Husky Havoc RRT
Husky Training Tips

As anyone with a sibe can tell soon as you learn a trick to better train your
husky, your husky will learn an even better trick to train you. It's simply a fact of
life with sibes. You have to stay one step ahead of these intelligent beauties, because
if you give a Siberian Husky an inch, he'll run the full Iditarod over your sorry ass.
With that in mind, we've decided to share some training tips with you to help keep
the level of chaos in your house under control...well, more control than there would
be otherwise, anyway. However, it's only fair to give the sibes their say too. So
Malkin and Paikea will be sharing their own tips on how they've trained us....
You've been warned.

Of course, keep in mind that neither Ridley nor I are professional dog trainers or
certified animal behaviorists...we're just certifiable. So when in doubt, always
consult the professionals. These are just some of the tricks we've learned from our
own experience and from discussion with trainers, behaviorists, breeders, foster
families, rescue volunteers, and other crazy sibe people.
Our dogs, however,
are experts so you can trust what they say on face value.  
Malkin, Paikea, and Neenah's Tips on...
Counter Surfing

Fine, so the bipeds get their say on this one...scroll WAY down if you want to learn how to "stop" us from taking
food off your kitchen counters. Good luck with that one. Let us know how it goes ::evil grin::
Malkin's Tips on Counter Surfing:

The fine art of stealing is based on 4 things: patience,
diversion, silence, and speed. You gotta wait until the bipeds
are occupied with something else (the TV & computer work fact, read really quickly and get moving
right now and
you'll up your chances of success). Then you have to create a
diversion. Getting another dog to help you out is the best.
While 1 of us acts cute, the other 2 can nab some great stuff (I
once stole a whole pan of freshly baked cornbread thanks to
the cunning diversion of Paikea's belly being up in the air).
You're an only dog? No problem, you just have to be more
observant. Use whatever else is on the counter - the bigger
the mess it can make, the better. I once stole a package of
Busy Bones off the kitchen table; I was caught in the act, so I
just dumped over the can of Pepsi and ran like hell while mom
cleaned up the soda spill. Brilliant! Of course, if I hadn't made
so much noise, mom wouldn't have caught me, so silence is a
top priority here. Once you have what you want, run. Run like
the wind. Find a hidey spot, and enjoy the spoils!
Paikea's Tips on Counter Surfing:

Malkin's got some great ideas (OMG, did I just say
that?!). But you gotta choose your battles too. Like,
choose one food group that's worth working hard for (and
possibly getting caught for) and only really go for that
one. Cheese is a food group, isn't it? I choose cheese. Of
course, if there's a hamburger out on the counter, I won't
say no to it; my mama didn't raise no fool! Oh, and don't
forget: it doesn't matter how long it's been in the sink, as
long as it doesn't have dish soap in it, it's still good. But
stealing from sinks is louder, so make sure another dog
is wooing/barking when you stick your nose into the dirty
dishes. Oh, and one more thing...don't bother trying to
blame the mess on another dog (or cat). I swear it's like
bipeds know exactly who did what based on what the
problem was in the first place. It's so weird!

Got a training tip you'd like to   
share? It can be anything at all,
because let's face it - when it
comes to training our huskies,
we need all the help we can get.
Just email it to:
Look at how well behaved and quiet our
little angels are in their crates.

Hey all you huskies! Got any
tips you've used on your bipeds
that you
want the siberian world to know
about? Let us know! Email them
Any emails from bipeds reprimanding
us for our training tips will be printed,
peed on, shredded with unbridled glee,
and then deleted. Bribing us with the
promise of Yummy Chummies may or
may not help. Thank you for your
cooperation. Feel free to send us
Yummy Chummies anyway.
"What peanut butter? I
didn't see any peanut
butter jar...just laying out
on the desk...where
anyone could take it.
Nope, I didn't see a thing."
Seriously, you actually need a
caption for this one??
Neenah's Tips on Counter Surfing

Did somebody say surfing?! Cool, I love
water! When do we leave? I'll grab a picnic basket...can
Babydoll come?
Raven & Ridley's Tip to help prevent Counter Surfing:

Obviously, the first hint is not to leave anything tempting out on the counter unattended. Get
to know the length of your dogs' paw reach and always make sure that food is placed at least 4"
further in than that length. "Leave It" is a command heard often around here, for this and
innumerable other reasons. But it's one that can both save your belongings/food and save their
lives if what they want to pick up in their mouths happens to be toxic to animals.

We like to create our own diversions too. If we know that the bag of shredded Chedder is going to
be out on the counter for awhile, we always make sure to put it behind the head of lettuce or the
tightly sealed bottle of soda. Rule of thumb: anything
with a tempting aroma should be placed
securely behind anything that
doesn't have a tempting aroma. Or, simply placing the longed
for food item behind something loud can work too, especially when you're trying to break them
of counter surfing. It gets your attention quickly enough to give a verbal reprimand. Are they
too sneaky about it? Then you need to set them up. Fill an old plastic jar with coins, old
batteries, nuts n bolts, anything loud. Peanut butter jars filled with jingle bells and discarded
AA batteries work best around here, especially since our 3 sibes - like most dogs - are likely to
steal PB anyway. Set it up next to whatever it is the dogs are likely to steal. You don't want the
jar to fall on them and hurt them, you just want it to fall and make a very loud and unpleasant
noise (the higher pitched the better). This associates counter surfing with something negative,
making it a less desirable activity in general.  

Are they too smart to fall for the noisemakers? Yeah, Malkin is too. That whole pan of
cornbread he mentioned? We had covered it with foil so it would make noise if he got into it...or
so we thought. He managed to nose the edges up so quietly that we never heard a thing. Good
thing Malkin doesn't like water too much. This is where Super Soaker squirt guns come in
handy. Wait behind a corner, or act as if you're engrossed in the TV, but keep your finger on the
trigger as you'll have to move fast. Watch them out of the corner of your eye, when they think
they're getting away with it, shoot them in the ass or the tips of the ears. Then give the verbal
reprimand. You can even add a little vinegar to the water to create an unpleasant odor to go
along with it. For water loving dogs who think a squirt gun = play time (i.e., Neenah), I've heard
that using this same strategy only with whistles, dog whistles, and air horns works well too.

Counter Surfing can take a  long time to break them of since it requires you to know the exact
moment your dog is up to something. But with patience and consistency, it can pay I'm
told. I'm still waiting for that day too.