By Tim Leeds
Sometimes pet owners have problems with things their pets do. Answers to some problems dog owners have will soon be readily available.
Local dog care and training providers are holding round table workshops to provide answers for some common problems owners have with their dog's behaviors. No dogs will be at the workshops.
Fran Buell and Dyann Otto of Bare Paw Dog Obedience will be joining Shannon Lynnes of the Doggy Daycare Pet Resort and Dr. Tari Mord, D.V.M., to provide five workshops in March on dog behavior.
The workshops will be held from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on every Wednesday in March at the Doggy Daycare Pet Resort at 628 Eighth St., formerly Loendorf's Floral.
The presenters ask for preregistration to know how many will attend, although walk-ins are welcome. The workshops cost $10.
The workshops will be an open forum to ask questions of the group. Each workshop will cover a specific topic, and some will have presentations by the member of the group who specializes on the topic covered.
The session on March 1 is titled "Dealing with unwanted behavior" and will include chewing, barking, whining and house training. It will deal with puppies to elderly dogs and give tips on how to break bad habits.
The March 8 session is titled "Groomer/kennel operator's point of view." It will be presented by Shannon Lynnes, and will include preparing your dog to be away from you while being groomed or boarded, and how to deal with separation anxiety in your dog. This session will also include home grooming tips.
The March 15 session is titled "Territorial dogs" and will cover dogs that are very territorial. This will help with problems with visitors such as delivery people and salespeople.
The March 22 session is titled "Vet's point of view" and will be presented by Dr. Mord. It will cover medical problems that could be causing behavioral changes or problems. Solutions such as medication, first-aid and nutrition will be suggested.
The March 29 session is titled "Biting and aggression" and will be presented by Dyann Otto. It will cover dogs that exhibit aggressive behavior and suggest solutions.
Handouts covering the topic of each session will be given to participants.
Lynnes said participants should come "armed with their questions. If the question isn't listed, bring it in. We're wide open," she said.
Mord said if they don't know the answer to a question, they'll find it and get the answer back to the questioner.
Lynnes said part of the reason to bring representatives from different areas of dog care is to cover all areas of the topics and to let dog owners know who is appropriate to ask about different issues. She said she often receives questions which she has to refer to a veterinarian or to obedience trainers.
Otto said a goal of the workshops is to prevent many dogs from being put to sleep because of bad behavior. Mord said the leading cause of death in puppies less than 1-year-old is due to behavioral problems.
"They get taken to the shelter or to a vet," she said. "These problems are usually fixable, especially if caught early enough. Buell said many of the solutions are very simple. She said the first thing usually recommended is a trip to the vet. She said the behavior could be caused by something as simple as a diet problem.
Buell said they hope to give information that might prevent problem behavior once dog owners know of the causes and signs.
"It's simpler to prevent than to resolve," she said. "If you teach your dog to be obedient you can control almost any behavior."
The group hopes this could function as a pilot program. They said if the workshops are a success, they may develop into an ongoing or even monthly program.
Buell and Otto are members of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers and have 14 years of fair show experience; Lynnes is a certified master groomer, certified pet care technician and member of the American Boarding Kennels Association; Mord is a licensed doctor of veterinary medicine.