Cortnie with Sit Means Sit Austin had a strong one on her hands with Bodie, the pit bull mix. He has tons of energy, wants to go everywhere fast and has no desire to listen. But after an immersion board and train with Cortnie he learned how to be the best mannered little man!
Krystal with Sit Means Sit San Antonio spent 2 weeks with Karly in our board and train immersion program. Krystal taught Karly how to behave around other dogs, how to control her energy, walk well on a leash, but still stay goofy and happy at the same time!
Ever wonder how a dog spends his day during a board and train? Danielle with Sit Means Sit Austin had a yellow lab, Gracie, for our immersion board and train program and she documented what happens in the day in the life of a board and train! There is a lot of training going on, sit, place, leash walking, off leash stuff but also a lot of fun happens as well!
Growing up in a little west Texas town, out in the country, we had all types of animals, from horses and goats to gerbils and birds. I learned early on the companionship our pets can give and have remained an animal lover in to adulthood, currently owning two dogs, a cat, a gecko and some fish. But, we always had at least two dogs, and for some reason, I always seemed to have the special relationship with them.
Throughout my childhood, my mom bred and raised Golden Retrievers. I remember each time, when the puppies came, helping her care not only for our mommy dogs, but also the litters of 8-12 pups at a time! I remember staying up late nights, preparing meals, nursing puppies, cleaning up after them, helping potty train them, meeting with the vet to vaccinate them, and so forth. Even in my young age, I knew owning a dog was a major responsibility. I can only remember 9 months of my life when I did not have a dog, and I swear that was only because I wasn’t allowed to while living in student housing during college! Even still, I would “borrow” my cousin’s Shih-tzu to take to the park and on walks weekly. I couldn’t bear to not have a canine companion.
Troy Pfeifer with Sit Means Sit gave us helpful tips on how to avoid getting bitten by a dog, and how you can protect yourself when a dog attacks. When approaching a dog, you should hold out a fist rather than an open hand. If the dog does bite, this will cause much less pain and probably a less severe bite. Approach new dogs like you would a stranger. Hugs and kisses and too much movement can startle a dog right off the bat, so give them a gentle pet on their side to begin with and let it get a feel for you. If you’re nervous about being attacked, become a tree. Be as still as possible and the dog will calm down. If you’re about to be attacked, hold something like a backpack, purse, jacket, etc. between your body and the dog. The dog will focus on the object rather than you. Troy also spoke a little about how to tell differences between a happy dog and one that’s stressed out. Happy dogs will have ears up and a loose wagging tail while stressed or upset dogs may growl, have a closed mouth, ears back, or even lick their snout. If you stop by Sit Means Sit, they offer classes that can teach you more in depth the things he taught us today.Visit Sit Means Sit online or call (512) 348-RUFF  for a free consultation. with Sit Means Sit gave us helpful tips on how to avoid getting bitten by a dog, and how you can protect yourself when a dog attacks. When approaching a dog, you should hold out a fist rather than an open hand. If the dog does bite, this will cause much less pain and probably a less severe bite. Approach new dogs like you would a stranger. Hugs and kisses and too much movement can startle a dog right off the bat, so give them a gentle pet on their side to begin with and let it get a feel for you. If you’re nervous about being attacked, become a tree. Be as still as possible and the dog will calm down. If you’re about to be attacked, hold something like a backpack, purse, jacket, etc. between your body and the dog. The dog will focus on the object rather than you. Troy also spoke a little about how to tell differences between a happy dog and one that’s stressed out. Happy dogs will have ears up and a loose wagging tail while stressed or upset dogs may growl, have a closed mouth, ears back, or even lick their snout. If you stop by Sit Means Sit, they offer classes that can teach you more in depth the things he taught us today.Visit Sit Means Sit online or call (512) 348-RUFF  for a free consultation.
You enjoy the company of your well-trained dog. But where should you go? In fact, there are numerous dog-friendly places in both San Antonio and Austin that are just begging to be explored! Here are our favorites:
1. Annual Schlotzsky’s Bun Run 5K – Austin
This family-friendly event takes place toward the end of September at the corner of Alterra Parkway and Kramer Lane (off Burnett Road) in Austin. It is designed for runners as well as children. But Schlotzsky’s takes it a step further. The organizer also welcomes pets. In fact, speedy dogs have the opportunity to win the title of “Fastest Dog in Austin!” If you cannot make it to this particular run, note that there are a lot of local 5K events that welcome well-behaved dogs alongside their human companion runners.
2. Tom Slick Dog Park - San Antonio
Located at 7400 Highway 151 in San Antonio, this is not your average dog park. Instead it is a one-acre facility that features separate off-leash areas for small and large dogs. There are benches, picnic tables and even a doggie shower to help the canines cool off after playtime.
3. Hike around Comanche Lookout Park - San Antonio
Head over to 15551 Nacogdoches in San Antonio for the opportunity to take a 4.55-mile hike with your four-legged friend. There are plenty of like-minded dog lovers who bring out their pets as well. Well-behaved dogs have a wide variety of opportunities for socializing – as do their owners.
4. Sisters Grimm Ghost Walk - San Antonio
Start at 300 Alamo Plaza and walk through one of the world’s oldest cities and hear tales no soul dares to tell! Tours are available Monday through Saturday and begin at 8:30. Cameras are recommended! Adult tickets are $15 and children (7-15) are $10. Don’t forget your walking shoes! Tour operators welcome the opportunity to share this walk with leashed dogs that are behaved around adults, children and other dogs.
5. Doga! – Austin
Would you like to do yoga with your dog? Austin’s Nicole Vykoukal makes it possible. The goal is for dog lovers to become healthier and for dogs and their humans to deepen their bonds. Join a group session or book a one-on-one class with the instructor. (If your dog has not yet gone through our obedience training, it may be best to opt for the one-on-one for right now.)
There are many more dog-friendly places in Austin as well as great places to take your dog in San Antonio. Please remember, all of these activities will only be pleasurable for both you and your canine companion if it is trained to follow at least basic commands and also behaves well around other people and dogs. If you are unsure whether your dog has the right training or temperament for these activities, talk to our friendly dog training experts.
We gladly evaluate your dog and ensure that you have a happy and confident animal that will do well at whatever event you intend to visit. Conversely, if your dog needs a bit more training or just some reinforcement, we can help you get the animal ready for the fun adventures that you are looking forward to having together.
We also invite you to check out our Calendar of Events. If you’re interested in any of these venues to have a great time with your pups, click on the images for links to each location!
The lure of supplementing your dog’s chow with fruits and vegetables from your table is strong. After all, these foods are considered healthy for human consumption, so why not also for your dog? In the alternative, you are serious about feeding your dog a nutritious chow that is formulated for its dietary needs. Yet you have noticed that he has been getting into your pantry. Should you move some of the groceries?
List of Foods That Are Bad for Your Dog
In fact, there is a list of inappropriate and dangerous foods that Doctors Foster and Smith have put together. Examples include:
- Caffeine. Whether it is in your chocolate stash, your coffee grounds or the tea leaves, caffeine has proven to have a toxic effect on the canine’s nervous system as well as on the heart.
- Cat food. If you are feeding your pets together, it is not unusual for the dog to also gobble up the cat’s food. The problem here is that food for feline consumption is usually formulated with elevated levels of protein and fat. This will lead to obesity in dogs. Separate the food bowls and do not give cat food to your dog in a pinch when you run out of regular chow.
- Raisins. It may be funny to watch your dog catch a raisin out of the air, but consider that grapes and raisins contain a toxin that adversely affects the pet’s kidneys.
- Onions. Famous for containing sulfoxides, onions have been connected to anemia in dogs as well as cats. Extremely light-colored gums are a sign of possible anemia.
- Rawhide. Dog’s Best Life Magazine warns that rawhide is a common culprit in cases of digestive tract obstructions. In many of these cases, speedy veterinary care is of the utmost importance to avoid death.
It is imperative to bar access to any of these foods.
What’s the Best Dog Food?
So, what should you feed your dog? The ideal chow is natural and does not contain any of the fillers that are so common in grocery store dog food. The protein should be of the highest quality, which means that your dog absorbs more of the nutrients. As a result, you will be able to feed less than you have been accustomed to when using store-bought chow. Therefore, you actually save money when switching to high-quality food.
We recommend Life’s Abundance. The standard all-life-stage dry dog food contains 26 percent of crude protein and 16 percent of fat. Fiber is present to the tune of 3.5 percent. If the pet requires a weight loss formula, choose the specially formulated diet mix. With 28.5 percent of protein but only 11.5 percent of fat, the dog receives the necessary nutrients but without a lot of the fat. This will assist your companion canine with weight loss. Of course, a second part of this equation is regular exercise for the pet, play time and also off-leash run time at a dog park.
The latter is only possible when your dog is properly trained. If you are worried about your pet’s behavior toward other dogs or their owners, contact Sit Means Sit for our popular Lunch and Learn program. We work with businesses that would like to see a demonstration of what proper training could achieve in the average dog. We even bring pizza for lunch or bagels for breakfast! So, do not feed your dog inappropriate foods. Eliminate opportunities for the pet to sneak into your trash or pantry. Exercise it more, and ensure that its behavior is up to par for a visit to the dog park.
Image credits: WebMD
Cortnie with Sit Means Sit Austin had a fun week teaching Suki, the yellow lab that Suki needed to slow down instead of pulling everywhere to get places. She is a much calmer, happier dog with training!
The Canine Good Citizen (CGC) program was actually started in 1989 by the American Kennel Club (AKC). The goal is to train a dog in the kinds of behaviors that make it a well-mannered asset to any home and community. Yet it is more than that. The CGC program also enlists the animal’s caretaker in the process of enabling the pet to respond in the desired ways. Thus, the program is really about the successful collaboration between dog and human.
CGC Test Basics
Participation in the program is open to properly vaccinated dogs of all breeds, which includes mixed breeds. The AKC is very clear in stating that it is never too late for a dog to become a good citizen. After undergoing the training program associated with the test, a dog should be able to behave politely when greeting a friendly stranger, walking in a crowded room or interacting with other dogs. Basic commands are followed. The dog allows itself to be touched for grooming. Walking on a loose leash is achieved with basic voice commands. The dog is confident and will behave appropriately even if its primary caretaker is not present.
Sit Means Sit Dog Training advocates CGC testing. We believe that a well-behaved dog is a happy pet. We do offer preparatory classes that help you to get your animal ready for the actual testing. After your dog passes the test, you have a number of options that allow you to take your – and dog’s – experiences further. For example, an AKC Good Canine Citizen is permitted to participate in the AKC Therapy Dog program. This type of pet works with its caregiver to bring comfort to patients in a variety of therapeutic settings. This includes hospitals and nursing homes. The dogs are also welcomed in the schools that are currently trying out new reading programs, which allow children to read out loud to therapy dogs. This has shown immense promise in heightening the reading abilities of challenged students.
More Options After the Test
Of course, there are also other options open to you and your pet after successfully passing the CGC test. For example, you may choose to train for (and participate in) agility and tracking events as well as performance events. If you have ever dreamed of competing in an AKC event but have discovered that your pet is not registered with the organization, there is now a chance! To give these dogs – and their owners – another chance, the organization has devised the Purebred Alternative Listing program. An animal of a registerable breed that has passed the CGC test may be eligible to participate.
As you can see, training for and passing the CGC test opens a myriad of doors that have the power to change your life and that of your companion animal. Talk to our friendly dog training specialists today to get more information on the training, the preparatory classes or the test. Remember: No dog is too old to get started! Who knows, this might be the year that you and your dog will brave this challenge and discover some new hobbies or volunteer opportunities in the process.
Image Credits: Andrea Arden / carterse
If you whistle for your pet and he doesn’t respond, he might simply choose not to answer, he might be distracted by something even more interesting – or he might not be able to hear you. Deafness afflicts dogs and humans alike, and it can pose some special risks and dangers for your animal. Let’s look at how you might be able to help prevent the condition, or failing that, how to communicate better with your hearing-impaired friend.
What Causes Deafness?
A variety of things can cause deafness in dogs. Genetics may cause some animals — notably often all-white dogs with pink noses — to be born deaf. Hearing loss can also occur later in life, either suddenly or gradually. An infection or injury that damages the eardrum, for instance, might bring on deafness. Or your pet might lose his hearing through age-related degeneration of the parts of the ear that convey sound to the brain. Annual wellness checks are one way you can make sure infections, such as those caused by ear mites, get detected and treated early. Your vet might even find that the deafness was caused by nothing more than wax buildup. If you notice your dogs ears stink, it might be a yeast infection and if left untreated can cause hearing loss.
Even if your dog’s deafness is not preventable, you can still relate to him and even train him. Dogs are amazingly adaptable. If they are born deaf they don’t know that they cannot hear. If they go deaf, they will adapt and so should you! Hand signals are always a viable option; you can also use a laser pointer to get your message across. Ecollars (electronic collars), when used correctly, can also be extremely helpful for getting your pet’s attention without hurting him. Used at low levels, they make excellent tools for issuing recognized commands, teaching new commands, and warning your pet away from potential dangers. If you’d like more advice on training and communicating with your deaf dog, don’t hesitate to contact your friends as Sit Means Sit!