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Letter From The Dog

Letter From The Dog

This letter is a great read, by  Victoria Stilwell

Since when does “just a minute” only apply to humans? We dogs say it too, except when we do, you humans get angry. You let us off the rope thing to go run around and play and then you ask us to come back at the most inconvenient of times, just when we are having the best fun – playing with other dogs or chasing small fluffies. When we don’t respond, you get mad and tell us how bad we are, but apparently you don’t understand that when we hear our name, look back at you and then continue with our game, we’re also saying “just a minute”. By the way…..how long is a minute?

Source: Letter From The Dog

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2017 in About

 

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Dog Training Q & A to some frequently asked questions & queries

Dog Training Q & A to some frequently asked questions & queries

I thought I would do a Q & A page to answer some commonly asked questions and queries I frequently receive. This page will be updated as more Q & A are added.

Q 1.  Do you offer a performance guarantee?

Sorry no, I do not. When it comes to dog training, there are too many variables, I have no control of, to offer any kind of guarantee. Dog training is all about me teaching you how to handle/communicate and train your dog. Your dog may listen to me but your dog isn’t my dog, you have to do the work.  I can only advise, guide & show, I can’t make you listen and take note of my advice or suggestions. Neither can I make you work and spend time with your dog as required, on a daily basis.

Although, I can ask you to let me know, if something I have shown you, isn’t working for you, I can’t rely on you telling me. Dog training is about commitment,  there are no quick fixes when it comes to training your dog.

Trades people such as plumbers, mechanics etc, may guarantee their work and guarantee’s apply on most consumer  goods, eg cars, TV’s, fridge/freezers and the like. As with any written guarantee, you need to read the fine print, re conditions that can make guarantee null & void.

Some dog trainers may offer a guarantee, it maybe just a gimmick, to increase their client base, you need to read the small print.

Q 2. Are you a dog whisperer?

Dog whisperer is a phrase,  which has been used quite frequently since Robert Redford movie the “Horse Whisperer” was released in 1998. it was based on the 1995 novel “The Horse Whisperer” by Nicholas Evans.

In fact, All animals speak to us, if we as humans, choose to watch, listen and learn. So, no, I am not a dog whisperer but like many other people I can read and understand dogs and what they are trying to tell us.

Many dog trainers/behaviourists, over the years have used the phrase “dog whisperer”, as a good marketing tool, to increase their client base and revenue.

Q 3. Do you only hold “group dog training classes” on a Sunday?

Yes I do, I find for most people, the time and day is more convenient.

Q 4. When is your next Canine Parkour Class (urban agility)?

I am sorry but due to the lack of interest, I no longer hold Canine Parkour classes. I do however include an introduction to canine parkour, in my group classes and private training packages. I also offer a one hour private parkour training session, to anyone who is interested.

Q 5. Hi, just wondering when your next Pet Support Group meeting is?

Again, unfortunately due to the lack of interest, I know longer offer this free service.

Q 6. Do you train when its raining?

Yes I do, I train in all weather, unless it is extreme, or there is a possibility of someone getting injured e.g. Its a very windy day and there’s bark or branches breaking off trees and being tossed around, by the wind.  They have the potential to harm. So I will cancel, I usually contact people via phone or text. So, if the weather is a bit crappy, don’t assume I am going to cancel.  If you don’t hear from me, its still on.

 Q 7. Why do your classes cost more than the dog training clubs?

Volunteer club members, run the classes and they only charge a nominal amount to cover their basic costs. That is why their courses run for longer and cost less. Unlike myself and many other trainers, we have to cover our costs and live.

 

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2017 in About

 

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Exercise & Dog Reactivity

Exercise & Dog Reactivity

Great article, I am a big believer in enrichment games and any other forms of activities that can help, keep your dog, calm, focused and listening to you.

Where's Your Sit?

The ISCP has released new research from graduate Linda Cooper on the impact of exercise on reactive dogs (view study here). The study is fairly interesting in that it recommends reducing walks and arousal increasing activities such as fetch.

The dogs in the study were sent on a “doggie” vacation where exercise was significantly reduced. The owners of the dogs were nervous of this at first given that many of the dogs that participated were also described as hyper dogs that required great amounts of exercise.

What was found instead was that with reduced physical exercise (off leash running, long walks, playtime with other dogs, ball and disc play, etc.) and increased soothing touch and mental games the dogs improved significantly in only 6 days! The study goes on to cite work that includes giving dogs a drastic change for a month to see truly improved results in…

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Posted by on February 16, 2017 in About

 

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Living with DINOS is now an ONLINE Class!

I personally know quite a few people, who would benefit from this class. So if you are living with a Dinos, maybe this class is for you.

notes from a dog walker

Holy moly, it’s been so long since my last post! Before I share the big news about the new DINOS online class, here’s the world’s fastest update/excuse, for anyone who cares:

Birdie is really old and has kidney disease now, so I spend all day cleaning up pee pads, but in between mopping, I squeezed in a few more semesters of graduate school, taught a few more compassion fatigue classes, went on a couple hundred walks with naughty dogs, and ate so much vegan ice cream (Thanks Ben. Thanks Jerry.), that I have to do yoga every morning, just so I can still touch my toes. More on that in a later post. 

But guess what else I did? I built an online class for people who live with DINOS!!

It took me 34 years to finish it (I started developing the idea during nap time in pre-school), but it’s…

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Posted by on January 28, 2017 in About

 

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Are you prepared for: Kids, Dogs and the Holidays? 77% of dog bites are caused by the family dog or a friends dog.

Are you prepared for: Kids, Dogs and the Holidays? 77% of dog bites are caused by the family dog or a friends dog.

Any gatherings can be a cause for concern when dogs and kids are involved, it doesn’t just have to be around the holidays. 77% of dog bites are caused by the family dog or a friends dog. Statements such as “my dog wouldn’t hurt anyone” or “my dog is good around kids” really need to be taken with a grain of salt.

All dogs have the potential to harm, given the right situation and humans are no different, if backed into a corner. We can become verbal or physical, if necessary.  Dogs on the other hand, use body language to communicate their stress, distress, discomfort or they may even growl.

Unfortunately, how many listen to what the dog is trying to say, how many dogs get a one way trip to the vets every year because nobody was watching or listening. All too often people don’t see the potential dangers because they feel too secure and comfortable around dogs and are often oblivious to the potential dangers associated with inappropriate behaviour and not being aware.

Supervision is the key, you have to be watching 100% of the time.  Unfortunately the word supervision for many these days, means casting a casual glance around, while doing something else such as:

Having a family gatherings or party, you can’t be watching both your dog and what is going on around you all the time, your dog needs a safe place to go where it won’t be bothered. Dogs can become very stressed and people can do stupid things.

Talking and Texting on the phone,

Chatting or having coffee, while your dog is left alone with kids or other adults, yes I said other adults, they also need to be know how to act and behave, when in the company of dogs.

Letting your dog off leash and not watching where its going or what its doing.

The list is endless, non of the above is 100% supervision.

Many dog bites/dog attacks can be avoided,  if people were more aware. Below is a link to a  great info graphic designed and published by Family Paws Parent Education on the 5 types of supervision.   and below is another very good info graphic from Doggone Safe on dog bite prevention tips for the holidays. Of course these tips can be applied anytime of the year.

holiday bite prevention tips

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on December 19, 2015 in About

 

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Should dog/puppy training classes cover more than just the basic commands & behaviours?

Should dog/puppy training classes cover more than just the basic commands & behaviours?

Training classes in many forms are run all over the country, should dog/puppy training classes cover more than just the basic commands & behaviours? I know some do,  I personally think all should, we, not just here in New Zealand but worldwide are seeing an increase in dog bites/attacks as well as certain behaviours. When an incident of an attack is reported by the media, one thing that is always mentioned is, the call for more education.

Although there are plenty of dog safety education programs and information out there for the public and dog owners alike, how much of that information is actually sort out by the general public or dog owners.

Unfortunately, in today’s society many people are too complacent when it comes to dogs, in other words, they feel too secure and comfortable in the company of dogs and are unaware or oblivious to the potential dangers. After all, dogs are faster than humans, they have teeth that can do a lot of damage, and in many cases are stronger. So forget for a minute I am talking about dogs, If I were talking about tigers, would people be so complacent?

In order to effect a change in people’s thinking, yes education is the key, it’s no harder than it was, to educate people to wear seat belts while in a vehicle or teaching people, to look both ways before crossing the road.

As a dog trainer/behaviorist ( we are educators) how many include information in the way of FAQ sheets as well as talking/showing, dog owners, you teach, the do’s and don’ts of dog safety (in other words how to act and behave when in the company of dogs). As well as giving them the lowdown on the dog control act.

So your clients have the tools to protect their dog and educate others, how to act and behave when in the company of their dog or anyone’s for that matter. 77% of dog bites are caused by the family dog or a friends dog.

We as dog trainers/behaviorist have the opportunity to make a difference and become part of the solution and turn the tide.

Other articles you may find of interest: 5 easy ways to get bitten by a dog  Dog owners its ok to say no!  Greeting People may make your dog scared or uncomfortable  Socialising your dog, its all about your dog, its not what you think, your dog needs or should be able to handle  How well do you supervise your dog when around kids or other people

 

 
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Posted by on November 10, 2015 in About

 

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Going away over the Christmas Holidays? Now is the time to start thinking about the needs of your dog. Boarding Kennel Stress in Dogs: Things owners need to know!

Going away over the Christmas Holidays? Now is the time to start thinking about the needs of your dog. Boarding Kennel Stress in Dogs: Things owners need to know!

With Christmas just a few months away, many people will be taking a holiday break and maybe going away. Now is the time to start thinking about your pets and who is going to look after them, if they can’t go with you. Dogs can and do get stressed, so if you are planning to leave your pets in a boarding facility, now is the time, to start looking around.

If your pets have never been boarded before, day stays and day/night stays are recommended and should really, be started now. Boarding kennel stress is real! Dogs become stressed the same as you and I and putting your dog into a boarding kennels, can be very stressful for them.

Imagine taking a young child to a strange place and leaving it with people it doesn’t know. The child will more often than not, become distressed and upset. The same thing, can and does happen to dogs.

I hope the enclosed link: Titled “Boarding Kennel Stress in Dogs: Things owners need to know!” will help and inform dog owners, so everyone including your pets, will have a stress free holiday.

 
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Posted by on September 3, 2015 in About

 

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