General Pet Guide
Dogs, like people live in groups and conform to the behaviors which are allowed and/or suit their needs. It is up to the owner to be the "Alpha dog" or group leader and teach your dog what is and isn't acceptable. Please note, that puppies are as fragile as human babies! You must not harshly correct your puppy the first few months that you have them. Redirect any unwanted behaviors and don't scream or physically correct your puppy. They must learn to love and completely trust you before you can really train them well. Puppies have high metabolism, tiny bladders and brains that can't easily make the connection between where exactly to potty and when. BE PATIENT. THEY WILL LEARN WITH CONSISTENCY AND PATIENCE
Make a schedule for your dog's bathroom breaks and stick with it. The key to potty training is not to have accidents happen in the first place, and taking your dog out regularly can help with that. Even if your dog does not ask to go outside, take them out and praise them like crazy if they use the bathroom outside.
Pet Training Guides
Praise, praise praise. When your puppy goes potty outside/on pad be sure to PRAISE it! When you call your puppy, use a "happy" voice and praise it! Never call a puppy and then punish it. You will only teach them that being with you means fear or pain.
Play with your dog EVERYDAY. Walks, fetch, tug of war. Daily attention will help stave off bad habits.
Do's and Don'ts
Don't scare or spank your new puppy. Make sure it has completely bonded with you and is very brave in it's new environment before you ever try correct unwanted behavior. The only exception is if your puppy nips, chews hard on or bites a person, you can do an immediate lip pinch, similar to the mother dogs nips and say "no". Biting or nipping a person is the only time you should strongly correct a puppy. Be sure to then give the pup an acceptable alternative like a rawhide or toy that it can chew on.
Make them Behave
Occasional puppy approved treats are great for teaching a dog to come to you when you call it. Don't use treats every time and always use lots of praise too, in a positive tone. Basic commands such as stay and sit can be started as early as 10 weeks. But don't expect a puppy to stay in place for more then a few seconds at a time. As they age, 20 seconds then more. By a year they should be able to stay in place for several minutes. Patience, praise and consistency is key! Clap your hands at unwanted behavior using the word no firmly. If chewing inappropriate items, redirect your puppy toward a toy that it can chew on. Consistency and praise are key. Dog training courses are taught at many pet product stores or at local dog clubs.
4-H youth programs are available in every state and most have dog training programs for kids 9 to 18! Contact your county extension service for more information. It's a great program for kids!
Healthy Recipes for Pets
Dogs should have access to cool, clean water at all times. There are a few exceptions like overnight while puppy training or before surgery. A little bit of grain is okay in the diet, but dog food should be primarily made of meat proteins. Avoid generic foods and those made with products from overseas. National brands made in the USA are some of the best in the world, unless you make your own dog food.
Large raw hides and large bones that won't splinter availble at pet stores make great chews for your doggie's down time.
Store Pet Foods
National brands based in the USA offer many great foods for dogs. Avoid overly cheap or generic foods. These may contain too much indigestible fiber and low quality proteins which cause large quantities of stool and won't have the nutrition your pet needs. Dog food should have mostly meat first and then little grains or vegetables. Consult your veterinarian for further guidance.
Lean ground beef, chicken, lamb, eggs and rice can make great meals if you like to make your own food. Avoid giving your dog any bones, grease or fat, dairy products and sugar. Chocolate can cause liver damage in dogs. Keep it away!
Home Made Treats
Cooked beef or chicken liver with a dash of garlic powder make excellent treats for most dogs. Once cooked and cooled, it can be cut up in small bite sized portions and then frozen in bags or containers. Use these sparingly as too much can cause gastrointestinal upset.
Dog cookies can also be made using 1 pound cooked and drained ground beef, 3 cups oat flour , 1/2 cup broth and 2 eggs and a dash of salt. Make a thick paste which can then be formed into small "cookie or bone" shapes and baked at 350`for 15 minutes. Let cool and dry before storing.
Optional ingredients include chopped cooked bacon, cheese, chicken and you can use regular or wheat flour if your dog doesn't have an allergy. Check with your veterinarian if any diet problems occur.