Canine News You Can Use

5 Things You Should Know About Positive Reinforcement

5 Things You Should Know About Positive Reinforcement

Most likely you have heard of the term “positive reinforcement.” In some cases, it is used only as marketing jargon, and in many cases, it brings “give your dog a treat” to mind. In training your dog, though, it should have a clear and consistent meaning. Let’s take a look…

Do you punish your dog? If so, how? If not, why not?

Do you punish your dog? If so, how? If not, why not?

If your dog has absolutely no behavior problems, read no further. This article will be of little interest to you. But if your dog jumps on people, barks, growls, bolts out of an open door, steals food off of a counter, paws at you, etc., etc., read on. There may be some valuable information for you here.

Be Prepared… It’s not just for Boy Scouts

Be Prepared… It’s not just for Boy Scouts

The #1 Golden Rule at Blue Bridge Dog Training is “You are your dog’s protector,” against other dogs, against people, against cars, against cold and heat, and whatever else might harm your dog. This is a big responsibility for us and for any...

Doggie wasteland… Do you need a sign like this in your yard?

Doggie wasteland… Do you need a sign like this in your yard?

“Doggie wasteland, it’s only doggie wasteland…” OK, so I took a little creative license from a 1970’s song (Baba O’Riley) by a rock band named The Who. Now that you may have the melody stuck in your head with my new lyrics, let’s talk about...

Oh No! A Dog Food Recall!

Oh No! A Dog Food Recall!

If you are old enough, you might remember the TV show "Lost In Space." There was a robot on the show that would warn the space travelers of dangerous situations that crossed their path (like that scary looking fellow in the photo). We do not get a robot warning, but we might find out that the dog food we purchase has a problem. And even the best dog food manufacturers can find themselves having to issue a recall notice.

PSA: Beware the Counterfeit Collar

PSA: Beware the Counterfeit Collar

Know the real thing to spot the fake.

Our Board & Train Programs... How exactly does that work?

Our Board & Train Programs... How exactly does that work?

I sometimes get asked about what happens during a board and train program. This should give you a pretty good idea of how the programs work, and what we do to make it successful.

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 4: Just the Facts, Ma’am)

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 4: Just the Facts, Ma’am)

This has been quite the journey, looking for answers to the question, “Are Pit Bulls adorable angels or deadly devils?” Let me say at the outset that as a professional dog trainer, I have tried to remain...

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 3: If Looks Could Kill)

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 3: If Looks Could Kill)

I covered a lot of ground in Part 2, with the main takeaway being that the term, “Pit Bull” really refers to the American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT), a dog bred for...

Teach Your Dog How To Swim In 3 Easy Steps

Teach Your Dog How To Swim In 3 Easy Steps

Does your dog know how to swim? If not, you may want to consider teaching your buddy just how easy it is. Why? It’s great exercise, it’s a bonding experience for...

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 2: It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a Pit Bull?)

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 2: It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a Pit Bull?)

I mentioned the term “Pit Bull” 20 times in Part 1. When there is a dog attack reported in the news, and you have not read the article or seen the newscast, I’m pretty sure “Pit Bull” immediately comes...

Emmy Lou’s Transformation: The story of one dog, one family, and their journey to a peaceful home

Emmy Lou’s Transformation: The story of one dog, one family, and their journey to a peaceful home

In some of our dog training "projects," like this one, we have to be a little creative in our approach. In addition to obedience training, we used ...

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 1: Introduction)

Pit Bulls: Adorable Angels or Deadly Devils? (Part 1: Introduction)

If you have ever seen a YouTube video of a real dog attack on a person or another dog, it is vicious, relentless, horrifying, gory, and sometimes deadly. Certainly dog attacks are not limited to "Pit Bulls," but these dog-types (it is a category, not a recognized breed) seem to be in the news most often. But there are many in shelters, and people frequently adopt/rescue pit bulls without them turning into killing machines.

The Power of Vision

The Power of Vision

Although they are important, I am not talking about your vision or your dog’s vision. I am writing about my vision, so to speak. Not the fact that...

All Dogs Can Bite

All Dogs Can Bite

This is a really important topic, and one that only seems to get attention when it makes...

What is a certified dog trainer, and do I need one?

What is a certified dog trainer, and do I need one?

There are certifications for public accountants, personal trainers, mechanics, computer technology folks, and yes, there are also...

Service Dog Facts for the General Public and Businesses

Service Dog Facts for the General Public and Businesses

You may be considering having your dog trained as a service dog. You may have seen someone with a dog wearing a service dog vest outside or...

5 Plants That Might Be Harmful To Rover (some might surprise you)

5 Plants That Might Be Harmful To Rover (some might surprise you)

You probably know about the danger that lilies, azaleas, and onions can pose to our dogs. They are toxic to varying degrees. But...

5 Ways to Build the Relationship with Your Dog

5 Ways to Build the Relationship with Your Dog

Most dog owners want to have an amazing relationship with their dog. You know, he follows you like a shadow, or silently lays at your feet for hours while you...

I just got a puppy! When do I start puppy training?

I just got a puppy! When do I start puppy training?

This is a very common question that comes up, with good news and bad news. The bad news is that if you have waited for the "magical 6 months" to start, you have waited 6 months too...

Private Lessons or Board & Train: Which One Is Right For You?

Private Lessons or Board & Train: Which One Is Right For You?

Your dog sits only when you have a treat, but when the treat is gone, so is the sit. He hears you when you call him, but he glances back at you with what looks like a smirk and continues on his way. You open the front door and he bolts like...

What Do I Do If My Dog Has Separation Anxiety?

What Do I Do If My Dog Has Separation Anxiety?

Question: I adopted my dog, who I think is a little over a year old, from a shelter two months ago, and...

Why Won't My Dog Sleep In My Bed Anymore?

Why Won't My Dog Sleep In My Bed Anymore?

Question: My almost 12-year-old Dachshund mix has been sleeping in my bed his entire life, along with my cat, but about six months ago he started jumping off the bed whenever I got in to go to sleep, and...

How To Keep Your Dog From Pawing

How To Keep Your Dog From Pawing

Question... My 3-year-old lab constantly paws at me. He's always been ultra-needy, but it seems...

5 Ways To Practice Down-Stay In Everyday Situations

5 Ways To Practice Down-Stay In Everyday Situations

Obedience training for your dog does not have to be stiff and regimented. Maybe somewhat so in the beginning stages of learning, but once your dog has...

Dog Parks: Are You A Fan?

I’m not, well sort of not. The main reason is that you don’t know the environment you’re stepping into once you walk through the...

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part IV)

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part IV)

Sometimes reviewing is important, so I think that’s where we should start. In Part I we looked at bad reasons and one good reason to...

Why Do I Need To Train My Dog? And How?

Those are great questions! Let me give you just a few reasons, then some suggestions. First, dogs love structure and...

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part III)

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part III)

A ham and eggs breakfast tells you all you need to know to determine if you are ready for a rescue/adoption. Are you...

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part II)

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part II)

In Part I, I left you with this thought – a good reason to adopt/rescue a dog: “I love dogs and I am totally committed (and able) in every way to give my adopted/rescued dog the...

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part I)

Adopting or Rescuing A Dog: Tips On How To Avoid Problems And Future Re-Abandonment (Part I)

Adopting or rescuing a dog. Sounds wonderful, noble, and just a good thing to do. Everyone who “adopts or rescues” a dog does it with good intentions, and that is wonderful and...

Five Star Dog Foods You May Want To Consider (and that you have heard of)

The Dog Food Advisor (dogfoodadvisor.com) has a lot of information about the quality of dog foods. They do not test...

How Do You Build The Relationship With Your Dog?

Most dog owners want to have an amazing relationship with their dog. You know, he follows you like a shadow, or silently lays at your feet for hours while you...

The Wild Ride: Chicago to Chattanooga

Well, we finally made it to Chattanooga and we're open for business! Still on the hunt for a permanent location from which to operate, but private lessons are currently available..

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