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Prepare Your Dog For Holiday Gatherings

Preparing your dog for the holidays can not only benefit your dog but also save you from unwanted stress. Cause let’s face it, the holidays can be stressful enough.

Here’s our advice :

🎄 During the holidays your schedule will be a bit different. You may be taking off work, running errands or even around the house more. For some dogs just the change of schedule can create stress. Prepare your dog now by giving the some “inconsistent consistency”. What do we mean by that? Be consistent in the behaviour your asking of your dog, but change the time of day. Or change the environment your asking them to do it in. Structure is important however we don’t want to be robotic.

🎄 Scream this one from the roof tops. Let’s face it, we indulge in some yummy food. Family is over, kids are playing, and the temptation is there for your dog. Without impulse control you may soon find your dog running off with your kids new favorite toy, or even that amazing Christmas Turkey you just made. Don’t wait for chaos, practice your place command, set up tempting items for your dog, reward them for making the right decision.

🎄 If your house is anything like ours, it gets loud. For many dogs this can create anxiety, stress and even panic. Slowly introduce your dog to louder noises and reward them when they demonstrate relaxation. Use their crate to create a safe calm space.

🎄 Crate.Crate.Crate.

Don’t wait till the party starts to introduce your dog to the crate. Many clients crate their dog just at night. Now using the crate sometimes is better then nothing. But if your dog is only used to being in the crate when everyone has gone to bed, distractions are very low during this time. Start practicing in small intervals during the day.

🎄 “So many tiny pieces” Something you will hear every Christmas morning in a house hold with kids. Every parents worst nightmare. Putting together all the new toys the kids get. Now add a dog in the mix. I chuckle as I write this, as it’s funny to think about. However your dog choking isn’t. So if your dog is one of those, that consistently grabs items and runs off with them. Fix that now. Practice your “Leave it” command. A fun exercise I like to do, is create a obstacle course with novelty items on the floor. Practice walking through it with your dog. When they look down at the item, ask them to leave it, once they do, wait a second , then reward them for doing the correct behavior.

We hope these tips help. We wish you nothing but an amazing holiday season. 🎄

Reach out to your local Grassroots K9 Location for further help.


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