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behavior

Learning By Doing: Aggression And Practical Solutions

When I was starting a private behavior practice, I had already trained two working dogs for my municipal animal control agency. I knew dogs. I knew training. To broaden the scope of my services, I spent a great deal of time learning about behavior modification.

How To Get Dog Trainers To Recommend Your Salon

Dog trainers are always on the look–out for dog groomers they can recommend to clients. Groomers are part of a necessary professional care team for many dog owners and fill a need that a dog trainer cannot.
Working with a dog trainer is usually a temporary part of an owner’s life, while working with a groomer is a relationship that can extend life–long.

Why Dogs Lose Their Homes

This month’s column isn’t exactly about behavior. It’s about the broader effects of behavior and why I became a trainer and behaviorist. It all started about 35 years ago. I was out of college with no real desire to pursue my chosen profession: architecture.

Rubbing A Dog The Wrong Way

From my experience, dogs have varying sensitivities to human touch. I say this after almost 40 years of handling between 20 and 30,000 dogs. Some dogs don’t like being petted. Some dogs don’t seek physical affection (I owned one for almost 15 years).

Naughty Vs. Normal

My first cattle dog was named Megan. When I met her, she was four months old and on “death row” at my shelter. She was about to be killed because of the heinous offense of chasing livestock—a task she was genetically designed for. Go figure.

Controlling the Chaos

“Michell, I work in a very busy shop with lots of groomers, bathers and dogs. It is fairly chaotic. I work hard to keep my dogs under control and comfortable at all times, but I struggle. I know it is possible because when I watch videos the dogs are calm and they just stand there. I am so tired of wrestling with dogs all day long. I can’t get help from my co-workers because they let the dogs do anything they want. Do you have any advice on how to get my dogs to cooperate?”

Barking Bad

Barking is a problem for just about everyone other than New Zealand shepherds. They use “Huntaway” dogs to drive sheep with incessant barking. I don’t blame the sheep. For most people, incessant barking is a problem. People can be driven from their apartments or condos because their dogs bark incessantly. Shelters have trouble featuring adoptable animals because they cannot hear amid barking dogs in a kennel.

Preparing a Puppy for a Lifetime of Grooming

Through Behavioral Training
Welcoming puppies into the grooming salon is a fun time for new pet parents. It’s exciting for you as a groomer, too, but it can also be a challenge and a headache.

Ivan Pavlov… Ring a Bell?

Pavlov is a name well known in the field of psychology but almost nothing about his work is known. At best, you may know that his most famous experiment was to ring a bell and then give a dog a piece of food. He traced the physiological reflexes associated with food – salivation, reduction in heart rate, etc.

Finding the Right Trainer for Your Clients

Behavior Clips
Many of your clients need training services and ask you to help them find a qualified trainer. Trainers that come to your salon may solicit that kind of recommendation. They will undoubtedly sell themselves in the best light possible – an understandable and normal thing to do. This is where it gets interesting.

Adding Training Services to Your Grooming Menu

Adding training services specifically for the grooming experience is an extremely easy and profitable addition to grooming salons. Simple training services offer benefits for the dogs, their owners, and the grooming staff. Dog trainers and veterinarians are consistently looking to refer clients to salons that are able to offer dogs the benefit of a low-stress experience. Becoming such a salon is easier than it sounds.

From Pack to Play Group

The last 30 years of dog training lore revolves around the connection between wolves and dogs. You can buy 100 books that prattle about dogs being descended from wolves; animals that voluntarily live in groups, called packs. This perspective invariably assumes that dogs are likewise “pack animals”. The underlying implication is that dogs possess the same wolf-like ability to live in harmony with their own kind.

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