Monday, February 28, 2011

Dog Toys

I love shopping for dog toys in fact my bank account groans everytime I go into a petstore. I love looking to see which toys are new and which ones my dogs would love. Koda loves anything that is rope or ball like, while Sophie likes anything that squeaks and Indy is the pickiest of all only liking really weird shaped toys.

Of course after buying toys that they love to play with, the hard part is making them last. Koda is very gentle with stuffed stoys but he chews the ends of his ropes, and tears apart his tennis balls. Sophie's toys are destroyed in her attempts to get all the squeaks out of the squeaker. Indy's version of playing is either fetch or destroy.

I personally love the Kong toys and Koda enjoys using his Kong as a replacement for a tennis ball. he can play fetch and still enjoy it another time. He isn't into having me fill it with anything for him though. For Sophie I try to buy different ball shaped squishy soft toys because they are easier for her to carry around. Although she has a Kong that squeaks she actually can't make it squeak. Indy isn't as into the Kong toys as you would think, the shape of a regular Kong just doesn't do anything for him. On a recent trip to the petstore I found that they have come out with a bone shaped toys with all kinds of bumps on it. I realize that this does kind of sound like an advertisement for Kong, but really they have toys for all my dogs. It is one brand that I like to stick too while I'm out draining my bank account on toys.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


The more dogs I work with the more I believe that dogs are much like children, one technique DOES NOT fit all. I have had the benefit of helping and training on my own of 6 very different dogs. I trained Jake a wirefox terrier, Holly a beagle, Koda a golden retriever, Mya a pug, Sophie a yorkie, and Indy a portugese water dog along with offering advice to friends and family on their pets. I'm certainly not qualified nor can I effectively train every dog just meet Sophie one little brat who manages to not be trained no matter what.

Koda was the first dog that I trained on my own. I would take him into our laundry room everyday and have training sessions. He was very food and praise motivated. Koda learned everything very quickly and was wonderful to have tagging along no matter where you went. The only things he didn't learn too well were that he is not a lap dog and leash manners. Both were not faults of his but rather of mine, I couldn't help but snuggle the little puppy on my lap and boy am I paying for it now when a 70 pound bottom lands on me. As for his leash manners, I live in the country and was more intent on having him learn off-leash manners and control. Therefore he has a great recall and continually checks in. Anytime I bring Koda with me someplace I am always complemented on his dark red colour and how well trained he is. I am amazed sometimes at the things he learns like knowing which rooms and beds he is allowed to sleep in, staying out of the kitchen when people are eating, playing hide and seek, and how to play with people or animals smaller than him. Overall he was a great first dog to train.

My dog training philosophy is to make sure that the dogs understand exactly what you want from them and when by introducing them to everything and anything. I am very big on the word NO and the word GOOD, along with the words TREATs. I prefer to begin with treats or food and move to including praise and then to just praise. Although many are not okay with it, I am actually okay with the occasional spank. When you compare methods used by humans with methods used by other dogs, I'm sure that being spanked it much more appreciated then being bit. Of course you should give warnings before doing so and it should only occur in repeated actions by the dog. Of course not all dogs respond to this type of training and I myself am still learning different and new methods with each dog I train.

I would love to eventually take a course on dog training and become certified, I feel it would be soo much fun to learn. If anyone has any suggestions for an online school or experiences that they have had I welcome the advice!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Adoption Weekend

We had a great time last weekend helping our humane society with their adoption weekend at petsmart. We petted the cats and walked the dogs. And even witnessed two adoptions! It was very hard to leave all the animals at the end. My little sister really bonded with the two dogs we helped with.

Molly, a 7m old lab mix


Lelo, a 3yr old Miniature Pinscher
They both needed work with children and she did great letting them lead the interactions. She respected their space yet encouraged them to bond with her. We have will definitely be volunteering for the next adoption weekend and trying to make a trip to the humane society to help more animals.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Oh Jack

Jack had some very strange habits, like snuggling Koda even while he growls and tries to move away (maybe he thinks the growls are purrs), refusing to snuggle with humans, attacking humans when they are walking and most recently climbing on top of my little sister's top bunk at about 5 am and throwing things off. He made so much noise that she woke up and saw things falling and ran out of her room scared.

Then this morning he killed a mouse in my parents room waking them up with all the commotion. That is his job to be on rodant patrol but lately he has been slacking and we recently discovered that it wasn't the dogs eating all the cat food but a family of moles, yes moles.

I have finally found some time to help out my local humane society and will be helping tomorrow at Petsmart for their adoption weekend for a few hours. I am very excited and can't wait to post pictures for you all.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Indy Recycles

Indy always manages to find the most interesting toys at the park. I used to bring a toy for him to play with but I stopped when I realized that he enjoys sticks, bottles and cans just as much. We do our part for the environment by helping to predestroy before we recyle.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Playing in the Park with Indy Day One

I went to visit my Dad this weekend and had a lovely walk with my Indy. I love taking him to a school near by and letting him run around in the fields.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Snow Warning

We are currently under snow warning this week but as I write there is no snow falling and no big winds, they will probably come as I make my way to work trapping me there with all the children instead. I do enjoy the children but after having the flu this weekend I'm not sure that I am quite up to handling them all. Yesterday was quite tiring. The snow would be nice to have more to play in and maybe hide all the bathroom spots right close to the house since both Sophie and Koda are slacking about making their way to the edge of the backyard. Hopefully we don't get too much but the weather forecasters are saying that we will probably get around 30cm. I might have to invest in boots for Sophie then! We will be doing lots of lazing around the woodstove if all that snow does come,