For The Bug, every kernel exceeded the span of her tiny teeth and she developed mouth sores and an infection so severe it earned her the name “Stinky” from her owners. I was called on to intervene — and took her home, treated her infections, fed her broth and boiled chicken, and hoped she would survive.
And survive she did – becoming a bright and happy dog that was social, loving and accomplished in tricks and charm. Mad about kittens, fearless with dogs many times her size, and totally accepting of humans despite her early mistreatment, The Bug was a tiny package of everything that makes us love dogs.
I researched his history a little more, and found out that Buckley had been relocated after the death of his previous owner. The new owners had taken a “hands off” approach while they waited for him to adjust to his new surroundings, but that was exactly the opposite of what this horse needed.
Grieving and insecure in new and unfamiliar surroundings, he needed extra attention and interaction to help him bond with his new owners. We developed a schedule for daily grooming and riding, and they followed my advice to include him, as much as they could, in outdoor family activities. In a few weeks, Buckley was a different horse and interacting well in his new situation.
Jenny was pregnant, newly relocated to Rapid City, and her husband was deployed to Iraq. The dog was missing the family member he most respected, disturbed over the move, and a classic example of a dog filled with fear and confusion reacting with mounting hostility and aggression.
Jinx’s reactions were so fear-based and persistent that they suggested a chemical imbalance so I treated him with drops of pear and orange flower essences.
We also had multiple sessions – sometimes difficult at first — reinforcing to the dog that his role was subordinate to that of Jenny and her toddler.
After some training and behavioral work, Jinx became a more secure and relaxed dog, giving up his threatening behavior towards family members and visitors.
In poor physical condition and initially keeping a low profile in his new household, Midnight seemed like he would fit right in. But as his strength increased, so did his attitude. Soon he exhibited an unhappy tendency to unprovoked biting.
We had to teach Midnight the difference between good behavior and bad behavior — praising him lavishly for the former and using a form of kitty “time out” for the latter.
Soon he was a rehabilitated cat and living harmoniously with his new clan.
My passion is to train and rehabilitate dogs with behavioral issues. Some even call me a "dog whisperer" thanks to my ability to work through particularly tough behavior problems and help with aggressive dogs, even when other trainers have failed and owners have nearly given up.
Through my early love for animals, I developed it into a lifetime career and commitment. Backed with 20 years of animal training experience, I take pride in making life better for people and pets through my animal psychology services.