Why You Should Consider Dremel Like A Boss For Your Puppy

This week in the 4 Paws Adrift Newsletter our featured client is a Puppy Culture puppy. It got me thinking how complementary Dremel Like a Boss is to the Puppy Culture program. Puppy Culture has a special place in my heart since my Newfoundland, Molly, and I were in the original Puppy Culture film.

Let me tell you why I think Dremel Like a Boss is a great addition to the Puppy Culture training plan for puppy owners. Your pup’s nails will need to be maintained their entire life. Following the DLAB curriculum as part of the training plan will provide problem prevention for your nail care and husbandry needs. The methodology used in DLAB follows the Puppy Culture ideals to allow the puppy to lead the dialogue and create a two way conversation between the pet owner and the puppy. DLAB like Puppy Culture meets your puppy where they are at!

How many times have I heard that my puppy does great with nails so I don’t need to train it. Here is the thing, you may have that “push button” puppy that will never mind their nails being done, but you don’t know that until it is too late. Why not spend a little time when the puppy is young to put a routine in place so you know your puppy will always allow you to maintain their nails? You will have to do your dog’s nails for their lifetime, so why not limit your risk and think about adding these four training tips to your puppy training plan?

Step 1: Create a valuable space where your dog’s feet will be handled in an intentional way. Allow your puppy to opt in or opt out of this space (allowing the puppy to lead the dialogue). Allowing choice early on in your routine creates a different mindset for your puppy and gives you a method to keep fear from creeping into this event. The space can be as informal (like between your legs or on a couch) or as formal (like a grooming table) as you want. If you are using a grooming table and your puppy is still too young or small to climb on and off safely, you must read your puppy and insert breaks before they get too stressed. Put them back on the floor to run around for a minute and then do another tiny session. To make this area valuable, allow your puppy to lick an enrichment item, such as a licky mat (Amazon Affiliate Link) or do duration feeding with a high value treat for several sessions before you start your foot handling. Here is a video resource from my five day nail care boot camp that introduces the opt in and opt out concept.

Step 2: Start impulse control around a food Zen Bowl right away. In Dremel Like a Boss, using “Zen Bowl Lite” is a game changer for a dog. This food focal point signals to your dog that this is a high paying event and gives them a place to focus on besides the tool (Dremel or nail clipper) and your handling. Start with this food bowl far enough away from your puppy so they are successful in allowing foot handling and not taking treats from the bowl on their own. You want to give your dog the treat from the bowl - we want you to be the keeper of all the good things. Your puppy allows a toe to be handled, they get a treat from their Zen Bowl and so on. This a great video that goes over stationing and how to train Zen Bowl Lite.

Step 3: Don’t start with a loud, high powered Dremel. Get a beginner quiet model to get your puppy used to the tool’s sound and vibration. For a budget friendly option, I like the Casfuy (Amazon Affiliate Link) which is a great, cheap very quiet rotary tool. Here is a video that talks about different Dremel options.

Step 4: Acclimate your dog to the tool’s sight and sound. Show your puppy the tool in their nail care space and then feed them. Turn the sound on or have the nail clipper make the sound in the nail care space then feed it. Splitting out these behaviors before you touch the tool to your puppy’s foot will set your puppy up to like the tool and not be suspicious. And I would do all of this training with your Zen Bowl.This video contains examples on training for sight, sound, and vibration of a Dremel tool. It will give you ideas on how to build up a training plan around these concepts.

I hope these tips help get you and your puppy started off successfully in your nail care journey!

If you are looking for ideas for a puppy training plan beyond nail care maintenance, check out the Puppy Culture resources.

Happy Grooming!



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