Become a Dog Detective


Most days pass in a fairly ho-hum way for dogs. There is the early morning ritual of waking up and stretching in preparation for a walk to go potty and release some energy. Then, it is usually back home for a tasty breakfast and hopefully another walk as a potty break before the rest of the family leaves the house and heads to work or school. At this point, a typical dog’s day tends to consist of lounging about and finding ways to pass the time until a dog walker arrives midday and then the family returns in the late afternoon or early evening. But, what exactly is your dog doing while you are away? When we hang out at home, we can pass the time with reading, surfing the internet, watching TV, or spring cleaning. But, what does a dog do with all this time on their paws? You.

Is Your Dog a Jumping Bean?

Is Your Dog a Jumping Bean?

There are so many doggie ‘misdeeds’ that are unintentionally taught by people. Of these, one of the most commonly complained about is jumping up on people to say hello. There is a wide variety of dog jumping styles; the least egregious is the little dog who trots over and delicately places his or her front paws on someone to say hello (unless the person is wearing stockings which may be ripped). Then there is the bounder and bouncer. This dog comes bounding up to you and bounces about in between paw jabs. The jumper and grabber is the one that seems to cause the most angst for pet parents. This dog jumps up and uses his or her front paws to grab your leg or waist as if to say “I’ve got you and I’m not letting go until you give me a nice scratch behind the ear.” Friends and.

Chew On This! Teach Your Dog to Have a Chew Toy Habit

Chew On This! Teach Your Dog to Have a Chew Toy Habit

Your dog’s tendency to chew on anything he can sink his teeth into is a pretty normal canine behavior. However, like many normal, natural and necessary dog behaviors, unfocused chewing (i.e. chewing on things you don’t approve of) is not likely to win your dog many household fans. When dealing with a chewing problem, it isn’t about stopping your dog from chewing (that would be like trying to stop them from wagging their tail!). It’s what your dog chews on that counts! So, the focus should be on helping your dog develop a strong chew toy habit so that he is not inclined to choose illegal items. Many people try to teach their dogs not to chew on inappropriate items by punishing them every time they chew on unsuitable objects. This is not only unpleasant for both dog and person, but supremely inefficient when you consider how many unsuitable objects.

Dog Park and Play Group Etiquette


Several times a week we offer small dog socials and puppy play groups at different locations in Manhattan. These trainer moderated groups are a wonderful way to allow dogs under 20 pounds (for the small dog socials) and pups under 5 1/2 months old (for the puppy play groups) an opportunity to socialize with other dogs and their people in a supervised, indoor environment. Playing with other, well socialized dogs is a superb way to allow a dog to burn off mental and physical energy as well as to improve upon and/or maintain social skills. As an added bonus, these sorts of play groups can be a lot of fun for people as well. Whether you take your dog to an indoor, trainer supervised play group or to a safely enclosed, clean dog park there are some rules of conduct that are sure to make the experience as valuable and.

How to Train a Dog or Cat to Let You Clip Their Nails

How to Train a Dog or Cat to Let You Clip Their Nails

My little dog Nora and I were spending the day working at Animal Haven Shelter (OK, I was working and she was romping around interspersed with periods of lounging), when I decided to take a break and spend a bit of time on grooming her. She likes to stick with the scruffy, little terrier look, so I focused on a bath and trimming her nails. As Nora sat in front of me on the floor of the grooming room and daintily held her paw out for me, one of the shelter volunteers commented on how calm she was about having her nails clipped, “She almost seems to like it!,” she exlaimed. While this would be a moment that would make any pet parent (especially a pet parent who is also a dog trainer) proud, I felt I had to be honest and point out that while Nora is about as.

How to Host a Puppy Socialization and Training Party


Hosting a puppy party is a terrific way to enlist the help of your friends and neighbors in your efforts to socialize and teach your new pup. It is also a great opportunity to show off your new bundle of cuteness! As a rule of thumb, to be adequately socialized and to develop sufficient confidence with a variety of people, your puppy needs to be in contact with at least 50 people before he is 16 weeks old. A failure to provide early social exposure could result in playing years of catch up and spending loads of time resolving fear based behavior problems. In addition to hosting your own puppy parties, be sure to enroll in a puppy kindergarten training class asap. For your first party, invite a few friends over and plan for them to arrive just prior to your pup’s meal time. This way they can use your.

Collars and Harnesses and Head Halters, Oh My!

Collars and Harnesses and Head Halters, Oh My!

Yesterday I had a conversation with a client with a lovely 8 month shepherd mix named Addie. She was adopted from a shelter in upstate New York at around 4 months old and her new family contacted us for training shortly thereafter. In addition to typical puppy training (housetraining, manners, learning to spend time quietly alone, etc.) we worked to help Addie’s new Dad resolve some fear issues Addie was suffering from when out for a walk on the busy streets of New York City. The loud noises of trucks and buses and the endless stream of people and other dogs were things Addie had not been exposed to at all during the first four months of her life. In addition, Addie seemed temperamentally inclined to be cautious and concerned. After a few weeks, Addie’s Dad had made great progress with her in regards to housetraining and basic manners, and.

Is Your Dog a Canine Good Citizen?


Whether or not you are interested in teaming up with your dog to potentially win awards, titles and ribbons, looking to formally structured and organized events such as obedience, agility, herding and field trials can be a terrific way to set goals for you and your dog to achieve together in order to improve your dog’s manners, mental and physical well-being, and their relationship with you. One of the first challenges of this sort that many pet parents aspire to is earning a Canine Good Citizen (CGC) award. Established in 1989, the CGC program was launched by the AKC to help encourage people to help their dogs learn the manners required to be appreciated and respected members of society. The CGC evaluation is a ten part test which includes the following: 1. Accepting a friendly stranger: This test demonstrates that the dog will allow a friendly stranger to approach it.

Dog Training Should Be…


With so much conflicting advice out there, choosing how to teach your dog can be a daunting task. When choosing an approach to dog training keep these tips in mind: EASY The most salient feature of up-to-date, modern, science based dog training is its ease. Everyone should be able to do it – you, your family, friends, and even adult supervised children. Modern methods make it easier for you to teach other people to train your dog with you and that means a positive side effect is positive social experiences for your dog (and you!). EFFICIENT We are all on tight schedules, so it’s essential that learning how to teach your dog take very little time to master. If it is a difficult, lengthy process, no one will bother – not you and certainly not your family and friends. ENJOYABLE Why shouldn’t training be enjoyable? Your dog’s education should be.

Coprophagia: How to Stop Your Dog from Eating Poop


If one were to make a list of all the dog behaviors we love it would probably be quite long. A deliciously happy tail wag, a bow to solicit play, and a soft sigh before resting their head on your lap would surely make the list. But, those are just a few of the many reasons why dogs bring us immense joy every day. On the other hand, my list of dog behaviors that are not so favorable is rather short. For me, like most, one of the few things on that list would surely be coprophagia. Coprophagia is the consumption of feces. This can include the feces of others as well as thier own. Some species ingest the feces of their mother as a way of ingesting required bacteria in order to benefit from the nutrition of plants. Other species ingest their own feces as a possible source of.