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Category Archives: Bow-Wow Behavior

Puppy Parent Tip Sheet

May 1, 2016

Puppy Parent Tip Sheet

There is no peak season for puppies, but my experience as a certified professional dog trainer and behavior consultant has shown summer to be one of the busier training times for young inquisitive canines. Any time is a good time for puppy training. Summer, though, has the added benefit of kids typically being out of school, which allows extra time for bonding and training with their pups. Kind of puts a brand new meaning to “dog days of summer,” doesn’t it? Training is fun for inquisitive canines and their humans. Dogs are social animals. They want to interact with humans. Keeping things pawsitive sets the stage for quick learning on both ends of the leash. Following are pointers to make the most out of your … Continue reading »


Training Your Dog Not to Dig Digging

October 12, 2015

Training Your Dog Not to Dig Digging

Ever spend an afternoon adding some color to your yard with bedding plants? And, then have your inquisitive canine dig them up before you could finish putting away the gardening tools? It, or something similar, probably has happened to all us canine loving folks. Maybe that fact doesn’t make you any less annoyed with your dog, but maybe the following tips will prevent any further dust ups in your garden.  Reward your inquisitive canine with a treat, praise, petting and/or a round of a favorite non-digging game whenever she/he is in the yard and leaving the dirt alone! Provide enrichment! especially when your dog is left alone, to help prevent boredom related behaviors. Using interactive food toys, scavenger hunts and … Continue reading »


Basic Dog Training – Step #1

September 14, 2015

Basic Dog Training – Step #1

Chances are good you are reading this because you have a new family member – an inquisitive canine. Congratulations and welcome to your new family member!  As a certified professional dog trainer and  behavior consultant, I take a pawsitive approach to dog training as an easy, simple, and fun way to enhance the everyday relationship between dogs and their guardians. Dog Training Step #1 is a super-simple activity. (Maybe you are already doing it.) Gaze into Each Other’s Eyes  Have fun teaching your dog to look you in the eyes. Reward your dog with high-value yummy treats, petting and praise whenever s/he looks into your eyes. Start out with a quick glance and then increase the duration to a few seconds. Prompt your dog … Continue reading »


Yellow Vest: Service Dog or Canine Fashion Statement?

August 3, 2015

Yellow Vest: Service Dog or Canine Fashion Statement?

No matter your politics, I think you’ll join me in saluting the United States Department of Justice for its clarification on service animals – FAQs on Service Animals. As a certified professional dog trainer and behavior consultant, I see SO much inconsistent information on the subject. “I have heard stories  from well-intentioned dog lovers  — and even witnessed — what I would consider law-stretching and boundary-crossing. Some of these actions risk endangering the public, and putting dogs at risk too. Plus, they could create situations where laws would be changed that negatively impacted those that really need services dogs.”  We encourage you to read through all of the FAQs on Service Animals. Written in clear, concise language, the FAQs on Service Animals starts with the basic questions “What is … Continue reading »


Training Your Dog Not to Jump the Fence

July 6, 2015

Training Your Dog Not to Jump the Fence

Dogs are beautifully athletic animals and a joy to watch. But, when their prowess compels them to jump the backyard fence, it can be quite nerve wracking and frightening for their humans. Where did my inquisitive canine go? We live on a busy street, will she return safely? Will she return at all?  As a certified professional dog trainer, I have worked with many dog guardians to find solutions for keeping their globetrotting inquisitive canines safe and secure. The first step to stop fence hopping is to create an inviting environment to motivate your dog to stay home. Here are some ways to accomplish this: While a dog is learning to stay in the yard, it should always be supervised when left outside. Leaving … Continue reading »


Water Safety Training Tips for Your Dog

June 15, 2015

Water Safety Training Tips for Your Dog

The dog days of summer are right around the corner. Is your inquisitive canine ready for beating the heat? By that, I mean is your dog (and you!) water safety ready? As a professional dog trainer, I often meet people who assume all dogs possess an innate ability to swim. Not true! Particularly the brachycephalic (short-snout) breed. To ensure the best-est wettest possible summer ever, here are some water safety tips and reminders. Make sure your dog knows how to swim. If you’re not sure, accompany it into a pool, lake, or ocean, and you’ll know soon enough. Don’t force the dog into the water. Even if your dog is used to swimming in one location or type of water, it’s still … Continue reading »


Understanding an Older Dog’s Change in Behavior

June 1, 2015

Understanding an Older Dog’s Change in Behavior

Dear Inquisitive Canine, My dog is is 12 years old and we’ve been best friends since she was a puppy. In the last six months or so, Violet has been acting very strange. She used to love snuggling together while watching a DVD, but now she growls at me if I pet her. We used to love ruff-housing and wrestling. Recently, Violet bit me quite hard and scared me. Also, it seems she doesn’t listen to me any longer. Doesn’t come when called; won’t follow commands. It’s not only the bites that have hurt me. My feelings are very hurt. I’m losing my best friend and I don’t know what to do. -Carole, aka, Violet’s Bestie Dear Carole, Thank you … Continue reading »


Training your dog to make better choices at a Memorial Day BBQ

May 22, 2015

Training your dog to make better choices at a Memorial Day BBQ

Memorial Day is right around the corner, and to a lot of inquisitive canines that means one thing – BBQs! Meat morsels and drippings … wonderful smells … gathering around the open fire and cooking just like the domestic dogs’ prehistoric ancestors did. As a certified professional dog trainer and  behavior consultant , I think this is the perfect time to help set the stage for keeping inquisitive canines happy and safe while either attending or co-hosting a BBQ or other summer event. Reward  for ignoring “forbidden items,” especially the BBQ! Say your dog walks by the BBQ and decides to stay away. Whether you’ve asked them to or not, they should be thanked. Say “thank you” with anything they find motivating, such as … Continue reading »


When Worlds Collide – Leashed and Unleashed Dogs

May 4, 2015

When Worlds Collide – Leashed and Unleashed Dogs

Dear Inquisitive Canine, I always walk my dog on her leash. On most days, while Daisy and I are walking in the neighborhood, at least one unleashed dog confronts us. This bothers Daisy so much she lunges and barks like crazy at the unleashed dog. I’ve worked a bit, so now Daisy is a bit more friendly, but still … Please help! Daisy’s Mom Dear Daisy’s Mom, Thank you for writing in! First, let us tell you that Daisy’s response to unleashed dogs is not unusual at all. We appreciate questions such as these, since there are many in your shoes. The following quick tips can help with enjoying your leash-walks. Interrupt and redirect! An easy and fun game you … Continue reading »


A Dog Training Pop Quiz: Is Your “Home Alone” Dog Bored or Stressed?

April 27, 2015

A Dog Training Pop Quiz: Is Your “Home Alone” Dog Bored or Stressed?

Spring is in the air! Soon the dog days of summer will be here. What do the warmer weather and change of seasons mean for your inquisitive canine? Will he or she be spending more time alone? Will they have to entertain themselves? If there’s a sudden shift to routine and  your dog isn’t used to solitude, and doesn’t like it, there may be some behavioral issues coming down the pike. Poncho and I developed this Home Alone quiz to help determine if your dog might be bored, be on the brink of isolation distress (a.k.a: separation anxiety), or just hunky dory with some new found solitude. Q: Going through your ritual to leave for work and/or school, your dog: … Continue reading »