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Blog: Karen B. London
An Autographed Copy of Speaking For Spot
It’s a great gift.
Every year about this time I start to hyperventilate at the thought of the holiday shopping that still remains. No matter how early I start (even the previous December!), I never seem to have it done as soon as I’d like. This year, I’ve got a little help. Nancy Kay, the author of Speaking For Spot: Be the Advocate Your Dog Needs to Live a Happy, Healthy, Longer Life, has a great idea. She will...
Blog: Karen B. London
Salmon Poisoning Affects Dogs
Life-threatening illness requires treatment.
Salmon poisoning is a rare but serious condition in dogs. If not treated, around 90 percent of the dogs with this malady will not survive it. The cause of the disease is a bacteria that lives within a fluke that is a parasite of fish. Dogs ingest the fluke parasite and the bacteria inside it when they eat raw fish. The life cycle of the parasite involves both fish and snail hosts. Salmon...
Blog: Karen B. London
Why Do You Love Your Pets?
Share your answer with the Texas SPCA.
If you love your dogs so much that you can hardly stop yourself from shouting it from the rooftops, then you are not alone. (Unless you really ARE by yourself on top of your house proclaiming your feelings for them. In that case technically you are alone, but that’s not really the point here.) We humans love our pets so much that it’s easy to go crazy expressing our views. In recognition of the...
Blog: Karen B. London
Dog Drool
You gotta love it.
Yesterday, I was listening to one of the Harry Potter books on CD as a way to motivate myself to clean my house. (It’s a losing battle, but I remain ever hopeful!) Anyway, what really caught my attention were the scenes with Hagrid’s dog Fang. I found it so amusing that the author always has Fang choose to be near Harry and to drool all over him. Harry never seems too thrilled, but accepts it as...
Blog: Karen B. London
Got Leash?
Safely passing it requires care.
Leashes only function if one end is connected to the dog’s collar and a person is holding the other end. Over the weekend, I saw a dog running free (and fast!) trailing the leash with two people running after him. In an attempt to pass the leash, the first person had let go before the second person got a good grip on it, and the dog capitalized on this mistake. I helped them collect their dog...
Dog's Life: Humane
Heart to Heart with Frank Ascione, PhD
Academia and humane interests converge at University of Denver
Frank Ascione, PhD, is the first professor to serve as the new American Humane Endowed Chair and executive director of the Institute for Human-Animal Connection in the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver (DU). This position is significant because it is a collaboration between a major academic institution and a major animal welfare agency—the American Humane Association—made...
Blog: Karen B. London
Protecting Dogs on Halloween
Beware of chocolate, decorations and costumed strangers.
Halloween is a devil of a holiday. One the one hand, it’s among my favorites—parties, chocolate, creativity in dress and behavior, neighbors working together to create fun for all ages. On the other hand, there are hazards we all need to be aware of to make sure our dogs have a good day, too. There are three main concerns for dogs at Halloween.  1) Chocolate is dangerous for dogs. Don’t let them...
Blog: Karen B. London
Teaching My Dog To Stay
I did it for the ice cream.
Well-trained dogs are a joy to be around and they are more likely to stay safe. Additionally, they often have a better quality of life due to the fact that they get to accompany people to more events since their behavior is trustworthy. These are all worthy reasons to train our dogs, but I must say I am often just as motivated by my own quality of life. Specifically, I needed my dog to have a...
Blog: Karen B. London
Dog Halloween Costumes
Scary for our four-legged friends
It’s hard to resist the urge to put dogs in costumes. The cuteness factor can fly off the charts, and for many people, dressing up our dogs is as natural as dressing up our human children. Despite my recognition of the joy it can bring to see our pups parading around as cowgirls, devils, sports stars or Elvis, I urge caution when considering costumes for dogs. Most dogs hate costumes. They easily...
Blog: Karen B. London
Reinforcement on the Radio
What will NPR do this time?
Each time KNAU, my local NPR station, has a pledge drive, they try a new combination of reinforcement strategies. As a dog trainer, I am naturally very interested in reinforcement since half of operant conditioning consists of reinforcement. (The other half is punishment, but thankfully, positive punishment is used in dog training less than ever, and never, as far as I know, by any NPR stations...

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