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December 8, 2014
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Breed Generalizations

Breed Generalizations

Michael Ellis explains how common breed generalizations can be helpful in understanding your dog, despite the fact that they are often wrong. He discusses how you can use the generalizations to help prepare for potential issues that may arise throughout your training, but he also stresses that you should never base your entire training plan solely off the common behaviors and temperaments of a specific breed.




Leerburg's Online Basic Dog Obedience Course

I thought this course was excellent. I am hoping for more to come. I donít know what to tell you on how to improve but I can say videos are the easiest way for me to learn so I appreciated all of them. And I did practice on my dog after watching some of them. Thank you again. I Loved the course and am hoping for more. Thank you very much for the opportunity to take this and to learn from your knowledge.

Read more student comments on Leerburg Online University

Leerburg Q&A
Ask your training question

Question: What do you suggest for preventative ear cleaning for a dog that swims?

I have a 1 1/2 year old working line GSD. I will take my dogs for a swim form time to time, by throwing a floating toy out for him to retrieve. When he jumps in, he will get some water in his ears, then when he grabs the toy, sometimes his whole face and part of his head will go in the water, so water is getting in his ears.  My questions are, is it really a bad thing to get water in the ears of GSD? and  what kind of a good wash solution can one make for general, preventive cleaning?  I've heard 50/50 water and vinegar is good, what do you think of that?  Thank you so much for you help and answers.

Cindy's Response:

My dogs swim all the time and get water in their ears.  As long as the ears aren’t red with a discharge or odor, I leave them alone. I don’t really believe in “preventative cleaning” for a healthy dog’s ears. To give you an idea, I have multiple dogs and I haven’t cleaned their ears in so long I can’t remember when it was. I look in their ears every day when I brush them but other than that I don’t do anything with them.

If I had a reason to clean ears, I’d use an apple cider vinegar solution. I hope this helps.

Cindy Rhodes

Thanks:

Thank you so much Cindy, that really helped a lot.  I will do the same.

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Health.

We get a number of Q&As every week, if you would like to read this week's Q&As, click here and check out the 'Recent Questions' section!

Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Q&A Search. 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!!!

Customer Comments

On Leerburg's Last Week's Newsletter Q&A

Hi Cindy,

I felt I had to respond to the latest question from the gal who has been told that SHE needs an attitude adjustment just because she is trying to keep her puppy safe from loose dogs!

I totally understand her frustration. It's like she is walking in my shoes. My German Shepherd and I have been attacked four separate times, in different locations, in exactly the same scenario....he and I on a leash walking on the sidewalk minding our business, only to be attacked by a loose dog all the while his owner is shouting from afar, "Don't worry, my dog likes other dogs"....Ya right, that would be just seconds before their dog would sniff my young dog and then attack him, with me trying to keep the other dog at bay while the owner strolled over!

Please, tell that girl that I think her attitude is very WELL adjusted and to stick to her convictions. I was too "worried" about being outwardly angry at these various IRRESPONSIBLE dog owners and was too "polite". I can honestly say, I wasn't assertive enough towards those ignorant people with their untrained dogs; and because of that, my dog was "ruined". (A bit of an overstatement as he he has grown into a lovely dog. He is loyal, smart, friendly and most importantly, confident. Except for when we encounter strange dogs while out and about). I totally blame myself for not being the "leader of the pack" and not fully protecting my young dog. At that stage of his life, it was my job to keep him out of harm's way. I should have kicked those dogs and given their owners a piece of my mind! But I didn't; one of my biggest regrets. I want to encourage the girl who wrote to you. Tell her to Keep It Up!  Don't worry if people think you're rude. You're not rude; you are RIGHT!

PS. Almost forgot to mention, the umbrella idea is AWESOME!  After we had been attacked so many times, I started carrying a riding crop so I could smack any pursuing dog; but the umbrella is a much better choice for all your afore mentioned reasons! As always, you guys are providing us with invaluable advice and suggestions.  It is a great relief knowing there is a site such as yours to help dog owners. Their dogs are much better off because of it. Thank you!

The Michael Ellis School for Dog Trainers
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