Friday, October 30, 2015

Bound Angels


A dog in a shelter is almost never the dog it would be in a home, and this is certainly true of Cairns.  Kennel Syndrome is a real and difficult barrier for shelter dogs to overcome.  When a Cairn is rescued by Col. Potter, the two week minimum period of evaluation is essential to give the dog time to feel safe in the home environment so they can show their true personalities.

In this thought provoking video, Robert Cabral speaks at a Symposium at UCLA, giving a clear and insightful explanation of Kennel Syndrome, Barrier Aggression, and the simple but important positive training he is implementing via Bound Angels to help shelters help the dogs in their care, enabling them to find homes when they might otherwise fail in the shelter system.  Great lessons for all who are dedicated to Rescue.


Robert Cabral, Founder and Executive Director of Bound Angels, is an authority on canine behavior and shelter dogs.  His first hand knowledge of shelter behavior, aggression, and dog training is a lifesaver to dogs that have no one to speak for them - Robert speaks for them, sometimes eloquently, oftentimes candidly - but always honestly and always with the intent to make the world a better place for them.  Bound Angels helps animal shelters save more lives through information and knowledge.

More About Bound Angels:
https://boundangels.org/

More About Robert Cabral:

Friday's Funnies

Off the Leash

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Col. Potter Training Tips: No Place Like Home!

Contributed by a Col. Potter Volunteer
When life is a little stressful, it’s nice to have a place to call Home!

Are you thinking about adding a new Rescued Cairn to your family?  There are many things to consider, and lots of planning to do.  You can expect to get many great tips to help you integrate your New Cairn into your home, so it is good to know that some of this advice will also will apply to your current resident dogs.  Learning to use a crate effectively is a great example.

Crate Training Essentials for Your New Cairn

Your new dog has been Crate Trained, and is accustomed to sleeping in his or her crate.  He or she is also accustomed to spending some "down time" relaxing in the crate.  This is a practice that we HIGHLY recommend you continue.  Crate training is definitely NOT "cruel" as many people believe.  Numerous studies have shown that, contrary to being cruel to dogs, it's compassionate and caring.  Canines are, by nature, pack and den animals.  They feel safe and secure when they have their own den-like containment area.  A cage/crate serves as such.  Maintaining a positive pattern of regular, daily crate time will serve you well and will provide your new Cairn a safe and familiar place of his or her own.

Another helpful hint is that we often give the new dog too much attention at first in an attempt to make him or her feel welcomed, secure, and loved.  Please be aware that your new Rescued Cairn will be on emotional and physical overload for at least a couple of weeks.  Give them time and space to "decompress."  To become familiar with and comfortable in your home and with your family, on his or her terms.
 

A wire crate lets your Cairn feel like part of the activity
in the room, and a sheet or blanket can be draped over it
to give a more den-like feel when a more quiet time is desired.


Keep in mind that your little one has experienced at least TWO major disruptions in life already: being rescued from whatever his or her original environment was, then leaving the safety of the Foster Home to become your adopted dog.  Just think about your new Cairn’s story and imagine yourself in the same situation… Changes – even for the better – can be very stressful.  It's no wonder they experience a bit of overload.  Quiet time in the crate will help your Rescued Cairn adjust more easily - and more quickly.

Crate him or her at night and while you are away to help him or her feel secure.  Also, give him or her "time outs" in the crate whenever you sense the beginning of a little over stimulation or overloaded.  Sometimes everyone - human and canine - needs a chance to catch their breath.

Take it Easy and You’ll Get it Right!

Basically, TAKE IT EASY with your new Cairn!  We recommend that you not take the new dog into a lot of new situations right at first.  Many mistakes are made because the new adoptive home is so excited about their dog that they want to share their new little one with all their friends and family.  This new dog has NO CLUE that the adoptive family is their new family, nor will they have a clue who these new people are - especially new people who have dogs.  Give your New Cairn time to adjust to you, your immediate family, and your home before taking him out to visit friends or relatives.  If your friends and family cannot wait to meet your new family member, please introduce them to him or her slowly and allow time to adjust and welcome each member one at a time.  A large number of unfamiliar humans descending on a newly adopted Cairn has the potential to be overwhelming and can cause them to react in a negative way.

You cannot go too slowly...  but you can move too quickly by exposing your new adoptee to too many new people, places, sights, sounds and smells at first.  Be sure to use the crate wisely to give your new Cairn time to relax a few times each day, always making it a gentle, positive experience going in and coming back out.  Little bits of cheese in your hand help in any crating exercise, and it will reinforce the absolute goodness of your hands!

Good luck! And thank you again for opening your heart and home to a rescued Cairn!

Rescuing one Cairn will not change the world,
but it will surely change the world for that one Rescued Cairn


Read More About It:

It’s Always Best to Start at the Beginning!

I’m Not Sure we’ve been Properly Introduced!

Toto: The Other Side of the Story!

And the Oscar goes to…


Col. Potter Needs a Few More Beginnings! 
Please Volunteer to Foster and help us help give a new start to every Cairn in need!

Please  Consider being a CP Volunteer!

CP Foster Home Application form:

CP Transport Volunteer Driver form:

CPCRN Volunteer form:

Col. Potter’s Name a Rescue Cairn Program








Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Wacky Wednesday!



Wednesday is the day to be WACKY!  Each week we will showcase a terrierific Cairn picture with an appropriate caption.  If you would like us to consider YOUR picture and caption for an upcoming "Wacky Wednesday" send it to us at cpcrnblog@gmail.com!  All photo submissions become the property of CPCRN and may be used for fundraising, promotion and/or outreach purposes.

A big shout out to Missy, Rocky, Tess, and Gabby for being our Wacky Wednesday models this week!




Sunday, October 25, 2015

Sunday Sweets!

Sunday is full of SWEETS!  Each week we will showcase the sweeter side of Cairns.  If you have a sweet filled Cairn and would like us to consider YOUR picture for an upcoming "Sunday Sweets!" send it to us at cpcrnblog@gmail.com (All photo submissions become the property of CPCRN and may be used for fundraising, promotion and/or outreach purposes.).

Happy Halloween!!!
CP Berman all set for Trick-or-Treat!

Dezi

Carm

Tavish and Rookus

Toto


Wally

Smudge

LB

CP Marty

Mapleleaf

Titan fka CP Paul A Go-Go

Zach fka CP Mr. McGregor

Tess, Rocky, and Gabby

Happy Halloween!




Saturday, October 24, 2015

Raising a Puppy at Any Age


A Rescued Cairn of any age needs a period of adjustment, like a puppy, to learn self control and other vital lessons necessary to thrive in a new environment.  Understanding what it takes to raise a puppy will help you in your leadership role as you gently ease your Rescued Cairn into a new and wonderful life.

"Though he cannot articulate the concept, your puppy expects that leadership will be provided for him, or lacking that, he may have to be in charge as he matures..."    Suzanne Clothier

It Takes a Pack to Raise a Puppy

Understanding what a puppy expects and needs from his family.


Not too long ago, I read about a study that showed that when recorded birdsong was played to plants, it served to prepare the plants for morning and the coming light.  Hearing the birdsong, the plants underwent specific changes that allowed them to make good use of the sunlight.  The point of the article was that greenhouse operators using artificial lighting would be wise to use this simple approach to help plants use the light as effectively as physiologically possible.

When we raise puppies, it would be nice to know that there was something as simple as recorded birdsong to help trigger our puppies' minds so that our interactions with them would have the best possible effects.  But puppies aren't plants - they're complex creatures zooming along at an astounding pace on their developmental timetable.  Compounding it all is the reality that while we are well meaning, we are still just humans trying to raise a baby dog.  Hilary Clinton may or may not be right that it takes a village to raise a child; it definitely does take a pack to raise a puppy.  In taking a puppy to raise, we become a substitute canine family.  This is no easy task.

By the time the puppy is 7 weeks old, Nature has prepared the puppy to form deep bonds - in the world, with the pack around him; as a domestic dog, to form bonds with us, his substitute family.  This bond is heartwarming and charming - what is more adorable than a little puppy trustingly chugging along behind you?  It is also absolutely practical: this behavior is what will keep the puppy alive, fed, protected and educated.  From 7-12 weeks of age, the puppy is amazingly open to (even eager for) relationships - relationships with almost anyone who will allow it.  It is at this stage that flock guardian breeds are placed with the sheep; the poor misguided dears grow up feeling quite fond toward their wooly family and as impressive adult dogs will protect the flock with passion and skill.  Given that a puppy can be convinced that a relationship with a sheep is a good thing, it is small wonder that puppies are just as willing to look at the average human being and think, "There is a God - and my, what big shoes God has. . ."

But possible problems are already germinating, even at this tender age.  Even though a puppy is quite willing to develop relationships with all and sundry (even sheep), he does come to the table with some expectations.  He can't help it.  These expectations are hard-wired into his canine brain.  He also has needs, ones that are typically met in a "natural" setting.

The puppy expects that there are rules in the world.  His mother had them and reinforced them according to her personal mothering style.  Even his siblings had some rudimentary rules which were enforced through clumsy but oddly effective ways.  (Fat puppies learn quickly that you can get much of what you want by simply sitting on a less hefty puppy.  Biting hard on a rival's ear or lip can also be very effective.)  Even at the tender age of 7 weeks old, the puppy is watching you, trying to figure out what the rules are.  Where he sees uncertainty or inconsistency, his canine mind cannot help but make note of this.  As he grows, he may feel the need to test the weak areas in order to clarify what the rules may or may not be.  We expect this at some level - after all, human teenagers routinely "test" their parents to find out where the boundaries may be.  What we don't expect (or don't know or simply forget) is how quickly puppies move from the early stage of congenial agreement into the testing phase in just a matter of weeks, not the years like a human child.

The dog - like all social beings - is born with an understanding that there is power equal to, greater than and less than his own.  He is (eternally) interested in seeing where you, the neighbors, the cat next door and the Poodle he just met fall on the power scale.  Though he cannot articulate the concept, your puppy expects that leadership will be provided for him, or lacking that, he may have to be in charge as he matures.  Like all social beings, he'd prefer that his leader(s) be calm, consistent, and clear while also being benevolent, protective and aware.  And being a dog in all his waking moments, he assumes that you are a leader for him in your every waking moment.

A puppy (or even an adult dog) cannot understand that your life is not devoted to being a "leader among dogs" 24 hours a day or that you play many roles as spouse/parent/child/worker/friend.  Though dog leader/puppy raiser/trainer may be only a part-time job for YOU, it does not change the fact that your puppy is a puppy 24 hours a day.  Gaps in the leadership you provide for him will impact on the long term relationship between you and your puppy.  Depending on the individual dog, the breed and the situation, a lack of good leadership can lead to annoying and bratty behaviors, or it can lead to very serious consequences with the dog on a one-way trip to the Big Kennel in the Sky.  Loving a puppy is not enough; he expects and deserves clear, consistent leadership.  Being a dog leader means setting the rules for what is and is not acceptable behavior in your pack (with consideration to your rules being in line with the realities of dog behavior, culture and what constitutes reasonable expectations.)

Lacking the companionship and endless play his littermates would have provided, the puppy needs you to be his playmate. No excuses are truly satisfactory for a puppy who wants to play, play, play but has no one with whom to play. In a natural setting, a puppy wouldn't have to pester anyone or eat the linoleum out of boredom or bark in the backyard as a way to amuse himself. His littermates would be there, just as eager to play as he, littermates with which to chase, bite, wrestle, explore, etc. Although raising puppies together is NOT a good idea if you want a companion animal who is bonded to human beings and not to his puppy pals, it is a humbling moment when you watch puppies playing and realize that this is what you are going to replace in this puppy's life. Think of this the next time you find yourself exasperated with the puppy who won't stop pestering your other dogs to play, or who drops a toy invitingly at your feet for the millionth time, or who dances just out of your reach, reluctant to have a game end. Think of your puppy multiplied by 4 or 6 or 8 and what fun that many puppies would be having together. Then remember - you volunteered to be the substitute for that.

The puppy needs to learn to inhibit his impulses - in other words, to develop some self control. One of my males, Banni, was a master at teaching puppies this critical social skill. Making a big show of a toy or delicious bone, Banni would lay down, placing his treasure in a precise spot calculated for a specific puppy and the specific lesson. Initially, the puppy would rush toward the bone and Banni would pick it up quickly while growling then walk away. With just one or two repetitions, the puppy learned to stop whenever Banni growled. Soon, he didn't have to growl at all, but merely give the puppy "the look." You could see the puppy really wanted the bone, but was learning that wanting something and acting on that desire were quite different.

When dogs teach puppies to control themselves, they do not make excuses for the puppy: "Well, I was trying to teach him to leave my bone alone but he got so excited and I suppose it did smell pretty good, so I just let him have it."  Humans make excuses for dogs, forgetting that among all social animals, self control is a learned skill that must be taught.  We learned self control because our parents taught us.  For puppies to be welcome and enjoyable members of our substitute families, we need to teach them a great deal of self control.  Puppies do learn self control from other dogs but only concerning matters that are of interest to other dogs.  A dog would not bother to teach a puppy that he should not get up on the sofa or steal food from the kitchen counter.  These things don't matter much to dogs.  But an older dog WILL teach a puppy that you should not steal another dog's meal or simply take a direct line of travel over another dog's body - much more polite to go around!

When teaching self control, dogs are careful to make the lessons appropriate for the puppy's age.  Before the puppy reaches 16-18 weeks of age, normal dogs are amazingly tolerant of puppy behavior.  The careful observer will note a slow, subtle increase in what older dogs begin expecting from the puppy, but the overall impression is that a puppy can get away with almost anything.  And the truth is, he can, thanks to the invisible (at least to humans!) but very real "puppy permit."  What the puppy doesn't yet know is this: there's an expiration date on that puppy permit.  When it expires, the rules can change quite quickly.  Behavior that was acceptable one day may be completely unacceptable the next.  With my own dogs, I've seen a puppy's permit expire over the course of a single morning.  Just before breakfast, a four month old puppy galloped over one of my older dogs - nothing more than a dirty look and a grunt was what she got for this behavior.  Later that day, the puppy did the same thing and was shocked when the adult dog leaped up fiercely snarling and barking in displeasure. After a few repetitions over the next few days, the puppy learned to politely walk around - not over! - other dogs.

The expiration date is usually at 16-20 weeks of age, and corresponds with hormonal shifts in the puppy's body.  Once the hormonal shift occurs, the puppy will find much less tolerance from the dogs around him, and increasingly, he will be expected to act in a more mature fashion.  Smart puppy owners keep an eye on the calendar too, allowing puppies to be puppies under some broad but consistent guidelines.  Very slowly - almost imperceptibly, you begin to ask for a little more self control, a little more respect, a little more responsibility from the puppy but never losing sight of the fact that the puppy permit is still in force.  Once the permit has expired, the wise handler can act just like a wise dog, and begin to push a little harder and expect more from the puppy.

From the best puppy raising dogs I've known, here are a few pointers for humans trying to raise a puppy:

  • Tolerate puppies - they know not what they do
  • Teach puppies - they know not what to do
  • Be consistent with puppies - they forget things quickly
  • Keep lessons short - puppies are easily distracted
  • Puppies need to play - that why puppies are born in litters
  • Good social skills & manners are made, not born
  • Remember that puppy permits have expiration dates
  • Don't wait till the puppy has stolen your bone to teach him about manners
  • Be careful what you teach a puppy - someday, he might be in charge
  • Tired puppies are always good puppies


Note: This article originally appeared in the newsletter of the Siberian Husky Club of America.

"Copyright © 2013 by Suzanne Clothier. Used by permission of Suzanne Clothier. All rights reserved. For more information about Suzanne please visit SuzanneClothier.com"

Relationship Centered Dog Training Tips by Suzanne Clothier:

Read More Training Tips from Suzanne Clothier:





Friday, October 23, 2015

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Col. Potter Training Tips: Start at the Beginning!

Contributed by a Col. Potter Volunteer
Have a thoughtful plan in place for your new Cairn - before you open the crate door for the first time - and you will have the best chance for a happy ending!

Are you thinking about adding a new Rescued Cairn to your family?  There are many things to consider, and lots of planning to do.  You can expect to get many great tips to help you integrate your New Cairn into your home, so it is good to know that some of this advice will also will apply to your current resident dogs.  Learning to be the Alpha pack leader is a great example.

Before You Bring Your New Cairn Into Your Home…

Before your new dog arrives, it's important that you understand that your new dog must accept YOU as the leader of the pack in order for there to be peace and harmony in the home.  First and foremost, you must be the Alpha, hence the messages you put out the first few days are vital to ultimate success.

Recognizing the inherent differences in canine and human thought processes is critical to this process.  Dogs think entirely in terms of "pack rank" hierarchy.  Humans think in terms of "equality" and "fairness."  The two concepts are, of course, mutually exclusive.

Being Alpha does not mean your dog is supposed to think you're a dog!  It is ludicrous to even suggest that!  Being Alpha simply means your dog sees you as the Ultimate Leader, the entity who controls all of the things of value: food, toys, furnishings, doors, and so forth.

Pack ranking means there is one entity, be it human or Canine, at the top of the pack ("Alpha") and each additional member of the pack (human and canine) is lower than the Alpha in a sort of descending "step ladder" arrangement.  There's a top dog ("Alpha"), a next-in-line ("Beta") then everyone else in a stair-step array on down the line to "Omega" (the bottom of the pack).  When you understand this concept, and embrace the leadership position of Alpha of the pack, your dog will feel comforted and secure.  This results in an easier integration into your family's pack.

Our job, as humans, is to be that Alpha.  Then, and only then, can we help assure a calm and uneventful integration of a new dog into our family "pack."  When the dog is convinced that we, as humans, are above them in the pack rank, they are reassured that they are safe and that someone is in control of their pack (hence is guarding the safety of the pack).  Conversely, if they do not sense a strong Alpha presence in their humans, dogs feel they must "fight" to assume control of the pack and become the pack leader.  This is not a situation that you want, nor is it what THEY want.  Being "Alpha" really means being the “LEADER”, and that's your job:  to lead the family's pack.

How do you assume Alpha status is their eyes?

Like Dorothy on the Yellow Brick Road, it is always best to Start at the Beginning!  For the first two weeks minimum, you should have a drag lead attached to your New Cairn’s harness, inside your home and outside, in a securely fenced area.  A drag lead gives you power (Alpha) and helps you avoid situations where you ask for a behavior but have no way to ensure that you can make it happen without asking a 2nd time (which you should never do!).  “Come!” is a great example.  In the beginning it is really best to calmly step on the lead, pick it up, and then say, “Come!” where you can easily reel the dog in, ready to give a nice treat as soon as the action has been achieved.

A drag lead is strongly recommended for at least the first two weeks, and maybe longer, to prevent potential trouble and give you easy control when needed.

How much you need to use the drag lead will vary from dog to dog, depending on their level of fear or sense of entitlement (i.e., they think they should be Alpha!), but you will be well served, no matter what, if you attach a drag lead for at least two weeks – and maybe longer.

Remember, in everything, the humans are always FIRST.  Eating or being fed, going up or down stairs, in and out doors, deciding where to sit, where to walk, etc., humans FIRST always.  This includes walking your new dog.  We strongly recommend that you have your new Cairn at your left heel, with his or her nose parallel with your left leg (while on leash, of course!) rather than allowing him or her to "lead" you by being out in front of you with the leash fully extended.

Given that we humans tend to try to be polite, this may go against our nature, but, to a dog, whoever is in front of the pack physically, or first in line for anything, is viewed as "Alpha" by the dogs.  Therefore, humans FIRST always.  If at any time in the future, you notice that your new little one begins to try to assert him or herself and assume "control" of your family's pack, go back to the HUMANS FIRST rule.  It's powerful in its simplicity and its message.

Also, keep in mind that to dogs, furniture - and especially human beds - are very powerful symbols of Alpha ranking.  Sounds odd to us, perhaps, but to a dog, whoever is on or in the human bed or the furniture has a powerful and envied position.  Therefore, being permitted to sit on furniture, or being invited on your bed is a privilege that the new dog must EARN.  It should not be granted to him or her immediately. 

It is STRONGLY recommended that you do not allow your new dog to sleep on or even BE on your bed for at least a couple of months.  The bed should be an earned pleasure.  Perhaps this will take longer than two months, and, perhaps, it will never be a good idea, depending on the dog’s Alpha tendencies. 

Rescuing one Cairn will not change the world,
but it will surely change the world for that one Rescued Cairn


Read More About It:

I’m Not Sure we’ve been Properly Introduced!

Toto: The Other Side of the Story!

And the Oscar goes to…


Col. Potter Needs a Few More Beginnings! 
Please Volunteer to Foster and help us help give a new start to every Cairn in need!

Please  Consider being a CP Volunteer!

CP Foster Home Application form:

CP Transport Volunteer Driver form:

CPCRN Volunteer form:

Col. Potter’s Name a Rescue Cairn Program









Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Wacky Wednesday!



Wednesday is the day to be WACKY!  Each week we will showcase a terrierific Cairn picture with an appropriate caption.  If you would like us to consider YOUR picture and caption for an upcoming "Wacky Wednesday" send it to us at cpcrnblog@gmail.com!  All photo submissions become the property of CPCRN and may be used for fundraising, promotion and/or outreach purposes.

A big shout out to Dezi for being our Wacky Wednesday model this week!




Sunday, October 18, 2015

Sunday Sweets!

Sunday is full of SWEETS!  Each week we will showcase the sweeter side of Cairns.  If you have a sweet filled Cairn and would like us to consider YOUR picture for an upcoming "Sunday Sweets!" send it to us at cpcrnblog@gmail.com (All photo submissions become the property of CPCRN and may be used for fundraising, promotion and/or outreach purposes.).

Riley fka CP Tramp

Foster Armani

Miss Missy

Frenchi

Rory fka CP Stevens and Max

Brody fka CP Deano

Sweet Lucy

Canuck

Brown Brown

Foster Flory

Dudley

Emma Loo

LB

Sweet Mac and CP Reenie

Yuli

WiiGii

CP Barney Rubble and Linus fka CP McNeil