… or is it mental masturbation?

say it how it is – series There are those that like polite, easy to digest information, a fast food version of what is going on with their dog. Scratching the surface, tickling the tip of the iceberg, but nothing more. And there are others that like the deeper more full-bodied list of details, savoring my…

NO!

NO! This two-letter word means nothing, absolutely nothing, to a dog. It is the inflection in a voice, the menacing tone, the hard human eyes, and sometimes the raised primate arm or finger that mean something. The body language and tone tell a dog, all is not well. But it is used all of the time, over…

Dogs, their rules, snow, and hearts …

It’s early yet, not quite winter, but we have snow, a solid hard frost, eighteen degree mornings, and that yummy feeling of wanting to be in the kitchen making delicious savory anythings, and sipping strong hot black coffee. And every year, there are two things that happen that truly clarify summer is over, and my…

It’s a TONGUE thing …

If you are into canine body language than you are one of those persons on this planet that is hyper aware of how a dog uses their tongue. A student of the tongue more or less. It is one of the first overt body language signals a new dog trainer learns to observe, in social…

I don’t want my dog to think that just because …..

It is a warm, nearly hot, sunny summer morning. And yet, my feet are tucked under Story as I sit and type this out. Even with the heat, the weight of his body and the wooliness of his fur on my feet feel just about perfect. Just so you know, almost everything I have written…

Is there really such a thing as a stubborn dog?

Every day of every week I have a person tell me their dog is stubborn and won’t do ‘this or that’. And just so we are clear, this is the formal definition of STUBBORN – ‘having or showing dogged determination not to change one’s attitude or position on something, especially in spite of good arguments…

the dog not of your fairy tale

I am somewhat sensitive to emotions, body language, and energy. Not just the human type, but all animal type, with the exception of reptiles. I don’t get reptiles and I am pretty certain they don’t get me. I don’t need verbal communication to get what is going on. While my title is professional trainer, it…

growing behaviors, it’s a bit like silly putty

When you step up to the plate and start to teach your dog a new behavior, it should feel awkward, and a bit foreign, somewhat exciting, and for sure unformed and unrecognizable. You are growing a behavior, not harvesting the benefits of the behavior just yet. Growing behaviors is what I refer to as the DISCOVERY…

Flex, telling her story …

Years ago I worked with a dog and her person. It was a pretty standard introduction. Hello, I just adopted a dog from a rescue, and I would like to learn how to work with her. She is a mature female, she apparently ran around on a bunch of land all day while her original…

From Noah & Kinsey – Scholarship Recipients 2015

This is the second year of our Riffle Memorial Scholarship. We had two recipients this year, and it has been a pleasure to work with these Teams, watch them grow, watch them hit bumps but get back up with new knowledge, and to open the world of the ‘behind the scenes’ part of training, which…