Potty Train in One Spot For Your Dog


How to Potty Train In One Spot

Dogs can make a mess of your yard when they relieve themselves anywhere they want. Dog pee causes brown spots on grass and makes your lawn less attractive. There’s also the chance that you’ll miss some poop with the scoop, only to step in it later. Plus, it’s not very sanitary or appealing to spend time in the yard if your dog does their business anywhere and everywhere, a particular concern for parents. Fortunately, you can potty train in one spot that you select.

Choose One Spot to Potty Train

Choose a dog potty spot outside of the high traffic areas of your yard. The spot you designate should be appropriate for the size of your dog. A small area might be fine for a toy or small breed dog, but larger breeds are going to need more space. Your dog won’t want to keep peeing and pooping in a tiny area that becomes very smelly and dirty.

Sometimes, a dog will choose its own spot. If your dog often returns to a particular area to relieve itself, try to make this the toilet area. Just make sure the chosen spot is realistic for you and your desired yard use.

Keep the Potty Spot Area Clean 

It’s important to keep your dog’s toilet area clean. You can leave one pile in the area during training to let your dog know that’s the right spot, but make sure not to leave any more than that. If the area gets too soiled, your dog may look to relieve itself somewhere else.

Potty Train In One Spot With Command

Observe the Dog’s Routines

Start by observing your dog’s physical cycle. While you can teach your dog to eliminate on command, you can’t force a dog to eliminate when it’s not physically ready to do so. In addition, you’ll need to understand your dog’s outdoor behaviors: What does it do in preparation for eliminating?

  • Are there times of day when it seems to need a walk?
  • When you take it outside, when does it urinate or defecate?
  • Does your dog need to poop multiple times a day?
  • Is there a particular time of day when you can pretty much expect your dog to poop?

Whenever you take your dog out to relieve itself, pay attention to its behavior. Dogs usually let us know when they’re about to go by doing things such as spinning, sniffing, or pacing back and forth in one spot. Figure out the signs that let you know your dog is about to relieve itself.

Set a Regular Schedule

It’s easiest for a dog to learn to eliminate on command when it can anticipate a walk. It’s a good idea to have regular walk times; many owners walk their pets first thing in the morning and the last thing at night, and add in a couple of additional walks at convenient times after work or school. Even if you live in a safe area and your dog doesn’t actually need a collar and leash, it’s a good idea to use both during the training period. This will ensure that your dog doesn’t wander off or get distracted as it learns to eliminate on command.

Add a Command

Once you know what behaviors will precede elimination, it’s time to add the command. Wait until you see your dog pacing or spinning, and give the command “hurry up,” “time to go,” or any other command you choose. Say the command clearly and wait until your dog relieves itself.

Reward Good Behavior

As soon as your dog goes, reward it. Give your dog lots of praise in a happy tone of voice and maybe a treat or two. Be sure the reward is something your dog will really enjoy and work for, as it will take some practice for your dog to learn to poop on command.

Practice the Command

This command may take a little longer than some others to teach a dog simply because you can only practice when your dog has to go. To get the fastest results, you need to be consistent. Every time you take your dog out, wait for the signals that it’s ready to go, and then give it the “hurry up” command. Be sure to reward it for going potty immediately. If multiple family members walk the dog, be sure they do exactly the same thing, using the same commands at the same time. Avoid allowing your dog to eliminate outside on its own during this training period.

Problems and Proofing Behavior

After you’ve practiced the command over the course of several days, you should notice the time between giving the command and the time your dog relieves itself getting smaller. It’s time to test the command.

On your next trip outside, take your dog to the spot where you want it to go, and give it the command without waiting for the pacing or spinning or other signals to begin. If your dog has a good understanding of the command, it should relieve itself quickly. If not, go back to practicing for a few more days and then test it out again.

Once your dog seems to have a good grasp of the command, you can make sure that it goes in a timely manner. Start rewarding it only after those times with a short gap between when you give the command and when it relieves itself. If you give the command and it spends several minutes sniffing around before going, it should not get a reward. The dog will quickly learn to go as soon as possible once you give the command.

Confine to Potty Train In One Spot 

Just as you don’t allow a dog who isn’t house trained to have free run of the house, a dog not trained to go in one spot shouldn’t have free run of your yard. The best way to keep your dog from going outside of the area you choose is to keep it on a leash. Stand in the spot you’ve chosen, and wait until the dog goes. Don’t let it explore other areas of the yard until that happens. 

You can also use temporary fencing to block off the area. Place your dog within the enclosed area and give the potty cue. Let your dog out of the enclosure once it has done its business.

Reward Good Behavior 

If your dog relieves itself in the right spot, give it a reward. As soon as the dog goes, praise it and let it off leash to have some playtime in the yard. If your dog doesn’t go, take it back inside and try again later. Don’t allow your dog the run of the yard if it has not gone potty yet.

Read Body Language 

During the times you allow your dog playtime, make sure to supervise it. Keep an eye on the dog’s body language.

Most dogs give a sign that they’re about to relieve themselves. They pace or spin or sniff. When you notice your dog engaging in any of these behaviors outside of the designated potty area, interrupt it and bring it to the right spot.

If your dog eliminates before you can stop it, then stop playtime and bring the pup indoors. Alternatively, if the dog holds it and does its business in the proper area, remember to reward it.

Problems and Proofing Behavior 

If your dog manages to go outside of the spot you choose, be sure to clean it up quickly. Scoop poop or rinse urine with a hose.

Don’t punish the dog by scolding. Instead, ignore the behavior and immediately take it inside. Your dog will quickly learn that relieving itself in the right spot means it gets to play while going anywhere else brings playtime to an end.

You can proof this training anytime you are not at home with your dog. For instance, when visiting someone’s home, ask them where they prefer your dog to go. Take your dog to that spot, give the potty command, and wait. The same can be done in a public park by selecting an out of the way spot. Of course, you need to pick up after your dog no matter where you are.

If you are training a puppy or adult dog that you recently welcomed in your home, here are the basics to start off. https://doggeekworld.com/2020/09/26/bringing-your-new-pup-home/

Bad Leash Behavior Dogs With Distractions


Tackling Bad Leash Behavior In Dogs

Bad leash behavior is an extremely common behavior issue faced by many dog-loving owners.

You start on the blissful journey of puppy parenthood, envisioning a future of leisurely strolling with your dog: cup of coffee and newspaper in hand, ready to settle in on a park bench, street café, or just around the neighborhood. Then reality sets in. Lovable pup often resembles Cujo while on leash.

I feel for owners battling bad leash behavior. I know they scratch their heads in bewilderment, sometimes even resorting to defending sweet pup by blurting aloud to passersby, “Really, he’s very sweet. He only does this on leash!”

Why Does Your Dog Have Bad Leash Behavior

Here’s what is going on. Your dog is probably frustrated and anxious. Very likely, he wanted to run after or gain access to whatever he saw while on the street. It could’ve been a squirrel, other dogs, skateboards etc.

That pesky prohibitive collar and leash however prevented your dog from gaining access to these things and over time, exuberant curiosity was replaced with frustration. Your dog needs to release that frustration and voila, the barking and lunging begins the bad leash behavior.


It is very likely that your dog’s initial outbursts were met with some form of disapproval from you.


The cycle then begins and now Pup begins to also feel anxious. He begins to think that not only do these things frustrate him, but they make Mom and Dad angry!


Now that we likely know the why, let’s focus on how to manage the behavior.

In any case of aggression, I strongly advise working with a gentle and humane professional to guide you through this process and teach you about the importance of your timing and consistency. Seek a trainer whose methods are firming planted in reward-based training.

Develop a more refined replacement behavior for the lunging and barking. A dog that is quietly trotting along your side, staring into your sparkling eyes is ideal. In order to get this going, you need to be a vigilant owner. It is now your job to scout out other dogs before your dog has the opportunity.

You must also be a well prepared owner. You must always be stocked with tasty treats or your dog’s favorite tug style toy. These will help your dog NOT have bad leash behavior.

Game Plan to Avoid Bad Leash Behavior

The very second you see a dog (before your dog has the chance to react) you quickly get Pup’s attention with a happy voiced, “Pup!” Give them treats or access to their toy as you get close to and continue to pass the other dog. During this time, it’s important that you remain calm, happy and refrain from tightening up on the leash. We are teaching Pup that both you and them need to relax in presence of other furry friends. Once the other dog has passed and is at a distance, the treating stops or the toy is put away.

Learning that you are the giver of all good things, your dog will become conditioned to look at you automatically when spotting another dog. This conditioning will also help improve Fido’s association with other dogs.

Giving Treats

It is very important, in kicking off this project, to be lavish in your reward giving, distributing treats every second while in sight of another dog. People often immediately retort, “My dog is going to get fat!” Not if you are a good owner and recognize that treats are incorporated into your dog’s daily ration of food. Cut back on what is going into the bowl, knowing that tackling this behavior hurdle is top priority for the health and happiness of both you and your dog. It might take a bit of retraining yourself!

Over time, as your dog becomes increasingly comfortable looking at you, while ignoring other dogs, you will slowly decrease the number of treats given. If you are a good consistent trainer, by the end of this process you will be flipping one treat to your dog after you’ve passed the other dog and even sometimes simply offering a “good boy!”

Bad Leash Behavior: Setting yourself up for success

When you are lazy, avoid routes with dogs! If you aren’t going to be a good trainer, don’t allow your dog to react–and thus unravel all the work you are doing. (It’s like a smoker who picks up a cigarette again!)

Practice “Look”

Practice “Pup, look!” every chance you get, NOT just when faced with other dogs. Your dog must make eye contact with you for everything he wants in life: before you put his food dish on the floor, snap on his leash, open the door for him to go outdoors, between each toss during a game of fetch. This is your batting practice. The more you and your dog get in the batting cage, the more successful you’ll be at the big game!

Exercise Before Walking

Exercise your dog. If you have a backyard, play fetch for fifteen minutes before going on a walk. Your dog will be a bit more tired, a bit more convinced that you are cool (after tossing the ball to him), and likely to free less anxious about those other dogs.

Work Hard

Work hard and your training will pay off. Sitting at at outdoor café without worry that your table flies out from under your plate as Pup lunges for another dog IS possible.

Here are some other tips of walking a dog on a leash. https://doggeekworld.com/2020/10/03/dog-walking-past/

[NOTE: If your dog is unable to pass another dog–while being treated and without reacting–you will need to consider proximity. Establish a comfort/space threshold: approaching other dogs only to the point where your dog is comfortable, and then crossing the street or creating a visual block as you get by. Over time, you’ll increase proximity. This will definitely require working with a professional.]

Even Trainers Need to Retrain Bad Leash Behavior

Even though I’m a certified dog trainer, I still need to retrain my own dog, Chloe. She is leash reactive mainly passing other dogs, but she will sometimes want to go for a squirrel. I use a head harness that helps with pulling and makes the dog look at you when you slightly tug to correct. She doesn’t care about treats when walking. She was doing great when passing dogs to where she would just whine a little, but keep walking. Now that I’ve been lazy, she has resorted back to barking at other dogs.

Training never stops with a dog. It is a lifetime of learning and upkeep on training.

Chloe laying around

Dog Sleep Position Tell About Them


Dog Sleep Positions And Habits Tell You A Lot About Their Personality And Health

Chloe using Frankie as a pillow. So cute!!

Dog sleep position in what they’re in, the way they twitch or move, and the amount of time they spend napping can reveal a lot about how they’re feeling.

Sleeping habits can give clues about a dog’s health and happiness that you can interpret if you know what to look for. Of course, if you spot anything unusual or different about your dog’s sleeping behaviors, you should get to your vet for a checkup.

Here are a few things to take notice of when your dog is sleeping and what they might mean.

Sleep Positions

Pay attention to the position your dog sleeps in most frequently. Your dog’s favorite sleeping position might change based on where they’re snoozing, who they’re sleeping near, or if they’re feeling a certain way.

Injuries or soreness can also cause a dog’s sleeping position to change, so if you notice anything unusual in your pup’s sleeping position, keep an eye out for signs of pain. Get to the vet if anything seems off.

Below are some common sleeping positions and what they might mean.

1. Dog Sleep Position On The Side

A dog who sleeps on their side has to feel pretty safe and comfortable, as it leaves the vital organs exposed.

Dogs who favor this position tend to be pretty easy-going and relaxed, though they may switch to a different position if they’re sleeping somewhere new or around someone they aren’t familiar with.

This position also leaves their limbs free to move during sleep, so you may see more twitching and leg kicks from a dog lying on their side.

2. Dog Sleep Position Curled Up

A very common position dogs take when sleeping is to curl up in a ball, nose-to-tail. It’s a common position for animals to take in the wild too, as it protects the vital organs, helps conserve warmth, and makes it easy to get up quickly.

This position restricts movement during sleep, so you may see less twitching from a dog who snoozes in a ball.

You might think that a dog who sleeps in this position would be uncomfortable in their surroundings, and while that may be the case, it’s not necessarily true. It’s a common position in fall and winter months when the weather is cool, or it may just simply feel better for a particular dog to sleep in that position.

3. Dog Sleep Position Sprawled Out On The Tummy

This is sometimes called the “Superman” position. It allows for a dog to pop up and be on their paws right away.

You often see this position with puppies who need to nap frequently but also want to be ready to jump up and play at a moment’s notice.

Dogs who sleep in this position don’t want to miss a chance to be in the action, even while they’re napping. It’s the position of choice for high-energy pups or pups who get sleepy during play and just want to plop down where they’re standing.

4. Dog Sleep Position On Their Back, Paws Up In The Air

In the same way curling in a ball conserves heat, sleeping with an exposed belly helps a dog cool off. Since the fur is thinner around the belly and the paws hold the sweat glands, exposing these areas is a great way to beat the heat.

It’s also a position that indicates a dog is very comfortable, leaving their most sensitive areas vulnerable and making it hard to get on their feet quickly.

A pup who’s sleeping in this position most likely doesn’t have a care in the world. It’s common in summer months.

5. Sleep Back-To-Back Or Snuggled Up

You may catch your dog sleeping back-to-back with your other pets or snuggling up to you, and it means the same thing. Your dog is bonding and showing that they want to get close to you or their furry siblings.

A dog sleeping this way feels very loving and affectionate, and they’re completely comfortable with whoever they’re napping with.

Try showing your love in return by taking a snooze with your pup.

Sleeping Behaviors

Once your dog is napping, you may get some clues about the quality of their sleep from their behavior.

Sleep is important for healing and repairing the body, and REM sleep, which is the deepest stage of sleep, is the most restorative.

Pay attention to these signs and behaviors to make sure your dog is getting the best sleep possible.

1. Circling And Digging Their Sleeping Area

It’s a normal behavior for dogs to circle their sleeping area or even dig a bit before lying down for sleep.

This is behavior that comes from dogs’ wolf ancestors who would often trample down grass, leaves, or snow to get comfortable. They might also dig a hole that would help keep them warm in winter or cool in summer.

Dogs tend to circle a few times before lying down, but doing it too much or having trouble settling in might be a sign of pain, arthritis, or a neurological issue. Consult a vet if you notice excessive circling.

2. Light Dozing Sleeping

A dog might doze off during the day if they’re bored or just getting a rest. This is not a very restful sleep, and your dog may just be waiting for something more interesting to come along.

Watch your pup’s ears and see if they perk up at any movement or unusual noise. This probably means that your dog is still fairly alert and looking for something worth getting up for.

Maybe it’s time to do something fun like go for a walk or play fetch.

3. Twitching, Wagging, Or Soft Barks While Sleeping

Dogs tend to move a bit during REM sleep when they’re most restful. They could very well be acting out their dreams, but they are getting a nice, deep sleep.

Twitching, tail wagging, leg kicks, and occasional barks or grunts are common. This is a good time to let sleeping dogs lie, as this stage of sleep is very restorative and good for their health.

Movement during sleep is actually more frequent in puppies and senior dogs, and no one can really explain why.

A less common reason for twitching during sleep is if a dog is cold. The twitches are the body’s way of warming up. If your dog is cold, get a blanket or move them to a warmer sleeping place.

4. Signs Of Distress While Sleeping

Like humans, dogs can have nightmares.

If your dog seems particularly agitated during sleep with more movement, barks, or whimpers than usual, you can try gently calming your pup down. Call their name softly and stroke their back or side. Use soothing tones.

Your pup may wake up or may just simply relax and continue on with a more pleasant dream after you’ve comforted them.

If you notice your dog frequently seems agitated during sleep, you may want to schedule a vet visit to be on the safe side.

5. Seizures While Sleeping

When twitching gets excessive, it could be a sign of a seizure that requires immediate medical attention.

Try calling your dog’s name and waking them up if you suspect that their movements are abnormal. If they wake, it may have just been an intense dream.

If they don’t respond to your calls, continue to shake, or feel stiff, get medical help right away.

You should pay attention to your dog’s usual sleeping habits so you know the difference and can tell when something is out of the ordinary.

Amount Of Sleep

Dogs sleep a lot more than people do. On average, dogs need about twelve to 14 hours of sleep a day.

Big dogs tend to take longer naps than smaller dogs, and puppies need about 18 to 19 hours of sleep a day, usually waking up for an hour after every few hours of sleep.

Take notice of your dog’s normal sleeping habits. If you notice a change in how long your dog sleeps, it could mean a lot of things from a dietary change to a thyroid problem.

If your dog is spending too much time napping, it could be time for a vet visit.

How does your dog sleep? Does your dog dream a lot? Does your pup take naps all day? Let me know in the comments below!

Pennies Are Bad For Dogs to Ingest


Zinc Toxicity in Dogs: Common Cents Caution for Pets

Swallowing pennies come at a high price for dogs that develop zinc toxicity.

Humans aren’t the only species with money troubles. Did you know that pennies can be hazardous to your dog’s health?

One-cent coins used to be made from 100 percent copper. Which is nontoxic to dogs. In 1982, the government began minting pennies that were made mainly from zinc (much cheaper). They coated them with a thin layer of copper, keeping the look of a penny (pretty isn’t always better). When swallowing a penny, the copper coating of the newer penny dissolves in the stomach acids. It then leaves a wafer of toxic zinc.

A few years back I saw a dog who had been sick. He was vomiting for two days and his blood work revealed both anemia (low red blood-cell count) and elevated kidney values. There are many causes for these type of symptoms. There are infectious disease, immune-mediated disease, inflammatory disease and toxins that count for low blood levels. That’s just to name a few for dogs.

His owner had no idea if he’d eaten anything out of the ordinary. X-rays revealed a round metallic object in the stomach. You guessed it, the dog ate a penny. An endoscope was used to remove the penny. The dog recovered during the course of the week with intensive supportive care. A very expensive penny that the owners paid for!

Just like in this case, you might not know what your dog ingested. Symptoms may show within a couple hours to a couple days after ingestion.

If you think your dog ate something dangerous call your vet immediately or ASPCA Poison Control Hotline (888) 426-4435, or National Pet Poison Helpline (800) 213-6680.

Common Toxicity Signs

The clinical signs and potential problems caused by zinc toxicity include:

  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Blood-tinged urine
  • Icterus (yellow mucous membranes including gums and the “whites” of the eyes)
  • Liver failure
  • Kidney failure
  • Hemolysis (which is the destruction of red blood cells)
  • Anemia

Sources Of Zinc

Many dog owners might not realize that zinc is harmful. They might not be aware of some of the common sources pets have access to it.

Beyond pennies other potential sources of zinc include hardware. These include nuts and bolts, dietary supplements, and (surprisingly) zinc oxide–based skin creams, such as diaper rash ointment and sunscreen.


The zinc should be removed promptly. Especially if the object possibly made of zinc is seen on a radiograph. Supportive care then becomes crucial. It includes fluid therapy to keep circulation to the kidneys adequate, helping to prevent failure.

A blood transfusion may be necessary to combat anemia. Anti-nausea medications are indicated to stop nausea. As well as stomach protectants (antacids and “coating” medications). These medicines are used due to the corrosive nature of zinc.

Researchers are still actively looking at methods for binding excess zinc in the circulation. Similar to the way lead poisoning is treated by binding lead. Unfortunately, this is not yet available.

Prevention Of Toxicity

  • In addition to coins, be mindful of the nuts and bolts on your dogs’ kennels as they may contain zinc.
  • Do not use ointments and creams on the fur or skin of your pet.(Unless directed by your veterinarian.) Ointments usually get licked off causing toxicity.
  • Keep vitamins, dietary supplements and topical creams far out of your pets reach.

Many people are unaware of zinc toxicity syndrome. They do not realize that pennies swallowed by dogs are far more dangerous than a “simple” foreign body.

As always, prevention is best: ”Penny wise, pound foolish” has a whole new meaning.


Guilty Look From Dogs. Is It Really Guilt?


“Listen, I Can Explain Why I Give You a ‘Guilty’ Look”

“I got mad that you didn’t leave me any pizza!”

You’ve probably seen the “guilty look” from dogs, or maybe you’ve seen one of the countless guilty dog memes or viral videos online. But what does that guilty look mean? Are dogs actually ashamed of their behavior when they look like that?

On an average day, you probably get home and see your dog. They bound cheerfully to you, full of wags and wiggles. You talk to them and give them lots of love. Your dog knows this sequence and expects this greeting and attention when you walk in.

Now, let’s say that, on a certain day, your dog gets a little bored and decides to have a treasure hunt while you’re gone. You arrive home to find your chewed shoes strewn about, and your dog sitting in the corner.

What do you do? The average dog parent lets out a big “HUFF,” following it up with a “you’ve been quite the naughty dog,” lecture. Your dog turns their head down and looks up with that classic guilty face. But what are they actually thinking?

Guilty Look From Dogs Know Something Is Wrong

Think of the difference between your body language during your lecture and during an average daily greeting or interaction. You are using a different tone of voice, moving erratically, giving very stern looks, and not touching your dog as you normally do

Your dog looks at you and sees and very different individual than they see on an average day, which tells your dog that something is askew. They may slink away from you, tuck their tail, drop their ears, and give you whale eye.

They know you’re not your typical, chirpy-cheery self, and they’re offering you body language to let you know they’re a bit confused and threatened. Your dog is trying to calm you and to avoid any further conflict.

People, often mistake these very normal body language offerings as “guilt.” By doing so, we are making assumptions that the dog is admitting to some wrong-doing and feeling ashamed with getting busted.

There’s nothing to prove this though.

Dogs May Make A Connection, But It’s Likely Not Guilt

To assume your dog is making a connection between you being angry with garbage on the floor and them putting it there is actually quite a stretch.

Logically think about why a dog would understand that garbage on your floor is wrong. Do you think your dog understands the expense of your flooring, germs, and the value you place on your time cleaning it up? Those are all things that would make a human feel a sense of wrongdoing — or at least recognition of putting someone else out.

Assuming your dog can work through a situation like this would mean dogs are capable some pretty high-order thoughts and feelings.

They’d have to connect your reaction to the physical reason you’re upset — the mess. Then they’d have to connect the mess to their own past behavior and put it all together to realize that their behavior caused your reaction.

Then, after all of that, they’d have to feel badly that they behaved in a way that caused a situation that caused you to be angry — that an action that they’re no longer performing is the source of your frustration — and finally perform body language to express those feelings of remorse to you.

“All I can think about is food, potty, and sleeping.”

Human children — and even many adults — struggle to make all of those complex connections and feel guilt or shame about what they’ve done.

Maybe dogs can put that all together; however, there’s no research to support this.

Dogs Who Aren’t Guilty Still Look Guilty

The video above perfectly exemplifies that dogs’ guilty looks are likely only a response to our reactions. There are two dogs in the video. One is guilty; the other is not. Why is the Dalmatian then offering a “guilty” look?

Watch the video twice. The Dalmatian slinks toward the camera, offers a stretch — a dog calming mechanism — lies down, yawns, licks his lips, and offers a head turn. So, was he a conspirator, or is he just responding to the human being upset?

The dog who made the mess is then targeted. The camera comes closer, and the dog continues to offer soft eye blinks and a drooped head. The dog is reacting to the human’s challenging body posture and voice; he’s not acting guilty.

Both dogs demonstrate “guilty” behaviors, but only one of them could be the perpetrator. This suggests they are both reacting to their human’s reaction.

‘Guilty’ Dogs Look An Awful Lot Like Confused Or Fearful Dogs

Let’s take another couple of examples.

Let’s say there’s a heap of clothes in your laundry room and you react the same way to this chore. Your dog would likewise offer that very same body language.

“Huff! I don’t want to do this laundry! Darn kids. All they do is pile on piece after piece! This house is busier than a laundromat!”

In this case, you’re simply talking aloud or commiserating with your dog, but they don’t know that. They may slink off again. Unless you have an overly fashionable dog, they’re not guilty of making the laundry pile. So why would they slink off in a “guilty” way?

Again, they just understand that something is off kilter, and you’re not happy.

A frightened dog in a shelter looks very similar to a “guilty” dog. Do we assume they’re carrying continued guilt from tearing up the couch, and that’s what landed them in the shelter?

No. Most people would simply recognize the dog is offering fearful and confused body language. That dog’s body language is the same as a guilty dog. Why?

Because the “guilty” dog is not acting or feeling guilty; rather, they’re feeling nervous, confused, and frightened by humans’ gestures.

Don’t Project Your Own Feelings Onto Your Dog

When assuming dog looks guilty, we’re merely projecting human feelings onto them by context of the situation when, in actuality, our dogs are likely reacting to our reactions.

We’ve conditioned them to understand our happy-go-lucky postures and greetings, as well as our angered and frustrated ones. Research points only that far.

So, the next time your dog has a housetraining mistake, tips your garbage can over, or digs an organic dessert from the cat’s litter box and gets caught, just remember they’re not admitting any wrong-doing, or feeling ashamed. They’re simply reacting to your anger or frustration.

In these cases, the only one who should be reprimanded as “naughty” for chewed shoes, house training accidents, and the very long list of other doggy domestic mishaps is the person who opted to not train or crate their exploratory dog, leaving them free to find household chewing hazards and make mistakes.

Now who has the guilty look?

Has your dog ever given you a guilty look? Do you think dogs feel guilt, or are they just reacting to their humans? Let me know in the comments below!

Stinky Dog Farts: Causes And Prevention Tips


Eww, Who Farted?

Stinky dog farts are sometimes a thing of legend. You know your dog has a gassy problem when cuddling on the couch turns into a test of how long you can hold your breath. Your four-legged family member can let them rip with more stench than any person you know. While all dogs fart on occasion, some have the unnerving ability to pass gas that can only be described as deadly.

Farting is completely natural and sometimes even good for your dog’s health, but poots that make you gasp for fresh air are a sign something isn’t right with your dog’s digestion. Smelly dog farts can’t actually hurt the person who’s forced to smell them, but the underlying issue could be affecting more than your home’s air quality. Before I get into ways to stop the smell, consider possible reasons your dog’s fart are especially bad.

Why Dogs Fart

According to the AKC, dogs develop gas for the same reasons their owners do.

“A change in diet, a food that doesn’t agree with them, and gastrointestinal illness can all lead to imbalances in the microflora in your dog’s stomach and small intestines. These organisms are responsible for the excess gas and subsequent farts that are making you and your dog miserable.”

“Well how dare you do that near me!”

Eating too much fiber and ingesting foreign objects can both be reasons why a dog is farting more than normal. Certain dogs also tend to swallow a lot of air when they eat and drink, especially short-nosed brachycephalic breeds like Pugs and Boston terriers. This additional swallowed air has to come out some way!

“Do you guys smell that?”

A sudden change in their diet can also upset a dog’s stomach, and excessive farting may be a symptom of food allergies. Before you can successfully put an end to the stink, you’ll need to determine whether the issue is related to a medical problem or nutritional lapse. If your dog isn’t interested in trying the new food you decide on, use this special trick.

  • Pick up the food bowl that has the new food that your dog doesn’t seem interested in.
  • Go to the fridge and open it, shuffling things around in the fridge.
  • Act like you are putting something in the dog bowl and shuffle the food around.
  • Set the bowl back down for the dog to eat.

Most dogs will think, “Hey, they just put some good yummy human food in my bowl!” and start to eat the new food.

How to Help Stinky Dog Farts Less

Your strategy for helping relieve your dog’s stinky dog farts will largely depend on the underlying cause. It might not be necessary to try all these suggestions, but if your dog seems otherwise healthy and you haven’t been able to pinpoint anything specific that’s causing the smell, it won’t hurt to initiate a full-on plan of attack. Here are a few things you can do.

1. Switch Dog Foods For Less Farts

Before you stress over the possibility of your dog being sick, realize the food they eat is directly related to the gas they produce. VetWest Animal Hospital writes,

“Most cases of chronic flatulence are caused by a diet that is poorly digested by the dog. These poorly digestible diets cause excessive fermentation in the colon and subsequent gas formation.”

Commercial dog foods aren’t always formulated with a dog’s healthy digestive system in mind. It’s up to you to read the list of ingredients and determine if it’s helping or hurting your dog’s health. The extra food your dog earns through begging could also be an issue. Dogs aren’t built to properly digest most human food, and regularly eating table scraps could be the simple reason why your dog farts. High-fat diets are known for causing excess gas, and foods like beans, dairy, and peas aren’t good either.

Try switching to a better quality dog food to test if it affects your dog’s gas. When you make the switch, do it gradually. Your dog’s stomach and intestines need time to adjust to the dietary change.

2. Make Them Eat Slower, Less Air for Stinky Dog Farts

Along with what your dog eats, how they eat could also be contributing to their farting problem. Dogs that scarf down their food in seconds also swallow a lot of air. The extra air passes through the digestive system and puffs out the other end in the form of flatulence. You need to slow your dog’s roll, and the best way to do that is with a slow feed dog bowl. These bowls have maze-like ridges on the bottom that force chowhounds to slow down.

PetMD also reports respiratory diseases can cause dogs to take in extra air, and AKC lists brachycephalic breeds like bulldogs and pugs as being more likely to swallow air while eating. Dogs might also take in excess air because they’re eating near a competing dog and feel the need to hurry up and eat before their food is stolen. Moving them to a private area during dinner will help them relax and eat without swallowing too much air.

3. Get Moving, Leave Farts Outside

Overweight dogs that rarely exercise are more at risk of developing chronic gas than the average active pup. Regular exercise helps stimulate the gastrointestinal tract. When digested food moves through the system smoothly, noxious gas is less of a problem. Going on walks also encourages dogs to poop, and going to the bathroom gives them the chance to expel those nasty odors somewhere other than your living room.

4. Feed Multiple Meals Per Day

Feeding a dog one or two large meals a day is okay, but it isn’t what’s best for their intestinal tract. With small meals, there’s less food sitting in the stomach that can ferment and turn into gas. This prevents there from being a build-up of gas that eventually turns into an expulsion of toxic fumes (aka stinky dog farts). Eating smaller amounts of food is also easier on digestion for dogs with sensitive stomachs. It won’t change the amount of food your dog eats, it only spreads out calorie consumption to be more manageable.

5. Avoid Handing Out Table Scraps

“If I just could have some of that please.”

There’s a reason dog food comes separately from our own. Foods high in fat and sugar that we humans enjoy (probably too often) can upset a dog’s tummy. Most dogs are lactose intolerant as well, so don’t go tossing them cheese or cakes. You should also avoid letting them have steamed vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower. (If it makes you have major gas, it’s going to be worse for your poor dog.)

6. Try Dietary Supplements for Farts

A study (admittedly of humans) found that charcoal and zinc acetate reduced the fart smell. Another study found that Yucca schidigera reduced hydrogen sulfide concentrations that make dog poop extra smelly. All of these are available as dietary supplements, but consult your vet before you start giving them to your dog. They might also recommend probiotic powders or antacids.

7. Visit the Vet If Farts Are Not Resolving

If nothing seems to be working, it’s time to consider the possibility your dog has a medical condition. Excessive gas could be a symptom of any of the following issues:

  • Canine colitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Intestinal parasites
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Cancer
  • Pancreatitis

But don’t freak out just yet. The only way to confirm the theory is to visit the vet. Don’t hold back when describing the severity of your dog’s smell and the frequency of their farts. Whether your dog has a GI illness, allergies, pancreas function failure, or parasites, a vet will be able to give you a diagnosis and suggest appropriate treatment.

“Hurry up and give me one of those gas pills. I’m feeling bloated!”

Frankie’s and Chloe’s Stinky Dog Farts Story

“Fart war begins after we eat.”
“There goes that sound again!”

Frankie was a pug, so I knew there would be farting. It was always cute at first when he would fart because he would toot and be startled by it. You’d hear a little “pffft” and he would quickly turn and sniff asking “Did that just come out of me?”. Later in his life he developed pancreatitis, which made his farts the worst I’ve ever smelled. It would make you gag! Then we’d have the family fanning the direction it would go!

“I think I just farted.”

Chloe has a little smoosh in her nose and has a elongated palate, so a lot of air gets trap when she eats and gets treats out of her toy. I’ve never heard a dog fart so loud! Some of the time I think it’s my husband. Chloe doesn’t care when she farts. She just lets them flow right out without noticing what she’s doing. When she’s sleeping is when the worst of the farts come out. All you hear is a “hhoooo” and all of a sudden it reeks!

10 Bad Human Food You Should Never Feed Your Dog


Before throwing your dog a scrap of food, be sure it won’t harm them.

Sometimes it’s really difficult to say no to your dog – especially when they pin their bottomless brown eyes on you as you eat dinner. How can you deny that face? Well, in some cases you absolutely must turn your dog down. There are some bad food that you should never feed your dog.

Keep this list in mind the next time your pup points their puppy dog eyes at you. Now, you’ll know what is most dangerous to him. Keep in mind – these are only some of the foods your dog should never eat.

The Bad Food You Should Never Feed Your Dog


“Which team did you bet against?”

You probably know not to give your pup alcoholic beverages, but I want to reiterate how harmful it can be for your dog. Alcohol has the same impact on a dog’s liver and brain that it does a human. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, decreased coordination, difficulty breathing, tremors, abnormal blood acidity, coma, and even death.


“I don’t know if you should be feeding me avocados.”

Some fruits and vegetables are completely okay for your dog to consume. Others are not so safe. Some say avocados are safe. Others say avocados are not. Some say just a little is fine. Bottom line, keep your pup away from avocados. This fruit has persin, a fungicidal toxin, which can cause serious health problems in many animals. The Merck Veterinary Manual says dogs are more resistant to persin than other animals, but it could still cause harm. Keep your pup away from avocados.

Candy, Chewing Gum, Toothpaste, and Mouthwash

Many of these foods contain xylitol, a sweetener that can cause insulin release in many species. An increase in insulin leads to hypoglycemia (lowered sugar levels). What this means practically for your pup: vomiting, lethargy, loss of coordination, and even seizures. These items are a no go for dog consumption. Some sweet treats also contain Xylitol, which can be deadly to dogs.

Chocolate, Coffee, and Caffeine

“Could I just have one cookie and a sip of your coffee?”

These three things speed your dog’s heart rate and stimulate the nervous system.  They contain methylxanthines which can cause vomiting and diarrhea, panting, excessive thirst and urination, hyperactivity, seizures, and even death. Note: Dark chocolate is more harmful than milk chocolate. The amount your dog ingested and your dog’s weight and other factors determine how sick your dog may become.

Cooked Bones

Don’t let this be your dog.

Bones are not as easily digestible. It’s not difficult to snap or splinter the bone into smaller pieces and/or jagged edges. This makes for a choking hazard for your dog. The bone could get stuck in your dog’s throat or even damage the gastrointestinal tract.

Onions and Leeks

“By the way these smell, I’m not getting close to them!”

These foods are particularly harmful to your pup. It doesn’t matter if they are cooked, raw, powdered or within other foods. They can cause gastrointestinal irritation and could lead to red blood cell damage. If a dog consumes enough of any of these foods, it can lead to negative consequences. As these are often an ingredient in a recipe, it’s important to keep an eye out for them.

Grapes and Raisins

“Please don’t feed these to me. It can really hurt me.”

These foods can be highly toxic to dogs. And for some reason, dogs are extremely attracted to the sweet fruit. In 2016, the Animal Poison Control Center received more than 3,700 calls involving grapes and raisins. Unfortunately, grape/raisin toxicity can even be fatal. Ingesting the fruit could potentially lead to acute (sudden) kidney failure in dogs. 

Here are the signs and symptoms that may occur after a toxic ingestion of grapes/raisins:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy, weakness, unusual stillness
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea, often within a few hours
  • Abdominal pain (tender when touched)
  • Dehydration (signs include panting; dry nose and mouth; pale gums). A quick way to test for dehydration is to gently pull up on the skin at the back of your dog’s neck. It should spring back immediately.
  • Increased thirst and/or urine production or diminished amount of urine or complete cessation altogether
  • Kidney failure (which can be fatal)

Macadamia Nuts

“I’m not feeling so well.”

You must be vigilant if you have macadamia nuts near your pooch. They can be extremely toxic to your pup, causing weakness, depression, vomiting, tremors, and hyperthermia. These symptoms typically appear within 12 hours of ingestion and can last between 12 and 48 hours.

Raw/Uncooked Meat and Eggs

While raw diets are very popular and can be very healthy for your dogs, extreme care should be exercised, as these uncooked foods can have bacteria like Salmonella and E. coli which causes food poisoning. Have you ever had food poisoning? It’s not pleasant, and your dog can have similar uncomfortable symptoms like vomiting, fever and enlarged lymph nodes.

Salt and Salty Snack Foods

Large amounts of salt aren’t good for a human or dog diet. However, loads of salt is even more concerning for dogs. Eating lots of this mineral can lead to sodium ion poisoning. Symptoms of the disease include vomiting, diarrhea, depression, tremors, increased temperature, seizures, and even death. That means don’t share your potato chips or salted popcorn with your pup.

What To Do In Case Of An Emergency

If your dog consumes some of these unhealthy-for-dogs human foods, call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center right away. There are risks with eating food that doesn’t mesh well with a dog’s biology, and you can’t treat the harmful effects at home.

Treatment varies depending on what your pup consumed, but oftentimes your vet will induce vomiting. 1800PetMeds explains some forms of treatment, “For pets that shouldn’t or can’t vomit, your veterinarian may give your pet an anesthetic to flush the stomach. Gastric flushing removes a large amount of material and removes materials that are slow to exit the stomach. Veterinarians will not use this technique with convulsing pets, or with pets that swallowed caustic materials such as bleach or petroleum products.”

“I can’t believe I ate something bad for me!”

You can’t be around your pup at all times, so you may not catch your dog in the act of eating something they shouldn’t. Your job is to notice any changes in your dog’s behavior. If they begin to show signs of lethargy, start vomiting, have loss of coordination, or the other symptoms we mentioned, take your dog to visit her doctor.

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“I Love You” Told By Your Dog With Gestures


5 Ways Your Dog Tells You “I Wuf You”

For anyone that has a dog in their life, they know what it’s like to have the unconditional love of their canine companion. Dogs show us their love though their undying loyalty and kindness, but it’s the funny things that they do that really make us feel special.

No two dogs are ever going to be the same, but there are certain things that almost all dogs do to show us the quirky ways of their love. Take a look at these 5 secret ways that dogs say “I love you”:

#1 Well, Good Morning to You, Too Love!

Every morning do you feel that wet nose rubbing against your face, nudging you awake? It may be to go outside or to fill up that food bowl for breakfast, but ultimately it’s because they love you oh-so-much and they just want you to be awake.

One of the few times I’m awake before Chloe!

Frankie would always get in my face and sniff my hair to wake me up when I was still living at home. It was nice waking up to snorting in my face! But I had to be quick because usually he really had to poo!

Chloe will lick my nose up to my eyes when it’s time to wake up. Nothing like a slobbery kiss to wake you up!

#2 Not Freaking Out When You Leave The House

Whether your dog has free reign of the house or stays in their kennel when you go, if they don’t fight you when you walk out the door, it’s for one reason and one reason alone: They love you. And not only that, they know that you will be back. So go ahead and feel warm and fuzzy inside each time that happens.

“Just remember to bring me back something!”

Chloe likes when we leave because she has her own room with a queen bed that she can look over the backyard and watch squirrels and birds. She loves to sunbathe when the sun is hitting just right. (We have a camera in her room so we can check on her!) She knows when we tell her to “Go To Bed”, she’ll get a treat and have the whole room to herself. She mostly just naps!

#3 Stalking You Love–As Best As A Dog Can

Dogs are not going to slink around the house stealthily the way in which a cat can–unless maybe there’s food involved–but when they sort of creep on you, the reason is simple: they just gotta be near their numero uno, because they wuv you.

“Don’t tell mamaw that I’m up here.”

Frankie always had to know where mamaw was going around the house. He would be hot on her heels so he wouldn’t miss anything going on. My mom has tripped over him more than a dozen times because he’d always be right behind you trying to sneak.

Chloe has to know where I’m at all times. I can’t even get up to get a drink without her sneaking around the corner to see what I’m up to. She’s always trying to find where I’m at in the house if I’m not next to her. She loves to sit close to me wherever I’m at.

#4 Leaning On You for Love

This move is something that all dogs do–regardless of shape or size–and some dogs, like the Doberman, even have the running joke (they’re known as the “Doberlean” by owners). Dogs lean on you so that they can connect with you, literally channeling their love to you by touch. Pretty sweet, right?

It’s so wonderful that dogs put so much trust and love that they love to lean against you. I’ve had many dogs lean on me when I took them for a walk at the shelters. It’s really funny when a big dog like a great dane just starts to lean against you and you have to try to hold both of you up!

“Could you tell these other humans to get out of our way?”

Chloe loves to lean her head on daddy when we are going somewhere. I know she wants to sit up front and cuddle! She really leans against you when you start to pet her and she begs for more by leaning harder against you, until she flops on the floor and does a “pet me” dance on her back!

#5 Love Bringing You Their Favorite Toy

Dogs are like kids sometimes, and like kids, they can have little phases of fun. But if you notice that your dog continually brings you their favorite toy of the moment, this means that they love you, respect you, and not only this, but look to you as their pack leader. And that my friend, should make you proud.

“I’ll wait until your out of the bathroom mommy.”

Chloe’s favorite toy is her “Blue Ball” that she loves to shove at you. All you have to ask her is, “Where’s your ball?” and she’ll go grab it. It’s especially funny when she doesn’t remember where she left it and gives a look like, “Where the heck did I put?”. Of course it’s a toy where you can put treats in, so she really loves it when we give her cookies in it.

How does your dog tell you that they love you? Any weird ways? Tell me in the comments!!

Camping With Dogs – Pack a Dog Backpack


Do you take your dog camping?

In the U.S. alone, more than 30 million people each year take their pets with them while camping. Yet, when we first started camping with Chloe, I was unable to find much written on the subject of camping with dogs.

Sure, there were the occasional articles in magazines that reminded us to use pet ID tags, bring plenty of water, and take their favorite toy.

But in terms of providing genuine support or bottomline information, there was nothing out there. Since it was something that I felt was badly needed, I decided to write this article.

While there are numerous issues to consider while camping with dogs, these are some of the most important.

1. Make Sure that Your Dog Can’t Get Lost

It’s one thing if your dog gets free in your neighborhood. It’s another when you’re at a rest stop, nine hundred miles from home. Either train your dog to come when called or make absolutely sure that they’re on a leash at all times.

2. Get All of their Vaccinations Up to Date Before Camping With Dogs

If your dog gets into an altercation with another animal (or a person), the central issue will become their rabies shots. If you stay at a campground that has a demanding pet policy, you’ll need to verify your dogs vaccination records.

3. Make Your Dogs Easy to Identify

If your dog does get lost (unfortunately, it happens all the time), the ability to easily identify them will become critical. For permanent identification purposes, consider tattoos or microchips. At a minimum, make sure they wear tags that show their name, your current phone number, and the date of their last rabies vaccination.

4. Clean Up After Your Dog

The biggest complaint about dogs has nothing to do with their bark, their bite, or their behavior. If you pick up after your dog, you’ll be helping dog owners everywhere by not spreading diseases found in feces.

5. Learn How to Provide First Aid to Your Dog

If a medical crisis occurs while at home, you drive to your local veterinarian. But if you’re heading down a dark highway in a strange town, it will seem like a bad dream. Although there are ways to get help while on the road, it always takes more time. In the meantime, your ability to provide competent first aid could save your dog’s life.

6. Involve Your Dog in Everything You Do

If you really want your dogs to have a good time, include them in your activities. Take them with you on long walks. Buy a cheap plastic wading pool and let them play in the water. Throw a ball. Cook them up a hamburger. If you do stuff like that, they’ll do cartwheels the next time you decide to take them camping.

7. Call the Campgrounds Before You Go Camping With Dogs

Even if a park claims they’re pet friendly, always call ahead to confirm their policy regarding your dogs. Most parks we’ve been to are very pet friendly and always love on Chloe.

8. Plan Ahead for the Unexpected

Have a plan (for your dogs) in case of a flat tire, a serious accident, or a fire in your RV. Start with a few extra leashes, a pet carrier, and an extra fire extinguisher. Then have a fire drill to identify potential problems.

9. Learn About Your Camping Environment While Camping With Dogs

The U.S. is a huge country with a vast assortment of dangerous wildlife, treacherous plants, unpredictable weather conditions, and demanding environmental challenges. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you might inadvertently be putting yourself and your dog in danger.

10. Recognize and Respect the Views of Others

While some of us can’t imagine traveling without dogs, others can’t image traveling with them. If you keep your dog under control and clean up after them, you won’t give others much to grumble about.

Pet Sitter : Where to Find the Best


How to Find the Best Pet Sitter For You

There are many things to consider when you are looking for a pet sitter for your dog. If you go somewhere you can’t take your dog, an option is hiring a pet sitter.

Pet sitters care for your pet just as a babysitter cares for your child while you are gone. Pet sitters do much more than just providing food and water. A good pet sitter will look after your pet as you would yourself. A pet sitter will provide exercise, some playtime, some attention and also be aware if your pet needs veterinary attention.

People with particularly high maintenance pets will benefit from the services of a pet sitter.

Pet sitters will allow for the most positive experience your pets can have while you are away. Pet sitters offer the added advantage of allowing your pets to stay in their own environment while you are away. Your pet will be less stressed than if they where in a boarding place.

Pet sitters provide one on one attention and the special care that your beloved pet will require in your absence.

Hiring a pet sitter will not only give you peace of mind but will also save you worrying about your pet while you are away. Your home is also a lot safer. You have someone who will pick up the mail, water the plants and check on the general welfare of the entire home.

Its worth the expense for the added peace of mind and the comfort of your dog.

Finding the Right Sitter

If you are going through the trouble to pay someone to look after your pet and home while you are gone, you will want to spend some time choosing the best pet sitter for you and your pet.

You can start with an online search. You can also ask your Veterinarian for a reference. The vet often knows who the best pet sitter in the area is.

Make sure you see some qualifications.

Also make sure to ask for references and follow up. This is the best way to get some idea of how reliable your pet sitter is. References are the best way to gauge which is the best pet sitter for your home.

It’s best to line up a few different options. Arrange interviews with them all. Check to see how they interact with your animal. Many pet owners know that animals can be fussy too!

When interviewing your prospective pet sitter, it’s useful to see if the sitter asks a variety of questions too. The pet sitter should be interested in any medical conditions your pet might have, likes, dislikes allergies etc. If your sitter does not ask these questions, rather choose someone who is genuinely concerned about the well being of your pet.

When choosing a pet sitter you don’t want to take any chances. After all it’s not just your pet who is vulnerable it’s the entire contents of your home too!

You can make things a bit easier for your pet sitter too. Buying extra pet food and treats, leaving clear instructions and taking your pet for their regular checkups will ensure that things go smoothly. If you have a pet that is fussy or has a medical condition make sure you leave clear instructions for the sitter as to how to handle the situation.

Also if you have a complicated alarm system or security system make sure to explain clearly to the sitter how to get in and out, and how to secure the property in your absence. Leave a copy of your keys with a trusted neighbor and explain that you will be away. You can never have too many people keeping their eyes open.

Now that you know your pet and home are being well looked after, you can have a relaxed holiday. All that’s left to do is enjoy your vacation!

My Experience As a Pet Sitter

Wag! Dog walking and pet sitters

Rover Dog walking and pet sitters

I have worked with companies like Wag!, Rover, and Care.com taking care of people’s dogs. I always do a meet-and-greet before the owners leave. This gives everyone a chance to talk and get to know each other, especially the dog! Some companies don’t require it, but it is essential that you engage with the owners and any questions they have.

While walking or pet sitting, I let the owners know what is going on and take pictures of their dogs enjoying time with me and send them to the owner. I’m always giving updates on how they are doing, how much they have been eating, and about their bowel movements (especially when it’s diarrhea).

I try to find the best activity for the dogs like if they like walking in a park, walking around the neighborhood, or just playing in the backyard. Running them around and make sure they get all their energy out before I leave them.

“A tired dog is a happy dog.”