Behavior

Recognizing the Signs of a Friendly Dog

How do you know if a dog is safe to pet? Parents try very hard to teach their kids to always ask before they pet a strange dog.  It’s a great habit to teach.  However sometimes the dog owner themselves is not aware of the signs their dog is giving off. Be respectful of dogs and their space, not all dogs like strangers in their space.  In this short video you will see a highly social puppy run up and greet some guests. The base of her tail never rises above her spin.  Look at the … [Read more...]

Why Dogs Scratch Their Feet

Most people have seen their dog go to the bathroom and afterwards scratch their feet on the ground.  I have heard all kinds of explanations, but the reality is your dog is just scent marking the space.  Dogs have scent pads on their paw pads and scratching their feed on the ground leaves their personal signature. … [Read more...]

Quick Tip: Sudden Changes in Behavior

  If you experience a sudden change of behavior in your dog, book an appointment with your vet.  Very often medical issues spark these sudden changes.  You can see increased aggression, anxiety or other undesirable behaviors.  Before you seek out a training solution, you want a full physical exam performed by your vet including a full blood panel.  Low Thyroid levels are common and can cause a seemingly unexplained escalation in aggression.     … [Read more...]

From a Dog’s Prospective

Have you ever wondered how a dog sees life happen?  In this video, you will get a glimpse into Wick's life.   … [Read more...]

Earning Privileges

    I am yet to hear of somebody who thinks that giving their 7 year old the keys to the car is a good idea because the child thinks it should be allowed to drive.  The reason we deny kids privileges is because they are not mature enough to handle them and potentially put themselves and others at risk by having those privileges.  However I constantly see people giving their dogs privileges they are not ready for.  Common Scenarios: New Dogs:  Do not leave dogs together … [Read more...]

Q & A: Growling

I recently moved in with my mother and my one-dog growls at her every time she walks into my area of the house.  What should I do? Your dog may be battling to adjust to the new living situation and sees your mom as a potential “threat” to your family, or at least your dog’s idea of your family.  You want to help your dog understand that your mom is a part of the family and not a threat. I recommend your mom do following: Feed your dog to encourage a high value association to … [Read more...]

Independent Dogs

  Dogs are like people; they come in all colors, shapes, sizes and personalities.  In my years of training, I have noticed people tend to be "attracted" to certain personality types in a dog.  I personally believe there is some kind of "reaction" that takes place without a person realizing it when they meet a potential dog.  I have seen people consistently select the same personality type in their dogs without even realizing it or knowing what criteria they are … [Read more...]

Rainy Days

Heavy rains and cold weather is my favorite weather.  However it does pose a challenge with dogs.  Apart from the housebreaking challenges it brings, dogs get bored and often land themselves in some trouble.  A bored dog will inevitably get into something you don’t want them doing or display nuisance behaviors like chewing, barking and destructive behavior. Here are a few great ideas for those rainy indoor days to keep your pups mind mentally engaged: Find It Teaching Fetch, … [Read more...]

Should I get a Second Dog?

    This is a common question.  And as you guested there is no clear-cut answer.  When you have an excitable, exuberant dog I suggest making sure that you have the first one trained before you introduce a second one.  Chaos begets Chaos.  So many people hope that the dogs will learn each other’s good habits, however they usually don’t.  So often they learn the bad habits.  Having two untrained dogs is a big challenge; they feed off each other’s excitement.  … [Read more...]

Cats and Dogs: Making the Introduction

Dogs and Cats are the most common household pets, but their coexistence is not always smooth sailing. The ideal introduction would be when the dog is a puppy, however is not always possible.  The following steps can help a smoother transition.  If your dog is a cat killer, it is best that you don't consider bringing a cat into your home.  However there are many dogs out there who need to learn social etiquette towards cats.  Click on this link to help assess your dogs intention towards your … [Read more...]