Helpful Pointers for Training Your Dog

The Morning Bus Stop: Part 2 – Or How to Get Your Dogs to Stop Barking

To continue on the Bus Stop theme, I thought I’d share how I got my dogs to stop barking like maniacs every time the bus rounded the corner. But first a little background on how I came upon the solution:

I have a friend who I aspire to be when I grow up. She is a retired Ph.D. psychologist and is well into her second career as a dog trainer. In my opinion, she ranks as one of the top trainers in the country. But she’s a private person, so if any of you live in western NC and need a good trainer, please contact me and I’ll put you in touch with her.

We were talking on the phone the other […]

By |2016-10-24T09:56:49-04:00October 29th, 2007|.My Dogs and Me, Dog Training, Dogs in General|19 Comments

Training “Quiet” the Brilliant Aussie Way

At dinner, Kiera lies by my chair while we eat. She likes to monitor my eating, as she knows she gets my leftovers when I’m done. If I take too long, she starts “talking” to tell me to hurry up.

Andrew finally gets annoyed and wants me to discipline her to get her to stop being pushy. So I remember Suzanne Clothier’s time-out lesson where you remove the dog from where you are for a few moments to essentially help the dog “reorient” itself toward better self-control. I decide that the next time Kiera talks, I’ll put her in a time-out.

I don’t have to wait very long. She talks, I say, “Oops, so sorry…” and close her in the bathroom (right […]

Five Facts You Need to Know Before Choosing an Australian Shepherd

Kiera Australian Shepherd

She’s beautiful, isn’t she?

She’s also smart, athletic, a snap to train, devoted, telepathic, and my right-hand girl. In fact, she’s everything you could want in a dog — and more.

It’s the “more” part that gets most people into trouble. The truth is — for as beautiful and brainy as Australian Shepherds are — they aren’t for everyone.

The question is: Are they for you?

Let me walk you through a few key points to help you decide.

In order to live with and raise a healthy, happy Aussie, you really do only need to know a couple of things. If you get a book on Australian Shepherds, these points will be covered, albeit […]

Professional Dog Trainer?

Andrew, reading the morning paper in one hand with a cup of coffee in the other, started quoting an article on one of the more popular dog trainers du jour. Every time he was about to say what the problem was, I absent-mindedly pre-empted him with the correct evaluation and training procedure.

Finally, he looked at me and said, “Why don’t you become a professional dog trainer? Any time I mention any article or magazine piece on dog training you always know the answers.”

At first I thought he was just jokingly pointing out the ridiculous amount of knowledge I have stuffed into my head about dogs. But he wasn’t. He continued, “You’re already helping all your friends and family for free.”

And […]

By |2016-10-24T09:56:56-04:00March 20th, 2007|.My Dogs and Me, Dog Training, Dogs in General|9 Comments

Jon Katz, Dog Trainer or Trouble for Dogs

From the mail bag: Allie asks: Just wondering. What do you think of Jon Katz? As a person, a writer, and now a trainer?

Dear Allie, I can’t comment on Katz as a person; I’ve never met the man. And I know all too well how it can be hazardous to draw conclusions about someone who writes about pieces of his or her life. As a reader, it’s easy to think you know the whole person, when you really only know the small portrait they’ve painted.

I’ve read a couple of Katz’s books; he can tell a good story. Though I find some of the topics he writes about, and the way in which he writes about them maddening. For instance, I […]

By |2016-10-24T09:56:59-04:00January 18th, 2007|Dog Training, Dogs in General, The Mail Bag|5 Comments

Cesar Millan – Take 2

Seems Cesar has a way of stirring things up wherever he goes. He’s attracted a fair amount of attention here in Shanleyville. Irma, a thoughtful reader, left a comment on why she found Cesar’s approach useful for certain situations. She brings up some valid points.

Different trainers become popular with different people for different reasons. Obviously, the Dog Whisperer show has struck a nerve. I don’t find that surprising; there are a lot of dogs who need more training. And there are a lot of people who have problem dogs and don’t know how to help them. I’m just saddened that, with all the progress and advances in training and all the truly great trainers out there, it’s been an old-fashioned, […]

By |2016-10-24T09:57:01-04:00November 14th, 2006|Dog Training, Dogs in General|1 Comment