fresh start dog training

Resources

Useful links

Dog training organizations:

Learn more about where I was trained:

Adopt a dog:

Recommended stores, books, and products

Retailers:

My favorite place to shop for my dog is Pet Valu. The staff is knowledgeable and helpful, and they sell a great variety of holistic foods and good-for-you treats and toys.

For more training-specific products, I like Clean Run. Their focus is agility products, but they have a great variety of other items too!

Books:

  • The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewsky: an amazing work of fiction for anyone who loves dogs, dog training, or…fiction.
  • Control Unleashed by Leslie McDevitt: a must-read for anyone with a dog who is reactive or loses focus easily, for handlers who want to take their sport dogs to the next level, and for pet dog owners who want more reliable off-leash behavior from their dogs. I use a lot of Leslie's exercises with my clients!

Products:

Toys

I highly recommend a line of products from a company called StarMark.

Their interactive toys, including the Everlasting Fun Ball, Everlasting Treat Ball, and Everlasting Fireplug are a great way to keep busy dogs…busy! Dogs can eat their whole meal out of these toys, which reduces boredom, expends energy, and slows down a dog who wolfs down a meal in three gulps.

Training tools and collars

StarMark also make my favorite kind of clicker. It is comfortable and easy to use, and there is no question where you need to push to make the click. It can be attached to a coil key chain so it hangs around your wrist for easy access.

I strongly recommend that you seek professional assistance if you are going to use a training collar.

There are two kinds of training collars I use with my clients. My preferred brand of metal pinch collar is a Sprenger. I recommend the kind that is NOT quick release, as that mechanism can get in the way of the loosening of the collar after it goes tight. However, if you have arthritis or other issues with the strength of your fingers, you may find it difficult to open and close a regular pinch collar by the prongs.

There is a slightly softer version of a pinch collar, also developed by StarMark, called a Triple Crown Collar. It used to be marketed under the name "Good Dog" collar, so you may also find it in its old packaging with that name. It is the same collar. It is tricky to open and close at first, but gets easier with practice.

A head collar, such as a Gentle Leader or Head Halti, is an option for controlling an unruly dog on leash. They can be found at most pet stores. I also recommend working with a trainer to choose the right brand for your needs, and to acclimate your dog to the head collar.

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