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  • Writer's picturecaissiecanineinstr

Caissie Canine Instruction: Keeping your K9 busy during Thanksgiving.

We begin this week’s “RUFF TAILS” featuring a beautiful Old English Sheepdog named Casey.

Casey is our very charming and playful Old English Sheepdog. She is turning 3-years-old this November and has stolen everyone’s heart since the day we brought her home.

Socializing her with new friends (humans and dogs alike) because of Covid proved to be a challenge with her already timid/fearful nature but she does warm up quite easily after a few minutes.

She loves being the center of attention but does have to share the spotlight with her half-sister Lexi and her cousin Luna some of the time. They have a blast playing together in the backyard. Casey’s favourite activities include inviting herself on any and every car ride, getting treats, going for walks, and being groomed. She will let me do anything while on the grooming table which is great because we spend 4-5 hours a week on grooming, not including bath days. LOL.

Casey is a very special girl, and we are so lucky to have her.

K9 Corner with the Chief

Hello folks, welcome to another segment of K9 Corner. I have always been amazed on the ability and thought process of our canines. Many humans have a misunderstanding of how to train a canine to learn a new behaviour. For example, humans learn from observing, reading, and physically applying ourselves on a certain task or project. However, this is very different for dogs.

I know there has been comprehensive studies on the average I.Q. of a dog, which studies have shown that dogs are equivalent to a 2-year-old human’s I.Q. However, in my professional opinion, based on my 30 years of professional K9 training and handling I would suggest otherwise.

When I reflect on my 6 police dogs, and the work they performed in the line of duty, it still shocks me today. The incredible accomplishments and high levels of training in different profiles (Patrol Dog, Detection Dog, Search and Rescue) was a huge eye opener and made me think they are smarter than a 2-year-old.

So how do canines learn? How are they able to do such high levels of off and on leash behaviour and obedience?

Canines learn from daily repetitive actions. When you introduce a new command and consistently train daily your K9 will learn it. Canines learn through association which is known as Pavlovian Classical Conditioning. This is a biological physiological stimulus which is paired with a neutral stimulus. The two stimuli are linked together to produce a new learned response in your K9.

In simple terms it means within a second of every behaviour your K9 should be reprimanded or praised in the correct manner to get the desired results. If you are consistent and repetitive it will surprise you, the levels of training you can and will achieve.

Welcome to Doggie Dialogue

With Thanksgiving just around the corner many families will be enjoying the festivities of family, food, fellowship and football.

During this busy holiday it is important to spend time with your K9. We recommend, if you can, keep your dog’s walking and feeding routine the same.

Before your guests arrive, we recommend draining some of your K9’s energy.

Here are some fun ideas for your K9:

You can go for an extra-long walk or a hike before the guests arrive.

You can enjoy some backyard football with your K9. Even though your K9 won’t be able to necessary catch the football, they will have fun chasing after it.

If you rake up some leaves in the back yard, your dog may enjoy jumping into the big pile of leaves.

When your guests arrive, if there is a lot of commotion, your dog may feel overwhelmed, get agitated, or even too excited and jump up onto your guests. We recommend if this occurs, to remove him/her and find a quiet place for your K9 to rest and relax.

Remember do not give your K9 any table scraps, as most of ALL the Thanksgiving foods are NOT safe for dogs.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!!

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