Puppy training and the 100-in-12 rule

Spring is the season for puppies. Puppy time flies by. So keep in mind that experts say you have a small window for socializing your little dog when it comes to puppy training.

Dog trainer Ian Dunbar, who founded the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, has an easy-to-remember guideline to follow when you’re getting out and about: He recommends that you help your puppy meet 100 new people before his 12-week birthday.

This might sound like an impossible feat when you’re up to your ears with puppy work, from house-training to puppy-proofing. But your pup can meet a number of people from a quick trip to the pet store for food (and not-yet-shredded toys!), or an hour at the park.

Rover.com blog // Boy playing with Black Lab puppy (Source: iStockphoto)

Dunbar and the Association of Professional Dog Trainers recommend a number of tips to help accomplish this 100-in-12 rule. Beyond trips to the park, it’s also easy to meet other puppy parents at obedience class. Holding a “puppy party” and inviting other young dogs to your house–along with their parents, and their children–is a great way to help socialize your dog.

If your pup is on the shy side, monitor how he or she reacts to larger groups. It may take time to get your dog accustomed to larger groups. Be patient. 

Did you keep track of how many dogs your pup met in his or her first months? Let us know in the comments.


Spring has sprung! Watch our new spring-inspired Rover Reel

Dear Rover Dog Owners and Sitters,

It’s finally spring! (At least, in most of the country, the weather is cooperating.)

To celebrate, we created a Rover Reel of our own that spotlights some very happy dogs. (Perhaps they’re happy that they won’t get snowballs stuck to their legs after a walk!)

Watch now.

Watching these frolicking dogs may make you think about how you’re in need of a weekend away. Be sure to book early, as holiday weekends get booked up! Or, maybe your big summer trip still needs booking–along with a sitter for your pup.

Rover.com blog: Celebrate spring with our Rover Reel

Don’t miss out on reserving your favorite sitter for your own springtime fun. Search for a sitter now 


The Rover Team


What’s in your dog first-aid kit?

What to include in your dog first-aid kit to be prepared in case of mishaps


What’s in your pet first aid kit? Being ready for a first-aid emergency is something no pet owner likes to think about, but it’s a necessity. April is National Pet First Aid Month, and it’s a great time to check on your first-aid kit or sign up for a refresher class so you’re prepared in case of an dog park injury or emergency.
I’m not recommending that every dog owner run out and create five first-aid kits to stash throughout the house (which my very prepared friend Amber has done, just in case an earthquake hits Seattle), but it’s just smart to have all the first-aid supplies on hand that pet experts recommend. 

Rover.com blog: Your pet first-aid kit checklist

The American Veterinary Health Association and the Humane Society of the United States have a list of of medicines and first-aid supplies to keep in a safe place. You should have a duplicate stash of these supplies in your car, too, just in case a visit to the park or goes awry. 

Dog first-aid checklist:

1) Your vet’s phone number and the number for your closest 24-hour emergency vet

2) A first-aid guidebook

3) Your pet’s vaccination history

4) A recent photo (in case your pet gets lost)

5) An extra leash

6) Gauze

7) Blunt-end scissors

8) Activated charcoal for accidental poisoning (contact Poison Control before administering)

9) Hydrogen peroxide

10) Ice pack

11) Tweezers, and an old credit-card for removing bee stingers

12) Cotton balls and swabs 

13) A penlight or flashlight

14) Nail clippers

15) Antibiotic ointment

16) A pet carrier

What else do you always pack in your pet’s first-aid kit? Let us know below. 

A special note: Here in Washington, we know all too well that you never know when an emergency may strike. We’re still reeling from the mudslide in the town of Oso. Many rescue dogs have been working tirelessly, and the Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue organization is accepting donations to help its rescue dogs recuperate from all their work. If you’re interested in donating, visit their website, or mail a donation to SCVSAR, Attention: K9 team, 5506 Machias Road, Snohomish, WA, 98290.  


Dog hacks: Making bath time easier with peanut butter

A little crunchy peanut butter can make your dog’s bath time go more smoothly

We love this trick from Erin H. in Seattle. Like many dogs, Watson, her Black Lab mix, sees bath time as something to be avoided at all costs. Erin uses an ingenious trick to get him to stand still as she shampoos him. 

She takes a spoonful of peanut butter and smears it on the (clean!) side of the tub. Watson happily licks at the peanut butter as she gets his shampooing done.

Here’s a shot of Watson enjoying his bath time treat:

Rover.com blog: Making bath time easier with peanut butter

What kind of hacks do you use to make life with your dog easier–for bath time or any time? Let us know in the comments below or email them to blog@rover.com, and you might see your hack featured here!