Prey Drive Explained

Prey Drive and Predatory Aggression in Dogs Prey drive is one of the most misunderstood components in the dog training world so let’s define a few terms. 1: Prey/play drive 2: Prey/stimulation drive 3: Acquisition drive 4: Predatory aggression 1. Prey/play drive. This is often the drive dog trainers refer to when evaluating the interest level

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Back When Dogs Had Jobs

The traits that once served our dogs now haunt themEach day as I work with reactive and aggressive dogs, I see the direct link between dog breeds and specific issues. If aggression was formed by nurture alone then why do we dog trainers see so many of the same issues in breed groupings? It’s my opinion

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Getting A Puppy Too Young

Getting a puppy too young. When taking home a puppy there’s one thing that you can do that will almost ensure that your dog will have behavioral problems or aggression issues as they grow up. Adopting or purchasing a puppy from a breeder at an age under seven weeks is rarely a great idea. Okay, I

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Alone At The Vet

Covid-19 has changed many things in our society and from the perspective of a dog trainer, one of the biggest things that have changed in the lives of dogs is that most veterinarians will not allow humans to enter the clinic. This means that dogs will go into uncomfortable situations at a vet clinic and they

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Goldens And Doodles

Golden retrievers and doodles suffering from reactivity and aggression issues. As a dog trainer who specializes in working with reactive and aggressive dogs, I see golden retrievers and doodles very commonly. One might suggest that this is because there are such a  large number of these dogs in my area and I think that that is

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Some Doggies Are Not Social Butterfly’s

—Some dogs don’t love being around other dogs and that’s ok.— Likely the most difficult part of my job as a dog trainer is centered around getting some dog owners to realize that they don’t need to have a “dog-park” dog. Some call with very real, attainable expectations like “He’s had some bad experiences around other

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Training Older Dogs With Issues

Does age matter when training a dog with behavioral problems? Age does affect how the training process will look but it doesn’t mean that if you have an older dog they are not capable of changing their ways. This is a common question that we get almost every day and so I wanted to address it

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You Want To Have A Baby But Your Dog Is Nuts

You Want A Baby But Your Dog Is Nuts Six days a week we have dog owners come in asking for help with their dogs. Many of them are coming in because they want to have a baby, just started trying to get pregnant, or they just found out the joyous yet stress-inducing news that a

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Dopamine Addicts

If you have a pit or staffie who has problems, this blog post is for you. Every day I have dog owners contact me with “Pit-esque” dogs who need help. Most of them were recently adopted and brought into Canada from states like Georgia and Florida. The new owners are trying to do their best for

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Why so many German Shepherds are leash reactive

IN YEARS GONE BY, dogs always had a job; Protection, pulling, herding and hunting were the reasons why dogs woke in the morning. In recent times, not so much. Remember this; Dog’s are entrepreneurs, and if you don't give them a job, they will start a business that you will hate. In many cases, that business

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Lexi the German Shepherd

Ted, from Mango Dogs, was a game changer for me when it came to my german shepherd Lexi’s behavior. I would recommend Ted to anyone, any day.  Lexi started becoming very reactive on a leash and reacting poorly to other dogs off leash when she was 1 yr. She would lunge and bark aggressively at people,

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Will correction cause fear or a negative association in dogs?

Will using correction result in a negative association or fear? It makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? Of course, using any type of corrective training tool can be nothing but develop fear. Right? Well not exactly. Whenever using any form of correction, it’s essential that the handler (you) shows your dog what I call the 3 pillars

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Spay and neuter?

Much has changed in the Veterinary world in regards to spaying and neutering in recent years. When I first got a dog about 15 years ago, every Vet that I talked to was 100% firm on spaying and neutering at 6 months of age. More research has been done in this area and the hearts and

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Should you correct your dog for growling?

Should you correct your dog for growling? A question I get frequently and one that’s worth investigating. The answer….drum roll, please…. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. A common sentiment among dog owners, trainers, and most other pet professionals is that you should never correct your dog for growling because if you do, your dog will stop growling

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Is your dog a bank robber?

It’s not uncommon for me to refer to my client’s dogs as bank robbers, so today, let’s unpack what that means. In life, some dogs are honest bankers, and others are bank robbers. Most dogs go threw life without any need to cause much of a ruckus. These are honest bankers. The dogs who wait in

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Socialization basics

Let’s start with some simple terminology A dog fight is serious—The dogs involved have serious intentions to hurt or kill the other dog. A dog argument—Much more common, and they look a lot like a dog fight. Often the dogs are up on their hind legs, and their teeth are smashing together. Plenty of noise, but

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Livestock Guardians

As a dog trainer who trains and specializes in rehabilitating aggressive dogs, I feel the need to sound the alarm on livestock guardian breed dogs. The most common (LGD) we tend to see here in Nova Scotia would be Great Pyrenees, but we also see Anatolian Shepherds and Maremmas. They are beautiful dogs but their size

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Most aggressive dogs are not fearful

When asking thousands of past clients why they think their dog became aggressive, two answers stand out. Often I hear their dog’s behavior changed immediately after being spayed or neutered. More common still, dog owners tell me of their dog became fearful of other dogs after being attacked or getting into a fight. It’s this final

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The fearful puppy

Fear is not the default when a puppy is born. Surely there are dogs who are born with the genetics that make them more prone to becoming fearful but dogs not born fearful. Some dogs are born more skeptical than others, and some more confidence. It’s easy to assume that some dogs are born fearful because

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Codependent dog/human relationships

Yesterday I had a young woman come in asking me to help her with her dog. Her dog had bitten one person and also struggled with some leash reactivity towards others dogs and people. As we dove into a good long chat, a few things quickly became obvious. This young woman had a lot that she

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Is it Nature or Nurture?

Is it nature, is it nurture? The debate has raged for millenniums. How much of dog ownership is a result of the way the dog is raised and how much is the environment in which the dog is trained. Last week I ran into a man who recently adopted a dog and he was so proud

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Preventing dogs bites with kids.

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How NOT to pick a puppy.

As a dog trainer, I meet people every day who if given the following information would have made a drastically different decision before choosing the puppy they chose. The following is a list of things to know before you pick your next puppy. The 5 weekers Every day this week I had lovely people come in

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Is your dog Dominant?

I’m not a scientist claiming to have the definitive answers to the dominance theory, but I might have some thoughts on dominance that I hope will make you think. The dominance question is an extremely polarizing one. Typically you’ll hear dog trainers emphatically proclaim that the dominance theory has been 100% debunked. The other tribe seems

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Even husky’s can walk like a dream!

[cs_content][cs_section parallax="false" style="margin: 0px;padding: 5px 0px;"][cs_row inner_container="true" marginless_columns="false" style="margin: 0px auto;padding: 0px;"][cs_column fade="false" fade_animation="in" fade_animation_offset="45px" fade_duration="750" type="1/1" style="padding: 0px;"][cs_text]As a dog trainer, I often hear owners expressing concern about about specific breeds being able to be trained. For example, I have a beagle and I want to train him off leash, but I heard that's impossible

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Pitbulls are like cars.

Over the last few months, dog enthusiasts have been closely watching the tension in Montreal surrounding a woman being killed by a “Pitbull”. The ruling has now passed to bring in BSL. (Breed Specific Legislation.) The only problem is, the dog who killed that woman was not a Pitbull, or anything close to a Pitbull. A

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5 common myths with dog aggression.

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Walking your dog sucks.

The struggle is real. You clip the leash on your dog’s collar, open the door, and your heart starts to race. You have avoided this walk for the last 2 hours, telling yourself that if you just wait a little while longer, fewer people and dogs will be out for a walk. The alarm goes off.

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How to: Treadmill training your dog.

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Video: Ellie before and after.

Before Ellie came in for training she was a handful to walk! She was not able to be around other dogs, had a host of behaviour problems, and was extremely reactive on the leash. Apart from that, she was a magnificent, loving dog for her amazing owners. Watch as we transform Ellie into a more well-behaved

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Looks can and will be deceiving.

The generalization of fear: Overcompensating aggression. What you are about to read is absolutely not going to be received well in the dog community. It goes against everything most dog trainers and dog professionals have thought and taught for years. Allow me an ear while I unpack a concept that may change the way you think

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Your Vet should be pleased…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoLN3hHmQ-MVideo can’t be loaded because JavaScript is disabled: Your Vet should be pleased. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoLN3hHmQ-M)

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Let dogs be dogs!

Wouldn’t it be great if you could allow your dog off leash to enjoy nature with the assurance that your dog will be responsive 100 percent of the time? We can help you achieve your goals. https://youtu.be/K1c5GUc2KF4Video can’t be loaded because JavaScript is disabled: Let dogs be dogs! (https://youtu.be/K1c5GUc2KF4)

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