Don’t Pee There! Training Made Simple

So you went to the shelter and got a puppy but are lost about getting them to understand the rules of the house and where to pee. The first rule of training a dog is no punishment. Don’t ever punish a dog or spank them. It will only make the problem worse and if you hit a dog for using the potty, you should not be a pet owner in the first place.

 

The right way involves rewarding positive behavior and doing the right thing. Puppies cannot hold it like an adult dog can and have to be taken out several times a day. Not just three times like an older dog. Puppies normally can hold it for the same amount of months old they are. So for a 2 month old puppy, that would be 2 hours and so on up to that 6 month mark. Even adult dogs normally need to go out every 5 hours or so depending on the breed. Larger dogs can go around 8 hours at a time.

 

Feed your dog or puppy on a schedule so their bowels and bladder will get on the schedule too. No table feeding and only dog food that is high quality so you are not going to be dealing with upset stomachs. Praise your dog with only appropriate treats for them. So put the cheetos and leftover chicken away. That is not the kind of treat that does a dog stomach good

 

Pick out a spot outside to take your dog on a leash too. They like having a designated bathroom area as well. Some dogs prefer a tree or bush as well to go up against. Make sure and pick up after them every once in awhile so it is healthy for them to use over and over. Every time that they use the bathroom in this area, give them a treat and play with them for a little bit to show them that you are proud of them. Dogs want to please their owners. Use this in your favor and never hurt that relationship by punishing them. They don’t learn from punishment and it will not make them want to please you anymore.

 

Remember to not punish accidents, keep them on a fair schedule, and only feed them good treats as a reward for going where they are supposed to. You will have the most success this way of training your dog. It is not an overnight process so keep in mind that it may take several weeks to train a puppy or dog. Keeping puppies behind baby gates with puppy pads that are scented for them to find them is a good idea in the very beginning of training, but be consistent with the training and reward them for going outside like a big dog!

What does your cat really want to say?

 

Body language of any animal can be a sign of love, affection, hunger, and other meanings that are sometimes overlooked. You can really see this behavior in cats as well as other pets. Cats seem to have a set of the basic reactions and body language that will help you understand them and have a better relationship with them if you pay attention.

 

Have you ever seen someone or do you know your cats meow language and what they are saying after a few years? Studies have shown that cats actually have a set of vocals that are used to say certain things. I want out, I’m hungry, and pet me are a few of the common commands. Some will even fuss at their owners if they are gone all day and have a meow for that as well. They are smarter than we give them credit for. Most cat owners can replicate their particular cat's meow that says hello or come here. They also can guess at what their kitty is wanting based on the meow.

 

Watch that tail because it could be saying something. Cat behavior specialists have a set of basic tail indications of how your cat is feeling and what they are communicating.

 

Down - maybe they are afraid or scared.

Up - that carefree kitten feeling.

Moving around back and forth - get away because that cat is aggravated with something and may be ready to attack.

Slowly moving around - they might not have decided on how they are feeling over something. This is a confused move. You will see this if they are unsure of a new toy but really want to get it.

Fur standing out - they are threatened and this is normally accompanied by the sideways walk and hissing. This is a defense move to make as much noise and be as big as possible. Tail furr out will only happen if they are truly scared over something.

Ears are another way they talk to us and you tell what is going on in their heads a little better by watching out for these signals.

 

Turned ahead - that fussy kitten attitude.

Turned up to the sky - Listening for something and maybe going hunting.

Turned backwards - Attack mode activated.

Flat against head - Ready for a fight. Cats will hold them down to as a reflex to fighting so the other cats or animals don’t bite their ears so if a cat does this, those are fighting reflexes. 

Cat eyes are always magnetic to look at but they are also talking to you with them as well. These special little creatures have amazingly beautiful and powerful eyes that should never be ignored.

 

Big black eyes - stimulated or they got into the catnip again.

Small black eyes - irritated with something or someone.

Staring at you - they are wanting to play or attack you. Either is play for them.

Blinking - this is a sign of love. Ever been falling asleep and your cat is doing the same but blinks .to make sure you are closing your eyes like a game. That is a sign of love.

Eyes almost shut - this is a trust signal.

 

So pay attention to your little friend. You might learn a lot from them or about them just by watching these signals. Eyes, tails, and ears are their main body signal points.

A Cat and a Dog - How to make it work

 

There is a common misconception that dogs and cats will never get along. While some of them might argue and not be a good fit to be in the same home, some of them do well together. It all depends on the temperament of that cat or dog as well as how early they are exposed to one another. The breed of dog will play a major role in this. Golden Retrievers, Pointers, Pits, and Bulls may not do well because they are bred for hunting. 

Never introduce an almost feral cat into a household with dogs. It may bring out the wild side of the dog if they are being too defensive to hisses and growls. Having a cat outside with a dog in the yard is another problem too. Outside cats in the yard will be seen as prey and not given the same amount of control from the dog as inside cats do. So if you do mix the two make sure to keep the cat inside.

 Controlling the environment is the best way to go about introducing them. The new cat may have to spend a few nights in a bathroom and you can have someone let the dog in on a leash so they can be controlled if they have a bad reaction. Keeping them separated by a door is a safe way for them to get used to each other. Slowly introducing them over the course of a few days to weeks if needed will be the best way to show your dog that the new cat is a friend and vice versa. Cats and dogs are smart. You will be able to know what progress they are making by their behavior.

 

I have actually introduced a fully feral cat into the house before and that was done the exact same way successfully. While she was getting used to the house, the dog was getting used to her, however, there was another cat in the house that the dog already was used to and knew the rules. She was raised from a puppy with cats so it is a little better that way. If at all possible, if you plan on having both in the home, get the cat first and then a puppy. The cats will train them to listen to them and maybe even open a door or cabinet for them. Puppies can be a little rambunctious and cats sleep around 18 hours a day, so make sure that your cat has a way out or a place to hide if they don’t want to be bothered.

Baby gates can also be a good territory barrier for safe integration. Own your home or have an awesome landlord? Some people cut kitty doors into pantries and closets to keep food, litter, and a good hiding place accessible to the cat and away from the dog. Separating their food and keep the litter away from the dog is needed. These things need to be planned out in advance. If your home does not offer hiding places for kitty and separation of food than it might not be a good idea to have a cat and a dog together in the same home.

 

 As for everything else past training, conditioning, and feeding, the combination can be rewarding if the chemistry is there. You do not know what the dog or cat may do before they are together. Some animals react differently to the same breed of animal but a different one so you never know. Just because your dog gets along with the neighbors cat does not mean they will with one in their home. Make sure and introduce slowly.

Raising Children around Pets is Better

Being a kid is not always easy. Studies have found that petting an animal relieves stress in children. If they are sad or angry, they can cuddle or spend time with an animal and they can really turn to them for support. Pets and kids normally form bonds very quickly. It has also been medically proven to boost their immune systems as well.

Pets give the family a centered sense of togetherness in that everyone loves the dog or cat and enjoys them. Cats and dogs can play and do things with the family that can be a great entertainment source. They can also teach the children about interacting with animals. People that grow up without pets are less likely to understand and relate to others that have them as adults. Even worse would be to develop a fear of animals as adults because they never had pets as children.

Pets such as cats, dogs, or even smaller animals encourage activity in children. The pets get them playing and moving around. Dogs and cats that can run around and play with them are giving them exercise and helping them get out all of that extra energy that they have as children. It can be very good for them physically and mentally as they develop. Kids with dogs especially tend to get outside more and run around with them for playtime.

Learning responsibility is a big lesson for children with pets. They learn that they need to care for the animals and even little kids can do things like play with them or fill a water bowl up. Small caring acts will help develop them into caring children with a sense of self-worth and responsibility.

Parents should not depend on dogs as babysitters but they have been known to save or sometimes think they are saving children from danger. Both cats and dogs demonstrate an uncanny ability to protect the children that love them. It is a bond that is strong among them. These relationships are good for children to connect with animals and have respect for them as well.

Animals can give children confidence. A shy child will normally gain self-confidence when they see their cat or dog greeting a guest, they might do the same. Even during playtime, pets are teaching the children lessons on acting on their feelings or expressing themselves. Animals do these things naturally and children will gain a sense of self as well from watching their pets personalities come out.

Respect for living creatures is the most important lesson that children learn from having pets. They learn to care for and respect that their pet has feelings and needs as well just like they do. It can help them to connect to another being and really feel as if they are connecting to the animals world.