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How To Get Your Puppy Used To New Environments

Exposing puppies to differing surroundings, sounds and textures ensures they grow up to become self-assured pets. Dog Trainer Basil Theofanides teaches pet owners how to get their puppies used to new environments

“Welcome guys and good morning, this is going to be a fun session. It is not really formal training. This is about conditioning pups to environment. “

“The critical period of a puppy’s development is up to 16 weeks of age. If you don’t give these puppies a chance to explore and get used to the big, wide world what will happen then is you will end up with a very nervous puppy and I see it all the time. So today we are going to take the puppies for a walk and expose them to a variety of situations. “

“First we are going to use steps so Jude you ready to go? Follow me! Now Chance is deaf isn’t he? Because he’s deaf, he needs to be shown exactly what you want him to do and tap down on the ground so he sees it all, a lot of encouragement, good work well done Jude.

Sylvia, lets go, your turn. So crouch down, touch down on the thing. That’s it, well done good work.

Okay here we go Sarah. Come on Singey, let’s go. Nice and slow, slow it down. You take control a bit, boy oh boy look at this guy go, he’s done this before hasn’t he?”

“Alright guys you ready to hit the pebbles? Pebbles are important and I’ll tell you why - they move, they are tactile, it's unfamiliar surface and also they are auditory so they are going to do all these things and they are going to help puppies get used to this unfamiliar situation. So I think I might borrow Timmy for this, is that okay?"

"Come on Timmy, come on mate. Now he's going by himself there which is great and that’s how you need to let puppies explore, they need to go on their own, control them on the leash but don’t force them always encourage. Now you can see he’s sniffing everything that’s perfect, that’s excellent. Okay Sarah your next bring Singey around, it's not play time mate, just nice and slow under control. I don’t want you falling in the creek with him. Now you can see he is keen, he wants to get to the water, this guy’s a water dog. He’s exploring that’s fine. You come back this way because he’s confident enough. Good boy. Okay well done.

Who’s up next? We’ve got Chance! Okay I just want you to let him explore by himself but just control him a little bit. Let him go out, let him have a sniff. If he wants to sniff there that’s fine, we’re not forcing him. This is just all about conditioning. Well now he wants to chew the plants so let’s just try get him off there. Come on mate. That’s it, encourage but don’t force him. Little bit of a treat. He’s having a great old time. Look, his tail is down, look at his body language. This is all part of exploring we need to give the puppies an opportunity to do this. That’s excellent, well-done Jude. That just goes to show how important it is to get puppies familiar with all these different things we just take for granted. I keep saying this but it’s so important.

Well done guys, big day today but your puppies have had a great deal of benefit from it. Just a couple of key points, make sure you expose your puppies to a variety of situations and take advantage of the environment as much as possible.”

How do I toilet train my cat

I rescued an adult female, desexed cat six months ago. Apparently she’s always been an outside cat. I have another cat who is mostly indoors and I would only let outside during the day if I was home. Luna didn’t like being indoors and wasn’t using the litter tray properly. I had her confined in the bathroom for a few days to get use to it and she would go next to it, rarely in it. She will sometimes use a tray otherwise will urinate or poop on the floor. I am at wits end. I have two trays, I’ve changed the type of litter, put dirt in the tray, picked up the poop and put it in the tray to show her that where it goes. I’ve used spray in the tray to attract her to want to use the tray. I bought felliway diffuser which is meant to calm cats and have also used the rescue remedy drops in her food. I’ve recently moved house where there is a cat enclosure so she can go in and out when ever she pleases but still goes in the kitchen (as I now close the bathroom door when she started going to the toilet in there), but tonight I noticed she’s been going in the spare room if anything is left on the floor which is carpeted. So I’ve now cleared that whole room to prevent her from going to the toilet. She is still going in the kitchen. I’ve tried cleaning the area and eliminating her scent by using water and vinegar then once dry use bi carb soda and hydrogen peroxide and it has made no difference. She’s been tested for a bladder infection which came up negative. I love animals. I have another cat which she now gets along with and two dogs which she is still getting use to. I don’t know what else to do and I don’t want to give her up but feel like I will have no choice.