Tag Archives: potty training

Potty Training In The Rain

Southern California doesn’t get a whole lot of rain. When we do get rain a lot of our dogs don’t like it much. The dog that is staying with me for a homestay board and train program is one of those dogs.

Sometimes the weather can make potty training more difficult.
It seems she doesn’t mind going out in the rain for fun, but she does not like going potty when it’s wet. Her finicky potty behavior means I need to spend a lot more time watching her when it’s wet outside. This is another case of behavior management. If I don’t have any other commitments or if I can reschedule other commitments I’ll wait for her to go. Along with waiting I’ll also offer a little encouragement such as exercise or play and more frequent visits to her potty spot.

If I have other commitments I can’t work around I’ll take this particular dog out for a walk. She will always go on a walk. While the walk is not teaching her to go in the target potty area it is not as much of a setback as an accident in the house.

My Favorite Dog Training Rain Coat
My Favorite Dog Training Rain Coat

The recent rain has been very light. When it’s raining, shall I say, like cats and dogs, it’s best to be prepared before you head out the door. During moderate to heavy rain I will have a rain coat by the door along with my hat.

My hat is always by the door. If you know me you’ll know I think a hat is essential equipment. There are several low overhangs in the yard and it seems if I forget to wear my hat I always hit my head on one of those. Even in a light rain a hat is mighty handy for keeping the mega water drops coming off the trees from running down your neck.

Other helpful rain gear includes rubber boots or rain shoes and an umbrella. I find an umbrella gets in the way of handling the dog so I don’t use one. But for dogs that take a very long time they may have a purpose.

That is gear for getting out into the rain, but how about coming back inside? I recommend at least having a rug or towel down for the dog to step on as it comes in the door. Some people like having a towel by the door to dry the dog as well. It’s better to take a few minutes to dry the dog as opposed to having the dog shake dog smell water on the walls and furniture.

The take away is think about what you will need before you need it. Plan ahead and get everything ready so you’ll have all of your training supplies and equipment ready at the right time.

Wishing you the best in dogs and the best in life,
Andrew Ledford
So Cal Dog training


Getting a New Dog

Are you getting a new dog this year? If so you may want to know more about new dog syndrome. Understanding New dog syndrome can help us and our dogs deal more effectively with the stress of bringing a new dog into the household.

Getting New Dog? Training can make transitioning into a new home easier on people and the dog. This is true for rescue dogs and dogs from breeders.
Getting New Dog? Training can make transitioning into a new home easier on people and the dog. This is true for rescue dogs and dogs from breeders.

I work with many people who tell me how good their dog was when they first got it. By the time people call me in for dog behavior help the dog is proving to be quite disruptive. I hear how the cute little fur baby was perfect. It was quiet and docile when first entering the home. Then a week or so later it was a little monster. Although a cute little monster.

There are some dog behavior problems associated with new dog syndrome I hear about more than others.

One of these problems is that the dog who was just an angle is now getting into everything. It seems that it went from never chewing to chewing anything it can get its mouth on.

Another common problem is the dog that was supposed to be house trained when is first came into the new home. However, now it only potties where it should not go and when no one is looking. I have seen two scenarios with this problem. The first is the dog that developed house training problems when coming into the new home straight away. The second is the dog that seemed to be doing fine with potty training in the beginning and then for some mysterious reason starts having potty problems.

Dog communicating with vocalization combined with body language that can be seen as positioning and movement
Dog communicating with vocalization combined with body language that can be seen as positioning and movement

Barking is another common problem for dogs that suffered from new dog syndrome. The dog was quiet when it first came into the home and now it barks at everything. This is quite common since many dogs with new dog syndrome are sensitive and sensitive dogs tend to bark more.

A problem that can go along with all the above is extremely active behavior. Overall hyperactive behavior should not be confused with the temporary overactive behavior puppies display in the early evening and sometime in the mornings too. You may also see this temporary overactive behavior in puppies when they’re tired and when under a little stress. The stress can be as simple as frustration when learning a new behavior during food reinforcement training.

With over active behavior we often see the same pattern where the dog was very calm when it first came into the home only to become unruly once it settles in. It seems any stimulation at all makes this kind of dog hyperactive. The extra active behavior leads to all kinds of problems including jumping, chewing, potty problems, digging, and barking among others.

Getting a new dog or puppy? Learn about the transition period and how training can make rehoming an easy and enjoyable experience.
Getting a new dog or puppy? Learn about the transition period and how training can make rehoming an easy and enjoyable experience.

To prevent and overcome these problems requires the proper behavior management.  Early intervention is best, but not always possible. You can help your new dog through the transition period by being consistent and emotionally supportive. Dog training can be very helpful at all stages of the dog’s life. If you can start a training program soon after the dog arrives at its new home you may prevent many of the unwanted effects of new dog syndrome.

Some dogs have a tough time making the connections between the controlling signal and the desired response when under stress. In these situations we just need to be patient and use good behavior management. Sometimes being patient is part of providing an emotionally supportive environment.

Even if your dog has a hard time making the connection between the controlling signal and the behavior you can still use food to counter condition avoidance. When there is a strong avoidance response you will need to be more aware of the environment. I classify awareness as a component of one’s personal rules which make up a strategy for dog training.

If you need help with your dog you can call me at 714-827-4058

What can a seven (7) week old puppy learn?

reinforcement dog training
reinforcement dog training

From my dog training website I got the question where a reader wanted to know “What to train a dog at 7 weeks.” I am guessing they want to know what a puppy can learn when it is only seven weeks old. This is a great question because it’s during the formative early weeks that training has the biggest effect on future behavior. Most of the important social skills for living with humans are acquired during the early weeks.

The skills we can start teaching our puppies at seven weeks are socialization, potty training (house breaking). It’s particularly important that potty training is done correctly at an early age to prevent housebreaking problems. Other life skills a young puppy can learn are not to jump on people, proper play behavior, not to bite hard, and to come when called. I also like to begin very gentle leash conditioning sometime also called leash breaking. I generally don’t like using the word breaking for dog training, but it does have a long tradition in animal training.

In Home Puppy Training With a Corgi Pup
In Home Puppy Training With a Corgi Pup

Corgi Pup In Home Puppy Training Program

Even more advanced skill like tracking can be started at a very young age. When I used to have German Shepherd puppies I would try to start them in the beginning phase of tracking at around eight (8) weeks old.

While group training classes do have some advantages for socialization. However, a 7 or 8 week old puppy has not had the required vaccinations to be in a group class. Most of the important life skills are best taught with an in home puppy training program.

Personal Home Puppy Training, teaching a Labrador Retriever Pup To Like Sleeping In Its Crate.
Personal Home Puppy Training, teaching a Labrador Retriever Pup To Like Sleeping In Its Crate.

Call today and get started on puppy training program designed for you and you pup 714-827-4058

New 101 Dog Training Tips Web Pages

New tips pages added about housebreaking and another about selecting a dog training leash

Update to this page –
I have taken down the 101 Dog Training Tips Website and I am in the process of moving most of the important information to this site.

I am continuously adding new content to our network of websites. On 7/22/10 added a page about the dog training leash and how to select the right dog training leash for you. Since this post was first published I have moved the how to select the right dog training leash article to the OC Dog Training site.

On 8/3/10 I added a new housebreaking potty training article to the 101 dog training tips website. This is the first part of a housebreaking and potty training series and is being moved to this site.

On the OC Dog Training site I am no longer providing listings for other dog trainers like I did on the old 101 Dog Training Tips website. The dog trainers’ directory went with the old site.

Wishing you the best in dog training and in life,
Andrew Ledford.