Tag Archives: Canine

Tampa Dog Trainer: What’s My Dog Motivation?

Border Collie Licking FaceWhat’s My Dog’s Motivation?

You can’t choose what motivates your dog. By Brenna Fender

When I first got my Beagle from Tampa Bay Beagle rescue, I had to carry him off of his comfy spot on the sofa to deliver him to his crate every time I left the house. My other dogs all ran to their crates when cued in order to enjoy a bite of cheese, but Wrigley didn’t move a muscle. He knew what to do because I had already taught the “go kennel” behavior. He also liked cheese. But he still didn’t get off the sofa to go get his treat.

Why not?

Because the comfort of the sofa was more powerful than the taste of cheese.

Wrigley, was not stupid or willfully disobeying me. He simply liked the sofa more than he liked the cheese. How could I (or you) handle a problem like this?

• Try a variety of treats and rank the rewards by how much the dog seems to enjoy them. Any food that’s safe for dogs to eat can be used as a treat. Different kinds of meat, from cold cuts to hot dogs to chicken, all kinds of cheese, leftover pasta, and more…. Be creative! See if you can find a high-value treat that will motivate your dog to get off the couch (or do whatever it is you want him to do).

• Make his crate extra comfortable so that there won’t be such a discrepancy between the value of the crate and the value of the couch.

• Play games with the crate that involve going in the crate for treats and then immediately being released so he gets lots of food rewards for an investment of very little crate time. Thinking that he might only have to spend a little time in his crate might make exiting the sofa worth it.

Many trainers who compete in dog sports have chosen dogs that like to work and that find these activities inherently rewarding. They like moving and love working with their trainers. These dogs would trade a sofa, no matter how comfortable, for anything that involves activity. But I’m willing to bet that at least some of you have dogs that might prefer the sofa to the A-frame, to competitive obedience training, or even to coming when called. You have to think outside the box to find out what motivates your particular dog. It might be steak, or lasagna, or a squirt of spray cheese; it might be a tennis ball that squeaks, or a stuffed animal, or a rope to tug on; it might be a squirt with a hose, a game of fetch, or a toss of a flying disc.

It’s been years since my Beagle chose the couch over his crate. By combining the methods mentioned here, he now runs right to his kennel with the rest of the dog family. It can be a lot of work discovering what motivates your dog, but it’ll be worth it.

Happy Crate Training!

Brenna Fender is a Tampa Dog Trainer who writes for Courteous Canine, Inc. and attends dog sport classes at our main location! Courteous Canine, Inc. offers puppy kindergarten classes, basic manners, canine good citizen and pet therapy prep, agility, dog dock jumping, problem solving and behavior modification especially for aggressive dogs.  We also offer boutique boarding, board and train, pet sitting and dog day care!

Courteous Canine Pet Care Services Tampa– Programs For Every Occasion!

Courteous Canine, Inc. offers pet sitting services in the Lutz, Land O Lakes, Wesley Chapel and New Tampa areas! All our pet care technicians are pet first aid certified and will handle your pets with lot of love.  

While you are away from your home, you can choose from

In home Pet Care Florida

  1. Courteous Canine Visit (Home Alone) – A Courteous Canine Pet Care Technician visits your pet in your home. A 30 minute visit to entertain, exercise or feed pets while the owner is away. We can also empty and clean litter trays. Available to all domestic pets. 1 to 5 visits per day. 1 Visit is only recommended if connected to an overnight pet sitting agreement or with an animal that has access to a safe outside area. Additional cost per dog over 2 dogs.
  2. Courteous Canine Sleep Over – A Courteous Canine Pet Care Technician stays in your home with your pets.The pet sitter stays at the home of the pet. The service time is agreed with the client but normally starts at 7pm and concludes at 7am.
  3. Courteous Canine Slumber Party – Your pet stays in the home of a Courteous Canine Pet Care Technician. The pet stays at the home of a Courteous Canine Technician and enjoys the comfort and environment of a private home and family. The rate covers a 24 hour period.

Client Loves Courteous Canine Group Classes Tampa Florida

Hi all!!!
I just wanted to pop you guys a quick note to say a big THANK YOU, and especially Pam for doing such a fantastic job with your basic dog manners class. My 8-month old puppy Molly and I just finished our six week course, and we had such a great time, and learned SO MUCH. Molly is a better behaved and sweeter dog than she was before the class, and I know that I personally have been provided with a great foundation to model my own behavior better to bring out the best in her!
Another happy client for Courteous Canine

Another happy client for Courteous Canine

Pam was informative, relaxed and lots of fun to work with, and I can’t tell you how pleased we have been with our interaction with her.

We’re going to take some time off to enjoy what’s left of Molly’s puppyhood, but we are planning on enrolling in therapy dog training after the 1st of the year. We have a few things that we need to work on, but I know she’ll be ready based on the great foundation we have had with Courteous Canine so far.
Again, THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU and please do not hesitate to contact me if you ever need any references!
JD. Tampa, FL 
Come join us at Courteous Canine, Inc. for your dog’s next group class.  We offer classes at three locations in the Tampa, FL area.  For more information contact us www.CourteousCanine.com  

Heads up!!! Coyote Alert Tampa Dog and Cat Owners Beware!

Coyote Alert: Avoid Walking Pets Under 10 Pounds at Dusk and Dawn

Coyotes are a danger to dogs being walked

Coyotes are a danger to dogs being walked

Coyotes are moving from hunting and killing feral cats to small dogs. The Trapper Guy of Tampa Bay states that he is receiving a call a month to come to the New Tampa area to trap coyotes that have grabbed, killed and eaten small dogs. Common facts to the incidents are walking the dog at dusk or dawn and more importantly using a retractable leash. Apparently using a retractable leash is the same as using your dog for fishing bait, except the coyote is the fish. If your dog is attacked survival is highly unlikely. Courteous Canine, Inc. advocates against the use of retractable leashes (they cause rope burns and make controlling your dog difficult) but now there is another reason not to use them they could be a factor in causing the death of your pet. Courteous Canine, Inc. also recommends that small dogs not be left outside unsupervised and that dusk and dawn potty times be on leash only.

 Happy SAFE walking, The Staff of Courteous Canine, Inc.

Courteous Canine, Inc. offers in home pet care, dog training and boarding in the Tampa, FL area.  Contact us at www.CourteousCanine.com

Courteous Canine, Inc. Staff Member Scott Baggett Becomes Pet Partner Instructor

Pet Therapy DVD Pictures 013In the world of pet therapy Pet Partners offers the most rigorous standards and the best training for pet therapy teams. Our staff member Scott Baggett who was already a Pet Partner Evaluator enabling him to test pet therapy teams for certification, is now an instructor.  This means that pet therapy teams will be able to opt to train with him in person to prep for the Pet Partner test instead of completing an online course.  There are only a handful of instructors in the entire state of Florida so we are very lucky to have Scott available to us.  For more info please contact Scott at william.baggett2@me.com.