Puppy Class

Puppy Classes and Socialisation: – More recent thoughts on what might be best for developing our dogs and how your local creche or doggie day care can help you.  Unfortunately, the way many puppy classes are run and the information available about how to bring up a puppy and socialise them still seems to be a bit in the Dark Ages. Many people have still not heard about Dog Creches although they may be aware of Doggie Day Care.  Doggie Day Care is sometimes the same thing but many cater for smaller numbers, some looking after as few as 1 or 2 dogs.  A crecheRead More →

puppy

It has been generally considered that there are four stages to puppy socialisation.  However, according to Bradshaw, in his book “In Defence of Dogs” there may be more periods of socialisation, they may go on for longer and start even earlier than we think. The critical period is generally considered from birth to 12 weeks, although most researchers nowadays would agree that it goes on to 16 weeks.  This is where the development of the dog’s mind can be most influenced and will determine the kind of dog the puppy turns into.  It is important to realise, however, that each puppy will have individual characteristicsRead More →

The Law

Sticky

The Dangerous Dogs Act – Be aware of how it could apply to you and your dog even if your dog is acting fearfully and has innocently worried someone! It is more important than ever to understand the current law and how it can be interpreted.  Under the Act it is illegal for a dog to be “out of control” or to bite or attack someone.  OK, so this may seem obvious, but the legislation now makes it an offence if a person is “worried or afraid” of a dog and they feel that it is out of control. ‘Dangerously out of control’ is definedRead More →

excitement

Is your dog really happy – or is he over excited? When excitement does not equal happiness, but unbalanced, unhealthy behaviour… Sometimes when dogs are sent to me to have a holiday the owner will justify the over excited yapping and barking, the squeaking and leaping about as the dog being excited. What I often see however, is an unhealthy and unbalanced form of excitement, one that on closer examination is not doing the dog any good and is often linked with other behaviours that the owners mention, yet donʼt make the connection. Most of the dogs I see like this are sent for holidaysRead More →

Puppy Yume

I wanted to write this after a couple of recent conversations with friends. I often mention the antics of Yume (my adopted rescue dog) and how cheeky and naughty she is and that if I have not given her enough structure or mental stimulation she will bring out her blankets and chew them. Of course, she is not actually being naughty, she is just being a dog and acting her age, but in doing the job I do, my friends like to have a laught and poke fun from time to time! “Oh so you have a dog that is not perfect!… you should doRead More →

muzzle

Muzzles… There are so many negative things thoughts about muzzles and often people dislike them without knowing all the facts.  Of course, there are different types and they should be used in different ways for different purposes and they are not something anyone would want to use all the time.  However, there are times where they are beneficial and with the right muzzle, the experience does not have to be unpleasant for the dog – although personally, I too would not want the dog to have to wear one for extended periods of time.  Unfortunately with some breeds this is necessary and so the dogRead More →

Dog tricks

Lots of people who bring their dogs to me say the same thing, “I don’t want to teach my dog useless tricks”.  However, these tricks are not as useless as they might at first seem and have many benefits especially in a rehabilitation situation.  Of course, it is up to the individual what they do with their dog, but tricks serve a far greater purpose than people might think on the face of it. Firstly, most of our dogs were born to do a job and not as family pets!  This is something most people completely forget and rarely take into consideration when choosing aRead More →

Dog's diet

This article is reproduced by kind permission of Mrs Julia Langlands ACFBA BCCS.CanBhvPrac A diet that is high in protein can certainly affect behaviour in some dogs. Dogs on a diet containing too much protein can suffer from anxiety, aggression, restlessness, light sleep and depression. Too much protein in the diet can also exacerbate existing mental health/nervous system issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder. This is due to a lack of serotonin in the brain which regulates mood. Serotonin production relies heavily on the amino acid tryptophan which is found in many ‘dog friendly’ foods such as fish, eggs and wheat flour – although there isRead More →