Goodbye, 2012!

We couldn't have asked for more in 2012! It's been a busy year, and we spent our time doing tons of training and a lot of driving for evaluations. From The New England Pet Expo to this fall's German Shepherd Rescue event, it was a pleasure to meet dog owners in Mass and New Hampshire with big training goals.

Our proudest achievement was the work we did with aggressive dogs. We worked with vets and owners to make dogs with aggression issues healthy and happy again. You can read more about these success stories in
this post.

One of the biggest keys to stopping these kinds of behavior issues
before they start is by giving your dog a strong foundation in obedience. Lately we've had the chance to work with more and more puppy and adult dogs in on and off-leash obedience. We train all breeds, aggressive or not. Here are some of the different dogs we've worked with in recent weeks:

Koda is an absolutely beautiful red/rust colored Doberman from Exeter, NH. We've watched him transform from a dog afraid to enter the training room to a dog who can genuinely focus on (and enjoy) a learning environment. One of the biggest obstacles we faced with Koda is that he loves his owners too much! Instead of board & train, they wanted to attend classes with Koda so that they'd be able to absorb training knowledge and bring it home. At first, Koda was much more interested in looking at mommy than learning to lie down and stay. Khaled was able to build a rapport with Koda and make him a more alert and accepting dog. We're looking forward to continued progress in 2013!

This beautiful Doberman, Koda, is an Exeter, NH dog with us for off-leash obedience training.
Koda attends one of our dog training classes in Brentwood, NH

Brooklyn is a really sweet Lab/Pit mix from Brighton, MA. Her owners brought her for off-leash obedience board & train and to prevent aggression issues. We used her love of running to keep training sessions fun, and we were very impressed by how quickly her owners picked up on the training techniques.

Belle is the oldest dog we remember training at 10 years old. She's doing a good job of disproving the notion that you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Right now we're doing training classes to stop her barking and growling habits. While some owners compromise on their dog's behavior, Belle's would rather be able to have a hassle-free life with their dog.

Eve is a rescue Lab mix from Sudbury, MA. Her owners' experience is not uncommon: their dog would act aggressively toward people who seemed timid. While we're not sure why anyone would be afraid of a dog like Eve, we worked with her in various situations to make sure she shows her loving side to everyone. Eve is a "leaner"- which is to say that she's happiest when she's pressed up against a human's side. Her playfulness has been a great asset in the training room and she's now very accepting of all people. She responds to off-leash obedience commands very quickly!

Brewster is a young Chocolate Lab from Reading, MA. Since he'll be sharing his home with 2 adult humans and 4 children, his owners wanted to set him up for success by nipping his "mouthing" issues in the bud. Brewster is currently enrolled in our On & Off-Leash Obedience Board & Train program.

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Inuyasha is brand new to First Choice Canine's ranks, but he's certainly worth mentioning…he's a Dingo! Well, not a real Australian Dingo, but an American Dingo (also known as a Carolina Dog). DNA tests of these North Carolina dogs have shown a strong link to very primitive bloodlines, and they do in fact look like Australian Dingos. Inuyasha's owners have noticed aggression issues that they want to control, and we'll be giving their dog On & Off-Leash obedience training in our Board & Train program.

Off-Leash Obedience Training is a Must

If you're someone who doesn't plan on taking their dog around town off leash, you may not have given much thought to off-leash training for your dog.

After all, Massachusetts leash laws and other restrictions can make the idea of taking your dog off leash a scary one. But even if you don't ever plan on walking your dog off leash outside there are major benefits to training your dog off-leash.

Off-leash training gives you control over your dog in any situation. In the house, we don't normally have our dogs on leash. Yet with off-leash obedience, your dog will be able to follow your commands from the other room. For example, we teach a "place" command that will tell your dog to go to its kennel, bed, or other designated place and lie down until you tell them to break the command. This is great for when guests come over and you don't want your dog all over them: simply give the "place" command and your pet will lie low for a bit. Your guests will be impressed- especially the allergic ones!

Giving your dog the best off-leash training possible will help to eliminate bad behaviors and prevent new ones from forming. Why worry about behavior modification in the future when you can form good habits today? Many dogs like to do things like bark at the door or jump on guests. With off-leash obedience training you will be able to override their actions by telling them to sit or lie down on command.

Off-leash obedience training comes in handy for more than just day-to-day scenarios. Having off-leash control is critical in an unexpected situation. Our clients have had their dogs' training save the day in many instances, such as preventing dog fights or being able to call back runaway dogs. Knowing that at any moment you can call your dog right back to your side is great peace of mind.

Our Off-Leash Obedience program is more advanced than On-Leash Obedience and you can expect remarkable results. If you do choose to take your dog off-leash outdoors, feel confident knowing that your dog will come back and heel when called, lie down when you tell them to (even from a distance!) and listen to your every command even in a distracting situation.

For more information regarding our Off-Leash Obedience program,
contact us today or read more about our Training Programs.