The Rollercoaster of Reactivity

By Mary Jean Alsina A leash gives a dog no option to escape, leaving him little recourse but to behave aggressively in an attempt to keep the perceived threat at bay © Can Stock Photo / hannadarzy Leash reactivity can be one of the most common (and embarrassing) problems dog…

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The Bigger Picture

By Morag Heirs Shep’s owners were too busy for an energetic, intelligent border collie. His deafness was only part of the issue © Can Stock Photo/cynoclub Within my day to day life as a canine professional, I am regularly asked for advice on cases where standard training approaches seem to…

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Why Counterconditioning “Doesn’t Work”

By Angelica Steinker Counterconditioning can only be successful when a dog feels safe and relaxed © Can Stock Photo/damedeeso A common criticism of counterconditioning is that it does not work. While there can be many reasons why a behavior modification protocol based on counterconditioning fails, it is, in fact, almost…

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Examining Bird vs. Human Expectations

By Sheila S. Blanchette Building trust: the human-avian relationship goal should be creating a mutual trusting partnership © Can Stock Photo / Vividrange Anthropomorphism is quite a mouthful of a word, defined by Lexico (2021) as “the attribution of human characteristics or behavior to a god, animal, or object.” Anthropomorphism…

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The Ever-Changing World of Service Dog Training

By Veronica Sanchez Author Veronica Sanchez with her service dog, Mr. Sulu: Service dogs are trained to do specific tasks to assist their person, e.g. to alert a deaf person to a door knock, or to pick up dropped objects © Veronica Sanchez The service dog industry is ever growing…

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Saving Detainees and Dogs, One Life at a Time

By Lisa Waggoner  The Rescued Program is 12 weeks in length and comprises eight to 10 detainees working with six to eight dogs selected by two shelter partners © Lisa Waggoner “The rehabilitation of inmates requires a willing state of mind, a helpful attitude which insists upon finding something of…

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Tracking Equines

By Vicki Conroy The ponies started their tracking training with food on flat polymer discs on the ground, then proceeded to targeting the treat-loaded socks, and then following the trail by scent © Vicki Conroy A while ago I hosted a tracking workshop for dogs at my hobby farm in…

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A Life without Pets

By Fiona De Rosa and Fiona Warton  Elderly people may find themselves having to give up their pets when they move into a care facility © Grant Nowell Photography As the aging population of the western world increases, more people are finding themselves moving from their own homes and into…

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Lessons in Empathy

By Kathy Wolff “The most important skill we need to teach our dogs isn’t found in ‘obedience’ rhetoric, but rather in finding peace in the day-to-day living of life” – Kathy Wolff, with Cree © Kathy Wolff According to Wikipedia (2021), empathy is the “capacity to understand or feel what…

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