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Pitbull Toys – 1 Toy Your Dog Can’t Destroy includes a Lifetime Warranty

Pitbull Toys - GoughNuts MAXX50

Here are 5 of the most indestructible dog toys for pit bulls:

Finding the most durable pitbull toys is a hit or miss and usually ends with torn bits and pieces all over the place. What’s worse, a bad quality toy could end up sending your pit bull to the emergency room!

The search is finally over.

Here we’ve compiled a list of five of the highest rated, and most trusted dog toys for really aggressive chewers. If your dog can chew through these, then perhaps only steel belted radials would do.

1. KONG Extreme

KONG is the original ‘tough as nails’ chew toy, and probably one of the most recognized and respected dog toy brands. Their reputation has certainly been paid for through their own merit. These are some seriously tough toys.

Having been on the market for over 40 years now, the KONG classic is still a top favorite among dog owners. With its signature hard to reach treat chamber, this toy is guaranteed to keep your dog busy for hours on end. Stuff it with treats, cheese, or even freeze in a block of water. This dog toy is extremely versatile.

Rated at a very strong 4.4 stars on Amazon, this is one of the best toys for aggressive chewers, and is an awesome bargain at a paltry $11.00.

Get it in only 2 days with Amazon Prime! Link to Buy it now on Amazon

2. GoughNuts Indestructible Chew Toy MAXX

Number two on our list is the GoughNuts MAXX. This one is the original Chew Ring (donut) line designed and made right here in the US. This is an extremely tough chew toy. Also  The specially formulated rubber inside of the GoughNuts is designed so you’ll never have to worry about losing this thing in the bottom of a pond or a pool, IT FLOATS!

Watch the demo video below. At around 3 minutes, they use it to lift a 2 ton pickup truck… Try doing that with any other chew toy!

The Chew Ring is recommended by law enforcement for really strong dogs or dogs who have a history of destroying lower quality toys.

The GoughNuts measures 5″ x 5″ x 2.5″. This thing is HUGE! Almost 2.5 x larger than the Kong!

The best part is that GoughNuts offers a lifetime guarantee promising to replace it if your dog does the impossible and destroys it.

GoughNuts Guarantee: If your dog chews through the outside layer to expose the red layer, GoughNuts will replace your toy!”.

Rated at 4.3 stars on Amazon, this chew toy sells at $32.93. A great value considering the durability of the toy and the lifetime guarantee offered by GoughNuts.

Buy it for life… this will probably be the last chew toy you’ll ever buy.

Buy it Now on Amazon and Get 2 day Shipping with Prime

Watch this promotional video from GoughNuts:

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Do you still need more reasons to buy the GoughNuts TODAY?

Check out these glowing reviews from other Pitbull owners:

Amazon REview - GoughNuts MAXX50 Pitbull Toys

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Pitbull Toys - GoughNuts


3. GoughNuts MAXX Black Stick

GoughNuts is a relative newcomer to the chew toy marketplace. However, they’re certainly making a splash with their line of extremely durable (if not completely indestructible) rubber chew toys. The MAXX black stick model’s durability makes for a really tough throw toy for those dogs that like to play fetch.

GoughNuts is so confident that their product will withstanding the most vicious chewers, that they’re offering a complete lifetime guarantee.

According to their website: GoughNuts Guarantee: If your dog chews through the outside layer to expose the red layer, GoughNuts will replace your toy!”.

Rated at an average of 3.9 stars on Amazon, this product is currently retailing for $27.95 on Amazon. Which isn’t bad, considering that it may be the last chew toy you buy.

Buy it now on Amazon

4. Nylabone Dura Chew

Nylabone is another highly recognizable, tried and true brand. Offering an excellent and irresistible product at a very economical price.

The Dura Chew model comes in different flavors including Chicken, Peanut Butter, and Bacon. These are the kind of toys that’ll keep any heavy chewer at bay. Though not nearly as indestructible as the GoughNuts or the KONG, these toys do last for a very long time, and as an added bonus, the flavors are irresistible to most dogs.

Rated at an outstanding 4.3 stars by Amazon buyers, the Nylabone is a great buy at $8.31.

Buy it now on Amazon

5. West Paw Zogoflex

West Paw, like GoughNuts is also a relative newcomer to the chew toy market.

Offering a variety of shapes and sizes, this company is starting to really turn heads with their unique designs, and product warranty.

West Paw stands by their product, guaranteeing it for life against any and all pet damage.

Rated at 4.2 stars and priced at $14.95 this product is real a steal!

Buy it now on Amazon


NamePriceRatingGuaranteeBest Deal
Goughnuts - Indestructible Chew Toy MAXX
KONG Extreme
$11.00 No
GoughNuts MAXX Black Stick
Nylabone Dura Chew
West Paw Zogoflex

Are you a Pitbull owner and recommend another toy?

Let us know in the comment section below.

Read our other review:

Best Deshedder for Dogs

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6 Reasons Your Dog Still Pulls on Leash – And an Easy Way to Stop It


When I first got my dog, I had so many things that I needed to get done being a new pet owner. I have a lot of love for my dog and I look for all the right things to provide the proper care and training. What I didn’t think about is training her on a leash. So I struggled with her always pulling when we would go out for walks. Here are some tips that I found that could help train dogs on leashes.

1) Start Early

It’s always best to start training them when they are still puppies. Before letting them roam out in the wild, start them off in a controlled environment, indoors and off the leash. Teaching them to be next to us while walking is a great way to prevent early stages of pulling on leashes.

2) Encouragement

Encouraging my dog with a pet and a treat helps her understand that good behavior will have rewards. How to stop a dog from pulling on leash, there needs to be praise from us with an encouraging “yes” so that our dog’s are aware of what they are doing right.

3) Stop Always Saying “No”

As I’ve stated before, encouraging is the best way to train so that we get the best behavior from our dogs. Instead of always saying no, treat them when they are doing what we want them to do so it shows proper encouragement to keep doing what we want them to do.

4) Don’t Be in such a Rush

One of the most significant reasons that a dog pulls on leash is when we take them out for walks and they want to pull us in every direction possible because of all the smells they encounter. How to stop dog from pulling on leash is by allowing them some time to wander and receive all these different smells left behind. The best way to train them not to pull on the harness is by teaching them to look back at us first to get permission that going over to that area is okay.

5) Be Gentle

When a dog pulls on leash we automatically want to pull them back to us but that can cause some harm to our pets. How to stop dog from pulling on leash we should gently tug them back to get their attention to come back to our direction. We shouldn’t pull them back aggressively because it would hurt our dogs and we wouldn’t get the right response from them.

6) The Right Equipment

Picking out the best equipment for our dogs is crucial to their wellbeing. Choosing the proper harness can help prevent any damage to our dogs when they do start to pull. The best kind to use is the Freedom Harness where it has a proper fit around the dogs body instead of just around the neck so it is comfortable for them. As dog lovers, we should find ways that can better our pets lives and by giving them encouragement, love and care we are able to not only train them the right way but have a great connection with them.

Best No Pull Dog Harness

This is the absolute best in preventing or assisting in training your dog to no pull on the leash. This really easy to use, and human training harness attaches the lead to the front part of the chest, unlike other harness that attached behind the shoulders. The moment your dog tries to take the lead and walk in front of your, the leash simply spins the dog right around to face you. Just make sure you keep enough slack in the front part of the harness to keep it comfortable for your furry little friend.

Easy, humane, and bottom line… it works.

No-Pull Easy Dog Walking Harness

best no pull dog harness

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Male vs Female German Shepherd – Which is right for you?

Male vs Female German Shepherd

First things first…

If you’re getting ready to purchase or adopt a GSD, you may be wondering whether the difference between a male vs female German Shepherd puppy. Their differences are important.

First, it is important to understand that every dog has its own personality outside of their breed and gender characteristics.

For instance, you could have two wildly variant personalities even amongst siblings raised in the same environment. So making a generalization of how your dog will turn out based on gender is… just that… a generalization. With that disclaimer out of the way, let’s talk about the general characteristics and differences between male and female German Shepherd Dogs (GSD).

Male vs Female German Shepherd Comparison

General Characteristics of Male German Shepherd Dogs:

  • Male GSD’s tend to hoard and guard their toys and food when they’re mis-trained. This is an important characteristic of the breed that is crucial to recognize and strive to keep them from developing this tendency.
  • Male German Shepherd Dogs have very dominant personalities especially in the absence of a strong “pack leader” or Alpha. When this happens, they basically do what they want, when they want.
  • They can be very territorial over their “owner” or “master” against strangers. They generally love the rest of the family equally, only that it’s more pronounced over their “master”.
  • Male GSD tend to bond the most to one person in the family over others. This person is usually the person that trains them, or feeds them.
  • Males are typically better as personal “security” dogs.
  • Male GSD are usually larger and heavier than their female GSD counterparts.

General Characteristics of Female German Shepherd Dogs:

  • Female GSD’s are less likely than males to hoard or guard their possessions or food from other members of the family.
  • Females can also become dominant in the absence of a pack leader or alpha, only less pronounced than with male GSD.
  • Female German Shepherds can be less territorial than males when protecting their homes and family.
  • They also bond to a particular person in the family, but are also loving with the others.
  • Female GSD are typically better as “whole house” security dogs as they are emotionally attached to all members of the family and not just one.
  • They are more sensitive than males, and can therefore respond better to training for agility, and show obstacles.
  • Females are great with children, and are somewhat tolerant with strangers.
  • Females are usually smaller than Male GSD.

Okay, so which should I get?

Well… that all depends. Will your dog be a working dog? A family pet? A guard dog?

These are all critical questions that need to be answered before choosing the sex of your GSD.

Clearly the differences per the lists above explain how Males are better suited as working dogs, particularly as personal protective companions. Females on the other hand seem to make better family pets. They’re more docile, easier to train (if you’re not a professional), and more tolerant of children and strangers.

Finally, if you’re a first time GSD owner, then I would highly recommend a Female, again for their ease of training and docility. On the other hand, if you’re an experienced GSD owner, and would like to train your GSD for personal protection or as a working dog, then get a Male.

For more information on GSD’s, check out this community:

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Differences Between Male and Female Dogs

male vs female dogs

So you’re ready to adopt a new puppy or dog but there are so many breed options and not to mention choosing the sex of the dog. This guide can help to explain the main similarities and difference between male and female puppies.

Male vs Female Dogs

  • Some male dogs are very stable and are not as emotional as female dogs.
  • When your puppy is not neutered or spayed, the puppy may be emotional, regardless of sex, because they are still intact. They may try to dominate the owner more so than if they were spayed or neutered.
  • Whether or not your male dog is fixed, they may still have tendencies to want to lift their leg and urinate to mark their territory. Female dogs generally have less of an urge to mark their territory and thus can be easier to toilet train.
  • Speaking of training, it is thought that since female dogs tend to reach maturity quicker than male dogs, they are easier to train sooner. This does not mean that male dogs cannot be trained easier, it just means that you can start training female dogs earlier with positive results.
  • Female dogs have also been linked with higher cognitive abilities, meaning they are more mentally sharp and have better sight than male dogs. Male dogs, on the other hand, are better with smelling and tracking than female dogs.
  • Remember that a female dog that is not fixed will go into heat twice a year. This could lead to unwanted pregnancies or messes around your home. It is suggested to get female dogs fixed at an early age to avoid heat and other emotional issues.

Other Factors to Keep in Mind

The difference between male and female puppies are important to understand, but there are also other factors that contribute to a dog’s behavior. The type of breed may contribute to a dog’s behavior and their ability to be easily trained. Some breeds’ behavior may be vastly different from another just because they were bred for a different purpose.

In addition, the amount of training and the environment that the dog is in may contribute to their temperament. You should make sure to give your male or female dog the proper training, attention, and love in order to get the best out of your new furry friend. You should also make sure to read up on your dog’s breed to understand how best to train them.

This guide should adequately prepare you for what to expect when choosing between a male vs female dogs by showing you the important differences between the sexes. In addition to the behavioral differences, you should pay attention to the type of breed and also the environment that you raise the dog in. In summary, while a dog’s sex may help contribute to its ability to be trained more easily, and the breed of the dog can have certain traits, it really is about the nurturing environment that you provide to your dog.

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How to Help Your Dog With Their Separation Anxiety

Separation Anxiety Cures

If you have a dog that worries as you leave the house, destroys things while you are gone, sticks to your heels as you move between rooms, goes berserk when you return, and looks at you suspiciously before you even leave, then there’s a good chance your dog has separation anxiety.

A dog with separation anxiety will exhibit behavior problems and stress if left by themselves. The following are the most common behaviors of an anxious dog:

  • Destructive chewing
  • Scratching and digging at doors and windows in an attempt to reunite with owners
  • Barking, whining, and howling
  • Urinating and defecating – particularly if they are house-trained

The Causes of Separation Anxiety

Unfortunately we don’t know just what causes some dogs to have separation anxiety while other dogs don’t. It’s important to remember that the reason your dog behaves how they do is because they are panicking. They aren’t punishing you, they just panic and want you to return to them.

The following are some of the potential triggers of separation anxiety:

  • The first time they are left by themselves
  • Being left by themselves after getting used to people always being around
  • Going through a traumatic experience, such as being left at a shelter or boarding kennel
  • A change in the structure or routine of the family, including losing family members or other pets

Treating Minor Separation Anxiety

  • Avoid making a big fuss out of every departure and arrival – ignore the dog for a few minutes and then pet them calmly
  • Leave the dog with some clothes you wore recently that smell like you
  • Establish an action or command/word that you can use when leaving the house that lets your dog know you’ll be back soon
  • Consider getting an over-the-counter product for calming your dog and reducing anxiety

Handling Severe Separation Anxiety

Use a combination of the above techniques and desensitization training. Teach the dog to sit and stay and lay down and stay with positive reinforcement. This helps teach the dog that they can be happy and calm in one room by themselves as you move to another.

Consider creating a “safe place” that limits how much damage the dog can do in your absence. This safe place needs to@

  • Loosely confine the dog – it should be a room with a window and some toys; don’t completely isolate the dog
  • Have busy toys the dog can use as a distraction
  • Have dirty laundry that offers a calming scent or some other safety cues that relax your dog

Coping While Your Dog is Calming

The unlearning process is a long one and it can take a while for your dog to move past their panic responses. The following are some solutions to consider to help both you and your dog cope for the short term:

  • Ask your vet about relieving anxiety through drug therapy
  • Leave your dog with a kennel or doggie day care when you go away
  • Leave your dog with another family member or friend when you leave
  • If it’s possible, then you can take your dog to work

What to Avoid

  • Punishment

Punishing the dog for their anxiety won’t help at all. If anything, it will just make your dog more anxious and make everything worse

  • Getting Another Dog

Getting a companion for your dog is usually not good for helping an anxious dog. This is because they are anxious about you leaving. It doesn’t have anything to do being alone.

  • Crating

Even if you crate your dog it will still display anxious responses. It can cause them to howl, defecate, urinate, and potentially even injure themselves in an attempt to get out of the crate and back to you. There are other safe spaces you should be creating, following the above advice.

  • Background Noise

Turning the radio or TV on doesn’t help relax a dog unless the sound is used as one of their safety cues

  • Obedience Training

Even though formal training can be a good idea, there’s no disobedience involved in separation anxiety, nor is it a lack of training.

Please consult a professional animal behavior specialist if you require further assistance resolving separation anxiety or any other issues your dog has.


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How to: Deal with a Picky Dog Eaters


What could it be? Chances are that it’s a bad habit…

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, your dog just refuses to eat their dinner. And it really is hard to explain, are they sick, did they eat something they shouldn’t have? Maybe they’re just a bit depressed. Who knows really, but sometimes dogs become finicky with their food, without any real explanation.

Our puppy, ate voraciously for the first two years of her puppy-hood, but ever since she turned two, she stopped and has become a lot more selective with her food. Sometime she’ll skip a meal altogether. However, the moment she hears the fridge cheese drawer open, she’s already there waiting for a treat. The truth is that our bad habits can create this condition.

So, what do you do with a finicky dog? Here are a few steps that you can take to prevent it, and recondition your dog to eat their food without much fuss.

1. Stick with a feeding window

Allow sufficient time for your dog to eat it’s food (30 mins or so), and if they don’t eat it, then put it up. This will create the condition of  eating under a schedule, and a bit of pressure. Don’t worry about the dog skipping a meal, they will not starve. Simply, have the discipline to instill discipline on your dog. If they skip a meal, they’ll be hungry enough to scarf down their food next time you put down the plate.

2. Have a dedicated mealtime that doesn’t correspond with yours

If you’re the kind of loving pet owner that feeds their dogs off the table during dinner, then expect your dog to have irregular eating times. Or skipping their kibble altogether. No dog food in the world will compare to your family’s steak dinner, and so they’ll always prefer eating that to their plain, ol’ boring kibble. Train your dog by breaking this habit of begging for food during dinner time by having a set time either before or after your own dinner for the dog to eat. Also, stop feeding them off the table.

3. Be consistent

Create lasting habits for your pet. Feed them and take them out at the same time each day so that they’re can associate a time of day with these actions. If the dog has an irregular feeding schedule, then their body will never know to trigger their hunger instincts to let the know that it’s time to eat. If it’s once or twice a day, feed them at the same time consistently, and you’ll find that when it’s mealtime, your dog will be asking for their food.

4. Garnish it!

To help kick off all of these healthy habits try adding flavorful garnishes to their boring ‘ol kibble. Try adding a splash of chicken or beef stock directly to the kibble, or maybe a bit of rice flavored with chicken or beef stock. Whatever it is, only add things that wouldn’t throw the balance of the formulated kibble out of kilter. Nothing too protein heavy, or starch heavy. Add just enough flavor to entice the dog’s appetite.

As a loving pet owner, it’s difficult to deny your dog food. Especially, when they give you those sad, teary puppy-dog eyes. But for the sake of their health, we must. After all, it is our responsibility to instill healthy habits, and conditions that will allow us all happily and healthily coexist.

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4 Signs Your Dog is Depressed & Solutions

Signs your dog is depressed

Dog Depression is Real, experts say.

Dogs are very emotionally varied animals experiencing a range of emotions as complex as a 2 or 3 year old child. Although, depression is not typical of a child, it is not uncommon among dogs. It could be a change of setting, or that you’ve moved into a new house that triggered it. Or it could be that the newest addition to the family, a baby perhaps, has changed the social dynamic of the family. You may notice that out of nowhere, your dog is suddenly acting strange, and perhaps a bit lazier than usual, or maybe even restless. All of these could be signs your dog is depressed. In fact, symptoms of depression in dogs are very similar to those in humans.

Here are a few signs of Dog Depression

Sudden Loss of Appetite

When dogs undergo a traumatic experience in their lives, a lot of times their reaction will be a sudden loss of appetite. They’ll lose interest in their food, or in their drinking water. However, I must add that it is important to not confuse dog depression with an actual ailment or disease. Other illnesses could also result in loss of appetite. Therefore I recommend that you take your dog to the veterinarian to correctly diagnose the issue. One way to quickly find out is by trying to peak your dog’s interest in food, by tempting them with something extremely flavorful to them, like chicken or beef broth. If suddenly, their appetite returns, then you know that they’re probably just acting out their depression by a lack of interest in their regular food.

Prolonged Sleeping & Lethargy

In this case, it is also very important to correctly diagnose the problem. As stated before, lethargy and extreme sleeping could be signs your dog is depressed, but are also common symptoms in serious dog illnesses. Lethargy, is often times accompanied by a loss of appetite, and loss of appetite continues to exacerbate the lethargy. Weakness from a lack of appetite begets the sleeping and lethargy. In this case it is important to ensure that your dog is eating well and drinking lots of fluids. Introducing flavorful foods, and adding a bit of chicken or beef broth to their water bowl, for example, may entice them to eat. Also, try doing things that you know your dog loves. Like going out for a car ride, or taking them out to a park. That can also trigger their thirst or hunger mechanism, and get them to snap out of their lethargy.


Indifference and lack of interest are both signs your dog is depressed. Both are a very unusual characteristic for dogs, who usually love to please their humans. Again, just like all the other symptoms on this article, indifference can be confused with lethargy, and vice versa. Lethargy is a common symptom with other more serious dog illnesses that need urgent diagnosis and treatment. I highly recommend that you consult a veterinarian if the symptom persists. Otherwise, indifference much like lethargy can be treated similarly. Entice your dog’s attention with their favorite treat or toy and get them to do something they love, or getting them excited to do something with you like playing fetch outside. The trick here is to get them to snap out of it.

Aversion, or Shyness

Sometimes dogs cope with loss, depression, or sadness much like a lot of us do. We curl up in our beds and sleep it off. If you notice that your dog is avoiding contact with you and is hiding in an unusual corner of house, you may want to first check with your vet to rule out any serious disease or injury. Otherwise, your dog may be acting out their depression by choosing to be alone while they cope. Again, here like in the other symptoms, you may want to treat them to something that you know they love. Entice them out of hiding by serving them their favorite treat, or by jingling your car keys signaling a car ride to the park. If your dog is avoiding a particular member of the family over others, then a more serious problem may be afoot.

Like in most situations, self diagnosing yourself is as dangerous as self diagnosing a member of your family. Simply put, don’t do it. If any of these symptoms persists, I implore you to seek a veterinary professional. These may all be signs your dog is depressed, but be aware that these symptoms are also shared with other serious illnesses.

If you would like to learn more about dog emotions, and behavior, I highly recommend this book:

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How to: Train Dog to Pick up Toys

Train Dog to Pick up Toys

Are you someone that finds themselves spending ages cleaning away after your dog and putting their toys away? Dogs are just like kids in the way that they take out every toy they have and leave them all over the house to make a huge mess that someone has to clean up.

If you’re tired of cleaning up after your dog then why not get them to clean up after themselves? It’s good for both you and your dog because:

·         Cleaning expends energy

·         It makes him think which can also make him tired

·         It gives him something to do. If your dog won’t stop bothering you then get him to do something else by commanding him to pick up his toys.

It can be a little complicated to get your dog to do this, and it’s best if your dog is already good at fetching. If your dog isn’t much of a fetcher then teach him to pick up the toys first. This does make the process longer though. We’ll be assuming your dog is already good at fetching in this article.

What you Need
·         A box for the toys

·         Some of your dog’s favorite toys

·         A clicker

·         Treats

Train your Dog to Pick Up Toys

Step 1; Target the Box

Start by putting the box nearby because your dog is used to bringing things to you and then toss the toy. If your dog needs a cue to go fetch then use it, but there’s no real need to.

When your dog fetches the toy and starts to bring it back you need to point at the box. There’s no need for verbal cues just yet. If the dog takes the hint and puts the toy away then use the clicker or say “Good” and put some treats in the box to show the dog how important the box is.

If the dog fails to put the toy in the box then don’t say anything. Just throw the toy again and give it another go. This time you should place the box between yourself and the dog to give him a stronger hint the toy belongs in the box.

Step 2; Proofing

Now you need to ensure that the dog understands that they get a treat when the toy goes in the box. After he starts dropping the toy in the box at least 80% of the time you need to move the box a few inches away from you to test if he will still use the box.

If your dog still uses the box 80% of the time you can move the box a little further away. If not then just bring the box in a little because he wasn’t ready for the change just yet. Don’t forget to put the reward for your dog in the box!

Step 3; Picking Toys up off the Floor

After you’ve trained your dog to target the box you need to stop throwing the toy. Now you just leave the toy on the floor near the box. If you’ve done everything properly your dog should be able to tell he’ll get a reward if the toy goes in the box.

If he hasn’t gotten the message just yet then throw the toy a little bit to move him towards a stationary toy.

Step 4; Adding the Cue

After your dog is picking up and packing away stationary toys you’re ready to introduce a verbal command such as “clean up”, “clean house” or “pick up toys”. Of course you can use any verbal cue you want. Those are just some suggestions.

Step 5; Add More Toys

Your dog should be cleaning up on cue now so it’s time to add toys. Start out by giving your dog the cue and then rewarding him for cleaning up one toy. Then put out two toys and don’t reward him until he’s put both away. Your dog will likely look for something else that needs to be done in order to get that elusive reward. With luck he’ll be smart enough to realise he needs to put the other toy away; at which point you can reward him handsomely.

Keep adding toys one at a time. By the time your dog is cleaning up six or seven toys at once he should have grasped that he needs to pack away all of his toys before he can get his reward.

If your dog isn’t grasping picking up that second toy then put it closer to the box or throw it a little like you did when you first started training him. If you have a treat dispenser such as the AutoTrainer then you can put that in the box so that the training goes smoother.

The point is that the dog should enjoy performing this trick. You can take a little break if your dog begins to get frustrated. Give them a break before going back to the training. Keep in mind this is also an advanced trick that can take a few weeks to master. It’s definitely a good trick for your dog to know though and is a fun way to spend time with him when the weather is too bad to go outside.

For dog behavioral training this handy little tool will make it much, much easier. Designed on the principles of operant and classical conditioning, once you’ve started clicker training, you’ll never go back. I promise.

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How to: Be Dog Pack Leader

Be Dog Pack Leader

Be in Control – Assert yourself

Sometimes, the biggest problems with dog behavior stems from the dog’s owners themselves. Not knowing how to react in certain situations, and overreacting in others just piles on to the problem. Maintaining equanimity while you are training and interacting with your dog is key, if not mission critical, in establishing and maintaining a good working relationship.

It’s often easy to lose control of a situation and overreact and on the flip side, it’s even easier to spoil your dog rotten, letting them walk all over you, claim the furniture, get on your bed, beg for food, and eat whenever they feel like. And that’s all well and good, but when it comes down to correcting a bad behavior you dog must understand that you’re the boss. And in order for you to do that, you must assert yourself. It’s very easy when you’re training a puppy, as they haven’t had time to adjust themselves to you, but it becomes harder and harder (but not impossible) to do when they get older. So the earlier you can establish a dominant role, the better. Finally, giving your dog a proper place in the pack will give them comfort, and keep them from acting out.

Dogs who misbehave often do not know their place in the pack. It is your job to teach them.

Here are a few ways to establish a dominant role in the pack:

Treat Denial & Food Assertion

This is a very easy, and quick technique to supplement other strategies in establishing a dominant role in the pack. If you’re not already the Alpha in the pack, your dog likely believes that it can do anything it wants in the house, including accessing their toys, old bones, and food whenever it wants. The toys and bones are your, just like your house, the food, the furniture, and even the doggy bed. Reassert yourself by selectively denying and allowing access to her favorite toy, food, or bone. Letting them know that only you can give them access to those things, but only as a reward for the desired behavior.

For example:

Stance, Body Language, and Tone of Voice

This is and incredibly important technique, if not the most important. Dogs can read body language better than most other animals can. They can tell when you’re angry, anxious, upset, or happy simply by observing how you stand, walk and talk. As you assert your dominance over the pack, it is incredibly important to not make your dog anxious or nervous, but simply calm and collected.

Your new mantra should be: “I am in charge, and nothing will phase me”.

There’s no better opportunity than taking your dog out for a walk to reinforce your position as the pack leader with your dog. Walk them on a short leash, and if they try to lead, use the “Turn in Front” technique to reassert control. Always walk with a straight posture, confidently, and always look straight ahead. If your dog tries to go off course, or stops for a sniff, gently remind them who’s in charge. Pull them in the right direction, and don’t even bother looking down at them. Exude confidence in what you’re doing. And if you really believe it, your dog will follow suit.

Be Assertive, Not Aggressive

Also, never, ever talk to them in a high pitched voice, like you would a baby. This will show them weakness. When you talk to your dog, talk strongly, and confidently, and in an calm even tone.

If you’re interested in diving into the subject of Becoming the Pack Leader, then I highly recommend this book.

Finally, before you leave. Don’t forget to comment with your thoughts below.