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  1. Halloween tips and tricks blog

    Halloween can be a fun and exciting time of year however there are a few cautions you should take to avoid adding unnecessary stress for your dog. Here are a few helpful tips and tricks:

    1. Trick or treaters: If you live in an area with lots of children you’re very likely to get a number of scary little trick or treaters at your door. The costumes may not be that scary to us however for some dogs all the weird shapes and dangling bits can be frightening, it’s best to keep them out of the way if you know your dog is going to react to someone being at the door. Keep them away in another room with some mental stimulation like a kong or puzzle game to allow smooth running when answering the door.
    2. Dog costumes: Some dogs love all the costumes and are happy to be dressed up themselves! Just remember to be careful of the costume you pick, ensure there’s enough room for your dog to move around freely and nothing it too tight. You may think your dog looks adorable in their little costume but watch their body language to see how they feel about it, some adjustments may need to be made like taking off hoods which reduce the dogs sight or little buttons that could be swallowed. Lighter coloured costumes or reflective collars or strips will help you keep a better eye on your dog and allow other people to easily see them too. Dog’s which won’t tolerate full costumes may enjoy a simple bandana or bow tie, get creative!
    3. Trick or treating with your dog: It goes without saying that if you are going to take your dog trick or treating they will need to be well socialised so they’re polite to whoever is answering the door. If your dog is a little on the nervous side they might feel more comfortable staying in however if you do need to take them out during Halloween allow them to explore all the decorations at their own pace. Pumpkins with candles, statues, bunting and other decorations can all look very frightening in dim lighting to your dog and they may spook easily.
    4. Candy: There is going to be lots of candy wrappers and sweets around on Halloween which could easily be picked up and swallowed by your dog which can be very harmful to them. Make sure you have the number of your vet ready for emergencies and keep an eye on what your dog is doing.
    5. Walks: Plan your evening walk beforehand, most dogs would prefer to enjoy a nice evening walk before all the commotion starts.halloween
  2. IMG_0064

    What is puppy socialisation?

     

    Puppy socialisation in basic terms means introduction your new puppy to a variety of different things, this can be other dogs, people, animals and situations. The socialisation process should involve your puppy having many pleasant experiences with new encounters.

    Why is it important to socialise your puppy?

     

    It is important for the development of your puppy for them to encounter many new situations as this will help lead to owning a well rounded happy adult dog. The experiences your dog has in the first few years of its’ life will help to structure their temperament and personality in their adult years, so it is important to keep each new experience a positive one so that they do not start to fear any particular situation.

    When should you start socialising your puppy?

     

    Normally puppies leave their mothers at 6-8weeks old, this is the perfect time to start socialising them. It’s easy to start socialising your puppy with new people, allow them to greet friends, family and other people on walks or out and about. Always allow your puppy to greet new people in their own time and not to force them to go near strangers as this can scare them, ask people to couch down to the puppy level so that they do not scare them.

    When introducing your puppy to other dogs you should monitor how they greet new dogs and their play. Most other dogs will give puppies signals for what is and isn’t okay when meeting them and during play however some dogs will be very tolerant. Think about how you want your dog to act as an adult dog as if they play very excited and physically as a puppy they will learn to expect to be able to play like this in their adult years too.

    Puppies under 12 weeks of age will be more outgoing and may not seem to fear many situations they’re faced with. After 12 weeks of age their brains are far more developed and new situations may now be approached with caution. It is important to continue to socialise your dog throughout it entire life by taking them out and about and allowing them to greet other animals and people.

    What we do at Noah’s Ark Dog Day School

     

    Here at Noah’s Ark we encourage puppy socialisation by offering a free day in school for puppies under 6 months of age. During their time here, our staff members will monitor their play and teach them appropriate play behaviours and how to listen to other dogs’ signals. We allow all our dog to mix together of all ages, breeds and sizes, this is important to ensure your puppy does not become fearful towards any certain group of dogs. We will also watch the signals your puppies showing and allow them breaks from play and the group if they need and make their time here a very positive experience.