Category: Author Annie

How Can I Stop My Dog’s Inappropriate Peeing?

I recently received a question from a reader: My 16-month-old Standard Poodle, Ellie, has a problem. She is a certified therapy dog who has worked in nursing homes and also works with children in a reading program at a local library. With that said, Ellie piddles when my daughter (who happens to be a vet tech)… Read more »

What Do Good Dentists and Good Trainers Have in Common?

 A good dentist makes me feel safe and keeps his word that he will not cause pain — and that’s exactly how a good trainer teaches a dog. Like many of you, I hate going to the dentist. I actually like my current dentist as a person, but I hate what his profession represents to… Read more »

There Is No Reason to Use a Shock Collar. In Fact, It Should Be Illegal

The Pet Professional Guild posted an “open letter” denouncing shock collar use, and I could not agree more. There is no need or valid reason to shock, poke, hang, hit, or throw chains at your dog, or to spray water in his face or hurl him to the ground on his back (called an alpha roll)…. Read more »

How to Ease Your New Rescue Dog Into Your Home and Life

Stability, routine, and a calm environment will help your new family member settle in. My husband and I fostered more than 400 dogs in need from central Texas shelters over the course of a decade. They gave me a lifetime’s worth of canine education, teaching me about the health and emotional needs of homeless dogs. In fact,… Read more »

Meet the Dog Zombie, Dr. Jessica Hekman

Dr. Hekman is studying the brains of dogs to help us better understand the genomics of canine behavior. Have you heard? A dog zombie exists! Don’t worry, I’m not talking about an undead canine who craves brains, but about scientist Dr. Jessica Hekman, who studies dog brains and goes by the nickname The Dog Zombie. She is one… Read more »

How High-Spirited Toby, Returned to Rescue 20 Times, Got a Forever Home

 The rambunctious, intelligent terrier needed the right person and the right trainer. Here’s how we helped Toby. Sarah Stiles, director of A Soft Place to Land dog rescue, tossed and turned every night for two years, asking herself the same question: “What are we going to do about Toby?” Toby is a 6-year-old mischief-maker of a dog…. Read more »

Are You Training a Puppy? Read “The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog”

Dr. Bruce Perry and Maia Szalavitz’s book is about traumatized children, but it offers valuable lessons that will help you raise a well-adjusted dog. It’s hard to find books these days that keep me up until I have finished the last word. Perhaps I am too picky, as a writer myself? In any case, I have… Read more »

Are You Training a Puppy? Read “The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog”

Dr. Bruce Perry and Maia Szalavitz’s book is about traumatized children, but it offers valuable lessons that will help you raise a well-adjusted dog. It’s hard to find books these days that keep me up until I have finished the last word. Perhaps I am too picky, as a writer myself? In any case, I have… Read more »

How to Prepare Your Dog for Holiday Guests

If your dog will be around holiday visitors, follow this advice from Dogster resident trainer Annie Phenix on acclimating him now. The holiday season is upon us — and by “us,” I mean both our human and our canine families. Dogs are affected by changes in their environments, and from October through the new year, dogs… Read more »