Podcast: Talking Training with Dr. Patrick Mahaney

The many theories on pet training can be confusing - even overwhelming. What’s the right (or wrong) way to train? What’s effective and what’s safe? The trainers all have their own opinions, and plenty of know-it-alls are willing to share their thoughts too, but have you ever thought to ask your vet about it?

Dr. Patrick Mahaney joins us for this month’s podcast on pet training, talking about:

  • Safe and effective training methods and what should be avoided
  • When more training or tools may be necessary
  • Board and train facilities
  • Cat training and when it might be useful

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Podcast: Winter Dangers

While the temperatures have been pretty warm for fall here, our weather people are calling for a La Nina for the 2016-2017 winter, bringing more snow and maybe cooler temps than average. With that on our minds, we got a few questions ready for Dr. Patrick Mahaney about what we might expect and how to best prepare for the coming holiday and winter months.

  • How does La Nina affect pets?
  • What does our vet want us to know about road tripping with pets?
  • How can we make holiday visits easier on our pets?
  • Are there any new trends in winter health issues in pets?
  • What cool new products or toys does our cat or dog want for Christmas?

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Special needs - or just special?

BrutusIf you’ve payed attention to any of my prior posts, you’ll see I’m a pushover for “different” pets, or those with special needs. Tripedal cats and dogs, those with vision impairment, deaf animals, motor-issues...all of it. We all have our quirks, and I just love seeing how pets move forward as though nothing is different or wrong. We could learn a lot from them about how to live and be our best selves.

It turns out I’m not the only one that finds these pets a bit inspiring. In shelters, anything that made a pet a little “different” could be the thing that gets them adopted. Polydactyl cats and three-legged dogs were usually adopted quite quickly. While some special needs take a special pet parent, there’s usually a person out there looking to connect with a pet that has these unique issues. Differently-abled animals are even finding their way into the spotlight. (Remember, “Champion” on Parks and Rec, played by Lucy the 3-legged Pit Bull?)

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Training With Treats - Is It the Best Choice?

Training with TreatsJust to be clear, I am not a dog trainer, but I am a keen observer and see the consequences of training daily. I see the good and I see the bad.

In recent years, many dog training have adopted new philosophies and techniques. In the past, it was commonplace to see the, unfortunately misnamed, “choker” correction collars, pronged collars, and shock collars. Personally, I still see a place for the correction collars in a balanced method if they are used properly. However, I am not a fan of pronged collars and, in my opinion, there is absolutely no situation that justifies the use of a shock collar. Shock collars are not training collars. I have seen so many dogs become uncontrollably fearful and anxious due to shock collars.

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Avalanche Dogs

Well, we had a great fall after a scorching summer, but eventually we had to have a winter.  I have written in the past about winter time hazards, and how to keep your pet happy and healthy during the winter months.  But, despite how I may sound in  my gloomy, cautionary posts,  I actually love winter.  I love to ski, especially in Deer Valley Utah.  It is beautiful!  The sky is a blue that everyone needs to experience.  

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