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Basics of Catahoula Training

Basics of Catahoula Training

It's essential for Catahoula parents like you to know certain basic factors that determine your relationship with your Catahoula and can go a long way in training him effectively.

Before you begin training your Catahoula, it is absolutely essential that you build a loving bond with him. This is important as it helps you to understand his needs and instincts and also allows your Catahoula to have complete trust in you.


Let us see how.......

How To Bond With Your Catahoula

Building a bond with your Catahoula is the first and the most crucial step involved in training him successfully. As soon as you bring your Catahoula home, you must first try to develop a caring and loving relationship with him in order to win his trust and confidence.

When Catahoulas are secure in the knowledge that they belong to the family, they are more likely to respond better to their owners' training commands. Just like with any relationship, there must be mutual trust and respect between you and your Catahoula.

Trust takes time to develop and respect comes from defining boundaries and treating any breach of those boundaries with firmness and fairness.

Without enforceable limitations, respect can’t be developed. And when there is no respect, building a bond with your Catahoula is almost impossible.

4 Golden Rules To Building A Relationship With Your Catahoula :
  • Spend quality time together;
  • Take him out in the world and experience life together;
  • Establish and promote a level of mutual respect; and
  • Develop a way of communicating to understand each other's needs.
Building a bond with your Catahoula will not only help you manage him better but will also make your Catahoula calm, quiet and an extremely well-adjusted pet.

Love Your Catahoula and He Will Love You back

Once you're succesful in building a bond with your Catahoula, you can rest assured that training him and teaching him new and clever tricks will be a cakewalk.


How Your Catahoula Learns...

Your Catahoula's learning period can be divided into five phases:

The Teaching Phase - This is the phase where you must physically demonstrate to your Catahoula exactly what you want him to do.

The Practicing Phase - Practice makes Perfect. Once a lesson is learnt, practice with your Catahoula what you have just taught him.

The Generalizing Phase - Here you must continue practicing with your Catahoula in different locations and in an environment with a few distractions. You can take your Catahoula out for a walk, or to a nearby park and command him to practice whatever you've taught him.

Practicing the learned lessons in multiple locations and in the presence of small distractions will help him learn and retain lessons better .

The Testing Phase - Once you're sure that your Catahoula has achieved almost 90% success....he responds correctly almost every time you give a command, you must start testing his accuracy in newer locations with a lot of distractions.

Example: Take him to the local shopping mall and ask him to obey your command. He may not come up with the correct response the very first time you do this, but you must not lose hope.

The idea is to test your Catahoula to see how he responds in an environment which is new to him. Set-up a situation where you are in control of the environment and your Catahoula.

There are only 2 possibilities:
  • Your Catahoula succeeds!!! (Trumpets please!)
  • In case your Catahoula fails, re-examine the situation. Review and/or change your training. Then try testing again.
Keep on testing until he succeeds. Follow the rule of the 3 Ps – patience, persistence, praise.

Internalizing Phase - Finally, comes the extremely rewarding phase where your Catahoula does everything he is taught to do even without your commands.
Remember:
  • Never scold your Catahoula if he fails. It's not his fault. You have failed as a trainer!
  • You must be patient and persistent for your efforts to show rewards.
  • Appreciate and love your Catahoula when he does it right! A little encouragement will work wonders for your Catahoula.

Copyright (c) 2009 TrainPetDog.com

Training Your Catahoula to Listen to You

Training Your Catahoula to Listen to You



Why Won't My Catahoula Listen To Me?

This is a common question that most first-time Catahoula owners ask me. Before I answer your question, let me ask you a few instead:
  • Do you use cookies, collars, head halters or clickers to make your Catahoula listen to your commands?
  • Do you have to raise your voice every time you want your Catahoula to listen to you?
  • Does your Catahoula always come or sit on command - anytime and anywhere you want him to?
If your answers are mostly in the negative, its time you seriously reconsider your role as a sincere Catahoula trainer and an ideal pet parent.


Get Your Catahoula To Listen To You

Before you begin any training, you must first establish yourself as the "ALPHA dog" of your family. Your Catahoula must know that you’re the leader of the pack and it is YOU who is in charge.

Here is a list of simple DO's and DONT's that you must follow if you want to be the Alpha:
  • Always go out or come in through the door first - remember you are the leader;
  • Always eat first - give your Catahoula something to eat only after you've finished your meal;
  • Don’t circle around your Catahoula when he is lying on the floor - make your Catahoula move out of your way instead;
  • Don't let your Catahoula set the rules - pay attention to him when you think fit and not whenever he demands;
  • Don’t permit your Catahoula to sleep with you in your bed - demarcate his sleeping area clearly.
Once you successfully established yourself as the Alpha, training your Catahoula and making him listen will be a lot easier than you can imagine. Remember, if your Catahoula does not learn to "listen", all your training efforts will be in vain!

Does your Catahoula know his name? Does your Catahoula look at you whenever you call him by his name? This is the first and the most critical step involved in Catahoula Training. If your Catahoula doesn't respond to his name, you cannot have his attention for teaching him any other commands.

To make sure that your Catahoula recognizes his name, take a treat in your hand and hold it away from your body. Call your Catahoula's name. He is most likely to look at the treat in your hand. Continue calling his name untill he turns and looks at your eyes. Give him the treat immediately. Repeat this exercise by holding the treat in the other hand. Once you're sure that your Catahoula has learnt to recognize his name, just call his name and reward him for looking at you by petting or with a hug.

You must understand that Catahoulas respond far better to positive reinforcement than they do to coercion or force.


Copyright (c) 2009 TrainPetDog.com

Is Your Catahoula Potty Trained Enough?

Is Your Catahoula Potty Trained Enough?

House Training a puppy or adult Catahoula is such an essential issue for its owner that even a single exclusive tip turns out to be extremely helpful.

The first step in making your Catahoula fit for polite company would be to potty train him. Some see this training as a hassle and some as a challenge.

For me, it is part of bringing up a pet.


There are a few things you need to know before you actually start potty training a puppy or adult Catahoula. I enumerate these below:
  • You need to understand your dog's body language. Watch for signs that will indicate to you when your pet wants to eliminate.
  • If you own puppies, remember that they need to go potty at fairly frequent intervals - as soon as they wake up, after short naps, after play-time, after meals, before and after being crated and finally, before retiring for the night.
  • Take your Catahoula for walks at the time that he usually does his potty. Take him out to the yard and then to the same place there every time he needs to answer nature's call.
  • Praise your Catahoula after he eliminates at the right place. Some Catahoula owners even give treats to their dogs. But remember to do this every time he does it right. He will relate the rewards to his having "done it right" and zero in on the spot where you want him to defecate regularly.
  • With time, you can try signal training. This is so that you know when your doggie wants to go. You can hang a bell at his level near the door and teach him to push it with his nose or pat it with his paw on his way out.
  • Until your Catahoula has been fully potty trained keep him under strict vigilance. Do not let him roam around the house freely.
  • Use a crate. A crate-trained Catahoula is usually very happy to get his own den. The advantage of crating is that dogs do not soil the place where they sleep. So, he will naturally not eliminate inside the crate.
  • If you have a small dog and if you live in a high-rise building or in a place that does not have a proper backyard, you can try litter pan training. What you do is create a space for your pet to eliminate in your house itself.
  • Use positive reinforcements while housebreaking puppies or adult dogs. Do not scold or hit him as you will gain nothing by doing that. He will only associate punishment with your return from outside. If you catch him in the act, a stern 'NO' or 'FREEZE' will do. It will startle the Catahoula enough for him to stop pooping.
  • Be prepared to return to a soiled home if you are keeping your Catahoula home alone for more than 4 hours as separation anxiety is quite common among home - alone dogs.
  • Accidents will happen. It is unusual for a trained adult Catahoula to work against its house training. But medical problems or health disorders may lead to sudden accidents.
  • Many dogs mark their territory. These can be a leg of a table or a particular wall. Intact male and female dogs mark their territories by urinating. Use deodorizers to spray on the places where your Catahoula has marked.
  • If you are patient and are ready to accept that house training a dog takes time, even months sometimes, you will end up having a good housetrained Catahoula.
Now we will move on to how to potty train puppies and adult dogs.

Potty Training A Puppy:

Irrespective of breeds, housetraining a puppy is considered to be one of the biggest challenges by dog owners. If you think housetraining your puppy simply involves a steady supply of old newspapers, then think again.

A puppy does not develop full control over his bladder until it is over 4 or 5 months old. Since they are growing and developing rapidly at this time, puppies eat more, burn more calories and need to eliminate more frequently than an adult Catahoula.

After each nap, meal, drink or play, take your puppy to his designated area (indoors or outdoors, wherever you have decided) and stay there until it eliminates. Then bring him to his crate.
Repeat this situation every day until he has developed a habit out of it.

Potty Training An Adult Catahoula:

The best way to housetrain an adult Catahoula is to begin all over again.

Observe him very closely. Maybe even maintain a diary of where he goes and when. Whether he is pooping when you are home or only when you are outside; whether you can time yourself to be home when he feels the need to go outside.

You can try dog crates, but be careful to introduce him gradually to them.

Remember, commitment, consistency and intelligent use of positive reinforcement will make you the owner of a perfectly housetrained Catahoula. Don't expect miracles. You will only be disappointed.

Get this unique Housetraining guide and start Housebreaking Your Catahoula Today.

Copyright (c) 2009 TrainPetDog.com

How Well Is Your Catahoula Groomed?

How Well Is Your Catahoula Groomed?



The reason one should groom his/her Catahoula is simple - your dog's physical state influences the way he feels and the way you look at your dog. Extreme cases, where lack of proper care, cleaning and grooming can directly affect the behavior of your Catahoula, are not rare.

Proper grooming not only infuses a healthy glow to your dog's appearance, but also helps develop his self-esteem; while it makes you a very proud parent, when you show off your Catahoula to others.
The first step involved in dog grooming is: Brushing!

Brushing has been universally acknowledged by expert dog groomers as the single most important step in grooming.
The benefits of brushing are many. To name a few:
  • Better blood circulation
  • Shinier and healthier coat
  • Better bonding

Even if you know how crucial brushing is for your Dog's health and well-being, we all know that there is a right way and a wrong way of doing anything. And without doubt, you would like to do everything the RIGHT way when it comes to your Catahoula.

Yes, there's a method to follow while brushing your Catahoula.
Here are FIVE steps to successfully brushing your Catahoula that will prove to be extremely useful:
  • Brush against the growth of the hair first with a slicker brush and then with a medium or wide-toothed comb.

  • The slicker brush removes all the loose hair and the comb takes care of the tangles.

  • Brush your Catahoula along the hair growth and make sure you reach the skin as you brush his way.

  • Then use a flea comb over the coat to get the fleas and remove any remaining tangles. Part the coat and start from the root and then comb through.

  • If your Dog's paw pads are hairy, then clip them using electric clippers. Do not clip the hair in between the pads. Clip only the excess hair.
Brush your Dog's hairs to prevent it from matting. Matting can be a very painful experience.

Regular brushing untangles the matted hairs on your Dog's coat. Since this is a risky job to do, the best way out is to prevent them from forming in the first place. And doing this is simple: just brush and comb your Catahoula regularly. If and when you see any mats or tangles, use a detangle solution and a medium-toothed comb.

Don't wait until your Catahoula is dirty or matted to introduce him to grooming. That would make him associate the experience with unpleasantness. Moreover, many dogs learn to see their routine brushing as an alternate form of petting, i.e. another source of affection and attention.


Copyright (c) 2009 TrainPetDog.com