When growing up Caitlin was influenced by the 1967 musical “Doctor Dolittle” and was so infatuated with the idea of talking with the animals that she named her first pet Polly, after Dolittle’s macaw, Polynesia.
In pursuit of becoming a “Dr. Dolittle” herself, Caitlin began volunteering for the local parks and rec department when she was 15 and continued to gain experience at local rescues, zoos, and aquariums eventually turning into a Zookeeping career. At the age of 16 she started traveling across the US to attend and learn from conferences every year. She hasn’t missed a trip yet. Caitlin graduated college with an Integrative Animal Biology degree and minor in Psychology.
Caitlin’s Animal Training was formed with the core value of “first, do no harm” when training. By providing in-home puppy raising packages and Service Dog coaching using this philosophy, Caitlin closes the knowledge gap in the community by using up to date and effective modern training techniques. Her goal is for everyone to become their own “Dr. Dolittle”.
Caitlin currently shares her home with a Parrotlet, a Giant Day Gecko, and Reiver her Australian Koolie dog.
welcome back everyone it is Caitlin bird your favorite service dog trainer uh on the internet and it’s a really overcast day here in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania so we’re gonna go over some articles here today um I wanted to First showcase I put sparkles on my face today okay mermaid-esque Vibes all right all right I I’m I’m but I’m vibing so far I’m bothered so we’ve got an article here this is from Telluride Daily Planet honestly no idea where this is at if anyone knows of 970 telephone number let me know in the comments below um so we’ve got our puppy article here the last time I reviewed one of these I was not impressed um and and I was mildly depressed so let’s hope for the best here um puppy articles don’t always um have the best advice because the dog training industry is unregulated and there’s a lot of old information circling it circulating out there so let’s Dive Right In Katara a puppy at Second Chance Humane Society is waiting patiently for a heavy uh a forever haul this is Proud by Lee Lee Walter if you’re a parent or have spent time around babies you know they put everything in their mouths toys fingers clothing literally anything and everything putting toys in other household objects in their mouth allows babies to discover the taste and texture of different objects but human babies typically don’t have a mouth full of sharp needle-like teeth like canine babies um I want to put my own information here as well keep in mind the reason the driving force behind this Behavior both for babies and kids is that oftentimes they’re so their gums are really really sore you probably don’t remember when your teeth grew in that is a good thing because that is a very painful process they get red they get irritated and very very sensitive and they’re looking and they’re searching for something to put it in their mouth to help them feel better okay article continues to go on saying puppies bite people and objects for a variety of reasons including exploring the world through their mouths fighting and chewing are normal parts of puppy development very true reasons that your puppy might be biting you or things around your house include learning teething I might I might have put that one first stress that that goes hand in hand with teething boredom and play understanding the reasons doesn’t mean it’s something to ignore puppies should learn to keep their mouths to themselves at a young age to prevent behavioral problems in the future training a puppy not to bite takes a patient and gentle approach so yes and no there’s actually been research done on this and I would have to go and dig up the articles but I’m trying to remember who I got this information from was it Susan Garrett or was it somebody else I might have read it in one of my books back there that puppies do grow out of teething for the reason I mentioned earlier pain and discomfort right if your teeth Don’t Hurt Anymore you’re not going to be nearly as needy to shove things in your face for most breeds Labradors might be an exception sometimes that becomes a game of Chase me and then you go around running in circles after your dog and then because it’s just fun right for the dog not for you but by and large puppies grow out of this because the driving motivator has stopped their teeth have grown it right um so take that into consideration um it’s not a hundred percent a training issue although training does help it is not the driving motivator for the dog’s Behavior what else they have to say first ensure the puppy has appropriate chewing options including puppy safe chews and toys you don’t want to stop your puppy from chewing you just want them to chew on safe and appropriate things I agree if your puppy is biting you when you play don’t yell or punish one suggestion is to make a high-pitched crying sound and then redirect your puppy to a safe and appropriate toy for them to bite or chew on by making a high-pitched crying sound you’re telling your puppy that the biting hurts doing this mimics the feedback puppies get from their litter mates about how to bite softer or less while playing so I want to come at this bit of information from a couple different angles okay the first one being it doesn’t work for all puppies right some puppies typically as they get older might find it enjoyable that you are yelling in when you get nipped and sometimes that can amp them up and encourage them to start going after you more okay take that into account the other angle I want to come at this at is just because it works doesn’t mean you have to do it right some dogs are also extremely sensitive to your emotions as a person and that’s not something that animals in the wild naturally do right we bred for this characteristics in our dogs over thousands of thousands and thousands of years certain breeds have more empathy or focus on human emotions than other breeds some breeds don’t care right like an Akita would be a good example they’re pretty independent people describe them more like cats cats typically don’t come over to comfort you if you do get a cat with that you are extremely lucky okay so a lot of these things do depend on the breed as well the other thing is that if your puppy is excessively getting into things they shouldn’t be getting into like stealing your socks or your shoes all the time or maybe they’re getting into garbage or maybe they’re chewing on pieces of your furniture maybe it’s metal that’s attracting them right typically when it’s metal why do they go for metal because it’s really cool and it feels good on their teeth right so right there it’s telling me if I have a client that comes to me with these problems I say well why are you setting them up for failure why are you letting them free roam all across the house and that’s usually the first thing we discuss um and there’s a variety of options that you can do so that you don’t have to yell ouch and make your puppy feel bad especially if they’re the kind of dog that is really empathetic towards your feelings or the kind of dog that just gets amped up when you do it so those are that’s my two cents be consistent while playing with and training your puppy puppy bite training should be something everyone in the family is on board with but consistently gently redirecting your puppy to save chew toys yeah that’s I mean it’s constant redirection is what it is it’s like this not that this not that oh you found something that looks like a shoestring and you want to chew on that let me get a thinner Rope toys that you can chew on this instead you don’t want them swallowing it but chewing tugging that’s fine that’s fun um there was something else I wanted to say there it’ll come back to me supervision is very important for puppies puppy proof your home by making sure they can’t chew on things that could be harmful or might be valuable to you such as electrical cords harmful or poisonous plants and Foods small items that are choking hazards and of course your favorite shoes what did I say puppy proofing also means removing Temptations like a garbage can cat litter box yep diaper bag ooh yeah that’s a big one or people food now that stuff should be in a puppy’s mouth people food I like to use for trading that’s usually in structured interactions though definitely not laying out and about because then we are going to teach our dogs to counter Surf and jump on tables for food so correct with and with it within reason within reason a puppy can bring so much enjoyment and fun to your home don’t let their cuteness prevent you from being a responsible pet parent if appropriate behaviors are not trained well when they are little they can become dangerous as they grow up a biting puppy is cute a biting adult dog is a hazard okay hold on again re-emphasize this point puppies grow out of chewy phases puppies grow out of chewing puppies grow out of
chewing phases okay um if your dog isn’t getting their needs met for chewies appropriate exercise appropriate brain games and sniffing and walking opportunities
you have a bigger problem on your hands and sometimes that can lead dogs to get restless and stressed out and sometimes it can cause uh a dog to become more like hyper aroused like very very easily excitable or very very easily nervous which then can also lead to the excitability um so I would have focused a little more on meeting our dog’s needs and how to do that what kind of puzzle toys do I like to use what things do I recommend why sniffing is important why you want your dog to sniff on walls you don’t want them to be in a constant like obedient type heel with a very tight leash that doesn’t do anybody any good except for your own ego um so it is a walk together right when I when I walk my dog I walk for them I walk for my dog my clients dogs they’re in a perfect heel but I also allow them the ability to sniff as long as they don’t shoot ahead of me and start pulling they can sniff by my side as much as they want I will stop I will slow down I will let them sniff my my dog he’s got a really fast pace so I have a very I he knows how to heal when I need him to but when I don’t care about trading I also have a special harness a special leash hookup where I just let him pull me around and I walk with him right um again that depends on the breed and your size and your weight and what you’re comfortable with and able to handle Etc but that’s what works for us and he has a fantastic time and when he pulls he actually trims his nails down a lot faster if we go on daily walks and he’s pulling on that walk your dog isn’t going to get that trimmed nail from being in a tight leash heel like it’s not going to happen like definitely not as quickly um all right that being said yeah biting that oftentimes is a socialization thing and or combination with genetics genetics plays a huge role in that let’s see this was by Katara and the last oh my name is Katara okay this is about the puppy hold on I’m the last puppy from my litter to find a home husky Roddy Aussie mix wow so I’ll be a big smart adult dog please let me join your family for years of fun and learning and she’s for adoption at Second Chance Humane Society Animal Resource Center and thrift shops in San Miguel uh in these counties interesting all right fantastic uh what’s the next article we have here all right I want to read this first they do have a wonderful video this is from NCW Life channel it’s amazing how many the more I do this the more channels I’m hearing about they’re usually hyper local places when Tachi pancake okay see again like where is montachi I don’t know puppy raisin Club I don’t know I’m touchy I wish they gave the state okay let’s get to this pancake Farley and Kudzu look professional in their green puppy and training vests you can see they’re patient if not still a little rambunctious but these three pumps are part of a much bigger Vision they’re with the Wenatchee puppy raising Club a group of 15 volunteers who work with guide dogs for the blind the club exclusively raises puppies in the preliminary learning stages of becoming working guide dogs caring for them until they are ready for formal training the club that relies fully on donations and volunteers is looking for more people to help them with their efforts a lot of the times we’ll say raise a
puppy change a life and the life you change may be your own supervising puppy
raiser field manager and Tyson said puppies begin their Journey at the GDB main campus in San Rafael California GDB works with puppy raisers in 10 Western States at two months of age the pups are ready to get going and will be sent by a puppy truck to their next location the puppies will work with razors until they are 16 months focusing on four basic fundamentals good house Behavior good relieving habits good confidence in public and good manageability the puppies are Labrador Retrievers golden retrievers crosses all bread and Crosses all bred by GDB at their main campus these doll these breeds have been most successful at becoming guide dogs and are selectively bred for health confidence manageability and a calm temperament according to Tyson since the wintachi club was established in 2011
they have raised 18 guide dogs and two dogs have become breeders wow that’s a long time 2011 to 2023 is at 12 years Holy Cannoli so in 12 years it’s only been about it’s been 20 dogs total how many dogs is that per year I could count a lot basic math this is why I went to college okay don’t get on me um how many dogs so wait 20 dogs right over 13 years so that’s that’s only a dog and a half per year I don’t know that seems really small that can’t be right maybe they’ve gone some years without dogs
and one is still in active training the other has graduated Nancy Pryor poses with Vera the most recent when Tachi GDP graduate you know in in the video we’ll watch it later we’ll watch it here soon um there are only two puppies in the video so maybe it is a very very small Club while not all puppies graduate with a client become guides they can use their training to become a hearing dog for a person with deafness or support dog for court systems eight dogs though when attacked Wenatchee Club have gone on to other services we support the dog from birth through puppy raising through becoming a guide dog being a guide and retirement Tyson said there’s no dog brought into a program that isn’t taken care of for its entire life volunteers within the one of Wenatchee puppy raisin Club work in capacity that they are comfortable with for some that might be mean being a full-time puppy raisers for others that might mean assisting with fundraising or flyer
design a full-time puppy raiser will have the pup until they are ready to go to formal training this is a position with a large commitment there is the daily care and training sessions that go into raising a puppy while also monitoring the puppy’s
behavior and utilizing teaching moments to help them grow as they mature and learn they become a better behaved dog have different teaching moments are taken into the human world become socialized and learn how to behave appropriately in a human world setting puppy Cub club club leader Barb Dunn said we take them everywhere with us if possible providing the situation and the ability of the puppy
allows and I think that’s really important too because every puppy is going to be out doing training at a different pace I can think of several dogs which I’ve trained directly with that needed more or less time out in public River my dog who’s currently sleeping and completely ignoring me he normally pops his head up when I say his name he’s out he’s so he’s so out it’s such a dreary day today but I remember with him even a good handful of months after I initially got him at eight weeks uh he is so easily excited so easily excitable and this is a genetic trait right I would do three minute training sessions with him three to five minute training sessions and since I wanted to be training for half an hour maybe an hour if I knew he could do it during the day I would time myself set my timer for three minutes pop out of the car go to a low distraction environment parking lot’s a great example train for three minutes really simple easy stuff just focus on me right do your station pad work everything and then go back in the car take a break drive over the next parking spot over do it all again and we would do that for maybe again maybe half an hour maybe an hour depending on the day because every little thing for him would get him excited now I have Joe who is a standard poodle puppy fantastically solid I can go take her out to a brand new place for half an hour and she is not phased she can settle really well she takes everything in stride she’s not easily excitable right and that’s the difference that you have to adjust yourself and your training strategy to the dog that’s in front of you going at their Pace right because our dogs are always communicating with us they’re always telling us what they need the question becomes are we competent and educated enough to know what steps to take next are we communicating efficiently with each other so those are the things to keep in mind a part-time volunteer splits the time with another family where they have the puppy for a few days a week for about a year or have them full time for part of the year there are also puppy Sinners who may commit to a few days a month poppy sitters are around for puppies to exposed to others which is necessary for their training or when puppy raisers are going out of town or on vacation even though we all learn the same techniques people have different picture tone to their voice different inflections may handle the leash slightly differently Dunn said all these things are a little different from person to person by spending time with others the pup becomes more flexible and skilled in their response to a Handler that’s actually a fantastic Point especially the way that guide dogs from a blind runs their program right because every program is going to run a little bit differently uh mine for example puppy goes home to the Handler on the weekends so there’s really no need to worry about that because we already know who the Handler is going to be but in a program like this where you have a hundreds of applicants every year and sometimes a dog is not he like you’ll try it out with with a person and you know then maybe the person a dog aren’t clicking maybe the pace is too fast or too slow maybe the personalities aren’t quite right for each other then you need to switch right that happens too um because they only have a two-week uh
training period where they get to practice with each other right so again it depends on the organization and how it’s run eventually the puppies will be recalled or sent to formal training after being evaluated by Tyson the pups and one when not she usually travel down to the GDB training campus in BO ring Oregon after passing Eight levels of training there they will be paired with someone who has applied for a guide dog that applicant will meet their dog at one of the two campuses and will become part of a class who all work with their new guide dogs together the schooling transportation to and from campus and dogs are all provided to the client for free including follow-up training should they need it a lot of comments that people say you know when they get their guide dog is to lead freedom and inclusion and just get a bigger involvement in community don’t set oftentimes they’ll say it’s like flying instead of using a white cave that’s fantastic I love this article Jordan Gonzalez fantastic work oh I guess we should watch the video now let’s do that for us as razors we can get them very young we get them about eight weeks off the puppy truck and this little guy’s about 10 weeks old um he just came off the puppy truck before Christmas and um so we start out just with really basic stuff yeah um they learn to relieve on command and we get them onto a schedule for that so that we have control over that um they learn to take food nicely and they learned their name and they learn I will say the one saying that always has bugged me a little bit about guide dogs for the blind is that they have all of their dogs on head halters and head halters only I would really like to know if they have any numbers behind neck injuries or neck strains related to that because I know I I heard a quote from a chiropractic
vet and how they really hate head halters because it can cause a lot of cervical injuries and strains and I’ve been told that it can create Whiplash of dogs you know like if you get into a car accident and you flip around I’ve been told it can do that now they do also have a very special conditioning process that these dogs go through as I mean I do as well um but I have a double ended leash system that I do it on right so I have uh the dog is primarily a lot uh leashed on their collar to prevent that Whiplash from occurring and the only time that I actually add any pressure to the headpiece is if I can’t get the dog’s attention or if the dog’s trying to sniff something right and it’s very very light pressure I teach the dog from a very young age to give into the slightest bit of pressure so that that strain and that Whiplash doesn’t happen so just a little anecdote from from my own personal perspective and some basic commands and then they proceed into you know bigger things more commands right right there like the puppy wants to play with the other dog and what does he do he gets the end of it and since it’s the only thing that he has on him that’s connected to a leash it’s it’s pulled right let’s watch that again you know bigger things more commands um and then they proceed into right you know bigger things more commands we take them out into the public to socialize them they need to learn to become comfortable in a human world because if you think about people they do some weird things and they go some weird places right they go to noisy places people do do weird things to church for you know you know three hours all those different things very nice tuck they have to learn to be comfortable in that environment and that is a big thing that we do is the socialization um by the time they leave us as razors um they’re just a very well-mannered very nice dog and confident and yeah I mean look at these dogs how old is he he’s probably like six or seven months old for themselves and they what we want a lot I got very tight on the leash plus an idea and inclusion and just um but I understand why they do I just wish they could also add in the callers they’re using the white cane a lot of times raise a puppy change a life and the life you change may be your own it’s definitely a community of of people that do puppy raising and you meet wonderful friends lifetime connections and little guys too low guys all right well that’s all that I have for you guys today please remember to follow me on my socials you can see me raising Jill the puppy and many other future service dogs as I’m sure there will be in our program we have expanded our program recently so I will be taking on more dogs as long as there’s demand Okay so follow me on my socials at Caitlyn’s animals everywhere I am currently most active on Tick Tock so if you want to see daily training updates what I’m doing with the current dog I’m boarding and training follow me over there all right I’m also on Facebook at Caleb’s animal training um my website is Caitlin’s animals.com and that’s it that’s all I have for you guys so thank you so much for joining I will see you guys on the next one and have a great rest of your week bye guys
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