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Ty the Dog Guy on the Daily
4 minutes | Jul 5, 2017
He Has One Problem
Owners frequently call us to say: “My dog is amazing, but he has one problem!” That problem might be something comparatively small, or it might be something bigger. It’s always bizarre to hear someone say “My dog’s perfect except for the fact that he attacks other dogs.”
7 minutes | Jul 4, 2017
Take A Rest: Understanding Recovery Time
Let’s dig deep into this. A dog’s nervous system controls its ability to process stress. Fear, anxiety, and aggression all come from a place of stress. Your dog’s nervous system dictates how well he or she will press that stress. A strong nervous system can handle a lot of stress, while a weak one can only handle stress for a shorter period of time.
5 minutes | Jul 3, 2017
Fun In The Sun: How To Take Your Dog Off Leash
Summer is on its way, and that means that everyone is going to be at the park with their dog. We’re going to be camping, hiking, and fishing . It’s fun to take our dogs along too! Many people want to take their dogs on these adventures off-leash, and unfortunately most of these people shouldn’t. Have you ever been out in public and had a dog run right up to you? Usually the owner is calling out “Don’t worry, he’s friendly!” That doesn't matter. What if I were terrified of dogs or allergic to them? What if my dog wasn’t friendly?
6 minutes | Jun 30, 2017
How Should I Interact With Service Dogs?
The message I want to convey boils down to this: leave dogs alone when you’re in public! When you see a dog, especially a service dog, just leave it alone. I know that’s tough for a lot of people. I probably don’t understand this urge to interact with dogs, because I’m surrounded by dozens of them every day and usually fulfill my “dog quota” with no problem. But there is nothing more frustrating to a service dog’s trainer or handler than to be out in public teaching the dog and be constantly interrupted by folks who just want to chat.
4 minutes | Jun 29, 2017
No Practice Required: How To House Train Your Puppy
Someone called into our Salt Lake City training center to ask me to come to their home and house train their dog. As I explained that we only train at the center, I realized that going to the house wouldn't even be necessary. In fact, I’ve house trained hundreds of dogs without ever once seeing the houses they lived in.
5 minutes | Jun 28, 2017
In Your Face: How To Approach A Dog
I have plenty of clients with dogs that are big and cute. Some of these dogs also, unfortunately, have aggression issues. Frequently the owner will be walking their dog on the street and have to deal with a difficult situation: a neighbor sees the dog, lights up with a smile, and runs across the road to get in the dog’s face and say hello.
6 minutes | Jun 27, 2017
Spring Cleaning: Structuring Motion and Silence
Right now, it’s starting to feel a little bit like spring in Utah. It seemed like winter lasted forever! We had two inches of snow down here in the valley last week, and there’s still snow on the mountains. Utah Sometimes it feels like winter ends in May and spring only lasts a month until we’re into summer.
5 minutes | Jun 26, 2017
Take Off Your Pants: How To Use Repetition in Dog Training
In this post, I want to ask you to do something. You don’t need to do it right now, especially if you're at school or in your office or at another public place. (In fact, if that’s the case, please save this task for later!) The next time you're getting dressed, put your pants on the other way: if you're used to putting in your left leg first, then try to put in your right leg and then your left.
4 minutes | Jun 23, 2017
Dog Obedience Myths: Selective Listening
This post might be out to burst your bubble, because in it I want to talk about selective hearing. Here’s why what I’m about to say might disappoint you: dogs don't have selective hearing in quite the way you think they do. Selective hearing is what most people blame when they say things like: “Sometimes I call my dog and he looks around and thinks about it, but decides not to come” or “I tell my dog to sit, but he’s pretty selective about whether he obeys.”
4 minutes | Jun 22, 2017
Singin’ In The Rain: How To Keep Training Fresh
I love summer. I love not worrying about wearing shoes. I love leaving the house in shorts and no jacket without worrying about getting cold. I hate the rain and the snow and anything falling out of the sky. (Why do I live in Utah, you’re probably asking!) So the rain we’ve been getting recently has really dragged on me, but there is a bit of a silver lining.
6 minutes | Jun 21, 2017
Survival of the Fittest: Weakness and Leadership
In today’s post, I want to address the topic of weakness. Now, we like to believe that we’ve evolved to a level where we don't pick on the weak, at least as adults. As an adult, I know that . As a kid, I definitely picked on those who were weaker at times and got picked on for being weaker at others. But as we mature, we like to think that we’re beyond that. Hopefully we are!
5 minutes | Jun 20, 2017
How To Walk And Heel Responsibly
When I was sixteen years old, I got my driver’s license. Like plenty of other sixteen-year-olds, that meant that I started ditching school and doing other stuff. I was determined to find fun stuff to do. On one of these days, I ditched school with a friend to check out the military surplus store, one of those places where you can buy tents and fishing supplies and other military supplies. We didn’t have one of them in our town, but the next town over—Livermore—did.
6 minutes | Jun 20, 2017
Hedging Your Bets: Dog Training As Insurance
In this post, I want to talk about insurance. The other day, I started to think about investing in dog training kind of reminds me of the way that people . When I say “investing,” I am talking partially about money, but I’m also talking about effort and time and engagement—everything that goes into the process of training a dog.
5 minutes | Jun 20, 2017
Off the Hook: How To Train With E-Collars
In this post, I want to address some of the challenges of the electric training collar. Those of you who know a little about my company know that we use these collars with most of our clients. We do this because, done correctly, the collar allows us to get to an advanced level of off-leash obedience quickly, while being very humane and easy on both the dog and the owner.
3 minutes | Jun 20, 2017
What’s The Deal With Dog Training?
In this post, I want to address what dog training really is. I have a very linear mindset, and I’m always trying to fit things into a logical, “A-to-B” framework. When I do reduce dog training to its core, I come up with one concept: controlling outcomes. If you can manage that for a long enough time, then you’ve trained your dog.
6 minutes | May 22, 2017
Dog Chewing and the Collateral Effect
I went over to the house and put together a big list of what I wanted them to do regularly. I wanted them to sneak up on him and correct him with the e-collar anytime they saw him chewing, to make sure he had plenty of toys to chew on, to create something called a surrogate (which I’ll address in another post.) The last thing I told them to do was take him on focused walks. They were already walking him every day for 30—40 minutes, but he pulled. We taught him how to walk properly in that session, and I made sure they understood to walk him in a focused manner—right next to their side—from that point on.
4 minutes | Apr 21, 2017
Good Dog: How To Set Specific Expectations
In today’s post, I’d like to talk about our expectations for our dogs. We train a lot of service dogs, but this advice applies to any dog. Many people say that they want their dog to watch over them or their kids. When I ask them what this specifically means, they say that they want their dog to “keep them safe.” What does that mean? “Just make sure that we don’t get hurt.”
6 minutes | Apr 20, 2017
Not Your Baby: How To Think About Dog Aggression
In this short post, I’d like to talk specifically to people who treat their dogs as if they’re kids. Now, I love both my dogs and my kids. Sometimes even I feel that I love my dogs as much as my kids. But even if you do, there has to be a distinction drawn between them. The reason? Knives.
6 minutes | Apr 19, 2017
Barber Shop Blues: How To Understand Dog Communication
Right now I’m in Savannah, Georgia for my bother’s wedding. I never bring a razor with me when I travel, so I really needed to shave and my hair was getting long. Now, I’ve been shaving my head by myself for about twenty years. I’m a pretty utilitarian guy. I wear Carhartt shirts every day and try to keep everything simple without fuss or maintenance, so I hadn’t been in a barber’s chair in twenty years.
6 minutes | Apr 18, 2017
Lead On: How To Understand Dominance
In this post, I’d like to share a few of my thoughts about dominance. There is a preconception out there among dog trainers that dominance doesn’t exist, founded on the idea that dogs aren’t actually pack animals (which may or may not be true). This idea has gained a lot of traction during the last few years.
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