Get Fit with Your Dog|
Children make great dog trainers. They often have more time to spend with the family dog, and they love to play. Just make sure you don't leave your child alone with the family dog, especially if your child is young. You should be on hand, making sure your child and your dog are safe. Your child's age and maturity level will let you know if your child is ready to train your dog. Buy your child a clicker. Clickers can be purchased online or at most pet stores for less than $5. Make sure your child knows the clicker is a dog training tool, not a toy. You will also need a supply of dog treats, which your child will give to his dog as a reward for following each command. If you have more than one child, have them work as a team. Let one operate the clicker, and the other give the dog a treat. Have your child tell the dog a simple command like "sit." Show your child how to place his hand gently on the dog's lower back and have him press very gently so your dog will be in the sit position. Click the clicker as soon as the dog does what you as of him, marking the behavior. Reward the dog with a doggie treat and praise. Say "Good dog." Whenever you click, you must reward with a treat, so the dog understands click equals treat. Have your child repeat this process a number of times before moving on to the next command. The family dog should learn one command at a time. -Good girl. Tell her she was a good girl. -Good girl. -Once your child has the "sit" command down, have him teach your dog other popular commands like stay, come, down, and heel. Getting your child to take an active role in training the family dog will boost your child's confidence and strengthen the child-dog bond.
-Dog training should begin the minute you bring your new dog home. You can teach your dog basic commands such as sit, stay, down- -Yes. Good boy. -come, and heel. -Yes. -Keep training sessions short and fun so your dog will enjoy the process and want to do it again. Train around meal time so your dog will be hungry and interested in the treat you are presenting. Start with something simple like "sit." Sit is a position from which a lot of other commands are taught. -Sit. Yes. Good boy. -Use a cheerful voice. To get your dog to sit, put your hand on your dog's lower back and very gently push downward saying "Sit." -Sit. -Be prepared to say "sit" a number of times. Each time your dog accomplishes the task, reward him by saying, "Good dog," and giving him a treat. -Good. Very good. -Dogs respond well to repetition, praise, and an occasional treat. Be patient. And don't introduce another command until your dog has learned how to sit. Playtime is a great time for training your dog. If you're playing fetch with your dog, tell him to sit before you throw the ball. Once he learns this, add "come." Come is an especially important command as it can help you call your dog back to you if you were to ever run off. Once your dog has learned to sit and come, the other basic commands you should know are stay, heel, and down. By incorporating training into your daily routine, you will have a well-behaved dog.
While we don't speak dog, we can read their body language and understand what they're thinking. Check out the grin on this German Shepherd. With his tongue hanging out of his mouth, he appears relaxed and happy. Pugs have this "What? Me, worry?" look on their expressive faces. When they stare at you with their heads tilted to the side, they're trying to figure out what you want them to do. A wagging tail often means happiness or "I am pleased." However, it can also indicate nervousness. Even if a dog is wagging his tail, always ask the owner if you can approach. A new study shows that yawning is contagious between dogs, and between dogs and humans. Yawning is a sign of tiredness, and can also be a sign of stress. Some dogs, when introduced to new situations, may yawn. When a dog's eyes are partially closed, they're often relaxed. When a dog's mouth is closed or slightly open, he is calm. If his mouth is open and you hear panting, he's cooling off his body. Dog ears come in all shapes and sizes. When your dog is relaxed, he will hold them comfortably. When he is alert, his ears will be raised and pointed toward the position of the sound so he can hear better. If your dog barks excessively, has his tail tucked between his legs and cowers, he is exhibiting fearful behavior. If a dog looks past you or is avoiding your gaze, he may feel threatened. If a dog has his ears pinned back, is growling or showing his teeth, looking away, cowering, or whimpering, he may be agitated. A dog that's shy may circle around, or approach within a close distance, then back away. Look at your dog as a total package. You have to see his eyes, ears, tail, and entire body to measure his mood. After you get to know your dog, you can more easily read his body language.
For some people, bigger is better. Just make sure you live in a large home before you bring home a big dog. Large wagging tails are a sign of happiness, but a large tail can knock things over. Collies, like the most famous of their breed, Lassie, are incredibly smart and require a lot of attention. They also love being around kids. Elegant and easy-going, the Standard Poodle is known for smarts. This largest of the poodles aims to please, and their hair makes them ideal dogs for families with allergies. Despite their large size, the Bernese Mountain Dog is quite laid back. They're actually a bit standoffish if they don't know you. But once you bond with one, you will have a friend for a long time. Bernese Mountain Dogs even get along with cats. Golden Retrievers are one of the most playful dogs out there. Even as they age, they enjoy playing with children. For a well-trained Golden, you and your family should enroll in dog training classes together. A Newfoundland is a big bear of a dog. This breed requires lots of exercise and daily brushings. But despite their incredibly large size, this breed's temperament is relaxed, making them a great breed for kids.
If you're looking to hang with the big dogs, one of these big breeds may strike your fancy. Great Danes are known as gentle giants. Many Great Danes think they're lap dogs. And if you brush their short coats, play with them and give them lots of love, you'll be rewarded with kisses and loyalty. Mastiffs are broader and a bit smaller than Great Danes. They require romps at the dog park and large living quarters. Groom them and play with them on a daily basis, and your child will have a protective companion. Irish Setters are stunning to look at with their shiny red coats. They need affection, daily brushing, and lots of exercise. If your family is active, consider getting an Irish Setter. The popular cousin of the Irish Setter, the English Setter, is also from the British Isle. The English Setter is one of the most popular breeds because of its colorful spots and incredibly gentle nature. Setters love being outdoors and adore kids.
Big dogs can mean big fun for families. These breeds make great family dogs. Just make sure you have enough space for them to live and play. German Shepherds are the true definition of loyalty. They're also quite protective of those in their charge. That's why you often see them as police, guard, and military dogs. Their loyalty makes them a top choice for a family dog. Just show them some love and give them plenty of exercise, and you and your children will be rewarded with an over-abundance of love in return. Big and bouncy, English Sheepdogs are great once you train them. Their playfulness can get them into trouble, but training teaches them to be on their best behavior. They're fun-loving, incredibly sweet-tempered, and a bit stubborn. So, you'll probably want a professional trainer for this breed. German Shorthaired Pointers are perfect for families who love spending a lot of time outdoors. If you love to hike, jog, or toss around a Frisbee, this is a great family dog. Train a Labrador Retriever and you'll have a great dog on your hand. Otherwise, they can get into everything. They're great with kids-- probably because children and Labs love to play. Labrador Retrievers are even-tempered and quite athletic. So, if your family loves to get active outdoors, a Lab may be a perfect match.
Good things do come in small packages. When looking for a small dog for your family, ask yourself if you'd prefer a high-energy dog or one that's more laid back. Pembroke Welsh Corgis enjoy playtime. They're a natural for kids who like to run around. And even with those little legs, they're fast on their feet. They're intelligent and can fit right in with active families as long as they learn the packing order right away. Training will let your Pembroke Welsh Corgi understand he's not the leader of the pack. And a well-trained Corgi will endear himself to your family. Beagles are charming and loyal. And with a bit of training, they can become your kid's best playmate. Their short hair also makes them easy to groom. High-energy Bichon Frisés are happy as long as they are doted on by kids. Also, their hair, not fur, makes them great for families with allergies. They're easy to train and quite smart. Shih Tzu translates to lion. And these small package dogs are incredibly protective. They prefer a quiet lifestyle to an active one. So, if you like sitting around watching a movie, a Shih Tzu will probably sit on your lap. Maltese require loads of love and attention. They adore children. Grooming is a must, but their hair is perfect for those who have allergies.
-They may be small, but these breeds have lots of love to give. Miniature Schnauzers are best described as funky. They're great with kids, don't shed, and are considered to be hypoallergenic dogs. Give a Brussels Griffon Terrier some attention, and he'll follow you around for a long time. This breed is playful and endearing, and they make great pets. Just make sure to let this dog know from day one that he must live by house rules. Training is necessary for a well-behaved family dog. Havanese, the national dog of Cuba, are playful and gentle around children. Plus, they don't shed, and their hair makes them great for families with allergies. Boston terriers like being around kids because they crave attention and love to be played with. They're highly intelligent and need to be challenged, which is what training is all about. A well-trained Boston Terrier will be well-behaved and loyal. -Good boy.
Little and lovable. These small dogs are great with kids and make good family pets. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are a popular breed for families because of their whimsical manners and laid back attitudes. In the U.K., they're a top family breed. They're not nervous around kids, and are very intelligent. American Eskimos make excellent family dogs if you don't mind shedding. These adorable and protective pups are highly trainable and eager to please. Highly intelligent poodles go great with kids because of their friendliness and loyalty. Poodles come in three sizes: standard, miniature, and toy. They need to be groomed, but are hypoallergenic dogs. So, if you or your children suffer from dog allergies, a Poodle is a great breed to adopt.