Portland Blog Competition: May I Speak to the Manager?

By Tina Ferner Last week, I received a voicemail that a trainer NEVER wants to hear. It went like this, “Tina, this is Eileen. Dolly just killed Miley.” Dolly was a rescued mixed breed dog that weighed approximately 65 pounds while Miley was a Maltese mix that weighed 8 pounds. There had been problems in the past with resource guarding […]

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The What, Where and When of Rewards

By Lily Mickleburgh  The use of rewards in dog training is becoming increasingly popular as an effective way of encouraging desired behaviours. However, subtle differences in what you use as a reward, where and when you reward them, can all change depending on your end goal. This may also vary depending on breed traits, age of the dog and whether you want to […]

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Dog Owner Confidence Crash!

There’s so much written about emotions of our dogs, how they’re thinking and what they’re feeling in various provocative situations and scenarios, but sometimes I think we, the dog owners, may end up being a little neglected! You can’t successfully help dogs with behavioral or training issues alone; you also have to see how they interact with their owner/dog guardian […]

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A Quadrant by Any Other Name is Still a Cornerstone of Operant Learning

This 2003 edition book is $4.89 on Amazon. Contents: priceless. There is a science that deals directly with how organisms learn and how to use that information to change the environment in order to change behavior. It’s called applied behavior analysis (ABA). It is the applied version of behavior analysis, which was referred to as the experimental analysis of behavior […]

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10 Reasons Why the Holidays Might Not Be So Full of Festive Cheer for Your Pet

It’s nearly Christmas, traditionally the time of year when we look forward to enjoying lots of yummy food, time with our friends and family, hopefully a break from work and of course – pressies! Lots of us also think about involving our dogs and cats and other furries in the festivities; gifts, advent calendars, novelty costumes etc. but how often […]

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Which Pavlov Is on Your Shoulder?

The trainer Bob Bailey is often quoted as saying that when one is training an animal, “Pavlov is on your shoulder.” He is reminding us that while we are training operant behaviors (sit, down, fetch, weave), there are also respondent behaviors and respondent conditioning occurring. Respondent behaviors are behaviors that are generally involuntary and that include reflexes, internal surges of […]

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