It’s not too hard to teach your dog to accept annoying human behaviors such as brushing his teeth (the dog’s, I mean), putting in ear drops, and even giving shots. The basic idea is to go slow and pair every aspect of the procedure with a tiny, deluxe treat.
On Day 1, you might just show your dog a toothbrush and then immediately give him a bit of roast chicken. A dozen reps later, he’ll be looking for that chicken every time he sees the toothbrush. On Day 2, you might bring the toothbrush close to his mouth a dozen times, and give him chicken each time. And so on, step by step, till you’re brushing away and your dog is perfectly happy about it.
But, uh-oh, suppose you haven’t taught your dog that ear drops = chicken, and now he’s got an ear infection and needs drops put in 5 times a day? Suppose he needs daily allergy shots? Suppose he needs a bandage changed? What do you do then? Continue reading ‘How to Use Warning Cues’