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October 4, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Lucy Tate

Dog Manners: Tips for Owners and Their Pups When in Public Spaces

For many dog owners, going out in public with their pooch is inevitable. They take their pups to restaurants and on trips, allowing them to be a part of the family every day. In many cases, these dogs become comfortable enough with their excursions to get socialized, meaning they can easily handle being around people and other dogs. Some pets, however, need a little training before they’re ready to hang out in public spaces, both for their comfort and everyone’s safety. Continue Reading >

Can Chiropractic Help My Dog?

When humans experience back pain, they will often see a chiropractor, but did you know that there are chiropractors that will treat your pet too? Yes, animal chiropractic is a real veterinary practice that is backed by the Animal Veterinary Chiropractic Association (AVCA). Many pet owners are sold on chiropractic – and it isn’t necessarily new. Continue Reading >

August 23, 2018 | We Love | Story by Kasturi Das

Personal Story: A Dog Called Ringo

I vaguely remember this incident from the time when I was a toddler. I felt a gentle tug at my skirt while I was loitering in the corridors of our old Assam-type* house. I looked down to find a tiny snout peeking out through an opening in a wooden box, biting at the flowy material. It was a German Spitz that my uncle had brought along on his trip home. Continue Reading >

August 15, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Backchaining Behaviors

Imagine you are sitting on your couch, but are really craving a soda or a water. Wouldn’t it be nice to just be able to send your dog to go retrieve you something to quench your thirst? Or what about those large grocery hauls? Wouldn’t your furry companion be the perfect extra set of hands to help you carry those bags into the house? Lots of these types of tasks are teachable to any dog with the proper foundation and motivation. But how do you even get started in teaching something more complex like this? Learning and understanding the concept of backchaining can be a very helpful theoretical foundation to assist you in teaching these behaviors. Continue Reading >

August 8, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Counter Conditioning

As a whole, many of the dogs that I see come in for training arrive on my doorstep due to unsavory behaviors that a client is trying to train out of their dog. Many of these behaviors revolve around fear or aggression, such as reactivity. Removing undesirable behaviors from a dog’s natural set of responses can prove to be a challenging task - it does not happen immediately, and it requires some systematic work to help a dog to replace a poor behavior pattern with something that is more desirable. Continue Reading >

Dog Obesity: Is It Really That Bad?

Canine obesity is a significant problem in the United states. An estimated 54% of dogs are obese or overweight. An obese dog is an unhealthy dog, a ticking time bomb. It is a suffering animal, often enduring great pain and has a shortened life span to look forward to. The problem is, many owners don’t acknowledge that there is a problem or don’t understand they are subjecting their dog to very serious health risks. Continue Reading >

July 25, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Problem Solving The Recall-Part 2

Previously, we discussed how to begin to build a recall with your dog. While for many dogs those steps help to build a reliable recall, some dogs are more easily distracted and will need some additional work to help further proof this behavior. Nothing beats the guidance of a one-on-one trainer, but below you will find some skills to practice to help build motivation for the recall. Continue Reading >

July 23, 2018 | We Love | Story by Laura Tonyan

Personal Story: The Adventures Of Little Big Mouth

“Little Big Mouth.” That’s what one of our neighbors nicknamed our undersized English Setter Mix, who’s real name is Payton. The nom de guerre is well deserved though. Payton barely passed the 26 lb mark and everyone thinks she’s a puppy by her high energy levels, LOUD BORKS, and small stature. In reality though she’s somewhere between 8-10 years old and has recently been diagnosed with colon cancer. Continue Reading >

July 20, 2018 | We Care | Tips from Lucy Tate

Tips for Keeping Your Pup Fit

Many humans mistakenly believe that dogs get plenty of exercise by running around the backyard chasing whatever bounces into their boundaries. But nothing could be further from the truth, and the majority of activities dogs do on their own are in short bursts and don’t offer any real benefits. Dogs, like humans, thrive when their bodies stay in motion. Young dogs, especially, need regular exercise to expend pent-up energy. And when you exercise with your dog, you create a bond and establish patterns of good behavior. Continue Reading >

July 18, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Building A Reliable Recall-Part 1

Everyone has that dream of being able to take their pup off leash at a park or the beach, but that dream can frequently turn into a nightmare if your dog does not have a reliable recall. Because the outside world can be SO stimulating for most dogs, this can be a very difficult command to build since distractions are more than prevalent. Fundamental skills should be developed to help build consistency for a solid recall. Continue Reading >

July 11, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

How To Train Your Dog

Teaching a dog tricks not only helps to build engagement for training, but it can also bring fresh enthusiasm to your regimen, mentally challenge your dog, and encourage skills that can be used for other tasks or for physical conditioning. Many tricks can build off of a handful of core skills that we can teach to help build more complex behaviors down the road. Continue Reading >

Renting With Your Furry Companion

As a Bay Area native, I am deeply aware of the challenges that come along with living in this amazing place. Scare apartments, high rental costs, and most importantly, the limited selection in places that are dog friendly. With so many people having dogs and so few availabilities, knowing how to best market yourself and your dogs can go a long way in being able to secure your new home! Continue Reading >

February 15, 2018 | We Care | Tips from Marie Aymard

How To Utilize Canine Training Equipment

Walk into a pet store, and you will find at least one aisle dedicated to tools to walking your dog on a leash. Walk down the next aisle, and you are sure to find more equipment dedicated to training - everything from treats and clickers, to crates and pee pads, wanting a well behaved furry family member has become a huge market for the sale of a wide variety of training equipment. So how do you decide what is the best for your dog? And most importantly, what actually works? Continue Reading >

February 12, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Jessica Walter

How To Build A Dog Friendly Garden

San Francisco has great weather nearly all year round, which is why so many of us love to spend time together as a family (dogs included) in the garden. If you are thinking of bringing a pup home for the first time, however, you may be surprised to learn that your garden may pose risks to your pup’s safety. Organization, the right selection of plants, and escape prevention are just a few steps you can take to ensure Fido is safe and sound while frolicking in the back (or front) yard. Continue Reading >

February 7, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

How To Train New Behaviors

Getting a dog to offer a new behavior with increased frequency in order to put it on cue requires precise marking and reward timing. In my experience, I find that I utilize two major techniques when trying to implement a new behavior into my dog’s repertoire - luring and free shaping. Continue Reading >

February 1, 2018 | We Care | Tips from Marie Aymard

Recall Tips And Tricks

There is no better feeling that having the confidence in your dog to be able to comfortably let them off of their leash and know, without doubt, that they will come back to you when called. It is an elusive accomplishment for many dog owners, and probably the most frequently stated goal for new clients coming in for training. Continue Reading >

January 29, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Heather Burdo

4 Reasons To Train Your Dog

You bring home your new pup and you’re completely in love with your new addition to your family. With all the excitement over your new dog, you may not have considered training him. Once he starts chewing on shoes and barking like crazy at the neighbors, there’s no better time to start training. You can train your dog yourself with some useful resources online or you can contact a professional dog trainer. Continue Reading >

January 25, 2018 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

What Is Leash Reactivity?

Leash reactivity, sometimes also called leash aggression, is one of the most common problems prospective clients come in wanting to address with their dogs. It can make walk time extremely uncomfortable, even though it should be an enjoyable activity for both you and your dog. So what is leash reactivity? Where does it come from? Continue Reading >

December 29, 2017 | We Care | Story by Marie Aymard

Babies and Dogs: Beyond The Cute Factor

Is there anything cuter than a captured moment between a young child and a dog? There is something about those interactions that melt my heart. But with all of that cuteness, comes the challenge of properly acclimating a dog to a new human to help set them both up for a successful relationship. Recently, there have been some difficult to watch videos circulating around social media with dogs being pushed past their limits and redirecting their frustration on a child. These incidents are preventable, and it is time that proper techniques for introduction and management were addressed. Continue Reading >

December 4, 2017 | We Love | Tips from Heather Burdo

7 Reasons To Adopt

An alarming number of adoptable pets are becoming euthanized in the United States. The unfortunate reason – Too many pets are brought into shelters and not enough people will consider adoption. There are several reasons why adopting is better than buying. Continue Reading >

November 9, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Dog Training As A Lifestyle

Committing to having a well behaved, furry member of society requires dedication to the entire well being of a dog. A great first step to achieving this goal is to enroll your dog in training classes. Not only does this help you to teach your dog good manners, but it also helps you to build a working relationship and line of communication with your dog that will carry throughout their lives Continue Reading >

October 29, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Bernie Boxer

No Tricks, Maybe Treats: Tips For A Safe Halloween With Your Dog

Like with most holidays or big celebrations, when Halloween comes around we can get pretty self-absorbed. In our quest to host a perfect party, build a perfect costume, or make our house the best house for trick-or-treaters on the block, we may forget about how our dogs feel about all of this hustle and bustle. Here’s how to make sure your dog stays safe and happy this Halloween. Continue Reading >

October 26, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Living With Dog Aggression

Try as we might, sometimes challenges arise with a dog that are very difficult to train out of them. Dog to dog aggression can often be one of those challenges. Even dogs that were social as puppies can develop dog aggression or selectivity due to bad experiences, over zealous play, or maturation that creates intolerance. Continue Reading >

October 12, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Chelsea Tirone

Holiday Friendly Dog Treat Recipes

Store-bought dog biscuits are not only expensive, they also contain ingredients that may be harmful to your pup. So why not make your own? Homemade dog treats are not only easy to make but healthy as well! With ingredients like peanut butter and vegetables, these three treat recipes are delicious and nutritious. Continue Reading >

October 12, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

Agility For Your Urban Pup

Take a walk around your neighborhood. Chances are within a couple of blocks, you will pass things like benches, fire hydrants, planter ledges, mail boxes, etc. To the average person, these are just everyday objects that do not attract much attention. Now imagine your dog being able to balance on these objects, walk across them, or jump up onto new surfaces - your mundane neighborhood walk just took on a whole new life! I fondly refer to the utilization of these everyday objects as “urban agility”. Continue Reading >

October 7, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Lerma Pere

5 Natural Ways To Fight Ticks

Ticks are pesky – both for pets and humans alike. And it’s not just because their bites are itchy. Did you know that they can make you sick? Ticks can transmit diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and spotted fever. In dogs, they can lead to anemia, blood loss, tick paralysis, and skin irritation. Continue Reading >

October 4, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Marie Aymard

How To Handle A Vet Visit

One of the most challenging experiences for owners and their dogs can be visits to the vet. Tension runs high, so very often, dogs will exhibit behaviors they never do anywhere else. Teaching your dog handling skills to make checkups and other vet visits less of an ordeal can make these trips much less traumatic for both the dog and their person. Continue Reading >

September 28, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Marie Aymard

How to Keep Your Pup Cool In Hot Weather

Who doesn’t love summer time?! The barbeques, the beach, the long days, the vacations, and most importantly, the extra time with your pooch! While most people love the warmth of the summer, those day that are brutally hot for people are just as tough on the dogs. Here are some tips and tricks to keeping your dog cool (and safe!) during those scorching days. Continue Reading >

September 20, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Marie Aymard

All You Need To Know About Muzzles

Like many other hot topics in dog training, the use of a muzzle has a lot of stigma around it. For most people, seeing a muzzled dog walking down the street automatically causes feelings of panic as the dog is assumed to be unpredictable. There are many positive uses for a muzzle, and ensuring any dog is properly muzzle trained can be a huge relief should any situation arise where your dog might have to don one of these Hannibal Lecter masks. Continue Reading >

September 1, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Mary L. Liken

GPS Collars For Off-Leash Hiking

Off-leash hikes are a great way for your pup to experience the great outdoors but what happens when he catches the scent of a squirrel or other critter and takes off? Enter the connected pet, the latest market segment to be disrupted, that offers many emerging gadgets meant to help you keep track of your pet and their activities. Continue Reading >

August 25, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Heather Burdo

Reasons To Reward Your Dog

Positive reinforcement isn’t just for kids, it’s ideal for dogs as well. Figure out the best reward your dog would respond to best, whether it’s a treat, playtime, a new Frisbee, or even verbal praise. Dogs love knowing their humans are approving of them and their behavior. Most dogs strive to be loyal to their owners so when praise and rewards are involved, dogs know their mission was accomplished. Continue Reading >

August 23, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

What You Need To Know About Dog Parks

Dog parks are a hot topic amongst dog trainers. On one hand, they are wonderful places to socialize your dog with fellow dog lovers. On the flip side, they can be the source of many health and behavioral complications for dogs. This article is not meant to sway you one way or another, but more to discuss the pros and cons of the utilization of dog parks. Continue Reading >

August 9, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Marie Aymard

When Nerves Get The Best Of You

Challenges with dogs come in many shapes. From health problems to aggression, many dogs struggle with a wide array of behavioral problems that often bring them through the doors of a training facility. Having handled and train hundreds of dogs of all breeds, I often get asked what the most difficult dog is to train. Continue Reading >

How To Socialize An Adult Dog

A lot of forums out there are of the opinion there is a window period that comes with socializing rescues. Yes, dogs that have not been socialized as puppies usually present as adult dogs with abuse symptoms. A lot of people that have shy dogs may assume their dogs went through abuse, but in all probability, they were not socialized well when they were young. Continue Reading >

July 31, 2017 | We Love | Story by Sandy Kenrick

The Road To Quentin: A Personal Story

The boys grab their bikes and pedal down the road as they make their way to the newest discovery on their long list of adventures. The pack consists of close friends who foster a deep and enduring relationship with each other, and with their dog. Snoopy wasn’t always part of the crew, as she was considered a street dog and many of the boys’ mothers chased her away in the fear of rabies, fleas, and ticks. Continue Reading >

July 14, 2017 | We Love | Story by John Verling

Rescue Spotlight: Daisy

Daisy came into our lives when she was about nine months old. We know very little about her, except that she was the youngest of the litter and unwanted by the owner. She is a beautiful little cross, between what and what we are not sure, but there is some Yorkie and a lot of Cairn in the mix. Though she was dirty, flea and worm-infested, we instantly fell in love with her and today Daisy is the light of our lives. What we don’t know is what Daisy has seen in her past. Continue Reading >

Balanced Training

Styles of training have shifted dramatically over the years. As people are wanting their dogs to be better trained to join them on outings, trainers are seeing more and more people expecting high end obedience out of their pets to ensure good behavior in public. I absolutely love this! I firmly believe in having dogs be a part of the family system, and raising the standard of dog training helps to make this possible. Continue Reading >

May 17, 2017 | We Love | Story by Tara Renner

The Good Dog; A Personal Story

In 2009, I was working for the state parks (still do). One of the perks of my job is that being centrally located, I am able to travel the state weekly and visit many beautiful state properties. One of the downsides, I soon learned, is that cruel people occasionally dump pets in those parks. Continue Reading >

How To Help Your Nervous Dog With Car Rides

I recently read a fantastic book called How to be Your Dog's Best Friend: A Training Manual for Dog Owners by the Monks of New Skete. The part that stuck with me after reading that book is the emphasis on the fact that to you, your dog is your best friend. But to your dog, you are the leader of the pack - their source of socializing, of friendship, of belonging. I really took that to heart. Yes, I work a full-time job and I hate leaving my dog at home, but I do my best to include her when I can. Short trip to the grocery store? Hop in. Let's go for a ride. The pack is on the move! Continue Reading >

Working Dogs And Their Jobs

They don’t call a dog “Man’s best friend” for nothing. When it comes to our four legged friends, finding constructive ways to keep them busy isn’t always as easy as it seems. Whether you own a toy poodle or a Doberman pincher, almost every dog needs something to do that burns off their excess energy and keeps them out of trouble. Continue Reading >

Louie’s Club – A Dog Sitting Exchange Community

My wife and I adopted Louie when he was just an adorable 8-week old puppy in April 2015. From day one, he brought so much love and joy into our lives; definitely one of the best decisions we ever made! We quickly grew super attached to him (and vice versa), which made it really hard to be away from him when we had to travel. Not only did we want his boarding environment to be safe, but also one where he would be loved and cared for (just like at home). Continue Reading >

April 19, 2017 | We Love

Gift Ideas For The Dog Lover In Your Life

Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are right around the corner and Barkswell has been lucky enough to have some awesome companies looking to give discounts for their work. Whether for upcoming celebrations, special occasions or just to show some extra care to those you love, here are some choice gift ideas for the dog lover in your life. Canine themed or not, these gifts are right up our alley Continue Reading >

April 14, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Elaine Coe

Canine Diabetes: Symptoms and Complications

One morning my husband and I were getting ready for work when he called out from the kitchen, “Did you spill a glass of water? The floor is wet.” Of course, I didn’t: I would never not clean it up. We dismissed it as something Chloe, our beagle, probably knocked over (her water bowl, a cup she swiped from the table, etc.). Continue Reading >

How Loving A Single Cat Saved A Few Dogs

Ok, why do we have a story about a cat posted here on Barkswell? Bear with me. I'll bring this around to dogs, trust me. Some time ago my husband and I decided to go take a look at the local shelter. We weren't particularly looking for a new pet, we just needed to be around animals for a bit. You know, show them a little love while they wait for their forever homes. Continue Reading >

March 31, 2017 | We Learn | Tips from Jane Meggitt

4 Tips For Picking A Hybrid Dog

Purebred or mixed breed? That's the question many would-be dog owners ask when deciding about adding a four-legged friend to their family. Hybrid dogs – resulting from the crossing of two different canine breeds –have certain advantages over purebreds. They are generally not as expensive to buy, and also benefit from hybrid vigor. That means that a dog of mixed genetics is likely to have fewer health problems than one from a long line of purebred dogs with shared genes. Continue Reading >

March 22, 2017 | We Learn | Story by Denzel B.

What Does Your Dog Really Think Of You?

Have you ever just sat there looking at your dog sleep and thought: “I wonder what he/she thinks of me?” First of all, when you come into the room, I wonder what our dogs mentally say to themselves to acknowledge our presence. Is it positive? Like “here comes (insert awesome dog owner name)” or is it more personal like “wow he/she’s put on weight” or “really? You wore that outfit last weekend”. Continue Reading >

March 20, 2017 | We Care | Tips from Richard Bryant

How To Keep Your Old Dog Feeling Young

Getting old… it hurts. Even for your dogs. It’s important as a pet owner to keep up with your dog’s growing needs as he develops from an adult to a grand-dog. Just like humans, dogs will go through similar growing pains as they get older and their bones begin to lose density and joints become unbalanced. But there are ways to help your older dog feel young again. Continue Reading >

March 17, 2017 | We Recall | Story by Tara Renner

My Besenji: The Dog Who Was A Cat

I’ve never lived without a dog, usually with multiples of dogs. Living in a home without a dog is a state of existence I couldn’t really even contemplate. When I finally (more or less) entered adulthood, and became engaged to my fiancée, we made the decision to continue living with our parents for a while. This was not because we were old fashioned, but cheap. We would stockpile some cash until we could afford to move out. I couldn’t wait to pick out our first dog together. Continue Reading >

March 10, 2017 | We Learn | Story by Cathy E.

3 Things You May Not Know About Poodles

If a poufy hairdo, nail polish and little pink bows come to mind when you hear the word “Poodle,” you’re missing the point. While it’s true that some Poodle parents still favor the foppish look of leg and tail puffs, big hair and various adornments, most people who share their home with Poodles appreciate the breed for characteristics other than their foo-foo potential. Continue Reading >

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