Making your home ideal for a dog

Owning a dog is a huge responsibility, so creating the right living environment for them in your home is essential. There are a number of things that you need to consider when making your home dog friendly and below we cover some of them.

Preparing your home for dogs

Access to water and food

Some things may seem obvious to you but it is crucial that you get them right. For example, you need to have a designated area for water in your home where your dog can always depend on access to fresh and clean water. This area needs to be easily accessible as well as out of the way of people who can easily trip over a dog’s water bowl…trust me, I’ve done it! You should also try and designate an area in your home where you feed your dog and stick purely to this area, this avoids your pet from begging or hassling visitors for food if they know that they only get fed in a certain area of your home. A good example of this could be a kitchen, Kitchen Fitters Norwich, can help you design the best kitchen for your dogs needs.

Control the environment of your home

You need to consider that there will be times when no one is at home except your dog. Most people opt to lock their dog securely in a particular room of their house but this presents a number of issues that you need to consider.

You need to think about the temperature of the room that you leave your dog alone in. If the room experiences direct sunlight and little ventilation, this can be a bad environment for a dog. Some people get around issues like this with home automation for example in using devices like electric thermostats and curtains. Electric curtain tracks can be useful to shade your dog from direct sunlight and can be set to operate automatically even when you aren’t at home.

Considerations for young dogs

Young dogs in particular can present problems to owners. People need to consider that a dog in its first stages may chew things like electrical cables, remote controls or clothing. You should always try and break these habits and discipline your dog of course but these issues should be expected. For this reason is is advisable that you never leave unnecessary electrical wired plugged in or powered up, especially if you’re leaving your dog alone in a room.

Young dogs are also prone to making a mess in every sense of the word. To prepare for this be sure to equip your home with disinfectants, cleaning products and gloves so that you’re ready for any eventuality.

How To Choose A Dog Breed

Choosing the right dog breed for your lifestyle and living conditions is one of the most important things to consider when thinking about getting a dog. There are a number of factors that should influence your decision, so it’s important that you do your homework first. When you consider the fact that there are over four hundred breeds of dogs and counting, you really do have a lot of choices in front of you.

A great resource to help you with these sorts of questions and decisions is HillsPet.com, they have an excellent dog breed catalogue that will provide you with a number of details that are important for you to consider. The internet in general is a great place to start, watch videos of some of the dog breeds that you’re thinking of getting, sense their temperaments and characteristics. Forums are another great resource for this type of information too, these are great places where you can speak directly with owners of the breeds that you’re considering.

dog breeds

Give your lifestyle a thought

You need to think about your family members and the lifestyle that you lead. If there are children that are young in your household, it would be good to consider a social and tempered breed of dog. If you’re particularly active and enjoy getting outdoors and doing physical activities, you may want to consider a breed of dog that would stand up to the tests of these environments. If however, you’re less active and enjoy a more relaxed indoor lifestyle then you’re dog should reflect this too, a smaller dog that doesn’t need to be walked as much would be idea.

The size of the dog should also be an important factor in your decision, especially when they reach maturity. Bear in mind that as cute as puppies are, they can grow up in to much bigger animals. Size can have a big impact on the requirements on an animal too, bigger dogs tend to eat more and require more exercise which not only requires more time from you but more money too.

Going back to an earlier point of using internet programs, be sure to as current owners of the breed that you’re interested in questions. You should as people about particular experiences with their dogs and how they managed to train and discipline them. Problems that they’ve encountered can also be useful to know. Speaking to a vet can also be useful too, they can sometimes give you a professional opinion on your chosen breed in particular on the health issues that can plague certain breeds of dogs.

If you enjoyed this article then take a look at on Building your dog a wooden home.

Building Your Dog A Wood Home

Now a lot of people let their dogs live in their home and others prefer to have them sleep outside. Whichever you choose, which is a matter for another discussion, a wood dog home can still be useful. They provide shade in the summer to keep your dog cool and can keep them warm in the winter if you’re leaving them outside.

wood dog house

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why not have a go and building your own wooden dog home? I’ve included a guide on how to do this below for you to have a look at. What really makes building your own dog house great is not only are you saving money and achieving something great but you can fully customise how it looks. You are able to select the wood and timber you like such as oak etc if you’re feeling extravagant to cheaper timbers like pine etc.

Once you have your type of wood selected, you’ll want to get on with building. First comes the base, you’ll need to measure out an appropriate size based on your dog, you can either use a solid board or cut some lengths of wood to size and nail them together. Be careful not to leave any sharp edges or nails exposed as this could injure your dog. This wooden base then needs to be framed using further wood.

Now 4 sides need to be cut out as well as two coverings for the roof. Be sure to cut out an opening for the door. You can felt the roof to make it waterproof, be sure not to leave any gaps between wooden planks to wind-proof your dog home.

If you do decide to give this a go, be sure to show me some pictures! I know my guide is a little vague but I’m mostly trying to show people how simple it can be and to get them having a go for themselves just like I did!

Teaching A Dog To Sit

This is perhaps one of the most common questions that I get. How exactly do I teach my dog to sit? It’s actually a simple and repeatable process if you know how!

One of the most important things in a relationship with a dog is communication and understanding. This is achieved in a variety of ways but the main ones are exercising them thoroughly, disciplining them and then showing them affection at the appropriate times. This will lay the building blocks for conditioning your dog, a.k.a ‘training them’. Now dogs may be animals but they have pretty complex brains, so it’s important to get inside their minds and understand their psychology just as you do with people. You need to help maintain a healthy mental state with your dog in order for them to listen to commands like sit etc.

Sitting is a skill that any well domesticated dog should know and it begins with one simple principle, that you’re the pack leader and that they need to obey your commands. You achieve this by using your energy and body language to obtain control in a way that is natural for dogs to respond to. Dogs find it hard to understand the meaning of the word “sit or stay” just like they wouldn’t understand words like “party” – it is the job of the owner to learn to teach them to understand what these words mean.

When I am trying to teach a new command that we haven’t worked on before, it is very crucial to have your dog’s undivided attention and learn to recognise the signs of them losing concentration. It’s always good practice to keep them in a state of wanting more. Should your dog run elsewhere and start playing around etc then you kind of know that maybe you have done a little too much with them in this session. Your dog isn’t going around and saying, “It’s over! Great!” but what you’re dog is saying is that ‘I’ve done too much’. Puppies are especially vulnerable to this, they can be overactive as it is. You should try and stamp your leadership by keeping them calm and not over-stimulated.

Teaching a dog to sit down takes a great deal of patience, a lot of repetition, and a suitable reward afterwards. You must first call them to attention, use a treat in one hand in front of their nose and slowly push them backwards off their back legs using a treat. When you have achieved this, be sure to use the work ‘sit’ to re-enforce the behaviour and have them associate it with that word. You should then reward them with a treat. Check out the great video below: