Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Tips for stress reduction

1.  All training should be fun and completely hands off.  No physical manipulation
2. Eliminate the use of all equipment  and/or techniques that startle, scare,shockhurt or intimidate our dogs


3. Do not punish for undesirable behaviors. (no scolding, yelling, yanking,throwing cans, etc..).  Instead manage and/or teach an alternate behavior
4. Speak softly to the dog, to other pets, to other humans etc…
5. Reduce scary, strange, or annoying sounds as much as possible – TVs, radios, etc..
6. Don’t let the pet feel like he/she is on guard all the time. This means that the pet should be inside when pet parents are away so he/she doesn’t feel the need to bark at passersby. Also keep the pet away from windows if he/she feels the need to bark at people, dogs, squirrels, etc..
8. Don’t take your dog on errands unless it’s absolutely necessary or if the dog actually enjoys the outing
9. Teach loose leash walking because being on a tight leash can be stressful
10. Remove all pressure from the neck. Use a harness but use a martingale as a backup for safety
11. Avoid scary things as much as possible. i.e. do not walk your dog where kids are if he/she is afraid of kids. Do not let your dog meet other dogs if he/she does not like dogs.
12. Reduce visitors to the house.  Meet friends at their house or at another location.  If you have to have visitors, have them call so you can prepare by putting the dog away or let getting him/her far from the door.
13. Don’t walk in busy, populated areas. You might need to drive to a quiet park or go for walks during the wee hours of the morning or late at night. But be aware that loose dogs might be out at that time.
14. Ask your vet about non psychotropic calming aids. More details here
15. Research the food you are feeding.
Resources:
Dog Food Analysis
Dog Food Advisor
Dr Karen Becker
Michael W. Fox

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