Now that the summer heat is on us, there are some precautions to remember. We like to train in the mornings and/or evenings when it is a little cooler. Our dogs are outside so they acclimate to the heat well but when the humidity is high, we have to be careful not to over heat anyone. Always provide fresh cool water all day long. Avoid hot pavement as it can burn the dogs paw pads. If a dog gets overheated, immediately remove them from the heat and into an air conditioned area, and provide the dog with cool water to drink. You can also cool the dog down with water, and contact your vet.
If your dog has a double coat, do not shave your dog thinking it will stay cooler. They use their undercoat to help regulate their body temp. Shaving them does more harm than good. If your dog is like ours, we are in a full coat blowing out right now. I brush our dogs daily and the amount of hair that is coming off of them right now is unreal. Today I got so much hair off of everyone that I could coat a whole other dog! Removing this hair by brushing them, while they are blowing their coat, helps them stay cooler.
Always be careful while training in the heat!
We have postponed the start date of our Basic Obedience Class to June 15th. This will allow for more dogs to register for this class. We are also excited to soon have t-shirts made with our logo on them! Keep checking our Facebook page for a T-shirt giveaway! We have had some private training sessions that have gone very well! We look forward to many more. I will have more agility obstacles completed this week and set in place.
We will be breeding soon and expect two if not three litters this year.
We are very excited to announce our basic obedience class will begin June 1st! Contact us for details. The class will cover the "heel", "come", "sit", "down", and "stay" commands. Sign up today to reserve your spot!
We have added a training classes page to our website! Keep checking our website and Facebook page to see when the classes will begin. We will be starting with group obedience classes and adding more classes as time goes on. Come join us at Impact K9 USA to get the proper training for your dog!
Since we talked about the possibility of a dog fight at dog parks, let's talk about how to break them up if it happens. The ideal situation would be to not be alone with two dogs fighting. If you're like me, you would jump right in but that means you're definitely going to get bit. If there are two people, each person needs to grab the back legs of a dog, lift them up, and pull them apart. Once the dogs separate they will still be in fight mode so you will need to get them thinking of something else. Immediately start to turn them in circles as you back up from the other dog. Turning them in circles eliminates the chance of them spinning around to bite you since they are still in the heat of the moment. Once the dogs are far enough away with one outside the fence or in another room, get your lead on it. If you are alone during a dog fight, use your lead to go around the dogs stomach and cinch it around the dogs back loins. Anchor that lead to a tree or close a door on it to anchor it. Once its anchored, grab the other dogs back legs and pull them apart. Again, once they are separated, walk the dog in circles as you back up. This is the easiest method and the best method to not get bit. Try to stay calm the best you can!
The question has come up about what we think about dog parks. Our opinion for a working dog breed with high drives is to be very cautious. There are many stories about dogs fighting or dogs picking up an illness from those parks. Even with a best behaved, high drive dog, a dog fight is still possible. The dogs need to be introduced properly and not just thrown together. Most owners of a working breed know weather their dog will play nice or if the dog can not interact with other dogs. You need to be cautious of the other dogs as you do not know their training or temperament. Dog parks can be a great tool for training with distractions!
We are about to add to our agility course to start offering classes. We are going to be adding a cat walk, A frame, a window jump, a crawl, and possibly more. We typically use tennis balls to get our dogs through our course. Sometimes we need to start very small and work the dog up to the actual course. Some dogs need to learn how to jump over things, as funny as that sounds. In this case, we start very low and work our way higher. We make sure the dogs are having fun. As with everything we do, it's all a game for the dogs and we do many repetitions. Some dogs need to build up their confidence to get through the course. An agility course is not only good exercise but good mental stimulation too. We always end on a positive note.
We have been made aware today that someone is claiming to have a litter of Dutch Shepherd puppies that had been whelped by OUR Vandalia Sago sometime in December of 2016. This person advertised on Craigslist in the Phoenix Arizona area. We have not been able to locate this post but they were claiming the litter was whelped by Sago and were selling the pups for $300. This litter was not whelped by Sago! This person or person's took the picture of Sago from when we bought her from Vandalia Kennels. We truly hate that the individuals that bought these puppies think that they came from Sago and really have no idea as to who the Dam really is.
Please, weather you buy a dog or puppy from us or someone else, do your research! Ask questions if the dog or litter is registered, ask to see the Dam and/or Sire, ask for more pictures of everyone. The breeder should happily provide you with any and all the information that you need!
Do you use cues to let your dog know what is coming next? I like to use verbal and equipment cues to let our dogs know what is going to be expected of them next. An example of a equipment cue would be only putting a harness on your dog if you're going to be tracking a subject. Through training the dog knows when the harness is on means we are going to be tracking soon. Another equipment cue is changing the lead over to the dead ring on the dogs choke chain. I have done this when it was time to do an article search. Another example is when a flat collar goes on, it is time to do bite work. Verbal cues can be as simple as saying, "You want to go find some dope." By saying this before giving the command, the dog learns that the next command is going to be to start sniffing for drugs. These cues can be given to your dog when you get him/her out to do what ever task you want him/her to do.
We are switching our dogs to a new higher quality food this week. There are two methods on how to switch food for dogs. One is the hard switch which is just switching the old food out with the new food. This method sometimes causes stomach problems and loose stools. The other method is to gradually switch to the new food. We do the gradual method here. This method eases the dog into the new food and is less likely to cause stomach problems. We gradually add the new food to the current food and increase the new food over five to seven days, until the dog is getting only the new food. This is what has worked the best for us but I know the hard switch has worked well for others.