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February 19, 2019

5 things I'd never do:

1) I'd never utilize unfamiliar dogs and unknowledgeable humans in a dog park to "fix" social behavior.

  • Dog parks are often filled with filthy water puddles, contaminated feces, and adrenalized dogs. There are just too many unknown factors for my liking. If I utilize a dog park, I remain outside the fence and train from a specific...

January 2, 2019

Here are 4 random pieces of advice, currently on my mind, in no specific order:

1) If your dog needs to remain at a veterinarian's office the night following surgery, make sure that there is overnight supervision (24-hour employee coverage). If there isn't, use a different vet for that surgery.

2) Don't be intimidated to get second opinions on vet care an...

December 21, 2018

Check out the ingredient list on your dog's kibble bag... 

Read the first 5 ingredients.

The worst dog foods list wheat, corn, and soy products (GMOs!), as well as meat-by-products (the waste after removing muscle meat!) within the first 5 ingredients. 

If the kibble includes these products, it will probably also include artificial colors, artificial fla...

December 4, 2018

Dog training involves constant evaluation of the evidence.


ev·i·dence
noun

  1. the available body of facts or information indicating whether [your dog training is progressing well or not] 😎

  • Synonyms: proof, confirmation, verification, substantiation, affirmation

In a certain environment... in a certain circumstance... what just happened?

Without a...

October 26, 2018

Are you prepared? Is your wife prepared? Is your husband prepared? Is anyone-involved-in-supervising-the-dog prepared?

"Success is where preparation and opportunity meet."
~ Bobby Unser

Lack of preparation is 1 fault in the training program. After 2 or 3 faults, a tried-and-true training program is no longer effective. It becomes "some other training prog...

October 24, 2018

Reactivity is a reactive or "aggressive" response to stimuli in the environment. Reactivity typically involves barking, lunging, and/or growling behavior. Dogs may display this behavior from inside the house, while on car rides, from behind a fence, and while walking on a leash. 

The most difficult dogs will have a: 

  • low threshold (triggered by the...

October 22, 2018

If you'd like to learn calculus, we can't start with calculus. We've first got to master addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, algebra, geometry...

The same concept holds true for dog training.

If you'd like your dog to learn how to walk past another dog, on a loose leash, showing no signs of reactivity, then we can't start with loose leash wal...

October 6, 2018

I often hear dog owners say "I know that this is all my fault". And I always reply, "well, maybe not, don't be so hard on yourself". 

Behavior is always a combination of genetics and environment. You (or other humans, dogs, events) may be responsible for the environmental portion of influence in a dog's behaviors. However, there are many people who do ever...

July 25, 2018

Successfully living with a dog requires a "big picture" approach... We need to address all aspects of wellness, not just obvious behaviors.

Major factors influencing behavior:

  1. Nutrition

  2. Medical

  3. Environment


✅ Nutrition

  • What you eat definitely affects how you feel. The same applies for dogs.

  • If your dog struggles digestively, consider...

February 1, 2018

Django, our [working line] German Shepherd is almost 8 months old.

He has reaffirmed the following lessons, and I thought I'd share while they are fresh in my mind:

1) Raising a puppy is a lot of work. You'll always forget how much work it is, even if you did it years ago.

2) Supervise or contain. Utilize a crate when you can't supervise. If a puppy goes...

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