Archives for Energy and Dogs category

Yorkie Nanny

Posted on Jan 29, 2014
Behavioral Modification, Dog Training, Energy and Dogs, Learn From A Dog, Palm Springs Dog Trainer, Palm Springs Dog Training, Training, Yorkie
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I have often said, “The best dog trainer is another dog.”  A well-adjusted, trained, and dog-friendly dog that is.  I do my job of observing and contributing when needed but mostly I say things like, “Wear them out, Zoe!”

Zoe looks like a giant Yorkie and that makes their interactions that much more enjoyable.

If you need assistance in training and/or behavior modification from either Zoe, myself, or both of us, we are here to help!

Has Your Dog Been Misused?

Posted on May 20, 2010
Dog Training, Energy and Dogs, Learn From A Dog, Socialization, Timid Dog Behavior
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I have clients, particularly those who have a dog with an unknown past, ask if I think their dog has been abused.  One of the definitions given for abuse is misuse.  I think it applies adequately to the amazing dogs who share our lives.

Misuse doesn’t feel as strong as abuse.  If a dog is left alone in a yard without being socialized adequately, I consider that misuse.  A dog in this situation may later appear as though someone had hit it because it becomes afraid of everything that wasn’t a part of its life as it matured.  It can tuck its tail and cower when it hears an unfamiliar sound as if it had been hit.

A dog may cower and release their bladder when someone reaches for them as if they had been hit in the past, when really it was misused in the sense that it didn’t learn positive touch as a pup.  Some of this behavior can be hard-wired, but a lot of it comes from how they are socialized and the appropriate attention given as they mature.

A high energy dog could be considered misused if it isn’t given a job.  That job can come in the form of specific training, appropriate exercise, and/or something like agility training which provides focus, exercise,  and structure.

Describing our dogs as having been abused should not be something we coddle or shy away from; rather we should find positive ways to encourage these beings to participate and be in life with a family.  Most dogs who have been truly abused have forgotten or lost the ability to be dogs.  There’s nothing like another confident dog to show them the way.  I often bring a dog of mine to work with timid dogs.  He does in minutes what could take me hours.

For as much as we love our dogs, we are humans!  We need to spend less time attempting to see their humanness and more time seeing who they are as dogs.  They will be much happier and so will we.  Every dog is different just as every human is different.

If you think your dog has been misused or you may be contributing to a life of misuse, please contact me.  I am glad to provide guidance.  The more dogs who are happy dogs with happy humans, the fewer that end up in shelters.

Sarcasm And Dogs

Posted on Nov 24, 2009
Dog Psychology, Dog Smile, Dogs and Sarcasm, Energy and Dogs
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Most people get it by now that dogs pick up on our energy.  We pick up on theirs as well, but most humans prefer to act like they don’t get it!  Why is that?

I was wondering if dogs understand when we are being sarcastic?  I think they do.  Why?  Because we have an energy about us that is usually playful and play is something they understand.

A few examples:

  • Zoe has taught herself to open the slider door.  That’s not necessarily a bad thing except she doesn’t know or doesn’t care to know how to close it behind her.  I usually look up with a smile and say, “close the door, you’re letting the flies out.”  I swear she will turn around, look at me with her ears up and tail wagging as she gives me a big smile.  Please don’t act like you’ve never seen a dog smile.
  • Mac doesn’t run, he frolicks!  However, he typically saves this spontaneous happy walk for when he has something in his mouth that isn’t his.  I say sarcastically, “good boy!”  He brings whatever it is to me and proudly hands it over!  Seriously.

If I can be a little sarcastic with them, it helps me to take things in stride, and I do think they get it.  They get my energy and intent about what I’m saying.  For me, it’s entertainment.  For them, they’re just words that make me smile and they like that.