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dog behavior

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Why You Should Use a Dog Trainer

Even when there are no behavioral issues Most Americans don’t hire dog trainers until things have gotten out of hand with their dogs. Unfortunately, this makes things harder in the long run because it’s far easier to prevent a problem than it is to fix one. We’ll discuss why you should use a dog trainer, even when there are no behavioral issues. In fact, studies show that attending puppy classes can help puppies stay in their homes and are more trainable as adults. Working with a dog trainer when your dog is just a puppy or a newly adopted adult…

What do I do for my dog who is seemingly aggressive or reactive to other dogs?

Aggressive or reactive behavior is one of the most common dog behavior issues I see in my work as a dog behavior consultant. This is likely due to our increasingly restrictive urban environment. Many dogs are frustrated, excited, or even fearful at the sight of other dogs. These strong emotions can manifest as barking, lunging, and generally behaving aggressively towards other dogs. So, what do you do when your dog is seemingly aggressive or reactive to other dogs? The first thing to understand when dealing with a leash reactive dog is that they are really struggling emotionally in most cases.…

The Psychology of Your Dog

And the importance of understanding them Dogs are a truly fascinating species. Many experts agree that they’re self-domesticated. They’re uniquely skilled at reading human expressions and understanding our gestures. Humans routinely both over- and under-estimate their cognition: we attribute simple foraging behaviors to spite, we assume that their tendency to learn context-specific behaviors is actually stubbornness. However, the psychology of your dog is important! The reality is, studies into dog psychology are actually quite new. Up until recently, dogs weren’t considered worthy of rigorous scientific study because they’re not wild animals. Researchers like Patricia McConnell, Clive Wynne, Adam Miklosi, Bryan Hare,…

Moving with Your Dog

Moving is stressful for us, but imagine being a dog. Your humans are packing away all your things, but you have no idea where you are even going! We know they will love their new homes, but we need to make sure the process is as stress-free as possible for our beloved pets. Here are some things to think about when it comes to moving with your dog. While Packing You can always train and treat your dog around packing and boxes. If they seem to be bothered by the loud noises of the tape and boxes moving, make them a safe area…

Puppy Behaviors to Look Out For

Bringing home a puppy is a time of joy and apprehension! When I brought my new puppy home a few weeks ago, I spent a lot of time and energy scrutinizing his every move. Was this behavior normal? Would he grow up to be a happy, confident dog? Did I need to worry about anything? What are the behaviors to look out for in a new puppy? It was exhausting. There are certain problem behaviors that are incredibly common and normal puppy behavior: chewing, crying when alone, having potty accidents, and biting at hands, to name a few. But there…

Why are some dogs more hyper than others?

Plus, tips to help calm a hyper dog Just like people, not all dogs have the same energy level. Some dogs are much more hyper than others. Some dogs are more hyper than others because we bred them for different purposes. Genetics can absolutely influence your dog’s baseline energy level. It makes sense that a border collie is more hyper than a pug, because a border collie’s job (or at least her great-grandparent’s job) is to spend all day watching and herding sheep. A border collie’s hypervigilance, speed, stamina, drive to control movement, and endless energy is all part of…

Best Practices for Dog Obedience Training: How to Discipline a Dog with Unwanted Behaviors

I’m going to let you in on a secret with dog obedience training or really any dog training methods in general. We all have things we want to change about our dog. Heck, we all have things we want to change about ourselves. But for unsuspecting owners, attempts to discipline their animal’s bad behaviors can quickly turn into a big screaming match that leaves everyone feeling worse for wear. I’m going to suggest a different way of looking at things, one that will allow you to change your dog’s behaviors rather than passively reprimanding them. Stick with me for some…

Dog Training- How Long Will It Take?

How Long Will It Take To Train My Dog? When you come home to a yellow puddle on the floor or a new hole in the yard, it can be easy to ask: when will it end? When will my dog finally graduate to the “trained” category? Is dog training a never ending cycle? Unfortunately, the answer isn’t as simple as that. The Truth It may hurt to hear, but I’m going to dish it out anyway: you’re never done. Dog training is a lifelong process. You will need to continue to build your dog’s skills and reinforce behaviors in…

What A Dog’s Body Language Means

Dogs, just like humans, have feelings. They surge with excitement, cower in fear, and give you a puzzled look when worried. Dogs emotions are ever changing – especially in new environments and situations. Knowing your dog’s body language will allow you to help your dog adjust throughout changing situations. I’ve found this out first hand, no dog is the same as the next. If you are a multi-dog family, you can probably relate. What scares my one dog nearly to death, doesn’t even phase the other. They have different temperaments, different needs, and different ways in which they cope with…