Monday, 28 August 2017

Review: tug-e-nuff rabbit skin bungee tug

There are many excellent dog toy products on the market but unfortunately many more that are not fit for purpose.

One product I always take with me to a training session in a tug-e-nuff rabbit skin bungee tug



Why do I like it?

The tug-e-nuff rabbit skin bungee tug has these features that make it perfect for working with a dog outside:
·         It’s real rabbit skin!  This will trigger your dog’s prey drive.
·         The bungee part means when the dog grabs the toy the tug is super rewarding and acts as a shock absorber for your arm!
·         It has a loop handle so I can keep hold of it securely.
·         It is very high quality.  I have had mine for 2 years now and it is still going strong.

So how do I use it? 

I use it exclusively as an interactive toy out on walks.  Dogs that are distracted on walks need something to break through to grab their attention.

When I first present it to a dog they don’t grab it.  They just stand and sniff it intently for a few seconds.  This is why I use the rabbit skin version!

They then grab hold of it and tug.  I get them into a super exciting tug game to reinforce it strongly.

Once it is primed for the dog I then put it back in my pocket ready for action.

Dogs that have a desire to chase bikes, skateboards, joggers etc can then be given the tug game as a super motivating alternative.

It can also be used as a reward for a dog with poor recall, especially for dogs that are not very food motivated.

To maintain the toy’s high value, I only use it when outside on walks.  I would never leave it down as a chew toy since being rabbit skin your dog will likely want to “kill” it as quickly as possible.

Please let me have your feedback if you have tried this product.

Do you need help with your dog chasing things he shouldn’t or with his recall?  Please contact Rainbow Dogs for help training your dog in and around Brighton, Hove, Shoreham, and Worthing.


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Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Some like it hot – but not dogs!


Some like it hot – but not dogs!


When the sun comes out in the UK we tend to get over-excited and common sense goes out the window.

Dogs are one of the most adaptable species on the planet and have evolved to live in most countries of the world.  We therefore do not need to over-react and keep them inside once the sun comes out but we should use some common sense.

Hot Surfaces

Have you ever walked barefoot on hot sand?  You will run, hopping and yelping until you get to the sea or some shade.  A good test is to hold the back of your hand on the ground for five seconds.  If it is too hot for you then it is too hot for your dog.

Dogs are barefoot all the time so if the sun is very hot then so is the pavement.  The simple solution here is to seek out shade.  In town, this may mean crossing the street to get the shade of buildings.  Where possible walk your dog on grass verges rather than the pavement since it will be much cooler.

Cooling down

When we get hot we sweat to cool down.  Dogs don’t!  Although they sweat a small amount through their paws the main way they cool down is by panting.  We sensibly take a bottle of water out with us when it is hot so do the same for your dog if you will be out for a while.  Fold-flat water bowls are really handy.

Have a rest

Chill out under the shade of a tree for a while.  This gives you both a chance to cool down.

Don’t run a marathon

Dogs are generally much more active in the park than we are so leave the ball at home when really hot since the motivation to play may override the motivation to rest.  If you do want to give your dog a good run then go out earlier or later in the day when it's cooler.

Garden

Have water and shade available in your garden.  A doggy paddling pool can also be great fun!

Grooming

When we are hot we can take a layer of clothes off.  Give your dog a good brush to get out the undercoat and remove matts.  Some breeds i.e. terriers can be stripped to reduce hair and some breeds can be trimmed.

Young, fit, and healthy?

A dog who is young, fit, and healthy will do fine in the sun with sensible precautions.  You may however need to be extra careful with puppies, older dogs, unfit dogs, or dogs with health conditions.  Seek your vet’s advice as appropriate.

Brachycephalic (short nose) dogs

Breeds like the very popular Pug and French Bulldog need extra care.  These dogs have been breed to have very short faces meaning they have more difficulty breathing generally and cooling down when hot.  Brachycephalic breeds can therefore quickly overheat. 

Heatstroke

If you are concerned that your dog may be suffering from heatstroke then get him into shade immediately.  Cool him down gradually with water but not rapidly with cold water or ice. Contact your vet for advice. 

Cars

It should go without saying now that dogs should never be left in cars on hot days.  Even if it does not seem very hot, if the car is in shade, if left for short periods, or if the window is open!  The temperature inside the car will quickly make it very unsafe for a dog with the possibility of heatstroke and death.  If you see a dog in a hot car don’t delay but call 999 for help.



Contact Rainbow Dogs for help training your dog in Brighton & Hove.


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