Animal Emotions and That Icky Sticky Fear

 “Lacking a shared language, emotions are perhaps our most effective means of cross-species communication. We can share our emotions, we can understand the language of feelings, and that's why we form deep and enduring social bonds with many other beings. Emotions are the glue that binds.” ― Bekoff   Ants teach.  Earthworms make decisions.  Rats …

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Doin’ The Displacement

AUG, 2015 “Whenever you are examining someone else, you are bound to learn many interesting things of which you were not previously aware.” ―Lemony Snicket Do you have a long list of things to do, but even more reasons not to do them? I do.  We all do. We have lists of must-do today, gotta-do …

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Dude, Can’t You Take a Hint?

Are you that kind of pet owner or animal lover that doesn't know when to back off?  I used to be one of those people with my animal companions at home. A few years ago I went to a workshop for Reactive / Fearful Dogs hosted by Grisha Stewart of Ahimsa Dog Training​. One of the …

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Growls Are Better Than the Alternative

May 2015 Growls Are Good.  Let me be clearer: Growling is good when compared to not growling, and biting instead. In this post I will share with you what I have learned over the years concerning The Growl.   Why I Don't Recommend Punishing a Dog for Growling.   When a dog growls he/she is asking …

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Why Training Is Essential

Training is not a luxury, but a key component to good animal care. There are many reasons people choose to train an animal.  Some people train animals to avoid being bitten, attacked, or crushed by them.  Some people train animals to avoid being their next meal.  Some people train animals to make their lives easier …

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Try Giving Instead of Taking

There is a very common myth that taking an animal’s food or toys away while they are enjoying them, will teach the animal to allow anyone to come up and take things from them.  This “technique” at best, is usually viewed as an annoyance to the animal, but at worst it can trigger or create …

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Butt Sniffing 101

Butt Sniffing.  It's gross to most humans, but it's very important to our canine comrades. Derriere sniffing is just one of the many fascinating forms of chemical communication in the animal kingdom.  Animals all around the world use chemical communication to communicate.  Pheromones are the source of this communication! Pheromones are chemicals released by living …

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Stimulate Them!

Animal enrichment promotes naturalistic behaviors that stimulate the mind and increases physical activity.  It reduces stress and therefore promotes overall health by increasing an animal's perception of control over their environment and by occupying their time.  While working for a decade as an Enrichment Coordinator for various animal sections at the Audubon Zoo, I learned that …

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