Tips for Housetraining Your Puppy

Tips for Housetraining Your Puppy | Tipsaholic.com #pets #training #dogs

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When to start housetraining

Start housetraining your puppy the minute you get home. When you bring your new family member home, put your pup (on a leash) down where you’d like him to go and give him about 10 minutes to go to the bathroom. If your puppy goes, be sure to say something like “go potty” as soon as he starts so that you can use that command in the future. When he’s done don’t forget to praise the heck out of him or her!

Must have: dog crate

Housetraining will be ten times easier if you have a dog crate for your pup! When you’re not watching your puppy put him in the crate and because it’s a small confined area this will become what they consider their home and will likely not have an accident in there unless it’s a real emergency.

The general rule for a dog crate is that they can stand up, turn around and lie down in it easily. However, it shouldn’t be so big that they can go potty in the corner and lie down across the crate. The Midwest Life Stages Crate is great because it comes with a divider so you can use it over the course of the dogs life and just adjust the size and you won’t have to keep buying bigger crates as he grows. Just make sure you get the appropriate size for how big you estimate your dog will be.

Puppies have small bladders

Since puppies are small, their bladders are as well. You also have to keep in mind that not only are you training your dog to do their business outside, you’re also training them how to hold it. If you’ve ever potty trained a child, you understand that the idea of “holding it” isn’t something you’re born with, it’s a learned behavior.

Because puppies (and smaller dogs, too!) have small bladders and aren’t used to holding it, you will have to let them out more frequently at first. My rule of thumb is every two hours is best, at least for the first few days. As your puppy gets good at holding it you can bump it up slowly. Maybe up to 3 hours for a few days, then 4 hours for a few days, etc.

Once your dog is trained he or she should be able to hold it for up 8 hours, depending on the dog. But you can’t expect them to hold it all day. Remember to let your dog out before you leave the house and when you get back to prevent accidents!

Extra tips

  • Always let your dog out 30 minutes after a meal, after a nap, after a bath and first thing in the morning. These are times when they’ll almost always immediately want to relieve themselves.
  • Praise is good when they go where you want, when you want. A small (pea sized) treat the second they finish and some petting is great positive reinforcement.
  • It’s better to prevent than punish. Punishment doesn’t work well with dogs. If you can’t watch your puppy closely, put him or her in their crate to prevent it from happening in the first place.
  • Get used to the signs your dog gives before they go to the bathroom. Most dogs sniff/circle around right before they squat or lift their leg. If you can catch them before the act you can take them outside before they have an accident.
  • If your catch your dog having an accident make a loud noise or clap to startle them and get them to stop. Then silently scoop them up and put them outside to go. They may or may not continue, but if they do, praise as usual.

It takes a while to train a puppy, but the more consistent you are, the better the results! Also check out these great tips for basic obedience training!

About the Author: Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days doing freelance blog design. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life or follow along on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest.

Featured image courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens.

 

The Basics of Dog Obedience Training

Basic Dog Obedience Training Tips and Tools via Tipsaholic.com

Teaching your dog a few simple commands can make life a bit easier for both of you. For example, if you can teach your dog to sit and stay, you can use this before opening the front door without the risk of your dog running out into the street or overwhelming a guest as they walk in the door.

Every pet owner should teach their dogs at least a few basic commands and use them on a regular basis. Making your dog sit quietly before meals, when children are around or just for fun are great tools to have to help control your pet since we can’t talk to them and tell them what we need from them. We’ve got the basics of dog obedience training to get you started.

4 Basic Dog Obedience Tasks You Can Teach At Home via Tipsaholic

Tools for training

  • Treats: go for smelly, soft, tiny pea-sized treats like these. The size is great for training because they don’t take your dog long to eat and you can move on quickly.
  • Treat Pouch: you can keep treats in your pocket, but it gets a little messy and you’re going to end up smelling like treats all day. This one is great because it clips to your belt or pocket.

Tips before you begin

  • Keep training sessions short, maybe 5-15 minutes so your dog doesn’t get bored and restless
  • Stay positive! Do NOT punish or get frustrated with your dog if they don’t get it right away. You want your dog to look forward to training sessions. If you start to get angry or frustrated end the session and try again later.
  • Try not to use a voice command at first, saying “sit” a million times when he doesn’t know what that means will just cause him to ignore that command. Once you have the hand gesture down then you can add a voice command to it. But again, avoid saying it over and over and over. If they aren’t doing it they either don’t understand the command or are too distracted.

 

“Watch Me”

One thing I recommend is to teach a dog to pay attention to you. This command basically says, “Hey, look at me, I’m going to give you a command”.

To start call your dog over, as soon as he looks at you, say “good, watch me” and give him a treat. That’s basic idea. You can do this randomly throughout the day and have a quick 5 minute session where anytime he looks at you, you say “good, watch me” and he gets a treat. Soon you should be able to call your dog over say “watch me” and have him know to look at you, even if there are some distractions around.

 

“Sit”

A basic command is the “sit” command. To train your dog to do this, have a treat between your thumb and fingers so your dog can see and smell it. Then slowly guide your dog into a sitting position by moving your hand over to your dogs nose and then up, kind of in a swooping motion. You might have to go slowly, let you dog sniff the treat and then move your hand up over their head. Naturally, most dogs will sit so that they can lift their nose higher. You might have to do this a few times, but eventually your dog will get it.

 

“Down”

To train a dog “down”, put them in a “sit” first. Take a treat between your fingers and hold it in front of the dogs nose then slowly bend down, pulling your hand (and the treat) down to the ground. Your dogs nose will follow and he might lie down right away.

If he doesn’t lie down try twisting your wrist with the treat so the back of your hand is blocking the dog’s nose from the treat. Most dogs will try to reach around with their noises. Another trick is to slowly pull your hand towards you (still on the ground) so the dog will lie down to get closer to it.

If your dog gets up to get the treat when you pull away, that’s fine. Don’t give him a treat, put him into a sit and try again. You’ll eventually figure out what works to get your dog into a down position.

Once your dog gets the idea you won’t have to bend down and eventually you’ll just be able to point down and your dog will understand that signal.

 

“Stay”

The best way to train your dog to stay is to have him in a “down” because he’s less likely to get up.

While your dog is lying down, put your hand up as if to say “stop” and take a few steps back. If he doesn’t get up, walk back to him and give him a treat. As your dog gets good at this you can move farther and farther away, turn your back or even leave the room.

When you want to release your dog just walk back over and say “ok” to let him know he can get up.

 

About the Author: Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days doing freelance blog design. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life or follow along on FacebookInstagramTwitter or Pinterest.

How to Organize a Pantry

How to Organize Your Pantry via Tipsaholic.com


It takes a bit of time to thoroughly organize a pantry, big or small, but in the long run it’ll save you time. Plus, opening up the pantry doors to find a neat, organized space is always a good thing! Start a great organization system with these 5 steps.

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5 Steps to Organize a Pantry

Start from scratch

The best way to start is to pull everything out. Once everything is out of the pantry you can throw out expired items and see everything you have. This also gives you a chance to wipe down all the shelves and remove anything that doesn’t belong there.

 

Sort by type

While everything is out of the pantry sort everything by type. Pastas, canned items, cereal, etc. Bunch them together in groups on your kitchen table or floor so you can have an idea of how much space is needed for each item and how you might want to store it.

 

Containers for storage

For things that don’t stack well like seasoning packets, bags of marshmallows, etc. add a few baskets or bins to the shelves in your pantry to keep them organized rather than just throwing them anywhere. These are great because they’re clear and you can see what’s inside! If you want to make your pantry a little more stylish try some metal baskets!

Also consider storing things in different containers than what they come in from the store. Things like flour, sugar, quinoa and more usually come in large bags that are odd to store. Get some large mason jars, cute glass jars like pictured above, or plastic containers (these ones looks amazing!) to repackage everything and make it more convenient. You can even spend a month or so collecting jars from old pasta sauces, etc and use those.

 

Organize

Since you already have everything sorted, you can slowly put everything back into the pantry in an organized manner. Remember to keep the lighter items near the top and the heavier items (like cans) near the bottom, especially if you’re in an area that has earthquakes.

 

Label

Not everyone wants or needs labels, but it can add a little touch especially if you buy or print up some pretty labels. You can label baskets, bins, shelves or even the containers themselves. The great thing about this is that while the primary food shopper or cook in the house might know where everything is, but if everything is labeled anyone can come in and find what they want quickly. Another plus to that is that no one has to shuffle things around messing up your newly organized pantry!

 

Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

 

5 Tips for a Successful Yard Sale

5 Tips for a Successful Yard Sale | Tipsaholic.com #cleaning #home #organization #yardsale

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Each summer, yard sales become popular and everyone crowds driveways and yards to get great deals on second-hand items. Have you ever had a yard sale? What can you do to ensure that it runs smoothly?

 

Advertise

The best advertisement is signs. Great big signs with just “Yard Sale” and a large arrow. Pointing your customers in the right direction is always better than just putting your address on the sign and hoping they know how to get there.

 

Take Time to Prep

The more organized you are, the less hectic it will be the morning of your garage sale. You want to make sure that you have everything set up before people arrive so you can focus on answering questions and collecting money. Have everything you need near the door or ready to go in the garage. Boxes sorted by categories along with any supplies you’ll need like price stickers or tags.

 

Have Change

This is something a lot of people don’t think about when preparing for a yard sale. You don’t want to turn away customers because you don’t have enough change. I recommend at least $50 in change, that means mostly $1’s and $5’s.

 

Have Help

Running a yard sale on your own can be really stressful, especially if you have a lot of stuff. It’s hard to run inside to go to the bathroom or try to talk to and collect money from several customers at once. Ask a friend or two if they have some stuff they’d like to sell too and that way you’ll have some help in case things get busy or you need a break to get a drink or some food.

 

Have FUN!

Yard sales are fun and you can make a good amount of money all while cleaning out the clutter. Interact with your customers, make them feel comfortable, and enjoy yourself.

 

Author: Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur, and animal lover. She lives in a small California town with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

 

Featured image courtesy of Better Homes and Gardens.

6 Simple Ways to Lose Weight

It can be tough to lose weight when you already have a lot of other things on your plate like work, hobbies or family. Here are some simple tips that you can use in every day life to burn or save some extra calories.

6 Simple Ways to Lose Weight - Tipsaholic.com

6 simple ways to lose weight - Tipsaholic.com

1. Find exercise in daily life

Whether you just can’t find the time or motivation to exercise or you’re already at the gym five days a week, find ways in your daily life to burn a few extra calories. Take the stairs or park your car farther away are two simple, but widely known ways to fit some extra cardio in your day. If you work at a desk, get up every hour to take a quick walk around the office or to get a drink of water.

2. Use smaller plates

Dinner plates are gigantic these days. If you use a small salad plate instead and load that up, you’ll think you’re eating more because the plate is full. Plus, if you’re using a large plate it’s easy to over-serve yourself. With a smaller plate, there’s a chance to stop and think if you’re really still hungry before going in for seconds.

3. Drink water all day

Not only is staying hydrated good for you, it’ll help you eat less. Often people will mistake thirst for hunger. Keep a glass or bottle of water next to you all day and you will drink it because it’s close. Before you sit down to eat a meal, drink at least half a glass of water and there won’t be enough room to over eat without feeling extremely full.

4. Save it for later

Whether you’re at a restaurant or at home, keep a reasonable portion on your plate and pack the rest up for later. As soon as the waiter brings your food to the table, ask for a to-go box and stash half of it away. If you’re at home, quickly serve yourself and then put the rest away to deter yourself from going in for second.

5. Snack

Eating throughout the day keeps your metabolism going and prevents you from feeling famished at meal times. If you keep healthy snacks around there’s less of a chance that you’ll go looking for food between meals and end up eating something unhealthy.

6. Eat your vegetables

Your mother told you to, but you may or may not have listened. Load your plate up with veggies! Pile vegetables on your plate first and then everything else rather than the opposite. If you fill your plate half way with vegetables first, there’s only half a plate left for everything else.

 

Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

4 Tips for Shopping on Craigslist

Buying second hand is a great way to save money and help out the environment, too. Besides thrift stores and yard sales, a great place to shop is on Craigslist. If you live near a large city, it’s likely that city will have a local Craigslist classifieds site. Craigslist is great for so many things such as buying used (and even new) household items and furniture, finding jobs, etc. Today I want to give you four helpful tips to keep in mind when shopping on Craigslist.

 

Tipsaholic - 4 tips for shopping on Craigslist

Tipsaholic 4 Tips for Shopping on Craigslist

1) Safety First: Keep in mind that not everyone on Craigslist may be as honest as you are. It’s always smart to stay safe. Never send money online via PayPal or any other method. Always meet face-to-face and only deal with cash. Be sure to bring someone else with you or at the very least meet somewhere where there are people around and tell people where you’re going. Most people don’t have any problems buying items on Craigslist, but it’s best to play it safe.

2) Search Smart: Searching is part of the game of Craigslist. If you’re looking for a new dining table, think of all the different words you could use to search for one. For example, “dining table”, “diningtable”, “kitchen table”, “dining set” or just “table”. People describe things differently so if you’re not finding what you’re looking for try a few more searches and you just might find the perfect piece!

3) Check Back Often: It can take days, weeks or even months to find the perfect piece. If you check back daily, you have the best chance at scoring exactly what you’re looking for at the best price on Craigslist. The best, most sought after pieces will go fast, so checking for them constantly will give you a better chance of getting to it before someone else.

4) The Inspection: It can be exciting to find the special piece you’re looking for, but don’t forget to inspect the item before buying it. Often times sellers will leave out small imperfections that you might catch. This can help in negotiations. It never hurts to offer what you think is a fair price, especially if you find some damage that you’ll either have to live with or repair.

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Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

Meal Planning on a Budget in Just One Hour Each Week

Family Menu Planning -- 1 Hour, Once A Week, On A Budget via Tipsaholic.com

Whether your family is going through tough times or you would just like to spend less at the grocery store, sticking to a budget can be tough. One of the most important tips to keeping your grocery bill low is to meal plan and I’m going to show you how to do with without spending hours each week on it.

If you don’t already meal plan and have a budget to keep to, you should give it a try. Sitting down for an hour each week can make shopping and mealtimes less frustrating for everyone.

Start simple: grab a piece of paper and write down every day of the week. Below each day you will write down a meal that’s planned for that day. On the back or another sheet, write down your shopping list of what you need for each meal.

1-Hour Budget-Friendly Weekly Menu Planning via Tipsaholic.com

Here are some tips to make the most of your meal planning:

Take Inventory

Every week, before you sit down to meal plan, take a quick inventory of what you already have. If you have so much food that you think it’ll take you forever to do this, then it looks like you have a lot of food to help you save over the next couple of weeks! Just quickly jot down what’s in your fridge, freezer and pantry. Make note of any produce or food that is going to expire soon so you can be sure to use them this week.

 

The Weekly Ads

Before you start planning meals for each day, go through all of your weekly grocery ads and write down anything that’s a good price that you could use for a meal. The key is to try to plan as many meals as possible around what is on sale or already in your house so you hardly have to buy anything at full price. If tortillas and canned beans are on sale, maybe you should have a taco night. If broccoli and dry pasta are on sale, try having some pasta with broccoli and alfredo sauce.

 

Keep a Price List

If you know what a really good price is, you’ll know when to buy a little extra to stock up. Some people can keep track mentally, but if you have a lot of staples that you need to keep track of then it might be best to have a sheet of paper in your recipe binder or on the fridge. Everytime you buy something that you buy frequently, write down how much you bought it for. After a while you’ll see what the best prices are and can buy a few extra next time it’s at a really good price.

 

Collect Recipes

If you often come across recipes online or in magazines, make sure you save them all in one place so they’re easily accessable. I have a recipe binder and will print recipes I want to try. After you’ve gone through your inventory and seen what is on sale this week, flip through your recipes and find any that are based around sale or inventory items.
Meal planning can really be a money saver and a time saver if you do it right. One big trip to the store each week beats two or three trips because you’re out of something and will also save you money on unplanned items you pick up each time you go. Knowing what’s on the menu each night for dinner takes a lot of stress out of the equasion so that you can enjoy your meals!

 

Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

A Clean Kitchen in 20 Minutes or Less Daily

clean kitchen in 20 minutes a day

Image Source Better Homes and Gardens

 

Kitchen Clean Up Tips in 20 Minutes or Less Daily

Keeping a clean kitchen is no easy task for anyone. Between the crumbs, spills and splatters a kitchen collects on a daily basis, it’s easy for it to all build up until you need to spend half your weekend in your kitchen cleaning. Here are some quick daily practices you can follow to keep your kitchen tidy in less than 15 minutes each day.

 

Start with a new kitchen rule:

Dishes get washed or put in the dishwasher immediately. Your sinks job is not to collect dirty dishes.

 

Wipe down that sink after every use – 5 minutes or less daily

Every morning pull out a clean towel or rag and hang it on the edge of your sink. Every time you use the sink whether you’re washing your hands or draining pasta, wipe it down. There won’t be time for food and water spots to dry on. A clean, sparkling sink makes all the difference in the world!

 

Wipe down stove, counters and dining table after each meal – 5 minutes or less daily

Spills and splatters are easier to wipe up when they’re wet. It should only take 30 seconds to a minute to quickly wipe down a surface that doesn’t have dried on drips or splatters. Remember that clean towel hanging on the edge of your sink? Use it all day to wipe down everything you use immediately.

 

Sweep the kitchen – 5 minutes or less daily
Grab your broom out of the garage and do a quick sweep every single day. Doesn’t matter if it’s in the morning or at midnight before bed, if you sweep everyday your floor will stay clean.

 

Speed clean – 5 minutes or less daily
Find that one thing that’s be bugging you and clean it as fast as you can. Spills in the fridge, dirty microwave, a few things that went bad and need to be thrown out. The key is to just do it 5 minutes a day. Don’t get sucked in to doing it any longer, 5 minutes a day will keep your kitchen manageable.

 

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Author: Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

5 No Heat Hairstyles

no heat haristyles

 

In case you haven’t heard, no heat hairstyles are becoming increasingly popular. It’s common knowledge that using any type of heat to style your hair is damaging. But you don’t have to show up with the same, undone, hair everyday just because you’re trying to avoid head. No heat hairstyles can look just as great as those that use heat tools.

5 No Heat Hairstyles

Braids
There are so many fun and different braids to choose from. French braid, fishtail braid, side braid, milkbraid, the possibilities are endless and there are thousands of tutorials out there.

Buns & Topknots
One of the quickest no heat hairstyles is the bun, also know as the topknot. These can be done to look professional and neat for work or messy and quirky for lunch with your girlfriends. Want to add a little extra personality? Add flowers or rhinestone encrusted bobby pins.

No Heat Curls
There are so many different ways to curl hair without heat. One favorite is to simply divide your hair into about four sections (depending on your hairs thickness and length) and twist it until it starts to curl onto itself. Secure it with pins or clips, sleep on it and in the morning ta-da: no heat curls!

Go Natural
There’s nothing wrong with wearing your hair natural. Whether you have gorgeous curls or sleek straight hair, going with your natural look can look just as good as any other style. Add a little product specifically made to tame or enhance our hairtype and you’re good to go.

Ponytails
When you think of a ponytail, you think of the typical slicked back, get this hair our of my face ponytail. However, just like braids there are several types of ponytails. Low, side ponytails or a ponytail combined with some no-heat curls can jazz up any boring hair styling routine.

Author: Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.

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6 Ways to Keep Your Dog Cool in the Summer

Keep your dog cool  in the summer

 

When summer rolls around it’s important to look at different ways you can keep your dog cool and comfortable. If you want to keep your dog cool this summer, I’ve gathered a few tips for you.

6 Ways to Keep Your Dog Cool in the Summer

 1. Frozen Treats & Food

Check your local petstore for logs of pet food. Most have these available and the logs can be cut into large chunks and frozen. Even better, put it in a kong toy and your dog will be entertained as well as cool.

2. Use a Kid Pool

Not all dogs love water, but it’s worth a try to see if yours does! Kiddie pools are cheap and can be filled up and kept in the shade for your dog to stand or lay in when he gets overheated. Kiddie pool too much of a hassle? Throw down a wet towel in the shade that your pup can rest on to cool off.

3. Keep Your Dog Inside

If at all possible, try to keep your dog inside on hot days. This is especially recommended during the hottest part of the day. Worried your dog will tear up the place while you’re gone? Most dogs can be kept in crates for a few hours while your gone keeping your future and your furry friend safe.

4. Time Your Walks & Exercise Right

Even though you might not feel like it, your dog still need exercise in the heat of the summer. Try to walk or run your pooch in the early morning or late afternoon when it’s cooled down a bit and overheating is less of a threat.

5. Grooming Can Make a Huge Difference

If you have a dog with long hair or a dense undercoat, a trip to the groomer can work wonders! Thick undercoats can be brushed out and long hair can be cut to increase air circulation and allow your dog to feel breezes to cool down.

6. Keep Your Dog Hydrated

Never underestimate the importance of having water available for your pet at all times!

 

Author: Aileen is a wife, entrepreneur and animal lover. She lives in a small California town, with her husband and a handful of pets, where she spends her days designing blogs and running her online boutique. You can find more at Life by Aileen where she talks about chasing dreams and her attempts at a simpler life.