The Teachable Moment

The Moment!

The doorbell rang and the young male Dobie in his crate began a furious barking.  “It’s OK, Buddy, it’s OK.  Good dog, good dog.” his owner cooed in an attempt to reassure Buddy dog, as the barking continued.  “Don’t praise him for being bad!” I tactlessly hollered from the other room, continuing with a bellowed, “Quiet!” for good measure.  Startled, the pup stopped barking for a moment, and finally, I managed to do the right thing and praise him when he quieted.

What had we both done wrong?  As we shape behavior with a dog, especially in the first year of its life with us, whether as a young pup or a 6 year old rescue, there are key instants when you have the opportunity to imprint or “mark” your dog’s correct response to a situation or command. Those moments should be considered rare and valuable treasures and we should wait and watch for them like a gourmand searching for truffles in the French woods.  I call it the teachable moment, and our response to that moment makes all the difference in the world to whether a dog learns and reinforces calm, balanced behavior or obnoxious habits that will come back to haunt us.

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AZ Doggy Dude Ranch Dogs..

Arizona Doggy Dude Ranch Dogs Learn To:

  • Come when called every time...on or off leash!
  • Sit or down when asked...for as long as you want!
  • Walk like a gentleman or lady on a loose leash!
  • Pay attention when you need them!
  • Be wonderfully well-mannered pets inside and outside the home!


Shellie Ferguson

hot-dogHi there -

Thought I'd send a quick pic and an update on Brody since he has hit his one year anniversary from "boot camp" already.



AngelsThe girls were so good in the car and also at the rest stop....

What a wonderful, exhilerating, educational, awe-inspiring experience we had with you.  You certainly exceeded our expectations with the girls.


Marc Goldberg - CDT

Marc GoldbergMaryna has an amazing touch with both dogs and people. Rarely does one dog trainer ever permit another to work with his dogs. Dog trainers are very particular about how their pets are handled. Maryna has worked with my own dogs at my request.
Even though I have been training dogs for over 30 years, in just a few moments, Maryna taught my pets a few new tricks, calming them significantly and quickly. What pleased me most was how gentle and loving Maryna treats dogs. They respond to her very quickly with trust and love.



EmmaJust a note to let you know that Emma (and I !!) are doing very well....we walk every day and she does a great job in sitting and staying...and quite well at heeling....


Deb Tollefson

Deb Tollefson, Retired
Veterinary Technician
Office Manager, Co-owner--Veterinary Clinic
I am sharing something with you that you may or may not be interested in, but I was so impressed yesterday at what I observed that I just couldn't sit on it.
My friend Maryna, who has been keeping my neck and back healthy for years, has a home full of her own very well-behaved dogs. I was always impressed that they never tried to jump on me and always responded so well when given commands. Mostly, if they were in the house they just looked up from their appointed resting places, and then ignored me.

iacpgoldlogostampCall us to talk about what we can do to help you with your dog!


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