blog

How a dog named Patty sparked a lifesaving revolution for dogs with behavior challenges

March 28, 2017

Are there dogs in your shelter or rescue who you honestly think can’t be adopted because of behavior problems? There might be a simple solution — and if it works for them, they’ll have a dog named Patty to thank. Kristen Auerbach, Deputy Chief Animal Services Officer at the Austin Animal Center, told Patty’s story… Learn More

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Introducing Your Foster Dog to Strangers in Your House

March 2017

This short video, on introducing your foster dog to a stranger at your house, will demonstrate easy and ultimately rewarding steps to help your foster dog greet new people in a safe and relaxed manner. Learn More

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Bringing Your Shy Foster Dog Home

March 2017

To help start a foster family of a shy dog get off on the right foot, er paw, this short video will provide helpful tips for bringing your foster dog to your house for the very first time.

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Study: Audiobooks outperform music at reducing stress in shelter dogs

March 1, 2017

By now you’ve probably seen the research showing dogs in shelters are quieter when they’re listening to soft rock, reggae, and (at least for short periods) classical music. You may have seen programs where children come in and read to shelter dogs. So here’s the question: Do dogs like listening to audiobooks? The answer is… Learn More

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How foster homes set shelter pets up for behavioral success

January 5, 2016

Foster homes can provide a valuable safe harbor for stressed, fearful, or anxious shelter pets, as well as a place where they can learn behaviors that will maximize their chances for successful adoption into a permanent home. For that to happen, however, the foster family must also provide appropriate support for the easing of fears… Learn More

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Getting Big Dogs Out of the Shelter via Canine Good Citizen Training

Marian Cannell and Amy LewisFebruary 2015

Through a partnership with Best Friends Animal Society, Austin Pets Alive! embarked on a six-month pilot program to test the effectiveness of Canine Good Citizen (CGC) Training on adoption rates.  The results have been very good and show a clear adoption rate difference between dogs who undergo training and those who don’t.  Learn More

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Saving All the Little Dogs: Small Dog Behavior Issues

Faith Wright and Deaven WilsonFebruary 2015

Do you know how many small breed dogs are euthanized in your community shelter?  In Austin, Texas in 2008, it was many more than would have been expected (roughly 500).   Do you know that nearly ALL of them can be saved and although many are marked "aggressive”, they rarely are? Learn More

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Taking Troubled Tabbies from Naughty to Nice

Sara Cookson and Kristin Hill February 2015

Every rescue encounters troubled cats with issues that go beyond tortitude. The Austin Pet’s Alive! Cat Behavior Team will teach you how to prevent behavior problems before they start. Learn More

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How to Reduce Stress in Long-Stay Shelter Cats

Kathy Mills, DVMDecember 2014

Learn more about enrichment and stress reduction for shelter cats, and share training information with your volunteers or staff. Check out the webcasts, videos and articles. Learn More

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Behavior Modification for Cats in Shelters and Foster Homes

Sara L. Bennett, DVM, MS, DACVBOctober 2014

Getting a leopard to change his spots sometimes seems easier than getting a domestic cat to change her behavior. Fortunately, the science of feline behavior modification has come a long way in recent years, leaving animal shelters, rescue groups, fosters and adopters with plenty of new tools to help cats become happier and well-adjusted companions. Learn More

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Vet to Vet: Efficacy of Synthetic Feline Interdigital Semiochemical (FIS)

Katherine Polak, DVM, MPH, MS, DACVPMMay 2014

Discussion of research on the efficacy of synthetic FIS, or feline interdigital semiochemicals, which may be useful as a preventative measure for inappropriate scratching behavior. Learn More

webcast

Helping Cats Who Hiss and Hide: Assessments, Behavior Modification and Re-Homing Strategies for Shy and Fearful Cats

Sheila Segurson D'Arpino, DVM, DACVBNovember 2013

Can cats who are shy and fearful in the shelter still get adopted? Yes, says board certified veterinary behavior specialist Dr. Sheila D'Arpino. Feline behavior while in a shelter is not always a good representation of that same cat's behavior in less stressful surroundings. Proper housing, handling, and, if needed, behavior modification can turn that hissing and hiding cat into a beloved family pet.

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Helping Cats Who Hiss and Hide: Pre-Webcast Survey Results

November 2013

On November 14, 2013, Maddie's Institute® presented the webcast Helping Cats Who Hiss and Hide: Assessment, Behavior Modification and Re-Homing Strategies for Shy and Fearful Cats, with Dr. Sheila D'Arpino, a board-certified veterinary behaviorist. Those who registered for the live webcast filled out a short questionnaire regarding their own experiences with shy and fearful cats. Learn More

webcast

Shelter Dog Mod Squad: Identifying and Modifying Canine Behavior Problems in Shelters

Shelia (Segurson) D'Arpino, DVM, DACVBDecember 2012

How can you get jumpy, mouthy or fearful shelter dogs adopted? By joining the "Shelter Dog Mod Squad" and learning how to identify and modify those behavior problems! Learn More

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Therapeutic Insights for Treating Animals Rescued from Puppy Mills and Hoarding Situations

Franklin D. McMillan, DVM, DACVIMAugust 2012

Shelters and adopters of animals rescued from puppy mills and hoarding situations were surveyed to inquire about the methods used to help rehabilitate the animals. Specific attention was paid to what was most effective, what was least effective and what caused a setback in the animal's progress toward recovery. Learn More

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Behavior Modification in the Shelter: When and How

Kelley Bollen, MS, CABCJuly 2012

This talk assists shelters with the identification of animals and situations where behavior modification has the opportunity to produce positive results. Learn More

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Saving Lives with Behavior Modification: It's Easier and Cheaper than you Think!

Sheila Segurson D'Arpino, DVM, DACVBMay 2012

Think you can't afford to treat the behavior problems of dogs in your shelter? Think it's too difficult and time-consuming? Think you don't have the staff or the space to work with these kinds of issues? Sheila Segurson d'Arpino, DVM, DACVB, Senior Applied Animal Behaviorist for the Center for Shelter Dogs in Boston, walks you through easy, cost-effective methods that have saved thousands of animal lives. Learn More

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Seeing Dogs as Individuals Key to Matching

November 2011

An innovative program to evaluate and rehabilitate shelter dogs as individuals leads the way in helping dogs with all kinds of behavior challenges find lasting, loving homes. Learn More

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Providing Behavioral Care for Treatable Dogs and Cats - Easier and Cheaper Than You Think

Sheila Segurson D'Arpino, DVM, DACVBMay 2011

Think you can't afford to treat the behavior problems of dogs and cats in your shelter? Think it's too difficult and time-consuming? Dr. D'Arpino walks through easy, cost-effective methods that have saved thousands of animal lives. Learn More

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'Treating' Shelter Dogs: Healthy, Shelter-Friendly Treats for Our Canine Residents, Part 1

January 2011

The do’s and dont’s of giving treats to shelter dogs. Learn More

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The Association of Shelter Veterinarians Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters

December 2010

The Association of Shelter Veterinarians produced this comprehensive document to address the lack of guidelines for standards of care currently in existence for animals in shelters. The Guidelines are divided into twelve sections: Management and Record Keeping; Facility Design and Environment; Population Management; Sanitation; Medical Health and Physical Well-being; Behavioral Health and Mental Well-being; Group Housing; Animal Handling; Euthanasia; Spaying and Neutering; Animal Transport; and Public Health. Learn More

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Open Paw: Saving Pets, Benefiting Shelters, Educating the Community

2006

The brainchild of Certified Pet Dog Trainer Kelly Gorman, and world renowned animal behaviorist, Dr. Ian Dunbar, Open Paw teaches dogs their ABC's and helps speed them into new homes. Learn More

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Behavior Problems And Long-Term Housing of Shelter Dogs

Jean Donaldson2000

Jean Donaldson, renowned author, trainer and animal behavior expert, talks about how to deal with barrier-related barking and aggression, housetraining regression, separation anxiety and other behaviors common in shelter dogs. Learn More