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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, September 29, 2002

Training your dog is good for both of you

Hawaiian Humane Society

Animal behaviorist Wendy Mah of Sirius Puppy Training says all dogs can benefit from training.

Hawaiian Humane Society

Get a brochure

To receive the humane society's new brochure, "How to Choose a Dog Trainer," call 946-2187, ext. 223, or stop by the shelter and pick one up.

Society news

Love-a-Dog Month: Dogs adopted from the humane society during October go home with free food, free heartworm preventative, and a free photo and frame. Dogs and their human companions will enjoy K-9 Game Day on Oct. 23 from 9 a.m. to noon at Thomas Square Park (free).

Hear Dr. Marty Becker when he speaks at Central Union Church Parish Hall, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Oct. 23; admission $5.

Get a coupon for a free microchip ID when you purchase the new Adopt-A-Dog T-shirt from Crazy Shirts at Ala Moana Center or Pearlridge in October. For more, phone 946-2187, ext. 370, or see hawaiianhumane.org.

A well-behaved dog will give you love and companionship for his or her entire life, and you both will be rewarded with many years of joy.

The Hawaiian Humane Society encourages training to help your companion animal become a wonderful family member and good canine citizen. A dog who responds to cues like "come" and "sit" is not only a better friend, but will be safer too.

Training with positive methods will help your dog learn important skills and behaviors, and assure a wonderful relationship that will last a lifetime. Since October is Love-a-Dog month, it's a good time to start spending extra time with your animal companion and increase communication and obedience. It's fun for both of you.

Whether working with your dog on your own or in a training class, positive training methods are the right choice. Animal behaviorist Wendy Mah of Sirius Puppy Training in Honolulu offers classes for dogs of all ages. Mah says, "Puppy classes offer many advantages, especially early socialization with other dogs and people, as well as establishing a bond between the puppy and his family. Dogs of every age can learn and benefit from training. Techniques may vary, but training with patience and consistency on your part, and praise and rewards for your furry friend, is the best approach."

"Come" is the basic and most important command — it can keep your dog away from danger and from endangering others. In order to work, "come" needs to be a command that your dog is happy to hear, which means it never should be used to call a dog for punishment. "Come" should be accompanied by a treat, a pat on the head and kind words.

Your cues should be consistent. If you say "here, boy" one time and "come now" another, your dog will get confused. Pick one word and use it sparingly, or your dog will learn to come only after the third or fourth call. And keep in mind that distractions can be extremely confusing to your canine companion.

Dogs can be trained at any age. "You can use the same techniques with puppies and older dogs," said Mah. "Puppies learn quickly, but forget easily. Older dogs may take a bit longer to learn, but it sticks in their minds better.

Simple words like "come" and "sit" form the basis for a well-behaved, responsive dog," said Mah. "But don't stop there. ... Dogs enjoy learning new things, and best of all, they enjoy pleasing you."

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Tag No. 09315

Apiki is a gorgeous year-old cat with longer fur and an exceptionally fluffy tail. Friendly and confident, he gets along well with other cats. Meet Apiki in Room 1 at the Cat House today.


Tag No. 09220

There is a lot of Noki to love. This strong, handsome 9-month-old male is still a puppy, with a rottweiler-mix heritage, so he will grow just a bit more. Noki is already in training and learning good manners.

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The Hawaiian Humane Society & McInerny Dog Park at 2700 Wai'alae Avenue are open Mondays through Fridays, noon to 8 p.m., weekends and holidays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The incoming animals area always is open. If you've lost or found an animal, call the humane society immediately at 946-2187, ext. 285. The Web site is www.hawaiianhumane.org.