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Leerburg.com May 2, 2011
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Michael Ellis Q&As at Leerburg

Michael Ellis Q&As at Leerburg

Last week my friend, Michael Ellis, was here at Leerburg. We filmed the next two training DVDs that Michael and I will be doing together. They are Bite Training Puppies and Protection Exercises Handlers can Train without a Decoy. While Michael was here we filmed a number of question and answer sessions that customers sent us by emails and on Facebook. The newsletter over the coming weeks will feature Michael and I discussing and answering these questions.

May 2, 2011 | 7 Minutes, 47 Seconds


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The Power of Training Dogs
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The Power of Training Dogs with Food with Michael Ellis
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The Power of Playing Tug with Your Dog with Michael Ellis
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Michael Ellis Lecture on the Foundation of Protection Work
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Dog Bite

To view these dog bite photos, click here.
Warning: these photos are very graphic!

We are always looking for photos of people who have been bitten by their dogs while trying to break up a dog fight. If you send us photos and the story on how the accident happened we will put them on our website with the hope that your mistakes will help other people realize how dangerous it is to try and break up a dog fight the wrong way.

Dog Bite:

Dear Cindy,

In response to the request in your newsletter for pics of dog bites I am submitting attached. My friend was playing with a very friendly springer spaniel. There was no aggression involved. My friend was holding the tug incorrectly and as the dog lunged to grab it, he pulled it away, at an awkward angle. She inadvertently bit him. The damage took less than a moment to happen. The dog let go immediately she realized the thing in her mouth was not the toy, but all too late. In all of the relevant videos, Ed and Michael stress the correct positioning of toys / tugs. It is extremely important that people realize this advice stems from years of experience and can save them a lot of pain. My friend was very, very lucky, as he is a diabetic and elderly (80 years). It was not easy to find a doctor who was willing to put the stitches in. The wound was sutured the following day and healed uneventfully. If complications had set in, it was not impossible to believe he could have ended up losing his hand.

Thanks for the great newsletter. We appreciate the work you guys put into it!

Kind regards,
Sam

See the photos.

Cindy's Response:

Thanks for sending this Sam, I'm glad your friend healed up without issue. You are right about the presentation of toys. This is extremely important! The dog also needs to learn proper targeting technique.

These skills can be learned in The Power of Playing Tug with Your Dog.


Have a Question on Dog Training?

Have you checked the Leerburg Discussion Board? It is one of the most active dog web boards on the internet. The Leerburg Web Board has over 16,500 Members with over 165 forums and 269,000 posts in its archives. The web board also has an excellent search engine that only searches the web board's 293,000 posts.


This Week's Featured
Question & Answers

Question: My dogs won't touch the chicken leg quarters unless I use my cleaver to chop them into manageable pieces, is this a problem? Is calve's liver a fair source of organ meat a couple times a week?

Cindy

First Let me thank you for taking the time to help all of us dog lovers, we appreciate it. I have just switched over to RAW this week with no problems in the transition. My 60# dogs are being fed each a chicken leg quarter twice a day. They really enjoy it but will not even touch it until I use my cleaver and chop them into smaller manageable pieces, is this a problem? They are not gluttons or gulpers and seem to chew each piece before swallowing. Also would a piece of calve's liver cut up be a fair source of organ meat a couple of times a week? Thanks in advance for your response.

Dave

Cindy's Response:

The problem with cutting chicken up is that you then are giving the dogs small pieces that present a choking hazard.  I would try to get them eating the bigger pieces on their own as soon as you can. Look at the chicken quarters you are feeding, many times there are bits of liver still attached to the quarters we feed.

I’d suggest these books on feeding: Raw Dog Food and Natural Nutrition for Dogs & Cats. We give both these books to our puppy customers and rarely have questions about the diet.

One of the newer feeding books we offer is Raw & Natural Nutrition for Dogs. This title covers homemade cooked & raw diets complete with recipes. I highly recommend all these books.

If you want to feed a raw diet, I’d make sure to have these in your library as reference when you have questions or problems. These books will give you insight into how much organ meat, etc should be part of your dogs’ weekly diet.

I hope this helps.

Cindy Rhodes

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Feeding a Raw Diet.

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Question: My dog has started to shut down when I bring out the tug. What do you suggest I do?

Hi Cindy,

Let me start by saying I love your website and the changes you made to the streaming videos are excellent.  I have purchased various DVDs and equipment and thanks to you I have a very obedient and happy dog.

I hope you can help me with a problem that just occurred with my 14 month old female GSD. She has good nerves and a wonderful temperament.  She can go anywhere with me, experience different situations, meet other dogs and people without a single change in her behavior. She is excited and eager for just about anything.  She loves to chase balls (especially the orbee balls) and she use to love to play tug... hence my problem. I took her out to play tug today and for the first time ever she completely shut down as soon as she saw the tug. She lowered her head and scurried into the heel position and wouldn't leave my side. She always had a positive experience while playing tug and I always stop playing with her wanting more. It goes so far as her not wanting to chase the orbee ball on a string but will chase regular orbee balls. I have tried various tugs with no luck. I hope you can help.

Thanks,
Brian

Cindy's Response:

I would make sure to watch the entire tug video we produced with Michael Ellis, The Power of Playing Tug with your Dog.

It sounds like your dog is confused about what the tug is for and you may have done too much formal obedience with her.

I would also not allow her access to anything other than the tugs you want her to play with, no balls of any kind right now. This is another form of equipment bias and it is counterproductive to good training.  Your dog should happily play with anything you offer, anytime , in any environment. If you give in and go back to playing ball with her when she refuses the tug, you’ve actually reinforced NOT playing with the tug.

Check out our streaming video about equipment bias, you can search our Video on Demand.

I hope this helps.

Cindy Rhodes

For more information on this topic, see our Q&A on Playing Tug with Your Dog.

 

Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Search Engine. This search engine was written specifically for Leerburg by our in house IT manager. Our search engine is specific to Leerburg and only searches leerburg.com and the Leerburg web forum. If you can't find the answer to your question by using our search engine, you can email Cindy here at Leerburg at cindyr@leerburg.com. If you have your spam filter on, make sure you set it to receive our replies!!!


Nice Emails from Customers
See Previous Emails

I was so excited when I watched your newsletter video on underwater treadmills for dogs… I had to write to you!  My GSD is gone now since 2007 and is missed tremendously. I started him with a reputable and very knowledgeable canine physical therapist when he was about 7 years old, he went to the underwater treadmill 1-2 times a week to build up and keep his muscle tone due to hip dysplasia. He was a great therapy dog, obedience demo dog and all around great guy. He happened to be a “fish” anyway (loved the water and loved to swim), but he loved the treadmill as well and always had to have his water kong or tennis ball in there with him. The treadmill made his last 2-3 years of life comfortable. I was very limited with the pain medications because he had a very sensitive stomach, so we did acupuncture, Chinese herbs, chiropractic work, massage and the treadmill. I always called him my money pit…. but would do it all over in a heartbeat!  One of the funny things he did was as the water would empty he’d start to just let his back end float, then as the water kept going down he’d follow it to the bottom and just lay there looking where it had gone and why isn’t it filling up again. He was the poster child for the treadmill. The therapist moved to Atlanta, Georgia and still has pictures of Skip on her wall. We always let him play a little when he first got in… being the digger he was… we got splashed many times over the years!

The second comment is your response to the idiot who wrote about hitting his dog with a stick because it growled at him when they were “working.” Calling him stupid was kind… I could like of a list of things to call him stupid idiot would be top on the list. People should not be able to have a dog! Thank you for removing him from your website!

Rush looks like he’s having fun! Glad he is better!

Thanks for all your info… have loved your website since I found it many years ago.

Cindy

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We Support & Recommend
The Michael Ellis School for Dog Trainers

Openings available!

Michael Ellis has added a new course to his school for dog trainers, MOTIVATION: Advanced Techniques for Increasing Motivation and Drive. This is a 5 day course in which trainers will learn about "making the reward an event,” using restraint to build drive/motivation, proper play techniques (tugging and retrieving games), individual play styles, the use of “food as a toy,” and channeling a dogs energy during development. Read more here.

Email Michael directly on class openings.


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