Learning Patience from Dogs

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I am a teacher. My days are spent showing dogs acceptable new behaviors and coaching their humans on how to do the same. I have learned a lot over the years by listening and observing, and I have found that enlightenment does not stop when I leave work.  Dogs are amazing creatures. Without their knowledge, …Read More

Winter Training for Your Dog

Howard eating snow

Whether you frown or smile when snow falls, you have to remember your beloved dog(s) during winter months. With a few simple tips, you can keep your dog happy, healthy and training momentum strong even when life is thrown off by frigid temperatures. Health and safety are priority.  Many Chicago residents live without a yard. …Read More

The Right Way to Use Treats

Avoid common mistakes using treats in dog training

As a reward-based training advocates, we see remarkable transformations in canine behavior by tapping into each dog’s top motivator(s). We find it is much easier to determine what is expected of your dog in troublesome situations and train an acceptable behavior than to punish a naughty act. It makes perfect sense, good is behavior is rewarded, it happens more …Read More

The Cuteness Curse

Ask before petting a dog

Look at this face.  You want to pet him, don’t you? Have you ever wondered if he wanted you to pet him?  Just because a dog is cute and looks good to you does not mean he or she loves to be touched; especially by strangers. I am not suggesting that you get on hands …Read More

Recipes for Stuffing Chew Toys

Recipes for filling your dog's toys or bones

Has peanut butter been met with less enthusiasm than it used to? Even if your dog has yet not turned up his snout to the standard Kong filling, a little change here and there and can go a long way when filling a Kong or other treat dispensing chew toy. Consider yourself lucky if your dog goes nuts …Read More

Leash Training for People

Jack Leash Walking

In the dog world, it’s important to practice new behaviors without distractions and slowly introduce new noises, smells and sights. That all makes perfect senses in theory. But, how do you train your dog to walk on a leash inside when you really need a loose leash outside? It is all about foundation and setting …Read More

Dinner Guests AND a Good Dog

Successful dog training for holidays

Oh, the joys of celebrating and amazing food with your family and friends.  Entertaining guests is exciting  but can be stressful, even without a bouncy dog to think about. If you plan to include your dog in dinnertime festivities, here are a few tidbits to make the event enjoyable for you and him. 1. Give …Read More

The Couch Debate

JaxandLouie

I often see sheepish looks and lowered eyes when I ask the question “is your dog allowed on the couch?” I would like to set the record straight that allowing shared couch time for most dogs does not mean your dog will assume ruler of your home.  However, if your dog has ever growled or tensed as you …Read More

How to Calm an Aggressive Dog

izzy1

If you have ever been surprised by a sudden display of aggression, the following can help you safely diffuse the situation and prevent it from happening in the future.  Once you do so, immediately call a qualified training and behavioral professional to help you determine the cause and also give you techniques to teach the dog new ways to cope with aggressive triggers. Be calm. If …Read More

Selecting the Right Chew Toys

In his "frog legs" pose.

The Kong product line is popular for its durability and versatility. It is often my first choice to redirect innate chewing behaviors because it is virtually indestructible by most dogs. However, like any dog toy, there are exceptionally strong chewers who can annihilate even the Extreme Black Kong (considered the strongest).  If your dog has destroyed every toy you …Read More