Feeding your dog Life’s Abundance Premium Dog Food is a great step in the right direction of providing him with the bond and safety he craves and needs.  In addition, obedience and behavior training is very important in assuring that you have a great dog for life and the proper companion for the entire family.

We would like to share some of the articles we have written over the years and continue to write regarding dog safety, obedience, and behavior.  We hope you enjoy them.

How Can I Avoid Dog Bites?

There probably aren’t a lot of us who have been bitten by dogs.  I am pretty sure that most of us have been afraid that a dog was going to bite us.  We felt afraid and did not have any control of the situation or what would happen next.  Most of the time, we didn’t get bitten or nipped.  We were really happy with the outcome, but confused why it went so well.

When it comes to dog bites, it is often about what you don’t do as opposed to what you do.  We often hear the term “running away from the problem” and that is what we sometimes to when faced with an unknown and potentially dangerous situation.  Is that the right thing?

On the other hand, we are told not to move when confronted with an unknown and dangerous situation.  If we don’t move, maybe we will “become invisible”.  Is that the right thing?

We often focus on “the right thing” as it relates to humans.  The problem we should address is “the right thing” when it comes to dogs.  They communicate differently that we communicate.  When we are trying to say “I mean you no harm”, they may interpret our communication as “bring it on!”.

So, to answer the original question… Yes, you can definitely avoid dog bites.  The important point you must always remember is that you must communicate your passive intentions in a way that the dog understands.  The appropriate method is often counter intuitive to everything we have been taught in the past. When you stay true to communicating as a canine, you will keep your fingers and toes.

Robin and I have a great dog training article that explains all of this by walking you through the two most common “dog bite” scenarios.  I can testify that they have worked for me.  Please take a look at our training article titled “How Can I Avoid Dog Bites”.

Avoid Dog Bites

What Toys Are Bad for My Dog or Puppy?

Most parents would never give their young children toys with sharp points that could stab or poke.  They would never give their kids blunt toys that could hit and hurt.  Although they could have been “a lot of fun for the kids”, they would probably be used to harm siblings and possibly parents.

And, as kids, how many of us have heard “Don’t rough house in the living room! Go outside and play!”. Again, our parents were trying to establish behaviors and boundaries that were appropriate for a safe and properly run family.

Wow! Now that I think about it, there were a lot of things our parents had to worry about and manage with our toys and our actions. Although, at the moment, what we were playing with or how we were playing were not that important, the long-term implications were important.  They didn’t want us to destroy the furniture and knock all the pictures off the wall.  They didn’t want us to think that it was OK to stab people and beat them over the heads.

Now let’s turn our attention from our parent’s decision about our toys to our decision with our dog’s toys.  We give our dog toys because we love him and want to make him happy and have fun.  We use toys when we play with our dog.

So, why does our dog start to become dominant and stop listening to us when we give him toys?  Is it the toy?  Is it how we play with him?  Are toys just a bad thing to give to our dog? Robin and I have a great article that explains what is happening and what you should do. Please check out our dog training article titled “What Toys Are Bad for My Dog or Puppy”.

Dog Toys

Can I Play with My Dog Outside in the Summer Heat?

There is an old saying, “Mad dogs and Englishmen to out in the midday sun”.  This is actually part of the lyrics of a song written in the 1930’s.  Although I always talk about dogs of the canine variety, this phrase references “Mad Dogs” as a slang that means someone who is wild and crazy.

So, when I see someone out in the middle of a hot summer day taking their dog for a long walk or playing fetch with them in the park, I definitely see one “canine” dog and one “mad dog”. Please don’t get me wrong, there are times where you may have to take your dog out in the middle of a summer day for some exercise, potty time, etc.  Our responsibility as dog owners is not to be “mad dogs”, but responsible dog owners.  What does this mean?

Well, the biggest thing that we can remember is if we are outside and we feel hot, our dog will feel really hot.  Unfortunately, they can’t tell us that “It is just too darn hot out here!  I want my air conditioning!  By the way, where is the lemonade?”

Because our dogs may have been cooped up all morning, they may be extremely excited just to be out and play.  They may not feel the high temperature because of their adrenalized state.  This can lead to heat exhaustion and even worse.

We must be acutely aware of the temperature and activities we are performing with our dog while out in the summer heat.  By monitoring our activities and the physical environment while outside, we can keep our dogs safe while still allowing them their external play time.  Robin and I have a great article that will provide you with the steps you need to take to have a safe play time with your dog outside this summer.  Please take a look at our dog training article titled “Can I Play with My Dog Outside in the Summer Heat”.

Play with your dog in the summer heat

How Do I Get My Dog to Like His Dog House?

All dogs need places that they can consider safe and secure.  These places are normally consistent, well defined, and often include some sort of containment.  Some of the obvious ones are under the bed, at a corner of a room, on the far sofa, or a dog bed by the fireplace.  There are obviously many others, these are just examples that come to mind.

The one common thread between all these locations is that your dog has picked these locations.  You may think that they were your idea, but that is not the case.  Yes, you may have fed him by the fireplace or bonded through playtime by the sofa, but that did not create a safe place.  They were simply actions that you performed that associated a place as safe.  Your dog was the final decision maker concerning the appropriate real estate.

So, let’s talk about dog houses for a moment.  Dog Houses are the “classic place” we get for our dog to hang out in the back yard.  We believe that they will naturally love them because, if we have houses, they should have houses too.  I am not sure where that is written down, but it isn’t.

A dog house is just “another place” around our home.  It may be inviting to our dog because it is enclosed from the elements and he is the only one that goes inside, but it does not naturally say “Home”.

Remember how our dog loves to be under the bed, on the sofa, etc.?  Those are safe places for him.  We need to have him associate the (his) dog house as a safe place as well.  Remember how we may feed our dog in a place they feel safe or play with them in their happy spot?

We need to socialize and educate our dog that the dog house is also a happy spot and safe place for them.  There are multiple steps that we need to perform to make this take place.  Robin and I have a great dog training article that will quickly transform the dog house that you brought home from the pet store into your dog’s happy and safe place.  Please check out our article titled “How Do I Get My Dog to Like His Dog House?”

Dog House

What’s the Difference Between a Dog Bite and Dog Nip?

At the “fifty-thousand-foot level”, a dog bite and a dog nip may appear the same.  They both occur when a dog puts his mouth on our skin and leaves a puncture.  This puncture may be very, very small and may be nothing more than a scratch, but we still often say “That dog bit me!”

Words are just words.  The problem is how we deal with our interpretation of the words and the consequences that follow.

Both dog bites and dog nips can hurt and be very scary at the time.  The big difference that we often overlook is that a dog bite is normally more severe than a dog nip.  To put it into perspective, a nip often only requires a little antiseptic and a band aid.  A dog bite often requires a trip to the twenty-four-hour urgent care and some stitches.

So, the bite or nip happens.  What comes next?  Normally you will become very mad and aggressively punish your dog.  You feel that this is the right thing to do because you “really want to let the dog know he did a bad thing” and you “often feel better after doing it”.

Does this solve anything?  Probably not.  The key factor you are missing is to understand why your dog acted the way that he did?  Was it because he was scared or is he truly aggressive and vicious? The answer to this question will determine your dog’s true nature and the reason for his action.

It could be possible that, even though your dog bit a person, it was not his fault at all.  He may have been reacting to a perceived inappropriate action by the person.  Robin and I have a wonderful article that will put all of this into perspective. Please read our dog training blog titled “What’s the Difference Between a Dog Bite and Nip”

Dog Nip

Should My Dog Be Outside Without a Leash?

Let’s just get to it and answer this question right away.  Robin and I never condone having a dog off leash when you and your dog are outside and in a non-contained area.  But “You aren’t you dog trainers?” you ask. “Can’t you train a dog to always stay by their owner’s side or always come to them when called?”

In “the real world”, everything is based on probability.  What is the probability that something will happen?  What is the possibility of a future result?  Except for the answer to the question “What is 1+1?”, everything is based on “I think that…; I believe…; I am positive…; I am really, really sure that…”. These all leave the possibility of something unplanned happening.

The more we prepare and educate, the better we may be prepared and the better the odds of achieving the result we want.  But the bottom line is that there is always the possibility for something that we do not want to take place.

Now, we come to the problem of our dog being off leash.  We can train and train and train to make sure they will never leave our side under every scenario we can imagine.  We can use extreme attention devices to get their focus.  All of these things are, by definition, things we have anticipated.

What happens when an unanticipated scenario takes place?  These scenarios are normally characterized by loud noises, unusual movements, and strange objects causing a large spike in our dog’s adrenaline and outward focus.  They often are triggers for instantaneous “fight or flight” scenarios.

Our experience has sadly shown that it is nearly impossible to control your off-leash dog under these extreme and unforeseen scenarios.  Robin and I would like to review this further and even give you some alternate plans for mitigation.  Please check out our training blog article titled “Should My Dog Be Outside Without a Leash”.

Off Leash

Feeding your dog Life’s Abundance Premium Dog Food is a great step in the right direction of providing him with the bond and safety he craves and needs.  In addition, obedience and behavior training is very important in assuring that you have a great dog for life and the proper companion for the entire family.

We would like to share some of the articles we have written over the years and continue to write regarding dog safety, obedience, and behavior.  We hope you enjoy them.

How Can I Avoid Dog Bites?

There probably aren’t a lot of us who have been bitten by dogs.  I am pretty sure that most of us have been afraid that a dog was going to bite us.  We felt afraid and did not have any control of the situation or what would happen next.  Most of the time, we didn’t get bitten or nipped.  We were really happy with the outcome, but confused why it went so well.

When it comes to dog bites, it is often about what you don’t do as opposed to what you do.  We often hear the term “running away from the problem” and that is what we sometimes to when faced with an unknown and potentially dangerous situation.  Is that the right thing?

On the other hand, we are told not to move when confronted with an unknown and dangerous situation.  If we don’t move, maybe we will “become invisible”.  Is that the right thing?

We often focus on “the right thing” as it relates to humans.  The problem we should address is “the right thing” when it comes to dogs.  They communicate differently that we communicate.  When we are trying to say “I mean you no harm”, they may interpret our communication as “bring it on!”.

So, to answer the original question… Yes, you can definitely avoid dog bites.  The important point you must always remember is that you must communicate your passive intentions in a way that the dog understands.  The appropriate method is often counter intuitive to everything we have been taught in the past. When you stay true to communicating as a canine, you will keep your fingers and toes.

Robin and I have a great dog training article that explains all of this by walking you through the two most common “dog bite” scenarios.  I can testify that they have worked for me.  Please take a look at our training article titled “How Can I Avoid Dog Bites”.

Avoid Dog Bites

What Toys Are Bad for My Dog or Puppy?

Most parents would never give their young children toys with sharp points that could stab or poke.  They would never give their kids blunt toys that could hit and hurt.  Although they could have been “a lot of fun for the kids”, they would probably be used to harm siblings and possibly parents.

And, as kids, how many of us have heard “Don’t rough house in the living room! Go outside and play!”. Again, our parents were trying to establish behaviors and boundaries that were appropriate for a safe and properly run family.

Wow! Now that I think about it, there were a lot of things our parents had to worry about and manage with our toys and our actions. Although, at the moment, what we were playing with or how we were playing were not that important, the long-term implications were important.  They didn’t want us to destroy the furniture and knock all the pictures off the wall.  They didn’t want us to think that it was OK to stab people and beat them over the heads.

Now let’s turn our attention from our parent’s decision about our toys to our decision with our dog’s toys.  We give our dog toys because we love him and want to make him happy and have fun.  We use toys when we play with our dog.

So, why does our dog start to become dominant and stop listening to us when we give him toys?  Is it the toy?  Is it how we play with him?  Are toys just a bad thing to give to our dog? Robin and I have a great article that explains what is happening and what you should do. Please check out our dog training article titled “What Toys Are Bad for My Dog or Puppy”.

Dog Toys

Can I Play with My Dog Outside in the Summer Heat?

There is an old saying, “Mad dogs and Englishmen to out in the midday sun”.  This is actually part of the lyrics of a song written in the 1930’s.  Although I always talk about dogs of the canine variety, this phrase references “Mad Dogs” as a slang that means someone who is wild and crazy.

So, when I see someone out in the middle of a hot summer day taking their dog for a long walk or playing fetch with them in the park, I definitely see one “canine” dog and one “mad dog”. Please don’t get me wrong, there are times where you may have to take your dog out in the middle of a summer day for some exercise, potty time, etc.  Our responsibility as dog owners is not to be “mad dogs”, but responsible dog owners.  What does this mean?

Well, the biggest thing that we can remember is if we are outside and we feel hot, our dog will feel really hot.  Unfortunately, they can’t tell us that “It is just too darn hot out here!  I want my air conditioning!  By the way, where is the lemonade?”

Because our dogs may have been cooped up all morning, they may be extremely excited just to be out and play.  They may not feel the high temperature because of their adrenalized state.  This can lead to heat exhaustion and even worse.

We must be acutely aware of the temperature and activities we are performing with our dog while out in the summer heat.  By monitoring our activities and the physical environment while outside, we can keep our dogs safe while still allowing them their external play time.  Robin and I have a great article that will provide you with the steps you need to take to have a safe play time with your dog outside this summer.  Please take a look at our dog training article titled “Can I Play with My Dog Outside in the Summer Heat”.

Play with your dog in the summer heat

How Do I Get My Dog to Like His Dog House?

All dogs need places that they can consider safe and secure.  These places are normally consistent, well defined, and often include some sort of containment.  Some of the obvious ones are under the bed, at a corner of a room, on the far sofa, or a dog bed by the fireplace.  There are obviously many others, these are just examples that come to mind.

The one common thread between all these locations is that your dog has picked these locations.  You may think that they were your idea, but that is not the case.  Yes, you may have fed him by the fireplace or bonded through playtime by the sofa, but that did not create a safe place.  They were simply actions that you performed that associated a place as safe.  Your dog was the final decision maker concerning the appropriate real estate.

So, let’s talk about dog houses for a moment.  Dog Houses are the “classic place” we get for our dog to hang out in the back yard.  We believe that they will naturally love them because, if we have houses, they should have houses too.  I am not sure where that is written down, but it isn’t.

A dog house is just “another place” around our home.  It may be inviting to our dog because it is enclosed from the elements and he is the only one that goes inside, but it does not naturally say “Home”.

Remember how our dog loves to be under the bed, on the sofa, etc.?  Those are safe places for him.  We need to have him associate the (his) dog house as a safe place as well.  Remember how we may feed our dog in a place they feel safe or play with them in their happy spot?

We need to socialize and educate our dog that the dog house is also a happy spot and safe place for them.  There are multiple steps that we need to perform to make this take place.  Robin and I have a great dog training article that will quickly transform the dog house that you brought home from the pet store into your dog’s happy and safe place.  Please check out our article titled “How Do I Get My Dog to Like His Dog House?”

Dog House

What’s the Difference Between a Dog Bite and Dog Nip?

At the “fifty-thousand-foot level”, a dog bite and a dog nip may appear the same.  They both occur when a dog puts his mouth on our skin and leaves a puncture.  This puncture may be very, very small and may be nothing more than a scratch, but we still often say “That dog bit me!”

Words are just words.  The problem is how we deal with our interpretation of the words and the consequences that follow.

Both dog bites and dog nips can hurt and be very scary at the time.  The big difference that we often overlook is that a dog bite is normally more severe than a dog nip.  To put it into perspective, a nip often only requires a little antiseptic and a band aid.  A dog bite often requires a trip to the twenty-four-hour urgent care and some stitches.

So, the bite or nip happens.  What comes next?  Normally you will become very mad and aggressively punish your dog.  You feel that this is the right thing to do because you “really want to let the dog know he did a bad thing” and you “often feel better after doing it”.

Does this solve anything?  Probably not.  The key factor you are missing is to understand why your dog acted the way that he did?  Was it because he was scared or is he truly aggressive and vicious? The answer to this question will determine your dog’s true nature and the reason for his action.

It could be possible that, even though your dog bit a person, it was not his fault at all.  He may have been reacting to a perceived inappropriate action by the person.  Robin and I have a wonderful article that will put all of this into perspective. Please read our dog training blog titled “What’s the Difference Between a Dog Bite and Nip”

Dog Nip

Should My Dog Be Outside Without a Leash?

Let’s just get to it and answer this question right away.  Robin and I never condone having a dog off leash when you and your dog are outside and in a non-contained area.  But “You aren’t you dog trainers?” you ask. “Can’t you train a dog to always stay by their owner’s side or always come to them when called?”

In “the real world”, everything is based on probability.  What is the probability that something will happen?  What is the possibility of a future result?  Except for the answer to the question “What is 1+1?”, everything is based on “I think that…; I believe…; I am positive…; I am really, really sure that…”. These all leave the possibility of something unplanned happening.

The more we prepare and educate, the better we may be prepared and the better the odds of achieving the result we want.  But the bottom line is that there is always the possibility for something that we do not want to take place.

Now, we come to the problem of our dog being off leash.  We can train and train and train to make sure they will never leave our side under every scenario we can imagine.  We can use extreme attention devices to get their focus.  All of these things are, by definition, things we have anticipated.

What happens when an unanticipated scenario takes place?  These scenarios are normally characterized by loud noises, unusual movements, and strange objects causing a large spike in our dog’s adrenaline and outward focus.  They often are triggers for instantaneous “fight or flight” scenarios.

Our experience has sadly shown that it is nearly impossible to control your off-leash dog under these extreme and unforeseen scenarios.  Robin and I would like to review this further and even give you some alternate plans for mitigation.  Please check out our training blog article titled “Should My Dog Be Outside Without a Leash”.

Off Leash