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News: Editors
Canine Brain Training
A romp at the dog park, a run along a trail, a walk around the neighborhood--we know how important it is to get our dogs out and about. But how often do we think about exercising our dog's brain? And really, why should we think about it at all? Recently, I listened to an online seminar offered by Karen Overall, MA, VMD, PhD, DACVB, CAAB, and board certified Applied Animal Behaviorist, that...
News: Karen B. London
Bites to the Face
Human behaviors that precede them
One disadvantage of being a canine behaviorist is that so many human behaviors scare me. My heart leaps into my throat all too often when I see people performing risky behaviors around dogs. From hugging dogs and picking up dogs to sticking their faces right by a dog’s face or bending over a dog, there are plenty of gasp-worthy moments. I see people performing these behaviors and want to scream...
News: Karen B. London
Dogs and Vacuum Cleaners
Variable reactions, similar behavior
Dogs with very different feelings about vacuums can exhibit behavior that is remarkably similar. In the following three videos, all three dogs act somewhat alike, but based on subtle differences, I believe that their emotional reactions to the vacuums are very different. In the first video, the dog exhibits no discomfort around the vacuum. He moves close to it many times, offers a series of play...
Good Dog: Behavior & Training
Making Introductions: Dog-To-Dog
Taking the angst out of canine introductions.
“We put the new dog into our car with our other dog.” “I held each of them by the collar and put them nose-to-nose to meet.” “Our son brought home a stray dog and took her into the back yard with our other dogs. I guess it was too much for an eight-year-old to handle by himself.” When it comes to dog-dog introductions, I’ve heard it all—usually because the introductions have gone badly, very...
News: Editors
Dog Breeders & Puppy Handling
Early tactile input pays off
As our readers know, The Bark is 100 percent in favor of adopting dogs from rescues and shelters. Giving a dog a new life in a home in which he or she is understood, loved and cared for is a giant gift, not only to the dog but also, to ourselves. It's one of those cliched win/win situations: we do something good for a dog and in the process, benefit from the unparalleled companionship that dog...
News: Karen B. London
Not on the Hard Floor
Something soft and cozy, please!
Jack does not like to lie down on any hard surfaces. This dog will be with us all weekend, and since our entire downstairs is uncarpeted, it will be littered with sheepskins, towels and blankets. He likes the sheepskin he is on in the picture the most, but he will choose any soft option over a hard one. I’ve sometimes heard people insist that dogs lie down on a hard floor because of the...
News: Karen B. London
Helping Fearful Dogs Handle Visitors
One simple tip to try
Trouble when visitors arrive is a common concern of many guardians. I get calls every week because people want help with dogs who react badly to anyone who comes to the house. More often than not, these dogs are afraid, but people rarely call to say that they have a fearful dog. They call to tell me that their dogs are barking and lunging, growling, or even biting visitors. Comprehensive...
News: Karen B. London
Socialization Outside the Household
Meeting the dog at home is not enough
One of the obstacles to proper socialization is a misunderstanding of the details of the process. Specifically, many of my clients have told me that they didn’t worry too much about socializing their new puppy because they have another dog at home, and the puppy and that dog get along great. There is an assumption that if a dog can interact properly with one dog, they can interact with all dogs....
News: Karen B. London
Your Dog’s Look
How does it measure up to his looks?
“Your dog has a great look!” I called out to a woman at the park. She looked at me suspiciously and actually asked, “Are you talking to me?” I assured her that I was, though understanding immediately why she questioned me on that point. Her dog was not what most people would consider an attractive dog. He was a bit odd-looking to be honest, with a head that was small in proportion to his body,...
News: Karen B. London
Too Much for a Young Puppy
Overwhelming a dog is not good socialization
There were easily 300 people in the school building that Saturday morning, all milling around and signing their kids up for various after school activities. There was also one very young puppy being carried through the crowd becoming more and more exhausted and increasingly overwhelmed. When I say “very young,” I mean that I suspected that they had just picked up their new Lab puppy within the...

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