Crate Training your Dog

May 3, 2013 by  
Filed under All Posts, Pet Dogs

Crate Training Your Dog

Dogs are pack animals that like to live as a family. When you buy a puppy, you become its family. One way, to help your new dog know how to act, is to crate train them.

What is Crate Training?

First, let us say that crate training is a temporary tool. It is not meant to be used as a long term measure to help with your dog’s behavior. So, let’s learn how and why it works.

Crate training uses a cage to help your new puppy adjust to life in your home. Once they are weaned from their mothers, puppies need support and guidance so that they are socialized to humans and living in a home.

The crate allows you to help them with such skills as:

– House breaking them
– Avoiding unwanted behaviors
– Provide a safe place to sleep and rest for your pet

Your dog is housed in the crate for a certain amount of time each day. The crate should be appropriate for the size and age of dog. Any pet put in one should have room to stand up and move around and lay down comfortably. Crates that are too large can encourage soiling. One that is too small can cause anxiety.

Since the crate is to act like a temporary home within a home, fill it with a cozy mat for napping and some toys for your dog to play with. Positioning the crate so the dog can interact with the family can ease anxiety.

To get your dog used to the crate, place them in with the door open. Let them know that they can come and go. Shutting the door lets them know that they must stay there for a while, such as with disciplinary action.

Why Crate Train?

Crate training is important at the beginning of your dog’s stay with your family. Here are a few reasons. One, it can help other pets get used to your new dog. Your new dog can have time alone when they don’t want to play anymore. It also gives them a chance to slowly integrate into the family dynamic.

Two, crate training can help with house breaking your new dog. Create a schedule with it. According to different ages, dogs are not to be crated past a certain bracket of time. For instance, a new puppy that is about ten weeks of age shouldn’t be crated for more than an hour at a time. Since pups have little bladder and bowel control, they should be ready to go outside after their hour in the crate, provided you feed them before crating time.

Three, unwanted behavior can be managed with a crate. They learn to associate spending time in the crate with the door closed with unwanted behaviors like chewing on the furniture, urinating throughout the house or barking loudly.

Crate training is meant to be helpful for you and your dog.

Animal-World’s Featured Pet of the Week: The Dalmation

July 1, 2012 by  
Filed under All Posts, Featured Pets, Pet Dogs

The Dalmatian

Animal-World’s Featured Pet for this week is: The Dalmatian!

Have you ever seen the movie or heard the story of 101 Dalmatians? Most likely, the answer is yes! Almost everyone is familiar with it. The every day person probably has a love for Dalmatians simply because of the popularity of the story – I mean who couldn’t love a hyper and super cute white and black-spotted dog!

Dalmatians are actually a very old breed and are also known as a symbol for firemen. They have traditionally helped firemen fight fires and are very good at it due to their nature. These dogs have tons of energy, love people, are very playful, and are extremely intelligent. Because of this they can make very good companions for a variety of different people. As well as good fire dogs, they can also often make good guard dogs, hound dogs, carriage dogs, and war dogs! Other names the Dalmatian goes by include Firehouse Dog, Dalmatiner, Carriage Dog, and many others.

As for the history of this dog, it is not known for sure exactly where it originated. It is definitely a very old breed of dog, but whether or not the Dalmatian started out in Dalmatia, a section of Croatia, is debated. It has made appearances in ancient Egyptian art as well. They are a non-sporting dog breed with a very unique spotted coat. When they are born they are completely white, but as they grow they develop spots. These spots are often black, but can also be brindle, blue, or lemon colored. There are also several Dalmatian hybrids. Two popular ones are the Sharmatian (Dalmatian and Shar-Pei mix) and the Chimation (Dalmatian and Chihuahua mix).

The care and feeding of these dogs is what is expected of any dog, but should be taken seriously. Taking them to their regular annual check-ups and giving them their shots is a must in order to keep them at their best health-wise. Their diet should actually not be too heavy on protein because they are prone to urinary problems and too much protein can facilitate these. Dog foods that are mostly rice, poultry, and lamb are the best choice. Dalmatians can be kept both indoors and outdoors. However, if they are kept indoors they should be allowed out regularly to play and taken on walks because they are very energetic dogs. Also, they shed heavily twice a year, and so must be regularly brushed and the house should be vacuumed frequently. Baths should be infrequent.

Socially, these dogs make pretty good companions overall. They get along with most people, including children, as well as with other pets. Males (especially if not neutered) may be more aggressive towards other male dogs, so take caution if you have more than one male dog. Very small children may also not be the best companions for them because these dogs are so hyper.

The Dalmatian is quite intelligent, which makes them an ideal dog for obedience training, housebreaking, and learning tricks. This is why they are used for many important jobs such as firehouse dogs and guard dogs.

The two main health problems for these dogs are urinary problems and skin allergies. As I mentioned before, limiting protein and watching their diet can generally help with their urinary problems. They may still need medication however. If your Dalmatian develops skin problems, check out their living conditions and consult your veterinarian. Sometimes indoor carpet and furniture can contribute to skin allergies, so it is important to determine what is causing them. Deafness can also run in the family, so check for a family history of deafness before purchasing a particular dog.

Overall, Dalmatians are considered great pets! You should look for a reputable breeder before purchasing one and keep in mind that prices can vary greatly. Read more about these dogs on Animal-World’s Dalmatian page!

Jasmine is a team member at Animal-World and has contributed many articles and write-ups.