Ready, set, rescue!

Recently I ruffled some feathers on an online forum. It was not my intention and I usually try to stay out of most of the networking site forums because they are often too upsetting, but something moved me and I posted a comment. The original posting was about a 15 year old girl who had started a rescue group. It was an upbeat, 'isn't this [...]

By |2011-05-25T02:06:17-04:00May 25th, 2011|43 Comments

The path of the heart

Back when I was in university I attended a class on Carlos Castaneda's books, The Teachings of Don Juan series. Ah, those were the days. For the uninitiated, the books, written as a recounting of Carlos' experience with the shaman Don Juan, are full of magical experiences and lessons for living what some might call, an enlightened life. They were, and still are by many, [...]

By |2011-05-18T12:55:23-04:00May 18th, 2011|12 Comments

Nothing wrong with a duck

I have found myself being taken to task, chastised and berated for putting information on my website that says that not all dogs can completely become desensitized and counter conditioned to the things that scare them. Some who label themselves trainers, and others who will not identify themselves at all, have claimed that this is a disservice to people with fearful dogs, that it [...]

By |2011-05-14T14:49:16-04:00May 14th, 2011|26 Comments

We’re not out of the dark yet

I have been struggling this week with a website a friend shared with me. On the site a 'trainer', who seems to boast no qualification other than maybe owning the boxed set of TV's The Dog Whisperer DVDs, proudly describes and documents with chilling videos, how a 'dominant' dog was put in his place. The dog, a breed which is known for its wariness and [...]

By |2011-05-12T17:20:52-04:00May 12th, 2011|31 Comments

The deep end

It's hard not to do, and invariably we do it. We are working with our dog and getting good responses and rather than quit while we're ahead we push, one more time. When trying to work on a behavior modification protocol with a fearful dog (whether they are prone to fleeing or fighting), we give them another opportunity to behave inappropriately, i.e., to fail. Even [...]

By |2011-05-12T12:07:47-04:00May 12th, 2011|2 Comments

The 10 mile dog

Before there was the GPS unit there was the map and compass. It was imperative that anyone traveling into the backcountry, especially going off marked trails, understood how to use them. Despite common knowledge, compasses do not always point north, in fact they never do. They point to magnetic north which is different from 'true north'. Maps indicate which way is 'true north'. In order [...]

By |2011-05-07T12:31:18-04:00May 7th, 2011|5 Comments

It’s not just the walk

I don't mean to downplay the importance of providing a dog with exercise, but the reason for getting dogs out for a good leg stretch goes beyond the attempt to tire them out. The frequently heard statement that a 'tired dog is a good dog', makes me cringe. A good dog is a good dog whether they are exhausted or not. Anyone who has walked [...]

By |2011-05-04T13:04:47-04:00May 4th, 2011|21 Comments

Critical incident stress information

For over 25 years I worked setting up and leading outdoor and cultural adventures for students and women's groups. Since I became obsessed with thinking about helping dogs with fear based behavior challenges, I've steadily begun to do less traveling. That and along with the fact that spring is in the air, I decided to empty out a filing cabinet of old paperwork. [...]

By |2011-05-02T12:27:33-04:00May 2nd, 2011|8 Comments
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