Our December newsletter each year is our “Year End” issue. The end of the year is a traditional time to reflect on our accomplishments from the past year. And to honestly review where we might have fallen short on our goals. Did you accomplish what you wanted this past year in regard to your dog?

Did you get in the training you had planned to do? Does your dog have better manners around home? Does he have better leash manners? Did you reduce that barking or leash reactivity or over-excitement with visitors at the door? Did you get your dog out for those daily walks you had vowed to do this year? Did you teach your dog a new trick or two or five?

If you didn't cover as much ground as you had hoped, don't beat yourself up about it. Most of us never quite find the time to accomplish everything we would like to! But now is your chance to remedy any areas where you might have fallen short with your dog(s) this past year.

What better time to renew your commitment to helping your dog reach his potential? If you have a dog who tends to bark a lot at passersby or the neighbor dogs behind the fence, winter is the best time to get started on that. If your dog has less than stellar leash manners or tends to be reactive toward other dogs or bicyclists or cars. . . now is the time to get working on that issue.

We tend to let things slide during the winter. We have shorter daylight hours, we have colder weather, sometimes the sidewalks are snow-covered . . . We can find lots of reasons why now is a good time to put things off.

But many of these issues get worse when spring rolls around and more people are outside. The more distractions you have to deal with, the more challenging these issues are to work on.

If you get a start in the winter months, springtime will be easier.

Here is what we do.

December is always a time to review the status of the past year's goals and set goals for the upcoming year.  Just like we have many personal and professional goals. the same is the case for our dogs.  We set those goals we want for our dogs in the same document where we list our personal and professional goals and review them monthly.  By setting goals, we find that this helps force us to put items on our to do list that will help us accomplish those goals.

So review the things you didn't make as much progress on this past year as you had hoped. And vow to get started now so that next year will be easier!



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16 hours ago

The Light Of Dog

Winnie, a Goldendoodle, is showing off her skills in dog parkour class by sitting on this log.

We used this pic as the feature pic for a post and video titled "Does your puppy know “Sit”? Are you sure? (Hint: it’s about the context!)"

We think of Sit as a pretty easy cue to teach our dogs. For some dogs, it might even be the only thing they learn.

But here's something to think about. . . What is your expectation for Sit?

Most people stop at the first step, which usually is: sit for a brief second directly in front of me when I have a treat in my hand.

But have you thought about where you go from there?

thelightofdog.com/does-your-puppy-know-sit-are-you-sure-hint-its-about-the-context/
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Winnie, a Goldendoodle, is showing off her skills in dog parkour class by sitting on this log. 

We used this pic as the feature pic for a post and video titled Does your puppy know “Sit”? Are you sure? (Hint: it’s about the context!) 

We think of Sit as a pretty easy cue to teach our dogs. For some dogs, it might even be the only thing they learn. 

But heres something to think about. . . What is your expectation for Sit? 

Most people stop at the first step, which usually is: sit for a brief second directly in front of me when I have a treat in my hand. 

But have you thought about where you go from there? 

https://thelightofdog.com/does-your-puppy-know-sit-are-you-sure-hint-its-about-the-context/

19 hours ago

The Light Of Dog

Bailey is the Black Lab mix in this video.

She was recently adopted and the owners wanted to know if she could join an upcoming group class.

Two concerns for her were her fearfulness at new/unexpected things and her unknown behavior with other dogs. So they brought her out for a quick visit for us to assess.

You can see in the video that she is curious and interested in the other dog. But as she gets more comfortable, she is also able to focus on her handlers and their treats.

Toward the end of the video we do see one lip curl/snarl from Bailey when the Goldendoodle turns toward her and is face-to-face, but we quickly give them both space and Bailey recovers immediately.

When she first arrived, she had her tail tucked all the way up under her. She was very nervous about being in a new place and not knowing what to expect. When the wind kicks up at one point, you see her startle. But she recovers quickly again.

We determined that Bailey would be a good candidate for the group class and that it will be a good step toward teaching her better manners, getting better acclimated to other dogs, and building her confidence.
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Should dogs greet other dogs when on leash? https://thelightofdog.com/should-dogs-greet-other-dogs-when-on-leash/
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