your skills. never makes a wrong move. Further. Holding the future Puppies are delightful. thinking beings with adaptable brains that can be reprogramed into good habits. and here you will find all the information you need.Loving relationship Dogs are social animals. this book tells you how to develop a good working relationship with your dog. They may seem complex. and seems to know their every thought. is the essential foundation for positive training. Just like an operating manual for a car or washing machine. outgoing dog that does everything they ask. and respect. your dog can be like this too. Well. but need lots of care. but all the knowledge you need is in this book. Dogs are living.

but is earned by taking control of events and making good decisions. . Not only is this unacceptable to owners. If you don’t already have a dog. what his interests are. until now. Knowing how your dog’s mind works. Fortunately. it also results in a one-sided relationship and a worried. and this book will take you through these modern methods step-by-step. healthy life. Contented life A dog that has all of his psychological and physical needs met will be happy and relaxed.Clever dog Teaching your dog to find lost keys takes patience and skill. or unwilling dog. which will allow you to train him easily. awareness of your dog’s needs and abilities. what he finds rewarding. who wish to be kind to their canine companion. have not been available in books. are essential if you are to be a good owner and a good trainer. and which. positive methods are now available. you will be able to work out which types of inherited traits your dog has— knowledge that will help you to teach him in a way appropriate to his needs. this book will help you to choose one that will be right for your lifestyle. punishment-based methods were commonly used for dog training. Respect can’t be gained by intimidation. and what makes him feel content at every stage throughout his life. Until recently. but it is an easy exercise for dogs. Through basic training to more advanced exercises. anxious. we will share with you all of the new secrets that are so necessary for success. with their amazing sense of smell. rebellious. If you own a dog already. Taking the lead Leadership and respect are key qualities for an owner. A fulfilled dog is more likely to live a long.

you will maximize your dog’s potential until you own a dog you can be proud to take anywhere—a dog that is happy. and among their most appealing attributes are their sweet naivety and inability to show false emotion. Play energy Dogs love to play and it is essential that owners provide an outlet. in detail. For this reason. how and why your dog does what he does. and how you can use that knowledge to get him to do the things you want him to do willingly. the comprehensive problem-solving section offers solutions to common dilemmas to get you back on track. if you carefully work through all the exercises in this book. This gives them purpose and helps dogs from working stock to feel fulfilled.Useful work Dogs that can help you with household chores can be closely involved with your life. we owe it to our dogs to find out all we can about them. This book shows you. will be enormous. Fun times Teaching fun tricks and exercises will give your dog an outlet for his mental energy. because they cannot think things through. as well as providing him with a way to entertain you and your friends. to help use up playful energy. The benefit to your life. they can become vulnerable in their relationships with us. We control all resources and dogs are totally dependent on us for all their needs. Once the foundations of good behavior and basic training are learned. Dogs do not have such complex minds as humans. Just in case things do go wrong. this book will entice you with ideas for dog sports and activities you can take part in with your well-behaved canine friend. helpful. and responsive—a superdog! . and. However. in the form of games with toys. and that of your dog.

and is a long standing member of the Association of Pet Behavior Counsellors. . Gwen is a Trustee for Battersea Dogs and Cats Home. she helped rehabilitate thousands of rescue dogs and set them on the path of good behavior.Self-control Learning to wait for things you want is an important lesson for dogs. During this time. She lectures worldwide. They bring the challenge of learning new skills and enable you to meet new people and other dogs. Sporting activities Canine sports are entertaining for both dogs and owners. she formed the successful company. Those that learn self-control will be much nicer to live with. Gwen Bailey is an internationally renowned behaviorist and trainer. Gwen worked for one of the UK’s leading animal welfare charities for 12 years as Head of Animal Behavior. is author of many best-selling books on dog behavior. Willing partner Building a strong working relationship with your dog and teaching him a range of cues for a variety of actions will result in a willing friend and partner. which provides a network of positive training classes for young puppies in the UK. Puppy School. To do more preventative work.

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The right dog for you 1 Choosing a dog .

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explaining why different breeds have different behavior traits as well as physical forms. We are all prone to choosing what looks familiar and attractive. however. have a happy life together. and think carefully about what kind of dog will complement your own personality.Choosing a dog Choosing a new dog is exciting and emotional. If and will enable you to find a dog youyou choose an energetic dog. It will also help you decide whether a puppy or an adult may be more suitable. This section will help you to do that. Making the right choice is more likely. ACTIVE DOGS . so that you can find a breed that will fit into your lifestyle. whether it suits us or not. if you take time to consider temperament and characteristics. need to be prepared to be active yourself if you are to that is just right for you.

consider your requirements under the following headings: How much time do you have? Think honestly about whether you have sufficient time for playing games with a dog. sociable dogs. exercising and grooming him. but all dogs need veterinary care as well as health insurance. as even the cleanest dog brings in dirt and makes a lot of mess. To make selecting a dog easier. plus the extra time that will be needed for keeping your house clean. Choosing a dog that fits into your home easily and matches your expectations will take some research. but it will result in a happy dog and a contented family. Do you have enough spare time every day for owning a dog? How much are you at home? If you add up the hours you spend at home during an average week. such as spaniels. and there are numerous breeds and different types of character from which to choose. you may find that your lifestyle is not suited to owning a dog that needs many hours of companionship each day. make playful pets. giving him love and attention. you should think very carefully about what you and your family really want from owning one. Some pet insurance companies offer a reduced rate for non- 014 The right dog for you Energetic dogs Dogs with naturally high energy levels need energetic owners who enjoy exercising with them on a daily basis. Providing the right amount of exercise will result in a contented dog.Choosing a dog Thinking carefully about your expectations and requirements before you select a dog will help you to choose one with the right temperament that suits you well and fits easily into your lifestyle and daily routine. How much can you afford? Bigger dogs cost more to feed than small ones. Examine your lifestyle Dogs come in all shapes and sizes. To begin this selection process. Happy families Fun-loving. .

However. elderly relatives. What “personality” and character traits does your ideal dog have? Once you have decided what you want from a dog. they require constant care and attention for essential socialization. until mature. and the difficult housetraining. This dog will often appear familiar. Dogs with coats that need clipping or stripping require frequent visits to the local grooming parlor. other dogs. Choosing by temperament is a much better way to select a dog. Finding out what different dog breeds need in terms of their physical requirements. resembling a previously owned pet. sourcing the right dog for you becomes easier. although you need to make sure that you find a healthy. you must take time to get to know them before you decide.pedigree dogs. They are ready-made dogs and what you see is what you get. training. and companionship. Only consider owning one if you have the time. and seeing if their needs match what you can provide are quite easy. Adult or puppy? You also need to decide whether to get an adult dog or a puppy. All dogs need daily exercise.” Does the dog have to be good with others? Do you have children. Take care to research all these issues thoroughly in advance. and the early education stages are all over. education. or small pets? A new dog in your home will have an impact on everyone in your family and he needs to be able to get along with others. Puppies are lovely. assessing their character type to see if it fits in with yours. well-socialized one whose parents and ancestors had a good temperament. Can you afford all these costs of dog ownership? How active are you? Getting an active dog with lots of energy is not a wise decision if you are a couch potato who likes nothing better than to relax in front of the television all evening and much of the weekend. Adult dogs are already formed. chewing. you should think very carefully about what you and your family want from a dog. Choosing by looks alone without considering the behavior traits and character type of that breed can be a mistake. . Time consuming Puppies are delightful but. and new owners may end up with a dog who does not suit them in fundamental ways. Selecting by temperament Many people choose their dog by browsing through breed books and finding one they like the look of. as well as a large amount of your time in their first year to help them develop into perfect pets. or may even have quite similar facial characteristics to themselves. “To make the process of selection easier. although they will eventually adapt to your ways and routine with some careful education. but they do need an intensive 015 Choosing a dog period of training and education. Consider his effect on existing relationships. Puppies are a clean slate and they are relatively easy to mold to your ways. a baby (or perhaps you are planning to have one in the future).

some specialist rescue centers concentrate on a single breed. These temporary owners learn a lot about the dog in the real-life situation of a home. It is easy to fall in love with the first dog or puppy you see. Take care to choose a healthy animal with the right temperament for you and your family. and staff have to predict what it will be like in a home environment. so make sure you use a reliable source. spend some time getting to know a new dog before deciding. Don’t be tempted to take home the first appealing dog you see. because a dog’s behavior changes when it enters kennels. As well as rescue organizations that cater for all breeds and crossbreeds. as this may reveal unwanted traits or could confirm that he is the right dog for you. so it is worth being patient and hanging on until you find exactly what you are looking for. making it easier to choose one who is right for you. and it requires careful searching. Finding the right dog for you can take time. some rescue centers place all their dogs with foster carers.Where to find your dog Many different places can supply adult dogs and puppies. this may be a good place to source your dog. but not all are reputable. and lifestyle. work. Adult dogs The best source of adult dogs is a reputable rescue center that carefully assesses the dogs it puts up for adoption. and they can usually give you a very clear picture of what you can expect from the dog when it comes to your house to live with you. Instead of kennels. If you know what breed you want. Assessment is difficult. Get to know him At the rescue center. as they rarely make successful pets. . Be prepared You should be prepared for the rescue center to assess your suitability as an owner. but avoid making a hasty choice— you will be spending many years together. Breeders sometimes advertise adult dogs. Beware kennel-raised dogs. The right dog A good rescue center will assess the dogs in their care before putting them up for adoption. They may want to meet all your family and ask some personal questions about your home.

The puppies may look normal. and breeders who want to exchange puppies for cash at the roadside. or are more interested in playing with each other than meeting you. Avoid any who are nervous. “It is worth being patient and hanging on until you find exactly what you are looking for. and you may be put under pressure to take the dog immediately. or if it has been kept in a kennel. Check that the puppy has been reared at home. all the socialization and habituation they need to grow into well-adjusted adult dogs.” house for your visit. and who raises the puppies at home and gives them Sources to avoid Never buy a puppy if you cannot see the conditions in which it was raised or meet its mother. you may not be told the truth about the dog’s history. Steer clear of pet shops. as you will only have a limited time to get to know the dog. . and check that she is friendly. What’s more. move away. outhouse. and not just brought into the Try to find a breeder with a pet dog that has had all the required health tests for that breed.The right environment Always ask to see the puppies with their mother. particularly if the emphasis is on winning show prizes. Pleased to meet you Well-socialized puppies should be interested in strangers and happy to see them. who has bred relatively few litters. because they may obtain dogs from places where they are farmed. Puppies Finding a breeder who produces healthy. Be suspicious of large kennels where many puppies are produced and little effort is put into socializing. Avoid outlets selling many different breeds. The “nest area” should be clean. with a larger “toileting area” that is lined with sheets of newspaper. Research the breeder’s reputation. and come away without a puppy if you do not like what you see. or stable. go for puppies that show an interest in you and readily come to greet you. Acquiring an adult dog via a newspaper advertisement is not advisable. well-socialized dogs with good temperaments is difficult. barn. but they often have health problems and poor temperaments. When choosing.

but has passed many character traits down to our pets. have evolved into cooperative hunters of large prey. 018 The right dog for you Wolf becomes dog There are many theories as to how wolves became domesticated. These are the traits that make domestic dogs so successful as workers and pets. many traits have been retained. on the waste dumps of villages. the most probable being that dogs evolved over many generations from wolves that lived at the edges of human settlements. Although they are very different from their predecessors. moose. and even fish. Although they will catch small animals. elk. Ancestors Intelligent and resourceful. the Gray Wolf is very different from the domestic dog. As a result. such as deer. In order to hunt as a team. they are capable of working together as a pack to bring down much bigger prey. wolves need to live together to build up and maintain bonds between them. and selective breeding has accentuated those we find useful. and caribou.The wolf within Domestic dogs are descendants of the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus). the ancestors of all pet and working dogs. they need to be social and cooperative. Teamwork Gray Wolves. Over the years. Tracking Watching Chasing . including mice. rabbits.

Most breeders now produce dogs to win prizes at shows. their character traits and propensities for different behaviors have been altered to produce a variety of attitudes and characters.” Different forms Domestic dogs look very different to their ancestors. on the waste dumps of villages. Catching Killing Consuming . we have gradually developed all the different types and breeds that exist today. or body types. Their bodies have been transformed to suit the work they were bred for. As well as producing dogs with different behavioral traits. To develop good herding dogs. to produce dogs that were efficient vermin hunters. and they gradually became a distinct species. colors. breeders bred dogs with different morphologies. Conversely. Large. These behaviors have been accentuated in different breeds to produce working dogs for varying purposes. the advent of dog shows and the rise in the number of dogs kept solely as pets have resulted in dogs being selected for appearance only. those with the least fearful genes thrived alongside people. Likewise. the “catch and kill” part of this behavioral sequence was required. Selective breeding From these first village dogs. sizes.“Dogs evolved over many generations from wolves that lived at the edges of human settlements. breeders chose dogs that excelled at the chase element of the hunting sequence. They probably closely resembled the village dogs that can be seen in many developing countries today. using a technique known as selective breeding. so that all sorts of shapes. Predation sequence The full behavioral pattern of a hunting wolf enables it to catch and kill the prey it needs to survive. the smallest and cutest dogs were selected. producing a dog that loved to chase but without the Terrier’s strong desire to catch and 019 Choosing a dog kill. to produce companion dogs. powerful dogs were required to guard livestock and homesteads. and behave very differently too. The winners are the dogs that most closely resemble the breed standard—an arbitrary list of characteristics chosen by a committee of breeders. breeders selected for various parts of the dogs’ hunting sequence (below). and dogs that proved to be good at this were selected for breeding. and coat types are available. This involves breeding only from the dogs that have the particular traits desired. so the biggest dogs were selected for breeding. To assist them in a range of tasks. For example. Recently.

As breeding becomes more selective. companion dogs have been bred as pets. and the problems that they encounter are likely to be the same. The dogs in each of the categories below share common behavior traits. always investigate a breed’s origins before buying. and this results in a wide variety of inherited diseases in dog breeds. Herding dogs have high energy levels and a powerful desire to chase. Those bred to herd cattle usually have a stronger will than sheepdogs. and those that follow trails. and are usually very willing to please. they will all show similarities in the way they adapt to domestic life. but owners should be aware of their propensity to be predatory towards small animals. for which they were bred selectively to make them good at their jobs. and their small size makes them easy to care for. but their large size and high energy levels mean that they are not suitable for owners who do not have the same desire Golden Retriever to exercise. gene pools become smaller. most were originally bred as watchdogs. They are sweetnatured and gentle. Only a few of the breeds often classed as companion dogs were developed purely for this purpose. pull sleds. as their desire to hunt is still very strong. Each breed has a temperament to suit the work it was required to do. and are Border Collie close-bonding and protective. these tenacious. Other working dogs Many dogs were bred for other purposes. but both enjoy a close bond with their owners. such as to guard. or fight. This allows us to categorize dog breeds according to their intended purpose. 020 The right dog for you These dogs were bred to help hunters shooting game in the field. Companion dogs For generations. Flock guardians were bred to live with sheep. Beagle St. They can cause problems on walks. They lean towards using aggression to solve problems. they are independent and less willing to please than other dogs. They make very good pets. Always check carefully health certificates and bloodlines when purchasing a puppy. to see if it will make a suitable pet. Jack Russell Terrier and are great characters. it is possible to find out what tasks the dogs were originally developed to perform.Breed groupings By tracing the history of breeds back to their beginnings. or for some other type of work. Dogs to help hunters Dogs to kill vermin Bred to catch and kill. This helps us choose which dog is best suited to our lifestyle. They typically enjoy retrieving. While good natured and easy going. When kept as pets. Dogs to help shepherds Shepherd dogs fall into two groups: the popular herders and the less-well-known flock guardians. feisty breeds are popular as pets due to their small size. Bernard . to ensure good health for the life of your dog. Chihuahua Dogs to hunt Hunting dogs fall into two categories: those that hunt by sight. These dogs have strong personalities. and need good early socialization and training.

. and to make a fashion statement. it is easy to train the dogs to behave like this for demonstrations. Since the breed was developed specifically for such a purpose.Carriage dogs Dalmatians were bred to run alongside or under carriages.

or who do not have the time to exercise a dog for several hours a day. Due to their diminutive size. assertive dogs as long as the bigger dog poses no real threat. they usually have big personalities. The Chihuahua’s most likely ancestor is a dog called the Techchi. Maltese dogs require regular visits to the grooming salon. playful Exercise Minimal Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping Long-haired Chihuahua Originally an ancient breed from the island of Malta. 022 The right dog for you own. Chihuahua Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). They still need exercise and stimulation. and the hair on their head must be clipped or tied to enable them to see out. erect ears This active little dog originated in Mexico as early as the 9th century. which makes them great as pets. making them unsuitable for clumsy adults or families with toddlers. but. Chihuahuas are easily damaged. and come in both long-haired and short-haired varieties. this West Highland Terrier looks sweet. lively. They need good early socialization and protection from being overwhelmed when living in a world of giants. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Friendly. are cheaper to feed.Small dogs Most small dogs tend to be easier to care for and keep clean. small dogs can hold their Dachshund roll over Submission is a useful strategy for dealing with larger. . Although they may be small. The temptation is for owners to protect them by keeping them away from large dogs who may harm them. Sweet but spirited A large dog in a small body. but can also get them into trouble with bigger dogs. but owners must be careful to ensure that all of their dog’s needs are met. but are usually content to receive less than their larger canine cousins. these small dogs have been bred as companions for many generations. and usually need less exercise than larger members of the species. who makes an ideal pet for those owners who enjoy caring for his long coat. but has a strong character. The result is a happy little dog. Small dogs are ideal for people who live in small spaces or urban areas. It can be tempting to treat small dogs as toys. These little dogs often do not think of themselves as small. from the Toltec civilization. The introduction of hairless Oriental genes has made the modern Chihuahua smaller than its predecessor— Chihuahuas are the smallest of all dogs. however. loyal Exercise Minimal Grooming Minimal Large. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Feisty. and many develop effective strategies for dealing with larger dogs. Short-haired Chihuahua Maltese Fringed tail Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). and they are given every opportunity to indulge in natural canine behavior. fun-loving. if they are properly socialized.

The hair around their eyes needs to be clipped or tied up to enable them to see where they are going. the Toy was bred from the Standard Poodle. intelligent. Coat care is an important consideration for prospective owners. England in the 19th century. 16–22cm (6–9in) Character Intelligent. whose original function was as a duck retriever. This graceful. extensive grooming Miniature Pinscher Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). and excessive barking can be a problem. this little dog has a terrier’s hunting instincts. easy to train. Miniature Pinschers need good socialization as puppies and plenty of attention and stimulation in their home. and will readily learn any exercise you wish to teach them. good watchdog Exercise Minimal to moderate Grooming Daily. Energetic dogs Although small. good natured. Yorkshire Terriers are very active. especially when young. they retain the extrovert character of their ancestors. and playful. A Yorkshire Terrier’s coat does not shed.Yorkshire Terrier Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Active. They are active. They need the freedom to run and play. and benefits from a lively household with plenty of stimulation. Small and feisty. and requires daily grooming to stay in good condition. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Active. intelligent. from spitz-type Arctic sled dogs. and many Yorkshire Terrier owners are taken by surprise when their small companions unveil their feisty nature if they are threatened. clever Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal Toy Poodle Size 1–3kg (2–6lb). 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Lively. It is very much a terrier. feisty. The smallest of all the poodles. Yorkshire Terriers need plenty of early socialization to make them feel content and at peace with the world around them. The Miniature Pinscher was bred in the 19th century. where it was bred by coal miners and mill workers to kill rats. to kill rats on German farms. Their thick coat can make them excessively hot in warm climates. protective. Miniaturized by selective breeding. lively Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping Pomeranians originated in Poland and Germany. and also to prevent them becoming too protective of their owners. 023 Choosing a dog Pomeranian Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). Tan and black coat . athletic little dog is clever. courageous Exercise Minimal to moderate Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping This dog originated in Yorkshire.

The Poodle’s pom-poms Dense. With a lighter weight and more silky coat than the Bichon Frise. agile. Miniature Poodles are clever and agile and made good circus performers. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Playful. they are commonly owned by agility and obedience competitors. where they developed into today’s Havanese and became the Cuban national dog. the French developed the Poodle into three sizes. good-natured. good-natured. and they make very energetic. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Playful. Small. Nowadays. the Bichon Frise was developed on the island of Tenerife. compact feet . they have a happy. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Gentle. bichon-type dogs travelled with Spanish sailors to Cuba. but most pet poodles now have a simple clip. but bichontype dogs have been traced back thousands of years. sociable Exercise Minimal to moderate Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping 024 The right dog for you The exact origins of the Bichon Frise are unclear. Massachusetts. As a result. good-natured Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming and regular clipping were once thought necessary to protect the working dogs’ joints from cold water. as well as breathing problems during exercise. in the mid-19th century from bulldogs.Havanese Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). These dogs are sweet-natured and sociable. terriers. soft double coat Plumed tail Bichon Frise Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). the Miniature being the middle size. Later. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Intelligent. curly coat Bred in Boston. Boston Terrier Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). friendly temperament. but their shortened nose can lead to snoring. which means to splash in water—the ancestors of the modern Poodle were bred in the 15th century to hunt water birds. Its characteristic friendly temperament and its happy disposition come from a long history of being bred as a companion. enthusiastic Exercise Minimal to moderate Grooming Minimal The name Poodle comes from the German word pudel. making them ideal pets. trimmed to the same length all over. sociable Exercise Minimal to moderate Grooming Daily grooming In the 16th century. and French Bulldogs. They benefit from having the hair on their head clipped or tied up to enable them to see out. the Boston Terrier has retained very little of its true terrier nature. Popular for many centuries in France and Spain. Long. Miniature Poodle Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). smart workers. these dogs are better suited to a warmer climate and were bred for centuries as companions. good-natured. This agile little dog is sweet-natured and lovable.

and need socializing with cats from an early age. The name Papillon. the Parson is recognized by Kennel Clubs and holds a true pedigree. Most cannot be trusted around small pets. sensitive Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming Parson Russell Terrier Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). longhaired ears resemble a butterfly’s wings when held erect.Papillon Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). Less common than the shorter-legged Jack Russell. and they suit a home where there is always plenty of activity. alert Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming. alert little dogs can be bad tempered. or “butterfly dog”. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Intelligent. and their shortened faces can lead to breathing difficulties. the Shih Tzu is named after the lion it was thought to resemble. occasional clipping Muscular hind legs Bred by Tibetan monks and Chinese Emperors. Like most terriers. they are quite predatory. 025 Choosing a dog Shih Tzu Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Intelligent. . Parson Russell Terriers are intelligent and active. and it benefits healthwise from a larger gene pool. independent. They are intelligent and easily learn what is required. This dog comes in many forms and varieties. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Feisty. In temperament and character. lively. although dainty. These are energetic little dogs and. is taken from the way its large. it is very similar to its taller cousins and needs careful socialization and education. they are robust and active. They are friendly and outgoing if socialized well with people and other dogs. but can be difficult and confrontational if this is not done adequately. The hair on their head needs to be clipped or tied up. these intelligent. Jack Russell Terrier The shorter-legged Jack Russell Terrier is not recognized by Kennel Clubs. The Parson Russell Terrier was created in the 19th century to run with hounds and flush foxes from their lairs. active. Without correct socializing. tenacious Exercise High Grooming Minimal Broad skull The Papillon’s ancestors have been featured in paintings since the 16th century.

they need good training and education. Border Terriers readily adapt their exercise levels to those of their owners. sociable Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal plus periodic stripping Erect ears Protective outer coat A working terrier from as far back as the 17th century. Early socialization with cats is also advisable. Sadly. they make very pleasant companions if they are well socialized and educated. Tail thicker at base Straight forelegs Active pets Border Terriers are happy to go out for long walks but also happy to sit on your lap. biddable Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal plus periodic stripping Stiff outer coat Darkish. straight coat Tail carried over back With a less flattened face than the King Charles Spaniel. being fast and supple. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Active. and care is needed when it is around small pets. inherited diseases abound within the small gene pool for this breed. Bred to hunt foxes. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Friendly. active. this playful dog originated from the Scottish Highlands and islands. playful. rats. as well as a flatter skull. they are easily controlled. silky coat Cairn Terrier Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). Bred by monks in Tibetan temples and monasteries to be watchdogs. Their small size and happy attitude make them popular pets. Although they need careful socialization with cats and other dogs. They are bright little dogs who love human company. and make lovely family dogs if you can find a healthy one. these dogs will let you know when they detect intruders. it still retains some of its predatory nature. the Cavalier King Charles has a longer nose. sweet-natured. playful Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming Lhasa Apso Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). vocal Exercise Moderate Grooming Extensive daily grooming Fairly narrow skull Dense.Border Terrier Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). Long. Cairn Terriers need to be kept busy. Border Terriers do well at agility. Cavalier King Charles Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). Strong-willed and intelligent. Naturally curious. to kill foxes and rodents. although they are also independent enough to be left alone. having been bred for centuries to be companions. dropped ears 026 The right dog for you Border Terriers were bred in Scotland in the 18th century. so require extensive grooming. Cavaliers are true pets. which is a different breed. and rabbits around the cairns (rock piles). active. Fun-loving and easy to live with. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Friendly. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Alert. . Lively and sociable. Lhasa Apsos have a thick coat designed to keep them warm in a cold climate.

wiry coat Long beard Pug Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). pug-like dogs rapidly spread throughout Europe in the 16th century. They were bred to hunt small prey. The long-haired variety requires more extensive grooming than the other two. and children should be discouraged from rough play.Miniature Schnauzer Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). which leads to inherited health problems. They make very good pets for strong-willed owners. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Placid. Thick. easy-going Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal Dachshunds were originally developed in Germany in the 20th century to hunt badgers. laid-back personalities make Dachshunds gentle companions. including some breathing difficulties and snoring. and likes to warn its owners of intruders. Used as a watchdog and controller of vermin on farms. Smooth-haired Dachshund Prominent eye ridges Silky ears Wire-haired Dachshund . A varied coat Dachshunds come in three different coat types. vocal Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily brushing and regular clipping This dog was developed in Germany in the 19th century from the Standard Schnauzer. They are popular despite this. Take care to find a healthy dog as skin complaints are a common problem. playful. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Lively. playful. 027 Choosing a dog Dachshund Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). They come in two sizes—miniature and standard—and in three coat types. Modern-day Pugs have a small gene pool. so be wary around small pets and cats. outgoing. sociable Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming plus regular clipping West Highland Terrier Size 2–6 lb (1–3 kg ). Dachshunds frequently suffer from bad backs because of their long spines and short rib cages. Happy. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Friendly. because of their excellent temperament. 6–9 in (16–22 cm) Character Feisty. Miniature Schnauzers are intelligent and playful and make good family pets. good-natured Exercise Minimal Grooming Minimal West Highland Terriers were developed in the 18th century from the white offspring of Cairn and Scottish Terriers. and slipped discs are common. Care should be taken when lifting these dogs. active. the modern-day breed still has a predatory streak. Possibly bred originally by the Chinese.

medium-sized dogs. They are big enough not to be easily trampled. good-natured Exercise Minimal Grooming Minimal Tibetan Terrier Size 18–30 lb (8–13. Health insurance is usually less expensive than for larger breeds. fun-loving extroverts. as a result. outgoing. 12 in (30–31 cm) Character Affectionate. gentle. The origins of French Bulldogs are unclear. Tibetan Terriers were bred as watchdogs by monks in Tibet and are probably the ancestors of similar breeds such as the Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso. they are good tempered. These dogs are at home in most moderately-sized houses. as might be expected from their heritage. These dogs are lively and vivacious. can be ideal companions. While they require less feeding than larger dogs. Their flattened faces can cause breathing difficulties and also snoring.5 kg). They were originally a cross of the larger Rough Collie with smaller breeds. 028 The right dog for you Shetland Sheepdog Size 13–15 lb (6–7 kg). medium dogs. thorough socialization to counteract their natural wariness. Modern Shetland Sheepdogs have a thick coat that can cause overheating. a medium-sized dog is ideal. They need early. Their compact size also reduces household cleaning. but need careful socialization and early training to be well behaved. such as this Fox Terrier. and this needs to be kept within boundaries. vocal. For people who do not have room for a large dog but feel they need something more substantial than a small breed. sensitive Exercise Moderate Grooming Extensive daily grooming French Bulldog Size 22–28 lb (10–12. to herd livestock in the Shetland Islands of Scotland. but they are likely to have been the smaller progeny of English Bulldogs taken over to France in the 19th century. yet not too big for small spaces. and there is less chance of their wagging tails knocking things over. These playful and sweetnatured dogs will be very loyal to trusted owners. Compared to large dogs. and are not easily damaged by play or other activities. and less likely to pull you over.5 kg). 14–16 in (36–41 cm) Character Intelligent. but have more of a presence than smaller dogs.Medium dogs Medium-sized dogs are less of a handful than the larger breeds. to handle when excited. their exercise needs vary— certain breeds actually require more activity than some of their bigger cousins. like this French Bulldog. medium-sized dogs are easier Just right More substantial than a small dog but less work than a large breed. 14–15 in (35–37 cm) Character Timid. Tibetan Terriers are also very vocal. . French Bulldogs have been bred as companions for generations and. enthusiastic Exercise Moderate Grooming Needs daily grooming and regular clipping Shetland Sheepdogs were developed in the 17th century. can be perfect pets for active owners. Good family pets Less fragile than small dogs. Medium-sized dogs are usually robust enough to play with children.

Beagle Size 18–31 lb (8–14 kg). loyal Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal Staffordshire Bull Terrier Size 24–37 lb (11–17 kg). protective. they make excellent companions for children. Beagles have a happy disposition. and readily get on with others—human or animal. Fox Terriers make good pets for owners capable of handling their strong terrier nature and their predatory instincts. They also display similar characteristics because they did not become two distinct breeds until the early 20th century. Early and careful socialization with other dogs is needed to ensure they remain friendly. vocal Exercise Moderate to high Grooming Minimal The Beagle is an ancient breed. This required a strong will. Modern Beagles retain the desire to track and hunt. should they feel one is needed. They were bred to be determined and courageous—traits that they retain today. the Smooth and the Wire. Cardigan Corgi Staffordshire Bull Terriers were bred in England in the early 19th century for fighting other dogs in pits after bull and bear baiting were outlawed. impulsive Exercise Moderate to high Grooming Minimal The two Fox Terrier breeds. 11–13 in (27–32 cm) Character Intelligent. affectionate dogs are agile. They are easily aroused and ready for a scrap. and benefit from lively owners. Corgis are playful and active. playful. These clever. Smooth Fox Terrier Wire Fox Terrier . Staffordshire Bull Terriers need an active family that can channel the dogs’ excess energy into constructive play with toys. 15–16 in (39–40 cm) Character Feisty. and playful. share the same origins: they were developed to unearth foxes gone to ground during hunting. the Cardigan and the Pembroke Welsh. lively. which may cause control problems on walks. 029 Choosing a dog Pembroke Welsh Corgi Fox Terrier Size 15–18 lb (7–8 kg). Both breeds were developed in Wales to herd livestock. 14–16 in (36–41 cm) Character Enthusiastic. with high levels of energy. active. 13–16 in (33–40 cm) Character Sociable. Good socialization will overcome the dogs’ natural reserve. independent. originally created for hunting hares and rabbits. and ensure that defensive nipping at heels does not become a problem.Corgi Size 24–37 lb (11–17 kg). and owners need to be prepared to win challenges and set guidelines. Being playful and eager. energetic Exercise High Grooming Minimal Of the two Corgi breeds. the latter is more common due to its connection with the British Royal Family.

it was originally used to aid hunters on rough shoots. English Cockers went to America with the early settlers. this breed was formed from a mixture of English Setters and Pointers. 19–20 in (47–50 cm) Character Intelligent. Brittanys are clever and quick to learn. combined with their fast speed. These sight hounds have a strong desire to chase. Relatively small in size and with a happy disposition. being small enough to flush the birds from their hiding places. They are very affectionate and biddable. makes them difficult to control on walks. active.5 kg).Whippet Size 28–30 lb (12. This tendency. dense coat High-set ears. English Cocker Spaniel Feathered chest . They need owners who can give them the opportunity to use up their considerable energy as well as providing training and leadership. The smallest of the hunt-point-retrieve breeds. where the breed was developed into the American Cocker. and are happy to work at any task required.5–13. for hunting rabbits and small game. active. lean muzzle Developed in the Brittany region of northwest France in the 19th century. silky ears There are two breeds of Cocker Spaniel. 17–20 in (43–50 cm) Character Gentle. Muscular hind legs Long. rounded at tip Cocker Spaniel Size 29–33 lb (13–15 kg). English and American (not shown). keen Exercise High Grooming High 030 The right dog for you Whippets were created in the mid-19th century from Greyhounds and terriers. together with local spaniels. Whippets need protection in cold weather because of their thin coats. These dogs can be willful. Cocker Spaniels were originally bred in England to hunt woodcock. 15–16 in (38–41 cm) Character Biddable. Soft. mediumlength coat Ready to go Cocker Spaniels are full of life. Fine. At home they are calm and affectionate. calm. affectionate Exercise Moderate Grooming Moderate Brittany Size 29–33 lb (13–15 kg). and need owners who are able to channel their considerable energy into useful work. the Cocker Spaniel has been one of the most popular breeds for many years. Brittanys make good companions for lively families. affectionate Exercise High Grooming Regular brushing. so owners need to set boundaries for good behavior early on. especially the ears Long.

and it is unusual to find one with a bad temperament. enthusiastic Exercise Very high Grooming Moderate Springer Spaniels were developed from Spanish Spaniels in the 19th century to flush out or “spring” game birds. When these sports were outlawed. The fashion to exaggerate the wrinkles makes for appealing puppies. these natural clowns show great affection towards their owners. Springers are easily trained. loyal Exercise Moderate Grooming Time is needed to care for deep skin folds Bull Terrier Size 53–62 lb (24–28 kg). loyal Exercise Minimal Grooming Minimal Exaggerated skin folds Bulldogs were bred in the 17th century for bull.Springer Spaniel Size 49–53 lb (22–24 kg). Bull Terriers were created in the 19th century. 18–20 in (46–51 cm) Character Aloof. loyal Exercise Moderate to high Grooming Minimal Originating from China and sharing a common ancestor with the Chow Chow. taking direction readily and accepting whatever role they are given. As a result. and owners need to be careful to remain in control. active families who have time for long walks. 031 Feathering on legs Choosing a dog Shar Pei Size 35–44 lb (16–20 kg). courageous. breathing is compromised in Bulldogs and they suffer heat stress. Bull terriers suit busy. Modern Bull Terriers come in a variety of colors. . Tug games are their favorites. Silky coat Willing worker Springers are tireless and always ready for more. their energy levels are higher than many people can cope with. These features have been exaggerated over the years. active families who can give them plenty of stimulation. and cannot exercise much. and return them to the handler once shot. They make good pets for busy.and bear-baiting. 19–20 in (48–51 cm) Character Energetic. 21–22 in (53–56 cm) Character Feisty. including guarding. lots of games. pug genes were introduced to produce a shorter. The wide head means that they are unable to be born naturally. While they may seem like the perfect dog. squarer dog with a squashed face. They do best in a busy home where there is lots of excitement and interest for them. reserved. Bull terriers are energetic but prefer to play rather than run. persistent. and fun. They are friendly and sociable. when Bulldogs were crossed with English White Terriers to produce a white “Gentleman’s Companion”. Known for their friendliness. snore. Bulldog Size 51–55 lb (23–25 kg). and hunting. Shar Peis need good socialization as puppies. but it can result in infected skin folds and cause eyelashes to turn in against the eye—a painful condition requiring surgery. 12–14 in (30–36 cm) Character Sociable. playful. the Shar Pei was bred for a variety of uses. Owners need time for long walks and games. herding.

and many people opt for a larger breed. Border Collies are quick to learn and willing to take instruction. Border Collies were bred in the early 20th century for sheepdog work on the English and Scottish borders. cats. Larger breeds usually make far more demanding pets than smaller dogs. They also offer a powerful deterrent to burglars and muggers. so these dogs need to be taught not to pull from a very early age. and general maintenance. Holding on to a Basset Hound that wants to run takes a lot of strength. They are often faster and more energetic than small dogs—traits that are appreciated by owners who enjoy dog sports such as agility. both inside the house and outside. there are many benefits from keeping a big dog. and a well-trained large dog looks very impressive. or have other active pursuits in which their dog can participate. Low but large The Basset Hound is a big dog with short legs. and they can help your children to feel safer. Border Collie Height 31–49 lb (14–22 kg). A good demonstration of sheep herding often convinces people that these dogs have an innate capacity to understand humans. Many large dogs are easier to train than their smaller cousins. and they establish close bonds with their owners. 032 The right dog for you That said. in reality. and have safe areas where they can run freely as adults. They need to be taught a good recall as puppies. playing. However. but they are also likely to result in considerably higher bills. they need training just like other dogs. They not only require you to devote more time and energy to them. Lots of early socialization will ensure that their reactivity does not lead to noise phobias or fear-related problems. reactive. Selective breeding has enhanced their desire to chase.Large dogs Owners of large dogs need lots of spare time and energy for exercising. 18–21 in (46–54 cm) Character Intelligent. If they are to be kept as a pet. large dogs won’t get under your feet without you seeing them. livestock. close-bonding Exercise Very high Grooming Moderate Herding Border Collies are still popular as sheepdogs and excess working dogs often find their way into pet homes. these instincts need to be channeled into games with toys to prevent them from chasing after joggers. grooming. and they will quickly learn to herd and chase whatever moves around them. Unlike small breeds. Born to run Dalmatians were bred to run. . Ample room is needed. and cars. as well as areas for long walks off-leash.

Long. smooth. loyal. 20–22 in (50–56 cm) Character Playful. low-set ears 033 Choosing a dog Tough. Bearded Collies were used for sheep and cattle herding. deep chest Muscular thighs Basset Hounds were bred for hunting rabbits by scent. active. relaxed. this is a Thick. fine coat Almost unknown in Australia. active home is a must for Siberians. independent Exercise Very high Grooming Extensive daily grooming needed Siberian Huskies were once essential to the Chuckchi people of Siberia. cushioned pads Bearded Collie Height 40–66 lb (18–30 kg). are well Rough Collies thrive in quiet homes with feathered gentle. as Forelegs their timid nature readily leads to fears. active Exercise Very high Grooming Moderate Weather-resistant. As a result. intelligent. 20–24 in (51–60 cm) Character Active. independent Exercise High Grooming Minimal Strong. dense. 20–24 in (50–60 cm) Character Sensitive. gentle Exercise Moderate Grooming Extensive daily grooming Abundant.Siberian Husky Size 35–60 lb (16–27. . sensitive Exercise Very high Grooming Extensive daily grooming needed Australian Shepherd Height 35–70 lb (16–32 kg). thoughtful owners. These dogs have a strong work ethic and need plenty of stimulation and activity. Long. They are easily distracted by animal trails. and may be difficult to recall from a scent. so owners need to channel the abundant energy of these fun-loving dogs into play-chases with toys. Rough Collie Height 40–66 lb (18–30 kg). They are sensitive and need good early socialization. strong-willed. Careful socialization is needed to develop a relaxed adult. The predatory nature of Siberians means that they cannot be let off-leash near livestock and other animals. whose culture was based around being able to travel long distances by dog-sled. and they need considerable daily exercise. medium-length coat Bred in the 16th century from a mixture of the Polish Lowland Sheepdogs and local Collies in Scotland. Basset Hound Size 40–60 lb (18–27 kg).5 kg). today’s Rough Collies are intelligent and learn quickly. Although still interested in chasing and play. A lively. bushy tail breed for serious enthusiasts who can run the dogs across country in carts or on bikes. While this causes control problems on walks. shiny coat Rough Collies were bred to herd sheep in Scotland. These dogs have the stamina to run all day. they are popular pets due to their happy disposition and sociable nature. Modern Bearded Collies retain a strong desire to chase and herd. sociable. the Australian Shepherd Dog was developed on ranches in the western US in the 19th and 20th centuries from a variety of sheepdogs. They also need owners with a will strong enough to match their own. 13–15 in (33–38 cm) Character Sweet-natured. 18–23 in (46–58 cm) Character Intelligent.

and spotted coat Tail curves upward slightly Compact feet . Quick to learn. and owners need to provide plenty of stimulation and exercise. Bred to run with carriages in England and with fire engines in the US. playful Exercise Very high Grooming Minimal Dalmatian Size 50–55 lb (22. 20–24 in (50–61 cm) Character Independent.5 kg). good-natured. 22–24 in (56–61 cm) Character Intelligent. Dalmatians are generally easy-going. and also to act as guard dogs. England. especially around other dogs. sociable Exercise Very high Grooming Minimal German Short-haired Pointers were created in Germany in the 19th century from Spanish and English Pointers. Short. being naturally playful. and may become boisterous if denied the opportunity to exercise. These excellent. which kept the dog warm in cold water during retrieves. its boundless energy is easily diverted into games with toys. willing to please. Best suited to owners who have experience and a strong character. energetic. Steady nature Airedales are loyal to owners and make good family dogs if they are well trained and socialized as puppies.5–25 kg). and later developed by the French. Airedales are not easy to train or to handle when in difficult situations. outgoing. pointing. with plenty of stamina. The German Short-haired Pointer is agile and active. parallel forelegs Airedales were developed in the 19th century in Yorkshire. over 15 in (38 cm) Character Intelligent. courageous. These dogs are good-natured. High-set tail Hard.5–32 kg). glossy. wiry coat Straight forelegs German Short-haired Pointer Size 44–66 lb (20–30 kg). Croatia. mixed with Foxhounds and other good scenting dogs. to hunt otters and badgers. dense. and easy to train. Since they have the hunting instincts of a terrier. Fortunately. They are playful and good with children. Long hair covering ears 034 The right dog for you Straight. Standards benefit from active owners. loyal Exercise Moderate Grooming Requires periodic stripping of dead coat First bred in Germany in the 15th century to help on duck hunts. they should not be trusted with unfamiliar cats or other small pets. The curly coat. affectionate. this is the largest of the Poodles. 24–26 in (60–65 cm) Character Sociable. all-purpose gun dogs are capable of hunting. active Exercise High to very high Grooming Needs daily grooming and regular clipping Airedale Terrier Size 44–50 lb (20–22. This ancient breed is thought to have originated in Dalmatia.Standard Poodle Size 45–70 lb (20. and playful. does not shed and needs a lot of care. but may sometimes be willful and obstinate. and retrieving. Modern day Airedale Terriers are protective and need plenty of socialization to be friendly. it is a natural athlete.

wild boar. The name Boxer comes from their tendency to “box” with their front paws during play. As with all dogs. Strong-willed owners who use positive training methods will get the best out of this engaging breed. Boxers are intelligent and relatively easy to train. which they may find easier than play-biting due to their flattened faces and undershot bites. They need plenty to do. . Because of their flattened face and undershot jaw—characteristics selected for in order to give them a strong biting grip—Boxers can be prone to dribbling and snoring. rules for games must be taught to both parties to avoid play getting out of hand. straight forelegs On guard Boxers can be distrustful of strangers. smooth hair covering extensive deep chest Strong. holding on until hunters arrived. 21–25 in (53–63 cm) Character Exuberant. and are best-suited to active families who want to include their dog in all aspects of their busy lives. implemented early in life so that their exuberance and strong character are kept within bounds. Usually.Boxer Size 55–70 lb (25–32 kg). who help to use up its considerable energy reserves and provide the lively. 035 Choosing a dog Undershot jaw Short. They were bred to chase and seize prey. Not surprisingly. This characteristic can be useful when there is a real threat to the safety of the family. high-spirited interaction that really suits this breed. and are a consistently popular dog around the world for this reason. Early socialization is essential for Boxers. shiny. especially with other dogs. and are easily aroused by intruders. playful. being playful and fun-loving with children. but they can be sly and prone to disobedience if rules for good behavior are not firmly established. and deer. careful training is needed to ensure that this trait does not get out of hand and result in unwanted aggression. friendly Exercise Very high Grooming Minimal Children’s playmate The Boxer’s readiness to play makes it an excellent companion for children. However. Boxers were developed in Germany from the English Bulldog and the Bullenbeisser. however. the modern descendants of these dogs are courageous and strong-minded enough to take on opponents if necessary. to ensure that they grow up friendly. Also essential are consistent guidelines for good behavior. a now-extinct breed used to hunt bears. Boxers are loveable clowns. Boxers make great family dogs.

is another invaluable task they are trained to perform by firefighters and police officers. this is easily done. They do best in homes where there is lots of activity and plenty to do. since they are always willing to please and very amenable to doing as you ask. guide dogs are trusted with guiding blind people around obstacles and waiting at roadsides until it is safe to cross. compact feet Guide dogs Purpose-bred to be steady. As pets. and easy to train. well-balanced. and they also help to stop food. and giving them independence. Labradors are playful and energetic. narcotics. their good temperament and biddability has also made them the breed of choice for assistance dogs. careful workers. Finding bodies. hazel eyes with gentle expression Thick tail is otter-like in shape Wide. sociable. Canada. and stealing from the trash can or kitchen countertops will need to be prevented and discouraged from the outset. Training takes several years but. Plenty of energy Labradors need lots of off-leash running to keep them fit. powerful chest with barrel-shaped rib cage Forelegs straight from shoulder down to ground Round. . and explosives from getting through customs. Labradors are one of the most popular breeds. Medium-sized. Often kept as pets or gun dogs. The powerful scent-detecting abilities of Labradors have made them useful in the fight against drugs. being versatile. as this is a breed that will eat far more than it needs. They adore food. where they were used by fishermen to retrieve and pull in nets from the water.Labrador Retriever Size 55–79 lb (25–36 kg). playful Exercise Very high Grooming Minimal 036 The right dog for you Labradors originated on the island of Newfoundland. especially when neutered. Weight control is also important. they were taken to England and developed as gun dogs to assist with duck shooting. alive or dead. Early socialization with other dogs and careful training with other animals and livestock will create a dog that is a joy to take out. 22–24 in (55–62 cm) Character Biddable. in the 15th century. Playful character A pet Labrador’s enthusiasm and energy need to be channeled into games with toys to prevent unacceptable behavior. In the 19th century. Their love of retrieving will mean that they get tired long before you do. the guide dogs give their handlers a new-found independence and freedom. Training a recall allows you to let them run freely and safely. Labradors need careful training when young to make sure that their natural enthusiasm does not get them into trouble. helping people with disabilities to perform everyday tasks more easily. Fortunately. once complete.

Hovawart
Size 55–90 lb (25–41 kg), 23–28 in (58–70 cm) Character Intelligent, loyal, protective Exercise Very high Grooming Moderate

Belgian Shepherd
Size 61–63 lb (27.5–28.5 kg), 22–26 in (56–66 cm) Character Reactive, intelligent, protective Exercise Very high Grooming Depends on variety

Hovawart means “Guardian of Property” in German, which gives a clue to the origins of these clever dogs. As well as guarding, this ancient breed was used to herd and help with livestock. Hovawarts are good at protecting the family from intruders, but careful socialization and training is needed to ensure that they are tolerant of strangers. Hovawarts learn readily, and are loving and loyal to their owners.

The different varieties of Belgian Shepherd are named after the areas from which they came. They are all of a similar type, and were bred to herd sheep and guard farms. These very sensitive dogs need lots of early socialization and habituation to humans, animals, and every day life. They are easy to train, loyal, and devoted to their owners. Belgian Shepherds do well with thoughtful owners who are good leaders, and who can provide plenty of activity.

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Choosing a dog

Deep chest

German Wire-haired Pointer
Height 60–70 lb (27–32 kg), 24–27 in (61–68 cm) Character Biddable, energetic, playful Exercise Very high Grooming Minimal

Forelegs held close to body

Malinois

Bred in Germany from the German Pointer and a variety of other breeds, the Wire-haired Pointer was developed as a versatile, rugged gun dog. More wary of strangers than their short-haired cousins, they need careful early socialization. That said, they are affectionate towards their owners, willing to please, and able to learn tasks with ease.

Tervueren Prominent chest with prolonged sternum Harsh, flat outercoat Straight forelegs

Groenendael High-set, stiff ears Long, bushy tail

The same breed? In their home country of Belgium, these four varieties are considered one breed. Other countries have registered them as four separate breeds. In reality, they are so closely related that puppies with all four different types of coat can be found in the same litter.

Laekenois

Golden Retriever
Size 60–79 lb (27–36 kg), 20–24 in (51–61 cm) Character Sociable, playful, kind Exercise High Grooming Daily grooming required

The Golden Retriever was first bred in the 19th century from a variety of sporting dogs to produce a robust, powerful gun dog with a gentle and biddable nature. Today, its good temperament is the dog’s most important feature, which explains its enduring popularity as a family pet. Golden Retrievers are playful and energetic, but not so active that they

require round-the-clock activity. Happy to sleep and rest at home, they have bags of energy outside and plenty of stamina to work or play all day. Owners of Golden Retrievers will need lots of time for dog-centered activities, games, and fun. Being cheerful and obliging, Golden Retrievers make good companions for

children, provided that the dogs are socialized with them from an early age and taught good manners. Ever willing to undertake tasks and easy to train, Golden Retrievers make ideal working dogs. They are regularly used in detection and therapy work, and as assistance dogs such as guide dogs.

Darkpigmented lips

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The right dog for you

Bringing back
A well-bred Golden Retriever can easily be taught to fetch. Take care to obtain puppies from biddable parents, since some of show strains are too possessive. Early training and plenty of play will ensure that your dog returns the objects you throw, so that he does the running rather than you. Plenty of energy Golden Retrievers have boundless energy for running, walks, and dog sports. They suit busy homes where they can be included in all aspects of family life.
Strong hindquarters

Ears set level with eyes

Wavy coat; may also be flat

Well-feathered tail

Flat-coated Retriever
Height 55–79 lb (25–36 kg), 22–24 in (56–61 cm) Character Gentle, affectionate, outgoing Exercise High Grooming Minimal

Dense, shiny, fine coat Short, flat tail is moderately feathered

Originating in England in the mid-19th century, the Flat-coated Retriever was bred as a general-purpose gun dog. Its gentle, playful, attentive nature makes it an ideal family pet. Flat-coated Retrievers are eager to learn and always ready to retrieve. Their activity levels are high, and they need plenty to do to use up surplus energy, but they are not clumsy or over-boisterous. Flat-coated Retrievers are poor guard dogs, since they are happy to welcome anyone. This makes them ideal for novice and sociable owners. Willing and able to please, Flatcoats make happy workers and loving companions.

Strong, straight legs are well feathered with long hair

German Shepherd Dog
Size 62–97 lb (28–44 kg), 22–26 in (55–66 cm) Character Intelligent, protective, loyal Exercise Very high Grooming Daily, especially for long-coated varieties

This popular breed was created in Germany in the late 19th century to herd sheep and protect property. At the end of World War I, it became known as the Alsatian in the UK, the name change reflecting the anti-German feeling in the country at the time. Only 50 years later did the breed regain its correct name, and these dogs are sometimes still referred to as Alsatians by mistake. German Shepherds are quick, clever learners, and their intelligence is highly valued by those who work them. As well as carrying out police-dog work, they often act as guards for

the military and private security companies. They are also used for search-and-rescue work, and in scentdetection roles to locate hidden narcotics, explosives, and even human remains. German Shepherds make good pets for owners who like to train and play, and they are good with children. Extremely loyal, they will protect both family and property from any perceived threat. Early socialization will ensure that these dogs are well adjusted and do not become fearful or unnecessarily aggressive. New owners should research their puppy’s origins to check that it is

from stock with a good temperament. Interbreeding for show success has resulted in structural weaknesses and hip dysplasia. Scrutinize all documentation on testing for inherited diseases before purchasing. These dogs form close bonds with their owners, and are happiest with people who provide strong leadership together with lots of fun and friendship. Feed their strong desire to work, such as by training them to help out with everyday chores. This will give them a purpose and strengthen your shared relationship.
Muzzle is straight and strong, with firm lips

Hard, straight, outer coat with dense undercoat

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Choosing a dog

Tail is densely feathered with long hair

Chest is deep, with long, well-formed ribs

Police dogs
German Shepherds are highly valued by police forces worldwide. Their reactivity and quick arousal assists with detaining criminals, and their natural protectiveness helps to keep the handler safe. Their desire to chase makes them excellent at catching running criminals, and they are strong enough to stop and detain a person until the handler can catch up. Yet with the right socialization and removed from a conflict situation they can also be peaceful and pleasant, which is important for public relations. Their powerful scent-detection abilities allow them to track suspects and also lost persons, as well as to find items that may be used as evidence.

Coping with the chasing instinct Playful and energetic, German Shepherd Dogs love to chase. Channel this strong desire into games with toys, especially if your puppy is growing up with young children. Otherwise, inappropriate chase games can become a bad habit, which will be difficult to break later.

Rhodesian Ridgeback
Height 65–85 lb (29.5–38.5 kg), 24–27 in (60–69 cm) Character Independent, discerning, protective Exercise High Grooming Minimal Broad, flat skull

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The right dog for you

Ridgebacks were first bred in South Africa in the late 19th century, and found great success as hunting dogs in Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia). Their role was to chase lions in packs, cornering the quarry until the hunters could dispatch it. Like their ancestors, modern Ridgebacks love to chase. This can lead to control problems on walks, and Ridgebacks quickly learn to chase inappropriately, being fond of fast-moving objects and animals. These dogs are affectionate and loyal to owners, and very good with children in the family. They need plenty of early socialization with strangers and other dogs. They love to eat, so food stealing is high on Well-arched toes their list of priorities.

Muscular neck

Short, dense, sleek coat

The ridge This breed’s unique feature is the ridge of hair running the wrong way down the back. Tapered near the tail, it ends in two whorls over the shoulders.

Dobermann
Height 66–88 lb (30–40 kg), 24–28 in (60–70 cm) Character Intelligent, alert, protective Exercise High Grooming Minimal

Giant Schnauzer
Size 70–77 lb (32–35 kg), 24–28 in (60–70 cm) Character Intelligent, loyal, protective Exercise High Grooming Daily grooming, regular stripping/clipping

The Dobermann was created in the late 19th century by Louis Dobermann, a German tax collector who needed a dog for protection. Dobermanns retain their protective nature, but are easily trained and controllable if they have strongwilled owners. This highly intelligent breed needs plenty to do to use up its considerable energies.

Lean neck

Wellproportioned chest

Glossy black and tan coat

The Giant Schnauzer was developed from the Standard Schnauzer in the 19th century for cattle herding and droving, and also for guarding. These large, impressive black dogs have been used by the police and military to keep order. As pets, Giant Schnauzers are playful, good-natured, and protective. Their beard collects dribble and needs frequent washing to keep it sweet-smelling.

Long, coarse beard

Robust, slanting upper thighs

Weimaraner
Size 70–86 lb (32–39 kg), 22–27 in (56–69 cm) Character Energetic, exuberant, playful Exercise Very high Grooming Minimal

Weimaraners were developed in Germany as a general-purpose gundog in the early 19th century. They are still used as gundogs today, but they are also popular as pets. These fun-loving, extrovert dogs need active families who can include them in all aspects of daily life. Their vast reserves of energy and stamina need channeling into useful work or games with toys. Regular free running and daily off-leash exercise are essential. Strong behavioral guidelines should be set early on; fortunately, Weimaraners are easy to train. Good socialization will ensure that they are friendly to strangers and other animals.

Long-haired Weimaraner

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Choosing a dog
Firm, compact feet

Strong, sleek, short coat Strong, straight forelegs

Akita
Height 77–110 lb (35–50 kg), 24–28 in (60–70 cm) Character Aloof, protective, independent Exercise High Grooming Extensive daily grooming required

Dogue de Bordeaux
Height 79–99 lb (36–45 kg), 23–27 in (58–69 cm) Character Courageous, loyal, protective Exercise High Grooming Minimal

The Akita is an imposing dog, developed for bear hunting and Hard coat with fine dog fighting in the 17th century. undercoat Bred to show little emotion, it is difficult to know what they are thinking, and hence predict what they may do next. They need an experienced owner who can handle their strong character and earn enough Stout, respect to be listened to. Akitas can be straight tail difficult with other animals and need careful socialization. Clean, quiet, and calm, they make a loving, loyal guard for their families.

This breed probably originated in France’s Bordeaux region as a dog for fighting bulls, bears, and other dogs in pits. Subsequently mellowed by selective breeding, the Dogue de Bordeaux today has a less aggressive nature. Nevertheless, it still requires determined owners and early socialization, especially with other dogs. Due to the shape of its jaw and lips, this dog will snore and drool copiously.

Powerful breed Akitas are large and powerful. They do not have much interest in play after puppyhood and their independence makes them harder to train. Safe, enclosed areas away from other dogs and animals are needed for exercising.

Powerful chest

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As well as lots of play and activity.Active dog Weimaraners have high energy levels and need plenty of exercise to feel content. . they need safe. especially when they are young. open areas where they can run free.

insure. 26–31 in (65–80 cm) Character Calm. extra-large dogs do not usually need as much exercise as some of their smaller. alert Exercise High Grooming Minimal Coarse. but they make great demands on time and money. Water dog Newfoundlands are used for rescue at sea. Germany. long. flat black coat with tan markings Rough. Though large. Rottweilers are quick to learn. They also need a large yard so they can get up to speed and slow down again before reaching the fence. and feed these dogs. they need good socialization as puppies. sociable Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming required Long muzzle with distinctive markings First bred by the mayor of Leonberg. Bernese Mountain Dogs are powerful when pulling.Extra-large dogs Outsize dogs are for experienced. loyal. These breeds are impressive statements. Transport can be a problem with outsize breeds. They need strongwilled. and a few other breeds. and their great strength enables them to pull struggling people to the shore. Giant size If not well socialized or properly trained. so plenty of early leash training is necessary to gain control. 044 The right dog for you Outsize dogs need a lot of house room. more agile cousins. and acted as guard dogs. Leonberger Height 75–110 lb (34–50 kg). Abundant. Owners of extra-large dogs need dedication. in the 19th century by crossing Saint Bernards. affectionate Exercise High Grooming Daily grooming required Bernese Mountain Dog Height 88–97 lb (40–44 kg). an extra-large dog such as the Great Dane can pose a significant physical risk to others. Newfoundlands. they are gentle around familiar children. and quickly get tired from the effort of moving such a large frame. protective. and often necessitates the purchase of an extra-large car. Leonbergers became popular as family guard dogs and companions. Naturally protective. and they will need more time for general care and maintenance. shaggy coat Rottweilers were bred in Germany to drive cattle and for protection. 23–27 in (58–69 cm) Character Protective. 23–28 in (58–70 cm) Character Calm. where they pulled carts. glossy coat Rottweiler Height 90–110 lb (41–50 kg). protective. compact feet . It will definitely be more expensive to kennel. drove cattle. and may get in the way or feel too restricted in a small home. Sadly. and self-assured. experienced owners to keep their protective instincts in check. They prefer to take things easy. committed owners who can cope with a dog that often weighs more than they do. Strong forelegs with round. these giants tend to be more short-lived than smaller breeds. These dogs were originally bred to work on Swiss farms. Their large size keeps them warm in cold water. Surprisingly.

Bred in the 17th century by the monks at the Hospice of St. often seek out water to cool Finding a place where they themselves down. cool. It is good-natured and sociable. this ancient breed was originally developed to hunt wild boar. Deep-set eyes Thick. this dog helped to rescue travelers stuck in snow. Saint Bernards are gentle giants. They need to can swim regularly will keep pant a lot to lose excess heat. one of the tallest of all breeds. firm lips Wide. together with thorough training by strong-willed owners. and plenty of early socialization. deep chest Well-spaced. Today’s Great Dane is a gentle giant.Bull Mastiff Size 90–130 lb (41–59 kg). Often too hot in temperate climates. loyal Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming required This dog was developed in Newfoundland. independent. 31–36 in (79–92 cm) Character Playful. these powerful dogs retain their protective nature. 25–27 in (64–69 cm) Character Courageous. massive Short. 26–28 in (66–71 cm) Character Calm. and Newfoundlands preferable to long marathons. because the desire to chase other animals is strong. Broad. affectionate Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal By crossing English Bulldogs and English Mastiffs. but care is needed when off-leash. Despite this. protective. powerful legs Very deep chest 045 Short. They have a gentle. and content. Great Danes need large areas where they can exercise freely. so short walks are climates. is necessary to rein in these instincts. loyal Exercise Moderate Grooming Minimal Great Dane Height 110–176 lb (50–80 kg). Very muscular neck . Today. dense coat Newfoundland Height 110–150 lb (50–68 kg). their panting and excessive dribbling can be a problem. 24–28 in (61–71 cm) Character Gentle. them fit. Bull Mastiffs are affectionate with familiar children. Newfoundlands overheat The thick coat can cause rapidly if they exercise too problems in more temperate much. sociable. Canada. to help Keeping cool fishermen haul nets and carts. Bernard in Switzerland. good-natured and devoted to their owners. Fast runners Surprisingly fast. sociable. English gamekeepers in the 19th century developed the Bull Mastiff to help them catch poachers. Although its exact origins are unclear. and have a strong tendency to drool. Its large size reflected the need to stay warm when working for hours in low temperatures. affectionate Exercise Moderate Grooming Daily grooming required Saint Bernard Height 110–201 lb (50–91 kg). Good socialization and training is needed when young. square sociable temperament and head muzzle make good family dogs.

Crossbreeds are usually the result of an accidental mating between two pedigree dogs. and where it is unlikely they will be neutered. what you see is what you get. but they can be Inherited traits The desire to chase and play with toys is an inherited trait. Due to the mixture of genes. and you have to wait until they mature to see how puppies will turn out and how big they will grow. If choosing an adult. Crossbreeds are usually given a hybrid of the two breed names. . mongrels are usually neutered. How the dog is raised will affect which behavior traits are developed. because their genes come from parents that are less likely to be related. Labradoodles To breed assistance dogs that do not shed their coat or trigger people’s allergies. and are quickly collected by dog-control officers. Find out what character traits the dog has before buying. They are less common in more heavily populated countries where stray dogs are not allowed. while crossbreeds are a mixture of two pedigree dogs. Mongrel dogs are a mixture of different breeds. Where breeding is taken very seriously. for example. Hybrid vigor Many mongrels and crossbreeds are healthier than pedigrees. Each dog is different from the next. 046 The right dog for you a deliberate cross to try to produce a dog with a particular temperament or coat type. and demand for them is increasing. Labradors have been crossed with Poodles to produce Labradoodles. a cross between a cocker spaniel and a poodle would be called a Cockerpoo. These dogs are popular as pets too. Mongrels are common in countries where dogs are allowed the freedom to roam.Mongrels and crossbreeds Mongrels and crossbreeds are unique in physical form and temperament. various physical forms and types of coat occur. Canine combinations You can usually guess at least one of the parents of a mongrel or crossbreed from the clues given by their temperament and body shape.

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Building bonds 2 Dog talk What your dog needs Age-related issues .

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This section will help you to understand how dogs think. It also explains how to earn your dog’s respect and develop a happy. also for well-being. and appreciate how the world looks from their perspective.Dog talk Dogs are not humans in furry skins. and how we can communicate with them using their language. Discover how dogs “talk” to each other. trusting relationship that will provide the Helping children to build a mutually framework for creating a welltrusting relationship with their dog is for their behaved. well-trained animal. and their limitations compared with our own sophisticated abilities to process thoughts. GOOD RELATIONSHIP . we need to be aware of the differences between us. but a different species from us. If we are to be good dog owners. and to us. andbeneficialthe dog’s development.

their behavior in many situations is so similar to ours that it is reasonable to assume that this is the case. including happiness when they are having fun. Warm welcome Dogs share our social behavior of greeting returning loved ones. Lacking logic A dog will look at the floor repeatedly when seeing a treat drop. it is easy to make the mistake of treating them like small children and expecting them to behave accordingly. and they work hard to maintain relationships. Although we cannot be certain they feel the same way as us.188–9). they greet returning members of their pack enthusiastically. Having a dog to welcome you home from a hard day’s work is one of the joys of dog ownership. there are clear parallels with the ways in which humans behave with their own families. However. because they often seem so human. Infectious mood An owner’s moods are often reflected in their dog—a happy owner will have a happy dog. and resentment if they are told off continuously. In a dog’s social life. . loneliness when they are separated from their pack. they mourn when they lose loved ones. make sure he does not learn to jump up at you (pp. fear when they feel threatened. It is because of these shared similarities in social ability and emotional richness that we invite dogs into our homes and they make very successful pets. dogs have a much less sophisticated brain than humans. and because their ancestors evolved to survive in a different way. However. In reality. 052 Building bonds Shared emotions Dogs also seem to share many human emotions. even though there is a table in the way. Knowing how dogs think helps us to understand them and have reasonable expectations of what they can achieve. Social relationships Dogs’ social patterns are extremely similar to our own—for example.How dogs think Dogs are highly social. since we cannot ask them. but have less sophisticated thought and reasoning abilities than humans. their motivations are not the same as ours.

thought than us. Rather than enabling language. In contrast. They don’t fake emotions for a higher purpose. and if they seem pleased to see you. it is relatively smaller and lacks the neocortex. a dog’s brain houses large sensory areas. Dogs have a good memory. language. it is because they genuinely feel that way. they are unable to process them in a human way. as the human brain does. a human would realize that it is easier to open the gate in order to pick up the ball. our moods and facial expressions. Helping our dogs out when they do not understand what we require of them is vital. they do not hold grudges or plot their revenge. a dog’s first reaction is to try to pull the ball through the fence. and no scientific experiments have been done on this. but their reasoning capacity is quite limited when compared with ours. Thus many owners claim their dogs understand them perfectly and know exactly what they are thinking. What do dogs feel? Do dogs feel guilt. as is giving them the benefit of the doubt in those instances when we are not sure if they are being stubborn or just do not know what they are supposed to do. Thus dogs are not small people in furry skins—they have a much smaller capacity for reasoning and Slow to reason In this situation. which is the part of our brain that is responsible for reasoning. but they find it really difficult to learn words. Knowing this can help us to have more realistic expectations of their abilities and not ask too much when trying to train them and get them to cooperate with us. and evolved to help their wolf ancestors to hunt successfully. there is no way of asking them. Therefore. remorse. “Dogs are not small people in furry skins— they have a much smaller capacity for reasoning and thought than we do. and all the high-level functions that are unique to humans. It is this inability to show false emotion that makes them so appealing in a modern world filled with deception. dogs can often tell when their owners are about to get up even before they consciously decide to move. which detect information about the world around them. However. or hatred? Unfortunately. in addition to a different way of seeing the world.” 053 Dog talk Different brains Although the dog’s brain is similar to that of a human. it is safe to assume that although they do possess basic emotions.Acute senses Using their very keen senses. . Dogs are acutely aware of human movements and body language.

and an extra organ in the roof of the mouth. Dogs also have something called a vomeronasal organ in the roof of their mouths. but dogs smell it. or a potential mate. their age. Here. a new object. and how long ago they passed by. sexual status.” Super scenter A dog’s anatomy is designed for maximum scent detection and processing. with millions of cells in the nasal cavities. whether it is a smell on the grass. . If you watch someone with a dog entering an unfamiliar room. the owner will look around to gain clues as to what goes on in there and what may happen in the future. Understanding how they perceive their surroundings allows us to train them in a way they find easy to comprehend. frontal sinus nasal epithelium collects scent molecules and sends messages to the brain. Scent Dogs live in a world of scent. The dog. a large area of the brain dedicated to scent. Dogs are intensely interested in sniffing. or the head or rear end of another dog. This is possible because they have an extraordinarily large epithelium (membrane) inside the nose. but dogs smell it. We see the world. however. foe. Sniffing a clump of grass can tell them which other dogs inhabit the area. state of health. This allows them to taste and smell scents that they find soft palate windpipe tongue vomeronasal organ Crime fighters Humans have long capitalized on dogs’ superior sense of smell.Canine senses: smell and sight Dogs experience the world in a very different way to humans. will put his nose to the ground and move around in order to gather similar information. a sniffer dog checks packages for illegal substances. which cerebal cortex Information collection This Basset Hound uses his nose to gather information about other dogs in the area. 054 Building bonds “We see the world. This is because they can detect scent on a level we can only imagine. while human beings inhabit a world of sight. the part of a dog’s brain that is responsible for scent detection is four times larger and more complex than in humans. finding out which could be friend. In addition.

drugs. dogs could detect human scent on a glass slide that had been lightly handled even when it was left outdoors for two weeks or indoors for nearly one month. 055 Dog talk Sight Dogs see less well than humans. and will often use their sense of smell to search for it instead. Bloodhounds have been known to follow it for 130 miles (210 km).1 part per billion. and they cannot see reds and greens.especially appealing. In some breeds—for example. dead bodies. The dog’s view Dogs can see some colors. This Lurcher scans the field for anything that could be chased or hunted. They can successfully detect odors at a concentration of 0. compared to five million in humans. due to a special structure in the eye called the tapetum lucidum. enhancing sight in low light levels. Dogs are also used to detect explosives. and it explains why dogs’ eyes “glow in the dark” when light hits them. such as hounds or gun dogs—we have accentuated this ability through selective breeding. the colors they can detect are limited to blues and yellows. . food. those that are required to do a job that involves tracking or scenting game. which is equivalent to the size of a postage stamp. Sight hounds Some dogs have been bred to hunt by sight. and they can do this better than any human invention. dogs cannot distinguish textures and detail as well as we do. The Bloodhound is probably the breed that is best at scent detection. but detect texture and detail less well. The human’s view Humans can see texture and detail well and have a much broader range of color vision than dogs do. particularly those that help them recognize mating partners. In scientific experiments. Their night vision is superior to ours and they detect movements easily. covering an area about the size of a handkerchief. This is why they find it difficult to see a red ball on green grass. Similarly. Amazing scent detection Researchers have estimated that dogs have nearly 220 million cells in their noses that detect scent. Although they can see in color. Dogs are also able to detect movement better than we can. They can detect movements easily and see well at long distances. and many breeds have better long-distance vision. and are able to follow tracks over 300 hours old. Dogs can track humans and animals using the trail of skin cells shed from the body and smells caused by disturbance of any vegetation. but they are better at seeing in the dark. Once on a trail. and cancer cells. This reflects light back into the dog’s eye.

It was advantageous for dogs that were bred to herd livestock to be able to hear well. so that they could respond to instructions shouted or whistled from some distance away. whereas we can only hear sounds in the range of 20–20. and it is not uncommon for herding dogs to develop noise phobias when exposed to loud noises.000 Hz.Hearing. whereas dogs have less than 2. many of the modern descendants of these dogs have extremely sensitive hearing. Sounds The sense of hearing is much better developed in dogs than in humans. they can hear higher frequencies of sound. In addition. and perspective As well as differences in their senses of smell and vision. so their sense . dogs have very different powers of hearing and taste to humans. This is why dogs respond to supposedly “silent” dog whistles. also gives them a very different outlook on the world. taste.000. which are only silent to us Sound of silence A “silent” dog whistle sounds like any other whistle to a dog. Their small height. relative to us.000 Hz. Sounds that we can only just hear can be detected by dogs from four times as far away. and they can hear noises at a much greater distance from the source than we can.000 taste buds in the mouth. For this reason. such as the ultrasonic squeaks made by small prey animals. The frequency range of a dog’s hearing is 40–60. such as fireworks. Tastes Humans have nearly 9. 056 Building bonds because they are beyond the frequency range of our hearing. but we do not hear it because our ears cannot detect noise at such a high frequency.

a huge hand coming down to give a pat on the head can seem very scary. Sometimes this “land of giants” will seem an intimidating place to them. From a dog’s perspective.” of taste is less sophisticated than ours. Not paws but jaws Dogs lack delicate fingers and opposable thumbs. . dogs see the world from a different perspective. This helps to explain why puppies pick things up with their mouths during exploration. Hands coming down from above may seem threatening to a small dog. get down on your hands and knees and you will see that it seems a very different place. A dog’s perspective Being smaller than us. Dog talk To dogs. find out about their world. Unlike human jaws. For puppies and small dogs. Even more surprising is the ability of some dogs to predict when their owners are coming home: they will go and wait by the door from the moment the owner sets off for home. and they lack the ability to move from side to side. We often overlook dogs as we hurry through crowded streets. For example. Threatening hand Always bear in mind how a dog sees you. dog jaws can only move up and down. manipulating objects has to be done with the mouth. 057 In a land of giants For puppies and small dogs. emitting exhaust gases at nose-height. Because they need to stand on their paws. there are many recorded incidences of dogs finding their way home over thousands of miles. The taste buds of these carnivores are designed to favor meat and fat. cars seem huge and lorries are like roaring monsters. especially if he is not sure of our intentions. This is equally true when we take them out in busy towns and cities. humans are as tall as a double-decker bus. Scent is more important than taste to dogs. humans must seem like giants. and bite and chew to Acquired taste Being true carnivores. To find out how life in our homes appears to them. Dogs have also been known to locate their owners even though they have moved to a place the dog has never visited.“For puppies and small dogs. rather than the sweet and salty foods that humans prefer. Sixth sense Some of the unusual abilities of dogs cause people to wonder if they have a “sixth” sense. dogs evolved to enjoy the taste of the raw meat and fat that covered the bones of their animal prey. It may be that dogs have sensory abilities of which we are not yet aware. but it is easy to imagine how hard it must be for them to weave their way through a forest of moving legs. humans must seem like giants.

they communicate using body postures and signals. To learn this body language. watch what dogs do when they meet. ”Go away!” This Weimaraner’s boisterous play is too much. Although they sometimes bark at each other. the Labrador flattens itself to the ground. and they are used by other dogs as a predictor of future behavior. most communication between dogs is non-vocal. . These changes. keeping still and closing his eyes in a clear signal of disengagement. To try to turn off the lively attention. 058 Building bonds “Changes in body position indicate moods and feelings. and you will soon be able to predict what will happen next. and body. indicate moods and feelings. Learning what dogs are saying to each other requires a careful study of how they hold their bodies.” ”Don’t stare” This English Setter is trying to get close to investigate by scent. though small. tail. but the firm gaze of the Golden Retriever causes the Setter to look politely away into the distance.Dog to dog Because dogs lack the brain structures to learn a verbal language. and involves changes in the positions of their ears. Different personalities behave in different ways.

The older dog doesn’t want to get involved. Although they are active. with energy to spare. Collecting scent from the rear end may be distasteful to us. which would be evident if it were a real fight. there is no sign of tension in their faces or stiffness in their bodies. . In desperation. the younger dog puts his front paws on the back of the older dog to try to provoke a response.Play fight These dogs know each other well and are playing. and their eyes are not fixated on each other. ”Please play!” The younger dog is lively and playful. Sporting activities Scent investigation The scent of others is an important source of information. but it tells dogs a lot about their new canine friends.

Nose lick Dogs lick their noses when they feel under pressure. because they have close human equivalents. Understanding these signals will enable us to react accordingly and help the dog out if necessary. and may be misinterpreted. . This dog yawns when the owner begins to stare at her. This dog leans away. as they have less control over what happens to them. Others are not so clear. Dogs constantly express themselves to us through their body postures. Owners should be aware of their dog’s sensitivities. 060 Building bonds Confidence A relaxed body and upward-curving tail signals confidence. just as they do with each other. Remember that dogs are far more vulnerable in the dog–human relationship than we are.Dog to human Dogs try to communicate with us using body signals. She shows it by her confident strut and the way she carries her tail. He feels overwhelmed by this. This young dog is self-assured. and make every effort to learn how to read his signals. so he tries to avoid the owner by turning his head away. and licks his nose when his collar is held. and it is usually a sign that the dog is anxious or worried. Yawning Yawning can be a way to ease tension. looks worried. and all is well in her world. Some signals are easy to recognize. Avoidance This dog is held captive and brought towards the owner’s face.

and looks up at her with a relaxed expression. He wags his tail with excitement.Pleased to see you This dog has a good relationship with his owner and is confident that her approach means no harm. Sporting activities . puts his ears down in greeting.

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or under pressure from their owners. and be a better owner. Learning how to read these signals helps you to understand your dog better.Nose lick Dogs lick their noses when they are feeling anxious or distressed. .

. When training them to respond to cues. 064 Building bonds Wave This owner gives a clear hand signal and her well-trained dog responds. and it is to these that they primarily respond. her well-trained dog sits—even though he cannot see any body cues or signals she may be giving. They observe us closely for any clue that we might be ready to do something interesting.Human to dog Dogs find it easier to understand our gestures and signals rather than our spoken words. eventually. her dog will eventually learn to respond to the voice cue alone. using gestures to help dogs understand what we want is more likely to succeed than speaking to them. as it is not natural for them to communicate vocally. If a voice cue is given just before the signal. Sit “Sit” is often the only voice cue that dogs learn. Dogs watch us rather than listen to us. and then put a voice cue in later. They will. When this owner gives the voice cue. but long before that. they will have learned the body gestures that accompany particular requests. For this reason. learn words if we repeat them often enough. it is quicker if you teach them hand signals first.

Body signals “Dogs watch us rather than listen to us. Although it may be obvious to us what we mean.Pointing With careful teaching. waiting for the next one to tell him what is going to happen or what is required of him. as it is not natural for them to communicate with words. and her trained dog responds happily. and looks worried. at first dogs have no idea and need to be patiently taught. What’s next? Positive training results in a dog that pays attention to your cues. Having a dog that understands our cues makes life much easier—and a lot more fun.” This owner sends an obvious “come here” message to her dog with her body language. This dog is not sure. dogs eventually understand that they need to go in the direction in which we are pointing. .

A special relationship with at least one member of their human family is essential to a dog’s well-being and good behavior. . however. and he will then respond to your requests willingly.A rewarding relationship A good relationship with your dog. is essential to harmony. However. trustworthy. If that relationship is strong and solid. so it is very important to be scrupulously fair in all of your dealings with them. the dog will be well-adjusted. and better equipped to behave in a way that is acceptable for everyone. as a result. they seek out and rely on their social connections. Essential elements Dogs are pack animals and. Working partnership Partners in a successful relationship help each other out. Mutual trust and respect will reduce your reliance on rewards when you ask your dog to comply with your wishes. Positive training methods will help to keep your relationship on track as they rely on making your dog want to do as you ask rather than forcing him 066 Building bonds Strong bond A good social relationship is essential to your dog’s wellbeing and will bring contentment and happiness to both of you. you need to work hard to be loving. To build this sort of relationship. more resilient to change or adversity. and to maximizing his potential in the many different aspects of your life together. All dogs have a strong sense of injustice. and kind. good behavior. which is based on love. Establishing trust The trust that develops during the formation of a good owner–dog relationship allows you to perform all maintenance tasks easily. trust. and respect. you have to work at it and put in time and effort.

Dogs need to be taught how to behave appropriately. and cared for. as you may pass this attitude on. each of you will find out about the other. as is keeping members of your pack safe and leading them out of danger when Respect Earning your dog’s respect is essential if he is to consider you a good leader and always do as you ask without question. 067 Dog talk Bad parenting Using only positive methods for training.” difficult situations arise. To be an effective leader. and your relationship becomes stronger. Because their ancestors once lived in packs. in turn. You will both learn what you are good at. willing friend and partner. As training continues. Leadership Humans have bred dogs selectively to be sociable and biddable. It can be difficult to train at times when you are angry or stressed. much like children. it is possible to force your will on your dog. and this. he may become withdrawn and depressed or exhibit unwanted attention-seeking behaviors. you will find that your dog will work harder for you and feel more closely bonded to you. This is the recipe for a good relationship. but. and building a relationship with your dog may be difficult if you were brought up by parents who were very negative towards you. you need to be kind and encouraging most of the time. which can be achieved by following the methods that are set out in this book. prevent damaging your relationship further by avoiding training sessions when you are feeling less positive. what makes you frustrated. A negative approach to training will only lead to resentment and fear. wanted. what pleases you. Regular training sessions. Of course. Spending time with him on a regular basis is essential to making him feel loved. will result in your dog becoming a well-trained. especially if they are interspersed with play. will enhance your relationship with your dog. . to comply. If you are too busy to give him the social care that he craves. but he will not regard you as a good leader if you do so—you are more likely to inspire fear. well-behaved. will bring the two of you closer together. when necessary. “Dogs benefit from a leader whom they can respect and follow. and how each of you can make the other happy. and boundaries of acceptable behavior need to be set and maintained. Taking the lead by making good decisions about what to do next is an essential leadership quality that your dog will recognize. and. they can become unruly and difficult without one. Although your dog will forgive the occasional slip.Positive training methods Positive training. You have to earn your dog’s respect through your actions and decisions in daily life. educating. As you train. you must also be tough and uncompromising. dogs benefit from having a leader that they can respect and follow.

Part of the family Children who grow up with a family dog are more likely to keep pet dogs as adults. providing they are carefully supervised to ensure that each behaves well with the other. and they can get along really well together if given the careful supervision needed to ensure good relationships. because you will see it reflected later. children learn quickly. Children also learn from what they observe. Children are full of vigor and fun. . which brings about a reciprocal Young trainer Children can make skilled and enthusiastic dog trainers given the right information. along with plenty of coaching and support. This makes children very good trainers—if they are shown the correct way to do it. and well-socialized dogs respond to this with excitement and energy. They will carefully watch what their parents do with the family dog and will copy this behavior. It is relatively easy to teach them how to behave around their dog in order to get the best from him and to develop a successful relationship. especially if their experience of dogs is happy and enjoyable. They are usually enthusiastic and excited. be extra careful what you do with your dog if the children are watching. Set a good example Dogs make an ideal pet for children. For this reason.Dogs and children Dogs and children share a sense of fun and a love of life. Fortunately. too. Leaving them alone together allows all sorts of bad behavior to flourish and unacceptable habits can quickly develop.

For this reason. and that both parties learn how to treat each other appropriately. Once the baby has arrived. Children will be readily accepted from a dog’s point of view if he met them and had pleasant experiences with them during early puppyhood (pp.182–3) is also a good idea so that you will be able to attend to the baby without interference. dogs can be scared of children. unsteady gait. Care needs to be taken until the baby has grown. and sometimes they can be intentionally mean if they have been badly treated themselves. It is essential to supervise these training sessions. children can be unintentionally cruel to dogs. move around. If a dog is going to bite. Safe play When playing. He cannot stop a toddler approaching and needs to learn to move to specially created “safe havens” out of the way. Success is important. Otherwise.Happy greeting Early socialization is essential if puppies are to grow up being friendly to and unafraid of children of all ages. let your dog know he is still a valued member of the household. Teaching your dog to go to his bed (pp. Even so. particularly toddlers. A dog is at risk of being fallen on or grabbed for support. who appear so different from adults. Dogs and babies Babies are usually readily accepted by dogs as new members of the family pack. excitement from the dog they are training. This puppy enjoys the social contact. Young puppies under 12 weeks of age need to meet children of all ages if they are to grow up friendly and unafraid. get used to the different smells associated with babies will help. Playing recordings of babies crying and letting the dog Toddlers Problems can occur for the family dog when babies start to crawl. toddlers can seem threatening. being ready to step in to help out if needed. With . 069 Dog talk New pack member Dogs usually welcome babies as new members of the family pack. and take their first steps. he is statistically more likely to bite young boys in a family.92–3). It is important to prepare your dog for the new arrival during the pregnancy. because children quickly get frustrated and impatient if what they try does not work. you can ensure that both your children and your dog enjoy the games. “Children can make very good trainers if they are shown the correct way to go about it. and pinching fingers. Be there By supervising play sessions. loud squeaks and cries. all play and interactions between children and the family dog should be supervised in order to avoid getting into a situation where the dog is forced to retaliate. it is wise to adjust a dog’s routine and social environment during the pregnancy to reflect conditions that will occur after the birth. their big eyes at dog eye level.” . and child and dog are used to each other.

Meeting other animals Adult dogs will try to be friendly with members of any species they have met during their critical socialization period. especially when they are around small. vulnerable pets. 070 Building bonds Predatory instincts As well as early socialization. Dogs should never be trusted completely because their hunting instincts are strong. Providing cats with safe places will allow them to get to know the dog more quickly. and so they retain many of the traits that are useful for hunting (pp. such as the rabbit shown here. it is vital that he meets them as early as possible. During these meetings. because meeting an aggressive animal can quickly cause a puppy to become fearful and aggressive in turn. Dogs are descended from wolves. Controlled encounter Take time to get your puppy accustomed to livestock. vulnerable pets. and any animals not encountered during puppyhood will be met with caution and alarm. especially if he is required to be relaxed and happy in their company.” Height advantage Cats feel safer if they have a higher “escape route”.18–9). dogs need continued supervision when in the presence of small animals so that excitement doesn’t escalate into predatory behavior. Natural chaser Care needs to be taken with small. This takes away the excitement of future encounters. If a puppy is going to live with or be in contact with other species. which is before they are 12 weeks of age. it is important that the puppy has pleasant encounters with other animals. such as chickens. Some breeds are more difficult than others in this respect. Care must be taken around small animals. As they age. “Dogs’ instincts are strong and should not be underestimated. they become less inclined to be sociable. . however. as dogs have strong inherited tendencies. in a controlled way.Dogs and other animals Dogs who are socialized with other animals from an early age tolerate them well and can be friendly.

can represent a serious challenge that the dog may decide to scare away. untrained dog. however. as well as to the dog. It is surprising how quickly a dog can turn from a calm pet to an aroused killer when little creatures scurry around them or fly off suddenly. Time is important. This process can take longer with adult dogs. For these reasons. Chasing games Some animals are more likely to be chased than killed. If he has never lived with one. Sitting with them under control in a place where they can experience these animals will teach puppies to relax and to behave well with them in the future. each other’s company. All you can do is make both animals feel as comfortable and safe as possible. and any others with a strong predatory instinct are much more likely to be troublesome to other animals than those bred as companions. and not forcing encounters until they are ready to make friends. Their instincts are strong and should not be underestimated. The likelihood of traffic accidents. Those whose immediate ancestors were bred to kill vermin (the terriers). Horses. horses. are large and. too. All kinds of livestock are potential chase targets for an inexperienced. and birds. damage to property. cats. This can best be done by accustoming puppies to livestock. the family dog may be aggressive to a new kitten or cat and try to chase it out of the house. rabbits. but they. and potential injury to other animals. Dogs and cats If cats and dogs grow up together. especially when they are around small. will gradually learn to accept other animals if you can find enough time to train them to do so.071 Dog talk dogs—and their owners—into trouble. if unfamiliar to the dog. and other smaller pets from an early age. but this behavior can potentially get . vulnerable pets. Care should always be taken with small pets such as hamsters. owners should do all they can to avoid this behavior. those that were bred to chase (the herding dogs). gerbils. and even enjoy. particularly if he is a terrier. is high when dogs chase out of control. giving each time and space to find their feet. they can learn to tolerate. for example. Controlled encounter Keeping your dog under control while in fields of livestock and horses is important to prevent the dog from giving chase—or the other animals from chasing and injuring your dog.

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you will help him to be content and thus easy to live with. and providing the correct nutrition.What your dog needs Learning what your dog requires for a fulfilling life is key to being a good owner. COAT CARE . Making sure your dog feels safe in his world will allow him to relax and prevent him from showing defensive behavior. and the complex issue tangles and incoat free from good condition is an important part of providing of breeding and neutering. If you can meet these needs. will make him feel comfortable and increase his sense of well-being. Giving him enough opportunities to play and exercise. for your dog’s needs. This section tells you how to achieve this. as well as looking at grooming and Keeping the handling.

and also to avoid all the unwanted behaviors that arise when they feel the need to defend themselves against actual or perceived threats. If the dog’s owner does not see this or does not know how to interpret these signs. When a dog feels under threat and afraid. its fear is evident in the way that the dog holds its body. . Nor can they complain or write us a note when they are anxious or worried. As in all animals. he cannot think of anything other than getting safe. Owners often view any growls and snaps as unacceptable behavior. when it feels really threatened. the dog will continue to feel afraid and. they cannot ask us for help or tell us when they are frightened. it will have no choice but to defend itself. Flight Dogs usually move away from a threat if it is possible to do so. humans always take priority and dogs have to go along with our decisions. leading to yet more anxiety and concern. this reaction “If a dog is afraid.Safety Dogs need our help to allow them to feel safe in our world. This dog holds back his ears and walks away looking tense.” only serves to create confusion in the dog. Because dogs cannot speak our language. Staying safe In our world. However. safety is always of paramount importance for dogs. and they may punish their dog in an attempt to stop it.

he will not be able to eat. and so they have no choice. Appease—attempt to show a bigger animal he means no harm. the owner must learn to read the dog’s body language (pp. They can also help with dogs that are not yet aggressive. If a threat appears too suddenly. They may bark aggressively and snap in the air. or who has had bad experiences and is already scared. he cannot think of anything other than making himself safe. the freeze option is not working. they cannot use the flight option. Flight—run away from danger. It is also important to protect a dog from bad experiences. If they are cornered or on a leash. A good relationship with his owner is an essential element in a dog’s sense of safety. ears back. 075 What your dog needs Aggression Dogs only use aggression when they have no other option. but may become so without treatment. dogs may bite.254). play. Help your dog feel safe To prevent your dog feeling fearful. Dogs will usually growl in an attempt to make the threat back off. Dogs tend to be very distressed afterwards. which are as follows: Freeze—keep perfectly still and hope that he will be left alone. Appease This dog adopts a submissive posture when faced with a stranger. and will be relieved if their owners help them find a non-aggressive solution to their problem. Positive training and education from owners will help to reinforce this. lunging quickly with lots of noise to try to scare the threat away. Puppies and gentle dogs often use this strategy. If he trusts his owner. With a dog who has not undergone good early socialization. The owner also needs to desensitize the dog to all the things he finds threatening or make him anxious. and teeth on show. he is more likely to trust and feel safe with other humans. Fight—use aggression to get rid of the threat. Good socialization during puppyhood (pp. Biting is usually a last resort when all else has failed.if a dog is afraid. this dog gives a threat display in an attempt to make a stranger move away. Fight Eyes wide.92–3) will produce a welladjusted dog who views the outside world as a safe place. to encourage a positive attitude in her dog. and owners should make sure that their dog is feeling comfortable and safe at all times. This owner helps her puppy to get used to traffic by being supportive and cheerful.60–1) Protect him Carefully expose puppies to new experiences while they are still young and receptive. Courses of action A dog who is threatened has four options. He may snatch at offered treats and then spit them out. Indeed. . you need him to be comfortable and familiar with everything that he may encounter in his world. Owners of dogs that are already aggressive should seek help from an experienced pet behaviorist (p. and keep him away from anything that he finds frightening. and use toys and treats to replace his negative feelings with positive experiences. with no time for warnings. or concentrate. who can give an accurate diagnosis and prepare a treatment plan to help change your dog’s behavior.

mental stimulation. wolves. many owners can only spare a relatively small amount of time for their dogs. In our modern world. who need to keep their bodies in good condition for hunting. On the other hand. most dogs are no longer worked. Walking Walking should be an essential part of your routine as it will provide exercise. . a dog that is kept restricted and confined readily becomes a boisterous. This often results in pet dogs having too much energy for 076 Building bonds Retrieving Teaching a young dog to retrieve different objects is essential if you want to be able to exercise him quickly and easily when he is older. and interest for both of you.Exercise requirements A well-exercised dog is calm and easy to live with. agitated nuisance who is really difficult to own. Harnessing energy Dogs have inherited the genes that give them the desire to run and be active from their ancestors and wild relatives. In addition. These active traits have been deliberately enhanced through selective breeding to produce breeds with great energy and stamina for different types of work.

Puppies Puppies need careful exercise as they have soft joints and bones that cannot tolerate too much walking. young working dog. steal things.172–3).160–85) and exercises will keep him active and involved in your everyday life.136–41). If you have only a limited time to spend with your dog each day. It not only makes dogs feel good. and stamina-building. but also they are much nicer to live with when they return home. but older dogs and those from nonworking stock will need less. Problem behaviours are common in under-exercised dogs. become obsessed with finding food. so that he is reliable off the lead and can be exercised easily. Physical exercise should be aerobic. Dogs with too much energy may chew all sorts of “If you have limited time to spend with your dog each day. Puppies and young dogs often have a “crazy five minutes”. and find it difficult to concentrate on learning or pleasing their owners. They jump up.124–5) and also to retrieve (pp. Learning new tricks (pp. as is the case with walking. bark. in the form of playing and learning. As well as physical exercise. Make time to teach your dog different games and actions. How much is enough? The amount of exercise you give depends on your dog and his needs. chase away imaginary intruders whenever they hear a sound. Burning energy Free-running exercise is essential. when they race around crazily with their tail tucked underneath them. will give you the ideal exercise plan. you need to make the most of it. Teach your dog to come back when called (pp. whine.” need both physical exercise and mental stimulation. . in the form of free running and play. especially the descendants of working dogs. household goods. you need to make the most of it. interspersed with periods of walking and off-lead running. so that you can exercise his mind easily while at home without exhausting yourself. are boisterous and thoughtless. Finding hidden objects in boxes or around the house is a good mental exercise Regular lessons Learning new exercises and tricks uses up your dog’s mental energy and gives you useful cues for how to involve him in your daily life. and run away in search of entertainment. as they try to find an alternative outlet for their considerable mental and physical energies. Short sessions of vigorous play. Two daily walks of about an hour’s duration each are enough for a healthy. Active play and free-running for short periods will help to use up their energy and make them easier to raise. with the advantage that he will be tired when you want to rest or have to go out to work. Dogs What your dog needs (pp.their owners to cope with. dogs require mental exercise.

but there are also sachets of “natural” or organic ready-made foods. The advantages are that this method of feeding is more natural and no preservatives are needed. Feeding for health What you feed your dog could affect how long he lives. and vitamins. essential fatty acids. Some owners prefer to feed a more natural diet of raw meat and bones with liquidized vegetables and other supplements.Nutrition What a dog eats can make a difference to his state of health and his ability to fight off disease. which may rob it of some of its nutrients. A balanced dog food should contain the following: Fats Proteins Carbohydrates Minerals Vitamins Water Dogs need the correct ratio of fat to proteins as well as all 10 essential amino acids. and how he behaves. all the food is pre-cooked before packing. 078 Building bonds “Always make any changes in your dog’s diet gradually to avoid upsetting his digestion. The disadvantages of prepared foods are that they often contain artificial preservatives and can contain chemicals to provide color and flavor. or Biologically Appropriate Raw Food). which is claimed to be healthier because it is uncooked.” Dog-food types The range and choice of dog food has expanded greatly during the last few decades. you can be sure that the food contains all your dog needs for a balanced diet. In addition. how well he is. Not only can you now choose from “complete” dry mixes or moist tinned ones. as well as to how he feels and behaves. many owners prefer the easier option of buying a complete food from pet-food manufacturers that has been specially prepared to provide balanced nutrition. reputable company. However. homemade diets do need to be carefully balanced. dogs need foods that give them energy and nutrients. Many owners prefer to feed a homemade diet of raw foods known as the BARF diet (the letters stand for Bones And Raw Food. While a home-prepared diet can contain all of these. The advantages are that these foods are very convenient and. minerals. Always provide him with a balanced diet. if you buy from a well-established. The right diet Just like humans. as well as specially developed mixes tailored to the differing nutritional needs of puppies and older dogs (“seniors”). Complete dried dog food Sachet Senior Tinned BARF diet Puppy .

a dog in cold conditions needs more energy to keep warm. never feed cooked ones (these can splinter). together with rawhide chews and a range of other types (pp. Always make changes in diet gradually to avoid upsetting your dog’s digestion. For this reason. it is sometimes worth changing the diet to see if this improves matters. If you are doing a lot of training. adult dogs will continue to chew throughout their lives to keep their jaws and teeth in good condition. Thin dog Just right Obese dog The disadvantages are that it is time-consuming and it is difficult to ensure that a balanced diet is being provided. 079 What your dog needs Energy requirements Different dogs have different energy requirements. he An ideal weight Just like humans. always be prepared to vary the amount fed to keep your dog at his ideal weight Over-eating Feeding your dog too much will compromise his health and make it more difficult for him to play and exercise. remove some of his daily ration each day to allow for extra treats that will be given during the training sessions. For example. There is much controversy over what dogs should chew. If given the opportunity. a dog’s optimal weight should be neither too thin nor too fat. . If your dog is showing unwanted behavior half an hour after eating. a working dog needs more energy to keep going all day. If you allow bones. Some vets advise against bones because they can cause intestinal trouble. a nursing mother needs more energy to feed her puppies. Food that seems to suit one dog may appear to cause another to be difficult and badly behaved. Diet and behavior There is limited scientific evidence for the effects of diet on behavior. every time he eats. Pet shops sell a variety of smoked and hardened bones. Consult your veterinarian about what to feed. (see diagram below). and a neutered dog needs less energy than one that is entire.94–5). and remove the bone from your dog before he ingests too much. Extremes either way compromise health. Adjust his food intake accordingly.Bones and chewing Puppies chew when teething. As well as behavior therapy. may be allergic to the food.

it is a great way to exercise him without expending too 080 Building bonds “Play strengthens their bodies and allows them to practice all the moves they will need for hunting. Types of games Dogs play three types of games with us: chase games. tug-of-war games.Why dogs play For wild dog puppies. Although our domestic dogs have no need to catch their own food. stalking. Chase This is the most widely played game. and puppies need to find an outlet for these natural behaviors.138–9). play is a rehearsal for the hunting behaviors they need later in life in order to survive. and squeaky toy games. This play strengthens their bodies and allows them to practice all the moves they need for hunting. and they incorporate many aspects of the hunting sequence. Consequently. the instincts that allow them to do so are often still present. they Thrill of the chase Herding dogs love the thrill of the chase and can become completely obsessed with chasing toys. becoming more efficient as they grow and hone their skills. Play frequently to use up energy. but keep sessions short to avoid exhausting your dog. Domestic dogs play throughout their lives. chasing.” . If you teach your dog how to bring back a toy to you (pp. and pouncing. so they can become proficient while still being fed by others. practice following moving objects. Natural behavior Both wolf and domestic dog puppies begin to play various hunting and wrestling games as soon as they are sufficiently coordinated.

Moving the toy. . instead. but it can be achieved if you can make the and keep games fun and active. whereas others work fast to destroy the squeak inside the toy and then instantly lose interest. If he is focused on playing with you. like small prey. of the game and put it away. are not very interested in playing with toys. he is less likely to run off looking for other things to chase and to get into trouble chasing other dogs. Always play in short. Disinterested Dogs of some breeds. 081 What your dog needs Non-players Not all dogs are natural toy players. Vets treat many cases in which the end of a stick has stuck in the ground and an enthusiastic dog has injured his mouth on the other end. Repellent though this may appear to us. which were bred to enjoy the chase. the toy is usually discarded. which is played in close proximity to your dog.Tugging game Tug games are great fun for dogs. as the squeak represents the cry of an injured animal. active bursts. Most hounds fall into this category. Toys on a walk If your dog likes to chase. and gun dogs. take care not to overheat him on hot days with too much running. Trying to get them to play with toys after puppyhood is difficult. which were developed to pick things up and thus are natural retrievers. especially if they learn how to bring the toy back to you after the chase. Exercise props Dogs who enjoy playing with toys are much easier to exercise. they prefer to chase live animals if the opportunity arises. joggers. Since tugging is a vigorous game. can stimulate their interest. you must establish some practical rules for play: with your sleeves or trouser legs. livestock. Some breeds enjoy chase games more than others. more often than you lose them. always remember to take some toys with you when you go for a walk. especially herding dogs. enjoy playing with squeaky toys. if any connection is made between the dog’s teeth and human skin. it is just a game to our dogs. Taking toys on a walk will also help prevent the temptation to throw sticks for your dog. Killer instinct Squeaky toys are exciting to predatory dogs who enjoy “killing” the squeak. so that you can play together. However. this is their favorite game and they will try to play it even if it means pulling on their owner’s sleeve or their leash. who will run again and again. but they do need strict rules to prevent them getting out of hand. If your dog is a very enthusiastic player. and cars. once it no longer squeaks. especially terriers and competitive dogs. Some dogs can keep a squeaky toy intact for a long time. much energy yourself. as soon as you ask him to. especially terriers. and then give him sufficient time to cool down in between sessions. Tug of war Terriers and other strong-willed dogs enjoy tug-of-war games. For some dogs. Squeaky toy games Dogs with a strong predatory instinct. cyclists. especially hounds.

and everything else your dog requires will make him contented and pleasant to live with. plenty of exercise. He will also be easier to train and will learn more quickly. .Fit for life Providing good nutrition.

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Continue in this way. As he closes in on it for the second or third time. Teach your dog to play Most dogs want to play. Holding one end. Choose a time to play with your dog when he is already excited. As your dog becomes interested and comes to investigate. . encourage him to pick up the toy and. They prefer soft toys. keeping the lessons short. especially when teething. Control measures will always help to reduce his enthusiasm. you must teach your dog to do the following: Sit and wait patiently when you have a toy until you let him know that you are ready to start play. move the toy towards him quickly and then pull it away again to tempt him. Keep it moving. you can begin to teach him good manners. tempt him with tasty food treats tucked inside it. help him get the food out and praise him well. but you will need patience and perseverance. Chasing the toy to get the food teaches him that toys are fun. Puppy play Young puppies are easily enticed to play. before moving it away and repeating the exercise. move it along the floor erratically. so be sure to wait until he is playing really well before you embark on this stage. As he goes to investigate.Well behaved play Teaching an adult dog to play is easy. sometimes hiding it behind furniture and at other times revealing it quickly before hiding it again. When dogs begin to play with toys. Good manners When your dog plays well and enthusiastically. who may have been scolded for picking up objects in the past. Begin with a small fluffy toy. Others. let him take it and play with it for a few seconds “When your dog plays enthusiastically. until your dog’s tail starts to wag in anticipation of a game whenever he sees the toy.” 084 Building bonds Edible incentive Encourage a reluctant dog to get interested in a toy by hiding food inside. The three rules To instill good manners. you can begin teaching him good manners. if necessary. but some may not have played with their owners as puppies and do not know how to play with toys. If you have difficulty in getting him interested in the toy. may be reluctant to take hold of toys. teaching them good play manners will prevent any accidents caused by over-excitement. Let him sniff the toy before throwing it just out of his reach.

Stop playing as soon as you tell your dog to do so. so that he learns to be more careful next time. and use different toys to introduce variety. Reward him enthusiastically when he does. ask him to stop and then bring the game to a swift close. but once an adult dog has learnt how to play. To teach him to stop playing on command. To teach your dog to keep his teeth off you during play. This prevents over-excitement and teaches self-control. Praise him for letting go of the toy and then decide if you want to play again. preventing him finding other outlets for his energy. simply stop and walk away from him if his teeth touch you. Teaching these three rules will ensure that all games are played in a controlled way and with no risk of damage to you. Ensure that both of you are having fun. and wait until he makes his own decision to stop holding on to the toy. and keeping him fit. keep everything as still as possible to avoid any excitement. Play his favorite game by choosing whichever toy interests him most.Retain control You need to teach your dog to stop and let go of a toy as soon as you ask him. If he will not relinquish the toy. he will usually want to do so frequently. helping build close bonds. removing the toy from . Play request Enthusiasm for games takes a while to develop. and keep the games as light-hearted as possible. his mouth by offering a tasty treat instead. 085 What your dog needs Benefits of playing games Playing games with your dog brings many benefits. Keep his teeth well away from your hands during the game.

although adult dogs can still be taught to accept these Massage session Everyday handling. They also provide an opportunity to give your social dog the love and affection he needs. . 086 Building bonds Restraint Dogs not only need to learn that in handling them we mean them no harm. but also that they cannot get free until we let them go. and massaging sessions with your dog will help to build trust and enhance the special bond between you. and be patient.Grooming and handling Grooming and handling sessions with your dog allow you to carry out essential body maintenance procedures. adopting a gentle approach. or mating. procedures if you allow sufficient time for them to learn to trust you. as a dog who cannot be Avoid a struggle Teaching your dog to accept and even enjoy gentle restraint will make him a better patient if he ever becomes sick or is injured in an accident. Dogs must learn to trust that we will not hurt them in this process. not only to restrain them and carry out essential activities. Handling should begin when your dog is a puppy. Move slowly until your dog accepts what you are doing. but also to show their affection. Always keep handling sessions short and friendly. This is important. grooming. and make sure he is fully relaxed before you move on to the next stage. Humans need to touch their dogs. The need to touch Dogs rarely touch each other unless they are playing. fighting.

make sure that he enjoys it. some need clipping. Use these sessions as an opportunity for a quick health check to find any parasites. However. he will enjoy grooming and massage. Some molt naturally. seek advice from a professional dog groomer. there to protect him against the elements. silky hair need daily grooming to keep them free of knots. often gets dirty and smelly. Selective breeding has resulted in a variety of coat types. Release him when he is still and relaxed. If your dog has a long or curly coat. but all will benefit from daily examination and handling. ensure he enjoys these sessions and be considerate when you use brushes and combs. Finetoothed comb Slicker brush Bristle brush Watch the quick Take care to avoid cutting the quick that runs through the center of the nail. and the ones you choose depends on your dog’s coat length and type. 087 What your dog needs Bathing A dog’s oily coat. which ends close to the end of the nail and carries blood vessels and nerves. Grooming tools There are a wide variety of grooming tools available to suit all coat types. cuts. Keeping trim Dogs with long. Coat types Coat types vary according to a dog’s breed. The power of touch Once your dog has got used to being handled. Smooth Spotted Rough Grooming Some breeds need more grooming than others. but gently and firmly hold on if he tries to move away. there is no reason not to wash him as often as you like. which require different grooming routines.effectively handled will be difficult to treat if he is sick or injured. Get your dog used to the feel of the clippers against his nails. Brushes and combs These perform different functions. with coarser protective hairs on top to keep out wind and rain. and each will need a different care routine to keep the coat in good condition. Wiry Curly Long Nail clipping It is a good idea to get this done by an experienced person at a veterinary office or grooming parlor to avoid cutting the quick. or abnormalities that may need veterinary attention. Gradually get your dog used to being held and restrained—don’t press your fingers into him. and having his paws held. and others need to have the old hairs stripped out by hand. or a professional dog groomer to show you what to do or ask them to do it for you. fluffy hair. Choose those that are appropriate for keeping your dog’s fur free of mats and knots. nurse. Whatever your dog needs. lumps. . Long and curly coats require the most care. as well as regular trips to the grooming parlor. A natural coat is made up of an insulating under-layer of short. and dry him thoroughly afterwards. Ask a veterinarian. If your dog is kept inside and is well sheltered from harsh weather conditions.

The desire to reproduce is strong.Breeding and neutering The decision of which dogs will mate and produce puppies is largely controlled by humans. you will have to find good homes for the resulting puppies. Responsible ownership Life with an entire dog. Roaming If an entire male dog picks up the scent of a female in season. a considerable time investigating scent marks to verify the reproductive status of females and also to check out the competition from other entire males. Careful thought should be given to producing a litter and. he may escape from home. If entire male dogs scent a female who is ready to mate. and other “suitable” objects. Owners need to decide whether to have their dog neutered or cope with living with an entire (un-neutered) animal. cushions. is more complicated than living with a neutered pet—the behaviors that facilitate mating can cause problems if they are not properly managed. become more competitive with other males. if this is not desired. Some dogs may even be difficult to confine at home. going off their food. you should consider the benefits of neutering. they will mark their territory more. to try to track her down. and mounting people’s legs. If accidental mating does occur. 088 Building bonds Scent marking The hormone testosterone triggers changes in a male dog’s brain at puberty. causing him to lift his leg when he urinates and allowing him to scent mark objects more accurately. Entire male dogs Entire males are always intensely interested in other dogs within their territory. and therefore they spend . and entire males with mating in mind are unlikely to listen to their owners’ commands. male or female. and work hard to track the female down. howling. or run off on walks.

What your dog needs Inherited diseases Selective breeding to produce the perfect show dog has resulted in a reduction of the number of mates available. which can lead to weight gain unless food is restricted. and discarding diseased stock from breeding dogs. Female rivalry Entire females living in the same household can develop intense rivalry during estrus. may fight with other females. and plenty of socialization as they develop. they can experience phantom pregnancies about two months later. is essential for producing healthy puppies and eradicating future health problems.” . If they are not mated. there is an increased risk of urinary incontinence in neutered bitches. when they make nests. Removing urges A neutered dog is more content to stay at home with its owner. “Life with an entire dog is more complicated than living with a neutered pet. and look after phantom or substitute babies. They have mood changes. Disadvantages for both sexes involve coat changes and increased appetite. and may even try to escape to find a mate. Testing for inherited diseases. so before buying a puppy. it reduces the risk of possible life-threatening womb infections and mammary tumors. It takes away the desire to mate and all the associated behaviors. not needing to escape and run off to track down a suitable mate. good food. regular cleaning. This increases the risk of inherited disease. 089 Neutering Neutering involves the surgical removal of the dog’s reproductive organs by a vet under anaesthesia. produce milk. check his parents have been tested for such conditions and found to be free of disease. They will also need veterinary care. and parents are often too closely related. Neutering only removes desires that are prompted by circulating sex hormones. It is usually carried out at puberty for males and after the first season for females. During this time they are sexually receptive to the advances of entire males. leading to bullying or fights. although it can be done earlier or later. Entire female dogs Entire females come into estrus about once every six months for two weeks. For entire females that are not required for breeding. However. and it is not a cure-all for behavior problems.New lives Finding good homes for a litter of puppies is not an easy task.

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and for learning through life with ease. and issues needs to be worked through carefully.Age-related issues Each stage of canine life brings with it different challenges and responsibilities. giving you the information you Puppyhood is a time for finding need to help your dog progress out about the world. Elderly dogs need special care to help them live contentedly and cope with the difficulties that old age brings. Puppyhood is the most time-consuming and important stage—the habits formed and behavior patterns learned in the first year will last a lifetime. Adolescence is a testing time for owners. This section will prepare you for the challenges ahead. for building good habits. LIFE’S LESSONS . about how to live with humans.

steps. Good habits established during this critical period will last a lifetime. just being there to educate and train them is as important as doing the right thing. the right choices. During these crucial weeks. This fearfulness can develop into aggressive behavior as the puppy grows into an adult. Puppies always require constant supervision to ensure they make Gentle exposure Gradually introducing your puppy to everyday objects will help him feel safe and comfortable. following the examples shown in this book. Socialization One of the main influences on a puppy’s adult character is the amount of socialization he receives during the first 12 weeks of his life. Lack of exposure to people and pets at a young age may cause a puppy to be fearful and shy in cars. Breeders and owners alike must ensure that puppies meet—and have pleasant encounters with—as many new people as possible during their early lives. 092 Building bonds Good habits As well as socialization. to ensure they grow up into well-behaved and well-adjusted adult dogs. will enable you to train reliable responses. puppies will readily make friends with humans and other animals— good experiences around both are vital during this period. slippery surfaces. as well as develop a good relationship with your dog.Puppyhood: the first year The first year of a dog’s life sets its character and forms its behavioral habits. For these reasons. puppies need to be well educated throughout the first 12 months. This process should continue until they reach maturity. unfamiliar situations. and loud noises. including vacuum cleaners. well-adjusted character in a young puppy. For owners. for example with children and other animals. as will bad ones. . Character building Happy encounters with all types of people and animals are essential for developing a friendly. Reward good behavior Teaching your puppy what he should do is both easier and kinder than telling him off for doing things that you don’t want him to do. Reward-based training. and his world will seem a less frightening place. The traits it develops may be good or bad depending on the effort made by the breeder and the puppy’s new owner. based on love and trust. and that they experience a wide range of stimulating environments. it is essential that your puppy is born and raised in a household rather than outside in a kennel. a young puppy needs to get accustomed to its environment and become familiar with the wide range of everyday occurrences inside and outside the home. In addition.

Never reward it. so utilize this time to teach them what they can and should not do.” Setting boundaries It is equally important to set boundaries so that your puppy learns what is and is not acceptable. prevent it by using a lead and a toy and distracting your puppy into doing something more acceptable instead. he will stop doing it. Puppies are eager to please until they reach adolescence. Once your puppy learns that he will not be rewarded for this behavior.“A puppy should be born and raised in a household rather than in a kennel. Distraction technique If the behavior is self-rewarding. If you win lots of small contests now. he is less likely to challenge you over more important issues when he is bigger and stronger. Making your puppy aware that he cannot have everything his own way will help him learn to deal with the frustration he will face later in life when he wants something he cannot have. . such as stealing food from the table. 093 Age-related issues Ignore bad behavior Always make a point of ignoring any form of unwanted behavior. Teaching him that you will not give way once you have decided on a course of action will let him know that you are mentally stronger than him. and will prevent him from making challenges later on.

Solutions to puppy problems Puppies do not arrive in our homes already trained. always have a large soft toy to hand when you interact. This is quite normal for them as they play with other members of their species by biting and wrestling. Providing plenty of items that can be chewed is the secret to getting through this phase without too many ruined shoes and other household items. Move it and wriggle it. Supervise your Toy play Teaching your puppy to play with toys instead of your hands will prevent him practicing play biting as well as providing an outlet for his strong desire to play games with you. keeping the rest of your body still. Play biting Puppies try to get us to play by biting our hands in the same way they play with their siblings. During the early days with your puppy. and if you have children encourage them to do the same. Chewing Chewing is another normal behavior for teething puppies. For this reason. Not only do we need to teach them carefully how to behave. and feet in an attempt to get us to play with them. . Playful puppies bite our hands and sometimes our arms. letting him take the toy sometimes. faces. Play gently. but we also have to tackle any behavior problems early on to prevent them becoming bad habits. remove your hand and end the game. Play biting This is one of the most common puppy problems. If this happens. so that the toy becomes something exciting for the puppy to chase and grab. we need to teach them to play with toys instead. he will stop play biting. Once your puppy learns how to play with toys and can do so successfully. their very sharp puppy teeth hurt and therefore this form of play is unacceptable. but when they do it to us.

class size ensures you get more individual attention. Smoked bone Rawhide chew Stuffed bone Stuffed toy Sterilized bone Variety Provide a variety of chews to stimulate your puppy’s interest and prevent him chewing things that are unsuitable. and a trainer with a good knowledge of canine behavior will be able to help you overcome any problems. but also socializes him with other puppies and people.Types of chew There are many different chews on the market. or into a sterilized bone. Beware of another chewing phase at around seven to ten months as your puppy becomes a growing adolescent. . Deal with this by offering a variety of chews every few days. Help them to learn that the whole house is their nest by always taking them outside at the following times: constantly during the first two weeks. However.” Finding a good spot Stay out with your puppy when he needs to go to the toilet. he will have fewer accidents and house training will progress very quickly. “Once your puppy learns how to play with toys and can do so successfully. and let him run about and sniff. 095 Age-related issues House training Toilet training is easy if you are vigilant as puppies are born in a nest and come ready programed to be clean. Rawhide chew puppy when he is in places where these things may be lying around. and make sure there are plenty of suitable appetizing chews available. Puppy classes Taking your puppy to a training class not only improves your skills and techniques. he will stop play biting. and take him outside whenever he looks like he may need to go to the toilet. so that there is always something new to investigate and chew. stuffed. Ensure the trainer uses positive methods and avoid classes where puppies or people are treated badly. Your reassuring presence will help him relax and go more quickly than if he is left alone. Squeeze some edible treats into a strong toy with holes in it. taking away the old ones and bringing out different ones. If you supervise your puppy Expert guidance An experienced. It also helps to channel and use up his strong drive to chew. ranging from traditional rawhide types to sterilized. he will be too lonely to concentrate. qualified trainer will be able to advise you and help solve any behavior problems you may encounter with your puppy. Go to classes specifically for last thing at night. and smoked bones. Extracting the treats will keep your puppy busy and prevent him from chewing other household items. puppies soon get bored and may be tempted by items they should not chew.

. and all puppy owners need to prepare themselves for this phase. adolescence is a passing phase that comes to a natural end. your dog will eventually return to being the loving. and he will probably begin to actively ignore you in favor of things outside. and disobedient. whereas previously their focus had been on pleasing us. Suddenly. adolescent dogs are focused on the outside world and all it contains and are only occasionally interested in their owners. However. you are less important to him than exploration. finding out about their environment and everything in it becomes their top priority. 096 Difficult time This can be an awkward time for owners unless they are prepared for it. short faces. sniffing to find out who Irresistible With their big eyes. Now that your puppy is bigger. attentive pet you once knew. At this time. although some of the larger breeds do not reach full social maturity until they are around three years old. All their hard work seems to have been for nothing as their dog becomes rebellious. The adolescent dog has other things to do. their focus naturally shifts to the outside world as all the hormones associated with reproduction begin to circulate. Exploring the world Young puppies need us to care for them. It is easy for us to enjoy this phase. disinterested. Fortunately.Surviving adolescence Adolescence can be a difficult time. Losing interest Unlike puppies. and desire to please their owners. this period will soon be over and a lovely adult dog will emerge. Dogs usually begin to mature at about one year. If you can ride out the difficulties that adolescence presents. one of the most common problems for owners is their dogs not coming back when called on walks. stronger. young puppies make us want to care for them and meet their needs. such as exploring. but it does make it more difficult to accept the marked change in their attitude that occurs when they reach puberty at about six months. and becoming more independent. and they work hard to keep our attention by being sweet and engaging. Not coming back During adolescence. try not to worry—with the right attitude and perseverance.

097 Trouble with other dogs Adolescent dogs may also get into trouble as they get to know other dogs in the area and establish a ranking. they will be willing to please again. marking it with his own scent. During this time. Don’t make too many requests that are unlikely to be met. he has the vigor and energy of an adult. Keeping control During adolescence. it is advisable to use a long line when out on walks. . natural process with accompanying behavior changes that last until maturity is reached. This is when some give up on their dogs and put them into rescue. but lacks the knowledge and experience that an older dog needs to stay out of trouble. and interacting with other dogs. keep your dog on a long line in places where he may be tempted to go off without you. which is unnecessary. but do gently insist that your dog does as you ask. If your dog begins to have aggressive encounters. Adolescence is just a phase and when the dogs mature. Even if you had a good recall before. no longer responding to commands. and what has been in his territory. to prevent him getting into difficulties. adolescence is a normal. The teenage phase Just as with humans.Don’t give up Many owners complain that during adolescence their dogs begin to be disobedient. keep away from unknown dogs and only allow interaction with friendly ones. to prevent your dog ignoring your recall cues or getting into trouble.

He will need more sleep than when he was younger. and gentle exercise can help get them moving again. . Giant dogs. Cataracts may cloud the lenses of the eyes. as a general rule. This brings a reluctance to move. so he feels comfortable. are lucky if they make it to nine years old. but noticing when he is awake and playing and encouraging him to take exercise and be part of the family are important. who do not understand their condition. The effects of aging There are big differences in how long dogs live. with more and more time spent sleeping. Adjust to his speed. Slowing down To keep your dog living happily into old age. After this age. painful joints may make old dogs reluctant to move. and you should provide a comfortable. dogs gradually begin to slow down and their bodies start to fail as they get older. whereas Jack Russell Terriers sometimes live until they are 20. 098 Building bonds In addition. unexpectedly because they cannot hear you approaching. warm. and valued. elderly dogs may be likely to do things that are out of character.Elderly dogs Just like humans. Don’t forget him for long periods because he sleeps more. especially by children. failing senses provide less information about their world. Since they can no longer be sure about their surroundings. making it more difficult to see. he must stay active and engaged with life. However. their bodies are less suited to vigorous activity and will slowly decline as they get older. most dogs over 10 years old fall into the “elderly” category. with the sense of smell outlasting all others. Waking them gently by standing beside them long enough for them to smell you before you touch them can help prevent bitten fingers. so sounds appear distorted or muffled. because he did not notice someone approaching. Along with failing senses. painful joints cause stiffness and lack of mobility. Along with the bodily changes that age brings. the mind also starts to run more slowly and tiredness takes over. Do not disturb Elderly dogs need more rest. and safe place to sleep where they will not be disturbed. not rushed. Veterinary advice. Failing senses An elderly dog may jump and even bite defensively when he is touched unexpectedly. The eyes and ears are usually the first to fade. They may snap if touched Happy old age Elderly dogs can live a contented life with owners who help them through the changes old age brings. Old joints Stiff. such as the Great Dane. medication. Understanding and adapting to their changing needs will help them to remain content and happy into old age. and can result in defensive biting if dogs think that they are about to be moved in a painful way. and some hearing ranges are lost.

099 Age-related issues .

so that he can sleep near to the family and feel safe. may suddenly become frightening to the elderly dog. whether this is by lifting him up or using a ramp. It is vital to arrange regular check-ups for your dog with the vet. such as pain-induced behavioral changes produced by arthritis. whether to get him into the car or for any other reason. For example. such as not being able to tolerate being left alone in the dark. Changes due to aging are often slow to How to lift If you are lifting an older dog. but if it persists. your vet may be able to help with drugs and behavior therapy. If this is the case. In addition to specific fears. Phobias and fears Failing senses and reduced confidence late in life can lead to an elderly dog developing phobias and fears. Noises that he once tolerated. “Failing senses and Car ramp Large. fireworks. This will enable them to walk slowly into the car with the minimum of discomfort. With a little help and understanding. reduced confidence late in life can result in an elderly dog developing phobias and fears. Once inside. 100 Building bonds Regular check-ups Many of the behavioral changes and problems that occur in old age are caused by physical conditions. old dogs may develop generalized fears.” .Problems with elderly dogs Life with an elderly dog can be made easier if you deal successfully with some of the common problems that old age brings. such as thunder. heavy dogs who can no longer jump and cannot be lifted may need a specially designed ramp to get into the car. many difficulties can be overcome. Car travel Problems due to aging bodies and minds are common in older dogs. take care not to squeeze him in such a way that you compress painful joints or limbs. but there is much you can do to make them to feel safe and content in their final years. and even rain on a roof. This usually solves the problem. Finding a way to get him into the car without hurting him is important. providing a padded bed and taking corners and road bumps carefully can prevent him from losing his balance and having a painful fall. car journeys can become daunting for a dog who is already shaky on his feet. Lots of understanding and patience are needed to avoid situations in which he feels threatened. reorganize his sleeping arrangements.

Old dogs sleep a lot. others may be due to changes in the dog’s brain that can be improved by medication. together with a constant diet. Tender loving care Providing your old dog with extra care and understanding can lead to a quality of life that will bring him contentment for many years. A routine will help you remember to allow enough time to give your dog the love. 101 Age-related issues . Minimize change If your dog has failing sight. exercise. Ask your vet if medication can help.as getting lost or trapped in corners. but regular examination by a vet will help identify signs or symptoms of treatable conditions. sleeping patterns. If changes are essential. Regular feeding. decline in your shared relationship. play. Routine is important As dogs age and become fragile. make them one at a time. cognitive dysfunction syndrome can affect older dogs. appear. will help to prevent loss of house-training and keep their bodies working well. and toileting opportunities. You may find that they get lost or try to get out of the door on the wrong side. routine becomes very important. and stimulation he needs. Cognitive dysfunction syndrome Similar to Alzheimer’s Disease in humans. and it is easy to forget they are there. Symptoms of the condition include: Confused thinking Old dogs can become confused. Some symptoms may be part of the natural aging process. try to keep the furniture in the same place to help him find his way safely around your home. staring into space.

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Basic training 3 How dogs learn Good grounding .

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Reward-based training is fun learned in the first place.How dogs learn To be a successful trainer. With this knowledge. and how dogs learn sets of associations. as well as how bad habits can be unlearned Dogs learn very quickly if it is almost as easily as they were in their best interest to do so. and explains how to get your dog to do what you want. POSITIVE TRAINING . for both dog and owner. Find out why timing is critical to successful training. so you can reward the action. when to begin to phase them out. It also offers advice on which rewards to use. all practical training tasks will be easier for both you and your dog. you must understand how the learning process works in dogs. and what to replace them with. This section tells you all you need to know to train successfully.

and success Understanding how dogs learn is essential if we are to teach them how to respond to our requests easily and with minimal confusion. he will be able to repeat this task with ease.188–9). error.Trial. a dog who jumps up to greet his owner and is rewarded with fuss and attention will repeat this action. The learning process Dogs learn by trial. and success. They will repeat any action that leads to a successful outcome. and it will soon become a bad habit that is very difficult to break (pp. For example. Learning to respond We can use our dogs’ ability to learn from their actions by rewarding the behaviors we want to be repeated. However. cease to do it. a dog who burns his nose on a hot stove will not wish to do so again. 106 Basic training . It will also cut down the time it takes to train them. Once he learns how. just like humans. and will avoid those actions that go unrewarded or have unpleasant consequences. Likewise. a puppy who barks for attention and is ignored will Learning The smell of food inside a flip-top garbage can encourages this dog to use his initiative to find a way to get at it. error.

he will learn that when you give a certain signal he will be rewarded if he lies down. We can also utilize this technique when we want to train our dogs to respond to our requests.126–7). Set a timer. so that you both look forward to the next session. first lure him into position using a carefully held edible treat (p.110–11) just before you lure him into position. as they are so good as reading our non-verbal language). Respond on cue Once the puppy has learned what you want him to do. Train him to do this in a variety of situations (pp.110). and he will begin to do so whenever asked. Instead. keep each session short and end on a positive note with a successful outcome. Go back to something easier if necessary. this action can be put on cue. How dogs learn A training example If you want your dog to lie down when you ask. you will be able to reduce the rewards you offer (pp. After many repetitions of this action. but he needs to repeat this action several times before he learns what he must do to get the stick through the gate. As soon as his elbows reach the floor.114–5).The three-minute rule Our dogs lie around most of the time with their brains in neutral. such as to come when called (pp.116–7). When he has learned how to respond to the cue. 107 for them to do the action we require (p. Get the action To teach a puppy to respond to a request.124–5) or to lie down (pp. all we need to do is get him to perform the action and then reward it. so always make training sessions less than three minutes long. To train a dog to do something for us. Since dogs do not understand what we are saying (although sometimes people think they do. the dog needs to keep trying different actions until one of them is successful. Instead. so you can ask him to do it again. so that he does it again next time. we can put the action on cue by giving a voice cue or hand signal just before we arrange for them to carry out the action. and ignoring or preventing those we dislike. as it is easy to get carried away and to keep on training until you are both tired and frustrated. you need to find a way to get him to do the action you require. we need to cleverly arrange . Repeat this exercise until he knows what to do in order to get the treat. Then put the action on cue by giving a hand signal or the voice cue “down” (pp. Once this is going well and they know how to get the rewards in that situation. Trial and error Since he lacks a sophisticated brain to figure out this problem. we cannot tell them with words what we want them to do. Asking them to think and work out what we require during training is tiring for them. Success! This dog may have succeeded. feed him the treat.110) and then reward them.

Dogs get bored easily.122–3). Knowing how to use them and what your dog will find most rewarding will make training him easy and more enjoyable for both of you. Training treats Cheese cubes Meaty strips Hot dog pieces Moist treats Cooked chicken Cooked sausage .148–9). so keep checking what he likes most. for example coming back when playing with another dog (pp.Rewards Rewards are essential to the success of positive training techniques. Hierarchy of rewards Find out what your dog likes and grade them from most liked to least favorite. Types of reward Food 108 Basic training Games Small rewards Dogs will work hard for small pieces of food if they are sufficiently appetizing. Use the lowest-value rewards for easy tasks. and varying what is on offer will help to keep your dog’s performance levels high. What your dog views as high value will change over time. and the highest-value ones for difficult exercises. such as sitting (pp. Use a treat bag to help prevent a sticky mess in your pocket.

If he is not interested in training. This is especially true when the time comes to reduce the quantity of rewards given (pp. “Find out what your dog likes.109 How dogs learn Social approval Really make a connection with your dog when giving him social approval. is a very powerful reward for social animals. Social approval Social approval. in the form of praise. as this will mean a lot more to him than just a quick pat on the head. . Just as you may crave different things at different times of the day or week. then grade them from most liked to least favorite. Ensure he is hungry before training him with food. and they can be utilized in addition to food as a high-value reward for a very difficult task. and that he is active and ready to play if you are using toys. social approval has a limited use by itself. Since our pet dogs are usually not starved of this kind of attention. affection. and social contact. especially if you have a good relationship with your dog (pp. They are also useful for those with small appetites or who are not interested in traditional food treats. Playing with toys Games with toys make a good and enjoyable reward for dogs who know how to play.” Wanting the reward Judging what your dog wants at any moment in time and offering it for successful compliance is key to success.116–7). but it is still a useful addition to providing food and games as rewards for your dog. try to work out what would interest and motivate him more. so it is for your dog.66–7).

It is similar to the game of “Hot and Cold” played by children. You are shaping his behavior by rewarding him initially for making small movements towards your desired goal. Getting the action To achieve certain actions. eventually. 110 Basic training Learning from others Dogs may join in with natural behavior. so you can keep him interested while you move it. This increases the likelihood of him doing it again more easily next time. Shaping If you reward your dog for making any movement that takes him in the direction you want him to go. Luring is particularly useful for inexperienced puppies and dogs. .Make it happen We cannot explain to our dogs what we want them to do. try the following methods: Luring You can lure your dog into position by holding an appetizing morsel of food against his nose and moving it slowly in the direction you want him to go. so we need to find other means of getting them to do the actions we require. The piece of food needs to be big enough for the dog to lick and chew at. There are a variety of ways in which you can get your dog to carry out certain actions. This method is useful for more experienced dogs who know that you want them to do something and try different actions to find out what it is. Follow the treat Luring is an easy way to get a novice dog to move into different positions so that you can reward the action. to go in that direction to get the reward. feed the treat as a reward. such as barking at strangers. his head and body will follow. so he learns that going into that position brings a good result. Where his nose goes. then gradually allowing him to move closer to the goal before rewarding him. he will learn. As soon as you get your dog into position. but they find it difficult to learn complex tasks by mimicry.

Try to position your hand so that your dog can still see your face. 122–3 COME This signal consists of a movement of the arms held alongside the body and then brought out from the body to the position shown here. reduce the movement slowly. Eventually. After enough repetition. but it also causes a resistance as the dog pushes up against the pressure. Make sure the palm is facing up. 126–7 STAND For the “stand” hand signal. Because movements are more effective as signals. hold your hand flat. Modelling A common way to make a dog sit is to push down on his hindquarters. you will no longer need to move your hand to give the signal. otherwise. you will be crouching. WALK CLOSE The signal for “walk close” is made by holding your hand on your hip. This dog is learning how to close a cabinet door with his nose. at strangers. This action is very similar to the luring action and your dog should learn it easily. The palm should be facing down. you need to put it on cue. Once your dog knows this. 128–9 Target training Targeting is used to get dogs to do things they would not do naturally. and then the arms are taken out to either side. 130–1 111 How dogs learn WAIT To make this signal. such as turning off a light or pressing a pedal. 132–3 . then bring it down slowly towards your dog’s face and hold it stationary. reduce the movement gradually. Dogs will learn by joining in with natural behaviors. hold a flat hand in front of your dog’s nose and then draw it away. you can then move the target to get him to move to different locations. Try using this technique if you want your dog to do something that is not a natural behavior. so this technique is not very effective for training purposes. Mimicry Dogs find it difficult to mimic the behavior of other animals.Targeting If you teach your dog over several sessions to touch a target with either his nose or paw. so the movement is made with the hands together. 124–5 DOWN This hand signal consists of a downward motion with a flat hand. Begin with an exaggerated movement that starts near your thigh and ends at your shoulder. When you first begin training this exercise. you can pat your side initially so that your dog moves closer to investigate your hand before rewarding him. However. Any resistance means that he takes longer to learn what you want of him. not only is this dangerous for puppies or fragile dogs with growing or weak joints. such as barking Hand signals Once your dog can do the required action. your dog will perform the action when you give the hand signal. Begin with an exaggerated movement that starts near your shoulder and ends at the thigh. SIT This hand signal is an upward motion with a flat hand. Hand signals should be given just before the action (pp. but they find it difficult to learn complicated tasks from others in this way.112–3) so that your dog can make the connection. Reduce the signal gradually once your dog learns what you require. he may move in order to try to see around it. Once your dog knows this.

you need to be quick so that you reward at a time when your dog is still thinking about the sit rather than about getting up to move on.Timing Timing is really important to successful training. Good timing speeds up the training process and aids communication with your dog so that he can easily understand what you require of him. Be prepared Taking more than two seconds to give the reward means that your dog will have moved on to thinking about something else instead of what you wanted to reward. the sit rather than the getting up). Speed is essential Delivering a reward as soon as your dog has done the required action is the only way you have to tell him he has done what you wanted him to do. and not the action that follows it (e. watch him carefully and reward him just as his bottom touches the floor.g. Since you want your chosen action to be repeated. This will let him know exactly what is required next time. . Remember that actions that are rewarded are likely to be repeated. 112 Basic training Instant reward Watch your dog closely while you encourage the correct action. Learn to anticipate when he will go into position or do the correct action Reward immediately When teaching your dog to sit.

As soon as he has done the required action. If you are too late and reward after your dog has . the smell will take his attention away from training. of course. rather than waiting for the lure or whatever else you are using to gain the desired response. At first. so have Action moved on to thinking about something else. however. Once your dog has performed the desired action. you must reward him immediately. He will be confused about what you want or will respond in a way that is different to what you expected. add a short gap of a few counts between the cue and making the action happen to give your dog time to work out what you want. you will be rewarding this action instead and your dog will not learn what you want him to do. so keep them out of sight—unless.Hand signal and voice cue and have the reward ready. Then lure your dog into position if he does not understand the cue or signal.” word “sit” or a hand pointing to the ground (see above)—give the cue just before you make the action happen. If you hold rewards where a dog can see them while he is thinking about what to do. Repeated use of the cue will allow your dog to associate the cue with the desired action. so keep food and toys close and begin to reach for them as soon as your dog begins to do the action. After many repetitions. and training will be a confusing. Positive reinforcement Timing is crucial The voice cue and hand signal should be given first. to see if your dog understands what to do. reward instantly. Eventually he will everything in place. Later. Later. you are using them as a lure. leave a gap of a few moments between the cue/signal and the action. Timing cues To put an action on cue—in other words. reward any small movement towards what you want. first use a lure or other encouragement over several sessions until your dog can do it easily. Then add the voice cue and hand signals over several sessions so he begins to make the connection. You need to deliver rewards instantly. position or do the correct action and have the reward ready. “Learn to anticipate when he will go into Steps to learning cues When you teach a new action. to teach your dog to respond to a signal such as the command begin to respond as soon as he sees or hears the cue. frustrating experience for you both. they will only distract rather than encourage him. For example. Be careful. try keeping a reward concealed in your hand. but keep it well away from your dog’s nose—otherwise. wait for the complete action before rewarding.

Be aware that as well as learning the cue. Never punish your dog for not obeying you—he simply does not understand. he will begin to understand what the cue “sit” means. where he was previously rewarded. After many training sessions. so be patient. If you want your dog to understand all the major control cues. we may think he has learned the word “sit”. he will learn to carry out the action whenever he sees or hears the cue. Responding to cues When a dog is being taught to respond to a cue. “down”. When we teach a puppy to sit for his dinner. such as “come”. if you teach him to sit in front of you. “stay”. You also need to teach your dog the same lesson in many different positions relative to you. Practice in different places This puppy is learning to sit on cue when standing in front of his owner in the yard— a different location to where he previously learned to carry out this action. . Learning word cues The only cue that most pet dogs learn is “sit”. he will learn there is a reward for responding to the cue wherever he is. Instead. dogs are capable of learning hundreds of words. As the cue is the only association that these experiences have in common. you need to work hard and consistently to teach him each of these in turn in many different situations and circumstances.Associations Dogs learn a set of associations when we teach them to respond to a cue such as “sit”. and “heel”. What he has actually learned is that when he is standing in front of you in the kitchen and you hold his dish in your hand. All this takes a long time. 114 Basic training any of these associations. and the puppy will not understand what you want and will remain standing. By repetition over several training sessions. However. By varying your position relative to him during training. he will eventually learn to link the cue with the correct action to win his reward. teach your dog the same lesson in many different situations. your dog is learning a set of associations surrounding the event. This is because it is repeated over and over by owners in many different situations in their everyday lives until their dogs know it well. all he needs to do to get you to place the dish on the floor is to put his bottom on the ground when you say “sit”. he is learning to associate a hand signal or word with a particular action. we need to teach it to our dogs in a variety of different situations. provided that they are carefully taught. Otherwise. For the cue to work anywhere. he will move around to sit in front of you. and make sure you reward him well for doing it. To overcome this. show him what is required. Sitting on cue Here the puppy is learning that he will be rewarded for sitting when his owner is sitting in a chair. and then ask him to do it when he is beside you. Remove Learned associations This puppy has learned that he will get his food if he puts his bottom on the floor when facing his owner as she holds the dish.

115 How dogs learn .

as your dog will expect a reward every time he performs the correct action. letting him know that he has done the right thing by giving him lots of praise. you can begin reducing the number of rewards you offer. but to help keep rewards random. one of which is a different color. . but most dogs will work really hard to earn them if they appear at random. Jackpots It has been shown that reducing rewards in this way causes animals “Jackpots do not need to happen very 116 Basic training often. the more he will remember the jackpot and the harder he will work for it next time.Random rewards It is unnecessary to continuously use food as a reward once your dog has learned what to do. Do not reward every time When your dog understands completely what you require him to do when you give a particular hand signal or voice cue. The more fun your dog has. This needs to be done very gradually. Expectations Lack of reward can cause confusion at first. like the one shown here. and reward your dog only when you pull out the colored one.” Boost incentive Giving occasional rewards and jackpots can really improve performance because most dogs. This can be hard to do initially. When you decide not to reward a response to a cue. will try hard to “win” more treats more often. always tell him he is correct (see box). until eventually you are rewarding about one in every five responses at random. try putting five buttons in your pocket. but he will soon learn the new regime. The pay-off A jackpot is a time for celebrating. Weaning him onto occasional reinforcements and “jackpots” improves performance and reduces his reliance on treats.

Give him credit Always reward difficult actions and hard decisions. Really make an occasion out of the “win” and celebrate with your dog for maximum effect. but there is a chance that you will win a small prize or. Reward every time When training a new exercise. for many dogs. Over the course of many training sessions. Failure to reward an action before it is completely learned will lead to confusion. Jackpots do not need to happen very often. even when you do not reward him. such as a handful of favorite treats together with lots of fuss and a game. this word or phrase will become linked to the reward. Always reward difficult actions or complicated sequences of behavior. and can be used to let the dog know that he has done the right thing. However. overall performance will improve. so it is your choice whether to try this or not. Reward rules The rules for giving reinforcement rewards and jackpots are as follows: Only use them when the dog really understands what you want him to do. random rewards are an effective way of improving their performance. better still. the jackpot. such as “good dog”. whereas others will give up more easily. When you move on to occasional rewards. until he knows exactly what is expected when given a particular cue. offer a reward every time your dog is successful. 117 How dogs learn Good dog To make it easier for your dog to know that he has done something correctly. These are something special your dog really likes. Really celebrate a “jackpot”. use this signal to let him know he has done what you require. You may think it is unfair to reward some responses and not others.to work harder and for longer to earn treats. such as when your dog leaves his canine friends to come when you call him. Some dogs are highly competitive. but dogs will work really hard to earn them if they appear at random. whether or not you give a reward. The effect becomes even more pronounced if you offer occasional “jackpots”. If you do this. Make sure your dog enjoys his “wins”. . you will find that he begins to “gamble” on the outcome in the same way you do when buying a lottery ticket: sometimes you get nothing. Let your dog know he was correct and praise him well each time. practice a word or phrase you can say as soon as he does the required action. Make sure you reward him soon afterwards. If you save them for excellent performances.

but taking a look at life from your dog’s point of view can often reveal inadequacies in his care that his bad behavior is actually trying to address. looking at him. Just look the other way. he will have been rewarded for getting up and is more likely to do it again. which. . Get down If your dog has already settled down and made himself comfortable. Getting comfortable For some laid-back owners. in turn.Reversing bad habits Dogs can learn bad habits if they are rewarded unwittingly for unwanted behavior. No reward Attach a long line to your dog’s collar to prevent him getting comfortable every time he tries. To cure your dog’s bad habit. When the behavior that has worked so well for him in the past is no longer working. or touching him. This may seem obvious. This is useful for dealing with behaviors that owners reward unwittingly. This means constant vigilance on your part until he has learned new habits. Before you attempt this.188–9) or giving their dogs attention when they are performing unwanted actions. he will try even harder to get what he wants. 118 Basic training Worse behavior For a short time. especially if your dog is barking excessively. This can be difficult. relaxing on the sofa is a perfectly acceptable behavior for their dog. Do not reprimand your dog—for some dogs. even being told off is better than being ignored. will make his behavior worse. If the behavior is self-rewarding. Act quickly Ensure that you get him off the sofa before he gets comfortable. He will also feel frustrated. such as getting up on a comfortable sofa to sleep. but they can be unlearned just as easily provided that their owners know what to do and work hard to change their pets’ behavior. such as jumping up (pp. which means not speaking to your dog. Curing bad habits Dogs can unlearn a “bad” behavior if you are able to remove the reward they receive when they do it. you will need to stop or prevent it from happening while you encourage an alternative equally-rewarding behavior. so that he learns he is not rewarded by this action. you should make sure that your dog is getting everything he needs in order to feel content. It is really important that you do completely ignore the barking. then turn away and pretend that you are not interested. the whole family must work together in ignoring the unwanted behavior. so be prepared for this. in which case warn your neighbors and buy some ear plugs. however. it is likely that your dog’s behavior will get worse instead of better. but others would prefer that he slept elsewhere.

such as being quiet or not jumping up. eventually he will realize that this behavior no longer works. reward the behaviors you do want instead. Be patient and wait for this to happen. his “bad” behavior. he will get into the habit of going to his bed to sleep. will quickly get him into good habits. To speed up the process. will stop.119 How dogs learn However. Just continue to ignore them and you will find that they will subside. it is better if they are never learnt at all. your dog’s behavior is likely to get worse instead of better. especially during puppyhood. he will learn to stay on all four paws.116–7)— he will then try even harder to make the unwanted behaviour work. if you continue to ignore him. If he is never encouraged onto a sofa or bed when young. although it may take some time. which is suitable from his point of view. Try not to reward unwanted behavior unwittingly. A good alternative Providing your dog with a comfortable place to lie down. “For a short time. Occasional lapses In spite of all this training. such as by telling him off when he is muddy and tries to jump up. Prevention over cure Since behaviors that are rewarded are remembered easily. If you prevent a puppy from practicing a behavior until he is a year old. If everyone bends down to greet him and prevents him jumping up on visitors.” rewarded. especially if they were rewarded often over a long period of time. it is likely he will never think of doing it. Telling him off sometimes and ignoring him at other times will randomly reward him (pp. you must be prepared for occasional lapses as your dog will not forget those behaviors that have been . Once your dog realizes how to get rewarded for good behavior. which is no longer being rewarded. It is very important to remember that any form of bad behavior that goes unrewarded will cease.

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and treats results in a dog that enjoys training sessions tricks. He will be easier to manage. and can be included in your everyday activities instead of being left at home. leaving you more time for play and other fun-filled activities that make dog ownership such a joy. and sports. HAPPY HEELWORK .Good grounding A well-trained dog is a real pleasure to live with. Teaching your dog the simple exercises shown in this section will give you a way to communicate your wishes to your dog and allow you to control his actions. and tries really hard to please you. useful skills. which will advance his education and allow you to teach him Positive training using praise. interesting rewards. These exercises will also lay the foundations for the more complex training outlined in later sections.

your dog will eventually learn to respond to the voice cue alone. teach him to respond to a hand signal. 122 Basic training 1 Get his attention With your dog standing. once your dog is readily responding to the hand signal. give the voice cue “sit” just before you start. sitting quickly becomes the posture that most dogs adopt if they see that their owner has something they want. with your dog in different positions in relation to you (pp. because they have been rewarded most often in this position. Then slowly raise the treat. luring his nose steadily upwards. After a number of sessions. or misbehaving in any other way. In addition. Continue to do so as you teach him to respond to a hand signal (right). giving him time to follow it up and backwards with his nose. and with increasing distractions going on all around.Sit Sit is one of the easiest exercises to teach and a very good place to start training your dog.114–5). GOOD PRACTICE Once your dog can easily be lured into the sit position. wait a moment. barging through doorways. give a clear hand signal. Teaching your dog to sit gives you control and allows you to keep him in one place. . you can begin to phase it out by making it less exaggerated. Get his attention. 2 Raise the treat Move the treat gradually over your dog’s head. hold a tasty treat in your fingers and allow him to lick a small piece of it. Don’t forget to train the sit exercise in different places. It is the exercise that most owners teach first and the cue that is repeated most often throughout a dog’s life. then lure your dog into a sit as before. Wait for his back legs to begin folding naturally. A dog that is sitting is not jumping up. If you always precede the hand signal and lure with the word “sit”. Hand signal Once your dog can easily be lured into the sit. running off.

give him the treat and praise him enthusiastically. 3 Jumping up If your dog has to jump up to reach the treat. It is important to hold the treat in the right place when teaching this exercise.206–7) to keep him interested for longer. Reward As soon as your dog’s rear end touches the floor.123 Good grounding If you are struggling to keep your dog focused during training sessions. . Take care not to hold it too high above your dog’s nose or too far back. lower your hand so that he can reach it throughout the luring process. increase the value of the treat you are offering (pp. Feed him two or three more treats while he remains sitting.

Knowing that you can recall him even from a distance will give you peace of mind and make walks safer and more enjoyable for you both. Ask a friend to hold your dog’s collar while you show him an enticing training treat and allow him to sniff at it. Having a dog that comes to you when called makes life easier in both home and garden. and enable you to give him more exercise and freedom. Once your dog has learned these. you can build up reliable recalls outside the home as well (pp. 124 Basic training 1 Tempt him Start this exercise somewhere familiar to your dog. 2 .146–9). confident that you can recall him if you need to. ”Come!” Move a short distance (about 2m/6ft) away and crouch down at your dog’s level with your arms open wide. shown here. are easy.Come when called Come when called is an essential lesson. The early stages of the come when called exercise. Call him enthusiastically. It will allow you to let your dog safely off his lead. encouraging him to come towards you.

even if he does not come to you immediately. .106). so that you don’t intimidate him. so he learns to enjoy being with you and will come again when he is called. try using a more interesting treat (p. He may not recognize a louder or deeper call. call your dog only when there is a good chance he will respond immediately. having responded to your call. even when you call in an emergency. Don’t call too often once your dog knows what to do. and praise him warmly. If he is shy. They are useful if your dog is far away and cannot hear you. If your dog does not come to you. This will encourage good habits.” ”Well done!” When your dog reaches you. Slowly progress from crouching (opposite) to standing. Lower your other hand. keep holding his collar as you feed him the treat. turn sideways when you call and avoid direct eye contact. so you can gently take hold of his collar under his chin. coax him towards you. 5 125 Good grounding 4 GOOD PRACTICE When practising this exercise. hold out the treat so that he can see it. Take his collar Holding the treat at his nose height.3 “Always make Lure him in As your dog reaches you. “Come” body signal Dogs learn body signals easily. Keep your call consistent in tone and volume. and lure him towards you. call him only when you have something worthwhile to offer him. Never tell your dog off for coming to you when you’ve called. the reward worthwhile for your dog.

Be aware that the down position can make your dog feel more vulnerable in any situation that makes him insecure. then wait a few seconds before luring him down as above. With your dog sitting (pp. but you will need patience at first to lure your dog into the right position. and allows you to control him in a variety of situations.152–3). Hand signal You can also teach your dog to lie down using a hand signal. bringing the hand with the food in it all the way to the floor so that your dog can follow it. GOOD PRACTICE When first teaching the “down” hand signal (pp. lure his head slowly downward using a treat. If your dog loses concentration. Get his attention.122–3). 2 Lure him down Keep moving the treat slowly downward. teach him to respond to a voice command. he will lie down when he hears the word “down”. teach your dog to lie down in different places. Down is a building block of basic training and allows you to teach advanced exercises such as settle (pp. give a clear hand signal (pp. Allow him to lick and chew a small piece of the treat so he stays focused.110–11). such as in places where other dogs are present. Once he has learned this exercise. Eventually. When your dog has learned the hand signal for down. familiar location to teach this exercise.Down Teaching your dog to lie down on request is a fundamental exercise—it makes living with him easier. Give the command “down” just before you start.114–5). make an exaggerated hand movement. start the process again and feed him the treat just before you reach the point where he gave up previously. then give your hand signal. for example when you have visitors. . Reward him as often for lying down on request as you reward him for sitting and he will do both with equal ease.192–3) and down at a distance (pp.110–11). he will do so in the midst of a wide range of distractions. in various positions in relation to you (pp. Eventually. Replace that treat with another and try again immediately. It is easy to teach. 126 Basic training 1 Get his attention Find a quiet.

.” 127 Good grounding Try again If your dog stands. then hold the treat further away from him so that he has room to lie down without going backwards. Avoid discomfort Dogs with deep. “Only ask your dog to lie down in environments where he feels safe and secure. make a bridge with your legs and lure your dog through. narrow chests or sparse belly fur may find it uncomfortable to lie on hard floors—try using a thick. squashy bed instead. Praise him warmly and reward him with an extra treat while he remains in the down position to let him know that this is what you wanted him to do.3 Reward As soon as your dog’s elbows touch the ground. Under the bridge If you are struggling to teach the down position. ask him to sit again. He will have to lie down to earn his treat. feed him the treat.

Wait Wait is a simple exercise to teach. extending the gap until he will wait for up to two minutes. then leave a short gap before rewarding him.” . Practice this until he waits reliably. Once you have taught him that all he needs to do to get his reward is stay in one place. say “wait”. 1 128 Basic training Sit. try again. When he is sitting and you have his attention. then wait Ask your dog to sit. 2 Reward Reward him well with two or three treats while he stays in place. It is not a very interesting exercise for your dog to learn as he has nothing to do. Continue over several sessions. such as put his food down on the floor or open the door to go out. Teach your dog to wait only when he has learned to sit reliably (pp. “Never leave your dog in the wait position in a potentially dangerous place. but move your hand more slowly as you give the signal. you can begin to teach him to do so while you move around him. A hand signal given quickly may cause him to move. so make sure he is tired and therefore happy to rest in one position when you start teaching. If he moves. and give your hand signal for wait. and will make it easy for you to keep your dog in one position while you do something else.122–3).

. Slowly transfer your weight onto that foot. you can ask him to wait in practical situations. such as running out of the door. Keep your hand signals slow and calm during early training.3 Step slowly back Give your voice cue and hand signal. Take care when moving behind him as dogs often get up when they can no longer follow you easily with their eyes.126–7). when your dog understands what he has to do. then step one foot backwards. Stay down You can also teach this exercise with your dog in the down position (pp.194–5). he will have something exciting to do. Always reward him well in “wait” before you release him. If he moves. Otherwise. his wait will become unreliable as he begins to anticipate the reward associated with being released. 5 GOOD PRACTICE Once your dog understands what you want him to do. On release. Always return to reward him during training. then return and reward your dog. Down is often a more settled position. Distance work Over several sessions. gradually moving further away from your dog. so he knows he has to stay on that spot to receive his treats. for example at a doorway (pp. reposition him and repeat. Hand signal Wait is one of the only exercises where you teach the hand signal from the start. you will be able to move even further away. 4 Circle your dog Continue over several sessions. but step away more slowly.

using an exaggerated movement.122–3). Give the voice cue “stand” just before you lure your dog into the stand. so he learns to hold the position. Gradually lengthen the time he stands before rewarding him. with distractions going on all around. you can develop the luring action into a hand signal. Having a dog that will stand patiently is also invaluable on visits to the vets. Hand signal Once your dog has mastered the stand. and it has many practical applications too. make “stand” the default position by requesting it when most owners would ask their dog to sit.114–5) and. Lure him toward you As your dog moves his head forward to try to reach the treat. If you own a show dog.Stand Teaching your dog to stand when asked is useful for getting him into position if you need to towel him dry. Don’t forget to practise the stand exercise in different places. The stand position is useful if you are planning to show your dog. but bring the treat back to him quickly once he has done so to prevent him moving forwards. such when you want to put a harness on your dog or wipe his muddy feet. . Show dogs are required to stand still for long periods. leave a gap between the voice cue and the hand signal to give him time to respond to the voice cue alone. with your dog in different positions in relation to you (pp. keep it moving slowly away from him until he has to get up and move forward to get to it. When your dog has learned the hand signal. he needs to know how to sit when you ask (pp. eventually. place a tasty treat against his nose so he can lick and nibble it. and then start to move it away slowly. Before you begin training your dog to stand following the stages shown here. 130 Basic training 1 Present a treat With your dog in the sit position. 2 GOOD PRACTICE Move the treat just enough to make your dog stand up to get it.

3

Praise him

As soon as he stands, and before he steps forward, feed him the treat and praise him effusively. Practice over several sessions, gradually flattening your palm and building the lure into a hand signal (below left).

Walking on a loose leash 1
This is one of the most difficult exercises to teach, but it is so rewarding when your dog learns to walk happily beside you on a loose leash. You need lots of patience to achieve this, following and practicing the steps shown here and on pp.134–5.
Taking regular walks with your dog is important for both the mental and physical well-being of your dog, and provides health benefits for you as well. Teach this skill as early in your dog’s life as possible, as a dog that is comfortable walking next to you on a loose leash is a pleasure to walk. Once you have taught this exercise, practice in a variety of locations, with increasing distractions. Then teach him not to pull on the leash (pp.134–5), but to walk nicely wherever he is.

“Heel”
Show your dog another treat and raise it above his head—hold it so he can see it clearly. Get his attention by saying his name and give the voice cue “heel”.

2

132
Basic training

“Gradually extend
the number of paces you take each time.”

1

Position him

Hold the leash in your right hand, and against your body. Hold a tasty treat in your other hand and lure your dog into position alongside your left leg, feeding the treat when your dog is in place.

GOOD PRACTICE
At the beginning of each training session and whenever you are in a new area, reward your dog after only taking one pace until your dog learns what to do. Once your dog is walking beside you, show the hand signal (right) just before you set off. If he moves out of position, stand still and lure him back into place before taking a step forward.

Hand signal

Teach your dog to respond to a hand signal (pp.110–1). A flat palm positioned at your hip is a clear signal for your dog to stay close.

During training, choose which side of you your dog should walk and stick to it to avoid confusion. Once your dog knows what is expected, you can train him to walk on the other side of you if required. It is difficult, at first, to coordinate leash, treats, and dog. Stop and reposition your dog as necessary, rewarding him when he is in the correct position. Only move forward when ready, and praise well when your dog walks close.

4

Practice

Continue in this way, over several sessions, gradually extending the number of paces you take each time before rewarding him.

3

Step forward and reward
Immediately take a pace forward and, as your dog follows, reward him with the treat and lots of praise. Repeat, rewarding after two paces, then three, and so on.

Leash length The leash should hang down slightly from your dog’s collar when standing next to you with the handle held at your waist, but not touch the floor.

No jumping If your dog jumps up to get the treat while you are walking, raise the treat higher and keep walking until he stops jumping, then reward him.

Mind over matter Try not to use the leash to control your dog, and keep the food lure in the hand nearest to your dog so he doesn’t try to walk in front of you.

Walking on a loose leash 2
Training your dog not to pull is a vital part of learning to walk on a loose leash. Before teaching this exercise, ensure that your dog has learned how to walk next to you, and does so easily (pp.132–3).
Whenever you take your dog to a new and exciting place, she is likely to be distracted by the unfamiliar sights and smells around her. Before you can teach her that pulling on the leash is unacceptable in any surroundings, it is essential that she has learned that she has to walk close to you on a loose leash instead (pp.132–3). Start this exercise by walking normally with your dog on a loose leash beside you.

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134
Basic training

Stop abruptly
Watch the leash carefully and stop abruptly when the leash begins to go tight. Keep your hands against your body and resist the pull from your dog.

1

Walk normally

Walk normally until your dog begins to pull ahead. Keep the leash-holding hand held into your middle to give a fixed length of leash.

3

Lure her back into position

Stand still and use a treat to get your dog’s attention. Lure her back into the correct position by your side, facing forward. When she is in the right place, reward her with the treat and praise enthusiastically.

4

Be alert

Watch out for distractions that may cause your dog to pull, such as other dogs, and stop as necessary. If you stop abruptly and reposition every time the leash goes tight, your dog will learn that pulling is not rewarding.

Relax and enjoy
Keep practicing this exercise until your dog has learned not to pull. If she forgets and pulls forward, stop and reposition her immediately. Reward her when she makes an effort to keep the leash loose. You can then relax your hands and give her more freedom.

5

GOOD PRACTICE
Teaching your dog not to pull on the leash when out walking takes time and patience, especially if she has been pulling for some time. Be consistent with your training and expect to stop as many as 40 times during your first walk. You will need to stop less frequently as she learns that pulling is not rewarding.

Too much energy It is easier to teach a well-exercised dog to walk on a loose leash. Take your dog for a run or play games before training to use up excess energy.

Good practice When teaching this exercise, allow extra time for walks so you can practice. If you don’t have time, use a head collar (shown here) or harness.

Retrieve 1 Once your dog has learned to play. you can progress to asking him to bring it back to you (pp. .138–9). 2 Throw the toy Once your dog is excited. It is best to do this in a familiar area. where it is quiet and there are no distractions. The first step is to enthuse your dog with a favorite toy. 136 Basic training 1 Creating excitement Begin by playing with one of your dog’s favorite toys. practising over several sessions until your dog shows instant enthusiasm for running out and picking up the toy whenever it is thrown. and be as enthusiastic as possible to drum up his excitement. throw the toy for him to chase and capture. Keep the toy moving and tease him with the prospect of playing with the toy. teaching him to retrieve items on demand will ensure that he spends more time running after an object than you do. Follow the steps below. Have fun. The key to helping your dog learn the retrieve is to create a sense of enthusiasm and excitement for a favourite toy. Once he has learned to chase and pick up a toy.

or pick it up and repeat steps 1 and 2. praise him and stroke his back and body. 3 137 Good grounding 4 GOOD PRACTICE Some dogs enjoy possessing a toy while others like to chase it. If your dog comes to you. stop all praise. Working out what your dog prefers will help you to make this game more enjoyable. praise him. continuing to do so for as long as he carries it. . avoiding the head and neck. You need to be animated and enjoying yourself. Do not touch the toy. so at this stage avoid giving commands. such as asking your dog to sit first. or out for a walk. Only try this when you are in a good mood and full of energy! Outdoor enthusiasm Try to excite your dog to the same level of enthusiasm whether you are in your backyard. Control reduces enthusiasm. and just try to create as much excitement and enthusiasm for the exercise as possible. Dropped it If your dog drops the toy. Keep the toys you practice the retrieve with special by hiding them from your dog at times when you are not playing. Your attitude during this exercise is important. Either encourage him to pick the toy up by pointing at it and making encouraging noises.“Well done!” As soon as your dog picks up the toy. in the park.

While some dogs retrieve easily.Retrieve 2 When your dog plays enthusiastically with a toy and carries it readily. This exercise builds on the steps learned in Retrieve 1 (pp. use a long training lead to bring her to you. keeping your hands away from her head and neck.138–9) and introduces the “drop” command. “Never chase a dog when you want to get a toy back. it is time to ask her to bring it back to you. If your dog refuses to come near you while holding the toy. It is important to be patient throughout your training sessions as you can easily teach your dog to avoid you if you try to pry the toy from her mouth before she is ready to release it. Teaching your dog to retrieve forms the basis for more advanced training exercises. Stroke her body.” . such as chase recall (pp. 1 Encourage retrieval 3 Reel her in Throw a toy and encourage your dog to pick it up. Continue to praise her until she begins to lose interest in holding the toy. Then move backwards enthusiastically coaxing her to come towards you. any dog can be taught this skill with sufficient practice. “Good girl!” 2 Praise well Keep still and let your dog approach you. coaxing her forward as you do so.154–5).

then throw the other toy for her to fetch or feed the treat. . If your dog is attached to a long line while you are teaching this exercise. Most dogs are faster and more agile than their owners. you can teach her to drop it on command. 4 Letting go 139 Good grounding Trade and treat As soon as she drops the toy. You need to build her trust to get her to bring the toy to you and give it up willingly. especially if she has had it taken away from her on a previous occasion. and wait until she decides to let go. don’t grab it from her. praise her warmly. or other dogs close by. pointing at the ground. or offer her a treat. continuing your praise. Tease her with another toy. vulnerable people. say “drop”. Dogs are very sensitive to our body language and she will instinctively try to protect her toy.“Drop!” Once your dog comes to you readily with the toy in her mouth. as it will only delay her learning. At the same time. Make sure there are no children. 5 GOOD PRACTICE If your dog comes to you with a toy in her mouth. so resist the urge to grab the toy out of your dog’s mouth. Never chase a dog when you want her to give up a toy. and you are unlikely to catch up. be gentle as you bring her towards you and take care not to get tangled in it. Don’t grab Teaching the retrieve requires patience.

and to pick up objects other than toys. drop one end of the line so he is free to go after the toy. to deliver the toy to your hand rather than dropping it on the ground. Use the line to hold your dog back if he tries to move forward. and put the toys away (180–1). ask your dog to fetch and. “Always praise when your dog brings something to you. 140 Basic training 2 Retrieve Once the toy has landed. you can refine his skills by teaching him to wait while a toy is thrown. at the same time.128–9). A dog that learns to give toys directly to your hand is much easier to play with. Give a clear hand signal and ask your dog to wait (pp. Teaching your dog to wait while a toy is thrown will give you more control in times of excitement.176–7). such as carry the groceries (pp. Throw the toy a short distance.Developing the retrieve Once your dog will retrieve well. Learning to pick up stationary objects and objects other than toys lays the foundation for further interesting exercises. fetch the leash (178–9).” . 1 Wait Loop a length of line through your dog’s collar and hold both ends.

Then try the appetizing exchange (above) again. Play a retrieval game with it first. . and praise him as he does so. Your dog will soon learn that he will only earn the treat if he delivers the ball directly into your hand. ask him to “fetch” again. then place the item on the floor and ask him to fetch. Appetizing exchange To teach your dog to deliver the toy to your hand. including finding a lost set of keys in a field. If your dog drops the ball before you have had a chance to take it.”Fetch!” Teach your dog to fetch a non-moving object. substituting the ball for a tasty treat. and place your other hand underneath to catch the ball. ask him to come right up to you. Work up to asking him to wait to retrieve when he is full of energy and very excited about the prospect of giving chase. Tease him and play a fun game. start by tying a soft item to it so that it feels similar. Search and retrieve You can train your dog to retrieve any number of things and in a variety of situations. When he is within reach. make sure he is well exercised and throw an unexciting toy a short distance. Praise him while he holds the ball to let him know this is what you wanted. GOOD PRACTICE When you first ask your dog to wait before fetching. offer a tasty treat. Good grounding Tease To teach your dog to pick up something other than a toy.

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Advanced training 4 Developing skills Showing off Housework Best behavior .

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and stops him being a nuisance to other walkers. but it is really worth the effort. keeps him in check and could even save his life. takes time. and to sit at a distance. Training him to check in with you before running to meet strangers or other dogs gives you more control. REALITY TRAINING . This section builds on your basic training. whatever he is doing or whatever is going on around him.Developing skills Well-trained dogs make walks and daily exercise sessions a pleasure. especially if he has strong chase instincts. and helps Training basic exercises in real-life you to teach your dog some scenarios will result in a dog that knows how to behave well in all really useful life skills. situations and circumstances. Teaching your dog to come back when called. Educating your dog to stop chasing.

Remember to reward generously during your training sessions to make the experience as positive as possible for your dog. praise her well and feed her a tasty treat. 1 Play a game 3 Recall and reward Ask a friend to play an exciting game with your dog and her favourite toy a few metres from where you are standing. until your dog regularly comes to you as soon as you call. and then on walks. “Practice this exercise at home. Training your dog to return to you whatever the circumstances is a valuable and potentially life-saving command for your dog to master.124–5).” . When she reaches you. Keep calling until your dog comes to you—it is important that both of you ignore her until she does. she needs to stop playing with the toy and hide it from the dog’s sight. As soon as your friend hears you call. so it is important to instill a strong desire to come whenever you call in order to combat this innate curiosity. Dogs are curious by nature.Advanced recalls 1 Once you have taught the basic recall (pp. it is important to teach your dog to come back to you even when she is busy doing other things. so that she learns to respond to you no matter what the situation. “Come!” 2 Interrupt play Call your dog loudly to interrupt the play.

Slowly work up to calling when she is holding the toy in her mouth as her recall reliability improves. Some dogs may prefer a more exciting game as a reward for coming when called. as your dog deserves to be rewarded generously and consistently for leaving an enjoyable game. allow her to return to her game. rather than an end to her enjoyment. Hot dog! Because this exercise involves energy-sapping games. practise in short sessions so your dog does not get exhausted. 5 GOOD PRACTICE In your first few training sessions.108). so that she learns that coming to you is just a pleasant interruption. Make sure you have irresistible treats for this exercise. call when your companion is holding the toy but your dog is not touching it.4 Release When your dog has successfully responded to your call. and so will begin to leave her play as soon as you start to call. Remember to keep training sessions short so your dog does not lose focus. If you are struggling to make this exercise work. . 147 Developing skills Rehearse After a few practice sessions. lower the excitement level of the game and find more enticing treats (p. your dog will learn that her game is over until she has come to you when you’ve called. particularly on hot days.

call your dog when you are close to him as it is more likely that he will respond. Doing this gives you a reliable recall. and then let him go and play again. Some dogs prefer games with toys to treats. the next step is to teach him to come back from other exciting activities. and don’t forget to praise your dog well when he does what you ask. recalls. It will also make walks safer and allow him more freedom. Use whatever rewards work during training sessions and future Use a long line If your dog will not leave other dogs when you call. call him from further away and increase the number and types of distractions competing for his attention. In this way. As he gets better at recalls. Reward him generously when he does. When you start practicing this exercise. you can slowly build up the level of distraction until he comes back to you regardless. then call him excitedly. use a long line to allow him to exercise safely. such as interesting smells and playing with other dogs. Take care not to get tangled up in the line. use a long line to bring him to you. .Advanced recalls 2 Once your dog comes back easily when you call him away from a game with a toy. Begin with distractions that are easy to break away from. GOOD PRACTICE You need your best treats for these exercises as you will have to compete for your dog’s attention with very exciting events. Safety first If your dog is not yet trained or he is in a place where he could get into trouble. reward him well. and only call if there is a good chance that your dog will come back to you. moving away from him and putting lots of effort into getting him to return. 148 Advanced training Distract him Wait until your dog is really interested in a scent. such as sniffing. no matter what your dog happens to be doing at the time.

so it is unlikely that you will be able to call your dog away from these games during the first fun-filled minutes. Then let him return to his games with the other dog. to ensure success next time you call. moving back and rattling food bags or squeaking a toy to attract him. 2 Successful call Call at a moment when play has subsided and your dog can be distracted. Allow them to play and wait until the excitement levels are lower. Call loudly and enthusiastically. 149 Developing skills 3 Reward well Reward your dog really well for coming to you. together with plenty of praise. . Use your highest-value food treats and games.1 Playtime Play with another dog is very exciting.

If your dog does not return immediately.124–5).Checking in Teaching your dog to check in with you before running to greet strangers or other dogs while out on walks allows you to control such situations and avoid any problems that may otherwise arise. call her back to you. Before you begin teaching your dog to check in with you. 150 Advanced training “Call your dog if you see unfamiliar dogs or people approaching. Training your dog to return to you before running to meet new people or other animals will help to keep her safe from any potentially dangerous dogs and will also prevent her from causing undue stress when encountering people who may be wary of dogs. 2 Recall Before your dog gets too close to the approaching dog and owner.” 1 Really sociable A well-socialized dog will want to run and greet other dogs and their owners she sees while you are exercising her. . she must have learned the basic recall exercise (pp. work on her recall reliability by calling her to you as soon as you see someone approaching in the distance.

and keep your dog away to prevent her from scaring the other dog. It is better if dogs meet off leash if possible.”Good girl!” Reward your dog with effusive praise and her favorite treats or a game for returning to you. It is usually best if the dogs are allowed to meet off leash and are able to sniff each other. put her on a leash so that you can control her movements and prevent her from jumping up on the other person. However. 3 151 Developing skills 4 Careful greeting If you think it is appropriate. who is restricted. Similarly. especially if she is naturally friendly with either people or other dogs. keep your dog on the leash and keep her gaze focused on you until the distraction has passed. if the other dog is on a leash. Always reward your dog well for responding to your call. . attach a leash to your dog. you can now allow your dog to greet the other dog and her owner. Ignoring others If you don’t think a meeting is appropriate. Practice this exercise until your dog automatically checks in with you when she sees someone approaching. if your dog is likely to jump up. GOOD PRACTICE This technique is particularly useful if your dog is large or looks intimidating.

114–5).Sit at a distance Sit at a distance is easy to train once you have taught your dog to sit on cue.122–3). As your dog learns the concept of sitting at a distance. Your dog may experience confusion at first. and it is a useful way to get him to stop when he is away from you. because previous rewards came for sitting near to you. GOOD PRACTICE The sit at a distance exercise can be used in emergencies when you want your dog to stop immediately—for example. 1 152 Advanced training Ask him to sit With a friend holding your dog’s leash. This helps to keep him safe. and could save his life in an emergency. and with distractions going on around you (pp. where he will find it more difficult to concentrate. Always go to reward him where he is sitting. Safety stop Being able to stop your dog successfully when he is approaching danger is important. or if a car unexpectedly approaches. stand just in front and ask him to sit. either in front or beside you. Remember to begin training this exercise in a quiet location with no distractions. Give the hand signal to help him get it right. It is also useful when it is not safe to recall him. You can teach your dog to lie down at a distance in the same way. You need to be patient to give him time to understand what you are asking him to do. This exercise can be taught once your dog will sit readily on cue (pp. and reward him when he sits. again using the hand signal and rewarding him when he sits. if a child nearby has become frightened of him running around. . begin training in areas that offer more distractions. 2 Move back Take two paces back from your dog and repeat stage one. so he learns to keep still. This is a more reliable position for some dogs. in any situation.

but start again from stage one when you do so.“The sit at a distance exercise can be used in emergencies. He will soon learn the reward comes from you when he sits. .” 153 Practice Progress slowly. you can dispense with your friend’s assistance. 5 Developing skills 3 4 Lure but don’t reward If your dog does not respond. Now reward Move forward quickly to reward him.122–3). Eventually. gradually moving further away from your dog over several sessions. ask your friend to lure him into a sit (pp. but not to feed the treat to your dog at this point.

This exercise is an important lesson for all dogs. Begin by teaching him a chase recall using toys. to ensure that you have complete control when you really need it. Throw the toy at a height and speed that allows your friend to catch it if necessary. You can then progress to practicing in real life situations. near things your dog is likely to chase. such as bicycles or other animals. . “Leave!” 154 Advanced training 1 Line up Ask a friend to help you. and progress to other things he may chase. Position her so that she is facing you at a distance from where she can easily catch a ball that you throw.Chase recall Being able to recall your dog from a chase is essential if you want him to be under complete control and safe to let off the leash. 2 Throw the ball Tease your dog with the toy. then throw it past your friend for your dog to chase. Teaching the chase recall with toys gives you the foundation of this exercise. and especially for breeds in which the chase instinct is accentuated.

tease him with a toy he prefers and throw it in the opposite direction for him to chase. he will become hesitant about running out after the ball and you will lose his enthusiasm. the opportunities to learn the chase recall are limited. Use a training line for safety until you are sure of success. If you stop him more than this. GOOD PRACTICE Only stop your dog running out after the toy once in every five throws at random. As he stops. Don’t run your dog to the point of exhaustion. “As the toy leaves your hand.” 4 Throw another ball When your dog looks back at you to get help in finding the ball. shout ‘leave!’. Up to 20 chases are enough for one session depending on the fitness level of the dog and how warm the weather is. set up other chase scenarios so you can practice recalling him.3 Catch For one in five throws at random. As the toy leaves your hand. . Because you can only stop him four times in 20 chases. shout “leave!”. Step forward and stop him verbally. throw the toy so that your friend catches it and tucks it out of sight. for example with joggers or bicycles. so be patient and keep practicing until he learns what to do. Once your dog has learned to stop chasing a toy as soon as you call. throw another toy. “Stop!” Achieve the same goal by stopping your dog as he runs past you towards the toy.

regardless of distractions. don’t expect him to do so when another dog is present. Start far enough away for him to concentrate. Training your dog in the safety of your home is a good place to begin. You need to train your dog in a range of situations. and gradually move closer to them. However. this is the only place where your dog will behave well. teach him to respond to your cues in a variety of places. so he learns to be responsive everywhere. your dog’s attention while other dogs play nearby takes practice. .132–3) until he remembers what to do. and reward him well for doing so. Begin with small distractions and progress to larger ones. Practice with friends until he is reliable. if this is the only place you teach in. Stay close Getting. Also teach him to respond when he would rather be doing something else. with different things happening around him. Teach him as before (pp.Learning with distractions Once your dog has learned basic lessons at home. 156 Advanced training Back to basics Even if your dog usually walks beside you on the leash without pulling. Wait for greeting Instill good manners with visitors by keeping your dog on a leash and teaching him to sit and wait until you are ready for him to greet them. and keeping. using rewards to lessen the appeal of the other dogs.

which can mean the dogs do not respond in real-life situations. If necessary. “Many owners only train their dogs in one location. you may need to habituate him to that situation until he is at ease there before starting training. remember to start the exercise again from scratch as if you were teaching it for the first time.” Tricks anywhere If you ask your dog to perform a trick in a different place with other people watching. temporarily move further away from the distractions until he is able to concentrate. but other members of the family may need to teach him from the beginning. so he knows what to do next time. until you are ready for him to jump out. Practice this until he waits automatically. This could help prevent an accident. Patiently return to the basics. 157 Developing skills GOOD PRACTICE When you begin practicing in a different place with distractions. and gently insist that your dog does as you ask. Be patient and consistent. he may forget what to do. . Start again Your dog may readily respond to the cues you give.Car safety Teach your dog to sit and wait when the car door is opened. If your dog finds working in some environments stressful.

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FINE PERFORMANCE . resulting in a more relaxed. rewarded wellifattheir efforts are the end. Once dogs are accomplished at a and give you a more versatile trick. especially when in front of an appreciative audience. These exercises help to use up your dog’s mental energy and give him a purpose. This section will further improve your training skills. especially dog that knows many useful cues.Showing off Dogs enjoy their owner’s laughter and excitement. contented animal. and both you and your dog will have lots of fun learning the tricks in this section. they really seem to enjoy the performance. Once dogs have learned the tricks well. and can be added to a training session to give variety and to lighten the mood. they will enjoy performing it. They are impressive when shown to friends.

. Your dog will need time to think things through. and encourage him to paw at your hand by moving it around at floor level. with distractions. begin to move your hand slowly off the ground over several sessions. Reward any slight movements of his paw immediately. and this exercise is a good place to start your trick training. A wave can make a big dog look friendly and less intimidating to children and it is also a great way to say goodbye to guests. 4 Higher still When you raise the treat higher than your dog can reach. and wait patiently for him to touch your hand with his paw. you will need to be patient to get him to raise his paw. Teaching the wave exercise requires patience. let your dog smell the treat. go back a step. Reward any slight movement of his paw at first and ask for more in later sessions. patiently reposition him and try again. Keep sessions short and successful and. if necessary. “Keep sessions short… if required. or does something similarly undesirable.” 2 3 Rewarding touch Once your dog knows he has to touch your hand with his paw for you to release the treat. In later sessions. Train in different places. And wave Practice. so don’t be tempted to rush through the stages. and with your dog in varying positions in relation to you. 1 Incentive to paw Wrapping a treat in your hand. raising your hand even higher and rewarding “waves” immediately. go back a step in order to end with something easy. introduce a hand signal and voice cue. If your dog jumps up to get the treat.Wave It is easy to teach your dog to wave.

161 Showing off .

luring him in the other direction until he understands what to do. Move slowly so she can follow you easily. “spin” and “twirl” – to avoid confusion. Practice this routine together over several training sessions. the spin is a very useful warm-up exercise before competing in active dog sports (pp. Take care with young. Make sure you teach your dog to spin in both directions to prevent her from becoming dizzy and also to avoid muscle building up on one side only. Most dogs really enjoy performing the spin and will do it readily when asked by their owners. choose a different word for each direction – for example. active dogs who may spin obsessively once they find out how much fun this activity is. start from stage one again. you will be able to build your lure into a hand signal (pp.232–3). 162 Advanced training 1 Follow the lure Holding a treat just in front of your dog’s nose. Eventually. gradually phasing out the halfway reward until you only reward a full spin. If you want to put the action on voice cue (pp. 3 4 Spin! Clockwise Once your dog fully understands how to spin in one direction and does so readily.110–11). Anticlockwise When training your dog to spin the other way. Reward her well. facing you. Reward the full circle Keep luring your dog round until she has moved full circle and is back in the starting position. so she understands it is worth her while to follow the lure again next time. 2 Reward halfway Reward your dog as she passes the halfway point of the circle.110–11). try to build in more spins before rewarding your dog. . you can start to train him to spin in the other direction as well. GOOD PRACTICE Over several sessions.Spin An easy trick to teach. lure her around and away from you in a circle.

163 Showing off .

so that when your dog lifts her paw. Teach your dog to respond to a voice command to help her distinguish the high five from the wave. 2 Open one hand Hold out your other hand just above the floor. It is a good idea to teach your dog to wave (pp. as some dogs can find it quite threatening to have their paw lifted and held. Move the hand with the treat to encourage her. GOOD PRACTICE When your dog successfully performs a high five and touches your hand with her paw. raising your hand a little higher each time. you will need to kneel down or crouch. Practice the high five in a range of different places and with a variety of distractions going on around you. then hold up your hand as before. gently remind her by going through the stages above. and reward her well as soon as she makes contact with her paw. as this may cause her to withdraw it. wait a moment. as the early stages of training are similar.High five The high five is a favorite trick for many dogs and their owners. Once she can wave with ease. Always reward her well for putting her paw against your hand. it lands on your open hand instead of the hand holding the treat. encouraging her to paw at your hand as she tries to get the treat. If your dog forgets what you are asking her to do in an unfamiliar location or in front of an audience. Crouching high five At first. Reward her as soon as she makes contact and practice over several sessions Practice this motion. you can build on her skills with this exercise. 1 3 Raise your hand Hold a treat to the floor Wrap a treat in your hand and move it about in front of her. Say “high five”. It is advisable to teach this in preference to shaking a paw. you will be able to teach him to “high five” while you stand. As your dog becomes more proficient.160–1) before attempting the high five. take care that you support the paw lightly rather than trying to hold on to it. Reward her well. .

Start to extend this gap so that her paw is pressed against your palm for longer periods. introduce a pause between contact and reward. 5 .165 Showing off 4 High five! Repeat the exercise over several sessions. until she learns to place her paw against your raised hand to get her reward. building in the high five signal with your hand upright and palm facing your dog. Timely offering Once your dog readily places her paw against your hand.

Play dead Play dead is a fun trick to show friends and. She may fall fast or “die” slowly. so that your dog’s head turns and her nose moves towards her tail. Reviving her with “medicine”. Using a large tasty treat. . lure her head slowly around to the side. Wait until she is “dead” again before rewarding. it is usually quite easy to teach her to lie flat on her side and completely still. rewards the behavior and gives the exercise a positive conclusion. it takes more time and repetition for her to learn how to fall flat from a standing position.” 1 Relax Ask your dog to lie down. Be patient and let your dog lick and chew at the treat until she relaxes and rolls her hips to one side. Allow her to chew the treat and let her relax until her weight is resting on one hip and one front leg. especially if your dog will lie motionless with her head down and tail still. Once your dog has learned the down position (pp. when combined with a hand signal in the shape of a gun and a spoken “bang!”. 2 Head swivel Slowly move the treat around.126–7). in the form of a tasty treat. 166 Advanced training “Don’t laugh or react if your dog lifts her head up. However. can look impressive.

If none is forthcoming. Practice over several sessions until you can lure her into position and she lies flat while you get up. As soon as she plays dead for the first time. Repeat these stages until your dog learns what is required of her. Wait until she is “dead” again before rewarding. After several sessions. 4 Play dead GOOD PRACTICE Don’t laugh or react if your dog lifts her head off the floor. reward her with a treat and praise her well. then wait for the count of two for a response. use a treat to lure her into down (don’t say anything else at this stage). Reward her. teach her to play dead from a stand. then into a “lie flat” position. Feed the treat and praise her gently. This should be easy with regular practice. Progress to teaching your dog to play dead from a standing position. then stand up. 167 Showing off With your dog in the down position. say “bang!” and give your hand signal while standing. then reward her again so she knows that you want her to lie flat and stay still. .3 Praise gently Slowly move the treat in an arc in front of your dog until her head is on the floor and she is lying flat. Ask her to “stay” and feed another treat. Give your voice cue and hand signal as above. practicing again later. give the cue and wait for a response— help her with the lure only if necessary. Falling down Once your dog has learned to respond to the cue while lying down. Then lure her into position and reward her well. then end the session.

2 168 Advanced training Throw the ball Toss the ball in a low arc over the pole. Don’t forget to release the leash as your dog races after the toy and jumps. pointing to the pole so she learns to follow your hand signal.Jump Teaching your dog to jump is a really useful training exercise. Start slowly and build up gradually to develop your dog’s confidence. With your dog on a lightweight leash. . so only teach this exercise to dogs over 12 months old who are fully developed. Hip and elbow dysplasia are common in pedigree dogs and often go undetected until later in life. Over several sessions. If your dog is reluctant to jump. Release the leash as she moves to fetch the toy. gradually raise the pole higher. 3 Raise the jump and try again Raise the pole by 2 in (5 cm) and repeat the first two stages. Begin by placing the jump pole on the ground. and stepping forward to encourage her. Ask your dog to “jump”. making life easier for you as you will not have to lift her over any obstacles. ask your vet for advice. 1 Excite her For this exercise. tease her with a ball or a toy until she is excited and wants to chase after it. It is important to protect a young puppy’s growing joints and limbs. you will need a jump pole and adjustable stands. Make sure that your dog is physically fit and has no joint or health problems before asking her to jump.

Jumping is a necessary skill for many dog sports. such as gates and fences. Go back to where you started and try again. To build a good foundation for later speed and accuracy. Reward a successful jump at the lower height before you gradually raise the pole again to make it harder. he will be able to negotiate real life obstacles. make sure that she starts far enough back to clear the jump. If your dog falls when jumping. Jump! Once your dog learns what is required. use the leash to prevent her. dispense with the leash.234–7). and uses unusual muscles. then throw the ball later as a reward. Encourage her to do a few jumps and then wait until the next training session before you ask her to do more. When she no longer tries to go around the jump. particularly agility (pp. take things slowly and ensure success at each height. lower the jump considerably before trying again. Useful trick Once your dog has learned how to jump. Ask for no more than three jumps per session and remember to get her excited before you throw the toy. Jumping is very tiring for your dog. so keep sessions short. . 5 GOOD PRACTICE As you ask your dog to jump a little bit higher. encourage her to jump first.4 No running out If your dog tries to go around or under the jump.

walking toward the message’s recipient if your dog seems confused. Never get angry with him or scold him for dropping the paper. Teach this exercise indoors over several sessions. Ask your friend to call your dog and urge him to move toward her.136–9). with the other person in different rooms in the house.Take a message As its name implies.136–9). this exercise involves training your dog to pass a message between you and another person. Then build up longer distances. and is great fun. get his attention and hand him the message to hold. 2 Give him the message Once your dog has learned to take hold of the message and carry it in his mouth. “If your dog drops the 170 Advanced training message. and ask a person your dog is familiar with to assist. pointing to her and saying “take it!” enthusiastically. Help your dog if necessary in the early stages. It is simple to teach once your dog has learned to retrieve and give things up (pp. encourage him to pick it up again. Expect to get through lots of paper. Start by using a short distance between you and the person who will receive the message. . but practice until he will retrieve the “message” from the floor and bring it back to you readily. 3 En route 1 Fetch games Begin by getting your dog used to the feel of paper in his mouth by playing fetch games (pp.” Encourage him in the direction of a friend nearby.

eventually. Never get angry or scold him for dropping the paper. Once he does so.4 “Good job!” Ask the recipient to exchange the message for a treat as soon as your dog reaches her. encourage him to pick it up again. . praise him continuously while he grasps the paper in his mouth. teach your dog the names of different people by practicing repeatedly until he knows which person to give the message to when everyone is sitting in the same room. making sure that he knows how clever he is. so that he knows he has done the right thing. You can then ask him to take the message to a named Make it harder Practice over several sessions until your dog knows what to do. Once he has learned everyone’s names. sliding the paper across the floor if necessary to make it more exciting for him to pick up. She should then feed the treat and praise him well. locating and giving a message to an individual elsewhere in the house will be easy. individual. keeping the treat out of sight until he is very close. in other parts of the house. A more advanced version of this game is to teach your dog the names of other family members or friends. asking her to hide around the corner and. First. Then gradually increase the distance between you and the message recipient. 171 Showing off 5 GOOD PRACTICE If your dog drops the “message”.

GOOD PRACTICE At first. you must be on hand to help her if she can’t find the toy. 172 Advanced training 1 ”Fetch!” Start by playing fun retrieval games (pp. Once you have taught your dog to find an item hidden somewhere in your home. you can relax while your dog hunts for it. these games are fun and will help to use up her energy. then wave the toy in front of her to get her attention. and don’t tease her by asking her to search for something that isn’t there. you no longer need to point. because they require a good sense of smell. pointing towards the hiding place to encourage your dog to search the area that you are indicating.Find the lost toy Hide and seek games are very easy for your dog to play. Hide the toy Ask your dog to sit and wait. until she can find a toy hidden anywhere in the room. Once he hunts for the toy on the cue “find it!”. so that your dog knows exactly what to do and becomes an enthusiastic hunter.136–41) with a new toy in short sessions over several days. Slowly reduce the help you offer her over several “Find it!” Point your dog in the right direction by using a direct signal. before hiding it somewhere nearby where she can find it quite easily. Once she knows how to play them. you can progress to hiding a variety of toys in different areas around your home. . Over time. Go into the room and give the “find it!” cue. “Reduce the help you give until she can find a toy hidden anywhere. However. Make the search more challenging gradually.” 2 sessions. you will have to help your dog to find a toy that is hidden in another room. until it becomes your dog’s favorite toy and she runs to fetch it wherever you decide to throw it. This is a good game to play inside.

. When she gives you the toy. 3 173 4 Showing off Praise her Ask your dog to bring the toy to you and let her know how clever she is as she does so. reward her with a treat and lots of praise before hiding it again. pointing her in the right direction to help her. 5 .”Find it!” Ask your dog to “find it!” pointing her towards the hiding place to direct her. for her to find. Encourage her to keep searching until she has found the hidden toy. Make it harder You can gradually build up many different hiding places for the toy in rooms around your home. this time in a different place. and then be sure to praise her well as soon as she has located it.

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training our dogs to help us with daily chores is a good way to make them feel included. WILLING WORKER . you will learn valuable training skills. This section shows you how to teach your dog some simple exercises that will allow him to help you with the housework—for example. As much of our lives are based in and around our homes. This also creates more free time. picking up his own toys. As you teach the exercises. which you can spend with them. It will ensure that they are ready and be useful to you.Housework Dogs thrive on a sense of belonging and shared activity. You can then build on these skills to teach your dog to be involved in other projects and Dogs really enjoy it when they tasks around the home that will are rewarded well for working. willing to help you with the chores. and fun for him.

136–41). Over several sessions. “When he has learned to carry groceries.Carry the groceries It is really useful to have some assistance when you have too much to carry. you can extend it to other jobs in the home. Once your dog knows how to fetch and pick up toys when asked (pp. When he has learned this. teach him to help you with other household chores. slowly build up to asking him to walk with you while he holds the bottle. Start off by making it easy for him to learn to pick up awkward but manageable objects by playing retrieve games with a variety of empty packets and containers. teaching him to carry in the groceries is relatively easy. and your dog is sure to enjoy helping you with this simple household task. he will learn what is required and you will be able to hand him objects to hold rather than throwing them for him to pick up. such as carrying in the laundry. 3 Make it harder Once he can carry empty bottles and packets.” . 1 176 Advanced training Play a game Tease your dog with an ordinary household object. Once he has. progress to asking him to carry full ones. praise him enthusiastically. such as an empty plastic bottle. It will strengthen your relationship and make him feel valued. Keep moving it around until he wants to grab hold of it. 2 Praise him Roll the bottle along the floor to encourage your dog to chase and pick it up. such as carrying in the laundry. Over several sessions. to get him interested in playing a game.

and it will help to use up your dog’s energy and keep him entertained. Once your dog fetches and carries items easily. Make it easy for him to understand what you want. and praise and reward him well. such as a lightweight bag. Giving your dog more opportunities to chew an item will eventually stop him doing so as he becomes familiar with it. Take the item he is carrying from him. ask him to “fetch” and reduce the distance. Useful hound You can make your dog feel really useful—and put your feet up in the evening—by training him to fetch your newspaper or your slippers. ask him to help you around the house. 177 Housework ”Thank you!” Ask him to wait while you put down your bags. finding and bringing different things to you. 5 GOOD PRACTICE If your dog chews the object you give him. just as we use our hands to touch things. or anything too heavy or sharp. . Praise frequently. Most dogs love working in this way.4 Carry the groceries Progress to asking him to carry an easy item. If he drops it. then praise him really well and quickly find a tasty treat to reward him. Dogs use chewing as a way of exploring an object. let him play with another empty packet of a similar texture. Don’t give him breakable things to carry. over a short distance.

he may even learn to anticipate your request. You can begin teaching him this assignment by playing some exciting retrieve games with the leash. fetching it without being asked to do so whenever he sees you putting on your coat or preparing to go out. 2 Full length Once your dog can carry a folded and tied leash. Rewarding your dog with a walk every time he responds to your request to fetch his leash will soon have him racing to get it. place it on the ground near its usual hanging or storage place and ask him to “fetch”. Over several sessions. but he will improve with practice. “Fetch!” . Repeat the exercise over several sessions in this location. he may find it more difficult to carry and may tread on the trailing end. 3 Encourage him When your dog can carry the leash succesfully. 1 178 Advanced training Folded and fastened Make it easy for your dog to pick up the leash and carry it in his mouth by tying it in a knot. practice throwing it and ask him to “fetch” until he readily retrieves it. It will give him something fun to do while you get ready to go out for a walk. After a while. Initially.136–41). Reward him well when he brings it to you.Fetch the leash Teaching your dog to fetch his leash is easy once he has learned to pick up toys and other items (pp. play some games with it untied.

or giving in and taking him for a walk when he does this will only result in him doing it more often and. in anticipation of a walk. this will become a nuisance. Laughing. You should always try to keep your dog’s leash in the same place. make sure that you tell him what a good boy he is and praise him well. you should take it without praising or rewarding him and then return it to where he found it. and can fetch it easily when you ask him to. Reward him with one of his favorite treats and then take him out for a walk to celebrate his success. 5 “Reward your dog with a walk every time he fetches his leash—he will soon race to get it. Muted Fetching and holding the leash is a good skill to teach if your dog is likely to bark with excitement at the thought of a walk. Repeat until he gives up bringing it to you. This might frighten him and prevent him pulling at the leash again. with the clip end close to the ground. This will prevent the clip landing on your dog’s nose when he pulls it down. If your dog fetches the leash when you haven’t asked for it. It’s not possible to bark and hold the leash! . and make an effort to play more with him or take him out for walks more often. eventually. Loop the leash.“Thank you!” 4 Leash position Praise him When your dog brings the leash to you. over the peg or handle on which it usually hangs. However. so that he knows exactly where it is.” GOOD PRACTICE Make sure that you hang your dog’s leash on something secure. so that it won’t fall on him when he pulls at it or moves in any way. Ask him to “fetch”. so take note that he wanted to go for a walk when you didn’t ask him. scolding. he is trying to tell you something.

Repeat over several sessions until she learns to do this easily. She will enjoy doing this if you reward her well for her efforts. Position yourself so that the box is between you and your dog. hold out your hand over the box and ask your dog to deliver the toy into your hand.136–41) and practice until it is easy for her to fetch items that are lying on the floor. This trick looks impressive and is really useful.Put the toys away Many toys may get scattered over the floor in the course of playing games with your dog. especially when visitors are expected and you have little time to clean before they arrive.” . thereby making her come toward the box to get to you. Reward her well. so this trick requires patient teaching and plenty of practice. “The reward on offer must outweigh the pleasure of holding on to the toy. Placing a toy inside a box is not as natural a behavior for a dog as taking it out. 2 Bring the toy As she comes closer. 1 180 Advanced training ”Come!” Throw a toy for your dog to fetch and call her to you as soon as she picks it up. It makes sense to train her to pick up her own toys and put them away. Teach your dog to retrieve first (pp.

Do not get angry or pressure her into doing it—just ask her nicely. reward her really well with treats and praise. If your dog takes the toy out of the box again. Repeat the steps above until your dog understands that she has to drop the toy into the box to be rewarded. you can gradually move further away from the box.3 4 181 Housework Find the treat When she comes to you holding the toy and is over the box. She will have to drop the toy into the box in order to find the treat. It can take a long time for some dogs to learn to perform this trick successfully. ask him to put trash in the can or dirty laundry in the basket. withhold the treat and praise.206–7). GOOD PRACTICE If your dog drops the toy on the way to the box. make sure that the reward you are offering outweighs the pleasure of holding on to the toy (pp. Trash collection Once your dog has learned the principle of picking items up. giving her the cue “pick up” as you send her for the toy. so you must be patient and keep gently reminding your dog what you want her to do. Once she has learned this. When she lifts her head after a fruitless search. . Practice this. Reward her with tastier treats or a favorite toy. Reward him well. Put the toys away Ask your dog to “pick up” but do not put any treats in the box. drop a treat into the box. and ask her to “fetch” again.

” . 2 Place the treat “Spend time making GOOD PRACTICE Eventually. then wait (pp. this a pleasant experience for your dog with treats and lots of praise.128–9). Try to send her from a direction that allows her to locate the treat while standing on her bed. start slowly. as your dog understands what you want when you ask her to “go to bed”. such as when you have visitors who do not like dogs. even when there are more interesting things going on around her. but out of her sight. but it can be tricky getting your dog to comply if she prefers to be with you. you can dispense with the treat behind her bed altogether. or ask a friend to hold her. This is easy to teach. Make sure that she responds to your request. and that the reward outweighs the enjoyment she would get from doing what she prefers to do. 182 Advanced training ”Go to bed!” 1 Send your dog forward to find the treat with the cue “go to bed”. so that it is within easy reach. Steadily build up your dog’s compliance by asking her to go to her bed and stay there. and then place it behind her bed. or tackling tasks that require concentration. or when you are eating.Go to bed This is a useful exercise for occasions when you want your dog out of the way in a safe place. Show your dog that you have a tasty treat. and reward her only for lying down on the bed. To teach her to respond in any circumstances. asking her to go to bed when she would rather not. dealing with a baby. Ask your dog to sit.

so that you build up the skill more gradually. Say her name to get her attention. Spend some time making this a pleasant experience with treats and fuss. so that she turns around to face you. give her something interesting to chew. you should reward her well for her good behavior. so that she has a good reason to be there. Once your dog is reliably going to her bed when you ask her to. “Good girl!” 4 If your dog refuses to go to bed. Remember to go over to her periodically to reward her again for staying in place. gently insist that she does as you ask. Progress over several sessions. gradually increasing the distance between you and the bed. so that she will be less tempted to come looking for you. Soft option Make sure that your dog’s bed is comfortable and not too far from where you will be. Distract her To increase the chances that she will stay on her bed. . and staying there. but make sure you ask in less distracting circumstances next time. then ask her to lie down. Enjoyable experience Praise her well for lying down on her bed.3 Lie down As soon as your dog has eaten the treat. move toward the bed.

2 Swap pen for paper Attach a sticky note to your hand. point. so you need plenty of patience. attaching it first to the palm of your hand before progressing to a door. . Continue practicing this over several sessions until he will run to touch the end of the pen wherever it is held. Ask your dog to “close the door” and wait for him to touch it with his nose. you will be successful. Once he does this reliably.Shut the door Teaching your dog to shut doors is both useful and impressive. but by breaking it down into small stages. and repeat over several sessions. add the voice cue “close the door” just before you present the pen. It is more difficult to teach than most other tricks. and reward him when he touches it with his nose. You can then progress through further training sessions using a sticky note. stick it to your hand and hold it close to the door. call your dog. and say “close the door”. 1 Target training Hold a pen. Keep trying until he touches the door. Start off by teaching your dog to touch a target by holding out a pen and rewarding him with a treat as soon as he touches the end with his nose. 3 184 Advanced training Touch the paper! Put the sticky note on a low door. Reward him instantly. Wait patiently. If he does not touch it.

moving forward when you release him. Pull the door shut Play exciting tug games with a loop of material until your dog will readily pull it. Begin your session with the paper. .“Close the door!” Once your dog has learned to push the door shut with the paper target attached. His extra momentum will shut the door. remove it and ask him to “close the door”. then hold him back and ask him to “close the door”. Wait for him to shut the door.116–7). Reward him with a jackpot (pp. then hang it on a door that opens outward and ask him to “pull”. start to train him without it.” GOOD PRACTICE If. Never reward touches or pushes with a paw instead of the nose. get him excited. during step 3. 4 “Practice with 185 Housework different doors until he will close any door and run to you for a reward. When practicing with different doors. then reward him really well and end the session. after two successful attempts. he does not push the door firmly. This will result in scratched doors as your dog tries to close them with his paws instead. always return to step 3 to make it easy for him to understand what you mean. then.

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will Inappropriate chases can get a dog result in a well-behaved dog and its owner into trouble. so that he does not do these things. chase things they should not. Learn how to teach your dog good manners. bark excessively. games as an outlet forthis and energy. will not settle down. It is important to prevent use that is acceptable anywhere. Dogs that jump up at people. Patiently teaching good manners at home. excess CHASING DANGER . barge past people to get through doorways first. and instead can live easily and harmoniously with you. and cannot be handled easily are really difficult to live with.Best behavior A dog with good manners makes a popular pet and likeable companion that you will be happy to take out and about. snatch food from their hands. and then in all situations and circumstances.

1 188 Advanced training Bad habit Don’t encourage your dog to jump up to get attention—it can rapidly develop into a consistent and unpleasant habit. By adopting the simple approach shown here every time your dog jumps up. look at him. to greet us. or touch him. It may be appealing when puppies do this. 2 Cold shoulder If your dog jumps up. need to work together to teach him to greet people appropriately. don’t speak. he will learn that it is not a rewarding action. cease to do it. and ignore him until he stops. but it can become an irritating habit in older dogs. and those familiar with your dog. and will. eventually. . he will learn to do this instead. folding your arms. If he is rewarded with attention for keeping all four feet on the floor when he meets you.No jumping Dogs jump up for several reasons—to get closer to us. Turn away. Everyone in the family. and to get our attention.

as you are giving him something to do that is incompatible with jumping. you will see an improvement (pp. They should only greet your dog when he is calm. Don’t touch him. or look at him if he does jump. crouch down to his level and greet and praise him enthusiastically. Progress may be slow initially—his behavior may even get worse for a while—but suddenly. as it may take several weeks before your actions have a positive effect and your dog stops jumping up. speak. ask them to follow the steps shown here. to stop him from jumping up. turning away and calmly ignoring him until he does what you want. Be patient and consistent. Get down to your puppy’s level. asking him to do so before he has a chance to jump up may encourage improved behavior. If they are willing. you will be randomly rewarding him (pp. so that he can learn to greet you without having to jump up.” GOOD PRACTICE Once you begin this process. to his level will enable your dog to get closer to you. Get down to his level and reward his sit by praising him warmly. repeat the exercise.“Good boy!” 4 Greeting friends Keep him on a leash if visitors arrive. Controlled enthusiasm Puppies like to get close to our faces to greet us. 189 Best behavior 3 Reward “Crouching down As soon as your dog has all four feet back on the ground.116–7). If he tries to jump up again when you stand up. . If you have already taught your dog to sit. and the problem will get worse. If you acknowledge this behavior. it is very important that everyone familiar to your dog follows the same approach every time he jumps up. Always reward your dog when he keeps all four feet on the floor.118–9).

when an inexperienced puppy accidentally bites at his owner’s hand holding out some food. As you practice. If you have two dogs. This leads to accidents. Tuck in the thumb and keep the hand flat to make it easier for him to take the food gently without biting. stay calm and wait patiently until he takes his nose away from your hand. Advanced training Keep your hand flat One solution is to offer the food on the flat of the hand. where they grab their owner’s hand as well as the treat. This problem usually develops during puppyhood. GOOD PRACTICE When teaching your dog not to snatch (opposite). Reward him well when he gives up and moves away from your hand. . train them to sit and wait separately. Do not say anything—let him learn the lesson for himself. Prevent this behavior by teaching your dog to wait patiently for his reward. with the food still in it. so you can feed them individually without either feeling the need to snatch. but not so high that he can’t reach it with his mouth. wear an old leather glove to protect your hand. The inevitable consequences of this are that the puppy learns that he has to move fast in order to get the food being offered and learns to snatch. If your dog uses his teeth in his early attempts to get the treat. 190 Competition It is possible that another dog will snatch the treat. to avoid being bitten. raise it higher to stop him doing so. so dogs learn to be fast to make sure they get fed.No snatching Dogs snatch food if they think there is a chance they will lose it. then ask them to sit apart. however. The owner may then begin to whisk the hand away. Paws off If your dog paws at the hand that is holding the treat. only say “off” once and keep your hand really still until your dog moves away. as they find this technique easy. This is a good method to use if you have young children.

. and ignore his attempts to get to the treat. Eventually. he will wait patiently to be fed when you say “off”. 2 Wait Keep your hand still and wait until you feel a small gap open between your dog’s nose and your hand as he draws back. keeping your hand still. 3 Reward patience Practice this until your dog learns to back away from your hand to get you to release the treat. Then open your hand and feed the treat immediately.1 Off! Teach your dog to calm down and wait for his food by hiding a tasty treat in your closed hand and holding it out for him. Say “off”.

praising him calmly and stroking him gently while he settles. 2 Relax Sit back in a chair and relax. As your dog gets used to being asked to settle down beside you. If he becomes restless and gets up. Start teaching him to settle at home. luring him down with a treat if necessary. It is also useful when you are busy. “Good boy!” 192 186 Advanced training 1 Lie down Attach a leash to your dog’s collar and ask him to sit quietly beside you on his bed. . and understands that he will be rewarded for resting calmly. at a friend’s house. you can progress to practicing in less familiar surroundings—for example. then ask him to lie down. ask him to lie down again. such as when answering the telephone or talking to people in the street. with your dog’s bed positioned next to you. Before you begin training your dog to settle. he must first learn the down cue (pp.Settle Teaching your dog to settle down when you ask results in a dog with good manners that is acceptable anywhere.126–7). Wait until he is relaxed. so that he knows he has done the right thing.

128–9). especially if he is young and lively. Slowly get him used to settling in different locations with varying distractions. until he can lie down and relax anywhere. Start by keeping him settled for a few minutes. and move around a little as long as he stays close to you and remains calm and quiet. or somewhere else familiar. “Settle” is different to “wait” (pp. Once he is used to settling in a couple of familiar places. This allows you to take him anywhere without fuss. 193 Best behaviour 4 Change location Try this exercise at a friend’s house. start to vary locations. “This is particularly useful when you are busy or need to concentrate on other things. building in distractions until he can settle anywhere when asked. gradually extending these sessions for longer periods.95) to help keep him busy while you sit near him. in which your dog remains in one position. perhaps reading a book or watching television. so make sure that he has had plenty of stimulating physical and mental activity before attempting this exercise. stretch out. This exercise allows him to change position. Out and about Your dog will find it more difficult to settle when there are distractions nearby.3 Keep him occupied Give your dog a chew (p. Be patient and gently insist that he complies with your request. .” GOOD PRACTICE The settle exercise requires your dog to keep still.

Wait.128–9) exercises. If your dog moves. Apart from being good manners.No pushing If your dog charges through a door ahead of you. Teaching him to sit and wait while you go out first is safer. which need to be taught first. and then ask him to sit. Close the door if he tries to run out. Dogs that learn to wait politely for their owners to go through doorways and entrances before them develop self-control and learn to have more respect for their owners.122–3) and wait (pp. close the door quickly and ask him to sit again. Continue until you can take a step through the open door and your dog remains sitting. move in front of him to position yourself between him and the door. you will not be able to check first that it is safe for him to do so. If he is allowed to do this. then proceed Slowly open the door. ”Sit” 2 3 To teach your dog to wait. The method given here builds on the sit (pp. he risks tripping you or running into the path of traffic or other dangers outside that you are not aware of. 1 194 188 Advanced training Temptation to barge The anticipation of going out or somewhere new may cause your dog to push through doorways ahead of you. this will make life easier for you and will be appreciated by visitors. .

Be patient and persistent. you can use a leash to restrict his progress. 5 195 Best behavior “Come!” GOOD PRACTICE Always make sure that your dog is well exercised before you attempt to teach this skill. patiently teaching them until they will all sit together for you to go through first.4 “Reward him for staying in the sit position. If you have more than one dog. and that you control the territory. excited one. then reposition him and try again. it is important to keep them under control at all times.” Reward Once you have passed through the doorway to the other side. Under control If you own more than one dog. only work with one at a time until each dog can do it perfectly whenever you ask. . Practice this often until he waits at doors automatically. Insisting that your dog calmly waits by the doorway and allows you to go through first will help him to realize that his needs do not always come before yours. Then. Release When you are ready. release your dog from his sitting position by asking him to come through the open doorway to join you. If your dog repeatedly tries to rush through the door as you step forward. Reward him really well for remaining in the sit position. then three. turn raound and praise your dog. try with two together. A tired dog is more likely to remain sitting than a lively. Teaching this exercise will help them to learn self-control when they are in a pack.

and dogs must be taught a chase recall (pp. and keep him on a leash while children play around him. Early lessons Puppies must learn not to chase children. or whatever they are chasing may get scared and retaliate. If he is still excited. .No chasing Many dogs. keep him on a leash and put some distance between you and whatever is being chased. Teaching them to play games and to chase toys instead of people gives dogs the opportunity to continue enjoying the thrill of the chase in a safe way. especially hounds and herding breeds. unacceptable chases must be stopped. fear of the noise and the smell of cars or machinery or the sudden shock of an approaching jogger or cyclist can cause dogs to want to chase them away. In control If your dog chases. joggers. Teach your puppy to play with toys instead. enjoy chasing and can get into trouble by doing it inappropriately. In addition.154–5). and cats. As well as movement. get further away until he relaxes. a dog’s desire to chase needs to be channeled into acceptable alternative outlets. cyclists. They may collide with cars or cyclists. such as with cars. Ask children to stand still if they are chased. To prevent this happening. Dangerous games The desire to chase is strong.

Try to play enough chase games with your dog each day to use up all his mental and physical energy. such as cyclists. during this stage in their lives. and teach him to play games with toys instead. A puppy that does not learn to chase things inappropriately will not do it when he is an adult. so you can get him back if he is running into danger. Prevent him from behaving in this way. so we must make sure that they only chase toys. If he really enjoys chase games.“Your dog’s desire to chase needs to be channeled into games with toys.” Resisting the urge If your dog chases things that either excite or worry him. The amount of energy he has depends on his breed. and fitness. Start off a long way away and gradually get closer. Keep him on a leash while he watches them in the distance. rather than inappropriate objects.154–5). age. Use a leash or muzzle and seek professional help for your dog. Some dogs are aggressive when they catch whatever they are chasing and may bite in excitement or frustration to prevent it moving. . teach him a chase recall (pp. Born to chase Sight hounds are bred to chase and their desire to do so is extremely strong. desensitize him by relaxing in a place where he can get used to them. You must channel this desire into acceptable games with toys. Best behavior GOOD PRACTICE Dogs develop their chasing preferences during puppyhood and adolescence. 197 Start young Start as you mean to go on.

say “quiet” and give a hand signal. calming an excited dog. or because they are excited. Be quiet When your dog barks. GOOD PRACTICE Never encourage a young puppy to bark. Wait for him to stop and then reward him immediately with praise and a treat. On guard Dogs bark at delivery people because they think they are doing something suspicious. Ignoring attention-seeking barking. wolves. Only attempt this if you have already successfully trained him to perform lots of other exercises. Interrupt barking whenever it occurs. and praise. Ask him to come to you as soon as he has sounded the alarm if there is someone near the property. he is probably trying to get your attention.No barking Dogs bark for many reasons. and minimizing intruder-alert barking are key to good relations with neighbors. who very rarely bark. Teach “speak!” Tease your dog with a toy while he is tied to a fixed object. Most dogs need very little encouragement to bark and. . or want to attract your attention. Some breeds. Discovering why your dog barks and addressing the problem are key to changing his behavior. Most dogs will bark naturally to alert their owners against intruders as they get more confident during adolescence. which will become a nuisance. but teaching him to be quiet (far right) is much more difficult. games. in this way. they differ greatly from their wild ancestors. it is important to teach dogs not to bark unnecessarily. and calmly engage your dog in another activity. have a tendency to bark more than others. Eventually reward continuous barking. Practice doing this several times in the course of a short session. Teaching your dog to bark is easy (right). Reward any slight noise he makes immediately with freedom. particularly the Terriers and guarding breeds. such as pushing something through the mail slot. Encouragement will cause an overreaction. 198 Advanced training Attention seeking If your dog looks at you when he barks. Teach your dog to run to you for treats and games just before they arrive. Because most dogs live in houses close to other people who may be disturbed by the noise. Make sure he has enough good-quality attention throughout the day and then ignore him completely if he barks at you. as well as some smaller breeds bred especially for the purpose of sounding the alarm. such as to guard property. as well as for keeping your own stress levels low.

Refuse to do anything until your dog is quiet. This will calm him down and teach him that barking does not achieve anything.Overexcitement Some dogs bark when they are excited. 199 Best behavior .

nips at your fingers. and restrained teaches him that you are in control. give him plenty of exercise before trying again. Teach your dog to accept restraint by holding him tightly (although taking care not to cause him any discomfort) until he relaxes. and bathe him. examine. improving your relationship and making him feel more at ease when you touch him. and clip his nails. lifted. clean his teeth. We like to touch and hold our dogs as a sign of our affection for them. Open the mouth Prize open the front teeth. but our dogs need to get used to this gradually. but dogs do not touch each other unless they are fighting or mating. hold. Feed a treat quickly to make this a pleasant experience. If this is too much for him. Holding his head. then let him go immediately. It also makes it easier and more pleasant to carry out basic health checks. progressing gradually to moving the ear. begin by slowly touching the ear and rewarding him well. Immediately let go and try for longer next time. so they learn to accept and enjoy it eventually. It also builds a trusting bond between you. GOOD PRACTICE If your dog looks anxious.Accepting handling Teaching your dog to accept handling will make him a better patient if he is ill or injured. Relax him with gentle massages and petting before trying again. If your dog is unafraid but he wriggles and will not keep still. gently ease the side of the top lip back in order to expose the back teeth. groom. Inspect the teeth Get your dog accustomed to lifting his top lip to look at the teeth. touched. go more slowly and touch more gently. Accustoming your dog from an early age to being held. or shows any other sign that he is unhappy with what you are doing. Lift the ears Slowly lift your dog’s ear flap to look inside. and hug. Touch Humans like to touch. .

“Humans like to touch. but our dogs need to get used to this gradually. and bring him carefully in toward your body. working up to gentle paw squeezes later. Lift the tail Practice lifting your dog’s tail gently. so touch them gently at first. Lift him slowly. . 201 Best behavior Examine the eyes With one thumb above the eye and the other positioned below. so he feels secure. and hug. Touch the nails with clippers and feed your dog a treat. then lifting under his chest with the other hand. Be calm and patient. so they learn to accept and enjoy it. hold.” Lifting Lift your dog by placing one hand under his bottom to support his weight. If your dog seems worried.Touch the paws Paws are extremely sensitive. slow down and hold the head steady first. gently hold the eyelids apart so you can look in the eye. This will help get him get used to having his nails trimmed in the future. This will enable you to look underneath and will also get him accustomed to being touched in this area.

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Doggy dilemmas

5

Solving training problems

Solving training problems
It is easy to get stuck in the middle of a training session and reach a point where your dog does not want to work, or he cannot seem to understand what you are asking him to do. This section will give you ideas on what might be going wrong with your training, and advice on how to fix these problems. All of the common reasons for training difficulties are included here—find out what you need to know to help you and your dog progress. It also offers guidance on the thorny issue of dog aggression, with Dog training is not always easy, information on where to get and we sometimes need help and advice to overcome the difficulties further help if necessary. we are experiencing with our dogs.
OUT OF CONTROL

Unrewarding rewards
Training using positive methods relies on your dog wanting the reward that is on offer. Knowing what your dog likes most, and guessing what he might want at the moment you wish to train him takes skill and practice.
Dogs make a choice between what they want to do and what we are asking them to do. The rewards you give need to match the task you are asking your dog to do, and also be valuable to him at that moment in time. If you are struggling to get your dog to respond, try increasing the value of the treats or games you are offering (pp.108–9), or give him something different.

Too much pressure
A low-value treat, combined with too much pressure from the owner, can cause a dog to show no interest in working. Adopt a more relaxed approach and increase the value of the reward you are offering (p.108).

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Doggy dilemmas

Have fun
Having fun with your dog and building a good relationship will allow you to reward him with praise and approval, with only occasional treats and games to keep his responses sharp.

Top choice
Find out which treats or toys your dog values most highly, and use these only for complicated tasks and difficult exercises, and for when your dog would rather be doing something else.

“Find out which treats
or toys your dog values most highly.”

Allow exploration
Lack of interest in food or toys when outside may be due to excitement or anxiety. To teach your dog to overcome the distractions that a new area brings, allow him to explore a restricted area until it becomes familiar to him.

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Solving training problems

Focus
Once your dog has had a chance to explore and relax, offer him a tasty treat or a game with a toy to regain his focus before you attempt further training. Repeated sessions like this will teach your dog to concentrate on you and training when outside.

GOOD PRACTICE
The unexpected is always more exciting and intriguing than the familiar, so keep your dog guessing as to what reward he is going to get, and offer something new if his performance is deteriorating. Make sure that your dog understands your voice cues before you start to

reduce the rewards you give him on a variable reinforcement schedule (pp.116–7). Jackpots must be both rewarding and fun. You can make a new toy more valuable by keeping it to yourself and allowing your dog only brief and limited access for very good behavior. This will make him work harder to get the reward.

Prize chew Make a treat or game more rewarding by withholding it for a while and offering him something else instead.

If your timing is too late. Have the treat to hand and feed immediately. . the dog cannot see a reason for doing the action and quickly gets bored with trying. This can quickly result in a disinterested dog and a frustrated owner. your dog cannot learn what you are trying to teach. as treats are then close at hand. frustration. 208 Doggy dilemmas Too little. concentrate on watching your dog carefully. Getting it right To ensure you reward at the right time. Rewarding too late leads to training problems.Bad timing If the timing of your rewards is not correct. Rewarding actions immediately will ensure he does that same action again next time. so make sure you always have rewards ready. your dog will not know if he has done the right thing.112–3). and so will not learn what you want him to do. praise your dog warmly while you sort out the treat. Don’t wait until he has moved on to thinking about other things. This can lead to confusion. and lack of interest in training for you both. Rewarding immediately is the only way you have to let your dog know that he has done the correct action (pp. Using a treat bag can help this. getting your treat ready before you begin so that you can reward at the precise moment he does the required action. Even if you have made a mistake and don’t have the food ready. too late If owners reward too late.

” GOOD PRACTICE Symptoms of bad timing are disinterest or frustration from the dog involved. and you may see an improvement. Reward small approximations to the desired goal as soon as your dog tries. it could be that your reward timing is off. Have the treat to hand and feed immediately. Solving Headingtraining problems Reward small steps In the early stages of training. If your timing is out. will result in your dog learning the wrong thing. Soon both you and your dog will be looking forward to training again. If your dog tries to wander away during training sessions or barks with frustration. withholding the reward next time until he gives you more. seek help from an experienced trainer who can show you how to get the timing right. “Concentrate on watching your dog carefully. Recognize the signs If your dog walks off during a training session. reward your dog for trying. Rewarding incorrect behavior. such as dropping the toy outside the box instead of in the box. you may succeed with easy exercises but may struggle with tasks that are quite complicated. . Correct your timing.209 Reward the right action Be clear about what you are asking so that you can watch carefully for the action you require. check your timing. If you cannot correct this by yourself.

Failure to do so can lead to confusion and a lack of response. Be prepared to go back a stage if necessary. and reward successful behavior so he does it again next time. temporarily forgetting about the toy. we sometimes need to remember that they need help to understand what we mean. Go back a stage Helping the dog out by going back a stage creates success and builds trust. Although it is tempting to treat them like children. . The owner has asked for too much too soon and he cannot work out what is required of him. The dog responds immediately to the call. 210 Doggy dilemmas Make yourself clear Help your dog This dog needs some help. reminding him to shut it (pp. you must make it easy for your dog to comply with your requests. Putting a sticky note on the cabinet door will trigger the right response.184–5). It is easy to get frustrated and think the dog is deliberately being disobedient. To achieve success. It is easy to think that the dog is being deliberately naughty.Make it easy Dogs have less complex brains than humans and are less intelligent. This owner has asked the dog to bring a toy and calls him.

Reward success Rewarding only the behavior that you want. and then go back to how you first trained the task and help him to understand what it is that you require. Think of ways to make it easier for him to work out what you want him to do. Instead. ensures that it is more likely to happen next time you ask him to perform the same action. . and go back to training when you have thought the exercise through more carefully. check that he is well and wants what you are offering.“Helping your dog out by gently reminding him what you want him to do results in success. return to something he knows well and reward him for doing it. GOOD PRACTICE Always assume your dog is confused and does not understand what you want. stop the lesson. or just being stubborn. rather than being disobedient.” Show him the toy Helping your dog by showing him what you wanted leads to success. so that he remembers what to do next time you ask him to bring a toy back to you. Then walk away. Ignored? If your dog is switching off. Getting frustrated and angry when your dog fails to do as you ask is natural but undesirable. once you have patiently helped your dog to understand what you require. Make sure you reward him well when he responds correctly. cool down. If your dog will not do as you ask. ignoring you on purpose.

he will lack the ability to concentrate for long. it is a good idea to channel excess energy into a walk. .192–3)—make sure that he has had plenty of free running and games with toys to use up his excess energy. so that he can be allowed off the leash in safe areas. Take care not to overexert your dog—you don’t want him to be so tired that he’s unwilling to participate in training. Teach your dog to come back when called (pp. he will find it easier to focus on learning new tasks. If your dog is boisterous and excitable. The amount of time you need to spend exercising before training will depend on age and breed. Once your dog has released his excess energy. Tire him out Before training exercises that are relatively sedentary and require your dog to be calm and peaceful—for example “settle” (pp. a run. Before a training session. 212 Doggy dilemmas Running free Free running is essential for lively and energetic dogs. or vigorous play.124–5).Dealing with excess energy Young dogs and naturally lively breeds need plenty of exercise before they can concentrate on learning.

” Losing interest Puppies have shorter attention spans. Mind games Playing interesting games with toys is an excellent way to use up your dog’s mental energy. Physical exercise from free running and games will tire him enough to concentrate. which can be dangerous. Increase the amount of exercise your dog gets on every walk by playing games with him. Don’t expect your puppy to stay still for long. . and excitable and active—jumping up or nipping at your hands or toys. GOOD PRACTICE If your dog is easily distracted. as his desire to move around is strong. as well as tiring him out physically. but they must be under your control at all times and come back reliably when called. for example—you need to get rid of some of his energy before training him.“Your dog’s energy levels will depend on age and breed. Take toys on walks with you rather than throwing sticks for him to chase. Stay in control Freedom to run and play off the leash is essential for all dogs. so lessons should be kept short. lively dog will be more willing to work after play. A young. New tricks Older dogs can concentrate for longer and can go straight into lessons without the need for lots of running and energetic games beforehand.

Lack of familiarity with your cues can result in your dog failing to respond to your requests when you are away from home. he needs further training.” . using high-value treats. Unsettled If your dog lies down and relaxes at home when you have visitors but will not do so at a friend’s house. Training all exercises from the beginning in many different places. Unfamiliar situations also bring distractions that entice your dog away from what you are asking him to do. Such dogs often come when called immediately at home but have not been trained to come back when distractions are present. This will get him used to relaxing in other environments. Make appointments to visit your friends. This is a fault of the training. is the key to success. they are distracted. but seem naughty and disobedient elsewhere. so you can practice. and with many repetitions.Only behaves at home Many dogs are well trained and behave perfectly at home. not the dog. “Dogs who do not respond to cues away from home are not ‘naughty’. 214 Doggy dilemmas Selective deafness Running off on walks is common. and you should be aware that you need to train in all sorts of different situations.

You will find that he soon remembers what to do. In this case. Be kind and patient and try to help him get over his anxieties before asking him to do things for you (pp. return to his basic training and make it easy for him to understand what you want. using a long line to keep control. 215 Solving training problems Confused Many dogs will not perform a well-learned trick in front of an audience. he should feel relaxed enough to respond. is required until your dog responds every time.“Be kind and patient. it will naturally take him longer to respond to your requests. Back to basics If your dog cannot work out what to do. they are just distracted or do not understand. and you need to train these exercises again in a wide range of conditions and places until your dog behaves well in all situations. Make sure you have high-value treats and practice until your dog is perfect. there has been insufficient training in other locations (pp. Train the exercises again in a wide range of places. because he will be busy watching out for things that may seem threatening to him.” Practice on a line Patient teaching. and eventually he will be able to respond correctly in many different environments. New location Training your dog in different environments is key to helping him feel relaxed and confident enough to perform in any situation.114–5). GOOD PRACTICE Dogs who do not respond to cues away from home are not “naughty”. A different location and the presence of other people are enough to change the associations to such an extent that he will not know what you are asking.156– 7). If your dog is anxious when he is away from home. In time. .

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Bad dog? Solving training problems becomes easier if you look at the world from your dog’s viewpoint to see what he finds rewarding. Arrange situations so that he is rewarded for doing what you want him to do instead. .

forcing the dog to take this drastic action. Dogs will usually show signs that they are scared first. If a dog feels he is in extreme danger. Aggression may be the only way a dog knows to get the threat to move away. this behavior is quickly learned and will be used in another similar situation. . but if this fails to protect them from the threat. but a dog may become aggressive toward his owner if he is being punished and if he is very frightened of the person. Most dogs do not want to bite. Aggression toward people is usually reserved for suspicious strangers. it may have displayed fearful body language earlier and been ignored. Aggression usually escalates from growling to snapping to biting. If successful.Fear-based aggression The main reason why dogs become aggressive is that they are afraid. Cornered This dog is tied up. and will put up a good warning display to try to get the threat to back off. they will use aggression to keep themselves safe. and he has no choice but to use aggression to confront the danger he faces. 218 Doggy dilemmas Learning to fight Uncontrolled rough play can force the underdog to become aggressive in order to make the other dog stop. Most aggression toward other dogs is also fear-based. he may even resort to biting. as a dog does not look afraid when lunging or barking. but in some situations a dog may bite without giving any warning if he feels sufficiently scared. and they have enough confidence. ”Go away!” Owners can find it difficult to believe that their dog’s aggression has its origins in fear. However.

92–3). Move away as soon as you see the first signs of distress or fear (pp. Failure to do so will result in a dog that is scared and more likely to bite.” GOOD PRACTICE Keeping a good distance from things that you know scare your dog will minimize the chances of him becoming stressed.74–5).254 for details of the relevant groups that can help you. “In some situations Preventing aggression Socialize young puppies with everything they will encounter as adults (pp. Muzzles can help to keep people and other animals safe. but a muzzled dog can still harm. or ask your veterinarian to refer you.Muzzles Control measures are vital for aggressive dogs. . a dog may bite without giving any warning if he feels scared enough. They need gentle help to overcome their concerns. Shyness Shy dogs are potential fear-biters if they find themselves in the wrong situation. Never force a shy dog forward to “confront his fear”. Appreciate that he is afraid. and try to help him to find a way to overcome his fears without forcing him. See p. Good behavioral therapy is also needed. Fear-based aggression is a serious issue. The pet behaviorist will work out a treatment plan for you to follow that will involve desensitization to the fear stimulus and counter-conditioning to replace bad feelings with good ones. and you will need the help of an experienced pet behaviorist to help you and your dog overcome the problem.

. but they occasionally resort to aggression to get their own way or to make a point. or biting to avoid pain—such as the pain of a tail being trodden on—are just some of the reasons why dogs may be aggressive. and get him focused on you.254) for a long-term solution. keep your distance from other dogs. fighting with other dogs for a place in the household hierarchy. “Dogs have no words to tell 220 Doggy dilemmas us when they are upset or to ask us to help them. Do not let him off-leash. try to reduce opportunities for conflict. They need to be gently persuaded that we are no threat to their food. Feeling protective towards food. Aggression from us will make the problem worse. whose ancestors needed to do so in order to prevent starvation. and take action to prevent their dogs from feeling that aggression is the only option. Seek professional help (p. Dogs have no words to tell us when they are upset or to ask us to help them. Most dogs live peacefully with us and with each other.” ”Mine!” ”Watch it!” If your dog shows aggression toward other dogs. Finding out why they feel like this is the key to solving the problem. Guarding food is a natural behavior for dogs.Other causes of aggression As well as fear. there are many other reasons why a dog may decide to fight or bite. Owners need to be aware of potential problems.

They should be removed quickly from higharousal situations. and factors such as being too hot. to a great extent. by his breed. whereas others are more easily provoked. too hungry.”Leave it!” Fighting between two dogs that live in the same home is common. Brush slowly. particularly when both animals are entire. Volatile Terriers were bred to be courageous and feisty. Getting advice from an experienced pet behaviorist (p. and use aggression to let their owners know this.254) will help you to find a solution for both of you. ”Ouch!” Sensitive dogs may find grooming painful and unpleasant. just as it can for us.254).88–9) are possible solutions. How comfortable the dog feels physically can also have an effect. taking care not to pull. 221 Solving Headingtraining problems GOOD PRACTICE Whether a dog is feisty or likely to bite is determined. terriers need good socialization. This only serves to escalate the aggression and ruin the relationship between dog and owner. or too tired. and keep grooming sessions short. Be gentle. so that your dog learns to trust that you won’t hurt him. so it is no surprise that many are quick to resort to aggression. A pet behaviorist can give you an independent assessment and a treatment plan (p. Consequently. . Some breeds of dog can cope with many adverse circumstances before they react. Reinforcement of an existing hierarchy by the owners and neutering (pp. Many owners become aggressive in response to their dog’s aggression. can lower thresholds for aggression.

A Q When I ask my dog to sit at a distance. Don’t get angry with him for walking toward you. you will walk more quickly. What should I do? 222 Doggy dilemmas He pulls on the leash to get to the park faster. “Reward your dog well for performing the right action.168–9) and retrieving (pp.Troubleshooting Despite both good intentions and patient training sessions. or he will begin to creep forward slowly.” . Here are some examples of common training problems. It may take a long time to reach the park at first. instead. How can I teach him to sit in the right place each time? A All previous rewards have been for putting his bottom on the ground when right next to you. Teach jumping (pp. with advice on how to solve them. but you will get faster with fewer stops each time you practice. and then ask him to jump again (keep the jump very low at first). instead. sometimes dogs do not perform the desired action perfectly. he walks toward me and sits when he reaches me. Tire him out with some energetic games in the yard first to reduce his incentive to race to the park for exercise. Then ask him to do both at the same time. he will try to do this again—which means he has to get to you first. pulling results in slower progress—because you stop and make him wait. so teach him that. You will have to keep repeating this gently until he gets it right. immediately take him back to the toy. but pulls all the way there. but he keeps dropping it. ask him to “fetch” it again. then praise him enthusiastically when he does. A It is perfectly normal for dogs to forget to do one thing while concentrating on another.136–41) separately for a while until your dog can do each task easily and without concentrating. so when you ask him to sit.152–3) by preventing him from moving toward you until he gets the idea. Q My dog walks well on the leash when coming home from the park. Teach him that he will get his reward for sitting wherever he is (pp. He needs to learn that if he keeps the leash loose.134–5) from the moment you attach the leash to his collar so that you are training even as you go out of the door and down the path. don’t reward him but. Start this exercise (pp. How can I prevent this? Q I’m trying to teach my dog to jump while carrying a toy in his mouth. If he drops the toy before jumping.

he rolls onto his back and wags his tail.166–7). but patiently lure him into the correct position again and reward well. Encourage your dog to give the toy to you by offering something he would rather have. He may find it easier to drop the toy rather than allow you to take it from him. then give your reward in the form of social approval and laughter (pp. How can I teach him to do what I want? A This is funny. than the chase. such as food or a favorite toy.Q My dog comes back to me with his toy but he won’t give it up. or more. so why not put it on cue so you can get him to do it again next time (pp. use a food lure to position your dog carefully.108–9).110–11)? When you want to teach the play dead trick. try not to laugh. because this reaction has been so successful in the past. and then gradually build up the time he must hold it before rewarding. What can I do? A Some dogs enjoy the possession of a toy just as much. Giving it up is hard for them because you are taking away something they enjoy (similar to someone taking money from you and not giving it back). 223 Solving training problems Q When I ask my dog to play dead (pp. If you leave it too long and he rolls onto his back and wags his tail. Reward the “dead” position quickly at first. . Teach him to trust that you will give it back once you have it by returning it to him or throwing it again for him to chase.

How can I teach him to come back? A The downside of having a well-socialized dog is that they like people so much that it is sometimes very difficult to stop them greeting anyone and everyone they encounter when out on a walk. “Allow him to greet the person in a controlled way.” .Troubleshooting Q I’ve tried to get my English Setter to play but she is not interested. fun play sessions like this will build his interest and. You will find that short. Tie a small piece of sheepskin onto a line and then weave it in and out of some long grass to tempt your dog to follow it and pounce. sometimes showing it to him and then. What can I do? Play has its origins in the rehearsal of hunting behavior. at other times.150–1). use a long line. A 224 Doggy dilemmas Q My dog likes people so much he runs to them before coming back to me when I call. fast-moving creature will stimulate your dog to give chase. and then try again a little later. can be turned into games with toys. Anything you can do with a toy that simulates a small. Use this to reel your dog back to you gently whenever he sees someone he wants to greet. and then allow him to greet the person in a controlled way if you think it is appropriate. but take care not to get tangled in it or trip anyone else up. gradually. hiding it. Always reward him really well for coming back. To train your dog to check in with you first (pp. Keep moving it erratically. Always be sure to stop the game before your dog gets bored. even if you had to make it happen.

In this way. praise him really well. gently insist that he does as you ask. he will bring anything he can find before eventually bringing his leash. so she does not get too far ahead. . enlist your friend’s help and bring your dogs together for training. to increase the likelihood of a positive response from him. he will soon learn that there is no reward for picking up other things.” until the excitement of having visitors has died down before asking your dog to go to his bed. Ask her to walk around you in a big circle while you train your dog to walk beside you. Then walk in parallel with the other dog and practice again. How can I teach him to do this? “Give him a tasty A The rewards you are offering your dog for going to his bed do not outweigh the rewards he gains by being sociable with visitors. Therefore you must either step up the rewards he receives for being on his bed—perhaps by giving him a tasty chew—or accept that he wants to be sociable and train him to behave politely with visitors instead. How can I teach him to respond correctly to me first time? A Take these things from him but do not give him any reward.132-5). Practice this until he walks calmly at your side. using a house line to make sure that it happens (pp. with your friend walking very slowly. You could also try waiting chew… or train him to behave politely.118–9). Alternatively. When he is reliable. How can I stop him doing this? Solving training problems A Train your dog to walk well on a loose leash in all situations (pp. go back to training him with only the leash in view (pp. To make it easier.Q My dog won’t “go to bed” when visitors come.178–9) until he understands the word for this action. Q I like to go for a walk with my friend and her dog but my dog pulls on the leash so much that it is not enjoyable. Q When I ask my dog to fetch the leash. and then add another item and help him to make the right decision. When he does bring you the leash.

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Out and about 6 Sports and fun .

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help you to learn new skills. and finding one that suits you both will result in many hours of shared pleasure. Dog sports provide a framework for further training. There are many to choose from.Sports and fun Dog sports provide excitement and fun for both dog and owner. and make an enjoyable hobby in the process. and it is a good way for them to get the activity you have chosen. The wide variety of canine sports available are described here. and how you Dogs love to swim once they and your dog can get fit for know how to do so. which will lay the foundations for taking part. along with advice on how to get involved. WATER RETRIEVES . fit without risking injury. Use the exercises in the preceding chapters to train your dog to understand and respond to numerous cues.

He will get fitter and smarter. a dog sport will provide him with exercise and a chance to use his mental energy. you and your dog will be ready to start training for one of the many dog sports available. and really improve your training ability and knowledge. will take you to many different parts of the country that you haven’t visited before. and increase your skills. Agility Both owners and dogs need to be fit and supple to make turns at high speed on agility courses. and your dog will love the excitement and exercise. 230 Out and about Once you have completed the basic training given in previous chapters. especially when you win your class.Getting involved Sporting activities involving dogs are fun. The jumps are lowered for smaller dogs to make the competition fair. and the bond between you will get stronger. If you use only positive training methods and make sure your training sessions are always fun for your dog.” . and the bond between you will get stronger. There is nothing like working in partnership with your dog to achieve goals. Each sport will give you a different perspective on training. he will love taking part. activity. too. and revel in the atmosphere of shows and competitions. and performance of dog sports. There are many to choose from. “Your dog will get fitter and smarter. They enable you to make new friends who have a similar interest and. when you reach competition stage. Participating in Star performer Sociable dogs enjoy the attention. Dog sports give you aims and goals to train for.

The AKC may have a list of the larger clubs. Cani-cross Energetic owners can take part in sports that require as much effort from them as from their dog. or food-supply stores.254). What you decide to get involved in usually depends on what is available in your area. Most competitions are registered with the AKC. Dogs and owners need to get fit gradually. To know what is available in your area. attend a beginner’s course. and buy magazines dedicated to dogs. Talk to competitors after they have competed to learn more. although fast. If there are no clubs in your area for your chosen sport. Be prepared to travel to learn the skills required. .Gundog trails Local clubs often hold competitions to test the working ability of gundogs. These are often advertised on websites. watch out for advertisements for shows and courses in local vets’ offices. handlers get nervous. This is done by repeated practice until responses are perfect. pet shops. These events are informal and organizers sometimes allow other breeds to participate. groomers. dogs pick up on those emotions and their performance suffers. contact the American Kennel Club (AKC. Ask local dog-care professionals such as veterinary staff. but it won’t be comprehensive. Training at home is essential for this and finding a place to practice and any necessary equipment is important if you want to be placed. The only way to overcome this is to make responses to cues so automatic that nothing affects them. active dogs are usually the winners. Flyball Pressing a pedal to release a ball is an essential flyball skill. but there are others that are less common. Pages 234–45 will give you an outline of the most popular ones. The standard of teaching will vary. trawl the internet. so it is a good idea to ask at shows for names of teachers who will put you on the right path from the outset. so get in touch to find out where to go and watch. because the total number of hours you put in will make the difference between failure and success. All breeds can take part. 231 Sports and fun Practice is vital Practice is the secret to success in dog sports. During competitions. or dog-walkers about the various clubs in your area. To find out more about these sports. see p. Training sessions need to be frequent. Which sport? Decide which sport seems most appealing to you. and particularly to take part in competitions held around the country.

Getting into shape takes time and effort. They need to be slimmed down gradually by reducing food intake and increasing exercise until they are the correct weight (below). and stamina gradually so that he can cope with the rigors of his new sport without injuring himself. and play. your dog needs to be the correct weight (pp. They will also be 232 Out and about able to give you some valuable tips on how to achieve this level of fitness and help you plan a realistic schedule. Before any exercise schedule is started. it will be necessary to build up your dog’s fitness. Unless you already have a very active lifestyle. Different sports require different physical abilities. If your dog is overweight. It is really important to reduce weight gradually. because sudden changes can be damaging and distressing to your dog. and you will need to check carefully what is necessary with experts in your chosen sport. reduce his weight by cutting down the amount of food you give him and increasing his exercise. and will require your dog to be healthy and physically fit. Check with your veterinarian before starting a weight loss plan.Get fit for sport Dog sports require dogs and owners to be fit and ready for the physical challenges ahead. strength. Slimming down Overweight pets (right) struggle to run. jump.78–9). and needs to be done slowly to allow bodies time to adapt. Preparation All dog sports are active and energetic. and tire easily. .

“New sporting activities will use

different muscle groups than you and your dog have used previously.”

233
Sports and fun

Play exercise Playing with toys is an easy way to get your dog fit. Teach retrieve so your dog brings the ball back to you, but do not run him until he is exhausted.

Jogging Jogging with your dog is good exercise and improves stamina. You are putting in as much effort as your dog, so it is easy to know when to stop.

In addition, a fit dog needs a fit handler, so don’t neglect your own fitness program. Remember that both of you need to warm up gradually before undertaking any strenuous physical activity.

that it is your dog who is putting in all the effort! Try to plan your sessions in advance so that you set a limit on how many repetitions of a particular action you will do each day.

Because your dog cannot tell you when he has had enough, and most dogs will not want to stop while their owner is still ready for more, it is important to plan a steady, stamina-building program, with the help of more experienced people in the sport and your veterinarian. Gradually increasing stamina takes time, but will save injuries and breakdowns through ill health later by slowly strengthening muscles and tendons.

Building strength
New sporting activities will use different muscle groups than you and your dog have used previously. It will take time for these muscles to develop sufficiently to allow both of you to do the sport easily. Asking your dog to jump repeatedly, or to fetch a Frisbee over and over when he is not used to it will make him stiff and sore. For this reason, curb your enthusiasm and remember

Increasing stamina
Some sports require your dog to have lots of stamina and to keep going for hours—sometimes days—before resting. Many breeds are capable of this, but all need time to build up their stamina gradually before performing at a high level.
Fit for life Dog sports keep both dogs and handlers supple, strong, healthy, and fit. Building up gradually to this point will help prevent injuries.

Agility
Sometimes referred to as “show jumping for dogs”, canine agility is a sport that involves skill and speed, requiring dogs to tackle a wide variety of obstacles. Increasingly popular, it is great fun for you and your dog.
Loved by dogs and owners alike, canine agility is a sport of skill, action, and fun. Dogs learn to negotiate different obstacles, and once they have learned how to tackle each piece of equipment, they begin to run courses against the clock. In competitions, dogs negotiate courses of varying degrees of difficulty, and the fastest and most accurate in each class wins. Most elements of agility can be practiced at home with the
Learning jumps Jumping can be taught and practiced at home. Smaller jumps are set up for “mini dogs” to make it fair when they compete against bigger dogs.

minimum of equipment. However, joining a club is essential to enable you to grasp the intricacies of each obstacle, and to give you a chance to learn on equipment that you are unlikely to have at home, such as the dog walk and A-frame. A good training class and club will also encourage you and help you to find out all the essential

information needed to compete. It is important that dogs are physically mature before they begin training. Growing bones and joints can be damaged by jumping at an early age, so puppies should not be encouraged to jump until they are 12 months old. Dogs are not allowed to compete in agility until they are 18 months of age.

234
Out and about

“Dogs learn to negotiate different obstacles.
Once they learn each piece of equipment, they run courses against the clock.”

Learning tunnels Tunnels may need to be shortened at first to encourage dogs to go through, but, like this West Highland Terrier, they soon gain confidence if the training is taken slowly.

The hoop

The hoop is suspended on a frame. Dogs need to learn to judge the height accurately so they can sail through.

235
Sporting activities

Tunnels
Tunnels can be straight or bent, rigid or made of canvas. Once dogs have mastered them, they travel through them at such a rate that the tunnel needs to be pegged down to keep it stable.

Looking ahead
Both dog and handler must be thinking about the next obstacle as they negotiate the one they are doing. A well-trained dog will run ahead of his handler, taking direction as he does so.

Weaves
Dogs must enter from the right and weave in and out until the end without missing any poles. This is easy when done slowly, but is more difficult once they build up speed.

Seesaw
The seesaw is pivoted and dogs learn to run up and tip the balance using their weight. They have to touch the yellow contact points at both ends with their feet, so they need to be accurate as well as fast.

237
Sports and fun

Jumps
Accuracy during jumping is required for competitions, and points are lost if jumps are knocked down. The course has many twists and turns, and it is easy to knock jumps down by cutting corners too close.

and practiced until they are perfect. finally. As with all performances. in harmony. This image epitomizes the sport of freestyle— you can almost hear the music. and on show. Only then are they put together into sequences and. set to music. many hours of rehearsal are the key to success. 238 Out and about Essential routines Routines are taught piece by piece.Perfect Harmony This dog and its owner are in time. having fun. . Each part must be performed with speed and accuracy.

It combines rehearsed movements choreographed to music to present a polished performance—great fun for dogs and owners.122–85) provides the perfect foundation for this training. and experienced dogs get very excited when they hear the music for their session. All training is by reward and encouragement. on accuracy and execution of movement. such as jump ropes. canes. Many training clubs now offer courses for beginners and the sport’s popularity makes it fairly easy to find a course to help you get started. Competitors are given four minutes to demonstrate their routines to the music of their choice. and hats. Both dog and handler need to be physically fit and supple for this sport. It suits dogs who enjoy the repetition and level of activity needed for the many rehearsals required. and is now the more popular choice of competition. and will earn more points. Anything goes Freestyle allows props. in which the dog moves out of the heelwork position—for example. They are judged on program content (a greater variety of moves gains more points). . hoops. Freestyle is more exciting to watch than heelwork. to jump. The movements are easy to teach. both dogs and owners enjoy the training. For this reason. twist. and freestyle was created out of a desire to demonstrate other manoeuvres. A wide variety of maneuvers makes the performance more interesting. and experienced dogs get very excited when they hear the music for their session.” handlers with a sense of rhythm. to be used to help display more elaborate routines. and it spread rapidly around the world. otherwise known as dancing with dogs. as it is nearly impossible to make dogs do some of the moves if they don’t want to. Working through the exercises in this book (pp. and suits 239 Sports and fun “Dogs as well as owners enjoy the training. and on musical interpretation. Heelwork to music was developed in the early 1990s in the UK to show the public how interesting heelwork can be.Dancing with dogs Freestyle and heelwork to music. to move away from the handler. it is an advantage to have a good working partnership already established. The sport gradually developed. and walk on two legs. is tremendously popular. but a basic level of obedience is required before you begin. Freestyle is open to any breed of dog and any age of handler.

and the first team with all dogs back successfully is the winner. until eventually there are two teams left for the final. Once the first dog is back. If a dog faults—for example. which is down the side of the jumps rather than over them. This sport suits sociable owners who enjoy the camaraderie of being part of a team. jumping small hurdles to reach a flyball box that delivers a ball they must catch before jumping the hurdles again to return to their handlers. and so on. The team cannot finish until all dogs have run correctly. by running outside the jumps. Teams of dogs race each other. until all four dogs in the team have run. Flyball is a relatively new sport that originated in California in the 1960s. furiously energetic. 240 Out and about “Flyball is a great spectator sport as well as being fun for competing dogs and owners. and is great for active dogs who enjoy retrieving. as well as being fun for competing dogs and owners. The dog has to run to the box via a series of four hurdles. Any active dog can take part and the training is relatively easy. The flyball box There are many different varieties of flyball boxes. “wings” are used to prevent the dogs from going around the hurdles instead of over them. the second dog is released.” Jumping the hurdles All jumps are painted white and many are padded in case a dog accidently makes contact with them. it has spread rapidly around the world. The flyball box is a machine that fires a tennis ball into the air when a dog presses the pedal. then press the pedal of the box. The dog has to catch the ball and then carry it back over the hurdles to the handler. or failing to return the ball—it must run again until it gets it right. During training. Some launch the ball into the air when the dog presses a pedal. Flyball is a great spectator sport. jumping these along the way.Flyball Flyball is fun. with the winners of early heats running against other winners. The most difficult part of training is trying to stop dogs taking the quickest route. Competitions are run as a series of heats. while others allow dogs to run up a padded board and pick up the ball as they turn around. and intensely exciting. . Due to its popularity. which releases the ball.

excitement. and activity of their run. . The most successful dogs are fast and accurate.Sporting activities Flyball fun Dogs enjoy the speed. but spectators love the moment when dogs miss out jumps or drop the ball.

Exercises are divided into three sections: Nose work involves following a track about 1. Both have entry via lower levels that are easier for dog and handler. These sports are for serious trainers who enjoy the rewards a true working partnership brings. championship shows before moving on to the next stage. stays. In obedience competitions. delivery. Retrieve The dumbbell retrieve is common in both competitions. Dogs and handlers progress through five stakes. recall. Crooked sits or mouthing will lose points. retrieve. Points are deducted if any gap appears between a dog and its handler. a 6 ft (1. and a scent-discrimination exercise. retrieving. Obedience clubs are easily found and will help beginners to get started. and speak on command. and recovering two objects laid on it. movements must be precise and accurate to earn points. recovering any articles in it that carry human scent. so this sport suits people who pay attention to detail and accuracy.Obedience and Working Trials Obedience and Working Trials are two serious sports.4 km) long. This sport is very competitive and dogs will need to be prepared to a high level. send-away. steadiness to gunshot. Points are won or lost on the movement of a paw. although “man work” is only taught at the highest levels. The other component of nose work is to search a marked area.8 m) scale. a send-away. In obedience. distance control. Be sure to find ones that use positive training methods where dogs and owners are having fun and learning easily. but all have easier levels for beginners—gradually getting more difficult as dog and handler progress to the higher levels. present. The control round involves heelwork. stays.and off-leash. Obedience Rules and exercises vary between countries.5 miles (2. and a 9 ft (2. Agility requires the dog to clear a 3 ft (1 m) hurdle. and finish must be precise.7 m) long jump. qualifying at both open and Obedience heelwork Heelwork for competitions needs to be close and precise. and retrieve. 242 Out and about Working Trials Working trials consist of exercises similar to those used to train police dogs. Higher classes may require drop on recall. . jumping. Obedience exercises include heelwork on.

“Working trials consist of exercises similar to those used to train police dogs. then must scale the jump. rain. Dogs can be injured by repeated landings from such a height unless they are very fit. The scale A dog has to wait until told to go. and wait until recalled by his owner.” Long jump It may look like a long way. Tracking The dog follows a track of scents produced by crushed vegetation. Track conditions such as wind. and clothing particles left by the track-layer. the jump is designed to look solid from the dog’s perspective before take-off. land on the other side. dryness. skin cells. disturbed earth. Although it consists of separate units. but most dogs clear the long jump easily. and ground temperature affect the dog’s performance. .

” “hunt. Field trials and tests are designed to resemble. The gundog breeds can be divided into retrievers. are used as a substitute for the real thing during field trials and working tests. field trial competitions. and working tests remain the preserve of gundog breeds—other types of dogs are not allowed. and Dummy run Canvas dummies. 244 Out and about Gundog field trials and working tests are usually held in the summer months and use only canvas dummies instead of real game. where birds or animals will be shot around you. gundogs are needed on live shoots and for hunting. and so you will come into contact with people who take pleasure in hunting. “Gundog field trials and tests are a great way to discover your dog’s potential. pointers and setters. Gundogs are among the few breeds that are still used for their original purpose. Field trials are run predominantly to check on a dog’s ability to do the real work of a gundog. . then field trials are preferable to real gundog work. weighing about the same as a game bird. and will give you something to aim for. and all aspects of the dog’s capabilities will be tested.Gundog work Gundog work. which are competitive in an informal way. point. as much as possible. spaniels. There are separate working tests for each of these groups. For the rest of the year. If you find the idea of shooting and dispatching game distasteful. a day’s shooting in the field. This work is easy for gundogs bred specifically for the purpose. and retrieve” breeds (HPRs). and the most difficult thing is keeping control when they are doing something they love to do. Gundog field trials and tests are a great way to discover your dog’s potential and will give you something to aim for with your training.

245 Sports and fun Retrieving Retrieving game from water takes strength and stamina. Different varieties of spaniel have different roles: some are bred to work in thick cover. . but also entirely willing to take direction. Gundogs must work as instructed. They must also be agreeable enough to give it up to the handler on their return. Flushing Spaniels are used for flushing game toward guns. and it is important that gundogs are under control at all times. A dog should do this until the hunter signals he is ready. Control Shooting can be hazardous. and scaring them into the air. scenting out birds. then the dog should scare the bird into the air. not do as they please. They are busy and active.Pointing Pointers and setters are used to locate birds for shooting and to indicate silently to the hunter by standing in this familiar posture. others for open ground or water. They must have a strong desire to work. Dogs must have a strong possessive drive so that they will swim a long way to fetch a fallen bird. running continuously.

only certain people have the physical capacity to take part in demanding sports. to some extent. Other sports are open to all dogs. and it is usually only Newfoundlands and their crosses that are suitable for water work. depending on which breed of dog you have. At special clubs. Which sport you choose for you and your dog is a matter of what suits you both. as well as personal preference. and personal preference. Only Afghan Hounds can take part in Afghan Hound racing. you can go bike-joring instead if you can find roads and tracks nearby that are suitable. and Bernese Mountain Dogs that go carting. if you are very interested in a sport. The dogs are muzzled to prevent any injuries during the times of high excitement. such as cani-cross or dog hiking. However. but entries are sometimes restricted by ability and fitness. For example. only the most active of dogs can take part in bike. 246 Out and about “Which sport is right for you and your dog is a matter of what suits you both. on which sports are available in the area you live in. for instance. they learn to retrieve articles from the water. The less well-known dog sports are sometime restricted. Bloodhounds that take part in Bloodhound tracking tests. Although it is undeniably difficult to go ski-joring if you live in an area with no snow. Which sport is right for you depends on the dog you have.or ski-joring or sled-dog racing. Newfoundland rescue Newfoundlands excel at water rescue. Similarly. there are a lot of less well-known ones in which you can participate. your personal preference. Your choice also depends.” Afghan Hound racing This is a fun sport for owners who like to see their dogs run and want to give them the opportunity to race in a safe place. There is also a freestyle competition. progressing to the more difficult task of rescuing people and boats. where owner and dog can weave routines into their throwing and catching to earn more points. and your capabilities. . there is always a way to do it.Other sports As well as the more popular dog sports. Disc dog Disc-dog competitions involve a dog catching a Frisbee over increasingly larger distances.

Cani-cross In cani-cross. Dogs are harnessed and attached via a tow-line. . competitors run attached to their dog (or dogs) over a timed cross-country course. Various levels are available to allow for all fitness levels and abilities.Joring The art of staying on a bike or skis while being pulled by dogs has developed into an organized sport. Dog hiking Dog hiking is for less competitive owners who enjoy active long walks with their dogs. It’s great for dogs who love to run! Protection sports Protection sports such as Schutzhund (“protection dog”) are popular with serious trainers. Reputable clubs avoid teaching unwanted aggression.

as they were purpose bred for this task. Other types of dog also enjoy the thrill of running fast over long distances.Sled dogs Huskies are the fastest. most efficient sled dogs. and can easily be trained to participate. .

.

problems in 96–7 Afghan Hound Racing 246 ageing see elderly dogs aggression adolescence and other dogs 97 and barking 75 between two dogs in same house 221 bitches in season 89 and chasing 197 and fear 92. 29 Bearded Collie 33 bed. 124–5. 32 Border Terrier 26 boredom. 213 hand signal 111 and long lines 97. types of 95 Chihuahua 20. 34 dancing with dogs 238–9 deafness. inherited 20. causes of 214–15 understanding 210–11 distraction techniques 148. 125 nose licking 60 yawning 60 bones. 148 and rewards 107. 75 play. relationship between 69 barking and aggression 75 excessive 198–9 and fetching the leash 179 ignoring 118 and lack of exercise 77 and puppies 198 Bassett Hound 32. 156–7. 32. ability to see 55 “come” command 77. and chewing 79 Border Collie 20. 125 chase recall 154–5 and checking in 150–1 and distraction techniques 148 and free running 212. 246 body language between dogs 58–9 dog to human 60–1. 16 D Dachshund 27 Dalmatian 21. 149 and scolding for other things 125. 210–11 breeding 88–9 Brittany 30 Bull Mastiff 45 Bull Terrier 31 Bulldog 31 where to find a dog 16–17 Cocker Spaniel 30 cognitive dysfunction syndrome 101 colors. 246 Bichon Frise 24 bitches in season. and aggression 89 biting and aggression 75. 107. relationship with 71. 214 Doberman 40 dog evolution 18–19 breed groupings 20–1 dog hiking 247 dog shows 19 dog sports. in puppies 94 and shyness 219 Bloodhound 55. 94–5 chews. 220–1 in puppies 92 reasons for 218–21 see also biting agility course 234–7 Airedale Terrier 34 Akita 41 attention–seeking 67 Australian Sheepdog 33 for 74. sending to 182–3 with babies in house 69 when visitors come 225 Belgian Shepherd 37 Bernese Mountain Dog 44. relationships 68–9. 238–9 car travel and older dogs 100 and “wait”command 157 carting 246 cats. warm–up exercise 162 dog–food types 78 Dogue de Bordeaux 41 domestication process 18–19 . 147 communication between dogs 58–9 dog to human 60–1 Corgi 29 crossbreeds 46–7 250 Index B babies and dogs. 22 children and dogs. stopping 196–7 chasing games 80–1 with other animals 71 and sticks 81 checking in 149–51 chewing and bones 79 as familiarization process 177 and lack of exercise 77 in puppies 57. and reasoning capabilities 52–3. 218 in elderly dogs 98 growling and snapping. 196 Cavalier King Charles 26 chasing. 196 choice of dog and owner’s lifestyle 14–15. 124–5 in adolescence 96–7 advanced 146–7.Index A adolescence. 33 bathing 87 Beagle 20. 75 human to dog 64–5. 148–9 and body signals 65. reasons C Cairn Terrier 26 cani–cross 247 canine freestyle competitions 130. 218 and muzzles 219 and other animals 70 preventing 75. 89 disobedience in adolescence 97 away from home. dealing with 206 Boston Terrier 24 Boxer 35 brain. selective 214 depression 67 diet 78–9 see also food disc–dog competitions 246 disease.

effects of 98–9 and car travel 100 exercise in 98 eyesight. 74–5 field–trial competitions 244–5 Flat–coated Retriever 38 flyball 240–1 food obsession.door. for dog sports 162 exploring and distraction 207 in puppies 96–7 eyes see sight exercise 77 protection of 220 snatching 190–1 see also diet foster owners 16 Fox Terrier 29 freestyle competitions 130. 155. 218 dog’s way of dealing with 75 in elderly dogs 101 noise phobias 56. in elderly dogs 98 sense of 56 heelwork to music 238–9 high five trick 164–5 hidden objects. 133 stopping 52. 25. lack of 52 Lurcher 55 luring technique 107. 238–9 freeze option 75 French Bulldog 28 I intruders. 215 walking on a loose 132–3 learning process. 222 jumping up and energy levels 213 and rewards 106. 210 “down” command 126–7 hand signal 111 and playing dead 166 and settling 192–3 “drop” command 139 E ears deafness. 110. biting guide dogs 36 gundog work 244–5 L Labradoodle 46–7 Labrador Retriever 36 leash fetching 178–9. use of both 64 see also individual commands handling and grooming 86–7 acceptance of 200–1 aggressive reaction to 221 Havanese 24 health certificates. showing 52. in elderly dogs 100–1 hearing loss. 212–13 harnessing energy 76–7 management of 212–13 requirements and diet 79 and sporting activities 230 exercise benefits of 76–7 in elderly dogs 98 lack of. 138. 225 fetching when not asked 179 off–leash running 77 pulling on 132. 122. 53 energy levels and concentration 135. 38 Great Dane 45. trial and error in 106–7 “leave”command 154–5 Leonberger 44 lifting your dog 201 Llasa Apso 26 logic. 134–5.139. 125. taking a 170–1 Miniature Pinscher 23 Miniature Poodle 24 Miniature Schnauzer 27 mongrels 46 motivation different from human 52 and rewards 109 . problems arising from 77 mental 77 warm–up. 119. finding 77 hide and seek games 172–3 Hovawart 37 hunting instincts 70–1 Husky 248–9 F fear and aggression 92. 118–19. 100. failing 98. 237 training 168–9. puppies 20 checks. 118. 98 grooming coat types 87 see also handling and grooming growling and snapping see aggression. shutting the 184–5. and lack of M Maltese 22 mating 88–9 message. 148. imaginary 77 J Jack Russell Terrier 20. 98 jumping in competitions 234. 196 in puppies 92 signs of 67. selective 214 inspecting 200 elderly dogs ageing. 188–9 G German Shepherd Dog 39 German Short–haired Pointer 34 German Wirehaired Pointer 37 Giant Schnauzer 40 Golden Retriever 20. 225 training on long 97. 222. 101 health checks 100–1 emotion. 130 lying down see “down” command 251 Index H hand signals effectiveness of 64 and puppies 107 and voice commands.

67 Papillon 25 Parson Jack Russell Terrier 25 paws examining 201 shaking a paw trick 164 perspective. 85. 70. dangers of 168 luring technique 110 “crazy five minutes” 77 and mother. 206 timing of 106–7. carrying 176–7 “stop” command 155 and teasing 141 toy grabbing by trainer 139 and toys 136–9 and training leash 138. 107 toilet training 95 training classes 95 pushing through door. 246 noise phobias 56. 151 hierarchy of 108 jackpot 116–17. seeing world from dog”s 57 pet behaviorist 75. 75. 133 and learning process 107 and motivation 109 occasional 116–17 and playing 84. 38 rewards and bad habits. 221 phantom pregnancy 89 playing benefits of 85 and chase recall 154–5 with children 69 “come” command.N nail clipping 87 neutering 89 Newfoundland 45. relationship between 69. 119. 211 and gundog work 245 and jumping with toy in mouth 222 and leash fetching 178–9 “leave” command 154–5 and owner enthusiasm 137 and playing 80–1 putting toys away 180–1 and groceries. 108–9 well-behaved 84–5 playing dead 166–7 and rolling on to back 223 Pointers 34. checking on 17 and playing 84 problem solutions 94–5 and rewards 92–3. prevention of 119. 107 and repeated behaviors 106–7 rules for 117 and social approval 109. curing 118–19 and boredom. 197 chewing 57. 112–13. stopping 196. 208–9 types of 108 and walking on a loose leash 132–3 see also individual commands Rhodesian Ridgeback 40 Rottweiler 44 Rough Collie 33 running away and breeding season 88 and lack of exercise 77 S safety measures 74–5 St Bernard 20. 71. 219. 196 nose licking 60 nutrition 78–9 O obedience trials 240–1 off-leash running 77 P 252 Index pack instinct 66. stopping 194–5 R recall see “come” command rescue centers 16 retrieval training for competitions 240 development of 76. 207 and cues 113. 118. 94–5 and children. 77. 45 scent . 108–9 and puppies 92–3. dealing with 206 and concentration 206. 140. 139 and “wait” command 140 Retrievers 20. 185 and jumping up 106. 114 enhancing 206–7 “good dog” response 117. 219 and hand signals 107 health certificates 20 jump training. 85. 141. short 213 bad habits. 37 police dogs 39 Pomeranian 23 positive training methods 67 predation sequence 18–19 predatory instincts 70–1 protection sports 247 Pug 27 puppies adolescence problems 96–7 aggression in 92 attention span. 220 and barking 198 biting in play 94 boundary setting 93 breeder’s reputation. checking 17 and chasing. 100. 36. 89 first year 92–3. 85 instinctive 80 no interest in 224 and overheating 81 play fighting 59 reasons for 80–1 and retrieval training 80–1 and rewards 84. 196 choice see choice of dog and early social relationships 17. 140–1 and “drop” command 139 finding lost toy 172–3 forgetting toy 210–11 and giving to hand 141 and “good dog” praise 138. 92 exercise 77 and exploring 96–7 fear in 92 finding homes for 17. interrupting 146–7 enthusiasm for 84.

225 water work 246 wave exercise 160–1. 106 Tibetan Terrier 28 toilet training. sense of 56–7 teeth. and checking in 150–1 with other people. 132 walking 76. 156 with other people. ideal 79. 245 spin exercise 162–3 sporting activities 230–1 fitness levels 232–3 see also individual sports Springer Spaniel 31 Staffordshire Bull Terrier 29 “stand” command 130–1 hand signal 111 and show dogs 130 Standard Poodle 34 sticks. 89 settle training 192–3. examining 201 failing. controlling 156. curing 118–19 by children 68–9 hand signals 111 luring technique 107. 77 and fetching the leash 178–9 on loose leash 132–3. 213 “stop” command 155 T taste. learning by 114. difference between 93 and “stay down” 129 walk close command and distraction of other dogs 156 hand signal 111. 232 Weimaraner 41 welcome 52 West Highland Terrier 27 Whippet 30 working trials 240–1 253 Index Y yawning 60 Yorkshire Terrier 23 . puppies 95 toy games and chasing. 110. 112–13. 220 with other animals. teaching 77. 70. 91 with other animals 70–1. 208–9 treats see rewards tricks. 101 sense of 55 “sit” command at a distance 152–3. 75. inspecting 200 temperament. 130 making it easy for the dog 210–11 techniques 110–11 three–minute rule 107 and timing of reward 106–7.investigation 58. 122. and checking in 150–1. 122–3 hand and voice signals 64. in older dogs 98. 164 weight. 125. 75 and touching 86 tug–of–war games 81 U understanding. 222 in different places 114. 59 marking 88 selective breeding 19. stopping 196–7 finding lost toy 172–3 forgetting toys 210–11 jumping with toy in mouth 222 learning to play with 84 limiting use for more concentration 207 as mind games 213 no interest in 81 puppies and biting 94 putting away toys 180–1 refusal to drop toy 223 and retrieval training 136–9 as rewards 109 squeaky 81 toy grabbing by trainer 139 Toy Poodle 23 training association. selection by 15 terriers and aggression 221 hunting instincts 70–1 see also individual terriers think. 55. 31. 222. 134 and pulling on the leash 132. 224 Spaniels 26. helping with dog”s 52–3. 215 bad habits. 157 trust 66. use of both 64 leash fetching 225 and rewards 207 see also individual commands W “wait” command 140 in cars 157 and distance 129 hand signals 11. 138. how dogs 52–3. 71. danger of 81. 210–11 V voice commands 107 and “good dog” response 117. 134–5. 46. 151. 128–9 and settle. 212 Shar Pei 31 Shetland Sheepdog 28 Shih Tzu 25 Siberian Husky 33 sight eyes. 140. sense of 54–5 socializing and dog”s thinking 52 from puppyhood 17. 141. 211 and hand signals. 122 pushing on hindquarters 111 and wait 128–9 sixth sense 57 sled dogs 248–9º smell.

org IAABC 565 Callery Road. Choose someone experienced and knowledgeable. M9W 5Z9.ca 102-30 Concourse Gate. contact: National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors www. Ottawa. dog wardens. New York.speakingofdogs. and pet shops. Greenville. NW. They should work on veterinary referral. K2E 7V7. NY 10128-6804 The Association of Pet Dog Trainers 254 Contacts www. PA 16066 American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) www.cappdt.9767 AKC Customer Care 8051 Arco Corporate Drive.org Tel: (202) 452-1100 2100 L St. Ontario. Look for someone with both practical experience and academic knowledge. Washington. Suite 400 Etobicoke. The following are useful organizations to contact when looking for a new dog or puppy: The International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants www.iaabc.akc.org/ ABSAppliedBehavior/caab-directory The Humane Society of the United States www. groomers.org E-mail: info@iaabc. Other good sources of information about local trainers are local vets.org PMB 369 729 Grapevine Hwy. DC 20037 For further information on dog sports or breeders with puppies. 92nd St. Try to find a center where they make the effort to assess all the dogs in their care so you can choose one to suit your temperament and lifestyle.apdt. Ontario. and be insured.Contacts USA DOG AND PUPPY TRAINING Dog and puppy training classes..nadoi. can help you to progress more rapidly and assist with any individual difficulties. Contact the following organizations or ask your veterinarian to refer you to someone they trust SOURCES OF NEW DOGS AND PUPPIES As well as breeders.hsus. who uses only positive methods with both dogs and their owners.animalbehavior. Texas 76054-2085. Canada Canadian Federation of Humane Societies www.ckc. Hurst.com . or individual tuition. Canada Speaking of Dogs www.cfhs.org Tel: (919) 233. Suite 100. ON L0N 1S0 Canada CANADA Canadian Kennel Club www.ca 200 Ronson Drive.com E-mail: information@apdt. NC 27617-3390 CANADA Canadian Association of Pet Dog Trainers www. The following are useful organizations to contact when looking for a dog or puppy trainer: BEHAVIOR PROBLEMS If you are experiencing behavior problems with your dog.org Tel: (212) 876-7700 424 E. Cranberry Township. Raleigh.ca 156097 Highway 10 Shelburne. it is best to get help fast before habits become too established. SC 29615 Animal Behavior Society http://www.com Tel: 1-800-PET-DOGS (1-800-738-3647) 150 Executive Center Drive Box 35. reputable rescue organizations are a good source of new puppies and adult dogs.aspca. USA American Kennel Club www.

Rob Symonds. Jamie Mooty Patrick Mooty.uk/www. Fidget. Zorro Picture credits The publisher would like to thank the following for their kind permission to reproduce the photographs: l=left. including John Rogerson. Morgan. Scamps. to Victoria Wiggins of Dorling Kindersley for her expertise and patience. Sasuke. PA Photos: AP Photo/ Lewiston Sun Journal. Nuba. Still Pictures: Biosphoto/Klein J. 18 Alamy Images: Dave Porter (bc). Casha. Tony Orchard. those I have tried to help. Maisie. L. Blue. Bird Sara Bradford. Harriet Mackevicius. Luca Lawrence Poppy Lawrence. Julie Warner Esme Waters. Q. Toby. a=above. And finally. Joanne Summers. Archie. Pen Carlin Siobhan Dawson. Shaun Flannery (bl). Photolibrary: Juniors Bildarchiv (bl) (bc) (br). those I have known and loved (particularly my beautiful Spider who appears in so many of the pictures in this book). Wil Morris Elizabeth Munsey. Alice Peacock Claire Pearson. Marika Marsh Caroline Mooty. iStockphoto. & Hubert M. Dotty.co. Skipper. 244 Photolibrary: Juniors Bildarchiv (bl) (bc) (br). Wendy Grantham Nala Gunstone. Still Pictures: Biosphoto/ Klein J.co. Carla Nieuwenhuizen. 243 Alamy Images: Arco Images GmbH (c). R. Bertha. 212 Getty Images: Iconica/Michael Cogliantry (cl). 248-249 Photolibrary: Joel Sheagren Note: Any dogs that have appeared in this book with docked tails had the procedure done before laws were introduced to prohibit the practice in some countries.uk: 255 Acknowledgments Shane Wilkinson (br). Gwen Bailey Graham Bates. 240 FLPA: Imagebroker/Thorsten Eckert (br). Rex Features: Ken McKay (t). Lily Carlin Nicky Carlin. Tracy Lawrence Alistair Lion. many others. this book could never have been written.uk/www. 39 Alamy Images: Duravitski (bl). Jake. Topsy. 52 Corbis: Reuters/You Sung-Ho (br). Jose Leiva (tr). LLC (bc). Walter. Michael Donnelly Deborah Duguid Farrant Daniel Eaton.-L. Dorling Kindersley would like to thank the following: Color retouching: Craig Laker Additional help: Simon Murrell Additional design: Yenmai Tsang Illustrations: Richard Tibbits Savanagh Bryant. Getty Images: Stone/Sven Jacobsen (cl). Corbis: Jim Craigmyle (br). Alice Bungay Tracy Bungay. Charlie Chesil. FLPA: Erica Olsen (c). 210 Corbis: Lynda Richardson (br). Lola. Jessie.-L. PetStockBoys (t). and many.com: Rolf Klebsattel (clb). FLPA: Mike Lane (cr). Shelly Bushell Ben Carlin. Old Windsor Branch. and those who I’ve had fun with throughout my life. 246 Alamy Images: blickwinkel (br).canix. MDS Shows and Paws in the Park. Helen Gardom Kristina Glover. Iona Morris.com . Thank you. Billy. FLPA: Minden Pictures/Mark Ray Croft (tl). Harvey. Dave. Hero. Kate Lye. Penny. 42 Alamy Images: Juniors Bildarchiv (cla).chillpics. Tink. t=top. Jack.uk: Shane Wilkinson (cr). (tr). All other images © Dorling Kindersley For further information see: www. Diesel. Rosie. www. 223 Alamy Images: Arco Images GmbH (c). Thomas. 236 FLPA: Imagebroker/Alexander Trocha (cl). Sally Knight. Phil Ormerond. Fin. Jeremy Hugo Sophie Hugo.co. James Thorne Marie Travers. Nicolette O’Neill. Daniel Dempster Photography (tr). Boris. Moojah. Talula. Nigel Wright Thank you to all the dogs whose photographs appear in this book: Andy. David Summers.Acknowledgments The author would like to thank the following: All those who have so kindly and willingly contributed to my knowledge of dog training and behavior. 237 Rex Features: Keystone USA/SB. Ben. Sarah Tyzack Sophie von Maltzahn. & Hubert M. Bobs Broadbent and Kris Glover. Frances Johnstone Ali Kaye. Ian Tautz Siân Thomas. 245 Alamy Images: Sherab (cr). c=centre. Ian Dunbar. Victoria Wiggins Tomoko Wingate. r=right. Bella. Otto. Lettie. especially when I was losing mine. 71 Alamy Images: WoodyStock (c). Bobs Broadbent Imagebroker/Stefanie KrauseWieczorek (clb). Laura Andrews Lucy Avery. 247 Alamy Images: Ultimate Group. Fizz. Coco. And those who modelled in the book: Sandra Alden. I would like to thank the dogs.dkimages. Millie. Charlotte Pimm David Roberts. Ozzy. 241 Alamy Images: Ashley Cooper (bl). Lily. Jessica Ryan-Ndegwa Sebastian Ryan-Ndegwa.canix. Jess. 38 FLPA: Also. Rex Features: Newspix/Jody D’arcy (tl). also. Margaret and David Godel. Ruth O’Rourke. b=below. Shep. Libby. SHOUT (cr). Tom. Peter Thompson Dawn Thorne. Wendy Murphy. Spencer Spider. Bongo. www. Without what I have learned from them. Rachel Tooby and all the staff and dogs at Battersea Dogs and Cats Home. Scally. co. Hoola. Brad Murray and Jenny Woodcock. Elaine Hale Emma Hugo.chillpics. Barney. Gus. (bc) (br). I would also like to thank Bobs Broadbent and Kris Glover who helped organize dogs and people for the photos when I couldn’t be there. Corbis: Sygma/Yves Forestier (tr). 36 Getty Images: Altrendo (br). the late John Fisher.

and you will have a well-behaved dog for life.” Gwen Bailey Acknowledgments . Keep finding time for training sessions. make them fun for both of you.256 “Training is a life-long process.