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…

shutting a dog down

It isn’t hard to shut your dog down, lots of people do it. Shutting a dog down means ‘taking the wind out of their sails’. It is an effective way to let a dog know they have no choices, and it is your way, period. Family pet owners to seasoned professionals are capable of doing…

Top 10 tips – for the Adolescent Dog Owner

Life with a puppy, while it seems intense at the time, is actually a honeymoon compared to living with an adolescent dog. And it isn’t just your dog, it is all adolescent dogs, a little or a lot, that tend to bring out the worst in their human. There are specific reasons why, and the…

CALVIN’s about town adventure – part 5

So Calvin and I were out and about again. It’s so fun showing him the world, but also seeing everything new through his eyes. I decided that I needed to see how he did in a car that was going faster, as in LONG road trip type speed. It didn’t go so well when we…

the quick fix, the magical pill, the wonder watchamacallit!

When I was working as a Pastry Chef, (by default because I was a Baker), I had this one customer who would come into the restaurant pretty much weekly, and have one of the servers come and ask me if I could ‘whip him up a Grand Mariner Souffle’. My response to the server to…

Cora & Bentley – Riffle Memorial Scholarship recipients

This past year we offered The Riffle Memorial Scholarship. It was to honor a young dog who trained with me several days a week for over a year, with her seriously dedicated owner. She tragically lost her life at fourteen months, and it was like someone had kicked us all in the chest. She was…

Charlies Letter

I met Charlie when he was a young puppy in one of our classes. He was a little nervous, but played like a puppy, and enjoyed working. There was nothing that set of my alarms in terms of ‘puppy gone wrong’. But again, I only saw him one hour a week. After that class I…

my thoughts are my own, and so are my dogs

“I have no desire to make windows into men’s souls.” – from the movie Elizabeth Such a great line, so profound, so direct, and I think of it often. Sometimes, when I am working with a dog that is not straight forward, maybe a bit tricky or tweaky, owners ask me what their dog is…

10 things your pet sitter/walker would like you to know

I just had a lovely coffee date with a pet sitter/walker here in town. My dates are far and few between, so it’s always a welcome hour, or more! It’s fun to talk shop with someone who is on the ‘other side’ of what I do. While I coach people, and work with dogs, in…

the Dandelion, weed or super hero?

In Montana, gardening season is not long if you think in terms of ‘months’, but it is long if you think in terms of ‘day light hours’. From the time the snow melts, the sun gets a bit higher, and the ground softens, you can pretty much find me outside, in the dirt, and loving…