The best in health, wellness, and positive training from America’s leading dog experts

Dogs with Jobs

Productive Ways to Train Your Dog

Life with any dog has its moments of agony and ecstasy. The ecstasy happens when our dogs' behaviors are top notch, and all systems seem to run smoothly. The agony happens when our dogs have an oops" moment

Dog Certifications and Titles

My friend has super fast dogs, and they compete in agility. I always imagined that the magnets on the back of her vehicle indicated just how fast they could run: MACH speeds! And C-ATCH: Catch me if you can! Obviously my Border Collie, Duncan, and I didn't get far enough in our brief agility career to earn any titles (he preferred to make up his own courses). But when my curiosity got the better of me and I looked into what, exactly, those letters on my friend's car actually meant, I quickly learned that there are countless titles and certifications that can be bestowed upon our canine companions.

Artificial Needs: Service-Dog Imposters Abound

An immaculately groomed Australian Shepherd sitting at his owner’s feet in an airplane’s bulkhead row. A yappy Malti-Poo in a shopping-cart seat at Target. A furiously wagging Lab-mix in line at the bank. If all three of these fictional Fidos were wearing vests that read “Service Dog,” you wouldn’t give them a second thought. Or would you?

K9 Drill and Demo Teams

What brings together heelwork, tricks, music, a little high school nostalgia, and takes it all to a whole new level? K9 drill, display, and demonstration teams are not new, but as more of us are looking for different ways to showcase the rewards of positive training to the larger dog community, the concept of drill and demo teams is gathering steam. The term “drill team” may evoke images of military marching routines (historically, military drill teams did occasionally include dogs), but today’s K9 drill and demo teams take many forms that involve dog/handler pairs. “I define it as a group of dog/handler teams, moving in unison to create a changing picture of shapes and lines, with or without music,” says Doris Herber, a retired dog trainer and behavior consultant who participated for several years in a drill team with her Basenji, Kodi.

Working on a K9 Drill and Demo Team: An Incredible Socialization Opportunity

When I began working on this article, I asked the members from the Santa Cruz Dog Training Club (the team I participate with) what they valued about being part of a demo team. Their answers varied, but one universal theme rose from the group as a whole: Being part of the team was an incredible socialization opportunity for all of our dogs.

Training Police Dogs and Military Dogs Using Positive Methods

both for law enforcement and civilian trainers.üStaff Sgt. William Riney uses a toy and a game of tug to reward his military dog for detecting narcotics around vehicles on the grounds of Lackland Air Force Base
Pet oxygen masks secure tightly to a dog or cats face, and allow first responders to provide CPR.

Organization Facilitates Donations of Pet Oxygen Masks

House fires are devastating and life-threatening for everyone in the family – including the pets. It’s estimated that half a million pets are affected by fires each year and more than 40,000 die from smoke inhalation. Emergency first responders can provide oxygen to a fading animal, but they usually face the challenge of working with a human oxygen mask, which is difficult to securely fit over a dog or cat’s face.

Dog Carting and Draft Training

What do you envision when someone says “draft work“? What probably comes to mind are horses, mules, oxen, and other large “beasts of burden.” Think again. Since the 18th and 19th centuries, dogs have assisted humans by hauling wagons and carts across fields and through towns. Dogs have delivered milk and mail, hauled the day’s catch of fish from boat to town, and even hauled lumber in lumber camps. This heritage forms the basis upon which the sport of carting was built by a variety of breed clubs. Between the 1970s and 1990s interest in the sport grew; the St. Bernard folks offered their first competition in 1988, and Bernese Mountain Dog fans added theirs in 1991. The natural inclination of dogs to pull has been literally harnessed by a variety of people through the years. Put backward pressure on a leash and collar, and most dogs will pull forward. Take that “opposition reflex” and a nice, padded harness, and you can see where this is going. Forward, of course! Sledding. Weight pulling. Sulky driving. Skijoring. Carting. Some of these activities are still used to help humans with important tasks. Sled dogs have delivered critical medicines in the dead of winter. Service dogs pull wheelchairs. And some dogs show off their carting skills during public demonstrations and therapy dog visits. This sport has a very practical aspect to it. If you are creative, I’m sure there are tasks around home that you can find for your carting dog.

The Canine Sense of Smell

however.üIt can be a sign of immune problems if a dog's nose is normally black

Service Dogs In National Parks

As one of the first people to hike in a national park with a service dog, I was very aware that Trigger and I had the responsibility to set a good example and to educate people about service dogs in national parks. Often when we stepped off the trail for a break or to let people pass, we got questions and I always took the time to answer them as accurately as possible. A lot of questions were about service dogs...

Dog Training Camp Programs

Camping means different things to different people, but to dogs, camping means fun! Like most things with the word camp" in them

Latest Blog

Nobody’s Perfect! Least of All Me!

I strive to be a good dog—I mean, a good dog owner. But recently, I was stuck between being a responsible dog owner and being responsible for my dogs’ well being, and I broke a leash law in order to protect my dogs. And I got yelled at, a couple of times.