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The Myth of Low-Level Stim E-collar Training

May 12, 2018Category : Articles

Lately, I’ve been noticing that the training industry has gotten  e-collar happy. I’ve been seeing a big influx of dogs that were started on e-collars. Their owners come to Nitro K-9 for a variety of reasons. Many dogs are fine off leash, but end up leash reactive. Others have become so desensitized to the e-collar…

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01.

So, You Think You Want a Protection Dog?

January 20, 2018Category : Articles

Day in and day out, I see what happens when people get dogs for protection and aren’t prepared for the realities of living with working dogs. Unfortunately, it’s a growing trend, particularly in a day and age when everyone is looking for something new, exciting, and different. When they get into trouble with the dogs—which they almost…

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02.

Solving Aggression and Anxiety with Obedience Training

August 31, 2017Category : Articles

There’s an old joke that the only thing that two dog trainers can agree on is that the third dog trainer is wrong. There’s a lot of truth to this. Once you get to a certain level of competence, we all have our preferred methods and tools, and ways of working. But you know what?…

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03.

Are Veterinary Behaviorists Qualified to Work with Dogs?

May 27, 2017Category : Articles

Last week, a woman came for a consultation for her Schutzhund 3 working line GSD. She had bought the dog from Germany, was unequipped to handle him, and –no surprise—the dog had started lunging, barking, and snapping at people. The owners came to see me because they had gone to a veterinary behaviorist and, again…

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Why I Use Prong Collars on Every Dog

April 18, 2017Category : Articles

Right now, I am working with a lovely woman and her lab. The other day, she asked me, “Steve, why is it that when you pull the leash while my dog is wearing the prong collar, my dog’s tail wags? This is the opposite of what I’d expect. I mean, if someone told me that…

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05.

Relationship: The Ultimate Dog Motivator

March 7, 2017Category : Articles

I don’t use food or toys when training foundational obedience. Don’t get me wrong. I am not averse to using either when it is appropriate. For instance, there’s nothing wrong with starting off using food with very young puppies. Using food can be useful for gaining trust with new, shy dogs. And when it comes…

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06.

Dominance Deniers Are Killing Our Dogs

October 18, 2016Category : Articles

**This article was hacked and almost destroyed. Suppressing information is never the way.** Dominance Deniers are Killing Dogs I’ve been thinking about an article about dominance for a long time. I keep seeing all this nonsense about how dominance doesn’t exist and how dogs aren’t pack animals.  I was originally going to write an article…

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07.

Harnesses, Drive, and Playing with Fire

April 4, 2016Category : Articles

A huge number of people end up at Nitro K-9 because their dogs won’t stop pulling. The vast majority of them have their dogs in harnesses. And of those, most also have their dogs in NO-PULL harnesses. You all know I loathe Gentle Leaders—but I’m pretty down on harnesses too. If you want the truth,…

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08.

Kibble is killing our dogs

January 8, 2016Category : Articles

I don’t talk about it as much as I should, but nutrition is one of the cornerstones of my training philosophy. Just as people don’t function as they should when they’re eating poor diets, the same is true of our dogs. The reality is that kibble is not healthy for our dogs in the best…

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09.

How to fail your dog: don’t practice

August 9, 2015Category : Articles

For all of my truly wonderful clients and their dogs who work their tails off—which is the majority of you—this post isn’t directed at you. You guys are great. And you know who you are. Do you know the number one reason dog trainers get burned out? Here’s a hint: it’s not the dogs. The…

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