Puppy Classroom Trade Secret #79

The Teams that choose to come to puppy class are Teams that are showing you they want to learn, even if just by the effort of showing up, sans practicing during the week. That is a huge first step. I teach the basics, maybe some instability / balance work, tricks here and there, work and…

… because it has been a life time worth of practice so far …

I love moving with dogs. Just as in learning how to walk, one foot in front of the other, and realizing how this opens up the entire world for exploration, learning how to move with a dog opens up a whole new category of relationship. There is this thing I call the ‘sweet spot’ when…

the last dance …

A couple of days ago I had my dogs over at our gym. I had a crate set up for Ocean in case she just wanted to hang out while I worked the Boyz. I’m not sure why I thought that though, she has never said no to work. Ever. As soon as Ocean saw…

experiences, reality, perspective – they do count

What if you had a dog that didn’t like puppies, but you decided to get a puppy anyway. So you picked up a $50 puppy out of the back of a truck at a rodeo. Your puppy was systematically attacked by your adult dog anytime the puppy moved around the house or was interested in…

Top 10 Tips – the final from my Gran Dame

I pass along life lessons from my dog Franny, in no particular order. What she taught me about herself, living with animals in general, people, relationships, and living life your own way. top 10 tips – Dogs judge. They have a fairly amazing and innate bullshit meter, some more than others. Don’t think you can…

lower your expectations … or put more into it

My current Cross Training class has me so inspired. All older adolescent dogs, none of them straight forward easy, some down right frustrating for the owners, and a couple with over the top behaviors that require even more managment. Yet they are ALL doing the work, ALL asking great questions, ALL watching the videos I…

a simple dirt road lesson

In 2003, every Friday for an entire summer and fall, Ocean and I would get in the car at 4am, drive about 100 miles to a friends farm, tend to and work sheep, do some farm chores, and then come home. I was so addicted and loved every minute of that journey and adventure. My…

choice is at the core

Story was laying down at my side while I was talking to a friend on Main st. the other day. If I stop to engage with someone else, and there is nothing else to sniff or mark, he flops down and waits. As I walked away with Story, a women came up behind me and…

I am a coach

I am a coach. I coach our Teams, both people and dog. I coach my dogs, who are my Team. And through coaching I have found one of my parts that is truly me. While I am a certified professional trainer, it is my coaching that I focus on, that I love, and where I…

puppy school of hard knocks

It isn’t that uncommon to hear people, especially at dog parks, express the feelings and/or sentiments of ‘letting older dogs’ put their puppy in it’s place. Usually it’s the high energy, performance, working line puppies that are often the brunt of this philosophy. Maybe, just maybe, if another dog really scares them enough, they will…