Shared Blog Post – Do Dogs Need to Be Tired to Be Well-Behaved?

Do Dogs Need to Be Tired to Be Well-Behaved? – An excellent article from Risë VanFleet where she emphasizes the need for moderation in our dog’s physical and mental exercise. Exhausting your dog often does not lead to desirable behavior and wellness –

Shared Blog Post – Treat or euthanize? Helping owners make critical decisions regarding pets with behavior problems

In this article from dvm360, Dr. Lore I. Haug, DVM, MS, DACVB, a veterinary behaviorist discusses factors to consider when evaluating a pet with behavioral issues. While written for veterinary and animal behavior professionals, I believe it will also be helpful to people with pets with behavioral issues. You can read the entire article at


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Shared Blog Post – Ear Cropping, Tail Docking, and Debarking

Dogs are born with ears and tails. They should get to keep them. From Karin Brulliard in the September 8th edition of The Washington Post – Why do we intentionally disfigure dogs and by doing so take away tools they use for communication? It is time for this barbaric practice to end. –


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Shared Blog Post – Lawn Chemicals Linked to 2 Types of Cancer in Dogs

This blog post from Paul Ebeling discusses the link between lawn chemicals and cancer in dogs. I recommend you read it if you use lawn chemicals on your lawns or if you take your dog any place where such chemicals are in use. Many states require that commercial applicators post notices that such chemicals have been used; however, in many cases if a property owner applies these chemicals themselves, they may not be required to post a warning. Just be cause a lawn has not been posted does not mean it is free of chemicals or is safe.

Lawn Chemicals Linked to 2 Types of Cancer in Dogs


Nicole Wilde – Can Every Dog Be Rehabilitated?

In this blog post, Canine Behavior Specialist Nicole Wilde discusses whether or not every dog that is rescued can be successfully rehabilitated. Her answer, and one that I agree with, is no.

Aggression cannot always be fixed. It can sometimes be managed, but management is not failsafe and has it’s own risks. It is important to also understand how much these dogs with severe behavioral issues may be suffering.

Sadly, some rescues and shelters seem to feel that every dog can be rehabilitated and as a result rehome dangerous dogs. And yes, I have seen this happen in Maine, often with out-of-state rescues. Never adopt a dog without seeing it first and never adopt a dog unless you have the rescue/shelters return policies in writing.

For Nicole’s blog post in its entirety go to –

Service Dogs – 10 Things That Make a Dog Unsuitable For Service Dog Work

This is from a blog post by Kea Grace, a Certified Professional Dog Trainer that specializes in training working canines. In her post, Grace outlines ten characteristics that would make a dog unsuitable for training and use as a service dog.

In my opinion, this list is one of the reasons why working with an accredited service dog agency to obtain a service dog is so important, as they know what to look for and what to look out for when selecting a dog for service dog work. The fact is, few dogs qualify to be service dogs.  Here Grace’s list. For an explanation of the list, I encourage you to read Grace’s entire post at

  • Structural Imbalances or Issues
  • Genetic Illness
  • Vision or Hearing Problems
  • Unsuitable Size
  • Overweight or Obese
  • Timidity
  • Reactivity
  • Aggression
  • Excessive Drive and/or Energy
  • Aloof, No Desire to Interact or No Focus


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Links We Like – 17JAN16

Links We LikeEvery day we review the internet for pet related posts that we think might be of interest to our clients. Usually, they contain valuable information about pet behavior, training, health or nutrition. Occasionally we find a post that is just simply funny. We save the links to these posts and share them in our email newsletter, on FaceBook and in my blog,,

Gail Fisher’s Dog Tracks: A reminder of the dangers of ‘dominance’ training – This is a great column from my friend and colleague Gail Fisher of Gail Fisher’s All Dogs Gym ​in Manchester, NH. If someone is telling you that you need to be dominant over your dog or be the alpha, I encourage you to read her column. See more at

Dr. Karen Becker on anesthesia-free dental cleaning (also called non-professional dental scaling, or NPDS) for dogs and cats – Dr. Becker explains the benefits of having your veterinarian perform any needed dental procedures on your pet as opposed to a non-professional –

Dr. Karen Becker – Never Make Your Puppy Endure This Cruel Procedure… No Matter What – Dr. Becker discusses the practice of ear cropping for cosmetic purposes. She describes what it entails, the AVMA’s position and why several provinces in Canada have defined cosmetic ear cropping as an unethical practice. –

Dr. Karen Becker – 10 Behaviors That Stress Your Cat Like Crazy… Some May Surprise You – If you live with a cat or interact with cats on a regular basis, I encourage you to read this article. Often the calls and inquiries I get about cats are related to the issues discussed in this article by Dr. Becker.

Factors to Consider Before Getting a Brachycephalic Breeds – Dr. Karen Becker – Owners Relinquishing Popular Purebred Pets in Record Numbers – In this blog post, Dr. Becker talks about the increase in the popularity of dogs and cats with a short-head and a short-muzzle. Some of the more common dog breeds in this category are; Boston Terrier, Boxer, Bulldog, Pekingese, Pug and Shih Tzu. Brachycephalic cat breeds include Himalayans and Persians. As these breeds become more popular, more of them are ending up in shelters looking for a new home. People are surrendering these pets when they discover the frequent health problems, and cost of caring for them. Sadly some breeders are selecting for even more extreme head and muzzle shapes which is increasing health problems. –


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