Mark's Dog Blog

I like to simplify things as much as possible when I am with clients to help them understand their dog better. One of the major hurdles most dog owners have when working through modifying behaviour is remaining consistent, and this means 'forever'. When working on modifying a dogs behaviour, it's never just about the dog. A dogs relationship with i...
It doesn't surprise me the emotive backlash I received from a 'few' dog owners in regards to my Facebook post , that a major part of the problem in regards to people humanising dogs and therefore the continuing rise in dog bites, dog attacks and aggression, is what is now termed by many in the industry, the ' furbaby syndrome ', the humanising of d...
I don't mind people visiting to my Facebook page and disagreeing with my professional views, as everyone has a right to an opinion. What surprises me is how many become emotionally unhinged, just because a 'professional' has rocked their core beliefs, beliefs that they have become so overly emotionally attached too. The only counter many of them ha...
"Your dog does not love you!" That is the number one comment I make that surprises many of my clients, and many even become upset that I would even suggest such a thing about their dog. When I am with clients where I can see that they are allowing emotions to affect their relationship with their dog, and therefore clouding their judgement, I explai...
One of the most difficult concepts for many of my clients to fully accept, when they have called me out for dogs that are highly strung, hyper-aroused, or suffer anxiety issues, is to cut back on the amount of affection they are giving to their dog, and when they are giving it. Some dog owners have an overly emotional attachment to their dog, that ...
Psychotropic medication should ALWAYS be a last resort.. Not the first go-to option that is now becoming so popular with Vet Behaviourists. The medical quick fix for behavioural issues at the expense of our dogs overall well being is at epidemic levels. The administering of drugs to do nothing more than mask issues such as for unwanted behaviours h...
I am angry..Yes angry, for 2 reasons. A beautiful GSD, forced onto psychotropic medication, and mainly due to a training methodology that wasn't offering him any guidance, discipline or structure around the home. Please note, I am in no way blaming my client. And neither should you! He loves his dog, and was doing everything he thought was right fo...
I raise this subject quite often, because it is so important to understand. Dogs are not consciously aware of their current emotional state, and therefore have no way to consciously moderate or control their emotions. I'll try and explain in this article. What happens when we are anxious because we are running late for an important appointment, and...
I am becoming very bored with the statement, " we don't need to use violence to train a dog " The positive-only and force-free (PO/FF) groups say that their training follows the principles of canine behaviour, and that all dogs are instinctively looking to please us, so there is no need to use 'violence'. The term 'violence' in dog training an...
Consistency is the biggest hurdle for most dog owners when it comes to being successful at training their dog or modifying its behaviour. It's not a question of "how long will it take for my dog to learn?" It's how many repetitions will it take. The more repetitions a method takes, the less likely we will maintain consistency for the extended perio...
KISS I am one that believes in keeping things simple, and easy to understand. Dog training and behaviour, due to so much scientific research has become so complicated due to so many scientific terms for every single action and reaction. KISS ( k eep i t s imple s tupid), and explaining it in terms that everyone understands and can picture in their ...
My previous article titled " Dog trainers selling snake oil " had me thinking a lot about other areas I feel unsuspecting dog owners are being sold the dreaded snake oil. I also know that that article didn't go down well with a lot of dog trainers, so I am sure this one will have the same effect. So be it. I have been around long enough to know wha...
Your dog is not a robot! Reliable does not mean guaranteed!   No matter what you are training your dog to do, and no matter what training methodology or tool you subscribe to, there is no such thing as a 100% fully trained dog.   For example, any trainer that informs you that once he or she has trained your dog that they can guarantee you...
Anxiety paired with frustration are the major triggers for leash aggressive dogs. If you have a reactive dog, then it is more than likely he is a lead puller, that is intensely focused on everything else but YOU. Walking the anxious dog Anxiety------> held back on leash------> triggers opposition reflex response------> triggers frustration...
Dog owners need to stop listening to all the rubbish. Behaviours need consequences, and especially for aggression. All this rubbish that using counter-conditioning techniques, redirecting on to a treat, or keeping the dog below threshold , will stop extreme cases of aggression, is lunacy. Keeping a dog below threshold so that the aggressive respons...
If you don't subscribe to the theory that behaviours should have predictable consequences (especially unacceptable behaviours), then how can you be sure your dog will make the right choices that ensure a harmonious and well-balanced relationship, or indeed one that is even safe? You can't! A dog left to itself will always choose behaviours that are...
Whenever I go into a client's home, I never go in with a preconceived notion that I am going to use a particular method or tool.  My number one focus is to first understand the underlying cause for the behavioural issue, and what the triggers are. Important in this observation is what type of relationship the owner has with their dog and then ...
When a dog trainer advertises them self as a rewards based trainer, what they are indicating is that they use positive reinforcement to mark appropriate behaviours. There is not one training method that is not rewards based, whether you are a positive-only trainer, a force-free trainer, or have a more balanced philosophy about training. It doesn't ...
It shouldn't, but it still astounds me how many homes I go into whereby the family were brainwashed in to an emotive based ideology at their puppy preschool, that has led them to becoming totally frustrated dog owners, and therefore in many cases influencing their actions.   Don't get me wrong, I am not talking about teaching a puppy basic com...
This is by no means is an exhaustive list on how to raise your puppy. The pointers below are ones that I feel are very important, to ensure your pup does mature into a calm well behaved and well balanced dog. The most important period of your pups life is the first 16 to 18 weeks. This is when we set the foundation for your dogs future life with yo...

Latest Blogs

25 September 2018
Many ask why are a lot of my posts about punishment? Well, isn't that the major issue we have now in regards to raising our dogs correctly, not understanding the appropriate application & the misrepresentation of "positive punishment" and "negati...
802 Hits
08 July 2018
I like to simplify things as much as possible when I am with clients to help them understand their dog better. One of the major hurdles most dog owners have when working through modifying behaviour is remaining consistent, and this means 'forever'.Wh...
1378 Hits
11 January 2018
It doesn't surprise me the emotive backlash I received from a 'few' dog owners in regards to my Facebook post, that a major part of the problem in regards to people humanising dogs and therefore the continuing rise in dog bites, dog attacks and aggre...
4132 Hits
01 January 2018
I don't mind people visiting to my Facebook page and disagreeing with my professional views, as everyone has a right to an opinion. What surprises me is how many become emotionally unhinged, just because a 'professional' has rocked their core beliefs...
1842 Hits
31 December 2017
"Your dog does not love you!"That is the number one comment I make that surprises many of my clients, and many even become upset that I would even suggest such a thing about their dog. When I am with clients where I can see that they are allowing emo...
2107 Hits
10 December 2017
One of the most difficult concepts for many of my clients to fully accept, when they have called me out for dogs that are highly strung, hyper-aroused, or suffer anxiety issues, is to cut back on the amount of affection they are giving to their dog, ...
3382 Hits
03 December 2017
Psychotropic medication should ALWAYS be a last resort.. Not the first go-to option that is now becoming so popular with Vet Behaviourists.The medical quick fix for behavioural issues at the expense of our dogs overall well being is at epidemic level...
2626 Hits
02 December 2017
I am angry..Yes angry, for 2 reasons. A beautiful GSD, forced onto psychotropic medication, and mainly due to a training methodology that wasn't offering him any guidance, discipline or structure around the home. Please note, I am in no way blaming m...
2490 Hits