Nature vs Nurture in Dog Behaviour

A study was published back in May that weighed in on the nature-vs-nurture debate. The researchers reviewed 50 years worth of twin studies and determined that who you are is basically 50-50. 50% environment, 50% genes. This was a human study, not a dog study, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to assume that a similar outcome would be true of dogs. In fact, I might venture to say, with a, “I am not a scientist and basically am just

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How to Greet a Dog

I love dogs a lot. A lot a lot. I do not often greet them, however. So I guess the first tip in “Greeting dogs 101” is “Don’t.” This is a bit of an exaggeration of course. Every situation is different and sometimes it is fine to say hello to a dog, but when in doubt, don’t bother. Illustration courtesy of doggiedrawings.net Here are some situations where I definitely will not greet a dog: The dog is ignoring me. No

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My (possibly neurotic) dog walking philosophy

I spend a lot of time thinking about the walks I take Betsy on. In my mind, there are three kinds of “walks” we can go for, and I try to make sure she gets a balance of these three: Socialization/Brain Challenge Walks In which I take Betsy to locations where she is exposed to a variety of different and interesting things. Usually lots of people, sometimes other dogs, skateboards, maybe horses or other interesting things. I might walk her

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Rewarding Good Choices

I think I touched on this briefly before in Five ways to enrich your dog’s life, where I mentioned teaching your dog to lie down on the floor instead of counter surfing. The principle behind it is instead of asking your dog for a behaviour and then rewarding them when they do it, you need to catch your dog choosing to do something without being asked, and rewarding them for making good choices. A lot of dog training is simply

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