I talk about consent a lot. Most of the time I am talking about it in a dog training context, but I think its pretty important all the time–don’t you dare insist my niece give you a hug, for instance–and its value extends so much further than can be seen at first glance. In … More When “No” is the Answer
When I was at The Ranch a few weeks ago a common conversation came up–common amongst positive reinforcement-based trainers. The topic was something along the lines of “how do we (the “good” trainers) help the public transition away from aversive techniques and methodologies?” Whenever this question comes up (in any of its various forms) discussions … More Shut Up and Show Off
Continuing education is important to me. When I plan my professional year I take a hard look at this component. Having control over my own business and my own learning has its perks; but these days its easy to be overwhelmed with choices (what a great problem to have!). We are barely into the 2018 … More Learning Rocks!
Not many who read this blog would argue against the fact that a positive reinforcement based training plan is almost always the best path to take when attempting to train an animal (or a person). And yet, something I am going to call “fork in the road” training is immensely popular amongst sport dog training, … More Lighting the Path
Sniffing. Dogs do it constantly; and we can only pretend to understand what all they are gathering from their world as they move about, nose to the earth. A typical dog person probably doesn’t think much of this behavior, but dog sport people have long thought of sniffing as their nemesis; something to never encourage, … More Sniffing is Not the Enemy
A weird thing happened to me in my twenties; I had this rare malignant breast tumor. That seems unlucky as hell, but I’m here because it was a rare kind, and because it was not metastatic–and that’s damn lucky. That experience is one I’d gladly undo; one that caused high levels of anxiety and stress … More My dog, my mirror
I used to be a trainer, or a teacher, of people and their dogs. I’d see them once a week then send them off to do their thing, only to discuss what they could improve upon the next time I saw them. Sometimes I’d only see a person once. This is still how most trainers … More What is a coach?