September Charity Spotlight on Canine Assistants

Training Great Dogs to Help Special People The volunteers at Canine Assistants have been working since 1991 to improve the lives of children and adults with physical disabilities, seizure conditions, or other special needs. Founded by Jennifer Arnold, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis as a teenager, this non-profit organization trains and provides service dogs, seizure response dogs, and companion dogs to eligible applicants living in the Atlanta area. Because Jennifer fully understands the challenges of living with a life-changing diagnosis, she is inspired to provide others with the gift of unconditional love and acceptance offered by specially trained service dogs. … Continue reading

What to Do When Your Dog Won’t Listen

What to Do When Your Dog Won't Listen

Let’s face it, we’ve all been there. That dog that was so well trained has now stopped listening, doesn’t come when called and basically does what he wants. It can happen for a lot of reasons: Not practicing Not enough positive reinforcement Changes to your daily routine Not asking enough of your dog I have a multi-dog household, so sometimes if practice or training time is limited on my part, they start to slip and the pack can take over in no time. Sometimes you need to just hit the reset button and re-start your training (and your mindset!). Our … Continue reading

The World Of Working Dogs

The World Of Working Dogs

My husband suggested this topic to me as he said he didn’t realize how many sorts of working dogs there were. So welcome to the world of Working Dogs!   My first true connection to working dogs was by meeting Rita Martinez back in 2002 as she was a SF/SPCA Academy for Dog Trainers presenter. Her work at the time was with Search and Rescue doing cadaver work. If you are interested in learning more check out her work. Forensic Evidence Canines: Status, Training and Utilization and Cadaver Scent Project. Rita has since transitioned to Diabetic Alert, Medical Alert, Seizure Alert, Hearing, Assistance … Continue reading

Preparing Your Dog For Back-to-School Time

Preparing Your Dog For Back-to-School Time

August has just arrived, and while many folks are still enjoying the summer time soaking up the sun and splashing in the water, the thought of school is not that far off. Some families are already preparing!   While items such as bookbags, notebooks, and pencils are being added to shopping lists, the transition from summer sun to school-time fun could actually be a stressful one for pets. Here are a few of my FiveSibes™ “golden rules” to help ease the change for our furry best friends and their human pals: Practice Makes Perfect (Sense) Before the first day of … Continue reading

Is Your Dog Stubborn or Just Trying to Tell You Something?

Is Your Dog Stubborn or Just Trying to Tell You Something?

There are a few variations in the definition of stubborn but this is the most concise “difficult to move, remove, or cure.”   When a client tells me their dog is “stubborn”, it always leads me into asking MANY more questions. I will ask about the situations, I will ask about past experiences, I will ask them how they respond to the “stubborn” behavior and I will ask about their dog’s body language. When I ask these questions, I want as much detail as possible. Because dogs do not use verbal language (the language that most humans understand), I really … Continue reading

Simple Tips for Teaching Your Dog to Come When Called!

Simple Tips for Teaching Your Dog to Come When Called!

As a trainer, I often get calls from people who want to know how to teach their dog to reliably come when called. To teach the dog to come when called (or improve a less than stellar recall in a dog), start with some basic exercises and avoid doing things that take away from the training. Initially, train in a safe, fenced, distraction-free area. Make a note of what your dog finds rewarding. It might be high value treats like dehydrated meat, or toys or a game of tug. Build a strong relationship with the dog by using rewards in … Continue reading

The Evolution of Dog Training

The Evolution of Dog Training

Over the years dog training has evolved just like almost everything else in the world! Although evolution and change can be scary, it is an important part of our lives.   As humans, we are constantly striving for “something better” or to learn more about things. Because we have a desire for “something better,” we have eliminated deadly diseases, we have mini computers in our pockets, we can travel around the world and we live much longer. These changes did not come easy and many people feared the changes. Change can be scary and if we learn that we have … Continue reading

Who’s Training Whom? Dog Training Tips…

Who's Training Whom? Dog Training Tips...

Did you know that if you are not actively-(being present) in training (teaching) your dog, chances are they are training you? The reason Dog Trainers exist is because people and dogs have difficulty living together. We include dogs into our families to enjoy them and have a bond, however, there are sometimes cultural clashes where there is misunderstanding, head-butting, frustration or worse. Fix my dog. Can you get him to stop…x? I want my dog to behave. My dog doesn’t listen to me. My dog only listens to my husband. The reason dogs are abused, neglected, relinquished, abandoned, or tortured, … Continue reading

5 Ways for Dog Lovers to Work in an Animal Related Field

Who doesn’t love dogs? Their wagging tails, wet noses, and loving personalities make them a popular companion in the animal world. If you love dogs, and other animals, there is a job waiting for you in the world of animal related careers. Whether you’re interested in creating things for them, working with them, helping them, studying them, or saving them, there is a job that will allow you to do that. Not only is the pet industry booming, but there’s also a great need for animal lovers in the other animal mediums to keep them safe and cared for. If … Continue reading

My Dog Won’t Stop Barking at Other Dogs! What Do I Do?

My Dog Won’t Stop Barking at Other Dogs! What Do I Do?

Some people will say, “Dogs bark, what can you do?” It may surprise you to know that I agree with this statement. To a degree. I like my dogs to let me know when someone, or something is approaching my house. I do not like my dogs to bark incessantly, or lunge at other dogs. I work on this behavior in a couple of ways. In my home, when my dogs run to the window or door barking, I get up, I see what has piqued their interest, and I let them know, it’s okay. Sometimes, I thank them. Then … Continue reading