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Dog Training Classes, Ashhurst Palmerston North start Sunday 3rd September @ 1.30pm, min class size 3, max size 6, means more time spent with you and your dog. “Book Now” to secure your place.

Dog Training Classes, Ashhurst Palmerston North start Sunday 3rd September @ 1.30pm, min class size 3, max size 6, means more time spent with you and your dog. “Book Now” to secure your place.

Dog Training Classes with an expert dog trainer and behaviorist The course is very comprehensive and unlike others, covers more than just dog obedience & dog behaviour.

Small classes max no 5, Min 3, so you will learn more and I can spend more time with you and your dog. unlike some of the larger classes.

To secure your place, Book Now! Start: Ashhurst Domain, Palmerston North, Sunday 3rd September 2017@ 1.30pm. Suitable for dogs of all ages.

Classes are kept, as age appropriate as possible. I will teach you how to handle your dog in real life situations.

The course teaches you: How to Effectively communicate With Your Dog & How Dogs Communicate With Each Other. Commands: Sit, Stay, Recall, Down, Social Walking (loose lead/heel) Stand, Leave It (visit Turid Rugaas link on this blog to gain a better insight on how dogs communicate, with each other). Covers Minor Behaviour’s Such As: Jumping Up, Digging Holes, Pulling On The Lead etc

My aim is to also promote dog safety & awareness so this class also covers: How to socialize your dog, the right way. Basic dog behaviour & safety around dogs & people/Dog bite prevention, Responsible Dog Ownership/Dog Control Act, Introduction to Canine Parkour (Urban Agility)

Making a dog safety difference in 2017, most dog bites are preventable. It would be great if we could all in a small way help, turn the tide and try to reduce, through education, the number dog bites/ dog attacks in NZ.

Hopefully along the way, prevent someone from getting bitten and save a few dogs, a one way trip to the vet.

Course cost: $110 (FAQ sheets included) runs for 4 weeks (4 x 1 hour sessions) For more information visit: http://www.zerobitesdogtraining.com/BLT.html  or fill out the form below.

 
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Posted by on August 12, 2017 in About

 

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Dog Training Q & A to some frequently asked questions & queries

Dog Training Q & A to some frequently asked questions & queries

I thought I would do a Q & A page to answer some commonly asked questions and queries I frequently receive. This page will be updated as more Q & A are added.

Q 1.  Do you offer a performance guarantee?

Sorry no, I do not. When it comes to dog training, there are too many variables, I have no control of, to offer any kind of guarantee. Dog training is all about me teaching you how to handle/communicate and train your dog. Your dog may listen to me but your dog isn’t my dog, you have to do the work.  I can only advise, guide & show, I can’t make you listen and take note of my advice or suggestions. Neither can I make you work and spend time with your dog as required, on a daily basis.

Although, I can ask you to let me know, if something I have shown you, isn’t working for you, I can’t rely on you telling me. Dog training is about commitment,  there are no quick fixes when it comes to training your dog.

Trades people such as plumbers, mechanics etc, may guarantee their work and guarantee’s apply on most consumer  goods, eg cars, TV’s, fridge/freezers and the like. As with any written guarantee, you need to read the fine print, re conditions that can make guarantee null & void.

Some dog trainers may offer a guarantee, it maybe just a gimmick, to increase their client base, you need to read the small print.

Q 2. Are you a dog whisperer?

Dog whisperer is a phrase,  which has been used quite frequently since Robert Redford movie the “Horse Whisperer” was released in 1998. it was based on the 1995 novel “The Horse Whisperer” by Nicholas Evans.

In fact, All animals speak to us, if we as humans, choose to watch, listen and learn. So, no, I am not a dog whisperer but like many other people I can read and understand dogs and what they are trying to tell us.

Many dog trainers/behaviourists, over the years have used the phrase “dog whisperer”, as a good marketing tool, to increase their client base and revenue.

Q 3. Do you only hold “group dog training classes” on a Sunday?

Yes I do, I find for most people, the time and day is more convenient.

Q 4. When is your next Canine Parkour Class (urban agility)?

I am sorry but due to the lack of interest, I no longer hold Canine Parkour classes. I do however include an introduction to canine parkour, in my group classes and private training packages. I also offer a one hour private parkour training session, to anyone who is interested.

Q 5. Hi, just wondering when your next Pet Support Group meeting is?

Again, unfortunately due to the lack of interest, I know longer offer this free service.

Q 6. Do you train when its raining?

Yes I do, I train in all weather, unless it is extreme, or there is a possibility of someone getting injured e.g. Its a very windy day and there’s bark or branches breaking off trees and being tossed around, by the wind.  They have the potential to harm. So I will cancel, I usually contact people via phone or text. So, if the weather is a bit crappy, don’t assume I am going to cancel.  If you don’t hear from me, its still on.

 Q 7. Why do your classes cost more than the dog training clubs?

Volunteer club members, run the classes and they only charge a nominal amount to cover their basic costs. That is why their courses run for longer and cost less. Unlike myself and many other trainers, we have to cover our costs and live.

 

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2017 in About

 

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How to Introduce dogs and cats to each other

Zues

Zues

I have had a few inquiries lately on how to introduce cats and dogs. So I thought I would repost this article.

The ideal way of course is to have both the puppy and kitten grow up together. Dogs and cats can become great friends but just like with people, there are some who may not get along, no matter what you try to do. I have both cats and dogs and yes some play well together and some don’t.

It can take a while for your cat and dog to become used to being around each other, there are no quick fixes, it could take weeks or even months. One of the main things not to do, is try to force your cat and dog to meet each other, they have to do it on their own terms. Both the cat and dog need their own space, somewhere safe where they can go. A dog crate is ideal for your dog and the cats need a bolt hole too, such as another room or the like.

When first introducing your dog to your cat, make sure the cat is safe in another room and your dog is on the leash, you must have control of the situation, so you need to be confident in what you are doing as there really is no room, for human error.

If your dog isn’t great at listening or focusing on you, work needs to be done, obedience training and enrichment games such as Canine Parkour will help with that. You need to have your dogs full attention.

So now it begins, let your cat out of the room and let it wander around, you should have your dog on a lead and focusing on you, have it sit, if your dog starts jumping around make it sit and tell it to Leave It” if it starts barking tell it to be “Quiet” if that doesn’t work, try some water and vinegar in a squirt bottle. Squirt it in your dogs face. The dog crate is also a useful tool, crate your dog and let the cat in the room to wander around.  You have to be watching all the time in other words no distractions. If your dog starts barking you can also cover the crate so the dog can’t see, until it calms down. Depending on your circumstances the introductions may have to be little and often. If you are out all day, never leave the cat and dog home alone together. Make sure they are both safe and away from each other.

After a few weeks of constant and consistent training, you maybe able to let your dog off the leash or out of the crate with a muzzle on and watch how the cat and dog interact.

Some may think this is harsh or not fair on the dog but its better than finding your cat dead. Even after all this training, your dog and cat maybe ok when you are around but when you are not around, all bets are off.

I personally have a dog in the house with me, who killed a cat in his past life before he came to live with me, that was why he was rehomed.

My cat has grown up with dogs but it took her 3 weeks before she even came to check Zues out. I used the crate or put him in the kennel when I was’t around. After quite a long time they lost interest in each other,

I corrected Zues every time he even looked at my cat the wrong way. Now I can leave both of them, home alone together. They are not friends but they tolerate each other and both have their own space. I have on occasion caught them sleeping together, if you can call it that, Zues at one end of his couch and Turbo at the other.

Here are a couple of good articles, one written by Ed Fawley, from Leerburg Dog Training and the other by HEART animal rescue and adoption team Inc

Introducing Dogs or Puppies into Homes with Cats by Ed Fawley

Introducing a new cat to Pets  by HEART

 

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on December 11, 2016 in About

 

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Dog Parks, Good or bad idea?

Dog Parks, Good or bad idea?

I am personally not a great fan of dog parks because when many dog owners (not all) see the sign “Dog Park” they think it gives them the right, to let their dogs, run amok with no consequences.

Dog Parks are specifically designed for dogs and their owners but they are no different, to any other Public Park that allows “Off Leash or On Leash Dogs” when it comes to the “Dog Control Act”, Manners & Etiquette, Common Sense and dog owners being aware, of where their dog is and what it is doing. Dog parks are not for all dogs.

Dogs like humans, can become stressed, distressed, fearful, overly excited or aggressive. While others may be bullied or be bullies.

Dogs need their owners to stand up, protect and watch out for them, even at the dog park. Same as you would look out for, and help a human friend, if they were in trouble or needed any kind of help.

All dogs speak to us, if we as humans choose to watch, listen and learn. If your dog is aggressive a dog park isn’t the place for it, same can be said if your dog is a bit nervy or fearful. Also, bitches on heat need to be kept away from any park.

I personally believe, dog parks should have information on dog park manners, etiquette & rules, posted by the gate entry, to the park, of what is expected from dog owners and their dogs, so everyone can have an enjoyable time, at the park.

In some states in the US they have compliance officers randomly visiting parks. They have the power to issue on the spot fines, if dog owners don’t have their dogs under control, in other words, their dogs are causing a nuisance or are problem. Also, in some US states, dog owners who wish to run their dog, off-leash are required to apply for an off leash licence. Food for thought NZ

Some of you may think I am anti off-leash dogs, in fact I am not, I am only anti dog owners, who do not have their dogs under control. Whether it be a dog park, park, beach, reserve or the like. If it is open to the public, everyone has the right to be there and enjoy their day, without being harassed by someone’s dog. Not all people love dogs, not all dogs, love other dogs, and so on.

I do believe, dog parks should have, separate areas for both small and big dogs, so they can  run around and play safely. Some big dogs may see smaller dogs as prey and may kill them, if given the chance. Before anyone throws their hands up in horror, it happens! Same may happen in a boarding kennel/doggy day care environment, if small and big dogs are run together.

That is why it is so important to have someone physically present, watching the dogs behaviour, at all times.

Below are a few links to articles and information on Dog Parks and Off & On-leash Pros & Cons.

Dogs off leash but not under control    Dog Park Etiquette  Canine Parkour (urban agility)

Off Leash Dogs in Public Areas: No Manners, Common Sense or are some just confused!

Socializing your dog, the right way        At the Dog Park The Importance of Participating

Three Dogs Who Shouldn’t Be at the Dog Park or Daycare   10 best dog parks in the US

When is a Dog Park not a Dog Park? When its a Public Park or Reserve!

Robin Bennett – The Keys to a Positive & Safe Dog Park Experience

 
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Posted by on November 8, 2016 in About

 

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Dogs, Chicken & Boxes = FUN

Dogs, Chicken & Boxes = FUN

Dogs, chicken & boxes = Fun scent work for you and your dog.  Scent work is a great workout for dogs, it can be both mentally and physically challenging. It can be done indoors or outdoors, so if the weather isn’t that great and your dog is chomping at the bit and maybe driving you crazy, hiding a few treats around the house can give your dog a bit of a work out.

Today we decided to hide chicken in the boxes, they didn’t need a lot of motivation to go and hunt it out. We placed the chicken under and in the boxes, on trees and around a car. below is a few photos I took today of the dogs having a great time, in fact we all had a good time.

 
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Posted by on June 18, 2016 in About

 

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Another great video from Stopthe77 for kids on how to greet a dog safely. Pet Pat Pause. Also good for adults to learn as well.

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2016 in About

 

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Lets get real, Is the dog really to blame?

Lets get real, Is the dog really to blame?

Well, I feel like I am a broken record saying the same thing over and over again, when it comes to Dog Safety and how to stay safe around dogs.

The reported dog attacks over the last few weeks here in NZ, are certainly a cause for concern but are the dogs really to blame? Easier to blame the dog than the owner or the person who was supposed to be supervising because they can’t stand up for themselves and tell their side of the story.  Dogs don’t just bite, most bites are the caused by inappropriate behaviour by adults and children   as well as people not seeing and reading the dogs warning signs. All too often the dog pays the price, with its life.

77% of dog bites come from the family dog or a friends dog and a good percentage of the victims are children. Many, not all, of these bites stem from inappropriate greetings and play as well as, dogs being generally put in, bad situations

While it may be good the media report and highlight these instances they fuel the fire but we “the public” very rarely get to hear the full story.

In my opinion, there are 3 things which have greatly contributed to the rise in dog bites/attacks over the last few years in both children and adults. 77% of dog bites come from the family dog or a friends dog and a good percentage of the victims are children. Many, not all, of these bites result from inappropriate greetings and play.

1. Human Complacency.

People feel too comfortable & secure and don’t see or are unaware/oblivious to the potential dangers living with a dog can bring. Dogs have been put on a pedestal, too much is expected of them. They have to act and behave and be good dogs, in any given situation. As if humans would do the same, if the roles were reversed. Dogs are not human they don’t think the same as we do, they need to be treated with respect and understanding. After all we are living with an animal that can move faster than us in everyway, who has teeth that can do a lot of damage and in many cases is stronger than us.  If I were not talking about a dog but another animal, say a Tiger, Horse or even a Cat, would people be so complacent?

2.  A she’ll-be-right attitude, which is quite self explanatory

3. People looking but not seeing.

Lack of supervision, supervision for many  these days means taking a quick glance around at what the dog, kids or other adults are doing while chatting on the phone. working on the computer, having coffee with friends maybe even in another room, going for a walk with your dog and not paying attention to what is going on around you. The list is endless. If you can’t be watching 100% of the time, its quite easy to remove the dog or person/people from the situation, and if you are out walking, leash your dog.

By looking and not seeing, you are not seeing if your dog is, being teased, harassed, bullied or is or is frightened, stressed or distressed. All animals talk to us including dogs, (via body language) if we choose to watch and listen. As humans, we won’t tolerate being teased, harassed or bullied, so why should dogs?  As humans, we may feel frightened, stressed or distressed at times and what do we do?   We seek help, comfort, support, so why not help, comfort and support, dogs. After all they are supposed to be mans best friend, so dog owners need to become educators  so they can teach others including non dog owners, how to act, behave and communicate, when in the company of their dog or anyone else’s.

So what do dogs need from us? they need love, boundaries, rules, guidance, protection, consistency and a safe place to call their own, a place they can go, to have a break, from kids, you, your friends, other dogs and to just chill. They need time spent with them on a daily basis. They need you to understand them and stand up for them, when they are unhappy, stressed, frightened or are being teased, harassed or bullied. They need you to look and see and not to be complacent, and not to be afraid to say NO to that child or adult or even another dog & owner, if their behaviour is unacceptable. Remember, dog owners its ok to say “NO”

Always remember, its your dog, your house, your rules and when you are out its your dog your rules.

These days there is a lot of information about dog safety out there and there is no real reason why people should not be, well informed. I often hear “my dog is good with kids” (maybe be good with your kids but not someone else’s) “my dog won’t bite”(any dog will bite given the right set of circumstances) “my dog is a good dog” even good dogs bite if they are teased, hit, abused or put in a bad situation.

I personally hand out dog safety information along with the training FAQ sheets to all my clients. If they are new expectant parents I cover that also. I find myself now teaching people how to protect themselves when they are out walking, with or without their dog, from unwanted attention from off leash dogs, which in reality, I shouldn’t have to  be doing.

If we want to turn the tide and reduce the number of dog bites/attacks maybe its time that all dog trainers/behaviourists, training clubs, vets who run puppy schools, private trainers, SPCA, Rescues, Schools and Plunket get on board and provide basic dog safety information to their clients, children and parents. All people, (children & adults)) whether they are dog owners or not, need to know how to act and behave when in the company of dogs. All dogs speak to us, if we choose to watch and listen.

 
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Posted by on May 9, 2016 in About

 

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