What Makes Us Irresistible To Dogs?

Connecting with my Golden Retriever.

You’ve probably heard the advice from trainers. If you want your dog to pay attention to you, you have to be the most interesting person ever. But what exactly does that mean? Is it more than just carrying yummy treats? And what about dogs who aren’t food motivated? What can we do to make ourselves […]

Why Adopting A Reactive Dog Was The Best Thing I Ever Did

Honey the golden retriever nuzzles a stuffed toy.

Sure, I like a cute dog video as much as anyone. I enjoy following the agility competitions of doggy athletes. And who doesn’t love a funny dog poop story? But many of my favorite dog blogs share the joys and trials of living with reactive dogs. Why? Where’s the fun in reading about the terror, humiliation, […]

The Puppy Is Coming – Switching Gears

Honey the golden retriever puppy goes to work.

It’s happening. And I’ve got to get ready. The puppy is coming. Returning our latest foster dog, Blanche, to the SPCA and picking up a new puppy will be like turning that pleasant float downstream into a ride through raging rapids. Everything in the house looks different when you see it through the eyes of […]

Learning From Improv: Lessons For Your Dog And You

Honey the golden retriever sits with her tongue hanging out.

Have you ever watched a comedy improv performance? One person starts a riff, the second performer carries it on, and soon the situation takes on a life of its own. How do they think of these things? And how do they keep it going with other people? Are they mind readers? No, not mind readers. But improv […]

What Lessons Can We Learn From Our Dog’s Problem Behaviors?

Honey the golden retriever plays with her stuffed lamb.

If your dog runs away from home, cries when you leave the house, or barks like a mad creature every time a stranger comes to the door, you look for a management tool or training method. Right? I’m not going to argue you out of that. After all, roaming the streets is dangerous. No dog […]

The ONLY Way To Break Through Fear Is…

Golden Retriever getting treats in bike cart

I’m getting a Master’s Degree in fear. First, we worked with a trainer to decrease Honey’s fear of the bike cart. Then we fostered the extremely fearful Cherie. And now, I’m months away from terrifyingly transforming my life by setting out for a life at sea. I haven’t written my thesis yet. But I’ve learned a lot. […]

Who Copes Better With Change? Us Or The Dog?

Honey the golden retriever tires to understand what I'm explaining to her.

We’ve made a decision. And I’m scared sh*tless. So is my husband. Honey? Not so much. She’s sleeping at my feet dreaming of peanut butter and tug toys. What’s the difference? We know what’s coming and how uncertain our life plans are. Honey lives in the moment. So who copes better with change? Us or the […]

Do We Expect Too Much From Our Dogs?

Honey the Golden Retriever sits in MIke's lap at the side of the creek.

What was he thinking? Did my husband really expect me to work at home all day with chocolate covered pretzels sitting right on the counter? And that he could have one left when he got home from work? Just how much impulse control does he expect me to have? I guess as much as we […]

10 Tips For Enjoying The Dog Park

10 Tips To Help You Enjoy the Dog Park

Dog parks are the most schizophrenic issue for dog lovers. Communities crow about their great dog-friendly amenities. And trainers warning you of violent gladiatorial contests not seen since the death of the Roman empire. Who’s right? It depends on the park. It depends on the time. And it depends on the dog. But if your […]

Why Do People Resist Hiring Dog Trainers?

Honey the golden retriever loves to tug.

Obviously he loved his dog. But the dog’s behavior had changed recently and he didn’t know why. The vet said there was no medical reason for the change. My new friend described the history of his dog’s behavior and interactions with others in the family. And then he asked me, “What do you think I should do?” […]

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