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  • Discover How To Train Your Dog and Help Her Become a Better Pet

    f_21310739954_100.jpgTraining your dog will help him to be a more obedient animal. It will also help him to be a better pet. The time that you spend investing in this training will reward you for many years. Your pet will be closer to you and will respect you even more. And, it doesn


  • Dogs: Man

    f_11310739249_tigers21.jpgWhile Americans are at home treating their dogs as part of the family, in some portions of the world, dogs are caged, beat, killed and cooked. Are they made to be both pets and menus?

    In some countries like Korea, the Philippines and Vietnam, dog meat eating is common. Opposite to what is happening in the western. They are being pampered and even trained. History tells that eating of dog meat was most common in Korea. The older generation ate dog meat due to different reasons: improving virility, cure for summer heat, cure for some illness, and recovery aid after an illness and improving good skin for women.

    According to the International Fund for Animal Welfare, therapeutic claims about eating dog meat are all folklore and it has really no truth. Until now, there are no scientific evidences which prove all of these. If the reason of those who eat dog meat is achieving the mentioned reasons by the Koreans, the IFAW discourages them to continue that belief.

    In the past, restaurants fabricated stories stating the benefits derived from eating dog meat. These caused people to believe such hearsay and it went on even until the modern days.

    There are different means of killing a dog and many critics find it as an act beyond being humane. Some are caught, caged, hung, and boiled. Some are even beaten so hard that too much pain is being inflicted to the animal. However it is not realized by many that food dogs are not pets and they have no names. They are bred in farms, just like pigs, beefs, lambs, chicken and other animals. They are probably bred in cages, which may be cruel but is common in farms anywhere in the world. They are put down “humanely” just like any other animal used for food, usually by slitting the throat and bleeding the animal until it passes out.

    The emotional pinch upon hearing dogs being butchered is because people have been domesticating it and they have been receiving the


  • The Joy Of Having A Cat As A Pet

    f_11310739337_brown-labrador-12.jpgIn this article, I write about the pleasures of having a cat as a pet. It took quite a long time for my wife to persuade me into letting her have a cat, but we now have three. I would certainly recommend other people to give a cat a home as they are no trouble at all and add lots of value and love to the household.

    Looking back I am not really sure why I was so against having a cat as a pet. It was not for the financial reasons of buying the cat food as it is not exactly expensive. I suppose I thought that they would ruin some of the furniture or may even pooh and wee on the floor. This has not been the case and thinking about it, I was being rather stupid, as you no doubt agree.

    This is the daily schedule of our three cats. They wake up in the dining room which is now basically the cats room. They are then fed and eat their breakfast. In this dining or cats room, we have put litter trays down for them, but it is very rare that they use them. The cats then go out of the house for a while and a little bit later can usually be seen sunbathing in the garden, that is if the weather is good of course.

    At around twelve midday the cats then come in for some lunch, yet more cat food. I often wonder how they do not get bored eating the same type of food, day in, day out. They will then sleep somewhere around the house for the next few hours before asking to be let out to do their business.

    At around 5pm they have some more food and then decide to become a little more sociable. They would then normally join the family in the main living room and curl up to sleep some more, normally on somebodys lap. Each cat is quite funny as they seem to have a favourite member of the family whose lap they would prefer to sit and sleep on. My two children really love our cats especially during the evenings.

    The three cats will then wonder out again at around 10pm before asking to come back in around an hour later.

    What a life this is, if I am able to come back to this planet after I die, I would like to come back as a cat please.

    The cats have really been no trouble at all and we are planning to let both of our children have their very own cat to look after, for Christmas.

    For the record if any of you are interested out there, our current cats are called, Tom, Ben and Pip. They all get on really well together and very rarely fight.

    Maybe I am just lucky but when talking about the subject of cats with my family and friends, they all tell similar stories to mine.

    Our family now also owns a dog. Her name is Cassie and even though she requires a lot more attention as in the way of walks, she has also been a dream. In my opinion however you can not beat the cats and their lifestyle.


  • Teaching the Come Command to Your Dog

    f_01310739635_funny-cat08.jpgThe come command is a very useful and very important skill as it can get your dog quickly out of a difficult or dangerous situation. If your dog will instantly turn away from what it’s doing and return to you, then you have a safety mechanism continually at your finger-tips. As with all training, you should begin in a quiet location with few distractions (probably inside your own home), then increase the distractions as the new exercise becomes more familiar to your dog.
    You should have lots of treats ready for this training technique


  • Dog Training part IV – Reward and punishment

    f_21310739826_egor.jpgMost training revolves around giving the dog consequences for his behaviour, in the hope of influencing the behaviour the dog will exhibit in the future. Operant conditioning defines four types of consequences:

    Positive reinforcement adds something to the situation to increase the chance of the behaviour being exhibited again (for example, giving a dog a treat when he sits.)

    Negative reinforcement removes something from the situation to increase the chance of the behaviour being exhibited again (for example, releasing the tension on an uncomfortable training collar when the dog stops pulling on the leash).

    Positive punishment adds something to the situation to decrease the chance of the behaviour being exhibited again (for example, growling at a misbehaving dog).

    Negative punishment removes something from the situation to decrease the chance of the behaviour being exhibited again (for example, walking away from a dog who jumps up).

    Most modern trainers say that they use “positive training methods”, which is a different meaning of the word “positive” from that in operant conditioning. “Positive training methods” generally means preferring the use of reward-based training to increase good behavior over that of physical punishment to decrease bad behavior. However, a good trainer understands all four methods, whether or not she can put operant-conditioning terminology to them, and applies them as appropriate for the dog, the breed, the handler, and the situation.

    Rewards

    Positive reinforcers can be anything that the dog finds rewarding – special food treats, the chance to play with a tug toy, social interaction with other dogs, or the owners attention. The more rewarding a dog finds a particular reinforcer, the more work he will be prepared to do in order to obtain the reinforcer.

    Some trainers go through a process of teaching a puppy to strongly desire a particular toy, in order to make the toy a more powerful positive reinforcer for good behaviour. This process is called “building prey drive”, and is commonly used in the training of Narcotics Detection and Police Service dogs. The goal is to produce a dog who will work independently for long periods of time.

    Some trainers believe that the toy acts as a positive reinforcer for the desired behavior, when in all likelihood the prey drive works on an entirely different level from standard training and conditioning techniques. This is seen most clearly in the fact that, according to the laws of operant conditioning, positive reinforcers lose their effectiveness if they’re given every single time a dog does what is desired of him; the more predictable the reinforcer, the less reliable the behavior. Yet detection dogs only work well when they are always rewarded with a toy, every single time they find drugs or explosives, etc. The reason for this disparity is that when a dog is trained through the prey drive, the training activates an instinctive, automatic sequence that has to be completed in order for the dog to feel satisfied. That sequence is: search, eye-stalk, chase, grab-bite, and kill bite. So when a dog searches and finds drugs or explosives, he feels he hasn’t finished his job unless he can bite something. This is the primary reason he’s always given the toy. It’s not really a positive reinforcer. If it were it would reduce the reliability of the behavior overall. It’s a means of completing the predatory sequence for the dog.

    Punishments

    “Positive punishment” is probably the consequence that is least used by modern dog trainers, as it must be used very carefully. A dog is generally only given this type of punishment if it is willfully disobeying the owner. Punishing a dog who does not understand what is being asked of him is not only unfair to the dog, but can make the dog a fearful or unwilling worker.

    Punishments are administered only as appropriate for the dog’s personality, age, and experience. A sharp No works for many dogs, but some dogs even show signs of fear or anxiety with harsh verbal corrections. On the other hand, certain dogs with ‘harder’ temperaments may ignore a verbal reprimand, and may work best if the reprimand is coupled with a physical punishment such as a quick tug on a training collar. Trainers generally advise keeping hand contact with the dog to positive interactions; if hands are used to threaten or hurt, some dogs may begin to behave defensively when stroked or handled.

    Avoiding punishment

    Keeping a puppy on a leash in challenging situations or in his crate or pen when not closely supervised prevents the puppy from getting into situations that might otherwise invite an owner’s harsh reaction (such as chewing up a favorite pair of shoes).

    Next: Dog Training part V- The command voice