Make Yourself the Ultimate Pack Leader

By November 07 | See Comments

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Dogs are loving companions who can help their owners in many ways, from relaxing on the couch together to guiding visually impaired pet parents around town. Every day, canines make a difference in people's lives.Livingston Daily reported that Karen Spear, a resident of Clinton Township, Michigan, has steadily been going blind her entire life. After visiting the doctor in 1992, she was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, a rare disease that damages the retina. Her physician told her there was no cure and that one day she'd be completely blind.Today, her sight is comparable to the circumference of a straw and she lacks peripheral vision, making her legally blind. Although Spear learned to walk with the help of a cane, she constantly bruised herself from bumping into things around the house. A friend

recommended Leader Dogs for the Blind

, a place where people can get help dogs, located in Rochester Hills, Michigan. Spear decided to get one, however, before she can bring her pooch home, she has to spend 26 days at the organization's campus, training with and learning about her new guide dog.There are approximately 90 dogs in the breeding stock at Leader, including both males and females who begin their training at just 3 days old. The choices of Leader Dogs are Labradors, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds and Labrador-Golden mixes. When the puppies are born, host families have to acclimate the pooches to being handled and introduce them to various textures and sounds. These volunteer homes are responsible for everything from basic training to socialization to get the canines prepared for their work as service dogs.Training is the most important part of the process, as these pooches need to respond to commands from their owners without hesitating. It's essential for pet parents to be

pack leaders

, too.

Establishing leadership with your new dog

During the first days of owning a pooch, it's critical for owners to create a

strong bond and balanced relationship with their new canine

, Cesar's Way explained. While becoming the

pack leader

takes time, following through on training is what builds the most strength in the household.The source suggested that owners start every day with a 30- to 45-minute walk, which is pivotal to your dog's physical and mental health. Rather than freely giving affection, use it as a reward for exercises that demonstrate obedience. Pet parents should also include the entire family in the process of training the new pooch because giving each member a responsibility reinforces the

pack leader

mentality.During the first weeks of owning your dog, sign up for PetPlus to purchase discounted accessories that can help make you the best

pack leader

.

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