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The Dog Training Command That Could Save Your Dog’s Life

Some dogs naturally stay close to home, but others try to bolt out the door at the first chance they get. Either way, on the occasion that your dog does leave your yard without you, it can be a time of panic. Your mind may race and wonder what to do next.

There are things you can do to prepare ahead of time for this type of situation, like strengthening your “come” command or having a squeaky toy or treats near the door.  A strong “come” command is one of the best foundational dog training commands you need for a variety of reasons, but there is one lesser known command that could actually save your dog’s life. “HOME”.

Why “HOME”?  Simply put, if your dog is not in your yard/home, what is one of the most common things someone will say to try to get your dog back home? GO HOME!  And that makes perfect sense, but unless you have taught your dog what home is, it’s like speaking a foreign language.  Your dog may be able to find his or her way home anyway, but the command (even if from a stranger) could break your dog’s panic and give it clear direction of what to do next.

Just like the other commands your dog knows, our goal is to associate a behavior or object with a word.  Our goal here is to help your dog identify the word HOME with the physical building you live in (house, apartment building, etc).

Here’s how to teach the HOME command:

  • Every time you approach your home while on a walk with your dog, even if it’s from across the yard or just coming from your neighbor’s house, say “let’s go home”, and excitedly walk towards your home. Say “YES! We’re home!” when you arrive at your house. (tip: you can also say “we’re home!” as you approach in the car to reinforce what being home means and that this is a really good thing).
  • After doing this consistently for about a week, start to say “let’s go home” as you approach your home from a bit further away. See if your dog seems to recognize what you mean and join in the excitement you’ve built about going home, while still maintaining manners.
  • Once your dog clearly understands what home is, you can make it a fun game and start taking different routes when out on a walk. You can even test them a little bit and say “let’s go HOME” from further away. Can your dog guide you home?!

As with all training, consistency and repetition is the key. If you have any question we’d be happy to answer them for you.  Just email Racine@Pet-U.net or visit Pet-U.net for more information on our individual and class training options.

Inside Information: Beating Your Dog’s Cabin Fever

Stuck inside and feeling bored?  We’re facing the coldest days of the year here in Wisconsin and it’s hard to want to take your dog outside to exercise. And even if you do get out, after just a few minutes you may find your dog running back to the comfort of his or her warm bed.  However, there comes a time when most dogs get sick of just sitting around and start to get cabin fever.  Here are a few things you can do to exercise your dog’s mind and body:

  • Back in May we published a list of 4 Class Kids Games to Play With Your Dog, including doggy basketball, hide ‘n seek and more. Each of these ideas can be done inside to keep your dog entertained.
  • If your dog is well trained around other dogs and people, find a store where dogs are allowed to shop along with you, such as PetSmart, Petco, Pet Supplies Plus or another local store geared towards pets. Just a quick errand like this can do wonders for your dog. The smells, sights and sounds of a store like this is very stimulating to your dog’s senses.
  • Teach your dog a new trick. Use positive reinforcement and take baby steps towards your goal. Do not try to get your dog to learn the whole trick at once. Eventually you can link all the pieces together and show off your new trick! Check out all the useful tricks this dog can do!
  • If you find yourself short on time to play with your dog, doggy daycare can be a good option. Even once a week during these winter months, doggy daycare can give your dog an outlet of energy and the opportunity to play with other dogs.
  • If you are a person who needs structure in order to stick to a plan, signing up for a dog training class can help you carve out time training your dog, and also give you ideas for fun games and training techniques you can do at.

It’s still important to get your dog some fresh air each day, just don’t stay out too long. Here’s an idea one of our clients shared “we shovel out a circular path in the snow so our dog can run around it like a race track!” This or a quick walk to the mailbox can help break up the long day inside for your dog.

When dogs get too little exercise – physical, mental or both – for prolonged periods of time their behavior can suffer. Dogs who don’t usually chew can start to find inappropriate things to chew on, for example, because they are trying to get out some of their energy. We hope these ideas will help put you on the right track to keeping your pup happy and balanced in the coming weeks. If you have any questions, please let us know!

PetU is a family-owned, K9 Higher Education facility that offers dog training, daycare, boarding grooming and a campus store – all with education at the core. We provide a solid foundation of training, socialization and nutrition to help dogs and their owners be the best team they can be.

PetU Glendale: There’s a New Dog in Town!

With two campuses located in Racine and Milwaukee, Pet University (otherwise known as PetU) is not new to the Milwaukee area, and we are thrilled to have recently opened our 3rd campus – PetU Glendale. The newest PetU is located at 727 W. Glendale Avenue Suite 600 near the Sprecher Brewery.  We are open for business — if you’re in the area, stop in! Follow our new signs on Glendale Ave and you’ll find us.

Like PetU Milwaukee and PetU Racine, the Glendale location will be offering doggy daycare, dog training classes, dog boarding and spa bath services.

PetU is making many updates to the Glendale campus:

  • 10 individual boarding suites
  • Brightening up the space with new paint on all walls
  • A front end makeover to create a welcoming space
  • New spa bath tub with a new line of shampoos
  • All Poochfessors are trained to reinforce basic manners throughout the day
  • And much more…

You’re invited! We welcome you to attend our Grand Opening party on Saturday, December 10 from 12-3pm.  If you are out shopping at Bay Shore or other local businesses please stop in to meet the staff and check out the newly renovated facility. At the Grand Opening we’ll have giveaways for doggy daycare and other special offers, along with delicious cake to celebrate.  Kids are welcome, and while we’d love to meet your dog in the near future, we’ve learned it is best to focus on people at our Grand Openings so we can thoroughly answer all of your questions.

New to PetU? Here’s what makes us different: Training is at the heart of everything we do.

Our Mission: PetU is a family-owned, K9 Higher Education facility that offers dog training, daycare, boarding grooming and a campus store – all with education at the core.

We provide a solid foundation of training, socialization and nutrition to help dogs and their owners be the best team they can be.

Our knowledgeable, courteous staff embrace a commitment to excellence in K9 Education. We take price in maintaining a safe, healthy, clean and FUN environement.

To read more about the services offered across PetU locations, please click here:

Dog Daycare

Dog Training

Dog Boarding

Dog Grooming

 

New Specialty Training Courses at PetU Starting Monday 1/4!

The PetU crew is excited to announce that on Monday, January 4th, we will be offering several new specialty classes to further strengthen your bond as a training team! Here’s your chance to try out some specialty courses including Tricks, Disc Dog, Agility, Nose Work, Reactive Dog and Therapy Dog Training.

Choose from the following training classes for your dog:

Pet U - Dog Raising PawTricks 101:
Remember when your uncle showed you his dog’s amazing tricks at your family’s Christmas gatherings? Have you ever wondered how he taught his dog to do that? If so, this is the ideal course for you! This is an entry-level course, which will teach the basic fundamentals of trick training. Take this course, and make your dog the highlight of your next family gathering!

Disc Dog 101:
Fetch, boy! Anyone who has owned a dog has played fetch with either a frisbee or a ball. This course has been designed to take a classic game to the next level…you will learn the correct way to throw a disc, and some new tricks to make this game even more fun and exciting for you and your dog!

Agility 101:
Get your dog in top physical shape, while also training his or her brain. You’ll find PetU’s new agility course both demanding, and rewarding.

Nose Work 101:
Build your dog’s focus and awareness with PetU’s K9 Nose Work 101 course – inspired by working detection dogs. This course will work on your dog’s mental and physical awareness. Your dog will be tested using his or her favorite toy, or treat, and learn to use his or her senses to the best of their ability. Using fun and exciting methods, your pup will learn the true ways of the K9.

Reactive Dog 101:
This course will begin to identify, address, and solve any problems that may be occurring on leash. We will determine the root of your dog’s aggression when in a public setting – whether it be anxiety or nervousness – and find proactive solutions, making walking your dog a more enjoyable experience!

Therapy Dog Training:
Therapy Dog Test Prep and maintenance classes help you and your dog prepare for animal-assisted activity commonly known as pet therapy. These classes are designed to give you the necessary tools and skills required to be able to take your dog in to care facilities. Precise obedience performance isn’t required, however you must have control of your dog while visiting, including a reliable sit, down and stay. This course is designed with two phases – an obedience and socialization phase, and an onsite facility training phase.

All of these fun and exciting new courses will be available starting January 4th at PetU Racine. We also continue to offer our Puppy S.T.A.R and Associates courses. Our next class session beginning on January 7th.

Call 262-619-0109 today to register!