Need some skincare relief?

I promise guys, come Monday I will have a beautiful puppy surprise for you and lots of training advice moving forward, but I wanted to be sure to share with you guys some great BLACK FRIDAY deals from OSEA Malibu!

BLACK FRIDAY OFFER 2017 – Free Mega Glow Gift Set
with any purchase of $125 or more

NEW Vitamin C Probiotic Polish +
Full Size Cleanser of Your Choice

These products are changing my skin- for the better. My skin is the clearest its been for awhile- without blemishes and I’m watching blackheads pop out quicker than they did with strips.

Thanks OSEA for helping make a difference in my skin!

Thank you for being dedicated to organic, vegan, cruelty free products.

Interested in using what I have been? Follow this link! Remember, with a $125 purchase or more you get a NEW Vitamin C Probiotic Polish + Full Size Cleanser of Your Choice! To keep for yourself…or gift to a friend. Because it is the season!

Natural Acne Treatment, Effective, Vegan Acne Control Shop now for free shipping over $75

Questions! Shoot me a comment or PM me on facebook!

OSEA Malibu

This post doesn’t really relate to dogs, at all but I still feel like some of you can relate with me on this post; poor skin complexions. I feel like I have tried a lot of products with varying degrees of success but I always feel defeated as long term for some reason it just stops working for me. It’s very frustrating and effects my self confidence. I’m almost 30- why can’t I just have clear skin?
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I love using minimal make-up but with breakouts and poor complexion, I feel forced to use more makeup than I really want to cover up the imperfections. In the past, the products that tended to work to clear up my skin, also tended to irritate my skin after time.

Recently we were sent a few products from the wonderful company OSEA Malibu. So far, I have been really happy with the 4 products OSEA Malibu has sent to me. They are the Ocean Cleansing mud treatment, The Blemish Balm, the Essential Corrective Complex, and the Red Algae Mask.

 

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I haven’t been using OSEA for long, but I can already see a difference. Currently, I can tell my skin is detoxing and as my skin is clearing up I love the change I can see coming. My skin is soft and smooth, I’m not blotchy and after I am finished with the products I always feel so refreshed.

OSEA Malibu is also committed to using non-toxic ingredients and packaging. They products are also vegan, cruelty free, gluten free and non-GMO. To top it off, Osea is a female founded family business, that use pure, organic material to bring you natural skin care, that works.

I’ll be keeping you updated on how OSEA works for me!

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Turning those Monday Blahs around!

How do you stay upbeat on your Monday’s?!

When the start of the week dawns cold and blustery, with a side of rain the week can appear that much longer.

To keep things fun and happy at our house today, we used our Monday to refresh Sheldon and Kingstons training on the easy behaviours such as; focus under distraction, sit, down, stay, come etc. It is important to refresh your dogs memory even on the simple behaviours so you don’t lose them- and yes your dog can ‘unlearn’ material if you do not practice. For example, at one point I could do long division on paper. Now I struggle even with a simple question because I no longer practice long division like I used to. This is the same with your dogs. At one point, if you put the time and effort into your dog’s training, odds are they were enthusiastic and really performed when you needed them too. However if you have dwindled your practice back and are only asking in tougher, real like scenarios when there isn’t always reinforcement given, your dogs behaviour could actually be extinguished because it is no longer being reinforced regularly. Dogs need to practice as the behaviours we want them to perform, usually aren’t the behaviours they want to perform.

Today Sheldon and Kingston will be also be adventuring with me to Chapters Masonville and Home Hardware (pictured below) to escape the rain. This provides enrichment so they can see things and smell things they normally wouldn’t get the chance too while we do some more training. This will help them stay happy today as well as they really tend to dislike walking in the rain.

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What is your favourite dog friendly store to adventure to with your pooches? We’d love to know!

Until next time, keep those tails wagging and those clickers, clicking!

Blue-9 Pet Products Ambassadors!

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Surfing facebook earlier in August I saw a post from Blue-9 Pet products and they were looking for ambassadors for their products. I entered in hopes to be chosen but in truth, I wasn’t expecting much! There were over 600 comments on the page and a lot of big name accounts and people who were entering. Never did I imagine that we would get chosen to be one of their Ambassadors!

On September 1 we got the news! We were chosen and I was ecstatic. I remember I texted my boyfriend right away with the news; I was far more excited than he was. When my products came in we started playing with them right away! Sheldon gleefully helped me open the package, ripping, tugging, and tearing the cardboard. As soon as our KLIMB came out Kingston and Sheldon jumped right on and started offering behaviours. You see, I own another table top that we practiced different behaviours on but unfortunately it was made of hardwood and it was SO heavy to move anywhere. Actually, I struggled to load it in my car after finding it on the side of the road but I am a very determined person when I get my mind made up, and that table was coming home with me. Now that table (pictured below) sits in my backyard and my KLIMB comes everywhere with me.

_DSC0416Along with the KLIMB came two awesome BALANCE HARNESSES. Balance harnesses are a no-pull harness that is designed so it does NOT interfere with shoulder movement.  This is huge as many No Pull Harnesses cut right into the shoulder which can create gait issues farther down the track. The Balance Harness has two clips: On the front, and on the back so you are not forced to use the front clip option if your dog is trained to walk properly on a harness. There are also 6 points where you can adjust the fit. I run into problems all the time with narrow bodied dogs who don’t fit the no pull comfortably or the harness hangs down SO low on their bodies again creating an awkward. No more issues with fit due to the adjust-ability of these harnesses! There are 3 different clips on the harness so they are very easy to put on and even easier to take off and the back strip comes in different colours to personalize to your pooch.

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I will be using the Balance Harness not only on my dogs, but also on my clients dogs. I LOVE the fit, the style and the comfort of these harnesses. They are heavy duty and made to last and help curb even the strongest pullers. These harnesses I’m not worried about leaving on my dogs during hikes to run or even when they are home. I will be using the KLIMB to help teach different behaviours but also to use for conditioning and strength training for my pooches.

Have any questions? Don’t hesitate to ask 🙂

#blue9petproducts #theKLIMB #Balanceharness

 

 

 

My dog pulls me everywhere!!

This is one of my most common complaints I get as a dog trainer; my dog pulls! How do I get my dog to walk nicely on a leash?!

Dogs pull mainly because they have learned it gets them somewhere; Dog pulls, human follows be it to that bush to sniff, to that person or dog to greet, to that morsel of food that was dropped on the ground or just to go faster, pulling works!

One thing I have noticed in my home town is that people are getting dogs only to not put work into training them, using training tools improperly, and ignoring their dogs on their walks.

In this blog post I want to concentrate on the above issues before getting into training solutions.

When purchasing (be it from a breeder or rescue) a dog please look at the breed standard. Ask about the dogs energy level. If they mention “high drive,” “energetic,” or “hyper” and you are looking for a sofa dog, odds are that dog is not for you. If you are okay with those labels please commit yourself to giving your dog proper channels of exercise- three 15 minute walks a day will NOT be enough for a high energy dog. Same with unlimited trips into the backyard to play. Your high energy pup will require more exercise and stimulation than yard trips and short walks. Set aside more time then you think you need for exercise AND for training. There is a saying that goes something like, “A tired dog is a good dog!” but if you are only working your dogs body, running them, throwing balls constantly, or bringing them to the dog park to rip, you are not engaging their brain. You can create a dog with amazing endurance in which you have to keep working HARDER to tire that dog out. There needs to be balance between working your dogs brain (which will tire them out) and working your dogs body.  I find a couple training sessions (5-10 minutes in length) paired with a long walk (45 minutes-1 hour) with a couple playtimes in the yard (tossing a ball, playing tug, scatter feeding and engaging your dog in chase) will tucker out a higher energy dog.  Some dogs may still need more (training classes are a wonderful thing for these pups) but don’t worry, you can still teach your dog a off switch; I will talk about that at a later time.

Another pet peeve of mine is when I see people using training tools improperly. Training tools are anything that help managing your dogs pulling from head halters, no pull harnesses, choke chains, prongs etc. When you are using one of these tools you should be either training your dog or managing the behaviour. Managing means you are setting your dog up to NOT practice pulling you around. A lot of the times, I see all of these tools I listed above not being used properly. Either the fit of the tool is off or they are using one of these tools with a flexi lead and the dog is 20 meters ahead of their owner, still pulling to go faster. Talk to a local trainer about proper fit and how to use that training tool effectively. Your goal should not be to have your dog use that tool for the rest of their doggie lives, but to use that tool to teach your dog NOT to pull so you can move them to either a flat collar or a harness.

Lastly, you need to engage your dog in order for them to want to engage with you. Put down your cellphones friends. Stop texting, surfing facebook, or playing candy crush and give your dog your undivided attention. When they are walking next to you talk to them happily, give them some cookies, give them some scratches. How would you feel if you were walking with someone and every time you turned to say something you thought was interesting, they were zoned off into their phone? This is how your dog feels. Give them your time. Start that engagement, teach them that you are far more fun then some of the things in their environment that they pull towards.

So to start: Exercise the dog you have to their needs; playing with your dog before walking them can help with a less pully dog, use your training tools properly and talk to a trainer about fit and function, and engage with your dog!

Now enjoy your Saturday with your dog and plan how you can actively change how your dog behaves by changing your own behaviour 🙂

Happy Training!

 

CARO @ The Poodle Farm

Holy, I set aside a blog post for a week and a month later I return…

Let me set the scene. It was August 27th and I was up far too early for a Sunday morning….Before 8:30 I had been out to grab tea and gas, walked Sheldon and Kingston, fed them, packed the crates in the car and other needed items (chopped treats, water) before my bestie Sophia met up with me and her pup Ebony to join in on the fun of Caro Rally. We started competing last year with our dogs and have tried to make as many trials as we can at The Poodle Farm because they are always so friendly and inviting. We learn more each time we attend and the dogs love it there! Debbie does a great job at hosting these trials and everything always runs so smoothly and on time.


Some people may not be familiar with Rally Obedience, so let me break it down. Rally Obedience isn’t quite as strict as regular Obedience. You are encouraged to talk to and provide positive feedback for you pooch. CARO Rally (What we did today) also allows you to feed your dog in Novice and Advanced. Once you are past Advanced, no more food in the ring is allowed. In CKC Rally, you are only allowed to verbally encourage your dog and not feed them.

There are pylons set around the ring with signs attached. The signs provide the behaviour you need to accomplish. Some signs are the normal speed or directional changes; normal, fast, slow, right turn, about turn, left turn, etc. Some signs specify positions you need to do; Sit-down, down-walk around, call front-finish right, call front-finish left halt, etc. Before your division runs you are allowed a 10 minute course walk with other competitors. You may ask the judge questions about signs if needed and practice sans-dog before bringing your partner into the ring. Once you are in the ring, a certain amount of repeats are allowed at station, but too many repeats will end up with a N/Q score. Courses are judged with a score out of so many and highest score wins. If there is a tie on scores, the faster competitor wins.

I find the atmosphere in CARO to be far more relaxed and easy going then CKC. Since you are allowed to feed (governed by rules of course; food must be kept in opposite pocket, you must hand treats from right to left hand, and you can only feed on signs that have a HALT in them) it is amazing for introducing dogs to dog sports! I am all about competing, however if my dogs aren’t having fun is there still a point of pursuing it? I am about relationship; I want to enjoy time with my dog, after all he didn’t put the entry form in, I did!

Kingston’s first round was a bit rocky as he familiarized himself with the routine; by rocky I mean there was a few signs we missed the first time and went back to repeat. Everything he did today was enthusiastic and wonderful! Not once did I lose him to sniffing which has happened in the past and is our biggest struggle in CKC obedience.

By the second trip King had everything in the bag and it was handler error that had us miss a few signs. In every trip he was loose, wiggly and had a blast; he fired over the jump each time taking it with more speed then really needed but he did it the right way (well after the first drive by and spin back to jump)

All and all, I am SO happy with how today went. Kingston is young, only two and we have years to develop. I am looking at how he is doing in pieces vs the large picture. Everyone small piece that comes together adds to that big picture.

My biggest piece of advice? Don’t sweat the small stuff. Encourage don’t punish; punishment can create avoidance which then slows your dog down on a behaviour ( a slow sticky down vs a quick and attentive down) and most of all, HAVE FUN.

**Our first trip in the ring. I did not crop any footage or delete anything so you can see how we trained and developed. I just really wished I filmed our second or third round so you could see how we progressed!

Sheldons Story

Sheldon is really the dog that started my journey into the positive reinforcement world.

I still remember finding his add on Kijiji. I had just moved in with my boyfriend Tim and it was my first time in years without a dog; I had tried to bring Darcy into our apartment and it really stressed her out so we made the decision on leaving her with my parents. My apartment was just too quiet and I had far too much time on my hands and I just wasn’t coping dog-less. After finding his internet add and sending a quick email to the poster, I showed Tim and convinced him to go see him with me. It was nerve racking. I remember having to work in the morning and being terrified that someone would scoop Sheldon (then known as Tucker) before we got there to see him. When we got there, we were told that the rescue had really liked our application and thought we would be the perfect home for Sheldon. We adopted Sheldon that afternoon without asking too many questions about him and brought him home. It was love at first sight, we truly were smitten.

When I did inquire about his history, I found out the little 8 week old fluff had already lived in an apartment with owners who found him to be “too much” before being surrendered to a rescue at 7 weeks. He stayed with foster care for a week before I brought him home. This means he was rehomed to the original home as early as 5 or six weeks and since he came to foster covered in fleas, it’s easy to assume he was a second thought in his first home. This really should have been a red flag for me, however no knowing much about dog behaviour at the time it passed without a second thought until later when different behavioural issues started to arise.

We found out very early that he was insecure around other dogs. My best friend Brianna had brought over her 9 week old lab Guide Dog in Training named Yahoo. Yahoo approached Sheldon appropriately and yet Sheldon snarled, growled and then started pummeling poor Yahoo. Brianna and I just looked at each other, separated the pups then decided to go for a walk. Slowly Sheldon learned how to trust Yahoo and we started introducing him to other calmer pups. Sheldon and Yahoo were fast friends after a couple of interactions. Now Sheldon has his dog friends and tolerates most dogs; his least favourite type is dogs who like to get into his face and jump and lick him. He’s much more about polite butt sniffs and moving on than wrestling. When he does meet a dog he likes he gets very whiney and loves to initiate a good game of chase!

We realized that Sheldon wasn’t just nervous with other dogs, but also strangers; especially men, any person with a disability, as well people in hats and sunglasses. Living on the 7th floor of an apartment, we encountered his fears everyday in the elevator, the foyer, and outside on walks. His behaviours started small, but after some poor encounters with other people in our Apartment building, his behaviour started to escalate. He started growling and barking, sometimes lunging towards them. He was also afraid of my two brothers and any man who advanced too quickly in greeting towards him. In puppy class Sheldon caught on very quickly to exercises but still watched the other pups during playtimes from a quiet corner or his favourite hiding place; a tunnel.

This class was my first introduction to clicker training. I found the process of marking behaviours and rewarding them fascinating. From there my job evolved when the owner of the company saw my aptitude for training and invited me to apprentice before having me teach classes.

I worked Sheldon through his reactivity and watched him blossom into a more confident dog. Eventually my classes evolved into me working reactive dogs as well as working across Ontario with a trick dog show. Sheldons training advanced and he became my demo dog! He was great in classes and even started to demo in the Growly dog class, showing soft body language and helping other anxious dogs overcome their fear.

Sheldon has really been my learning dog. My first of firsts; first reactive boy as well as my first dog to start clicker training with. I am excited with how far we have come and how far we will still go.

I hope you all enjoyed Sheldon’s Story 🙂 Kingstons story will be up in this next week but before that I want to talk about my latest Rally-O Trial at The Poodle Farm. Stay tuned!