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8 Dog Park Safety Tips

Taking your dog to the dog park can be an enjoyable outing for both of you. However, there are some important safety tips you’ll need to follow, especially if you are newer to visiting the dog park.

Prep Your Pup

The first thing to consider before visiting the dog park is whether your dog is ready. Make sure your dog can follow commands in a distracting environment. If your dog seems to struggle with this, taking a group training class before venturing to the park may be beneficial. 

Leave the Toys at Home

This may seem counterintuitive – aren’t you going to the dog park to play? – but it is usually better to leave the dog toys at home. Dogs sometimes get very territorial about their toys and you don’t want to have an issue with another dog over a favorite toy. If you really feel like you should bring something, do not bring favorite toys and bring multiples to share if you can.

Time Your First Visit Strategically

If it is your first visit to the dog park, try and go during a non-peak time. Let your pup get used to the surroundings without a bunch of other dogs around. Usually early in the morning, later in the evening, or during a weekday when others may be at work are the best times to visit. 

Watch Your Dog for Warnings

Be sure to watch for warning signs that they are stressed or uncomfortable – and keep your eye on any other dogs as well. If you see any other dogs exhibiting non-desirable behaviors, or your dog is acting up, be ready to head home.

Limit Your Visit

Don’t plan on spending all day at the dog park. While a 30-60 minute visit is fun, spending too much time at the dog park can be overwhelming for your dog, which may bring out undesirable behaviors. 

Don’t Get Distracted

No matter how many times you’ve visited the dog park, there are likely to be new dogs and unique situations every time you go. If you are distracted by your phone, a book, or another person – you may be too late to stop an unfortunate situation with your dog. Make sure you are keeping watch on your dog at all times.

Consider a Membership Dog Park

If there is only a public dog park in your area, that is probably better than nothing. However, the ones that require a membership or entrance fee will likely be cleaner. Additionally, these parks sometimes require vaccination records, which can give you some peace of mind.

Clean up After Your Dog & Yourself.

No matter what kind of park you visit, be sure to clean up after your dog as well as yourself. If everyone does their part, your dog park will be a much nicer place for all. 

Contact Argos Dog Training

Enjoy your visit to the dog park! Dog socialization is an important aspect of dog ownership and a dog park is a great place to give your pup everything he or she needs to be happy and healthy. If after your visit to the dog park, you realize that your dog has some behavior issues that need to be addressed, contact Argos Dog Training for private or group sessions. We’ll be glad to help! Fill out an online form or give us a call at 617-302-7467


How are Private Training Sessions Beneficial For Your Dog?

Training a new pup can be an overwhelming and time-consuming venture. Luckily – dog classes and training can help make the process easier, especially if this is your first time. But for many families, committing to weeks of classes can be impossible. Private training sessions, even though they are more expensive, maybe the solution. There are several advantages to private training sessions for both you and your dog that make the cost worth it. 

Flexibility in Scheduling

If you have a hectic schedule, it may seem like there isn’t time to join a more traditional training class. However, private trainers may be able to offer a bit more flexibility if your schedule requires it. 

Sometimes, timing isn’t necessarily the issue, but traveling to a lesson, waiting there, and traveling home can create a burden for your family. Since many private trainers will come to your home instead, it can free up other members of your family to tackle other things while one pet caregiver attends the session with the trainer. 

Health Considerations

Private training lessons can be incredibly beneficial if you or your pet has significant health issues. If an owner has restricted mobility or any other health problems that might make it difficult or impossible to attend a training session, travel to and from that session, or participate within the session itself. Private lessons in this scenario have an additional benefit in that the trainer can also suggest any modifications to the home that the owner can do to make managing their dog’s behavior easier. 

Specific Learning Styles

If you’ve tried a class before and struggled to remember and implement what you learned, it may have been a difference in learning style. While you could keep trying different group classes, hoping something will stick, it may be easier and less expensive to spring for private lessons. A private trainer can modify his or her approach to what works best for you and your pet. 

Custom Training Program

When you hire a private trainer, they will develop a personalized program for you and your dog. The trainer can tailor the training and expectations of progress to you and your dog specifically. For example, maybe you’ve already trained your dog to sit and fetch, but what you really need is help to get him or her to greet guests without jumping on them or to bark less when someone knocks on the door. A private trainer will be able to assess your individual situation and build appropriate lesson plans and timelines for your unique situation. 

Sign up for Private Sessions at Argos Dog Training

There are many advantages to private training for both you and your dog. Unless you specifically need help socializing your pup, there are few things you can’t get from private lessons that you could from a group class. When you factor in convenience and customization, the benefits far outweigh the added cost. We offer private one-on-one dog training sessions at Argos Dog Training in Boston. Get in contact with us today to learn more and sign up! 


Tips to Prepare Your Dog for Normal Life After Quarantine

Most of our daily lives have been interrupted drastically as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, creating new routines and a new sense of “normal” for us. While this may have been difficult for some of us to adjust to, it’s equally as important to think about how it’s affected our pets. A lot of pets love the extra company, even though they’re not used to having you around all the time. However, it’s important to keep in mind that it won’t last forever, and your dog needs to be prepared for when the time comes that you return to your normal schedule. As stay-at-home orders are lifting across the country, and the plan for Massachusetts to reopen has been announced, it’s time to start getting your pet used to you not being around 24/7. Here are some tips that you can follow for the adjustment period. 

Take Time Apart

Beginning to decrease the time that you’re spending with your dog is crucial before you have to return to your schedule completely. You can start with small increments, even of 15 or 20 minutes. Working in these intervals will get your dog comfortable being alone again, while you reinforce the idea to him that you’ll be coming back. This is especially important for dogs who suffer from separation anxiety. Additionally, you’ll want to cut back on being overly affectionate with your dog, so they don’t become dependent on you. 

Provide Your Dog With Distractions

When you do leave your dog, even if it’s just for short periods of time at first, you’ll want to make sure he’s not bored. Boredom combined with separation anxiety can be a disaster for any dog. If you leave your dog with chew toys or puzzle toys, this will typically keep them occupied while they’re alone. 

Crate Training

This is especially important if you adopted or bought a new puppy during the quarantine. Getting him used to being in the crate, for however long he will be once you return to normal life, is essential. Just like with the alone time, you can easy into it. If you’re going to be returning to 8 hour work days soon, start off by training him for a few hours a day in the crate. You can then work your way up to full 8 hour days with him. 

Sign up for Dog Training & Structured Daycare Programs

If you’ll be returning to your normal routine soon and are worried about how your pet will adjust, it may be helpful to bring in a professional trainer. At Argos Dog Training, we offer structured daycare programs that will keep your dog occupied while you’re at work, and also give him the opportunity to learn important new skills and commands. Interested in learning more? Get in contact with us today! Fill out an online form or give us a call at 617-302-7467 to set up a consultation and we’ll help determine the best solution for your dog! 


Tips to Properly Socialize Your Puppy

Teaching your puppy to socialize with other animals and humans from a young age is crucial for both his happiness and safety, as well as those around him. A puppy that doesn’t know how to properly socialize can often feel anxious around new people or pets, causing him to act in undesired ways such as barking, jumping, and showing aggression

If you don’t know where to start with socializing your puppy, we’ve got you covered! Here are some tips from the experts to make sure that your dog is both well-trained and socialized.

Start By Realizing Why It Matters 

A socialized dog is a safe, friendly, well-behaved dog. Dogs have innate protection instincts that trigger when they’re confronted with anything they believe is strange. Familiarizing them early on with a variety of other breeds will help them feel more comfortable—and more safe, and therefore calmer—as an adult. 

Make a Commitment

Socializing your puppy won’t happen on its own! If you’ve realized that this needs to be a priority, find ways to do it, such as attending puppy meetups and visiting dog parks. Then, put it on your calendar—often—and don’t let yourself cancel. 

Familiarize Yourself with Your Dog’s Body Language 

The point of socializing is to manage your dog’s inherent triggers. He’s going to be stressed when you first start, so bring treats and prepare to be a calming influence on him. If your dog is letting you know through tensed-up muscles and frequent barking or growling that it’s too much for him, know when it’s time to take a break and try again in a few days. 

Sign Up For a Puppy Training Class

This comes with two distinct benefits! The younger your dog is, the easier it will be to train them—so working with professionals to ensure your dog knows how to sit, stay, and heel will be a lifelong investment that pays off more if you begin very early. Secondly, puppy classes usually are taught in midsize groups of dogs and owners with several professional dog tutors helping keep order—which means your dog will have a safe space in which to learn how to play nicely with other dogs while keeping his main focus on you! 

Key Takeaways

Dogs are complex creatures. They love, they grow, and they learn. That said, all dog owners need to forget the old adage “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” Regardless of your dog’s age, they are able to learn new things, especially if you take them to one of the best puppy training classes around. At Argos Dog Training, we offer a variety of dog training courses in Boston including group sessions, private training, and beyond. Give us a call at 617-302-7467 or fill out an online form and we’ll have your pup enrolled in no time! 


What to Do If Your Dog Wakes Up Too Early

For many people, sleeping through the night can be difficult as is it, especially if you’re already basing your sleep schedule around children and then add a barking dog into the mix too. It’s important to ensure that you establish a healthy and consistent sleep-wake schedule for your pup, so that you both can get a restful night’s sleep!  Teach your dog to wait until you say it’s time with the following tips and tricks.

Consider his Health

First, you’ll want to make sure that your pet isn’t waking up too early because of an underlying medical condition. Dogs have very few ways to let us know that something is wrong, and being awake when no one else is might just be the only method of sounding alarm your dog has! Talk with your vet to make sure your dog is healthy before trying other options.

Get Plenty of Exercise

If your dog isn’t sleeping through the night, try to tire him out completely the evening before. If he’s exhausted enough, his body will naturally require a full night’s sleep to recharge. Try taking him for additional walks, playing fetch, or letting him run around the yard for a few laps.

Use the Bathroom

Let your dog out for his last bathroom opportunity later in the evening. Especially if your dog is younger, he might not have the capacity to last for hours and hours during the night—so, the later you let him out, the longer you’ll naturally have to sleep in. 

Remove the Triggers

Reduce the triggers for wakefulness around your dog’s crate. It’s simple- if your dog doesn’t wake up, he won’t wake you up! Adding in a white noise machine, a crate cover, or a baby gate if he’s not crated to restrict his movement will help him understand that bothering you isn’t an option. 

If all else fails, work incrementally to train him to wake up later. Figure out what his stimuli are, or set a new stimulus (such as the sound of your alarm clock) around when he usually wakes up. Then, move that stimulus later by five minutes every few days, and refuse to get up a second earlier! 

A Dog Trainer Can Help

If you need assistance training your dog, not only with sleeping but everything else — then give us a call! Our trainers at Argos Dog Training use effective techniques to teach your dog proper behaviors, skills, and beyond. Check out our list of dog training courses, including group classes, private sessions, and more in Boston MA. Fill out an online form to request a consultation or give us a call today at 617-302-7467!

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