Tag Archives: aggression

Dog Training is Like Your Retirement Account, an Investment

Posted on: August 5, 2015 - No Comments

You will see the returns of your effort by sticking with the program for the long haul. If we want to see a change in our dog’s behavior we have to do the work, simple as that.

How To Change How A Dog Feels About Scary Stuff: Step Two

Posted on: May 26, 2015 - No Comments

Many dogs are constantly scared and startled by objects or events in their environment. Sometimes we have control over those things, often we don’t, but we can still help the dog learn to feel better, safer and more comfortable, around them.

Can (and Should) Every Dog Be Saved?

Posted on: May 18, 2015 - 44 Comments

Many perfectly wonderful dogs with lovely temperaments are being euthanized regularly for space while extremists spend time battling online about why one dog that mauled a child should get another chance.

Positively Dog Training Episode 401

Posted on: April 2, 2015 - 1 Comment

Victoria and Holly catch up on what they’ve been up to. They talk about Victoria’s two new web series, and what Holly’s been up to with CNN. Also on the topic list are dog shows and the various controversies at Crufts, and stress-relieving training tool Adaptil. And you won’t want to miss this episode’s Ask Victoria questions.

Why I Sympathize With the Grooming Dog Trainer

Posted on: January 16, 2015 - No Comments

This is not about dog training and behavior. This is about human sympathy. And a mission. And justice. A couple of days ago, I was forwarded a public YouTube video of a dog trainer working with a dog who had previously bitten and shown aggression, especially while being bathed and groomed. I'm writing this to express my sympathy for the trainer. I mean that without an ounce of insincerity – I truly feel bad for him and what he has gone through since the video of him working with that dog has gone viral.

How Not To Groom a Biting Dog

Posted on: January 14, 2015 - 24 Comments

Every now and then a video crosses my desk from people either amazed, dismayed or generally seeking my opinion on something. Such was the case when I was shared this video, and I felt it was a great learning opportunity to highlight some of the misconceptions and ‘teaching moments’ of what should not be done when teaching a dog with a history of biting while being groomed.

iCalmDog Now Available in Positively Store!

Posted on: November 19, 2014 - No Comments

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.

Letting Go of Restraint

Posted on: November 4, 2014 - No Comments

With a little bit of training any dog can work cooperatively with you at the vet. VSPDT Sara McLoudrey talks about how she trained her dog to cooperate at the vet without the use of restraint.

Positively Success Story: Inky

Posted on: November 2, 2014 - No Comments

One evening in December 2011, my wife, Karen, was picking up our lab Lily from day care and noticed a scruffy little black mutt in the corner of a pen. His name was Inky and he needed a home. Karen was told that Inky had been a stray puppy, that he and his brother had Read More

So Much Work To Do…

Posted on: October 19, 2014 - No Comments

I was forwarded an article which basically claimed that while positive reinforcement was a nice tool for training nice pups, it was not a strong enough or effective enough tool to deal with aggression or so-called 'red zone' dogs. It is time once and for all to put an end to this myth, especially when the arguments being used to support it are so painfully inaccurate and the supposed claims are so completely at odds with what behavioral science has already proven to us time and time again.

Are Domestic Dogs Losing the Ability to Get Along with Each Other?

Posted on: October 12, 2014 - 40 Comments

VSPDT Laura Brody discusses the topic of dog socialization and why modern domesticated dogs are showing more signs of dog-dog aggression than ever before.

Positively Success Story: Stella

Posted on: October 1, 2014 - No Comments

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

How I Stopped My Dog’s Leash Aggression

Posted on: August 17, 2014 - 15 Comments

If you’ve ever had a leash reactive dog, you know the feeling of dread that I had before going on a walk. Learn how I stopped my dog's leash aggression--positively.

When aggressive behavior does not mean an aggressive dog

Posted on: June 11, 2014 - No Comments

Imagine sitting in study hall, cramming for your math final the next period. You’re focused. Determined. Then, the boy behind you starts smacking his gum. You need to learn these equations! You try to shut out the noise, but then he starts tapping your shoulder with his pen. You whirl around – it was an Read More

Merseyside Police Seize and Kill Legally Exempt Dogs

Posted on: April 27, 2014 - No Comments

I am appalled at this latest story coming from Liverpool.  This is Breed Specific Legislation at its worst and yet another example of innocent dogs being taken away from their owners and euthanised without due process.  I support law enforcement in many ways but this kind of policing is barbaric, especially when many of the Read More

“Unemployed Dogs” Are a Growing Trend

Posted on: December 17, 2013 - 6 Comments

I often use the term "unemployed dogs" to describe four-legged friends who live their lives with little exercise or mental stimulation. While most dogs don't need to be actual "working" dogs, it's a real tragedy when dogs are left alone most of their lives and are rarely given the chance to exercise--mentally or physically. A Read More

Victoria Talks About Aggressive Dogs on HLN

Posted on: November 16, 2013 - 4 Comments

Victoria was featured on "News Now" with Mike Galanos on HLN, where she worked with a dog aggressive Jack Russell terrier named Sadie Mae, and a timid shepherd mix named Angelina. The two dogs met on-camera for the first time, and Victoria walked Mike through the two dogs' body language and the signals to look Read More

Do Some Dogs Need a Heavier Hand?

Posted on: November 8, 2013 - 4 Comments

It never fails—someone always says it. In a recent online discussion about a trainer known for using less-than-gentle methods, someone made a comment that sounded a lot like this: “Positive training is fine for smaller dogs and puppies, and maybe even some adults, but there are some dogs that need a heavier hand.” Really? Because that sounds an awful lot like justification for jerking, yanking, shocking, and other things done to dogs in the name of training.

The sexually frustrated parrot: a man-made phenomenon

Posted on: August 12, 2013 - 22 Comments

According to a recent study, men think about sex 18 times a day, while women think about it 10 times a day. Should we be surprised that most parrots that are raised in the wild in large very social flocks also are obsessed with sex? I recently attended the annual conference of the Association of Read More

Victoria Discusses Dealing with Aggressive Dogs on Examiner.com

Posted on: June 27, 2013 - No Comments

Victoria was featured in the “Pets” section of Examiner.com, which went live on June 21, 2013. In the feature entitled, “Victoria Stilwell speaks out about dog attacks and more,” Victoria gave her expert advice on to how to deal with aggressive dogs following a recent fatal dog attack on June 18, 2013.

A Fatal Dog Attack – How Missing Key Signs Led to Tragedy

Posted on: June 20, 2013 - 27 Comments

Who was to blame for the recent fatal attack by a pitbull on a six year old boy in California? The dog, the child or the parent or relatives that were responsible for the child’s care?

Why Are Dogs Aggressive

Posted on: May 23, 2013 - 22 Comments

Defining what aggression means is not easy, because there are so many variables associated with what is a highly complex behavior. But by investigating the function served by an aggressive act as well as why it occurs and what result it achieves from the dog’s point of view, we can begin to gain a better understanding.

Puppy Socialization and Vaccinations/Titers Belong Together

Posted on: April 7, 2012 - 3 Comments

Pet parents are now aware of the necessity of providing dog/dog socialization opportunities for their puppies. Nevertheless, when and how to do it is still misunderstood largely because many veterinarians, as well as breeders and pet-store owners, advise new pet parents to avoid socializing their new puppy with other dogs until the age of four Read More

Positively Dog Training Episode 207

Posted on: November 24, 2011 - No Comments

Victoria & Holly discuss Thanksgiving traditions and safety tips in this holiday episode. They're also joined by VSPDT trainer Daphne Robert-Hamilton for Ask Victoria, and Holly tries to stump Victoria in Animal Academy.

Dog/Dog Aggression

Posted on: July 2, 2011 - 12 Comments

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

Ask Victoria – Akita doesn’t like strangers or being groomed

Posted on: April 6, 2011 - 14 Comments

April 5, 2011 Karen from North Wales writes:  We have a 22-month old Akita and he hates being groomed or bathed – he snaps and snarls.  He is adorable in every other way at home but he’s not great with strangers – he bares his teeth if they want to pet him.  He has never Read More

How to Greet a Dog

Posted on: October 30, 2010 - 2 Comments

“My dog is great with people most of the time but sometime when strangers rush up to him when we’re on our walks, he backs off and growls. The behavior seems to be getting worse. Why does he do this?”