Monthly Archives: September 2011

Picture them naked

There is an emotion attached to every behavior. Sometimes it's a potent emotion, sometimes not so much. The potency of an emotion doesn't change given a size difference in the body experiencing it. The size of that body might influence our emotions though. When I first stepped into the stall where Nibbles, my current foster dog, was housed along with another chihuahua named Mother, they [...]

By |2011-09-29T18:04:10-04:00September 29th, 2011|10 Comments

Junk food isn’t cheaper & punishment isn’t faster

There's an article in this weekend's New York Times, in the Week in Review section if you care to read it. It compares the costs of fast food vs home prepared meals. There were some who argued that the challenge of getting people to stop eating fast food was the cost. Being less expensive it made sense that people would choose it, except [...]

By |2011-09-26T13:19:57-04:00September 26th, 2011|25 Comments

Nabbing Nibbles

No recall is complete if you can't get your hands on the dog. I am continuing to try to get footage of Nibbles as we take the journey from fearful foster dog to playful pet dog (who needs a forever home BTW). I apologize that I haven't improved my wardrobe. When I interact with any dog I always think about how my behavior is going [...]

By |2011-09-25T01:51:36-04:00September 25th, 2011|15 Comments

How to get ‘less adoptable’ dogs adopted

When the term 'less adoptable' dogs is mentioned different images come to mind. Some might think of dogs with physical disabilities or old dogs. Others might think of dogs with behavioral challenges, dogs that don't get along with other dogs or certain members of the human race. When I think of less adoptable dogs I have to admit that almost any dog over 6 months [...]

By |2011-09-22T13:51:56-04:00September 22nd, 2011|22 Comments

Selling Dr. Doolittle

A question was posed on a dog training forum about how we, as dog trainers, could teach the general public to be more critically minded when it came to choosing trainers. My immediate response was tinged with disbelief, how do dog trainers teach people critical thinking skills? Why should that be what we are spending our efforts on? Face it, most people come to us [...]

By |2011-09-21T13:25:59-04:00September 21st, 2011|11 Comments

Hanging on to a sinking ship

Learning about the most effective and humane ways to work with fearful dogs has given me plenty of opportunities to ponder why people behave the way they do. I am not the first to wonder why it is so difficult for people to give up- or even less- question why they continue to believe the things they do when evidence mounts against them. I am [...]

By |2011-09-19T17:04:51-04:00September 19th, 2011|33 Comments

Sorry you’ve been disconnected

You would think that after cohabitating for 15,000 years, give or take a few thousand, that humans would be better at understanding their dogs. For as much as we claim to love them and marvel at their abilities, we sure don't know what they are talking about much of the time. At a conference I was attending a speaker on the uses of social media [...]

By |2011-09-13T22:39:12-04:00September 13th, 2011|8 Comments

Nibbles update

Nibbles the chi-x who was confiscated from a home breeder, along with approximately 25 other dogs, continues to feel more comfortable with me. Along with counter conditioning, desensitization and training, I am big fan of going for walks in the woods with dogs. They appear to love it, and once I determine that my relationship with a dog is positive and I am relevant to [...]

By |2011-09-09T15:00:49-04:00September 9th, 2011|6 Comments

Sunny’s story

Sunny was not the first fearful dog I'd interacted with but he was the first I decided to keep. The extent of his fearfulness propelled me on the path to discover the most effective and humane ways to work with fearful, shy and anxious dogs. FYI, Tammy and William Hanson were found 3 years after fleeing their home in AR. They were hoarding [...]

By |2011-09-07T22:34:08-04:00September 7th, 2011|1 Comment

Losing ground with fearful dogs

As a member of an online group which addresses fearful dogs I routinely see questions by others about what to do when their dog 'regresses'. Your dog is doing great and then suddenly, seemingly with no cause, they revert to an old behavior you have struggled with replacing. Look around and you'll see shattered dreams and dashed hopes scattered all around. Imagine watching a toddler [...]

By |2011-09-07T13:17:41-04:00September 7th, 2011|19 Comments