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    Never Keep Boundaries between your kids and your dog

    Never Keep Boundaries between your kids and your dog

    “My fondest memory of my three dogs is when Oreo’s puppies were born. It was a special time as I was eight months pregnant myself and there I was, delivering Oreo’s babies. That moment is truly memorable for me as all sorts of emotions were flowing. My husband would laugh and say that if anyone wants to get pregnant, this is a good karma house to come to.  

    Oreo was a gift to us by our friends who are huge dog lovers just like us. Oreo sleeps with us on our bed since Day 1, (our kids don't!). My kids and my dogs share a great bond together. My first-born has grown up with Oreo and her puppies and now they are a little feisty with him as they think of him as an equal. On the other hand, with my younger child, they are ever so gentle.

    One thing that I remember from when my kids were born is that I never kept any boundaries between them and my dogs. Even as newborns, my dogs would walk into the kids’ room and things went as normal as it could be.

    I feel that Oreo knew that I was pregnant even before I did. And it seems pretty naturally biologically, if you see, as animals don’t rely on any gynaecologists or ultrasound specialists. Their senses are much stronger and somehow they know such things.

    My advice to all mothers out there is that if you’re nervous about introducing your baby and your Dog, then you must know that Dogs are highly intelligent and emotional animals. They are an equipment of an older sibling, so they know that there’s competition coming in. The only way you can ease the competition is to never have any barriers created. Keep it totally open, kids will be fine. It’s good for your sanity to be chilled out. And you have more to worry about the effects of air pollution on your baby than anything else. I raised my kids with my three Dogs since the very beginning and they all turned out fine”.

    -- Roshni Nadar, CEO, HCL Technologies. 

    How does my dog learn?

    How does my dog learn?

    Ever wondered how Fido learns all the commands so quickly? Well here may be a set of answers for a change!

    Whatever Fido learns, is always linked with a set of associations. There are two ways in which a dog associates behaviors and learns – classical conditioning and operant conditioning. Classical conditioning means ‘pairing an unconditional stimulus to a particular response.’ For example, the dog knows when the leash is out, its time for a walk. This is because he has paired the act of ‘going out’ to the ‘leash’. He is classically conditioned to go out when the leash is out. Another classic example is that of the relationship of our dogs with food! As soon as the bowl of food comes out, you might see your dog drool. Here, he has paired the bowl of food to tasty chicken and rice that he loves the most, hence, forcing the mouth to salivate.

    On the other hand, ‘operant conditioning’, also called ‘stimulus-response training’ simply means to pair a stimulus (a command), to a naturally occurring act. For example, when we teach a dog a ‘sit’ command, we pair a naturally occurring behavior, in this case, putting the rear end down, with a sound (the ‘sit’ command). In operant conditioning,, the response to an act can be controlled by the handler, where as in classical conditioning happens automatically, rather, naturally.

    There are many types of learning methods that are mixed and matched, used by trainers and behaviorists around the globe. Here are a few:

    Guided Learning: Just like the name suggests, the dog is physically guided to do a particular act. For example, pushing the dog’s rear end onto the ground to teach him the ‘sit’ command. This is also one of the methods used in agility training, where the handler physically takes the dog on the lead and show what is to be done next.

    dog training

     

    Observational Learning: A lot of puppies gradually learn their toileting habbits by looking at an adult dog, just by observing the act. A lot of behaviors are also learnt by pups observing the owner’s reaction to particular things, such as getting scared of a particular sound or being playful and happy in a particular area.

    Trial and Error: Dogs experiment quite a lot of things in their growing years. For example, attention seeking behavior. Dogs being social animals love the attention of their owners, so they start experimenting behaviors that lead to personal rewards. Yes, that ‘puppy face’ your dog makes is also an experiment and of course we all fall for it! If ignored, they will try a new behavior and try everything possible that works.

    Shaping: Shaping is used by a lot of animal behaviorists for training most animals, including, whales, dolphins, even cows, and is a personal favorite, as it forces the dog to think! It can be defines as ‘successful approximations to an end goal’. Also known as clicker training, which is widely used in the USA. The dog is rewarded for any behavior that loosely approximate to the end result. For example, while teaching a dog to jump through a loop, we would click and reward the act of even looking through the loop for starters!

    So here you go, start clicking already! Let’s see what your Fido learns next.

    10 Things Every Golden Retriever Pet Parent Will Relate To

    10 Things Every Golden Retriever Pet Parent Will Relate To

    Your golden fur ball is full of mischief and fun. Their sweet, loving temperament exudes beauty and grace. And there's never a dull moment when you have a golden by your side. Here are ten things that are SO Golden Retriever!

    1. They will Demand your attention

    “Whatever it is that you’re doing, you must pet me!”

    pet me

           2. They will take over your furniture

    “Oh, you want to sit here? Ummm, No!” :)

    dogprooffurniture

         3. They will eat just about ANYTHING!!!

    And we're not just talking about food...shoes, newspaper, crayons...and anything else that they can get their paws on! 

    chewing

       

         4. They're extremely gentle and patient with puppies and bond best with kids!

    "Bro, mom is sooooo going to freak out when we get home!"

    play_with_dog

        5. It seems like they are born to just cuddle.

    "Why would you need a pillow when you have ME?!!!"

    two-golden-laying-on-couch

         6. Golden Puppies are the CUTEST! 

     "I'm a cutie and I know it!"

    golden-retriever-puppy-smiling-wallpaper-2

        7. Goldens love the outdoors!

    They're excellent hunters, love sports and are trekking, hiking and camping buddies. With their strong retriever instincts, they love to fetch! 

    golden-retriever-437780_1280

        8. Goldens can be trained easily.

    Although they are mischievous around food, they can easily learn to restrain themselves, if trained so.

    "I can totally do this....Yup!"

    golden

        9. Living with golden fur everywhere becomes your reality!

    A bunch of golden fur flying around the house, a layer of that golden hair on your furniture and clothes? We like to call them magical golden fur! 

    "Chillax, it can all be managed!"

    brushinggolden

        10. Whether you're gone for 20 minutes or the entire day, you know you're going to be welcomed with that golden smile always!

    "You're back! Now it's playtime!"

    greeting

    Tips to Have a Furrtastic Spring Time

    Tips to Have a Furrtastic Spring Time

    As the days get longer, birds get chirpier and we start to put away our winter clothing; it is time to gear up for some outdoorsy fun with your pet. Beeecaaauuuseee spring season is here to fill up your calendar with loads of outdoor fun with your pet.

    So here are some handy tips so that your pet and you can enjoy the spring season: 

    • Splash of Water Fun 

    water splash

    Dogs love water and love to swim. Head over to the beach or the pool for some fun-filled water games. Your dog will love to splash in the water and will certainly enjoy the much-needed soak. You can find loads of aqua dog toys to keep your dog entertained for hours! Water retrieval games are loads of fun so throw a ball into the pool and let your pooch jump and catch it! Make sure you carry loads of fresh drinking water, fresh towels for your dog when you’re at the beach.

     

     

    • Take a hike – Literally! 

    take a hike

    Shed that winter weight with a hike around your city. If you have a park or a hiking place around you, it will be a great place to get some exercise and bond with your dog. Make sure that you look for a hiking place that is easy on the paws and does not have a rough uneven terrain. A dog harness is the right gear for your dog when you take him out on a hike. Keep treats, drinking water, travel bowl and a towel.

     

    • Organise a Play Date!

    play date

    Play dates are a great way to socialize your pup. Plan a play date with your other doggie friends or attend events organized from time to time. Make sure you have loads of fun and ensure that it is supervised at all times. It is a great way to teach your dog bite inhibition and make him comfortable with other dogs.

     

    • Go on a long drive

    Long Drive

    It is finally time to roll down the car windows and let your dog enjoy the fresh breeze with her ears flapping, tails wagging and tongue out. Plan a weekend getaway or a long drive with your four-legged-companion and let the fun begin! 

    Spring Health Tips for Dogs

    While you plan all these outdoor trips with your dog, there are a few health related things that you should bear in mind:

    • Beware of mosquitoes, ticks and fleas – Mosquitoes become active during the spring season and can easily transmit heartworm diseases. Ticks and fleas are also common during this season. Make sure you have your dog vaccinated with a heartworm preventative medicine and regularly deworm your dog. You can use tick collars to tackle ticks and fleas.
    • Clean those paws – Spring time will bring loads of rain showers and mud which means that your dog will be bringing tons of mud inside the house. Clean your dog’s paws with paw wipes after an outdoor session to keep your dog healthy and tidy.
    • Keep your dog away from toxic plants – Spring time brings loads of flowers blooming. There are certain plants that you should keep away from your dog. Tulips, Daffodils, Hyacinth and certain lilies are toxic for dogs. Household fertilizers are also harmful for dogs so make sure it is out of your dog’s reach whenever he is outdoors.
    • Kennel Cough – Keep your dog vaccinated to help protect him from catching kennel cough while he is outdoors meeting other dogs. It is a good practice to keep your dog’s vaccinations up-to-date all year around.