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How clever is your dog? A literature review sums up the evidence and if dogs were clever enough to understand, they wouldn’t be happy

A literature review carried out by researchers at the University of Exeter has reached a conclusion that may upset millions of pet owners: the combination of many different studies of animal intelligence suggest that dogs are no smarter than many other animals. You may think your pooch understands every word you say, you may believe that Rover knows exactly what is going on around him, and you may like to think that when he looks at you with his head cocked, that he has the intellectual ability of a super-smart mammal. The truth? He may be no smarter than a pigeon.
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Clicker Training – how does it work?

Clicker training is a very common way of teaching a dog a new trick, or skill, or behaviour. However, it can also be used in other animals - including cats, horses and even rabbits! The basic principle is very simple, but using it, we can teach our pets all sorts of behaviours by using a fun, positive method.
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5 things to think about when training rhinos (if you don’t have a rhino a dog will do just fine…)

Okay, so training a rhino is something that only a few people get to do. However, working close quarters with any animal can be enormously rewarding, especially when you achieve something together. Positive reinforcement training is the primary method used by professional animal trainers to work with their charges and it is a fantastic way to enrich an animal’s life and reduce potential stress.
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Why do dogs shake?

dog shake imageSometimes our dogs shake; from great big body rocks when they have been for a swim (the closer to you the better!), to tiny trembles, either all over or just in one limb. But why do they do it and should we be concerned?
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Why do dogs wag their tails?

There are few things more cheering than the sight of a wagging tail but what is your dog actually trying to tell you?  Certainly, it can indicate happiness but also a lot of other things as well!

  • A tail held high and vigorously wagged from side to side indicates its owner is happy and ready to play.
  • A tail held level with the body and wagged more slowly shows that the dog is in a situation where they are not quite sure what is going on but are interested and paying attention.
  • A tail held low and wagging only a little or twitching, is often showing that the dog is feeling threatened and you should approach and handle them with caution.
  • A tail tucked up and under the body means that the dog is frightened and showing submission.  With reassurance they may start to feel more confident but again, you should take care with them to ensure they don’t progress to growling, or even biting, to make the perceived threat retreat.
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