What’s Love Got to Do With It?



“Two Paws Up Tuesday”

Like human babies, puppies start out needing many small meals a day, of a food formulated for their special nutititional requirements.

Before we get into the particulars of puppy nutrition, let’s first consider the foremost pitfall of canine feeding. In theory, keeping your growing dog properly nourished is simple: Serve sensibly sized portions of high-quality chow, avoid feeding “people food,” and keep snacks to a minimum. In practice, this is easier said than done. the doleful gaze of a begging dog can be downright irresistible. This is no accident. During his long partnership with man, the dog has perfected cunning methods of exploiting the human neurosis that associates food with affection. In prehistoric times semi-domesticated canines first cultivated human beings as a food provider. As the two species grew closer, dogs modified begging behaviors to maximize results: The more pathetic a dog seemed, the more scraps were tossed his way. Dogs have since refined this approach into a low-risk, high-reward hunting technique.

It’s a deceptive way to hunt, utilizing the appearance of helplessness rather than ferocity, but don’t be fooled: Begging is not an emotional crisis or a test of your love. It’s what scientists might call an evolutionary survival strategy, or what the rest of us might call a scam. Allowing your dog to “guilt” you into over feeding him, or serving him a steady diet of table scraps in a misguided show of affection, can have harmful or even fatal results.

So don’t take it personally when the little con artist under the table goes into the old whimper-wheedle-and-whine routine. Simply ignore it, and find healthier ways of bonding with your pet.

1st year

6-12 weeks: Growing pups should be fed puppy food, a diet specially formulated to meet the nutritional needs for normal development. Feeding adult food will rob your puppy of important nutrients. Four feedings a day are usually adequate to meet nutritional demands. Large breeds should be on unmoistened dry food by 9 or 10 weeks; small dogs by 12 or 13 weeks.

3-6 months: Sometime during this period, decrease feedings from four to three a day. A pup should be losing her pot belly and pudginess by 12 weeks. If she is still roll-poly at this age, continue to feed puppy size portions until body type matures.

6-12 months: Begin feeding twice daily. Spaying or neutering lowers energy requirements slightly; after the procedure switch from nutrient-rich puppy food to adult maintenance food. Small breeds can make the switch at 7 to 9 months; bigger breeds at 12, 13 even 14 months. Err on the side of caution: Better to be on puppy food a little too long than not long enough.

After age 1: Dogs can be fed one hearty portion daily, but many owners feed adult dogs two half portions a day.

Feeding & Shopping

  • High quality premium puppy food
  • Nutritious low-fat, low-sodium treats
  • Food and water bowls of sufficient heft to prevent your dog from tipping them over

Information courtesy of: American Kennel Club

Training tip: Provided by Amanda Mondloch a RUFF Academy trainer. If you find an attached tick on your dog it would be a good idea to go get your dog checked for Lyme disease 6-8 weeks later (because that’s how long it takes to show up in the bloodstream). Lyme disease is very prevalent in our area so it’s a good idea to get your dog tested, especially if the tick was attached.

Fun Fact: Do you talk to your dog? 94% of dog owners say they talk to their dogs as if they were human, according to Impulse research for Pedigree.


The link above is full of information you should know for you and your dog. Please visit the website and see all the Pawsatively Rufferific information.

Looking for a place where your dog can play with others, like a dog park without the risks and dangers a dog park might have? RUFF Academy Real Life Dog Training has 35,000 square feet of outdoor space, plus an indoor space when the weather isn’t so favorable, for Fido to play with other like dogs. It is a supervised play session divided into groups to keep things safe. Have a small/timid dog? We have a play date for that. We also offer general play days along with large breed sessions. Visit the website using the link above for additional information.





A Process of Elimination




“Two Paws Up Tuesday”

Housebreaking your new puppy need not break you. With patience, diligence, and a calm, authoritative manner, you can teach your dog exactly where he should eliminate and where he should not.

Here’s a play-by-play of how to housebreak your puppy


  1. The key to success is simple: Timing is everything!!!!!
  2. Take your puppy outside immediately after eating, playing, or napping (approximately every two hours). Keeping this rigid schedule will prevent him from making mistakes in the house.
  3. Some trainers recommend giving your dog a command like “Potty time!” Or “Go to the bathroom!” At the moment your pup is correctly doing his business outside. Eventually, whenever you say that phrase, the dog will eliminate on cue.
  4. Much like a little boy who dances up and down when he has to go to the bathroom, a puppy’s behavior will let you know that he needs to go outside. If he whines, paces, or runs in a circle, grab the leash and get out the door.
  5. Mistakes happen. If you catch your puppy eliminating in the house-and he will-correct him with a firm, gentle “NO.” Take him for a walk and praise him lavishly when he does his business outside.

Steady As she goes

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and every puppy moves at his own pace when learning proper bathroom habits. Some figure out housebreaking in one day, others take months. You can make the training go smoothly with consistency; allowing for frequent trips outside (with plenty of praise); providing every meal regularly (at the same time each day); and always using a confident, authoritative, calm voice with your puppy.

An embarrassing incident

Some dogs, no matter how well housebroken, suffer from what is called “submissive urination.” This embarrassing problem, for man and beast, usually occurs when the “pack leader” of the household comes home, and the dog, so happy to see him or her, pees a bit on the floor.

When confronted with this bewildering behavior it’s important for owners to realize that the dog hasn’t forgotten his hard-learned housebreaking lessons. Owners should not get angry or chastise their dog. This only ensures that the dog will try even harder to appease them, and his pee is the only gift the pup has to give, the problem continues.

So what do you do? No admonishments, no yelling, no finger-pointing. Instead, when you enter the house, ignore the dog for a few minutes, giving the pup some time to cool his jets and greet you in a more “appropriate” way.

Consistency is key

Always feed and water your puppy at the same time every day. If he eats at regular intervals, he will relieve himself at regular intervals, too.

Even if you’re in a hurry, don’t bring the puppy back inside as soon he does his business. If you do, he will learn that once he eliminates, the fun walk is over and he’ll start to “hold it” for longer periods.

If you find that your dog eliminated in the house when you weren’t looking, and he has a remorseful, sad expression, do not punish him. Only punish and reward your pup for the bad and the good acts he performs while you are watching

Pooch Fun Facts: According to the AKC, the top 10 most popular dog breeds of 2016 were as follows

  1. Labrador Retriever
  2. German Shepherd
  3. Golden Retriever
  4. Bulldog
  5. Beagle
  6. French Bulldog
  7. Yorkshire Terrier
  8. Poodle
  9. Rottweiler
  10. Boxer

Information courtesy of: American Kennel Club

Training Tip: Provided by Megan Tershner a RUFF Academy Real Life Dog Training Agility Trainer. Remember agility is a social event. There will be lots of excited dogs and people around so don’t forget to socialize your dog properly so they know how to handle all the excitement in the air.


The link above is loaded with a wealth of information and classes to choose from. If your dog, does it, needs it, wants it, we’ve got it!!! Now offering Reactive dog training A walk in the Park. Held at a private location near Kohler Andre Park
MUST have a behavioral Consultation before joining class! NOT DROP IN
This class is for dogs that a regular class would not work, need socialization, has aggression of other dogs/people. Taught by 2 Professional Behaviorlists.


To Bite Or Not To Bite?




“Two Paws Up Tuesday”

It is Dog Bite Prevention Week and we will cover some important tips and signs you should know.

Increasing Safety, Reducing Risks:

To reduce the number of injuries from dog bites, adults and children should be educated about bite prevention, and dog owners should practice responsible dog ownership.

understanding dog body language is a key way to help avoid being bitten. Know the signs that dogs give to indicate that they’re feeling anxious, afraid, threatened or aggressive.

An aggressive dog may try to make themselves look bigger. Her ears may be up and forward, the fur on her back and tail may stand on end or puff out, and her tail may be straight up – it may even wag. She may have a stiff, straight-legged stance and be moving toward or staring directly at what she thinks is an approaching threat. She  may also bare her teeth, growl, lunge or bark. Continued approach toward a dog showing this body language could result in a bite.

An anxious or scared dog may try to make herself look smaller. She may shrink to the ground in a crouch, lower her head, repeatedly lick her lips, put her tail between her legs, flatten her ears back and yawn. She may look away to avoid direct eye contact. She may stay very still or roll on her back and expose her stomach. Alternatively, she may try to turn away or slowly move away from what she thinks is an approaching threat. If she can’t retreat, she may feel she has no other alternative but to defensively growl, snarl or even bite.

Many dogs can show a mixture of these body postures, indicating that they feel conflicted. Remember to avoid any dog showing any signs of fear, aggression or anxiety – no matter what else the dog is doing. It’s important to realize that a wagging tail or a crouching body doesn’t always mean friendliness.

Safety Tips for Children

Be aware of the fact that any dog can bite. From the smallest to the largest, even the most friendly, cute and easygoing dogs might bite if provoked. The vast majority of dog bites are from a dog known to the person – his or her own pet, a neighbor’s or a friend’s. You can help protect your child from dog bites by discussing with him or her the appropriate way to behave around dogs. Here are a few tips to follow and share with your children.

  • Children should not approach, touch or play with any dog who is sleeping, eating, chewing on a toy or bone, or caring for puppies. Animals are more likely to bite if they’re startled, frightened or caring for young.
  • Never approach a barking, growling or scared dog.
  • Don’t pet unfamiliar dogs without asking permission from the dog’s owner. If the owner says it’s okay, the child should first let the dog sniff his/her closed hand. Then taking care to avoid petting the dog on the top of the head, they can pet the dog’s shoulders or chest.
  • If a loose dog comes near a child, they should NOT run or scream. Instead, they should avoid eye contact with the dog and stand very still, like a tree, until the animal moves away. Once the dog loses interest, the child can slowly back away.
  • If a child falls down or is knocked to the ground by a dog, they should curl up in a ball with his knees tucked into his stomach, and fingers interlocked behind his neck to protect his neck and ears. If a child stays still and quiet like this, the dog will most likely just sniff him and then go away.

Recommendatins for Pet Parents

Although you can’t guarantee that your dog will never bite someone, there are many ways that you can significantly reduce the risk.

  • Adopt from a well-managed animal shelter whose staff and volunteers can fill you in on the dog’s background, personality and behavior in the shelter.
  • Spay or neuter your dog as soon as possible. Healthy puppies can be spayed or neutered as early as eight weeks of age. Spayed or neutered dogs may be less likely to bite.
  • Socialize your dog! Well – socialized dogs make enjoyable, trustworthy companions. We recommend that your puppy should interact with at least 100 people. Under socialized dogs are a risk to their owners and to others because they can become frightened by everyday things. It’s important for puppies to meet, greet and enjoy a variety of people, animals, places and things. Take your dog to reward based training classes – the earlier the better. Use the link below to register for a variety of classes! Early training opens a window of communication between you and your dog that will help you consistently and effectively teach good behavior.
  • Don’t wait for a serious accident to happen. The first time your dog shows aggressive behavior toward anybody, even if no injury occurs, seek a professional to help. The link below offers professional Behaviorlists to assist in this area.
  • Be aware of common triggers of aggression, including pain, injury or sickness, the approach of strangers or strange dogs, unexpected touching, unfamiliar places, crowds and loud noises like thunder, wind, construction, fireworks and appliances. If possible, avoid exposing your dog to these triggers, If they seem stressed or panicked in crowds, leave them at home. Work with a qualified behavior and training professional to help your dog become more comfortable with these and other situations. RUFF Academy Real Life Dog Training offers all the resources you will need to help you and Fido work through all of these challenges.

Some of the information courtesy of : ASPCA


Training Tip: Provided by Amanda Mondloch a RUFF Academy Trainer. Now that the weather is getting warmer it would be a good idea to get your dog on a flea and tick preventive – Lyme disease is no fun so be proactive and get some preventive medication from your local vet.

Fun Fact: The best place to socialize and get the best dog training in town is RUFF Academy Real Life Dog Training located in Sheboygan WI








Suffering in Silence, Know The Signs!




“Two Paws Up Tuesday”

Don’t let your pet suffer in silence. Knowing the common signs of stress in dogs can help you and your veterinarian identify and treat anxiety problems before they escalate.

7 signs of stress in dogs that you should be aware of.

  1. Wide, darting eyes: When you see the eye whites, something’s not right.
  2. Shaking: This sign could also mean that your dog is cold or in pain. If it’s occurring during a stressful situation, remove him from it. If you don’t know why it’s happening, call your vet.
  3. Stillness: A dog that suddenly freezes in an uncomfortable situation is not “being patient.” That’s his way of saying, “back off.”
  4. Yawning: Often mistaken for sleepiness, yawning can also be a signal that a dog is frustrated or becoming anxious.
  5. Pacing and panting: Like people, dogs may act restless or distracted when stressed. Panting, also a sign of excitement, exertion, and feeling hot, could be attributed to emotional discomfort.
  6. Obsessive licking: If your dog seems fixated on licking objects, himself, or you, he may be doing it as a desperate attempt to relieve anxiety.
  7. Humping: Frequent humping of other animals, pillows, toys, furniture, or your legs can be a signal that your dog is stressed.

Information courtesy of : American Kennel Club


Use the link above to contact a professional trainer, especially if your dog is expressing any, or all, of the signs of stress listed above.

Training Tip: Raise the Praise! Dogs aim to please, and praise from you comes with zero calories. Every time you give your dog a reward, pair it with enthusiastic clapping and a super-charged “Wheeeeee!”  That way, when you do a food-free rep, the praise will be as rewarding as the cookie…and much less fattening, too.

Fun Fact: A recent study found that extreme stress can make dogs’ muzzles go gray prematurely. 

Training Tip and Fun Fact provided by: American Kennel Club



The Fat and the Furry!




“Two Paws Up Tuesday”

The month of May has arrived, which is National Service Dog Eye Examination Month. May 1st-6th is National Be Kind To Animals Week and May 14th-20th is National Dog Bite Prevention Week.

Today, as part of National Be Kind To Animals Week we are going to talk about the risks of obesity in pets, and how to tell if your dog is a healthy weight. The latest figure in 2016 showed obesity affects 54% of dogs and many dog owners don’t know what a healthy weight looks like.

Veterinarians use a system called a “body-condition score,” which puts a dogs weight somewhere between 1 (emancipated) and 5 (obese), with 3 being the perfect weight.




Score 3 Perfect: Ribs and spine easily felt but not seen. There is an obvious waist from above and an abdominal tuck. Well-muscled and ready for action!

Recommendation: None

Score 4 Overweight: Hard to feel ribs or spine. Waist pear-shaped from above. Fat deposits in abdomen and over hindquarters.

Recommendation: This dog may have arthritis and needs to lose some weight for comfort.

Score 5 Obese: Large fat deposits over chest, back, and hindquarters. No waist visible, and the belly sags. Abdomen appears distended.

Recommendation: This dog must lose weight, as he is currently prone to back problems, specifically paralysis.

We already know maintaining a healthy weight for our body shape and height is important for our long-term health. We’re flooded with information about the health threats that come with being overweight, including increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, and joint pain. But often ignored are our dogs, who are getting fatter and fatter each year. We may offer food as a way of giving love, but the result is that many of our beloved pets are in pain, at risk for disease, and being cheated out of few extra years of life.

Multiple diseases are prevalent in pudgy dogs, including:

Joint Problems: Obestiy puts strain on the joints, leading to sore legs and backs. For long-backed dogs, like Dachshunds, the extra weight can make them prone to disk herniation.

Fat dogs of all breeds are prone to sore knees and hips, making walking painful and jumping a near impossibility. Dogs that are 80 pounds, when they should be 50 pounds is like comparing a person adding an extra 120 pounds to a 200 pound person. It’s no wonder these dogs are sore. And it’s an easily fixed problem. Just a 5% decrease in weight can make a tremendous difference in some arthritic dogs.

The “C” Word: Scarily, we also see an increased cancer risk in obese dogs. They are more prone to multiple types of tumors, including those in the liver, pancreas, and lungs. Veterinarians believe the prevalence is due to the body being perpetually in an inflammatory state.

Diabetes: Dogs don’t suffer from weight-related heart disease like people do, but excess weight can lead to diabetes. If you don’t want to be learning how to give insulin injections, keep your dog lean.

Information Courtesy of : American Kennel Club


Use the link above for various training resources and classes to choose from. RUFF Academy offers Board and Train, Service and Therapy Dog Training, Reactive Dog Classes and so much more! The hottest ticket in town is becoming a member of the RUFF Family.

Training Tip: Agility Training Tip courtesy of Megan Tershner a RUFF Academy Real Life Dog Trainer. When teaching your dog a new obstacle remember to train for accuracy first then add speed. If you go too fast, your dog will get sloppy or may even fall off the obstacle.

Fun Fact: If your dog is eating his food too quickly, put a ball (a tennis ball for big dogs or a golf ball for toy breeds) in his dish.