With Harsh Discipline, No One Wins

It has been long accepted that physically disciplining a child through means such as spanking or hitting is detrimental to the child's emotional development and well-being. But what about harsh verbal discipline? A study was recently released that found children are more prone to depression and behavior problems if their parents resort to shouting or swearing at them when they misbehave.

Consent: It’s Not Just for People!

Consent is a right of every living being. We expect to be asked prior to being touched. But we give consent to strangers to touch our dogs without asking the dog.

Introducing the Newly-Redesigned Positively No-Pull Harness

The newly-redesigned Positively No-Pull Harness works by utilizing the dog’s natural center of gravity much the same way a harness on a horse does – effectively and painlessly allowing the handler to redirect the dog when she pulls during walks.

Reactive Dog? Play The Cone Game (With Video)

I often get asked what games should I play with my dog if they maybe lack confidence, are anxious or fearful or reactive or just need some fun injected into their lives. Well, the answer to all of those is something I call the cone game.

Teaching a Dog Not to Be Scared of a Leash or Collar

Desensitisation and counter conditioning are valuable skills to use with fearful dogs and great care must be taken when using these tools in order to make sure that we don’t push dogs beyond their limits, making their fears worse

7 Things Reactive Dog Owners Want You to Know

If reactive dog owners come off as crazy, understand it's only because we've got a lot on our minds. Here's what we'd like you to know about reactive dog owners before you meet us.

Leash Control: It’s Not About Control at All

People go to great lengths to try to achieve what they see as a "gold star level" of leash control using all kinds of questionable methods. But here's the thing: true leash control isn't about control at all.

“Why Can’t My Dog Be Normal?”

It may seem sometimes like everyone else has a “normal” dog while you struggle to make minute changes towards the better with your own. How can we cope?

3 Behaviors Your Dog Should Know Before His First Road Trip

While crates and pet seatbelts are important safety products that can help your dog in a car accident, most pet-related emergencies are caused by unruly behaviors displayed by untrained, uneducated dogs. Road trips with your dog can be a ton of fun if they know some important life-saving behaviors like these.

My Husband is NOT a Dog Trainer

Living with him has been a great learning lesson for me. He is helping me to gain a better understanding of what a typical dog owning couple deals with.

No Cue November

We have a new game at my facility called “cue fasting” and we now require a “cue fast” for all of our clients when they begin training with us. We’ve decided to take the game up a notch in what we are calling “No Cue November.”

We Are Not Who You Think We Are

We ARE just like you. Our dogs are not monsters. They are just dogs, just like any other dogs. Just like people are all individuals, so are dogs.

“No” Is Not Enough Information

I like to call no a "place holder". A "place holder" cue should be something we can use to interrupt a behavior...until we gather our wits and give the dog a cue that replaces the behavior with something better or at least something incompatible.

Help! My Puppy is Deaf. What Now?

Ultimately, what I’ve realized is that living with and training a deaf dog isn’t harder, it’s just different. Here are a few tips to help new deaf dog pet parents get started. I hope these help ease your anxiety and fears during this transition.

Truth Wins

People know they get great information from my Facebook page and my site and I will never abuse that trust. Thanks to everyone who stood up for the freedom to speak the truth and not be squashed by powerful commercial entities or individuals that want to cover up the truth and silence those of us who speak out.

So Your Dog Ignores You?

I got to thinking just how simple it should be to have a cooperative dog, so why do our dogs so often ignore us?

{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.

Balanced Dog Training: There’s Nothing “Balanced” About It

If I had to think of an example of a dog that was truly "balanced," it would be a dog that - regardless of age, breed or drive - was confident, had been guided into making the right choices, and was allowed to think and learn without constantly being corrected.

Not All Dogs Are Born To Run

I'm a huge proponent for giving your dog proper exercise. As a dog trainer and pet behavior expert, I see firsthand the negative consequences that ensue when dogs aren't adequately exercised both mentally and physically. But the reality is that not every dog is born to run.

What You Need to Know About Canine Influenza

A dog flu epidemic has blown into the Windy City, sickening over a thousand dogs and has been responsible for the death of at least five dogs since mid-March. Is your dog at risk?

Everyone is an Expert These Days!

There is no quicker way to cause an internet fight than to ask a dog behavior question on a board comprised of regular dog parents. The responses will range from the absurd to the dangerous.

iCalmDog Now Available in Positively Store!

The iCalmDog music player for dogs is now available in the Positively online store. This paw-sized portable music player comes with 4 hours of Through A Dog's Ear's clinically-tested music and is designed to reduce anxiety. Also available is a library of music and training protocols designed by Victoria Stilwell to combat separation anxiety, aggression and noise phobias.

What NOT To Do When Your Dog Is Lost

In a previous article on this site, I listed things to do when your dog is lost. Implementing each of the steps on the list will increase your chances in being reunited with your lost dog. However, there are also things that you shouldn’t do when searching for your lost dog.

Canine Noise Phobia Series

The Canine Noise Phobia Series (CNP) is a 4-CD compilation of specialized audio recordings and innovative training protocols specifically designed to reduce and prevent noise phobias and anxiety in dogs. “In my work as a dog trainer both on TV and in private practice over the past 15 years, I have seen countless dogs suffer Read More

Noise Phobias

Noise phobia is very common in dogs and may be triggered by a single experience or prolonged exposure to sounds that overwhelm the dog, causing anxiety, stress and fear. Sounds and experiences which may develop into phobias for dogs range from thunderstorm and fireworks to the sound of a baby crying. Regardless of the type Read More

Head Collars & No-Pull Harnesses

Head collars and harnesses are two effective and humane options for teaching your dog to walk well on a leash, and can be a valuable part of your training toolbox when working with a leash reactive dog. Harnesses There are three main types of harnesses-those that clip on the dog’s back: those that connect to Read More

Humane Discipline

Positive does not mean permissive. Discipline is an important part of the learning process, but the form of discipline used in positive training differs greatly from the types of discipline used in dominance training. Traditional trainers often argue that positive trainers do not believe in or effectively use appropriate discipline in training, but that is Read More

‘Red Zone’ Dogs

Positive training does not only work on small dogs with minor obedience issues – it is also by far the most effective way to treat severe anxiety and so called ‘red zone’ aggression cases. (The term ‘red zone’ has become synonymous when describing severely aggressive or reactive dogs.) On It’s Me or the Dog, her Read More

Health Knowledge

As a dog owner, there are many decisions you have to make related to your pet’s health. Should I get my dog spayed or neutered? Should I keep my dog on monthly preventatives? How should I groom my dog? Which vaccinations should my dog receive? These are just a few of the common questions pet Read More

Puppy Knowledge

Bringing home a new puppy is a fun and exciting time, but in order to avoid problems down the line and to ensure a lifetime of happiness and enrichment, you must do your research first! A puppy is a major responsibility and it is important to arm yourself with as much puppy knowledge as possible Read More

Book VSPDT Phone Consultation & Get Free Personalized Book!

For a limited time, book a phone or skype consulation with a VSPDT and receive a free personalized copy of Victoria's latest book, "Train Your Dog Positively." These consultations are a fantastic way to speak directly with one of the world's top dog trainers from the comfort of your own home. Book now to take Read More

The Fight For Lennox – A Year Later

Lennox is the poster child against a law that is fatally flawed and needs to be changed. His family continues to fight against BSL so that other innocent lives can be protected and so that other families don’t have to experience the pain of having a beloved dog taken away from them, deemed guilty and killed just because of the way he looks.