Doggie See, Doggie Do

Do you ever feel like your dog is a copycat? A new study shows that dogs can imitate human behavior for up to ten minutes after it has happened. Prior to this study, only apes and humans had been shown to demonstrate this ability, one that requires a high degree of cognition. The researchers were Read More

Why Is My Dog Peeing On My Pillow? (Or Revenge Of The Turds)

Improper elimination in the home stirs up lots of emotion in humans. Bafflement, anger, frustration, are a few that come to mind. But for some, the explanation that comes to mind is revenge on the part of the dog. Once this explanation enters our thoughts, it becomes our nature to defend our view. We create stories around other events that seem to confirm our perspective and it can be very difficult to unlearn what we think we know.

4 Ways to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with Your Dog

Today is Cinco de Mayo! This holiday is in recognition of the Mexican Army’s unlikely victory over the French in the Battle of Puebla in 1862. While not a holiday commonly associated with pets, if you are anything like me, you are always looking for an excuse to celebrate any holiday with your dog.

Don’t Overlook Your “Easy” Dog

Have you ever seen a parent in the supermarket with two children - one perfectly behaved, and one throwing a tantrum? Which one is typically getting the attention while the other stands quietly by?

Give Your Dog an Instant Safe Haven On Walks

We’ve all seen a small child clinging to Mom’s neck while he safely views the world from under her hair. A little puppy has the same need for a safe haven. You may have seen your own puppy hurtle in from the garden when there’s an alarming noise, and dive into her bed. Plunging into the Read More

Caring for a Senior Dog

The primary form of communication for dogs is body language. It is important that you learn more about this language, especially if you are caring for senior dogs, in order to understand their changing needs.

Behind the Scenes of Greatest American Dog: Doggie Photo Shoot

From the time we started shooting, it was obvious that they wanted relationships to start…. and not just with our dogs. Laura and I were pretty much the only single people in the competition, but I’m sure they (CBS) would have been down for anything! Here were some of the rules: 1. No computers, magazines, Read More

Blind Couple United by Guide Dogs

A blind couple had two very special four-legged friends to thank at their wedding--their guide dogs. Mark Gaffey and Claire Johnson met at a guide dog training session, where their two Labrador Retrievers took to each other immediately, and were often caught playing and cuddling with each other during training. Mark and Claire noticed that Read More

Why Does My Dog Keep Pulling Me?!?!?!

“Why does my dog keep pulling me?”  This is the phrase I hear over and over from clients who are trying their best to walk their dogs on a regular basis.  Short of giving up, they suffer the embarrassment, danger and sometimes pain, of walking a dog who pulls like a freight train when on Read More

Dog Boredom vs Anxiety

Many people return home after a day at work to a household of destruction and mayhem, and their first assumption is that their dog suffers from acute separation anxiety. Sometimes this can be the case, but in many cases, the dog has destroyed the house as a cure for another very common problem in the Read More

Victoria’s Tips for Keeping Your Dog Stress-Free Over the Holidays

It's hard to believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Christmas decorations are already lighting up homes and businesses, and I even ran into Santa Claus at the mall! The holidays are a wonderful time to spend time with family and friends, but they can also be a challenging time when you have pets. Anxious or reactive dogs are especially prone to stress during the holidays. Here are eight tips for keeping your dog safe and stress-free this holiday season.

Picking the Right Dog for Your Health & Lifestyle

We're just beginning to understand the extent of the remarkable bond between dogs and humans. Adding a dog to your life can be a wonderful idea at any age, but it’s not a decision to take lightly. If you’re looking for a new dog for yourself or a family member, it’s important to take your time to find the right dog for your age, health, and lifestyle.

Victoria’s Top 10 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Adopting a Dog

October is "Adopt a Shelter Dog" month, and you're likely hearing all the reasons why you should bring home a new addition to the family. But are you ready for the commitment and responsibility of a new dog? Have you done your research yet? Check out Victoria's top ten questions to ask yourself before you add a new dog to your home.

Dog/Dog Aggression

Dog/dog Aggression: There’s nothing pet parents like better than socializing with their dog in the summer sun. There are, however, two important questions to ask: “Is it safe?” and “Is my dog really having fun?” Your dog speaks to you through body language--ear and tail carriage, stance, behavior and vocalizations. Perhaps your dog is telling Read More

“Let’s Go for a Ride!” Desensitization for the Fearful Dog

Wildfire season is upon us, so we want to be sure that your Fifi or Bowser happily hops into the car if you need to evacuate. Although the desensitization techniques highlighted in this article are applied to overcoming the fear of riding in a car - the same principles can be applied to any fear, Read More

Help for the Fearful Dog

“Lilly” certainly was little. She measured just up to the high end of my ankle and it made me shiver to think of what it was like to live down there with all the giant humans and bigger dogs tramping all over the place. Nevertheless, I’ve seen many confident, even overly-confident toy breed pups that Read More

Celebrity Dog Row–Strut Your Mutt LA a Success!

Celebrity Row--Strut Your Mutt LA, Best Friends Animal Society's (BFAS) first Coast to Coast dog walk-a-thon was a big success, raising more than $200,00 for homeless pets. I decided to attend just for the fun of it, to network, and to let Hollywood know that Victoria Stilwell dog trainers are "in the (dog) house" and Read More

Holistic Summer Guide To Safe and Happy Cats

With a little commonsense and mindfulness, our cats can enjoy summer as much as we do. There’s nothing like a cat on a lap to help us slow down to smell the roses. Have a safe, happy and healthy summer!

{D.I.Y} Bone Ball Decor

This would be perfect as a centerpiece at a shelter event, gala or like what we are doing, a doggie birthday party. We are going to teach you all, step by step, how to make some bone ball decorations.

Positively Success Story: Stella

Stella, my big girl lab mix, was rescued from a high kill shelter a day before her time was up! We planned on fostering her and instantly fell in love with her. She was super sweet and smart and loving with people, but was scary when she saw other dogs. This was a problem cause I Read More

Thanks To You!

Thanksgiving is one of my all-time favorite holidays. Being from Britain, I of course did not celebrate Thanksgiving until I met my American husband, but since then, I’ve come to truly appreciate what is one of the least commercialized major holidays. I also value this time of year as a rare opportunity to do what we all love to do best: eat good food and spend quality time with friends and family. So I thought this would be a good time to let you all know how very much you all mean to me.

How to Become an Animal Communicator!

Ever get the feeling your dog is talking to you? You’re right. If you’ve longed to know what’s going on in your dog’s heart and mind, and to communicate back, here’s a surefire way to connect. Learn to read what your dog is saying to you, and speak to your dog in a language your Read More

Victoria’s Interview With Dr. Sophia Yin – Part II

Part two of my interview with Dr. Sophia Yin about her new book, Perfect Puppy in 7 Days:   Victoria:  Perfect Puppy in 7 Days really focuses a lot on early learning and socialization. In fact, John Bradshaw, author of Dog Sense, says “Worth buying for the socialization advice and checklist alone.”  Can you explain Read More

Low Stress Handling Lab in Chicago at Narnia Pets

This weekend featured another successful workshop and low stress handling lab in Chicago at Narnia Pet, a fantastic positive-reinforcement based dog-training facility. While I have held most of these labs for veterinarians and their staff, most of the attendees at this lab were dog trainers, groomers, doggie daycare providers, as well as some veterinary hospital staff.

Positively Podcasts

Join Victoria and her co-host (and It's Me or the Dog alum) Holly Firfer as they discuss everything from the hottest dog-related topics of the day to the inside scoop from the set of It's Me or the Dog and everything in between. A fun, and informative look into Victoria's life and work, the Positively Read More