Before we get to the free resources…
When you work with me some of the benefits are:
- I help you determine WHY your dog behaves the way they do (this determines how we proceed)
- I help you set realistic goals based on your dog’s history
- I may make safety & management recommendations based on your unique situation
- I help you prioritize what changes to make or skills to work on in order to reach your goals for your dog’s behavior
- I demonstrate relevant exercises with your dog
- I coach you in real time on the skills needed for the human end of the leash
- I help you create a plan that works best for your unique situation and lifestyle
- I support you in your efforts with your dog
I can coach you one on one at private sessions in your home, but if that isn’t in your budget (CARE center may be able to help low income households on a limited basis) or you just want to see some examples of the type of work we might do together, I’ve put together some resources below.
Keep in mind that there is always room for creativity in dog training and behavior, there is no “one size fits all”. If you are dealing with a serious dog behavior issue such as over arousal, anxiety, fear, or aggression, please contact your veterinarian and reach out to me. While not all vets are well versed in behavior, many certainly are, and many unwanted behaviors have underlying medical causes – changes in behavior always warrant a thorough veterinary exam!
Here are some resources that I frequently refer people to:
Petting Consent Tests Video Most dogs like being pet sometimes but not always.
Dog Body Language Video Your dog is talking with their body, are you listening?
The Most Important Dog Training Advice Catch your dog being good to prevent unwanted behaviors
Tips For Avoiding a Behaviorist Prevent problems before they start
Free Online Dog Breed Group Determination Humans selectively bred dogs for specific jobs, your dog’s breed or breed group affects their behavior
Humane Dog Training (view & download pdf) American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior position statement on humane training
How To Choose A Trainer (view & download pdf) American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior guide – the dog training and behavior industry is unregulated, so anyone can call themselves a trainer or behaviorist regardless of education and experience. Be an informed consumer.
Lili Chin Infographics on Dog Body Language and Training Skills Fun, free, easy to understand illustrations of important concepts
Dominance (view & download pdf) American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior position statement on dominance (Dominance theory has been debunked, and is an outdated potentially harmful method of dog training)
Puppy Socialization (view & download pdf)American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior position statement on puppy socialization (for behavioral health provide medically safe, pleasant exposures to things your puppy will encounter as an adult before they are fully vaccinated)
Least Intrusive Minimally Aversive Methods Susan Friedman says behavior is “the study of one”, there is no one size fits all for dog training and behavior. It is crucial to allow natural behavior, avoid aversive methods as much as possible, and understand what motivates each unique dog (and their handler!) when working towards any training or behavior goals
Humane Hierarchy “it works” isn’t enough to justify using a dog training method, methods should work AND be the most humane option. There are tons of methods that work, but some have serious risks of fallout while others do not.
Risks of Punishment Punishment can certainly be effective – however there are other effective methods that can be used without the risks.
Kikopup YouTube Channel A wonderful free resource – I especially love her capturing calmness video and positive interrupter video.
Grisha Stewart Online School A great resource for basic manners training, dogs who can be reactive on leash, and so much more. If you use this link, 20% of your purchase fee goes to the Champaign County Humane Society. I recommend the Diamond Membership ($30/month gets you access to everything in her huge library of courses, e-books, and webinars)
Teach Your Dog To Drop video
Teach Your Dog To Stay video
Fading The Food Lure video
“It’s Yer Choice” video (an alternative to “leave it”, an impulse control game)
Loose Leash Walking Video: Please note that for most situations it is unnecessary to ask a dog to maintain position at your side (heel) for the entire walk. Heel is an important skill to teach, but it is not natural dog behavior. For their behavioral health it is best to allow your dog to sniff and explore as long as the leash is loose and it is safe and appropriate to do so. This video shows several techniques to gently and effectively teach your dog to walk by your side on cue as needed/desired for safety, etiquette, etc. Have a cue that starts the behavior (commonly “let’s go” or “heel”) and one that lets your dog know the behavior is over (commonly “okay” or “free”)
Polite Greetings (greet humans without jumping up)
Ken Ramirez Consent to Paw Tactile (teach your dog to cooperate for nail trims)
Laura Monaco Torelli Consent To Blood Draw (teach your dog to cooperate for veterinary care)
Counterconditioning and Desensitization: to address “big feelings” such as overexcitement, fear, frustration, anxiety, aggression
Engage Disengage Game Article a simple game to effectively counter condition and desensitize
Engage/disengage infographic from Alice’s website (view & download pdf)
Look At That a simple game to effectively counter condition
CareForReactiveDogs.com a great free resource for dogs who can be reactive (flee, charge, bark, lunge, etc.) on leash
Resource Guarding Dog To Human Patrica McConnell blog post on dogs who guard items/locations/individuals from humans
Resource Guarding Dog To Dog Patrica McConnell blog post on dogs who guard items/locations/individuals from other dogs
Separation Anxiety Moira Hechenleitner’s resource page
Your Options If Your Dog Displays Aggression In this article Anthony De Marinis walks you through your choices when you are dealing with aggressive behavior
Teach your dog to love wearing a comfortable basket muzzle Despite the stigma, muzzles can be great humane management tools especially for dogs with bite histories
Introducing dogs to dogs a free ASPCA pro webinar