Shaping Demystified

My dog Idgie is eleven years old, and when I got her as an 8 week old puppy I was determined to “shape” 100% of her training. I was under the impression that luring was mindless, and I had fairly recently removed the use of aversive tools and practices...
Jumping to Aversives

Jumping to Aversives

Today I am thinking about an 11 year old kid who invented a leash to stop leash pulling.  You’ve heard the story. The system delivered electric stimulation to the dog if the dog pulled. He was nationally recognized and asked to bring his invention to a contest or...

When Choice Isn’t An Option

I talk about giving dogs choices a lot. In fact, I think offering more choice to our dogs is something often overlooked and extremely important. Choice is anxiety’s greatest enemy, and control over one’s own outcomes is a hardwired primary reinforcer. The...
The Power of YES

The Power of YES

I pulled into the parking lot for my weekly competitive obedience class. I went around to the back of my car, opened it up, and saw my dog settle further into the back of his crate. I knew he didn’t want to go in. I reached for him, snapped on his leash, and he...
Happy Crating

Happy Crating

The first night Idgie came home she screamed. She didn’t whine or fuss she full-on banshee-screamed. For eight hours. She didn’t stop. My colleagues told me I had to wait her out. I had to be careful not to let her out of the crate if she was screaming. So...