Terrible Teenagers

Remember that bumbling ball of fur who plopped into a “sit” and melted into “down” with just a couple of minutes of practice? And, the adorable way he dropped his little head and gave you the best sad puppy eyes when his shark teeth hit your hand and you instinctively said “ouch”? Well, those days are gone …Read More

Training Deposits

Our dogs bring us so much joy. Who else in this world wiggles when you open the front door after being gone for TWO. WHOLE. MINUTES? And, our beloved canines, remind us how important laughing and playing, walking through the forest preserves or snuggling on a chilly, wet, winter’s day are to our own replenishing needs, like no other …Read More

Machine Mindset

Words like “fix”, “stop”, “guaranteed” and “instantly” can be synonymous with dog behavior and training. But, as trainers who have studied and carefully watch our canine counterparts’ behavior; we often cringe when we see those words. Dogs are unbelievably intelligent, highly individual in their motivation and thresholds for stress or distraction; and also deeply emotional. And, …Read More

Smell the Flowers

Two days before Christmas, I could feel every jagged rock under my boot as I tried to catch my breath. My nephew, Isaac, was racing ahead, his long legs moved so effortlessly up the steep incline. And, Gavin’s eyes were as bright as mine surely were years before at the sight of presents; but, for fluttering …Read More

The Scenic Route

Closure. I was not sure there was going to be an official end and even less convinced it would give me the warm fuzzy, sky seems brighter, birds chirping louder and more joyous feeling that I was hoping would wash over me. But, I drove 400 miles, my GPS guiding me through small towns and gorgeous landscapes …Read More

Over It Syndrome

Have you ever had one of those days where you spill coffee on yourself as you race out the door, then, JUST as you notice the giant dent on your rear bumper that was not there last evening when you parked; you feel a SQUISH under your favorite pair of boots that you know has to be dog poop? …Read More

Three Ways Your Dog is NOT Trying to Dominate You

I hear it everyday from highly intelligent, extremely caring and intuitive folks; “my dog is trying to dominate me because he or she is (INSERT NAUGHTY BEHAVIOR)”.  It is an easy inference to make. Some professional trainers subscribe to a manhandle and choke dogs philosophy in order to get our furry friends to comply with cues. If you hire and trust …Read More

A Cautionary Tale

It was 63 degrees and the sun’s rays were peeking through the emerald green leaves like sparkly bands. The breeze was just a whisper and my sweet little Gavin was attached to my hip; trotting along on a perfect Tuesday morning. The first weeks of summer are oddly quiet; usually Lil’ Big Head wiggles, jiggles and squirms …Read More

The Controversial Muzzle

“Hannibal Lector”, “Cujo” or my least favorite, “how dare you have that vicious beast out of the house?” while glaring at the person holding the leash. I have heard all those mutterings, and more, when working outside with a client and their muzzled dog. Muzzles prevent bites, it is that simple. If your dog has bitten another …Read More

To Freeze, Or Not To Freeze

The Kong, that is. What did dog lovers do before the invention of the Kong? It’s a staple in most canine homes. And, when it is not; the instant I etch the bubbly-shaped chew toy, clients’ eyes light up and they nod, despite my horrific drawing skills. A question that folks often ask is, should I freeze …Read More