They’ve been working like dogs! Animal Planet’s new series, Rescue Dog to Super Dog follows dog trainers Nate Schoemer and Laura London as they find shelter dogs and train them to be service dogs for people with emotional and physical disabilities.
The duo recently stopped by Us Weekly’s NYC headquarters to dish on their new show and share some of their best dog-training tips. And the best part? They brought a couple of adorable (and adoptable) pups from Best Friend’s Animal Society with them. Watch the video above to see how cute the pups are and get tips for dog training!
“It’s incredibly rewarding, not only to be able to help these dogs be rescued from the shelters, but then to give them the opportunity to go out and prove what they’re capable of, and helping people that need help as well,” said Schoemer, who got into dog training after retiring from the Marine Corps.
When asked whether any dog can become a service dog, Schoemer had some advice to share: “There are certain things we’re looking for right away. There are some dogs that are going to display behaviors that just will simply not make a good service dog – hiding in the back of the kennel, or the dog run. That dog that’s afraid and is having issues with its environment is going to be very difficult to train to be a service dog.”
When it comes to picking out your own furry friend, London urges, “Whatever you do, don’t go based on emotion.” And for families thinking of adding a four-legged pal, she advised them to sit down and discuss it. “Get everybody together and talk about what you all want out of a dog,” she said. “Make sure you’re all on the same page. And the pros and cons and who’s gonna walk and feed [them]. I work with a lot of families and all this stuff falls on Mom.”
According to Schoemer, the first thing you want to do when you bring a dog home is crate train them. “People think crate training is just teaching the dog to be inside the crate when it actually has a lot to do with potty training. People struggle so much with potty training … You’re preventing the dog from developing bad behaviors that they’re gonna end up owning their entire life.” And don’t forget: “Dog proof your house!” London added.
Rescue Dog to Super Dog airs on Animal Planet Saturdays at 10 p.m. ET.
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