Posted on: May 20, 2019 - No Comments
There’s been a lot of discussion lately about the pros and cons of engaging (publicly or privately) with people in the dog world who hold views different from your own. This can be an especially thorny topic when the opposing (or at least not compatible) viewpoints relate to a core belief of yours – beliefs that we often safeguard and protect more dearly than anything else. This got me thinking about the best ways to handle such situations, and I figured I’d share my thoughts with you here.
Posted on: April 25, 2019 - No Comments
We're very excited to share the news that full episodes of It's Me or the Dog are now available on YouTube via the @ItsMeOrTheDog channel. It's been quite a while since we broke ground on that series back in the early 2000's, and I never would've guessed that we'd end up shooting over 100 episodes and have the show airing in over 200 countries.
Posted on: November 24, 2018 - No Comments
The Victoria Stilwell Academy just celebrated its third birthday, and we couldn't be prouder of the place it has quickly earned as an elite learning institution for aspiring dog trainers. VSA allows me the opportunity to scratch my teaching itch, and I truly love it.
Posted on: July 13, 2017 - No Comments
It’s understandable that people in the dog training world get so agitated when the word “dominance” is mentioned, even when used in the right context. The idea of dominance in dogs has been so misunderstood by some trainers in popular media for so long that it has now become a dirty word, such that even when trainers and behavior experts use the word correctly, they risk a backlash from people that are – let’s face it - exhausted from having to continually reeducate the public about what dominance really is and what it isn’t, particularly when so much damage has been done because of the way the word has been used by some people in the dog training world.
Posted on: June 26, 2017 - No Comments
I firmly believe that any decent trainer is always learning – we should never feel we know ‘enough’, and I thoroughly enjoy being inspired, educated and challenged by our amazing roster of presenters at this conference year after year. It has developed into one of the most sought-after dog behaviour experiences available in the UK, and I’m incredibly honoured to be able to bring such a diverse, passionate, educated, engaged, and dog-literate group of people together in the name of better understanding our canine companions each June.
Posted on: May 21, 2017 - 1 Comment
Since when does “just a minute” only apply to humans? We dogs say it too, except when we do, you humans get angry. You let us off the rope thing to go run around and play and then you ask us to come back at the most inconvenient of times, just when we are having the best fun – playing with other dogs or chasing small fluffies. When we don’t respond, you get mad and tell us how bad we are, but apparently you don’t understand that when we hear our name, look back at you and then continue with our game, we’re also saying “just a minute”. By the way…..how long is a minute?
Posted on: April 25, 2017 - No Comments
If now seems like the right time, let us help you on your journey. If you’ve been thinking of a career working with dogs, trust us – it’s worth it. Whether you’re just starting your working career or are stuck doing something you don’t love, join us this summer and allow yourself to chase your dreams. Enroll in the Victoria Stilwell Academy.
Posted on: March 1, 2017 - 10 Comments
First of all, I’ve certainly never referred to myself as a ‘purely positive’ dog trainer, but I’ve heard many others – usually pretty vocal opponents of humane modern dog training – label me and others with that description. It seems to be somewhat of a dog training unicorn, in that there are those who still Read More
Posted on: January 20, 2017 - No Comments
Just last week, we concluded another successful in-person intensive with the Victoria Stilwell Academy’s Dog Trainer Course students. As I sat there in the back of the room, I watched our awesome faculty member, Nichole Smith from Working With Dog, absolutely rocking this super-important lesson and content. Just about every day during our six-month course, Read More
Posted on: November 23, 2016 - 4 Comments
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.
Posted on: August 23, 2016 - 4 Comments
The loss of K-9 Eiko left our entire "Guardians of the Night" family in pieces, but seeing the positive impact he continues to have even after his death gives us all just a bit more peace.
Posted on: August 16, 2016 - No Comments
It’s not often you see a police officer buying a person ice cream from an ice cream truck, let alone an entire neighborhood, but that is exactly what Officer Shawn Humphreys, from the City of Lawrenceville Police Department, did when out on patrol last week.
Posted on: August 9, 2016 - No Comments
Police K-9 officer Sgt. Paul Corso of the Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department happened to be in the right place at the right time as a dramatic medical emergency unfolded on an Atlanta-bound flight.
Posted on: May 23, 2016 - No Comments
Our first class of students are past the halfway point in their Dog Trainer Course, registration is underway for VSA’s next US-based class this fall, and spaces are quickly filling up in our first UK-based class this September. And we’re just getting started!
Posted on: March 25, 2016 - 31 Comments
I’m writing this to clarify the events that led up to the bite I experienced from a police dog and to hopefully re-inject a bit of sanity into the online discussions surrounding the event.
Posted on: March 18, 2016 - 2 Comments
How can one expect the suits, whose business it is to look for ratings or financial success for their company, to stand up for the animals they're responsible for and take note of the thousands of voices that are telling them that what they are supporting is so wrong?
Posted on: November 2, 2015 - 1 Comment
I first met Ember on an elevator at the Arson Dog Recertification I was filming in Baton Rouge, LA. She greeted me with a typical Labrador smile and a wagging tail. I chatted with her handler, Captain Ross Holt, about her battle with cancer and how brave she was through her chemotherapy treatments...
Posted on: October 9, 2015 - 3 Comments
At long last, I am thrilled to announce the official launch of the Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training and Behavior!
Posted on: September 14, 2015 - 6 Comments
I often find that people think using the word "cue" instead of "command" in dog training is just a semantic difference that doesn't have any implication on the training process. I disagree.
Posted on: August 17, 2015 - 2 Comments
Of Dogs and Men is a powerful new documentary that explores the recent surge in law enforcement officials shooting dogs. I had to chance to chat with Director Michael Ozias about the film, and what went on both behind and in front of the camera.
Posted on: August 6, 2015 - 1 Comment
Some dogs may whine, cry, or bark in the crate, while others may go so far as causing real damage to a crate or a room. This type of behavior is often attributed to separation anxiety. But is that always the issue? Here are some training tips for dogs that don't do well being contained.
Posted on: June 2, 2015 - 8 Comments
When Allison Marks dropped off Colby, her 2-year-old Golden Retriever, for a routine grooming, she never could have imagined the tragedy that would ensue.
Posted on: May 13, 2015 - 10 Comments
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.
Posted on: May 11, 2015 - 1 Comment
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.
Posted on: April 27, 2015 - 2 Comments
A common theme I've heard from pet parents who fell victim to "bad egg" dog trainers is that they all had a feeling that something wasn't right. But they trusted their trainer (they were a professional after all, right?), and assumed they knew what they were doing.
Posted on: April 21, 2015 - No Comments
It's Earth Day! This is the one day of the year that we collectively think and talk about how to better care for our planet, and that includes caring for our four-legged friends! Here are some fun ideas on how to celebrate Earth Day in a pet-friendly way.
Posted on: March 19, 2015 - No Comments
The National Fire Dog Monument, a symbol of hope and honor for both law enforcement and citizens, was desecrated in a horrendous act of vandalism yesterday.