“How long do you have to train a dog for?”

By |2018-10-15T09:49:25+11:00June 10th, 2018|General Information, Training|

Dear Sarah, We’ve just brought home a new dog and we want to make sure we do everything right, especially with regards to training. How long and how often should you train a dog for? Terry M Hi Terry, That’s a really great question, and one that I get asked a lot. I often find that people are quite enthusiastic when they first bring a new dog home, and in the interest of having a well trained dog, will often spend literally hours training – which is great in theory, but in reality, can actually have a negative effect [...]

“Our puppy bites – a lot! Does this mean she will be aggressive when she is older?”

By |2018-10-15T10:55:03+11:00April 10th, 2018|General Information, Puppies|

Dear Sarah, Out 12 week old puppy bites us – a lot! We are so worried that she’s going to be aggressive when she grows up. Is this likely? Barbara J Hi Barbara, This is a great question - as many new puppy owners have exactly the same concerns. But in actual fact, at 12 weeks of age, puppies are supposed to be biting a lot. And there are 4 reasons why. They are teething. And at 12 weeks, things really start ramping up in that department. Unlike humans who get one or two (or if you’re unlucky, three) [...]

“Why does our dog have to sniff everything when we go for a walk?”

By |2018-10-15T11:19:28+11:00March 15th, 2018|General Information, Reinforcement, Training|

Dear Sarah, Our dog wants to sniff a lot when out on a walk. We’ve read somewhere that we shouldn’t let her because she should be walking with us. Is this right? Kaitlyn O Hi Kaitlyn, Dogs’ view the world very differently to the way that humans do. They don’t see the world through their eyes like we do - their nose and their sense of smell is the thing that gives them the most information about the world around them. I don’t agree with not allowing a dog to sniff on a walk. That would be like me [...]

“We got another dog! What should we do to make sure both dogs learn to get along?”

By |2018-09-21T15:15:43+10:00January 16th, 2018|Dog Ettiquette, Dominance Myth, General Information, Play Styles, Training|

Dear Sarah, We’ve just brought a second dog into our home. We’ve never had 2 dogs before. Is there anything that we should do differently now that we’ve added to our furry family? Nick B Hi Nick, Firstly, congratulations on your new addition! You are now what’s known as a “multi-dog household”, and yes – there are some things that are worth mentioning. Now that you have more than one dog, it is tempting for the dogs to do everything together. After all – you got them to be company for each other, right? It’s actually really important for [...]

“Our puppy used to be so well behaved, but now he’s become a nightmare. Have we done something wrong?”

By |2018-09-21T15:04:55+10:00November 5th, 2017|Behaviour Changes, General Information, Training|

Dear Sarah, I’m not sure what’s going on with our dog. We got him at 8 weeks and have had him for 2 months. He’s been great! We’ve been to Puppy Preschool and he did really well. Now, all of a sudden he’s stopped listening, won’t come back when he’s called and just seems really naughty. What are we doing wrong?? Beth M Hi Beth, Firstly, chances are you’re not doing anything wrong. Your puppy has just hit his next developmental stage – the adolescent period. This stage starts at around the 4 month mark (although it can start [...]

“Is there a way to prevent my dog from developing a fear of storms?”

By |2018-10-15T12:49:26+11:00July 29th, 2017|General Information|

Dear Sarah, Our last dog had really bad storm phobia. We’ve just got a new puppy and don’t want him to have the same issues. Is there anything we can do to prevent him from being terrified during storms? Joanna Z Hi Joanna, Storms can be quite scary for dogs, and in the Northern Rivers area, August often heralds the start of storm season, so your question is perfectly timed!! Like with many things, prevention is better than cure – so with new puppies, providing a really pleasurable experience while the storm is happening is a great way to [...]

“How do you know if it’s too hot for dogs?”

By |2018-04-04T09:12:58+10:00December 29th, 2016|General Information, Keeping Cool, Safety Concerns|

Dear Sarah, Our Staffie loves to lay out in the sun, even in the middle of summer. I’m worried that she might get heat stroke. Can this happen to dogs? Laura B Hi Laura, Absolutely! Dogs are not very good at cooling themselves and heat stroke or heat stress is very common in dogs during the summer months. Here are a few tips that might help your beautiful girl stay cool this summer. 1.      Encourage her out of the sun and into a cooler area, especially as the day starts warming up. Dogs can not only suffer from heat [...]

“I want to make sure I give my puppy the best start to good behaviour. What do I need to know about?”

By |2018-02-22T10:52:53+11:00July 1st, 2016|General Information|

Dear Sarah, We want to make sure we’re on the right track with our puppy from a behaviour point of view. Do you have a quick checklist of things that we can mark off to make sure? Breeanna W Hi Breeanna, Behaviour problems in dogs can often be complex, but here is a list of things that you can go through to rule out the easy stuff: 1.      Does your dog have enough food, water and shelter? – These are a dog’s primary needs. Make sure that the food they receive is good quality and is the appropriate daily [...]

“Can diet affect behaviour?”

By |2018-03-22T15:42:35+11:00June 1st, 2016|Diet, General Information|

Dear Sarah, We think our dog’s problem behaviour may be diet related. Is that possible? Diana P    Hi Diana, As with children, there is much evidence supporting a strong link between diet and behaviour in dogs. A poor quality diet full of preservatives, additives, flavours, and colours (not to mention high fat and salt contents) can make the liver sluggish, lead to weight gain, contribute to skin conditions and poor health. It also impedes brain function, contributes to poor behaviour and makes our pets feel pretty “blerrrgghh”. There are a number of different theories out there on what food [...]

“How do dogs normally react around horses?”

By |2018-04-04T08:50:13+10:00May 1st, 2016|General Information, Safety Concerns|

Dear Sarah, We were on Lennox Beach the other day and saw people riding horses. Is it safe to have our Kelpie around the horses and vice versa? Adrianne H Hi Adrianne, This is a difficult question to answer as I haven’t met your Kelpie, but what we are talking about here is a safety issue – for your dog, the horses and the riders. Dogs and horses can be unpredictable. Seemingly placid dogs who are very well behaved and very responsive to owner requests can completely “switch off” when something of interest – like a horse – is [...]