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How to Train a Dog to Give Kisses

Giving kisses on command is a favorite dog trick for many people, especially children. It also happens to be one of the easiest tricks to train a dog to do.

What You Need
Some yummy treats are all that you need to train a dog to give kisses. Peanut butter or cream cheese works well because it's easy to smear a small bit on your cheek or hand. You may also want to keep a towel on hand, especially if you are working with a dog known to be a big drooler, like a St. Bernard or Mastiff!
Here's How to Do It
Take a little peanut butter or cream cheese and place a dab on your cheek (or wherever you would like your dog to kiss).

Give the command "give kisses."
Lean towards your dog, and let him do the rest. He should be eager to lick the treat from your cheek.

Practice this dog trick for a few minutes several times a day. It won't be long before your dog comes over to give you a big kiss every time you give the command!

Capturing the Behavior
Another method of training a dog to give kisses is tocapture the behavior. Here's how:
Anytime your dog licks you, tell him "give kisses."

You can also use a clicker to mark the behavior, just click the clicker anytime your dog kisses you.
After your dog has given you a kiss, tell him "good" and give him a treat. Your dog will soon be trained to offer a kiss on command, and all you had to do was to capture his natural behaviors.

TroubleshootingSome dogs get a little overly exuberant, and once you teach them to give kisses it can be tough to get them to stop. In this case, you can put an end to the kisses on command, too. When your dog is kissing you, tell him "enough." Wait for him to stop licking you, and then tell him "good" and give him a treat. Do this each time your dog is giving you kisses, and you'll soon be able to tell your dog to stop licking you whenever he gets out of control.

Some dogs are resistant to giving people kisses on the face. If this is the case for your dog, you can try using a treat he really loves, or you can train him to give kisses somewhere else, such as on your hand. Use the same steps as used above, but put the treat on the back of your hand rather than your face.

TipsKeep in mind that even though you may like big, wet sloppy kisses from your dog, not everyone will appreciate the affection. If you are going to try out this dog trick on your friends or visiting children, you may want to teach your dog to give kisses on the hand rather than on the cheek.

Why won't your dog kiss you?

Q: Reggie is the love of my life. He is a 4-year-old red wheaten cairn terrior and has been with me since he was 8 weeks old. He's friendly and well behaved with everyone from babies to grannies. The problem is he does not give his mommy, or anyone else for that matter, "kisses". He watches other dogs give their owner loving licks, but when I ask Reggie to give me a kiss, he literally runs away.Dog trainer Laura Garber helped TODAY’s Natalie Morales train her adopted dog Zara, and now she'sanswering your questions! This week, Garber tackles doggie kisses, solving eating problems, dealing with house training issues and more.

Do you think maybe he's just a gentleman and doesn't kiss and tell? Is there anything I can do to get this little guy to be a little more loving?

Also, Reggie is not a lap dog. He'll sit beside me, but never sits on my lap for more than 30 seconds. If I try to pick him up to hold him, he wiggles and squirms until I put him down. Also, Reggie only plays with girl dogs. If a male dog gets too close, he goes into his alpha dog mode — even if the other dog outweighs him by 50 pounds. So far no fights or biting, he just growls and the other dog takes off. Is there anything I can do to train him to be more social? — Carol from St. George, Utah

Do you have a dog training question? Ask Natalie's trainer!

Hiya, Carol! I think what’s standing in the way here is the great divide between canids and primates. What we humans call “kisses” with our dogs are anything but affection. Puppies lick their mother’s lips to elicit her to regurgitate the contents of her stomach for them to consume. Later in life, one dog may lick another dog’s lips as a submissive gesture to invite interaction but not a loving one. So, the anthropomorphic assumptions we make — and labels we choose — regarding dog behavior are, if anything, muddying the waters.

That your dog snuggles up against you and seeks such closeness speaks volumes about his attachment to you and is a very loving gesture.

— LauraAs for his reactivity towards other dogs, though I would need to see it to be definitive, it’s most likely defensive aggression due to fear and anything but the behavior of a secure dog. I would suggest that you seek the aid of a certified dog trainer in your area who works with aggression.

Q: Our 8-month-old Chesapeake retriever, Jack, is fully house trained. We rarely (if ever) have an accident in the house. However, he also will not relieve himself in his dog kennel! He has a large 15 by 15 kennel with fresh shavings and he holds himself until we let him out after work, sometimes waiting six hours! This can't be good for him. We've tried scooping his poop and pee and leaving it in a corner of the enclosure but he still won't do it. What can we do? — Lauren from Berlin, New Hampshire
Hiya, Lauren! By Jack’s age a pup can hold his bladder a good long time, certainly longer than the six hours required by your daily routine. If you have to leave him longer than eight or ten hours you should get a neighbor to give him a bit of a break half way through, as much for a break from the monotony as for pottying. But six hours is quite doable.

So I would most emphatically say don’t leave poop and pee in the corner of his enclosure. He’s trying to keep his area clean.

Hope that helps!

— Laura

Q:I have a 9-year-old Westie who is very smart, very protective and is the love of my life, but he has one very annoying problem. When the TV is on and he sees any animals, birds, or sometimes young children, he barks like crazy and runs to the windows and door — thinking the TV is a window. How do I get him to understand that it's only TV? — Debbie from Ossining, New York

Hiya, Debbie! When a dog is exhibiting an undesirable behavior, I try to imagine what I would prefer and then shape that behavior. In the case of a dog who’s getting aroused in front of the television, I would imagine that you’d prefer that he be lying quietly beside you as you watch TV.

Secondly, I would work on building his ability to relax, first in a calm environment and, again, gradually building to being relaxed in front of the TV. Check out my description of a relax protocol in my answer to Lisa from Vienna, Virginia back in May.I would train him to do this coming from a couple of different directions. First, I would work on the cafĂ©-ready default down, an exercise which was described in my recent article "ShapingCompanion Behaviors." This will teach him how to lie beside you. Start by practicing in a quiet environment with no distractions; then gradually increase distraction until he can do this while the TV is on. (Remember that your rate of reinforcement — or treating — may need to be fairly high when you finally put it to the test in front of the TV.)

Though it’s not explicitly part of your question, I would suggest that you not allow your pooch to look out the window and bark at passing people and animals. It can accentuate territorial behavior in the home, a phenomenon I describe in more detail in my recent dog blog entry.

— LauraStory: Practice with your pooch: Shape companion behaviors

Q: My dog Charlie is a young adult schnauzer Westie mix. He was a rescue from a puppy mill. We have had him for a few weeks and recently noticed Charlie likes to grab a mouth full of food and throw it onto the carpet where he proceeds to eat it piece by piece. How do I stop him?
— Ali from Chicago, Illinois

Hiya, Ali! I’ve had countless clients who have rescued dogs from puppy mills. The life these dogs, particularly the breeding pairs, have led up to the point of finding a loving forever home is just unimaginable. That you have opened your home to such a little soul is laudable and so special! If only more people did this, rather than buy puppies from pet stores who are the product of this appalling industry. Story: Dig, dog, dig! Stopping your pooch from making huge holes

That said, many of these dogs may have odd little idiosyncrasies due to their earlier impoverished lives. These behaviors may fade as time passes. You might try feeding him from different vessels (ceramic, plastic, etc) to see if he’s disturbed by the reflections in his metal bowl, for instance. Or he may not like the sound of his tags against his bowl, or he may feel a little uncomfortable where his food bowl is placed. If it’s against a wall, perhaps he feels cornered, or if it’s the middle of the room, he might feel exposed. I would experiment with different variables and see if you can find a way to make him more comfortable.

Hope that helps!

— Laura

Do you have a dog training question for Laura? Submit it here!

Laura Garber is a dog trainer and behavior specialist. She is the owner of WoofGang Dog Training.

My Dog Licking or Kissing

Is your dog kissing you when he slurps your facelike a lollipop? Although we may never know,there are several possible explanations for thisbehavior, not all of which are mutually exclusive.The motivation for face licking appears to vary fordifferent dogs and different circumstances.


Dogs lick for a number of reasons, some of whichare purely biological:
  • Bitches lick their newborn pups to arouse them from theirpostpartum daze. In this situation, licking serves to remove clingy membranes from the pup, freeing him up to move andstimulating him to breathe. 
  •  Once the birthing and clean-up processes are over, the mom dog's licking her pups stimulates them to eliminateboth urine and feces. It is a couple of weeks before pups will eliminate spontaneously.
  • Licking also serves another more romantic role in the sense that it is a comfort behavior that assists with pups'bonding to their mom and spurs on their mental development. 
  • From about six weeks of age, some pups lick their mom's lips when they want her to regurgitate food for them.They lick; she vomits; they eat it. This behavior is a vestige of their wild ancestry and was designed to ensure thatthey profited from the spoils of the hunt. 
  • Licking can also be a signal of submission and so is part of dog's body language communication system. 
  • Pups and adults lick and groom themselves. It is part of normal survival-oriented behavior. Licking their own lips, limbs, and trunk removes traces of the last meal that would otherwise begin to decompose and smell. Quite apart from the hygienic aspects of this behavior, it also serves to keep dogs relatively odor free and thus olfactorily invisible to their prey. Domestic dogs retain these instincts even though they are not vital today. 

Dogs, like people, engage in a number of "displacement behaviors" when nervous or stressed, and many of these behaviors involve self-grooming. You only have to glance to the side the next time you are stuck at a red light to see what I mean. The driver next to you will likely be stroking his hair, looking in the mirror, or trying to pick something out from between his teeth.

 Dogs do not experience the stop-go conflict of the traffic lights but they do have their own share of dilemmas. Take going to the vet's office, for example. We vets expect our more anxious patients to begin nervously licking their own lips as they enter the clinic. They may even lick or nibble their feet or flank.

 There is no doubt that some dogs lick as a gesture of appeasement and goodwill. They may lick their own lips or may lick a person to whom they wish to signal deference. If the recipient of the licking interprets this behavior as "make-up kisses," that's just fine. Perhaps the behavior is analogous to some forms of human kissing and thus their interpretation may be close to the truth.

 However, not all dogs seem penitent when they slurp the faces of people they meet. For some dogs, it seems that they engage in face licking because they can get away with it and because it gets a rise out of the person. When licking is performed for such a reason, it may be component of the "center stage," attention-demanding behavior of dominant dogs. No lick! is a good command to have working for these guys.

 Some sensitive dogs in stressful environments compulsively groom themselves to the point of self-injury. Licking of this type leads to acral lick dermatitis (a.k.a. lick granuloma). Compulsive licking by dogs is not always self-directed. Some dogs take to licking floors, walls, or furniture. Whatever the outward expression of compulsive licking, the mechanics underlying the disorder are the same. In treatment of this condition, first the underlying anxiety must be addressed though, in some cases, it is also necessary to employ anti-compulsive medication to help break the cycle.

Lovey Dovey?
I don't believe dogs express their sometimes quite profound feelings for their owners by licking or "kissing." In fact, I don't believe dogs really "kiss" at all. Perhaps some dogs are so awed by their owners that they feel the need to signal their ongoing deference by face licking. Call it love, if you will.

One other thing we should always bear in mind is that any behavior can be enhanced learning. Psychologist BF Skinner immortalized the concept that reward increases the likelihood of a response. So it is with licking. If a dog licks his owner's face – perhaps as a vestige of maternal lip licking, perhaps out of anxiety, or just because his owner's face tastes salty – and his behavior is greeted with attention, hugs and (human) kisses, he will likely repeat the behavior in future. In such cases the dog learns just how to push he owners buttons and the owner becomes analogous to a vending machine.

So while face licking may not represent true romantic love, it nevertheless can sometimes be interpreted as some token of a dog's affection or respect ... and that's nothing to sniff at.

The Best Ways To Store dogs Food

Pet food can turn out to become a pretty huge expensive, especially if you are the owner of large or many pets. But still, paying good is not enough for providing quality foods to your puppies pets. For proper pet care, it is necessary to store the pet foods appropriately so that they don’t lose their nutritional value.

Pet food storage helps in preventing the food from a wide range of possible threats, including bacteria, insects, mold, and even oxygen itself. For your kind information, the oxygen presence can leads to oxidation which is the same process that results in iron rust. Although oxidation cannot be absolutely prevented, you can at least try to reduce the process. Keep pet food in its original container whenever possible and also place it inside a sealable container. This helps the pet food to stay fresh and hygienic for a longer period.

Bacteria are also one of the major threats to the safety and quality of pet food that your lovely baby pet no matter pet dog or pet cat will rely on to survive. Bacteria thrive in circumstances that are dark, moist, and warm. Well, it might be tough to remove the darkness factor from the storage of pet food but you can no doubt try to control the moisture and temperature to some extent. Store the pet food in a dry, cool place.  Avoid bathrooms and basements as they tend to encourage moisture. The same guidelines apply when it comes to mold prevention.

Moreover, insects also can cause a huge harm to pet food -causing a negative impact to pet care. So, make sure that the seal of pet food container has been sealed tightly enough to not let them secure their entrance.  Lastly, don’t forget to check the expiry date of pet food before purchasing it. Keep in mind that there is no point in trying your best to store the pet food as perfectly as possible keeping proper pet care in mind if the pet food you bought is already expired. Get only the best pet insurance policies from Bow Wow at great prices.
If you’re looking for quality pet supplies, visit Pets Corner, an online pet shop.

ability sense toxic compounds of Pet dogs

Washington, April 27 : Pet dogs could serve as 'biosentinels' for monitoring human exposure to toxic compounds present in shared households.

Marta Venier and Ronald Hites environmental scientists from the Indiana University believe pet dogs could help sense these compounds, thanks to the presence of chemical flame retardants in their blood at concentrations five to 10 times higher than in humans, but lower than levels found in a previous study of cats.

Dogs may be better proxies than cats, they say, because a dog's metabolism is better equipped to break down the chemicals, reports the journal Environmental Science & Technology.

The study focuses on the presence of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in the blood of dogs and in commercial dog food, according to an Indiana statement.

PBDEs have been widely used as flame retardants in household furniture and electronics equipment. The compounds can migrate out of the products and enter the environment.

"Even though they've been around for quite a while... The bottom line is that we still need to keep measuring them, particularly in homes," said Venier.

PBDE mixtures made up of less-brominated compounds are regarded as more dangerous because they bioaccumulate in animal tissues.

These mixtures were banned by the European Union and were voluntarily removed from the US market in 2004, but remain in the environment. Mixtures with more-brominated compounds remain in use in the US, but will be phased out by 2013.(IANS)

Cleaning Dog's Teeth?

Fast, when was the final time a person brushed your own Dog is teeth? Obviously, I understand what you’re most likely thinking: “Oh my personal god, it had been the day time before the other day! I’m a terrible puppy mother or father for getting skipped each day! ” Truly, though, the idea of cleaning a Dog is teeth are actually foreign to numerous people. Just who’re these individuals who actually clean puppy the teeth, anyway? I am talking about, is which not a bit weird? A bit twisted, actually? Eccentric? The notion of the crazy Dog -person will come to a number of your minds if you do not know the particular strong advantages that cleaning your Dog are teeth may have for your own canine’s wellness.

Many people think that a Dog is teeth will remain nice as well as strong so long as they possess their bone fragments to gnaw on. They believe that this may somehow help to make their Dog is teeth brighter. Of program, this is false. Certain Dog bone fragments are formulated to assist a Dog along with cleaning it’s teeth, however, if the actual bone is too large or as well hard-or tooth of the actual Dog gets too decayed-then the bone might be just the matter that leads in order to chips as well as pain-ridden young puppies. The whitening of the Dog is teeth are due to oral cleanliness, and it really is a extremely important part in order to healthy upkeep of any kind of pup.

If you have a Dog who matures without cleaning, you might find yellowing as well as decay close to their the teeth, just as if you would within humans. Obviously, a Dog is diet is actually more restricted than the usual human’s-they eat a horribly little bit of sugar along with other cavity-causing things of this nature, for instance-but that doesn’t mean that the Dog is teeth won’t yellow or even rot. Therefore, that involves the query: What will you do about this?
Well, very first things very first: the natural response to that would be to take the actual Dog to some vet for any clean-up. No Dog will need their the teeth brushed every single day, but a normal and most likely much-needed cleanup might be just what a doctor (or vet, in this particular case) purchased. A clean-up is a simple process by means of the Dog gy dentist eliminates the levels of accumulation that result in staining as well as tooth rot. You might want to go at some point, too, simply because, once the actual Dog is stains exist; it takes a lot more than just a couple trips towards the veterinarian to obtain them away.
When a person picture cleaning your Dog is teeth, you might easily picture the hellish nightmare full of wagging mind and growling barks, because what type of Dog may sit presently there idly by as you rub the bristle down and up its gums as well as teeth? The solution to which, my buddies, is the well-trained Dog. Are you aware that there tend to be special manufacturers of toothpaste made simply for keeping Dog s thinking about keeping their own teeth their own whitest? Alright, it most likely doesn’t really make a difference to the actual Dog exactly what you’re placing around its teeth,

simply because they don’t understand why you’re doing the work, but if it’s a delicious smell into it, that may help things. Ensure that you get the actual Dog accustomed to the thought of sitting still for the entire shebang through training this to sit down and stick with you. Also ensure that it is confident with you close to its the teeth, or you might find yourself uncomfortable using its teeth close to you

more picture so great about dogs

10 dog's Training Tips

Here’s a thought-provoking article, written by Kevin Salem, on the 10 biggest mistakes people – even dog trainers - make during dog training! Do you agree?

1: Training Ruins a Dog’s Personality and Breaks His SpiritDog abuse does that–not proper training combined with dog psychology. When you catch your dog making a mistake, you need to correct it, not punish it. There is a big difference!
2: Train Your Dog with Treats and He Will Eventually Listen to You Just As Well, Even Without Any Tidbits Forever and Ever After Wouldn’t you rather rely on your Love, Leadership, Praise and Technique, instead of Hotdogs, Cheese, Biscuit and Dried Liver? Let’s face it, it doesn’t take much talent OR skill to bribe a dog to death and then confuse it with dog training. Everybody knows that’s simply–”bribery!”

3: Dog Parks Are the Best Place to Get Your Dog SocializedThis is where your dog actually picks up lots of bad habits that aren’t easy to break.

4 Don’t Bother Giving Your Dog ANY Commands, Until You Get His Visual Attention by Saying, “Watch Me!”First Answer this honestly! Would you rather have your dog look at you or actually “listen” to you? I prefer both. But we all know that LISTENING is far more important.

5: Since “NO” Doesn’t Get Your Dog’s Attention Anymore, Change it to “Eh”, “Eh-eh” or “Shht” InsteadYou definitely want your dog to stop whatever it’s doing the second it hears,”NO!” Even if you have been somewhat successful in getting your dog’s attention with strange terms such as: “Eh,” “Eh-eh,” or my favorite of all–”baaaah.”

6: You Can Solve Your Dog’s Bad Habits, Which Mostly Occur in Your Home, by Joining an Obedience ClassHere is the main problem with dog classes: they are structured to teach your dog the “obedience factor” only! Ask yourself AND the trainer conducting that group class, how are you able to solve my dog’s bad habits that mostly occur in my HOME, by joining your group class that is full of ten more unruly dogs?

7: You Can’t Really Teach a Young Pup Under Four Months Old. And If Your Dog Is a Few Years Old, You Are Totally Out of Luck!No dog is ever too young or too old to learn what is right and what is wrong, what is acceptable and what is not. It doesn’t really matter whether your dog is an eight week old pup or a stubborn eight year old dog.

8: All Dogs Can Be Trained with the Same Training ToolThere is no magical tool that works on EVERY dog. Some dogs are just too strong, too big, too fast, too stubborn, and too sneaky for their poor owners. So which training tools do top trainers swear by? The answer may surprise you. But they too rely on whatever tool that works best for them and their dogs.

9: Dogs Were Born to PleaseSorry to burst your bubble, but the majority of our dogs would rather please themselves first. It’s obvious that your dog loves you dearly, but don’t confuse that with “respect” or “obedience.”

10: If You Send Your Dog Away to Be Trained, It Will Learn to Listen ONLY to the Trainer and Still Ignore Just Like BeforeHere’s how I will bust this myth once and for all! No dog trainer can argue with the fact that all the best-trained dogs you can think of have been trained by an expert first. Dogs for the blind, dogs for the handicap, hunting dogs, and attack-trained police dogs, are just to name a few.

9 Steps to Training Puppy .

If you are going to be bringing a puppy home that hasn’t been house trained, you can use this step-by-step guide. There are nine steps in the process of house training outlined here. Being consistent and persistent in the house training process are of great importance if you are going to be successful.

The 9 Steps….
1.The right size of dog crate is vital. Make sure you get one before your puppy arrives. This means it should be big enough so your puppy can turn around in it and lay down in it but not much bigger than that. This will become your puppy’s den and his instinct is not to soil it. If he can sleep on one side of the crate and have enough room for a toilet area at the other side, he probably will. Don’t be surprised!

2. Make sure you are free for at least two days, so that you can remain with your puppy. He’s going to need taking outside a lot to begin with – from every half an hour to every hour.

3. You may want to limit the puppy’s access to certain areas of the house until he is house trained.

4. There are particular times when he is very likely to require taking outside, so take him out at these times: when he awakens in morning, when he gets up from a nap, after he’s been exerting himself (for example, playing hard), after eating or drinking and before he retiring to sleep at night.

5. When he arrives he is going to require you to take him outside every thirty to sixty minutes, until you learn to recognise the signals that he wants to poo or pee. The sign may be sniffing, circling or backing up.

6. Once you notice the signal that he wants to relieve himself, you need to take him outside as fast as you can and wait until he does his business.

7. When he does his business, immediately give him lots of praise and attention.

8. You can leave your puppy in the crate for an hour when you cannot watch him for a time. But you must firstly lead him to be content to remain in his crate. The way to achieve this is through giving small tasty treats when he is next to the crate and then gradually tempting him inside with them. Once he’s been in a few times, shut the door very briefly and then open again. The time the door is left closed should be lengthened gradually. You can also put an interactive toy or a dispensing toy in the crate to keep him occupied.

9. If he does have an accident and makes a mess in the house, just ignore him when he does it but be sure to clean it up and clean the area with an enzymatic cleaner or hot biological washing powder solution. If you do not clean it in this way, there will still be a scent detectable by your puppy and he is likely to do his business there again.

Pet Safety

Of pooches and pools: Teaching your dog to swim
Not all dogs can dog-paddle, but you can train them to be safe in the water

There are certain things we assume dogs know by instinct. Sniffing, for instance, sometimes in embarrassing places. Barking, too, and begging for food scraps are also downloaded onto dogs’ internal computers at the factory.

Then there’s swimming. It seems so integral to being a dog that we’ve even named a stroke after them, the dog-paddle — so you’d assume that’s another thing that every dog is born knowing how to do.
It turns out that you’d be wrong. Not every dog knows instinctively how to swim, and some can’t swim at all, Wendy Diamond, the founder and editorial director of Animal Fair magazine, told TODAY. Dogs’ aquatic abilities are so misunderstood, in fact, that she put together a list of water safety tips for dog owners.
She shared them with TODAY’s Maria Celeste on the Plaza at Rockefeller Center on Tuesday, putting a variety of dogs — some tricked out in sporty personal flotation devices — through their splashes.

Diamond confirmed that some dogs are born swimmers. It’s a good bet if the dog’s breed includes the word “water,” as in Portuguese or English water spaniel, it takes to swimming like a nursery-schooler takes to finger-painting. For owners of those breeds, the problem isn’t getting the dog into the water, but keeping it on dry land.

Dogs that don’t paddle
But other breeds aren’t as water-friendly. Some dogs have to be taught to swim, Diamond said, and others, like bulldogs, take to the water like submarines take to the Cross Bronx Expressway. For the former, there is hope. For the latter, there are those bright orange canine flotation devices.

Among the dogs that swim naturally and gladly, she said, are water spaniels, setters, retrievers, Barbets, akitas, Kerry blue terriers, poodles and Hungarian pulis.

Among those that can’t swim at all or swim only with great difficulty are basset hounds, bulldogs, dachshunds, pugs, corgis, Scottish and Boston terriers and greyhounds.

And then there are dogs like the Maltese, which are capable swimmers, but which are also susceptible to rheumatism, arthritis and chills that could be exacerbated by taking them in the pool with you.

Using wading pools set up in Rockefeller Plaza, Diamond gave a quick course on how to introduce a dog to the drink. Most of her rules were similar to those one would use with children, including never leaving a dog unattended at a pool. Even a dog that knows how to swim can jump in a pool and not be able to get out, which could lead to drowning, she said.

Diamond has a checklist for doggy swim lessons:

Avoid excessive noise
“Take them to an area that’s not so crazy and hectic,” she advised. Like children, dogs can become frightened and confused if there’s a lot of noise and activity around them. The object is to keep them calm and focused on the swimming lesson.

Use encouragement
As when teaching a child, keep your voice upbeat and positive, she said. “Using treats and toys to encourage your dog to enter the water also works quite well,” she said.

Never throw them in
Just as you shouldn’t throw a child in the water and expect it to swim to safety, you shouldn’t do that with a dog, Diamond said. “Don’t force the dog. If they don’t want to do it, don’t force them to do it.” Instead, she told Celeste, “Slowly put them in the water and get their paws used to it.”

Support their weight until they paddle 

Even if the dog is wearing a life vest, Diamond said, support its midsection and hindquarters in the water until they start paddling and feel comfortable.

Show them how to get out
Getting a dog in the pool is only half the battle. Diamond reminded pet owners that they also need to be shown where the steps are in the pool so they can easily get out.

Keep an eye on them
Even in the water, dogs can wander off. Dogs that swim naturally and well can jump in the ocean and keep swimming until they’re lost, Diamond said. “You want to make sure, like children, that you watch where they’re going,” she said.
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