Feeding Your Dog: Help him Thrive & Learn

Controlling resources can help you make household rules clear for your dogs. Control the resources and you don’t have to control the dog. The easiest way to start training is to provide things a dog wants to reinforce the choices he makes. Feeding your dog involves providing an important resource for your dog; one that […]


Playing with you, his owner, is different from any other activity your dog engages in.  It’s not like playing with toys by himself or playing with other dogs.  It’s not like doing training exercises with you, earning treats – those exercises are important, but different.   It’s simple to play with your dog, but so important […]

Basic Training Skills: Start at the Beginning

Your own basic training skills are the foundation of everything you want to train your dog to do. “Advanced training is simply the precise application of the fundamentals.” — Dr. Robert E. Bailey Really? That’s all there is to it? To highly skilled trainers, the statement above is a reminder that the most basic training […]

Leash Skills Series #7: Limitations of “Be a Tree”

What is “Be a Tree”? You’ve probably heard of the “Be a Tree” technique, where you stop when your dog reaches the end of the leash.  Some people suggest you turn and go the other way when your dog gets to the end of the leash.  Both of these techniques result in the dog feeling […]

Leash Skills Series #6: Training with Treats – Treats are training tools!

Why training with treats is ideal Tiny, kibble-sized, super-tasty treats are the best training tools around. Training with treats means using your own basic training skills, keeping the leash loose yourself, and getting your dog to volunteer to do what you want. First, commit to keeping the leash loose yourself. Practice your own leash skills […]

Leash Skills Series #5: Why a Loose Leash?

Are you walking a dog or flying a kite? What guides your dog when the two of you are walking? Is it the leash itself? Or on the other hand, does your dog watch you to see where you go, with a loose leash between you? Some dogs and owners use a tight leash as […]

Leash Skills Series #4: Starting Leash Training

Make a plan to start leash training Stand in the living room with your treat bag on and a leash in your hand. Decide which side you want your dog to walk on, and make your commitment to sticking to the rules you’re creating for your leash walks.  Do this while your dog is occupied […]

Leash Skills Series #3: Leash Training Teamwork

Both the human and the dog need leash training skills for walks to be enjoyable. Train the necessary skills by breaking them down into simple, specific behaviors. Make your daily walks fun for both of you! Dog Leash Skills A dog should love his collar, harness, and leash If the equipment itself causes a dog […]

Leash Skills Series #2: Defining Leash Walking

Toby, observing the world and collecting his thoughts

Dogs learn best through positive reinforcement Behavior science has documented that dogs learn best through positive reinforcement. Use positive reinforcement to teach leash walking skills. The result will be a dog who curiously tries to do what will get him rewards. He’ll readily pay attention to you – the human at the end of the […]

Leash Skills Series #1: Walking a dog

What’s your vision of walking a dog? One joyous vision of having a dog is going for long walks in the beauty of the outdoors with a beloved canine companion, enjoying the sights and smells of the world, and becoming more closely bonded as partners.  This can occur only if both human and dog have […]

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