IAABC’s Position on Dominance  

IAABC’s Position on Dominance  

Dominance is a concept we frequently encounter in discussions of companion animal behavior. Many pet owners believe that the most important thing they can do to ensure their animal behaves appropriately is to establish themselves as “dominant,” “the alpha mare,” or...
What Does Maslow’s Pinnacle Mean for Horses?

What Does Maslow’s Pinnacle Mean for Horses?

How best to meet the behavioural and emotional needs of horses is the crux of a typical behavioural consultation. The job of the behaviour consultant is to tread the path of assessing and meeting the needs of the horse, whilst simultaneously managing the desires and...
Euthanasia in Shelters: Data and Decisionmaking

Euthanasia in Shelters: Data and Decisionmaking

Euthanasia in shelters is a frequently discussed topic among staff, volunteers, and increasingly on social media by people with little experience of the realities of the situation being discussed. Looking at these often highly emotional discussions, it would seem that...
Boo! Training a Bear: 2018

Boo! Training a Bear: 2018

Background Readers were introduced to Boo, a male grizzly bear (Ursus arctos), in the Winter 2018 issue of the IAABC Journal. Born in 2002,  Boo weighs around 550-600 pounds in the spring, and up to 750-850 pounds in the winter before hibernation. We came to take care...
The Most Successful Case I Ever Lost

The Most Successful Case I Ever Lost

We are teacher and trainers. We are also learners. Our animal clients have lessons for us, it seems, each time we meet. When is it time to observe? When is it time to step back, adjust our plan? When do we push forward? We are familiar with these lessons, we trainers...
The Shelter Playgroup Alliance

The Shelter Playgroup Alliance

How the Shelter Playgroup Alliance (SPA) Started Toward the end of 2017, I was putting the final touches on a canine enrichment program for the open-admission, high-volume shelter at which I am a behavior and training consultant. I started to develop an inter-dog...
The Benefits of Teaching a Parrot Tricks

The Benefits of Teaching a Parrot Tricks

Living with an intelligent exotic animal like a parrot can be an absolute joy. It can also be quite challenging trying to meet the complex needs of these marvelous sentient beings. The most effective and humane, and least intrusive, way to interact with your bird is...
Hunting Enrichment Part 2: The great outdoors

Hunting Enrichment Part 2: The great outdoors

If you ask clients why they do not allow their cat outdoor access, you will hear a few common things: The client is fearful that harm will come to the cat, the client lacks knowledge on how to safely provide outdoor access, or the client simply doesn’t feel the...
Cooperative Care: The How and the Why

Cooperative Care: The How and the Why

Cooperative care involves training an animal to not only tolerate handling and husbandry procedures, but to be an active, willing participant in these experiences. In this column, we highlight some useful behaviors to teach clients to facilitate cooperative care, and...
Directional Control: Not Just for Working Dogs

Directional Control: Not Just for Working Dogs

Moses leaps into action, darting across the field and vaulting onto a platform located 25 yards away. Happily holding there, he waits for the next cue, then runs to the next target. A total stranger is directing him while I stand out of the picture. I spent two...