Canine College Blog

New Year’s Resolutions for You, and Your Dog

The New Year is always a great time to reflect on the past, and plan ahead on some important goals you’d like to focus on for the future. You’ve probably thought of a few for yourself already, but what about your dog? Choosing a few specific goals to work on with your furry friend throughout the year is a great way to keep him happy and healthy. Check out some of our top picks for resolutions you can work on together! Measure Dog’s Food, and Choose Wisely Portion control is important not just for humans, but for pets too. After a while, many pet owners just “eyeball” their dog’s food for each meal. This can eventually lead to overfeeding and weight gain for your dog, or just the opposite if you’re under-scooping his meals. Be sure to use an 8-ounce measuring cup every time, unless otherwise specified by your vet, to control exactly how many calories he’s intaking. You’ll also want to check that the food you’re using is age-appropriate for your canine. For example, growing dogs have more substantial nutrient requirements than older dogs that may have low energy. Try New Activities It’s never too late to teach an old dog new tricks! Whether this means new commands that your dog has yet to master or a new activity such as hiking or swimming that you can do together. Switching up his exercise routine keeps things new and exciting for you both. Prioritize Oral Health It’s not the most glamorous activity, but oral health for your pets is imperative for his health. Did you know that as many... read more

The Best Holiday Gift Ideas for Your Dog

When checking your list to see who’s been naughty and nice this year… We hope your furry friend falls on the nice side of the list! While shopping for your dog should be fairly easy, it can be tricky to find something creative when he’s already spoiled with toys and treats! If you’re struggling with what to leave under the tree for your furry friend, here’s some of our favorite unique ideas that we think you, and your dog will love. Stuffingless Toy Is your dog an aggressive chewer? If so, you might be sick of buying him plush toys that he rips open, just for you to clean up the stuffing all over the house. No-stuffing toys are a great alternative. They are double-stitched for durability, yet light and freely moving which your dog will love. They’re easy to play fetch, with or use as a tug toy. And when they start to get dirty or smell, throw them right in the washer machine to be good as new again! Bob-A-Lot This interactive toy is an easy way to get your dog some exercise, and food at the same time!  All you have to do is fill it up and show your dog how to roll it around to dispense the food. The opening can be adjusted, allowing you to change the level of difficulty for your dog. The Bob-A-Lot can fit up to 3 cups of food, which should keep your dog busy for a bit! Interactive Dog Ball The FurryFido ball is another treat dispensing toy that allows your dog to simultaneously get some exercise. This... read more

Keeping Your Dog Safe, Healthy & Happy This Winter

With the winter months quickly approaching, there are many changes that come along with the season not just for us, but for our furry friends too. The temperatures changing drastically, the snow on the ground making, lack of sunlight, etc., take just as much of a toll on them. Check out our tips to make this winter bearable for your dog. Cozy Bedding   Creating a warm bed for your dog to sleep in this winter is essential. Floors can get quite cold in the winter time, especially if you have ceramic or porcelain tile floors. Make an elevated bed, with warm blankets and pillows. You can even buy a heated, elevated pet bed to get them off the hard floor. Place it in a warm spot away from drafts near the door or windows, preferably on a carpeted surface. Get Some Sunshine Try to take your dog for a walk in the late morning or early afternoon, if possible. Avoid early morning walks or late evening strolls, as this is typically the coldest part of the day. Let them get some sunshine and playtime after being cooped up in the house. Keep Dog Away From Heat Sources Just as we do, dogs tend to gravitate towards heat in the cold winter weather. Be careful of space heaters and fireplaces, as they can burn your dog if they come in contact. Never leave your pet alone near a fireplace, even if there’s a glass or mesh door. Pets can still get injured.   Don’t Overfeed You’re probably not getting as much exercise this winter, and neither is your dog!... read more

Halloween Candies to Keep Away From Your Dog

The Fall is always a season filled with traditions and festive activities. One of the most popular among families and children, probably being Halloween. For most, this is a fun holiday with sweet treats and silly costumes. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the holiday isn’t enjoyed the same by everyone, AKA your furry friends. With so many sweet treats around the house at this time, it’s important to remember that they can be quite harmful to your dog and pets. Even if you choose to not keep these harmful sweets in your house, on Halloween night when your child comes home and dumps out their big bag of candy from trick or treating, there’s a good chance they may have inherited some of these goodies from the neighbors’ house. Some of these Halloween candies are among the most dangerous foods for dogs to consume. Here’s a guide to help identify, and keep your dog safe from the treats that will inevitably be around the house in a few weeks. Chocolate Bars It is fairly well known that chocolate is a toxic food for dogs. Chocolate contains theobromine, which is toxic in high doses and can lead to symptoms such as vomited and diarrhea.In more severe cases it can also cause excitation and seizures. There may also be GI obstruction of they consume an excess amount, or the paper wrapper can cause obstruction and bloat, or even a twisting of the stomach which could be life-threatening. So to be safe, keep all chocolate candy bars out of your dog’s reach this Halloween season. Chocolate Covered Raisins In... read more

Pumpkin Season… For Your Dog, Too!

The temperatures outside are starting to drop, the leaves are slowly dancing their way from tree branches to the ground, and school is back in session; Fall is finally here!… And guess what, you’re not the only one that enjoys a daily dose of pumpkin spice! Did you know that your dog may also be a big fan of pumpkin? Although, they may not crave it for its tasty flavor, but rather the benefits it provides for their health. So, what is it about pumpkin that makes it good for your dog? How Pumpkin is Beneficial for Your Dog Although dogs aren’t going to sit at Starbucks with you and sip on a pumpkin spiced latte, they can benefit from small amounts of canned pumpkin supplemented into their diet. Research has shown that pumpkin can be used as a remedy for an upset stomach, promote a shiny coat and even improve your dog’s immune system. Pumpkin has many nutrients that can be beneficial to your pet. It is high in fiber, low in fat and cholesterol, and loaded with beta-carotene, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc and vitamin A and C. The fiber helps regulate their digestive tract, which is helpful if your dog is experiencing constipation or diarrhea. Additionally, the oils found in pumpkin seeds can support urinary health. Lastly, if your dog is a bit overweight, pumpkin is low in calories, so it may be a good dietary supplement to help your dog shed a few pounds. How Much Pumpkin Should Dogs Eat? Depending on the size of your dog, the amount of pumpkin that they will need in... read more

Integrating a Second Dog Into Your Home

If you’re anything like us, once you have one dog, you just keep wanting more! You couldn’t get enough of their puppy days before they grew up…It’s almost like baby fever for us dog lovers. And after all, wouldn’t your dog love a friend to play with when you’re out? Adding a second dog can mean double the cuteness… but it can quickly turn into double the trouble, if he’s not properly integrated into your home. Just as there are steps you need to take in order to “puppy proof” your home when getting a first dog, there are steps that need to be taken to make the adjustment smooth for both the new dog and your beloved first furry friend. If you do choose to get a second dog, take precautions, and avoid these common mistakes to ensure that both dogs will be healthy and happy in their environment. Common Mistakes When Getting a Second Dog:   1.Getting two dogs of the same sex and breed Who doesn’t love twins, right? Wrong. Although it may be adorable to walk around with two dogs that are almost identical, you’ll probably realize that there is quite a bit of tension between the two. Studies have shown that two dogs in the same household of the same sex and breed are much more likely to have inter-dog aggression. Since they have the same “hardwired” behaviors, it will take a lot of work in the training phase. When it comes to dogs, opposites certainly attract. Try getting a second dog whose behaviors will complement those of the first dog. 2. The two... read more

The Rules of Positive Reinforcement

When training your dog and teaching him basic commands, positive reinforcement can be a highly beneficial tactic to use. Dogs love a good treat, so it is an effective way for them to learn behaviors that you want them to know. However, if positive reinforcement is used incorrectly, it can actually confuse your dog and lead him to pick up some bad habits without you even realizing. We’ve laid out a few simple rules for you and your dog to follow, to avoid confusion and have successful training sessions. Timing is everything Dogs have a fairly short attention span, so it’s important to reward them on “dog-time.” Be sure that the positive reinforcement happens immediately following the good action. This ensures that they know exactly which action you are happy with, and they will be likely to do it again in the future. A delayed reward could confuse them into associating the wrong action with the positive reaction. For example, if you tell your dog to sit and you wait to reward him until he stands, he will think that by “sit” you actually want him to stand. It is essential that they are able to understand which actions you are praising. When to give treats When using positive reinforcement, it’s important to know how often you should be treating your pet. After all, the end goal is to get him to do the behavior on his own out of instinct. When your pet is first learning a new behavior, you should use “continuous reinforcement,” rewarding him every time he does the behavior. As your pet starts to understand... read more

Pet Fire Safety

According to a study by the National Fire Protection Association, nearly 500,000 pets are affected by home fires every year. Not only is it important to keep your pet safe from home fires, it is often overlooked how easy it can be for your pet to accidentally start a fire. As pet owners, it is our job to protect them and take precautionary measures to ensure their safety. These simple preventative actions could make a huge difference some day. Safety Precautions Keep pets near entrances when you’re not home- Since pets cannot escape on their own in the event of a fire, it’s recommended to keep them near an entrance if you’re going to be gone for a while. Keep them near a door with their collar on, and a leash at the ready. This way, a firefighter would easily find them and quickly be able to rescue them. Smoke detectors- In addition to a traditional smoke detector, you may also consider connecting a monitored detector that signals emergency responders. This will allow them to be contacted when you’re not home in the case of an emergency. These systems give an added peace of mind for you and your pets. Pet alert window cling- In the case that your pet is not near an entrance and easily accessible, it is important to have a static cling on your front window listing the number of pets inside. This saves the rescuer time when trying to find your pets, ensuring that no furry friend gets left behind. Extinguish open flames- Our pets can’t help their generally curious nature, so it’s important we are... read more

Keeping Your Dog Safe & Cool In The Summer Months

The sun is shining, the temperatures are rising, and the summer months are finally upon us! On those warm days, you’re not the only one starting to break a sweat…just imagine how it would feel in a fur coat! Hot weather can be a concern for the safety of your dog, but there are things that can be done to protect them. Here are a few tips to help keep your dog safe and cool during these hot summer months. Schedule Walks Accordingly The best time to take your dog for a walk during the summertime is early in the morning, or later in the evening. You should always check the temperature of the pavement; if it’s too hot to place your hand on for more than a few seconds, then it is too hot for your dog’s paw pads. Try to find a shady sidewalk or park to take a stroll in. If your dog is going to be in the sun for an extended period of time, consider applying some doggy sunscreen. As always, don’t forget to bring a water for yourself, and for your animal. Collapsible water dishes are a convenient way to keep your dog hydrated on walks! Never Leave Your Dog In A Car Your pet should never be left in a parked car for any period of time. On a warm summer day, temperatures can reach up to 120 degrees in a car within a matter of minutes. Even if the windows are left open, your car will heat up just as quickly. So if you’re going somewhere that your dog cannot go... read more

Why Choose In-Home Private Dog Training

At Canine College, we love it when our clients bring their dogs to our Holbrook facility for training classes. However, sometimes group dog training just isn’t in the cards for both the owner and their dog. In these instances, we’re here to provide in-home private dog training for Boston area residents. What Does In-Home Dog Training Entail? Glad you asked! In-home dog training from Canine College includes any type of training that we have available here at our Holbrook facility. Whether you have a puppy that needs basic Puppy Kindergarten or Elementary I courses, or a trained dog that’s ready to learn some new tricks. Our professional private dog trainers will come up with a custom-tailored training course for you and your pup — right from the comfort of your home. Why Choose Private Dog Training? Aside from the fact that private in-home dog training works around your schedule, there are a number of added benefits, including: One-on-one, full attention training We focus on the issues you want to focus on Cost effective in that private training courses will lead to quicker results Your dog will be less stressed Great for dogs that have temperament issues or are shy More bonding time with your dog If you are hoping to enroll in specialty dog training courses such as dock diving, show dog training and trick dog training, then these courses can also be provided at our Holbrook facility as a private lesson. Whatever your needs are, we always have a professional trainer on hand to meet you either at your home or in Holbrook for private dog training. Contact us today... read more
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