Monday, June 24, 2013

You may have experienced it, the moment your dog growls. Often times people ask, how will you know if it is play or serious? You will know when your dog is serious and when it is play. When a dog is serious and growling everything will be very still, it is unnerving. Most dogs will typically freeze, be very stiff and could even be looking at you out of the corner of their eye. A play growl, everything about your dog is loose. They are often followed by a play bow or lots of lateral movement.
There are different reasons a dog may growl. Sometimes they growl because they are guarding a toy, food, or they are uncomfortable in a situation. The biggest and most important things about growling is NEVER punish it.

 What is a growl?
 A warning.
What usually follows a growl if not listened to?
A bite.

So if we punish the warning then we skip the chance to fix whatever it is that is making our dog uncomfortable and we may end up just getting the bite. We've all heard it, "There was no warning" although there were plenty of subtle warnings, the one that gets the attention is growling and without it, most people don't notice the subtleties. When the day comes that your dog growls I want you to ask yourself, "What has changed or is going on that is causing my dog to growl?" and then change it and work on conditioning your dog in the scenario by talking to a professional positive dog trainer.

Photo of Green Acres Kennel Shop
In this image the Ember is resource guarding. She has a very bad resource guarding problem especially from other dogs and from people depending on the item. Notice the stiffness in her body, looking at the camera out of the corner of her eye, also called half moon eyes, the snarl on her lip, ears are forward and alert  and I'm sure she is emanating a growl.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Slow Motion - Dog Drinking Water

A little video on how a dog drinks water, I had never given it much thought but it is kind of neat. Is your dog a tidy drinker or one that leaves a wet trail from the water bowl?


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