Eye Contact Is Very Important When Training A Dog  

Posted by: Linda Mora Lee in , , , , , ,

When it comes to training a dog it is very important that your dog makes eye contact with you. Just like humans you know when someone is paying attention to what you are trying to say, by making eye contact with you, this is the same when it comes to dogs. If your dog is not looking at you when you are speaking to him/her then chances are good that they are not listening to you. This is important when training a dog you want something that tells you that the dog is truly listening to what you are trying to teach them.

Here is something that you can do to insure that your dog is making good eye contact with you and is ready to begin training.

First try and point to your eye and say watch me, if the dog does not even turn their head to look at you then you might want to try and reward them for this. Get a small treat that your dog likes and hold it between your thumb and index finger and draw a line for the dog’s nose up to your eyes and say watch me. Chance is good that the dog will look in the direction of the treat. Keep repeating this and even try and hold the treat up there for 10 seconds and then go longer because the longer the dog looks at you the better chance you have of holding their attention. Once it seems that the dog is getting the idea that when you say “watch me,” means to look at you, you can lose the treats and they will still focus on you because they know there will be a reward when they do.

The best thing that you can do for yourself while training is a dog is to be able to get their attention and hold it for long periods of time, this will keep your dog from wondering off and going into their own little world which can make it very hard for them to train.

Dogs Unwanted Behaviors  

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Max of course has a keen sense of smell and so anything that has a smell that he likes is something that he will find rewarding. To some these smells can be gross like the trash can or dirty socks, but to a dog that might be just a day in heaven. If you do not catch a dog doing these unwanted behaviors right away they will continue to do them as they think of this as a way to get a reward for free. Dogs do not put a label on a reward like humans do. Humans think that a reward for a dog is them being able to get a dog treat that they would not normally get, but this is not true for dogs.

The best thing you can do is catch them doing this unwanted act and stop it right there. Do not yell no at the dog, this will only scare him or her and they might continue this behavior just not when you are around. Instead try making a noise that you can use every time they are doing something that you do not want them to do. They will not become scared of you if you use a sound like shhh to show that you do not like what they are doing.

Once they leave the item alone then you can give them a different type of rewards and praise them for the behavior that you are looking for. You have to make sure to catch them in the act because it does no good to yell at them about something that they did in the past. They will not know what you are yelling at them for and might revert to hiding from you.

It is best to give praise for a job well done and so when they leave the item alone give them a better option than getting these unwanted rewards for themselves.

Loose Leash Walking With Max  

Posted by: Linda Mora Lee in , , , , , , ,

 I have to say on Wednesday I was not so sure that I could get Max to even walk on a loose leash, he was so used to darting off whenever he felt like it, but today I have to give him a great amount of credit. I was not so sure that I even knew what I was doing because I could not really even hear the instructor at the last training class and I guess she did not really care to show me because she was too busy attending to the other dogs that looked like they had been previously trained compared to my Jack Russell. So Last night I decided to go over the papers that she had given us about the training class and try and at least attempt what they had put down on paper. Here is what the paper states if someone would like to also teach their dogs to walk on a loose leash and not have to struggle with their dog to go on simple walk.

Guide To Loose Leash Walks

Have a few treats that your dog likes in your pocket or coat, somewhere you can easily get to them while on your walk.

Relax and hold the leash against your body. The leash should just be hanging at your side.

Give your dog a treat if they are being calm and paying attention to you.

Then you will say the dogs name and let’s go and start walking.

If the dog has tension in the leash then just stop were you are and do not move. Your walking is like a reward for the dog. So if you continue to move while he/she is pulling you then it is like saying this is ok.

Stand there until your dog returns to your side. Once your dog returns then you can continue walking and also give him a dog treat as a reward for coming back.

This will teach your do to stay next to your side if they want to go for a walk.

Also they suggested that you walk in a little faster pace because if you walk to slow with the dog this gives them too much time to get distracted by their surroundings.

Today I tried this method with Max and it really did work. He understood that if he walks to far away from me that I would stop and not move and he returned to my side right away. It was great because even though there were plenty of distractions like out cat Harley he just kept on moving. So if you have a dog that likes to take you on the walk I would suggest trying to use this method because it does really help. If I can get my energetic Jack Russell to follow at my side I am almost sure that any dog can learn this and have success.

Jack Russell’s And Cats Can Live In The Same House  

Posted by: Linda Mora Lee in , , , , , , , ,

When it comes to owning one of these feisty little creatures it is best to keep in mind that they are a hunting dog and that is what they were bred to do is cat rodents and foxes and you should not be surprised if your jack will chase your cat(s) around the house because this is only natural for them. You cannot try and teach or train this out of them because then you are taking away this dog’s job and therefore causing a flaw in the dog.

Jack Russell’s are kind and sweet with an energetic disposition. They need a job something to keep them busy and out of trouble, but if you choose to purchase a Jack Russell and have smaller pets inside the house you might get more trouble then you were asking for. These dogs cannot tell the difference between another household pet and prey they think that they are one and the same.

Some Jack Russell’s can be kept in a house with cats, but that does not mean that the cats will always be safe. They may act like they are friends, but it only takes being out of the house one time for the rough housing between the two animals to turn deadly. It is better if you have a Jack Russell and a cat to never ever leave them unsupervised alone even if they look like they get along. This is a common mistake that a lot of owners have they think that just because the Jack Russell is not chasing around the cat all day that it is fine for them to be in the house together and this is simple untrue. This is when the owner comes home to a dead cat and does not understand what happened and blames it on the dog. A Jack Russell likes to play, but they tend to play rough of at least that is my experience with Max. You cannot expect them to be gentle with something that is its enemy. So before getting this breed of dog you need to consider the other pets in the household and if you are going to be able to monitor them all throughout the day, if the answer is no then move on because this breed is not for you.

I have two cats Harley and Sadie and they live in the house with Max, but I do not ever let them alone with him because I know that something that is just play could turn deadly. Harley and Sadie are indoor/outdoor cats and so when I leave the home they go outside into the garage while Max stays in the house. Max was raised around these cats from the time he was a puppy, but I would still not trust that nothing could happen to them. The reason that I got Max even though I had cats was the breeder had told me that these dogs get along well with other animals and that includes cats. I now see that he did not do his research as well as I and I should have looked into it more, but I could not stand to get rid of Max just because of this fact and My husband would not allow the cats to be put into a adoption center and I really didn’t want that either, so we try and make the best out of the situation that we are in. It seems to have worked for the most part. The cats and dog are never ever left alone together and we have gates all over the house so that the cats have someplace to escape to. We also have never allowed Max to play rough with the cats. I can say that it takes more time on the owner’s part when you have other smaller animals in the house. This is the main reason I say to consider your time that you have in a day to monitor these animals.

It is best to keep the other pets in the household in mind before purchasing or adopting this breed of dog because you might be in for more trouble then you asked for.

Max Week 2 Beginner Training Classes  

Posted by: Linda Mora Lee in , , , , , , , , , ,

Last night was Max’s second night of training. He actually did better on walking around the store with me when he did not see any other dogs, but once the dogs began arriving he started barking all over again. He just kept going and going and would not do all the things that he has learned at home. He is doing great with the clicker training at home and he could sit and wait and all of the things that they were talking about last night, but he would not show it by looking at his behavior. I told one of the ladies there that he did not bark at home, well because he does not. He never makes a sound unless he hears something outside and she acted like she did not believe me. I could not blame her because of the way he was acting it was hard to believe it myself. There was another Jack Russell at the class as well last night and you could see that mine had never spent time around other dogs compared to that Jack Russell. It made me kind of sad to see the other dog being able to go around the other dogs without barking or snapping at them, but Max he was not having it. I am not sure but I think he was looking for some kind of attention from these actions because he would have never done this before. Like I had stated in another part of my blog he was around my mother’s dog and never did any of this.

He went on so long during the class with his barking that the trainer thought that it would be best to put a muzzle on him to calm him down and give the other dog owners a chance to hear what she was talking about. I do not like muzzles, but I thought it was in the best interest of everyone including Max. He had the muzzle on and I felt so sorry for him because he was crying the whole time, but I tried not to show it the best that I could because I did not want him to get a reaction out of me. He did start to sit once he got the muzzle on and he was listening to me a little more, but when we went for a walk around the store customers that were walking around looked at my dog like “he must be a biter.” It made me feel bad for Max because he does not bite at all, but there was nothing that I could do.

Loose Leash

Last night the thing that we were suppose to learn was how to get our dogs to walk on a loose leash. I thought that would never happen with Max. He was normally the one that was pulling me around by the leash. Last night there was a change in him though. She gave us each a section to walk down and told us to practice by ourselves on how to get our dogs to walk on a loose leash. When he was not around the other dogs he did this perfectly. I learned how to stop and let him loosen the leash himself before I started to walk with him again. The trainer even said that she saw great things from him when he was walking, but once he saw her dog, that she uses to train the other dogs he went crazy and stopped listening to me again and even found a way to start barking through the muzzle.

Needless to say I am feeling less and less confident about Max learning to be around other dogs, but we

Shall see. There are 6 more weeks of training and if he does not get along with the other dogs, then I will just feel like it was a waste of the money. Right now the only thing I can say is that I get the papers that explain what the training in tales for the night like a direction sheet, but that could have been given to me without having to find a babysitter and spend money on that and the training classes as well. I am hoping that he will come around so I can view what the trainer is showing us. Oh and because of Max’s constant barking I have no idea what we will be learning next week.

Jack Russell’s Can Live With Younger Children  

Posted by: Linda Mora Lee in , , , , , , ,

I want to point this out that this might not be for all children, but it is possible for you to own a Jack Russell and have children under the age of one in the household. It just takes a lot of training for your puppy and your child, but you can make it work.

Jack Russell’s are a dog that maybe tiny in size, but they do have very big hearts. When I got Max I was told by the previous owner that Max would get along with children and he even liked to play with their grandchildren, so I never thought that it would be an issue that I had 4 children in the home I just figured that they would have a new playmate. When getting home I thought that it would be good to do some research about the puppy that I just bought to find out their temperament and all that, something I have to admit I should have done before I even purchased him. I got to reading things online that said that you should never get a Jack Russell if you have children under the age of five in the household. This worried me because at the time I had an 11 month old and a 3 year old in the house. I was afraid that it was not going to work even though Max showed great affection towards my 11 month old when he entered the house. I was afraid that I would have to get rid of a dog that I just purchased because of this because I thought it could be something that I could not control in the dog. I found that I was wrong and that are something’s that I could do for Max and the younger children to be able to stay under one roof.

Max loved to sleep right next to my 11 month old and he would spend his time looking to see were the baby was. I think this was him bonding right away with my son and even today my son Travis is one and they are the best of friends. I started off right away teaching Max what the word down in our house was, which was basically not for him to jump up on anyone. Max learned this right away, and the reason for teaching him this at a young age was mainly because when Travis started to walk I did not want our dog jumping all over him and knocking him down. This is one thing that I noticed Jack Russell’s do to show who is boss in the house and I did not want him doing it to a young child, so I made sure to let him know that I was boss in the house and I would not let him get away with this. I also taught Max the word gentle, so that he would know that when he is doing something that if I said gentle he would calm down and be careful. I pretty much taught him this one when we would be playing around that if was biting down a little too hard for my liking that I would say gentle and he would ease up. This is something that he picked up quickly.

Now Max was not the only one that I had to train in this processes on trying to be able to keep a Jack Russell in my home with my children. I had to teach the children that this is a dog that does not like to be rough house with, that it is ok to pet him and play with him but never to pull on his tail or ears and never to tug on his fur. My kids are not high strung and they actually listened to me very well when I told them this. They would play catch with him and run outside, but they never were rough with him. This worked well and it helped the children to understand that he is still a playful dog you just have to be careful with him. I did not really let Max around Travis except when he wanted to lay down and go to sleep and I think this was a benefit to both Max and Travis. Travis is now one and I do let him go around Max, but I just tell him careful and he will slowly pet Max’s back. Travis also loves to give Max his toys and I think Max likes this as well, Max is not really protective his toys but because I have told him to be gentle when he is around Travis I say this a lot and he understands.

Needless to say it is possible for younger children to live with a Jack Russell, but you have to be vigilant on training this dog as well as the children. If you have children that already show signs that they like to rough house with animals then I would not suggest get a Jack Russell, but both child and dog can be trained.

Smarter Then They Look  

Posted by: Linda Mora Lee in , , , , , , , , , ,

Whoever thinks that a Jack Russell is not smart, they are wrong. My mom tried telling me that she did not think that Max was smart because he has some pink on the roof of his mouth. I laughed because she is always trying to compete with me, by saying that he dog is smarter. Max does some things that sometimes make him look as though he is not a smart dog like tearing up the trash or my shoes, but that is not a dumb dog it is a typical Jack Russell when they are bored and there are only a few things left for them to do.

He looks at me and cocks his head when I am talking to me and he also makes great eye contact and so I know he knows what I am saying to him and he is listening. Today though it was a funny moment of a dog trying to push his limits in the house but in at the same time use his intelligence. My husband and I do not let Max go into the bathroom because every time he is in there he tends to rip the toilet paper to shreds, and so we have taught him to sit outside the door and wait and he does a great job with this. Sometimes he will even take a nap by the door when I am in the bathtub. We today I was taking a bath and Max brought his fake duck dog toy and lay down. I told him to sit and wait, he did this and because I was taking a bath about 5 minutes into it he laid down. Then all of a sudden he kind of nudged the duck inside the doorway, but not so much that he could not reach it from where he was laying at. I just thought that he was done playing with it and he just did not want it anymore, then he pushed it a little farther in the doorway and moved towards it, this did not really mean to much to me at that moment and so I just let it be, but before I knew it he was nudging it all the way into the bathroom and then I figured out what he was doing. He thought that if he kept pushing the duck into the bathroom that I would not be upset with him for coming in to get it.

Needless to say Max outwitted me for a few seconds today