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Karlo & Taj dance

Dancing with the Stars Rhodesian Ridgeback Style

Socialization for your pup or dog is key to raising a healthy, stable animal. Socialization is exposure to SIGHTS, SOUNDS, SCENTS AND SURFACES paired with positive experience. Socialization is to people of all ages, other dogs (both on and the especially raucous off leash type of socializing), other animals and different places at different times of the day and throughout the year. Whether your plans for your dog include companionship, competition,  assistance or other types of work dog -- or all of the above and then some -- it is critically important to find time, make the effort and commit

Animal Shelter Team Gathered for a Meeting About Postivie Dog Training

Shelter Enrichment - Not Just For Dogs

Yesterday was a great day, a day when I felt like I had gotten in the game and put action behind my convictions. I’m passionate about keeping dogs in living rooms and out of shelters. I’m passionate about teaching people that behavioral issues can be solved humanely and positively. I’m passionate about spreading the word of positive training techniques far and wide. But passion is pointless when kept to yourself, and I honestly believe that actions speak louder than words.

When asked to put on a workshop about dog training for staff and volunteers at a local no-kill shelter, I wasn’t quite

A boy and his dog.

Fatal Dog Attacks And BSL

There has been a fatal dog attack on a young girl in the UK this week. My heart goes out to the friends and family of Jade Anderson. My heart breaks for their loss. There are no words of comfort I can offer to make things better in this time of tragedy. However, there is much to say regarding the incident. This incident was not unavoidable. Let’s hope that as the media swarms on the sensationalistic aspect of this sort of sad news and as the horror of such an attack leads people to become reactionary and call for blanket bans and breed specific legislation, that common sense and education...

Puppy Classes And Canine Parvovirus

I have just read a paper in the March/April issue of the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association describing a study that concluded, puppies vaccinated at least once prior to starting puppy classes at less than 16 weeks of age were at no more risk of being diagnosed with Canine Parvovirus infection than vaccinated puppies that did not attend classes.

The study comprised two parts:

1. A total of 21 veterinary clinics were selected from both low- and high-income zones in four cities with different seasonal patterns (Atlanta GA, Chicago IL, Phoenix AZ and Seattle WA). Data were...

Why are You Teaching Your Dog That?


So, there are some words, phrases and cues that I choose not to use with dogs.  One of those is, “Look at me.”  I don’t say it and I don’t teach it.  Of course there’s nothing wrong with it, but I find it redundant and unnecessary in my training, so I don’t use it.

If I want to get someone’s attention, I generally say their name.  The expectation is that if I say someone’s name, they will respond by looking at me and at that point I can say whatever it is I need to say.  If I say someone’s name and they don’t respond, I can assume they either didn’t hear me or they are ignoring...

Jack Russell Terriers Sitting

He Won't Sit Still for a Second: Quantifying Success in Dog Training

Years ago after a puppy class, a frustrated owner (of a Jack Russell Terrier) complained that her puppy wouldn’t sit still for a second. I got out my stopwatch and checked. She was quite correct; the puppy only sat for 0.2 of a second. I wrote the number on a sheet of paper and stuck it on the wall. On the fourth trial though, the JRT proved her wrong and sat for 1.2 seconds. I wrote the dog’s new personal best on the sheet of paper. Baby steps? Yes. But because we objectively quantified the dog’s performance, we realized that these baby steps reflected a 600% improvement. I explained to...

If I Should Die Before I Wake

Tell me about your plan for your dogs should something happen to you.  Not what you think or hope will happen, but your actual plan.  Who will take them?  Will that person keep them or be charged with the responsibility of rehoming them?  Do you have a dog that could not be rehomed and might have to be euthanized instead?  Have you thought about these things?

I recently and quite suddenly lost a friend.  She was only 43 years old and by all appearances perfectly healthy.  She died of a pulmonary embolism.  She had two dogs, one of them is blind.  There is no way that she or anyone else

I'm Mean to Dogs

I was working with a dog at the dog park the other day. We were near the dog park, but not inside the play area.  We walked around practicing loose leash walking, eye contact, the “let’s go” cue, sits and stays.  While working close to the dog park fence, a woman asked me if the dog was friendly with other dogs.  I explained that he was and that he routinely went to dog daycare and to dog parks.  She then asked if he was going to come in to play when he was done working.  I told her that he wasn’t.

“Oh, you’re so mean!” she told me.  I laughed and went along my way, thinking about all

Puppy biting or mouthing.

Puppy Class And Biting, Mouthing Puppies

What is the number one reason for puppy class? To continue to work on puppies’ acquired bite inhibition. Put differently, to teach people how to give appropriate feedback to their mouthy young pup with needle-sharp teeth.

 

It’s generally the very first question we get at our SIRIUS Puppy & Dog Training School, “How do I stop my puppy from biting?”  Even though puppies are pretty tiny and have weak jaws, there pointy little teeth really pack a punch. It is no wonder people don’t want their pups to bite them, but our job at puppy school is to convince people not to punish out

Predicting Dangerous Human Behavior

The trouble with people claiming to be able to “predict” the “dangerousness” of a dog based on their breed or “type” is this, they have not put forth any proof they themselves know anything about dog behavior and or human behavior as it relates to the potential dangerousness of dogs, so they cannot make the claim. 

Even if one did have great insights to dog behavior or the breed or mix of the dog, they cannot make the clam based solely on the dog’s type, the major factor in a dog’s “dangerousness” are the humans and their behavior, period. As a collective community, people on both...

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