A Step-By-Step Guide To Finding the Right Dog Food

A Step-By-Step Guide To Finding the Right Dog Food

We all have preferences about what we like to eat. If you have a picky dog, then you already know that dogs also have preferences on the dog food they like! But what do you do when your dog doesn’t want to eat any of food that you choose for them? While your dog has to like their food to eat it, there are ways that you can train your dog to love their food!

With luck, you’ll only need to follow step #1 to get your picky dog eating their food. Here’s how to do it.

Before We Get Started…

If your dog has suddenly refused to eat or is losing weight because they will not eat, please take them to the vet immediately. Sudden, extreme refusal to eat is a sign of medical illness.

Step #1: Stop Over-Feeding Treats

When you have a picky eater, many dog owners tend to give their pups more treats or even table scraps in an attempt to get their dogs to eat something.

Unfortunately, feeding them these kinds of foods too often can cause dogs to become picky about what they are willing to eat.

Don’t let your dog train you into feeding them treats because you are worried about them being hungry. If they’re hungry, they will eat!

Step #2: Limit Meal Time

When I was growing up, we gave my dog a big bowl of dog food each morning, and she ate it throughout the day. I never knew there was any other way to feed a dog!

Now, I always recommend that dog owners feed their dog two equal-sized meals per day. If you have a picky eater, you will want to limit how long they have to eat the food.

When you put out their morning meal, give them 30 minutes to eat it. After the 30 minutes is over, take the bowl away. Do the same thing at dinner time. Don’t give them extra treats if they start begging during this adjustment period.

Within just a few days, your dog will learn that they have to eat at meal times if they want to eat. Once they learn this, you can go back to regular treat feeding habits, but it’s good to keep to the 30-minute plan so that they do not revert back to picky behavior.

Step #3: Try Three Brands

If your dog still seems reluctant to eat and you’ve never tried another brand of dog food, you may want to try something that they will like better. Some dogs simply do not like the taste of certain proteins, and getting them to eat it will always be a struggle.

I recommend trying up to three different brands of high-quality dog food to find out what your dog likes. You may also want to try mixing in wet dog food with dry dog food to see if your dog prefers to eat a different texture.

Step #4: Change Food Gradually

If you decide to change your dog’s diet to a higher quality dog food, you will want to make this adjustment gradually so that your dog will not get sick or reject the food.

Start by mixing in ¼ the new food with ¾ the old food for one week. Then, switch to a half-and-half combo the following week. Finally, feed your dog a ¾ new food, ¼ old food combination for one final week before moving on to their new food!

By doing this, you can stop your dog from going on a hunger strike because they aren’t used to the new food. It is also good to transition slowly so that their bodies can adjust to the new levels of protein, fat, and other nutrients that they will be eating.

Keep Your Dog Eating Well

Even though it is frustrating when your dog refuses to eat their food, dog owners need to have patience in figuring out how to get them to eat well. After all, they keep us healthy, so we should keep them healthy, too!

It can take time to establish good feeding habits, but you will find feeding your dog very easy once they are established. Remember: Limit treats, no table scraps, set meal times, and test new foods.

Do you have any more tips on how to get a picky eater to enjoy mealtime? Make sure to share it with us in the comments – advice from other owners is always helpful!

Guest article written by James Shore of Labrador Training HQ.

Service Dog Training for Veterans Suffering PTSD

Service Dog Training for Veterans Suffering PTSD

A Former Marine’s Journey to Healing and Finding His Calling

Mike Pipkin never looked at dog training as a career. In fact, he wanted to be a Police Officer. But after two tours of duty to the Middle East, the Marine Corps veteran didn’t make the cut for the Police Academy because he suffers from PTSD.

That news was heartbreaking for Pipkin. He started down a slippery slope of depression and drinking. Until he was offered a chance to be a dog trainer. “I didn’t think I wanted to be a dog trainer, but I’ve found that I’m good at it and I take great joy in creating a bond with the dogs and helping others.”

Healing and Comfort for veterans with PTSD

This win-win scenario is part of the Dog Trainer’s Program offered by legendary dog training expert and author, Mark “Dogman” Castillero. Dogman Mark has trained over 10,000 dogs in his 40-year career and looks for the right people to come to his training facility in Vista to learn the ins and outs of becoming a professional dog trainer.

An Ideal Career for Veterans in Career Transition

Veterans in career transition are ideal candidates for a dog training career. In fact, Pipkin is one of three veterans who are part of the Pro-Train Innovative Dog Training Team.  Being a dog trainer, says Pipkin, is an opportunity for someone with PTSD to train a service dog for another person with a disability, even another person with PTSD.

“After the military, I didn’t want to talk about PTSD…I didn’t want to be ‘labeled’ as damaged.” As Pipkin struggled to find his place in civilian life, he found that the public and, especially, other veterans needed to be educated and how to seek help. A service dog, he found, provides healing and comfort to veterans who suffer from PTSD.

Dogman Mark trains his team to custom tailor their service dog to its owner’s specific needs.

Pipkin just returned from a national conference in Washington D.C. put on by the Association of Service Dog Providers for Military Veterans. Pipkin enjoyed learning new ways to be a better service dog trainer.

Service Dog Training Specific to the Owner’s Disability

He said that many training programs are cookie cutter and don’t train specific for a disease or disorder. Not so with Pro-Train.

Pro-Train is very hands-on and custom-tailors its service dog training. Dogman Mark encouraged Pipkin to learn how to train a service dog with the specific owner in mind. A person with PTSD needs a service dog that might sense anxiety and come to its owner’s aid before the owner even senses s/he needs the dog. “A service dog acts as a good distraction when my mind travels to bad memories, and it reminds me to breathe and refocus. A service dog is a great cuddler, too,” Pipkin smiled.

Do you know of a veteran in need of a service dog? Have them complete the Pro-Train Service Dog Application. And even if you haven’t thought about a career as a dog trainer but are encouraged by Pipkin’s story, send us an email at to learn about this very rewarding career.

“Shadow” served in the Marine Corps prior to deciding on a career in dog training.

Dogman Mark is taking registrations for a February 2018 one-day workshop. For just $149, attendees learn how to get trained right for a profitable and exciting career as a dog trainer. The six-hour training is held in North San Diego County. Spaces are limited, so sign up early.

To learn more about PTSD, contact the National Center for PTSD as part of the Department of Veteran’s Affairs. There are valuable resources on the site and a hotline for veterans that can literally save a life.





Dog Training Classes El Cajon CA

Dog Training Classes El Cajon CAAre you searching for the absolute dog training classes in El Cajon, CA?

Look no further – call Pro-Train!

With over 40 years experience Pro-Train certified dog trainers will provide the absolute highest quality private dog training lessons you’ll find anywhere in North County and El Cajon, CA!

Your results are 100% GUARANTEED for the life of your dog !!!

The Pro-Train team can help you with creating a truly loving and long lasting relationship between you and your dog.

Our private dog training program is professionally and personally customized for you and your dog.

Don’t wait another day – call Pro-Train now …

Dog Training Classes El Cajon CA

There is no dog too skittish, too aggressive, or too old.

Pro-Train certified dog trainers specialize in all aspects of dog training, dog obedience, and Private Dog Training including:

  • Dog Training
  • Obedience Training
  • Puppy Management
  • Puppy Biting
  • Dog Behavior Modification
  • Dog Protection Training
  • Service Dog Training
  • Guide Dog Training
  • Become A Dog Trainer

There are no bad dogs, just dogs who need Pro-Train!

Give us the opportunity to help you and your dog – you’ll be ecstatic with the results!

Call Pro-Train today …

Dog Training Classes El Cajon CA

What Areas Do We Service In San Diego?

We’re proud to be North County ‘s premier dog training school and service all areas in the city of El Cajon including: Alpine, Bonita, Bonsall, Borrego Springs, Bostonia, Boulevard, Camp Pendleton, Campo, Cardiff, Cardiff by the Sea, Carlsbad, North County, Coronado, Crest, Del Mar, Descanso, Dulzura, North County, Rancho Bernardo, San Diego, Fallbrook, Guatay, Imperial Beach, Jacumba, Jamul, Julian, San Diego, La Mesa, Lakeside, Lemon Grove, Leucadia, Lincoln Acres, Mount Laguna, National City, Nestor, Ocean Beach, North County, Olivenhain, Pacific Beach, Pala, Palomar Mountain, Paradise Hills, Pauma Valley, Pine Valley, Potrero, Poway, Rainbow, Ramona, Ranchita, Rancho Bernardo, Rancho Santa FE, North County (County Seat), North County State University, San Luis Rey, Rancho Bernardo, San Ysidro, Santa Ysabel, Santee, Solana Beach, Spring Valley, Tecate, North County, Valley Center, Vista, and Warner Springs.

What Local Zip Codes Do We Serve?

We serve the following cities and zip codes throughout North County, San Diego: 92101, 92102, 92103, 92104, 92105, 92106, 92107, 92108, 92109, 92110, 92111, 92112, 92113, 92114, 92115, 92116, 92117, 92119, 92120, 92121, 92122, 92123, 92124, 92126, 92127, 92128, 92129, 92130, 92131, 92132, 92133, 92134, 92135, 92136, 92137, 92138, 92139, 92140, 92142, 92145, 92147, 92149, 92150, 92152, 92153, 92154, 92155, 92158, 92159, 92160, 92161, 92162, 92163, 92164, 92165, 92166, 92167, 92168, 92169, 92170, 92171, 92172, 92174, 92175, 92176, 92177, 92179, 92182, 92184, 92186, 92187, 92190, 92191, 92192, 92193, 92194, 92195, 92196, 92197, 92198, 92199.

Dog Training Classes in the News

Planning commission backs academy classes near Vint Hill; dog training expansion in Goldvein – Fauquier Times

Wed, 26 Jul 2017 20:04:01 GMT


Fauquier TimesPlanning commission backs academy classes near Vint Hill; dog training expansion in GoldveinFauquier TimesSt. Michael’s Academy, a religious school now operating in Haymarket, received the backing of the Fauquier County Planning Commiss …

Read more …


Dog training classes offered – The-News-Leader

Wed, 28 Jun 2017 04:03:11 GMT


MassLive.comDog training classes offeredThe-News-LeaderThe Humane Society of Summit County is now helping dogs find and stay in homes by offering training for both shelter dogs and the public. The Humane Society offers a wide range of canine behavior …

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Dog Training Classes on Twitter

Jo Perez

Wed Jul 26 20:41:10 +0000 2017


RT @vetsmovefwd: Today our #ServiceDogsinTraining are having a training class. What is your favorite thing to teach your dog?

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High Priest Of Gavin

Wed Jul 26 18:14:20 +0000 2017


@ButtBoob @shoe0nhead @jimsgooddog @MsBlaireWhite @TherynMeyer @SenJohnMcCain … another chunk of combat training…

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Dog Training Classes on YouTube

Adolescent Dogs – Footage from dog training classes. Guildford, Surrey.

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How to Train a Dog to Pay Attention (

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Questions to ask before enrolling in dog trainer classes, San Diego, CA

So, you are planning to enroll for dog trainer classes, San Diego? That can be a great way for you to become more skilled and eventually become more expert in this field.

However, before you go to the training facility of your choice, ask yourself the following questions:

Is this really what I want? In every decision you make, it is imperative that you are absolutely sure that it is what you want; that you are passionate about dogs and their welfare. The truth is, there are those who enroll that do not finish the whole duration of the training course simply because they are not 100% sure that it is actually what they desire.

Do I have the ability to communicate effectively with people? Becoming a dog trainer isn’t just about dogs, but it also about dog owner education. An effective dog trainer does not only help dogs to acquire more skills but to effectively communicate with their owners as well about their responsibility. Dog trainer should be a good communicator.

Do I have the desire to help people? This is related to the second question. Try to assess yourself about your desire to help people. Passion to help dog owners is one of the key factors that help you become a successful dog trainer. It is important to note that people are not stupid; they’ll know if you are truthful about your profession or not. Being dedicated to your mission as a dog trainer is what builds your reputation.

Do I have the time and the resources for dog trainer classes, San Diego? Though there are quite a number of training facilities that offer courses at reasonable prices, the time factor, based on our experience with our trainees, has always been a challenge. So, try to assess yourself, are you willing to dedicate enough time to complete dog trainer classes?

If your answers to the above questions are affirmative, then your chances of becoming a successful dog trainer are high.

Looking for a reputable facility that offers dog trainer classes, San Diego? Contact us at (760) 749-0897 or 1-877-BAD DOGS.

Dog Summer Safety Tips

Dog Summer Safety Tips

Oh, how we love the dog days of Summer. Whether it be lazy days in the sun or a day outdoors near the lake, it’s important to remember Safety First for our four-legged friends.

Many folks with dogs love to take their pooches out to sea in the summer. With warmer weather and easier sailing, it’s not so unusual to see a furry four-footer playing the role of skipper!

However, there are plenty of safety considerations to take into account before bringing your pup on board.

According to Dogman Mark, all dogs should be equipped with a dog life jacket, as rough waves can pull under even strong swimmers. Dogs with light-colored fur are also very susceptible to sunburns, so you’ll need to apply dog sunscreen to your pup’s fur to protect them on the hot, sunny boat deck!

The folks over at K9 of Mine have published a new Dog Safety Tips Infographic that we’re sharing here in an effort to keep four-legged crew safe and secure this sailing season. Make sure to read these tips before you set out!

Does your pooch need training so s/he is ready for adventure? Or does your pooch need a safe place to hang out while you are away this summer? Contact Dogman Mark for more information on how he and his team can help.

pet socializaiton

Pets are Smart…and not easily fooled.


Compelling reasons to hire a professional for dog training, Oceanside, CA

It can’t be denied that it is quite fulfilling in our part as owners when our lovely canine learns new skills. For service dog for instance, it could mean a higher level of assistance it can render. So, knowing the importance of acquiring new skills for your dog, it makes sense to hire a dog training professional that delivers a more effective learning process for your dog.

If you are in the San Diego, CA area, a dog training, Oceanside, CA provided by professionals at Pro-Train can be a great help for your dog to effectively and efficiently learn a new set of skills.

Here are some of the reasons why hire Pro-Train:

Refined dog training process. A professional dog training facility like Pro-Train implements a dog training process that has been tested and proven to be effective for any breeds, for any types of training. From the assessment stage to the actual training process, you can rest assured that your dog can learn new skills based on its needs as determined in the assessment process.

Experts take care of your dog. Headed by Mark Castillero, the Director of Training for Pro-Train since 1978, you can rest assured that your dog is taken care of by experts who have decades of experience in training different breeds. Experts employ customized dog training methods; that is, training method based on the unique needs of your dog.

Ideal facility and equipment. Apart from the benefit of having an expert provider of dog training, Oceanside, CA, professional dog training institutes are also equipped with a training facility that is an ideal environment for your dog as well as the needed tools to make the training more effective and efficient.

Dog training professionals are licensed. Dog training professionals such as the ones at Pro-Train have obtained the necessary licenses that justify their expertise. With this, you are assured of the quality of the dog training services they render.

Interested in professional dog training, Oceanside, CA? Contact Pro-Train today at (760) 749-0897 or 1-877-BAD DOGS

Entrepreneurs with Disabilities: Strategies for Success

Entrepreneurs with Disabilities: Strategies for Success

Are you an aspiring entrepreneur with a disability? If you are, more than likely you’ve overcome challenges in your life in a unique way. So now that you have the vision and dream of small business ownership, it’s time to tackle the realities of running a small business day-to-day. Here are a few strategies to help your new business achieve lasting success. All these strategies and more are Mark Dogman Castillero approved and he wants to encourage you to live your dream. It’s not without hard work…so grab a cup of coffee and listen up.

Find and Retain Customers

No business can survive without a customer base to keep the cash flowing in. But to be successful today, you need more than a good product and word-of-mouth advertising.

The first thing you should do to market your business is create a solid online presence that’s informative, well-designed, and consistent across platforms. Hire a web designer or use a website builder to develop a mobile-friendly website, cultivate an engaging social media presence, and ensure information like hours of operation is accurate in search engine results.

Craft a succinct elevator pitch that showcases the unique aspects of your business, and pull it out when you’re networking with local business owners and potential clients. Ask customers to post reviews on Google, Facebook, and Yelp, and offer incentives for doing so. If your business relies on local customers, get involved in community events by sponsoring 5K races and children’s sports teams, or setting up a booth with free samples, gifts, or coupons at local events.

Disabled veterans can attract customers by advertising their business as veteran-owned. Depending on the industry, you may also choose to register as a service-disabled veteran-owned small business through the Vets First Verification Program to receive preference for government contracts.

Once you get people in the door, find ways to turn one-time customers into loyal clients. Build client relationships by showcasing the values of your business, like diversity and inclusivity, and showing a genuine interest in your customers. Reach customers at home through email marketing campaigns and blog posts. Blogging gives your customers insight into the workings of your business and develops your authority in the industry. Email marketing lets you offer deals and keep customers up-to-date on your business happenings.

Hire Great Staff

If your business needs employees, take time to find the most talented and enthusiastic people for the job. If you can’t afford to provide benefits like health insurance, find other creative perks to attract quality staff like ample time off, a flexible schedule, and professional development opportunities.

As an entrepreneur with a disability, you may be interested in providing opportunities to other community members living with a disability. Reaching out to a local Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, Veteran Integration Center, or disability advocacy organization are great ways to find talented staff looking for a new career. Beyond bringing in creative, motivated employees, hiring staff with disabilities can benefit your business by making it eligible for tax credits and creating a positive, inclusive brand that attracts customers and workers alike. Plus, when you recruit talented, trustworthy staff, you can delegate work so you’re not struggling to manage every aspect of running a small business on your own.

Prevent Burnout

One of the biggest threats to a budding small business is owner burnout. Your business is your brainchild, and you want to be there to manage every detail. But if you’re looking for long-term success, it’s important to take care of your mental and physical health. While this is true for every small business owner, it’s especially true for entrepreneurs with disabilities who have health care needs to attend to.

Manage stress by scheduling downtime into your daily schedule. Carve out 30 minutes to take a walk or practice mindfulness meditation, and set an end time for your workday so you don’t neglect self-care and relationships with others. Acknowledge that some days will be bad days, and take time to rest and recuperate when you need it.

Learn how to let go of complete control and delegate tasks. Create a quality product or service, but avoid getting hung up on perfectionism. The last thing you want is for your small business to become a source of anxiety that exacerbates your disability.

Running a small business isn’t easy, but when you focus on the health of the whole business, not just the bottom line, you can build a strong company that provides a rewarding career for years to come.

Questions to ask when looking for a service dog training, Oceanside, CA

With lots of facilities today offering a service dog training, Oceanside, CA, it can be a challenge for a dog owner to make a decision on which one to choose from a list of options. What are the questions to ask your prospective dog trainer? Asking the right questions will help you effectively assess whether or not a particular dog training facility fits your criteria.

Consider the following questions for your assessment:

Which breeds do you handle? This is given; a dog training expert should be able to handle different breeds, but it is still better to confirm it than knowing later that the trainer you hire does not cater to your breed.

How do you evaluate and determine the right training for a dog? Here at Pro-Train, for instance, professional dog trainers evaluate dogs by making an initial consultation that lasts 1-2 hours, and then recommend a training program based on the results. Evaluation will also identify a particular dog’s needs. For instance, it might need more training for behaviour modification, obedience training, among others.

What are the training methods you use? An expert dog trainer should be able to discuss with you several training methods that he is sure effective for your dog. If a dog trainer is able to explain the why’s and how’s of the training methods he recommends, that is a signal that your dog is going to have a good training ahead.

How much and what are the payment options? Of course, regardless of how good the dog training is if the price just doesn’t add up, it’s not worth-taking the offer. That said, it is imperative that you can ask about the cost early on and the payment options available. When it comes to cost, you might find it useful to know the prevailing average cost of service dog training, Oceanside, CA. This gives you an opportunity for a more easy comparison of costs and make an assessment on whether or not the offer is worth-taking.

The takeaway is this: Hiring for a service dog training, Oceanside, CA is one important decision you can make. It isn’t just the cost that you are going to decide about, but, more importantly, for your dog’s welfare. Therefore, you should not hesitate to ask questions before making a decision.

Looking for an expert service dog training, contact us at (760) 749-0897

Becoming a Dog Trainer: Living My Passion!

Becoming a Dog Trainer: Living My Passion!

Meet Saheed “Shadow” Lawal: Celebrating 2 Years at Pro-Train

A chance meeting at a local rider event turned out to be a game changer for Saheed Lawal. Affectionately known by the nickname “Shadow”, the Marine Corps veteran and dad of two recently celebrated his Two Year Anniversary with Pro-Train Innovative. Shadow shared about his success with the dog training school and his joy of doing something he loves.

After leaving the Corps, Shadow tried direct sales and knew right away this line of work was not for him. At the time he had his own German Shepherd and was told by friends that he should look into becoming a dog trainer. A futile search online revealed very few “hands-on” options.

That’s when fate stepped in. “I met Mark and ironically he was out of his Moose Rider cards, so he gave me his Pro-Train card.” Shadow looked into Pro-Train’s Dog Training School and really liked the options, ranging from a six-month program to a two-year program.

Shadow has now trained hundreds of dogs under the program. He points to the ability to gain experience while working and the range of skills he has learned. “I now have the confidence to manage and run my own dog training business, all thanks to Pro-Train. And, a career in dog training is a rewarding experience because I know I’m impacting others’ lives in a positive way,” he said.

To the person who is looking for a change of careers and is ready to take a leap of faith, Shadow gives this advice. “Just start, no excuses, jump in with an open mind and an open heart. Those who choose the path of dog trainer will be changed forever.”

To learn more about this exciting and rewarding field, grab a copy of More than a Dog Whisperer by Mark Dogman Castillero. Or, email Mark at You have nothing to lose…and it may be the game changer in your life!

Questions to ask when looking for a private dog training, Orange County

Questions to ask when looking for a private dog training, Orange County

With lots of facilities today offering private dog training, Orange County, it can be challenging for a dog owner to decide which one to choose from the list of options. This is why, it is important to ask the right questions. Asking the right questions will help a dog owner effectively assess whether a particular private dog training facility fits the criteria for best dog training service provider.

So, what questions a dog owner should ask a private dog trainer? One should not miss asking the following:

Which breeds do you handle? A dog training expert should be able to handle different breeds, but it still better to confirm it than knowing later that the trainer does not cater to your breed.

How do you evaluate and determine the right training for a dog? Here at Pro-Train, for instance, professional dog trainers evaluate dogs with initial consultation of 1-2 hours and then recommend a training program based on specific needs. Evaluation will also identify a particular dog’s needs. It might need more training for behavior modification, obedience training, among others.

What are the training methods you use? An expert dog trainer should be able to pinpoint several training methods that he is sure effective for the dog to train. If a dog trainer is able to explain the why’s and how’s of the training methods he recommends, that is a signal of a good training ahead.

How much and what are the payment options? Of course, regardless of how good the dog training is if the price just doesn’t add up, it’s not worth-taking the offer. Thus, it is imperative that a dog owner can discuss the cost early on and the payment options available. When it comes to cost, a dog owner might find it helpful to know the prevailing average cost of private dog training, Orange County. This allows an easy comparison of costs and makes an assessment on whether or not one is going to pay way higher than the average market price.

The takeaway is this: Hiring for a private dog training, Orange County is one important decision a dog owner can make. It isn’t just about the cost that one is going to decide about, but more importantly, on the dog’s welfare. Therefore, one should not hesitate to ask questions before making a decision.

For questions on Pro-Train private dog training, contact us at (760) 749-0897

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