The Guilty Parties and Their Ringleader - The One With All The Mud On His Nose!
One night while I was watching the weather on TV, a young newscaster made a comment that went right to my heart. She said, “Freezing temperatures will make the ground hard, and the good thing is my dog won’t be tracking any mud into the house.” Immediately, the whole dog owning cast chimed in and agreed with her. Yay! Someone understands our dilemma. Dog owners do not like mud nearly as much as their dogs do. Most dogs don’t even seem to notice it. They happily jump up on your clothes, furniture, doors and track the brown stuff across the floor. What is a dog owner to do?
There are a few things that can help. First, trim the hair on your dog’s feet and pasterns. Long hair on feet and legs just brings in more dirt. If you are uncomfortable doing this chore let your local groomer to do it. It only takes a few moments and your dog will be more comfortable. Second, teach your dog to sit. Yes, he should know this already but may not wait patiently when he comes in the door so you can towel off each foot. Put a non slip mat by door, large enough for your dog to sit on comfortably without getting any mud on the floor. Immediately, when your dog comes inside ask him to sit. You can do this by putting treats in your pocket. Hold the treat up over his head and move it backward. Pull up on the collar, push down slightly on the hips. Your dog will sit and get rewarded. You may want to use a leash for control. Practice these sits five times each session, two sessions a day. Soon your dog will be sitting in the right spot. Toweling off muddy paws makes a big difference in what will be tracked into the house.
A product that is sold in some of the equipment catalogs and at the discount pet stores is self-rinsing shampoo. This can be used in a spray bottle and toweled off for even cleaner paws. Now, what to do about the door? Actually I am getting ready to paint mine a nice shade of mud, er, brown.
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