Dog Training Services in Greater Philadelphia

Mannerly Canine is excited to announce that we will be moving to the Limerick, PA area this December. Our head trainer, Shawn Reed, is a nationally and internationally renown dog trainer. He was the United States Mondio Ring Association 2016 national Champion at level 3 (mastery level), and represented the United States in two world championships, placing 5th in the world in 2016, in Battice, Belgium.

For our dog training and board service options, we will be offering board and trains, day trains, in-home private lessons and private lessons at our facility.

Board and Train: Too busy to train your dog? Hand him or her over to us and we can do the heavy lifting for you!

Day Trains: Parting with your dog for a couple of weeks can be tough – so we allow you to drop him or her off in the morning, and we’ll train them throughout the day. Get your daily done work and then come pick up your furry family member.

In-home Training: If you’re looking for a coach to teach you to train your dog, this is for you. We’ll meet weekly in your home and you will learn how to train your dog yourself.

Private Training: We’ll meet weekly at our dog training facility and coach you on how to train your dog.

We look forward to helping all the dogs and owners have a better relationship through training!

How To Pick The Right Crate For Your Dog

We get asked this question quite frequently during our evaluations. First off, many people make the mistake of getting a crate that is way too big. If you have a puppy, getting too big of a crate can work against your goal of crate training and house breaking. Reason being, if the crate is too big this gives the puppy the option to go to one end of the crate, eliminate and still have a clean area to lay down in. Dogs don’t like to eliminate in their resting area. So a crate too big doesn’t give the dog incentive to hold it. With that being said, the crate should just be big enough for the dog to go in, stand up and turn around. No more, no less. This will increase the likelihood that your dog will not eliminate in the crate provided you’re giving ample opportunities for potty breaks through out the day.

For puppies we recommend wire crates that come with a divider. Buy a crate big enough to fit your dog when he or she is an adult. The divider can be moved to give your dog more or less room. As your puppy grows you can move the divider back for more room. Again, one common mistake is owners give too much room in their puppy’s crate. The crate isn’t supposed to be a play arena. It’s purpose is to teach your dog to hold its pee, poop and be a place of rest and relaxation. The crate is also here to protect your young dog from himself. Puppies don’t know not to chew electrical cords, eat your socks etc. So when you don’t have time to train your puppy, he or she should be in his crate. Our next post will be on exercise pens and how to use them with crates.

Happy Training!

Shawn Reed
Owner/Head Trainer
Mannerly Canine

How To Train Children To Behave Around House Dogs

Children and Dog Training

As a professional dog trainer, I hear and witness on a weekly basis bad child to dog interactions. Nine out of ten times the child was in the wrong, not the dog. Below I will write about a situation where the child was in the wrong and how the parent’s expectation of how much the dog can take was way too high.

In my professional experience, many, but not all dog bites to children took time to build up. Meaning the child usually does things to the dog over a time period. There are many signals that the dog gives. Some are excessive licking, avoidance responses, i.e. getting up and leaving, head turning, growling etc. The dog is telling us he is not happy. At this point the child should be taught to not do these things to the dog.

Some examples of what children do to dogs that shouldn’t be acceptable:

  • Excessive hugging: as some dogs tolerate it, most don’t enjoy it.
  • Ear and tail pulling: this can be painful to our dogs.
  • Excessive excitement: running around the dog, throwing things at the dog, jumping on the dog all can lead to a fed up dog.

Years ago a friend from high school, we’ll call him Ted, was telling me about how his three year old son was tormenting the family dog. He said that his son would pull the dog’s tail, pinch her, slap her and run away. The part the disturbed me the most was when he said their dog started growling at the son. He then said, if she bites him, off to the pound she goes! I am not putting up with that!

I was floored! I couldn’t believe it. I really couldn’t. I told Ted, you’re dog is being MORE than fair. She is growling and telling you she isn’t happy. She could’ve went straight to biting him. But she didn’t. She’s in warning mode right now. If you don’t take care of it, she will. At that point, it will be your fault, Ted, not the dogs.

What needs to happen here is the son needs to learn how to interact with the dog. Then the son needs to be held accountable for his poor decisions.

As we teach our dogs how to behave around children, the children should be taught how to behave around dogs. There has to be balance on both ends.

With that being said, should a good family dog allow petting from children? Sure. But it should be done in a calm manner. We can’t expect a dog to take borderline abuse from our children.

Furthermore, people tend to set the bar too high on the expectation of what the dog should take from children. We have to remember they’re a living being, not a robot. They can get fed up too.

Dogs need to know boundaries, so do children.

Next week’s blog will be on “How Our Children Should Behave Around Strange Dogs”

Thanks for reading and feel free to share!

The 411 On Puppy Training

Here is the 411 on puppies. A lot of people neglect important needs in the beginning stages of a puppy’s life and therefore shelters are flooded with 1-3 year old dogs. In most cases, the reasons dogs end up in shelters are completely preventable given us humans follow some simple guidelines. Hiring a professional dog trainer will give you a distinctive advantage on setting your puppy up for success

Puppy Socialization

When you get your puppy at 8 weeks old you need to start slowly exposing your dog to new people and safe dogs. You don’t wanna just pick random dogs. Make sure you know the dog. Puppies who get attacked by dog aggressive dogs can become dog aggressive too when they get older. This is why working with a qualified dog trainer is important. Socialization, however, is much more than people and dogs. There is also an environmental component to it as well (this is why professional assistance is needed). There is a saying in the dog training world, “prevention is the best cure for behavioral problems.”

After your puppy hits 18 weeks old a lot of windows close and some things good and bad may be set in stone. There is a short time to get it right. Being full time dog trainers, we get a lot of calls a year for behavior problems with adult dogs. Most of these problems could have been prevented if a trainer was hired when the dog was young. Behavioral problems in adult dogs, most of the time can be made better. However, it is easier to change behavior in puppy hood. Obviously, we change adult dog behavior all the time, but when they’re puppies the process is generally shorter and easier.

Training Your Puppy

Next you’re going to wanna start a puppy training program with a professional dog trainer. Puppies are so moldable and are VERY easy to train. If more people would start the first week they get their dog I am sure there would be a fraction of dog’s in shelters. We prefer to train puppies with food when they’re young. This develops a relationship and builds trust.

Here is a list of things we hear from people who waited too long to address a puppy’s problem:

  • We were waiting until the weather got better to start training and socializing.
  • I was too busy to work with the puppy.
  • We bought the dog for my twelve year old daughter. She is responsible for the dog.
  • We thought giving the dog a home was enough.
  • We wanted to give the puppy a couple of months to get used to us.

With the above being said, we understand dog owners don’t intentionally avoid getting help. But rather don’t understand that there is a time frame to get it right with puppies. The earlier you start dog training, the better. There are many more different scenarios that we hear daily, but those five are the most common. Dog training and socialization isn’t like softball, football, soccer etc. It isn’t a seasonal event. A twelve year old in most cases isn’t mature and responsible enough to fulfill the obligations a puppy needs to be trained and socialized properly. We encourage children to get involved with a puppy’s training but only under parental supervision. Giving a dog a loving home isn’t enough. Actually beginning to train with your dog the first week will most definitely speedup the acclamation process! It will also allow the relationship to get off on the right foot.

Puppies need structure, rules, leadership and training. We MUST remember, they’re an animal at the end of the day. Training is a communication system since they don’t speak English and we don’t speak dog.

This is where training plays such a big role. At Mannerly Canine we have a quote we often say to our clients who let puppy’s get away with bad manners and it’s this, “Do you want him to do that 50lbs from now, a year down the road?” Obviously, our puppy owners answer is always no. Therefore, lets start teaching them to be an adult.

Things that should be addressed in a puppy development plan

Normal day to day situations: vacuum cleaner, garage door, objects dropped that create loud noises, stairs, getting on and off appropriate objects, getting in and out of the car, bikes and skateboards etc. These things should all be made to be positively a great experience.

How to address bad manners without diminishing drive: jumping up, chewing stuff, door dashing, chasing pant legs and any other destructive behavior.

Puppy Proofing: Is your home ready to accommodate a little furry ball of curiosity?

House Breaking: How to crate train, how and when to verbally reprimand eliminating in the house, more importantly when and how to reward eliminating outside the house.

Socialization: How to teach your puppy to greet people and dogs with manners and for the experience to always be positive for the dog. How to encounter things in the environment that may scare your puppy and how to expose them in small doses to teach them it’s a positive experience.

Training: All of our client’s puppies learn sit, down, stand, stay, leave it, off and come. When a puppy is taught all of these with rewards at a young age it makes life WAY easier when they’re older.

Good play habits: There is a right way to play with a puppy and a wrong way. Playing with a puppy the right way can condition a high value reward for obedience when the dog is older. The wrong way can lead to destructive behaviors.

With all of this information above, it can be overwhelming to achieve on your own. Give us a call, Shawn Reed has been coaching people and training dogs for almost a decade. He can break your goals down on a weekly basis.

Remember you could possibly have this dog for the next 15 years. Why not start off on the right foot! Socialize and train your puppy so he/she grows up to be a confident, happy and obedient adult dog. If you have questions and need some guidance, we’d love to hear from you!