Let Dogs Be Dogs


Recommended Checklist For Your New Dog Or Puppy     


  • Commitment, Compassion and Consistency
  • Patience, Understanding and Realistic expectations
  • A clean bill of health from breeder, vet, shelter, rescue – heart, lungs, hips, eyes, what’s longevity index
  • A clean & green home – void of toxins, smoke, tensions, air fresheners.
  • Familiarize yourself w/ K9 wellness – nutrition, min vax, positive environment, K9 emotional health
  • Create a wellness team – YOU must be dog’s healthcare advocate! Holistic Vet AHVMA.org
  • Find a well-rounded, positive reward-based dog trainer – qualified K9 expert w/ min 500 hours

  • Relationship based rearing / Mirror / Energy – people & household/ Mindfulness / Self Awareness
  • Time – giving of your time is a gift. Connect with your dog and enjoy him/her
  • Dogs are our wisest teachers – watch take notes. Spend quality time w/ your dog
  • Be present and engaged with your dog – Step away from all devices and enjoy the moment w/ your dog
  • Provide your dog w/ a sense of purpose. Job = purpose = mental/physical stimulation = tired = happy dog
  • Recognize stress in your dog and remove it – being left alone, yelling, toxic environment, etc.
  • Take your dog on “scent walks” – allow them to check their email/texts

  • Species Appropriate whole food – Raw is the best. Other options – freeze dried raw /dehydrated raw
  • Raw fermented milk, fish, eggs, organ meats!
  • Healthy Treats / real food for learning – No Nyla or Rawhide Bones!
  • Flat food plates and glass water glass water bowls – open view feeding that’s natural & safe
  • Bottled or Filtered Water!
  • Kong Toys – Size should change as pup grows. Use this OFTEN!
  • Bait bag – fanny pack to hold real food. Timing is everything. Don’t miss out on training opportunities
  • Healthy natural Chews – Raw Bones, Split Elk Antlers, Kongs,
  • Bully Sticks from Only Natural Pet (ONP, Grass Fed, Bully Stick, USA Grass Fed)
  • Allow your dog to get dirty/dig in clean dirt – how good bacteria supports their microbiome / Immune Syst

  • Wire Crate with partition (a varied travel kennel is NOT a crate)
  • Buckle collar & lead to hold I.D tag … NEVER metal choke chains or Prong collars. No Flexi leashes
  • Identification Tag!! (A Must!) and a Microchip (?) name, numbers
  • Compostable poop bags
  • Avoid toxins – there are effective alternatives to Frontline
  • Always supervised. Never Allowed outside alone or inside unsupervised. Resist micromanaging
  • Allow to make choices and forage … self-select
  • A small / quiet territory – too much room is overwhelming and stressful for a dog

  • Impulse control – more important than any cue you’ll teach
  • Use hand signals – your dog does not speak English. They do read body language
  • Humane / Positive Training. Soft hands and gentle voice
  • Dogs avoid conflict at all costs – stop yourself if you are going down the road of reprimanding
  • Praise everything your dog does “right”. Catch them offering acceptable behavior. Say YES not NO!
  • Repeat Praise everything your dog does “right”. Catch them offering acceptable behavior. Say YES not NO!
  • A Calm House – de-escalate things when necessary and avoid stressful situations
  • Reduce stress – stress leads to a weakened immune system which leads to chronic disease
  • 21/90 – It takes 21 days to create a new behavior and 90 day to create a habit

  • Work on canine appropriate BITE INHIBITION now till approximately 5 months
  • Early SOCIALIZATION well before 6 months and thru to 3 years
  • Play games with fun and fair rules – and don’t be your dog’s chew toy
  • Integrate learning rather than have “training sessions” that are borrrrrring
  • Integrative fun, play learning and Consistency
  • Start the way you mean to go – ie: If you don’t want a jumping dog, don’t encourage it now
  • Follow through with everything you say/do. Lack of it causes confusion and impedes learning
  • Recognize and meet your dog’s needs – Mind Body and Spirit

  • Realistic Expectations. Unrealistic ones will cause your dog (and you) stress
  • Dogs are your mirror – exercise self-awareness
  • A Sense of Humor and check your ego at the door
  • Be present and self- aware – your dog is
  • Kindness – When you have the chance be kind. You ALWAYS have the chance
  • Understanding – It’s a tall order for dogs to live with humans
  • Patience – It’s the companion to wisdom. Observe your dogs … they’re our best teachers
  • Life lessons – there are countless ones that your dog will teach you

Maggie and Australian Kelpie/ 30 year old dog lived on a dairy farm and drank raw goat milk daily. She was allowed to be a dog. Her mannerly behaviors were reinforced and her natural canine ways were never suppressed. She had a job to do every day which provided her with mental and physical stimulation as well as giving her a sense of purpose and joy. Most of us don’t live on a dairy farm with our dogs but we CAN help our dogs THRIVE like Maggie IF we make the shift and offer what nature intended.

 Give your dog these gifts of Mind Body & Spirit and Let Dogs be Dogs

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