article

Playing with Your Dog- Part One

August 2019

Who doesn't like to play? Dogs play because it's fun, but it also helps them to develop coordination, strength, and confidence.

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article

What To Do If Your New Dog Is Aggressive

August 2019

Aggression is a form of communication. Keep pets and people safe by preventing aggression from occurring.

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article

What to Do if Your New Dog Won't Eat

August 2019

For the first day or two after arriving at a new home, a dog may not eat. Lack of appetite can have multiple causes, such as environmental change, stress, depression, illness, food allergy or a change in food.

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article

Why Train Your Dog?

August 2019

Training your dog to respond to cues establishes a common language that will help you communicate with your dog. Having a common language will make it easier for you both to bond.

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Say Please

August 2019

A dog who sits every time they want something (e.g. attention from people) is much easier to live with than a dog that hasn't learned to say please and jumps up or barks when they want something.

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Settle

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog to settle down and be quiet when you cue them to "settle". With this cue, your dog can readjust their body but must stay lying down in one place.

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Sit

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog to put their rear end on the floor when asked to "sit".

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Touch

August 2019

Goal: The cue "touch" (hand targeting) directs your dog to target your palm with their nose.

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Walk on a Loose Leash

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog how to change their stride to stay close to you on a loose leash without pulling. It will take time, patience, and consistency.

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article

Dog - The Right Rewards

August 2019

Reward-based training is humane, fun and helps you build a communication style with your dog. Reward based training also bonds your dog more closely to you and your family.

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article

Ways To Train Your Dog

August 2019

The best way to train your dog is by using humane methods that focus on rewarding dogs for good behavior. Here are few ways to train without pain or fear.

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article

How to Handle the Leash

August 2019

A leash is a great management and training aid for your dog. The leash keeps your dog safe, preventing your dog from running away from you and into traffic, chasing other dogs and small animals, and jumping on people.

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article

Reducing Stress During Handling

August 2019

Some dogs might like to be petted, but get stressed when you try to brush them, clean their ears, and/or hold their paws. Be patient with your new dog and teach them how to feel safe around you.

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article

Reducing Your Dog's Stress

August 2019

Review Assessing Your Dog's Stress for behavioral and body language indicators of stress. You can help your dog by modifying the environment slightly and the way you and others behave around them to help them cope with stress.

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article

Scent Games for Dogs

August 2019

Dogs rely on their sense of smell to identify the world. Imagine how much fun you and your dog will have if you encourage your dog to find stuff you need or a game to keep them occupied.

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article

Teaching Your Dog To Stay

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog to remain in a sit, down or stand with the cue "stay." When and where to use "stay".

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Come When Called

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog to come close to you when you give the cue "come."

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Down

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog lie down on the ground when you give the cue "down."

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article

Teaching Your Dog To Drop It

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog to drop or let go of objects in their mouth with the cue "drop it."

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Go to Bed or Mat

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog how to go to their bed or mat and lie down.

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article

Teaching Your Dog to Leave It

August 2019

Goal: Teach your dog to ignore things you don't want them to have or pay attention to with the cue "leave it."

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article

Introducing Your New Dog to Your Dogs

August 2019

Dog relationships are like people relationships. Some dogs will become playmates, others will enjoy the companionship of another dog and others just aren't interested in other dogs.

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article

Playing with Your Dog- Part Two

August 2019

Playing is fun, but it can also relieve stress, provide exercise, teach self-control and instill confidence. Follow the tips below to encourage your dog to play.

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article

Preparing Your Home for a New Dog

August 2019

Before bringing a dog home, prepare carefully. There's much to consider, including what rules to set for your new dog, what equipment you'll need and what questions to ask the shelter/rescue group, foster coordinator or your veterinarian.

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article

Introducing Your Dog to New Dogs

August 2019

Introductions between your new dog and unfamiliar dogs can be easy, but other times it may be challenging. The best results come from being slow and careful.

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article

Introducing Your New Dog to Cats

August 2019

Introducing a new dog to a resident cat can be challenging and should be done slowly and carefully. With time, many dogs and cats can learn to coexist peacefully, become playmates and even friends!

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article

Introducing Your New Dog to People

August 2019

If your dog enjoys meeting new people, follow the tips below to help those greetings be successful.

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article

Improving How Your Dog Responds to Cues

August 2019

Incorporate the 3 D's (distractions, distance and duration) into training each cue into a well trained behavior. Here are ways you can help your dog learn how to respond to cues the way you want them to!

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blog

Think outside the box to get a cat to urinate inside the litter box

October 10, 2019

This guest post is written by Stefanie Sacripante, Director of NoVa Cats Advocacy, Inc. Sacripante has been using social media to give voice to overlooked adult cats in shelters, rescues, and foster homes in the Northern Virginia region since 2014. When cats urinate in places other than the litterbox and once medical issues are ruled… Learn More

article

Getting to Know Your New Dog - Part 1: Introductions to Your Home and Family

August 2019

Becoming a member of a new family, moving to a new home, and making new friends can be an exciting and memorable time for your dog, but it can also be stressful. Here are some tips to help ease the transition.

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article

Getting to Know Your New Dog - Part 2 Expanding Your New Dog's Horizons

August 2019

Once your new dog is comfortable with your home and family, you can begin to slowly introduce them to new people and environments. Always pay attention to your dog's body language, as new experiences can sometimes be stressful.

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article

Getting Your Dog's Attention

August 2019

Teaching your dog to make eye contact with you is a great foundation behavior. If your dog is making eye contact and paying attention to you they are less likely to pull on leash, bark at people or dogs, or sniff and eat things off the ground.

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article

Helping Your Dog Adjust to a New Home

August 2019

Your new dog might need a few weeks to months to completely adjust to their new home, depending on the new environment and the dog's personality. This is normal - it's important for you to respond appropriately and help your new dog adjust.

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article

Children and Dogs - How to Keep Interactions Safe

August 2019

Children and dogs can be great, lifelong friends, but it is up to us as their guardians to keep their interactions safe. Children may not be able to read a dog's stressed body language, and injuries can occur.

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article

Dogs Riding in Cars - Safe Transport

August 2019

Many dogs need time to get used to car rides; it should be done slowly and carefully. Here are some tips for traveling safely.

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article

Food-Dispensing Toys for Dogs

August 2019

By offering your dogs meals in a food-dispensing toy, your dog has something to play with, instead of your furniture or favorite shoes and they get exercise.

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blog

Shelter dog behavior assessments not reliable, reports ASPCA

September 26, 2019

This post originally ran on June 28, 2018. We wanted to share again because we think this topic is very important.  An in-shelter behavior assessment is not a reliable way to determine whether dogs will or won’t be safe in adoptive homes, reports a new ASPCA position statement. Instead, such evaluations need to be based… Learn More

article

Crate Training Your Dog or Puppy

August 2019

Crate training can help your dog in many ways, such as providing them with a safe place to rest when unsupervised, keeps them from chewing human belongings, and aids in potty training.

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article

Dog - Basic Training - Level 2

August 2019

Your dog knows several basic commands. You can start using these skills to teach more advanced concepts to your dog.

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article

Cat Pheromones

August 2019

Cats communicate through natural messages released in the air called pheromones. Pheromones for cats are commercially available and can have many positive behavioral and physiological effects.

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article

Reducing Outdoor Stressors for Indoor Cats

August 2019

Seeing the outdoors can be entertaining and engaging for an indoor cat, or it may cause stress. Because even the sight of another cat, when not properly addressed, can evolve into serious problems, it is important to assess and tackle any change in your cat's behavior right away.

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article

Cats and Kids

August 2019

Cats can greatly enrich your children's lives and teach them many valuable lessons about the human-animal bond. There are a few things to consider to make this endeavor a success for your family as well as for your cat, and to ensure happy and safe interactions for all.

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article

Assessing Your Dog's Stress

August 2019

It's important to recognize signs of stress in your new dog as you get to know them. Some dogs will adjust to stressful situations more easily than others.

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article

Dog - Basic Training - Level 1

August 2019

Basic Dog Training - Level 1

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article

Adopting a Fearful Cat

August 2019

Most cats are fearful at first in a new environment and will adjust in time. However, if fear isn't addressed, it can develop into serious behavioral and health problems.

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article

Cat - Hiding Behavior

August 2019

Hiding behavior can be a normal in cats and give them a sense of security. Cats can hide to rest, to enjoy their favorite spot, or if they are scared.

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article

Keeping Your Cat Happy Indoors

August 2019

It is important to provide enrichment for cats living indoors. Enrichment makes the indoors more exciting and provides an outlet for excessive energy.

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article

Should I Let my Cat Outside?

August 2019

Indoor cats and outdoor cats encounter different challenges and risks. Whatever your choice is, it's important to keep your cat healthy and safe.

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article

How Can I Keep Cats Out of My Yard?

August 2019

Seeing the outdoors can be entertaining and engaging for an indoor cat, or it may cause stress. If you only have one indoor cat, observe carefully to see if unfamiliar outdoor cats are visible and causing them stress.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward a Dog when Outdoors

August 2019

Aggression toward a dog when being outdoors can be a normal survival response. However, always take any aggressive episodes seriously.

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article

Cat - Afraid of Anything New

August 2019

Fear is common and a perfectly normal, innate, and adaptive behavior in all animals. However, if fear isn't addressed, it can develop into serious behavioral and health problems.

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article

Cat - Afraid of Noises

August 2019

Fear is common and a perfectly normal, innate, and adaptive behavior in all animals. However, if fear isn't addressed, it can develop into serious behavioral and health problems.

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article

Introducing Your Cat to New People

August 2019

Have a plan in place for when you have visitors and want them to meet your cat. Make sure to balance your guest's enthusiasm with your cat's needs.

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article

Introducing Cats and Dogs

August 2019

With time, many cats and dogs can live together in peace. The key is to have carefully managed introductions. Don't rush your pets into anything that they are not comfortable with.

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article

Introducing Cats to Other Cats

August 2019

Some cat-to-cat introductions go smoothly, while others may take weeks or months before the cats co-exist with each other. The best way to do this is to go as slowly as necessary, and make every interaction a positive one.

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article

Introducing Cats and Kids

August 2019

The first few days in a new home are often quite stressful for any cat and, on the other hand, very exciting for a child! Make sure to balance your child's enthusiasm for spending time with your kitty with their need for adjustment and alone time.

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article

Helping a Shy or Fearful Cat Adjust to Your Home

August 2019

Fear is common and a perfectly normal, innate, and adaptive behavior in all animals. Be proactive in managing your cat's fearfulness or shyness.

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article

Cat - Fear of New People

August 2019

Fear of unfamiliar people is common and can be seen in all cats. Cats may need some time to adjust to a new home and new people.

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article

Cat - Afraid of Children

August 2019

Children can be overwhelming to cats. Fear in the presence of children is common. However, if fear isn't addressed, it can develop into serious behavioral and health problems.

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article

Cat - Afraid of Familiar Dogs

August 2019

Fear of a dog in the same household can be a symptom of an underlying problem. Always take it seriously.

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article

Cat - Afraid of New Dogs

August 2019

Fear of an unfamiliar dog is common, but can be a symptom of an underlying problem. Always take it seriously.

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article

Cats - Afraid of Familiar Cats

August 2019

Fear of other cats in the household can be a normal and adaptive behavior, but can lead to more serious problems. Always take it seriously.

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article

Cats - Afraid of New Cats

August 2019

Fear of unfamiliar cats can be a normal and adaptive behavior, but can lead to more serious problems. Always take it seriously.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Disturbed by a Cat while Resting or Sleeping

August 2019

Aggression toward another cat when disturbed while sleeping can be a normal startle or even survival response. However, always take any aggressive episodes seriously.

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article

Why is My Cat Afraid of Me?

August 2019

A newly adopted or fostered cat, or even a cat that has been in the home for a while, can be scared of you for various reasons.

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article

Cats Who Are Afraid of People They Know

August 2019

Some cats behave fearfully even in the presence of familiar people. They may feel scared if they can't get away from the person when being approached.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Chased by a Cat

August 2019

Aggression toward another cat when being chased can be normal survival behavior or it can be a symptom of an underlying problem. However, always take aggressive episodes seriously.

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article

Cat - Aggression Toward Dogs During Play

August 2019

Play between cats and dogs can be fun for both species. However, cats that have not been socialized with dogs from an early age will almost always behave defensively.

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article

Cat - Aggression During Play with Other Cats

August 2019

When dealing with aggression between two cats that appear to be playing, it is important to understand that play behavior is natural, especially in kittens.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Disturbed by a Dog while Resting or Sleeping

August 2019

Aggression towards a dog when disturbed while sleeping can be a normal startle or even a survival response. However, always take any aggressive episodes seriously.

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article

Cat Aggression When Approached By People

August 2019

Cats don't speak our language, so often aggression is the only way they can communicate to us that they are uncomfortable. Fear is the most common reason for aggression./p>

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article

Managing Fear Aggression in Cats

August 2019

Fear is a debilitating feeling and can lead to very serious behavioral issues in cats. It is an underlying reason for aggression and always needs to be taken seriously.

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article

Cat Aggression when Approached by a Dog

August 2019

Aggression towards a dog when approached can be a normal survival response. However, always take it seriously as it can lead to serious fights and injuries.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Approached by a Cat

August 2019

Aggression towards another cat when being approached can be a symptom of an underlying problem. However, always take aggressive episodes seriously.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Reprimanded

August 2019

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article

Cat - Aggression when Chased by a Dog

August 2019

Aggression towards a dog when being chased can be a normal survival response. However, always take aggressive episodes seriously.

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article

Cat Aggression Towards Familiar Dogs

August 2019

Aggression towards a dog in the same household can be a symptom of an underlying problem. Always take it seriously.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward New Dogs

August 2019

Aggression toward a new dog can lead to serious injuries to the dog, but also to the cat and should always be taken seriously.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Touched or Petted

August 2019

When cats display aggression when touched or petted, it can stem from many different motivations. It always needs to be taken seriously.

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article

Cat - Aggression when Brushed or Groomed

August 2019

When cats display aggression when brushed or groomed, it can stem from many different motivations. It always needs to be taken seriously.

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article

Cats - Overstimulation

August 2019

Many cats exhibit overstimulation or petting-induced aggression. Cats vary enormously as to the extent and duration to which they like petting or handling.

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article

Grooming an Aggressive Cat

August 2019

It is very important to be cautious when grooming an aggressive cat. Injuries from scratching or biting can be severe and serious.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward Familiar People

August 2019

It is important to address aggression towards family members early. Even mild forms of aggression, when not properly addressed, can evolve into serious aggression.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward New People

August 2019

Many cats are not comfortable around strangers, or certain strangers in the home. Aggression is a serious behavioral issue in cats and is a symptom of an underlying problem.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward Children

August 2019

It is very important to ensure happy and safe interactions between kids and cats. Cat aggression towards children is particularly dangerous.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward Familiar Cats

August 2019

Aggression between cats who live together is fairly common. Some fights are obvious, and some can lead to serious injury. Other fights are more subtle, and you may not immediately notice them happening.

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article

Cat Aggression Toward People

August 2019

Aggression is a serious behavioral issue in cats, and unfortunately it is not uncommon. Aggression is a symptom of an underlying problem and always needs to be taken seriously.

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article

Finding Professional Behavioral Help for Cats

August 2019

These days behavioral advice can be only an internet search away, but how do you know you are getting the best advice for your specific situation by a qualified expert?

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article

Cat - Aggression During Play

August 2019

The term "play aggression" can be misleadingas it can lookslike intense playand occur in cats of any age. Cats with play aggression can target other cats, dogs,or even people in the household.

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article

Cat Toys and Cat Play

August 2019

There are a variety of cat toys on the market, including food and puzzle toys and toys that bounce, flutter, or move in a way that entices the cat to chase. The best toys for active play are string or wand toys that look like feathers or streamers or a toy dandling from a fishing pole. Even a peacock feather makes a great interactive toy due to its length. With timid cats it's best to stay away from large or noisy toys. Some cats are more attracted to things in the air while others prefer staying closer to the ground. Knowing whether your cat prefers air or ground play hunting will be an advantage, and you may have to try several different toys and rotate them frequently before you find the ones your cat likes best.

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presentation

Keep Them Happy at Home

Rebecca Lohnes, MS, CDBC, ACCBC, Behavior and Training Manager, Lollypop FarmJuly 2019

In this workshop Rebecca Lohnes of Lollypop Farm discusses various strategies and programs aimed at helping to address behavioral issues in the animal's original home before they are relinquished to a shelter. This presentation was recorded at the 2019 ASPCA Maddie's® Cornell Shelter Medicine Conference.

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presentation

Terrified Tigers and Other Ferocious Felines: Working with Different Cat Personalities

Rebecca Lohnes, MS, CDBC, ACCBC, Behavior and Training Manager, Lollypop FarmJuly 2019

In this presentation, learn about how to work with cats with different personalities and behavioral challenges. This presentation was recorded at the 2019 ASPCA Maddie's® Cornell Shelter Medicine Conference.

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flash

Straining to Poop in Cats and Dogs

June 2019

There are many causes of straining to poop in cats and dogs. The most common causes are diarrhea, constipation, or overly full anal glands, which are usually an "easy fix". Other causes, like gastrointestinal blockage, are more complicated to treat. In this class you will learn how to identify the symptoms of a cat or dog who is straining to poop, recognize when emergency veterinary attention is needed, and learn what you can do at home to help your dog or cat. Learn More

flash

Straining to Pee in Cats and Dogs

June 2019

There are many causes of straining to pee in cats and dogs. The most common causes are bladder inflammation or urinary tract infection, which are usually an "easy fix". Other causes, like urinary blockage and bladder stones, are more complicated to treat. In this class you will learn how to monitor for straining to pee in your cat or dog, recognize when an emergency veterinary visit is necessary, and what you can do for your pet in the meantime at home. Learn More

presentation

Animal Protection Officers: Using a Community-based Approach to Measurably Reduce Intake in the Field

Mark Sloat, Program Manager, Austin Animal Center and April Moore, Engagement Manager, Austin Animal CenterMarch 2019

This session will teach approaches that value the human-animal bond, redefine 'animals in need,' and engage community members, shelter staff, and volunteers to solve problems together.

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presentation

Solutions for the Top Five Reasons Dogs are Dying in Shelters

Mike Kaviani, Director, Orange County Animal Care and Aaron Caldwell, Dog Behavior Co-Manager, Austin Pets Alive!March 2019

The presentation will provide you with practical and manageable solutions for the top five reasons dogs are dying and being killed in shelters today.

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presentation

Saving Dogs with Behavioral Challenges

Aaron Caldwell, Dog Behavior Co-Manager, Austin Pets Alive! and Mike Kaviani, Director, OC Animal CareMarch 2019

Viewers will learn about cutting edge ways to solve non-shelter created behavior problems in shelter dogs.

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video

Saving More Lives with Best Practices

Cynthia Delany, DVM, UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program; Supervising Shelter Veterinarian - Yolo County Animal Services; Executive Director - California Animal Shelter Friends, Inc.October 2018

This talk discuss how you can save more animals while emphasizing welfare (both for the animals, yourself and your staff) by following best practices.

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presentation

An Evidence-Based Look at Compassion Fatigue: Diagnosing the Doctor and Healing the Healer, Part 1 of 2

Brian A. DiGangi, DVM, MS, DABVP, Senior Director, Shelter Medicine, ASPCA December 2018

This presentation explores the various definitions of compassion fatigue, reviews the evidence of its impact on healthcare professions and the symptoms of compassion fatigue in ourselves and others.

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presentation

An Evidence-Based Look at Compassion Fatigue: Diagnosing the Doctor and Healing the Healer, Part 1 of 2

Brian A. DiGangi, DVM, MS, DABVP, Senior Director, Shelter Medicine, ASPCADecember 2018

This presentation continues the deep dive into the research behind compassion fatigue among animal caregivers and offers methods for managing stress.

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blog

A trading post for shelter pet-helping ideas

November 27, 2018

Ever wish there was a place you could go to share your dog or cat wisdom with others? Or maybe you have an issue at your shelter or rescue organization and you'd like advice from someone who has been there before? Maddie's® Pet Forum is an excellent resource for organizations looking for encouragement and guidance.… Learn More

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Solving Litter Box Problems

November 2018

In this class you will learn how to understand the various issues related to owner surrender of cats with a history of inappropriate litter box use, the various medical and behavioral causes of peeing and/or pooping outside the litter box, techniques to eliminate behavioral causes of not using the litter box, and how to facilitate a successful adoption of a cat with a history of inappropriate litter box use.

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flash

Choosing the Appropriate Walking Gear

November 2018

In this class, you will learn the various different types of dog walking equipment, the pros and cons of each equipment, and what might be best for your foster dog.

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flash

How to Handle Leash Walking

November 2018

In this short class, learn the best tips for training your foster dog to walk properly on leash as well as a few other training scenarios leashes come in handy for.

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blog

#FeelGoodFriday: Veterinarian gives abandoned dog patience, trust and a home

September 28, 2018

Dr. Julie Reck  got a frantic call from her team at the vet hospital late one night. Someone had abandoned a dog in a crate in their alley — and the pup was terrified and wouldn’t come out of the crate. When Reck arrived at the clinic, she put patience and her Fear Free handling… Learn More

article

Introducing a New Dog to Pocket Pets and/or Birds

September 2018

Introducing a new dog to pocket pets and/or birds can be risky, and needs to be carefully planned and done slowly.

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article

Feeding Your New Dog

September 2018

Nutrition and the food you choose to feed your dog will have a big impact on their overall health and energy.

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article

What Do I Need? Training and Walking Supplies for Your New Dog

August 2019

Here are some basics that will help to be prepared for the best walks of your life with your new dog.

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article

Housetraining - Building Healthy Elimination Habits

August 1, 2019

With a good plan, your new dog can quickly learn to use the outdoor bathroom area you establish.

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article

Play and Toys - Your New Dog's First Few Days

September 2018

Play is a great way to release stress and tension, and a dog occupied with toys or games will also be a dog that isn't chewing on your personal belongings and furniture.

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blog

Community celebrates Independence Day by ‘Calming the Canines’ at their local shelter

August 16, 2018

It was the Fourth of July, and both of the shelters run by Maricopa County Animal Care & Control were full. Fireworks displays, a notorious trigger for canine anxiety, were scheduled in the areas surrounding both buildings. Worse, history had shown that the packed shelters would take in large numbers of dogs during and after… Learn More

blog

Can something in the air treat fights between cats in the same family?

July 31, 2018

What if you could sprinkle magic fairy dust to reduce fighting between cats in a family? That would certainly help keep cats in their homes, and encourage people to adopt multiple cats, so we wish we could tell you magic anti-cat fight fairy dust was a thing. What we can tell you is there’s something… Learn More

blog

Tip: Create a ‘relaxation station’ for shelter dogs who need to chill

July 19, 2018

Do you have a dog in your shelter who could use some time away from the noise and activity levels of the adoption floor? How about a dog who just needs a staycation? With some creativity and a little bit of extra space, you can create your own “relaxation station” for a stressed-out dog! The… Learn More

blog

Help kittens shine with Kitten Kindergarten

June 14, 2018

What's cuter than one kitten learning manners? Several kittens learning how to "touch," "sit" and wear a harness with pride! After all, puppies have access to all sorts of classes, so why not kittens? By exposing kittens who are 16 weeks and younger to new experiences, they’ll be on their way to becoming confident and… Learn More

video

Every Day, Every Dog - Let Them Play! The Impact of Play Groups

Aimee SadlerMarch 2018

It's more than just fun and games; play groups save lives! Aimee Sadler, Founder and CEO shares case studies and evidence that playgroups improve the quality of life of dogs and their caretakers.

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video

Get Your Pit Bull-Type Dogs Adopted with the Canine Good Citizen Program

Carrie MorrisMarch 2018

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 Training on adoption rates. The results have been jaw-dropping!

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blog

Is it time to stop evaluating shelter dogs for food guarding?

March 15, 2018

Research published last month suggests evaluating shelter dogs for food guarding doesn’t increase safety or reduce bites, and may result in lower adoption rates and increased euthanasia of dogs who are defined as “food guarders.” The behavior a dog shows in an animal shelter may not match the behavior she’ll show once in a home.… Learn More

webcast

Foster Sleepovers: How Temporary Fostering Can Improve the Lives of Shelter Dogs

Lisa Gunter and Kelly DuerMarch 2018

Whether you're looking to start a foster program at your shelter, or give a boost to an already-existing foster program, Maddie's Fund® has a webcast series for you!

This free webcast on Thursday, March 8, 2018, at 9 PM Eastern will show you how temporary fostering can improve the lives of shelter dogs.

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flash

Basket Muzzle Training

Fear FreeFebruary 2018

Conditioning a dog to be comfortable wearing a muzzle is an important life skill. In this short video by Fear Free you can learn how to do exactly that.

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flash

House Training Your Foster Dog

January 2018

Learn some easy methods to help in house training your foster dog in this short video.

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blog

Study: Can a human drug help community cats experience less stress during TNR?

December 12, 2017

Can you imagine how terrifying it must feel for cats who are trapped for sterilization and returned to their outdoor habitat, especially when the cat is not socialized to humans? And you probably don’t need to imagine how much stress pet cats can experience when taken to the veterinarian — if you’ve ever owned a… Learn More

webcast

Behavioral Pharmacology in Shelter Settings

Dr. Sara L. BennettNovember 14, 2017

Learn about common behavioral concerns and diagnoses in sheltered pets and what medications might be most appropriate for their conditions. Learn More

video

How Numbers Can Tell Your Story - and Save Lives!

October 2017

Understanding the vital roles of data and transparency is fundamental to our efforts to save homeless pets. Here are three illustrative case studies of communities that have used data and transparency to increase lifesaving impact.

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blog

Study: What cats really don’t like in their litter box

September 26, 2017

When cats stop using their litter box, and they get a clean bill of physical health from their veterinarian, there’s one piece of advice that almost universally comes next: Keep your litter box clean. But what does that mean from the cat’s point of view? The smell of a cat box is probably the main… Learn More

presentation

Behavioral Pharmacology: Common Behavior Problems in Sheltered Dogs and Cats, Part 1

Sara L. Bennett, DVM, MS, DACVBJanuary 2018

A variety of common behavior problems experienced by dogs and cats in sheltered situations. Part 1 shows examples of working with sheltered cats. Learn More

presentation

Behavioral Pharmacology: Common Behavior Problems in Sheltered Dogs and Cats, Part 2

Sara L. Bennett, DVM, MS, DACVBJanuary 2018

A variety of common behavior problems experienced by dogs and cats in sheltered situations will be presented. Part 2 shows examples of working with dogs in the shelter. Learn More

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Veterinary Psychopharmaceuticals and their Use in Shelter Medicine

Sara L. Bennett, DVM, MS, DACVBJanuary 2018

Psychopharmaceuticals can be a helpful tool to manage and address behavior concerns in sheltered pets. Learn More

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Cat lovers: How well do you understand your cat?

July 19, 2017

Did you know there are scent glands on cat paws? And, that when they scratch, they leave pheromones? If not, don't worry – you're not alone! Cat owner and lover Toni Alexander had no idea until she decided to learn how to speak cat with our free online Feline Communications course while passing the time… Learn More

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From anxious to adoptable: An expansion of foster care using a Maddie’s Idea Lab Grant

June 7, 2017

Do you have shy or anxious dogs in your shelter who you just know would benefit from being in a foster home and out of the shelter environment? That's exactly how the Anxious Dog Program (ADP) started at Longmont Humane Society in Longmont, Colo. The Anxious Dog Program expands the shelter’s foster program to include specially… Learn More

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Host a feline communication popcorn party, and help cats!

June 1, 2017

If you’d like your shelter and rescue group staff, volunteers, fosters and adopters — as well as cat loving community-members — to speak cat, it may be time to host a party to watch our free online course, Feline Communication: How to Speak Cat!, together! When you know how to read it, a cat's body… Learn More

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#FeelGoodFriday: Golf cart transports fearful dog to happiness!

May 12, 2017

Sometimes a golf cart is just a golf cart. And sometimes it’s a terrified dog’s ticket to ride. When Daphne came to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, she was scared of everything. She was frightened of people, and wanted to hide all the time. But one day, her caregiver, John Sibley, encouraged her to jump up… Learn More

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Using foster care to increase lifesaving in large dogs

May 2, 2017

Can you place medium and large dogs with behavioral problems in foster homes and see their behavior improve? Can those dogs eventually be adopted into permanent homes? And can all of that be done safely? Those were the objectives of a 22-month long study conducted by Fairfax County Animal Shelter in Virginia. The result? A… Learn More

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Do you speak cat? Learn how with our free, online Feline Communications course!

April 20, 2017

Ever wanted to 'talk to the animals' like Dr. Dolittle? Now you can! With cats, at least. Introducing our new Feline Communications online course: How to Speak Cat! Understanding how to read a cat's body language can help deepen the bond of friendship and make cats more at ease. For cats waiting to be adopted,… Learn More

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Embracing kennel enrichment at your shelter can save lives

April 4, 2017

Could something as simple as enrichment in a dog’s kennel or run play a key role in saving more lives? Absolutely, says Kristen Auerbach, Deputy Chief Animal Services Officer at Austin Animal Center. In her guest blog post, Auerbach shares the power of kennel enrichment in reducing kennel stress and improving quality of life for dogs, and how… Learn More

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Study: Pet store puppies have more aggression, anxiety, and house-soiling problems

March 30, 2017

There’s an important tool to help in the fight against puppy mill puppies sold through pet stores: They’re more likely to be aggressive with their owners, strangers and other dogs. They’re also more fearful and suffer more from separation anxiety. In a study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association and led… Learn More

webcast

Small Changes, Big Results for Cats

Mike Keiley and Bryn Conklin RogersMarch 2017

Learn how making a few small, easy-to-implement changes can spiral into more programs, lower intake and decrease euthanasia at an open admission adoption center. Learn More

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Setting a shy dog up for success

March 29, 2017

How do you approach your shy foster dog for the first time? And how can you prepare your family for when you bring the dog home? Knowing how to handle these situations can go a long way toward setting your foster dog up for success — and that’s exactly what you’ll learn in our new… Learn More

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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

Rebound HoundsMarch 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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Can You Speak Cat? Test Your Knowledge!

Dr. Susan Krebsbach and Dr. Laurie PeekFebruary 2017

In this series of six 4-minute exercises, you can test your knowledge of what cats are conveying with their body language and vocalization. Learn More

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Fostering and Socializing Unsocial Kittens

January 2017

The good news is that many unsocialized kittens can learn to not only tolerate interaction with humans but even enjoy it. Learn More

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Feline Communication: How to Speak Cat & Understand Cat Behavior

Dr. Susan Krebsbach and Dr. Laurie PeekJanuary 2017

Knowing how to read a cat's body language can tell us volumes about what he or she is trying to say to us. This can aid in providing better care and deepening the bond of friendship with our feline companions. Learn More

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Through a cat’s nose: How understanding smell can keep cats in homes and reduce stress in shelters

January 10, 2017

Most of us know dogs put a lot of store in how things smell, their noses are legendary for their sniffing ability. It’s not as widely known that the smells in a cat’s environment are a critical part of what makes a cat feel safe and free of stress, whether the cat is living in… Learn More

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Study: The effect of declawing on litter box use in multi-cat households

January 3, 2017

Problems related to urinating and defecating outside the litter box and living with more than one cat are among the top reasons people surrender cats to a shelter. Is that worse for cats who have been declawed? The average number of cats per cat-owning household is 2, indicating that multi-cat households are very common in… Learn More

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The way shelters handle and care for cats can improve their adoption chances

December 13, 2016

Can something as simple as more frequent cleaning of food bowls and changing of water in a shelter cat’s housing get them adopted more quickly? A study soon to be published in the peer-reviewed journal Applied Animal Behaviour Science suggests that it is. The study was conducted in Austria, where it’s illegal for shelters to… Learn More

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Helping Shelter Pets find Health, Happiness and Homes with Fear Free

Dr. Marty BeckerNovember 2016

Learn why fear is the worst thing a social species can experience, and how it causes permanent damage to the brain.

 

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Taking the fear, anxiety, and stress out of animal shelters: Is it possible?

November 22, 2016

In 2009, veterinarian Dr. Marty Becker attended a presentation where veterinary behaviorist Dr. Karen Overall said something that changed his life: “Fear is the worst thing a social species can experience, and it causes permanent damage to the brain.” “I’d always thought of myself as a particularly compassionate veterinarian,” he said. “I had been exposed… Learn More

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Study: How much space do shelter cats need to be happier, more playful, and less stressed?

November 15, 2016

Shelter cats are happier, more playful, friendlier with each other, and less stressed when they have more room — 4 square meters, or 43 square feet, per cat, to be precise. In a study published in the June 2016 issue of Applied Animal Behaviour Science, Swedish researchers tested the play, mutual grooming, and inter-cat aggressiveness… Learn More

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Are we really supposed to stop assessing behavior in shelter dogs?

November 3, 2016

Did a recent study really suggest animal shelters stop evaluating dogs for temperament and adoption? Not exactly. The study, authored by Dr. Gary J. Patronek of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts and Janis Bradley of the National Canine Research Council, was published in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior in August. Its central… Learn More

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Study: How important are gradual introductions between newly-adopted and existing cats?

August 2, 2016

Does your shelter or rescue group counsel adopters on how to carefully and gradually introduce a new cat into the family? If so, many of your adopters may well be ignoring your advice — and things work out anyway. A couple of weeks ago, Million Cat Challenge co-founder Dr. Kate Hurley of the UC Davis… Learn More

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Stress Reduction: Happy and Healthy Shelter Dogs

Dr. Sara L. BennettJune 2016

Everyone wants to make sheltered life better for dogs while they wait to get adopted. Learn what works and what doesn't in this webcast.
Learn More

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Stress Reduction: Happy and Healthy Shelter Cats on a Fast Track to Adoption

Dr. Brenda GriffinMay 2016

Stress can trigger physical, emotional and behavioral problems for cats in animal shelters. What can be done to help overcome stress and its negative outcomes?
Learn More

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The magic ingredient for success in adopting a puppy mill survivor

March 24, 2016

It’s the most important step you can take to help a newly adopted puppy mill dog adjust, say experts: If you don’t already have one, get another dog. While patience is the quality most needed by puppy mill rescue adopters, research conducted by Dr. Frank McMillan and presented at the University of Florida Maddie’s® Shelter… Learn More

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Toys and TLC in animal shelters: Looking beyond adoption rates

March 15, 2016

What if playing and interacting with shelter pets didn’t help them get adopted more easily? Would that be a reason to stop? Absolutely not, and here’s why. A number of studies in recent years have looked at the impact of toys, play, grooming and human interaction on pets in shelters. Some have shown those interventions… Learn More

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A stranger told her his dog had gone missing. What she told him made all the difference!

February 18, 2016

A stranger stops you in the street and tells you his dog is missing. Would you know what to tell him? Thanks to her time volunteering for Lost Dogs Minnesota, Linda Conrad did. Conrad was packing up her van for a trip one morning when a car stopped in her driveway. He’d noticed the dog… Learn More

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How Stress is Sabotaging Your Cat Adoption Efforts

Dr. Sheila D'ArpinoFebruary 2016

It's well known that cat health is quickly and negatively impacted by stress. But is it also making it harder for them to get adopted? Learn strategies to identify those effects not only in individual cats, but in the entire population of cats in a facility. Learn More

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Australian study reveals challenges, pitfalls of evaluating dog behavior in shelters

February 2, 2016

Even the best canine behavior evaluation systems are not reliable when assessing shelter dogs, suggests a recent Australian study. Psychologist Dr. Zazie Todd’s influential blog Companion Animal Psychology took on the challenges of canine behavior evaluations in animal shelters last month. Todd examined at recent study by Monash University’s Kate Mornement, evaluating the Behavioural Assessment… Learn More

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Playing with dogs is the best medicine

January 14, 2016

Looking for an easy way to enhance the well being of your dog and yourself this New Year? Simply resolve to play! Just as with children, play for dogs isn't only about having fun. In fact, play is as essential for dogs' health and well being as it is enjoyable. Now is the perfect time… Learn More

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How Stress is Sabotaging Your Dog Adoption Efforts

Dr. Sheila D'ArpinoJanuary 2016

Are dogs in shelters developing health and behavior problems because of stress? And does that make adoption more difficult and less likely for those pets? Learn to recognize the harmful effects of stress on sheltered dogs, and strategies to alleviate that stress in this free webcast. Learn More

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Is stress undermining your pet adoption efforts?

January 12, 2016

Are dogs and cats in shelters developing health and behavior problems because of stress? And does that make adoption more difficult and less likely for those pets? Yes, says board certified veterinary behaviorist Dr. Sheila D’Arpino. On January 14 and February 4, 2016, she’ll be presenting free webcasts on how stress is sabotaging your pet… 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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How to tell if a shelter cat is stressed, fearful or feral

December 1, 2015

The best way to help any cat entering an animal shelter will depend on the cat. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for many shelter workers to tell the difference between a cat who is a social animal, used to humans, but severely stressed out or afraid, and a truly feral cat. Sara L. Bennett, DVM,… Learn More

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Celebrate Peanut Butter Lovers Month with these dog-approved recipes!

November 19, 2015

Want to share the peanut butter love with your favorite dog during Peanut Butter Lovers Month? The dog lovers at Maddie’s Fund® have you covered! The first two come from Kim, our Maddie’s® Adoption Program Manager. “Kongs stuffed with peanut butter and plain Cheerios are a delicious treat for dogs,” she said. “If they get… Learn More

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TLC from humans staves off respiratory infections in shelter cats

September 23, 2015

Cats who receive positive attention from human caretakers while in animal shelters exhibit fewer signs of stress and a lower incidence of upper respiratory disease than cats who don’t. These results, reported in the October 2015 issue of the peer-reviewed journal Preventive Veterinary Medicine, are consistent with the authors’ earlier study on petting shelter cats,… Learn More

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Avoiding Dog Fights in the Shelter

Ehren Melius October 2015

Dog-to-dog aggression can be challenging, but there are myriad ways to keep your canines happy and safe. Learn More

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Enrichment for Shelter Cats

Rebecca Lohnes, MS October 2015

Hear about enrichment options to increase quality of life for the cats in your facility, including low cost enrichment options, and positive training techniques. Learn More

presentation

Enrichment for Shelter Dogs

Rebecca Lohnes, MSOctober 2015

Positive reinforcement training and enrichment exercises are some of the best ways to reduce kennel stress and increase adoptability for shelter dogs. Learn More

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Capacity for Care: When Less Adds Up to a Whole Lot More for Shelter Cats

Ollie Davidson and Kathleen OlsonApril 2015

How can your shelter save more cats? Take in fewer of them at a time, give each cat more room and care for them better. 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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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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The Best Medicine: Playing With Shelter Dogs

Brenda Griffin, DVM, MS, DACVIMOctober 2014

Dogs and games go together - never more than when they're shelter dogs! Play, particularly play with humans, can reduce stress and improve behavioral and physical wellness for dogs in animal shelters.  Learn More

presentation

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

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Physical and Behavioral Development of Kittens for the First Six Weeks of Life

Susan Krebsbach, DVMDecember 2013

Early behavioral development of kittens is governed by the extent to which other body systems and senses have developed. An understanding of both is vital if we are to comprehend the antics of the kittens in our charge. 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 Fund® 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

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From Helpless Newborn to Skilled Acrobat: Feline Development and the Orphaned Kitten

Susan Krebsbach, DVMApril 2013

Kittens may start out tiny and helpless, but they rapidly develop into some of nature's most agile and active creatures. Making sure they grow up with their social and behavioral needs met is as important as making sure their physical needs are fulfilled, says Susan Krebsbach, DVM. 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

webcast

Fixing the Feline Housing Crisis: How Shelter Housing Can Make Cats Sick - And What You Can Do About It

Sandra Newbury, DVMOctober 2012

Cats are extremely sensitive to noise, crowding, and stress - three things that are in abundant supply in many animal shelters. These adverse conditions often lead to illness in sheltered cats, particularly the most common of all feline shelter diseases, upper respiratory infection (URI). Learn More

presentation

Canine Body Language in the Shelter

Dr. Sara Bennett, DVM, DACVBSeptember 2012

Have you ever wondered how dogs communicate? Are we even close to understanding them? Dr. Sara Bennett, graduate of the Purdue Shelter Veterinary Behavior Residency Program, goes through an overview of canine body language and interpretation. She discusses welfare implications of different behavior states, as well as how this can affect and be affected by length of stay in a shelter and the animal shelter environment. Learn More

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Enrichment and Training for Dogs and Cats

Kelley Bollen, MS, CABCJuly 2012

Ms. Bollen talks about the benefits of enrichment and training for both dogs and cats, as well as the value of these programs in enhancing opportunities for adoption. Learn More

presentation

Stress Reduction for Shelter Cats

Kelley Bollen, MS, CABCJuly 2012

Various strategies for reducing the stress experienced by cats in a shelter environment. Learn More

presentation

Stress Reduction for Shelter Dogs

Kelley Bollen, MS, CABCJuly 2012

Various strategies for reducing the stress experienced by dogs in a shelter environment. Learn More

presentation

Curing the Litter Box Blues - Feline Elimination Disorders

Susan Krebsbach, DVMOctober 2011

Dr. Susan Krebsbach, veterinary behavior specialist, presents "Curing the Litter Box Blues: Feline Elimination Disorders" at the Purdue/Maddie's Shelter Medicine Symposium 2011. Learn More