As a Canine Good Citizen Evaluator, if you would like assistance in training your dog, I'm happy to help. Since moving to Arizona I no longer have the training facility for classes but am happy to come to your home and give you some guidance.
AKC STAR Puppy, Canine Good Citizen and Therapy Dog Program
We believe every dog should be a well-mannered and happy dog. The STAR puppy and CGC training provide an excellent way for you to bond with your dog and build their confidence.
The STAR Puppy program requires you attend at least six classes. To learn more about the program go to:
To learn more about your dog becoming an AKC Canine Good Citizen or Canine Good Citizen Advanced go to:
The purpose of this program is to recognize AKC dogs and their owners who have given their time and helped people by volunteering as a therapy dog and owner team.
To learn more go to: https://www.akc.org/products-services/training-programs/akc-therapy-dog-program/
Puppy Culture is a complete program of over 50 lessons from whelping box to new home that is scientifically proven to greatly improve outcomes for puppies! From early neurological stimulation, to aggression prevention, to potty training and leash walking, it's all there!
I have been a member of the ATFTC since 2008 and have had the privilege of serving on the ATFTC leadership team for over four years. If you are interested in becoming a member, seeking additional information about the breed or a breeder in your area, please visit our website at www.atftc.com
What do you feed your dog?
Currently my food of choice is Purina Pro Plan Adult Small Breed Shredded Blend Chicken and Rice Formula. My experience with the TFT is that they are not interested in "puppy food". By the time they leave for their new home, they are eating like the big dogs!!
What do I need to have before bringing my puppy home?
Shopping for a new puppy is so much fun!! You will receive a puppy bag with your new puppy that will have items to get you started and help you see what your puppy enjoys. The items you will want to provide your puppy with a safe and confidence building environment are:
Do I have to have a crate?
Yes. Your puppy will be used to a crate when you get it. It will have learned it's crate is a safe place to go when life gets too overwhelming. It is not a tool to be seen as punishment or isolation but rather a place of comfort and retreat.
The crate is a safe place for your dog when traveling just as carseats and seatbelts are for people. Besides possible injury, it also keeps your dog from running away or not allowing someone to provide help you may need.
Puppies especially need that safe place if you are unable to be home with them all the time. Embrace the crate... it is your friend.
Any tips for Potty Training?
Be patient and positive. Puppies have accidents and they are not doing it to get back at you for anything. Resist the temptation to scold your puppy for going in the house. You and your family are the people they should NEVER fear. My motto is, "ignore bad behavior and reward good behavior".
Your puppy will need to potty shortly after they have been eating, playing, or sleeping. Consistency is the key. Determine ahead of time where you might prefer your puppy to relieve himself. Just going outside may not be enough, ie your patio, deck, steps or perhaps a specific place in the yard? Take your puppy to that spot each time you believe he needs to go. Once you are there a simple command like "potty, potty" of "do your business" is all you need to say and then just wait. No more talking. Once he begins to go, stay quiet until he is completely finished, then praise with "good potty" or "good job" and reward with a high value treat but just a little. If you praise before he's finished, he may finish when you get back in the house. Ugh!!
If you think it's time he should go but after a few minutes nothing has happened, go in and place him in his crate for 10 or 15 minutes and try again. Once again, the crate is your friend.
Remember it's temporary. Small dogs have a bad repuation for being difficult to train but the TFT desires to please and will get it right with love and patience.