Tag Archives: interviews

Fearful Dog Tips

Fearful DogFearful dog behavior can be quite a challenge to live with and witness. It’s both frustrating and heartbreaking to watch a fearful dog navigate a world populated with scary sights and sounds. Our hearts go out to these poor shy creatures that are often even afraid of their own shadow. But what to do? How does one go about making a shy dog more comfortable in her environment? Is it okay to comfort your dog when he’s feeling nervous? Should you ignore the behavior?


In this interview, dog trainer Amy Cook answers these questions and provides empathic insight into life with a shy canine. Amy is a shy dog specialist who is also working towards her doctorate in Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley with a focus on the human/canine relationship. She is also the owner and moderator of the Shy-K9s Yahoo Group, which is an excellent resource for people who are dealing with fearful dogs.


In this interview, Amy and I chat about the origin of shyness, what defines it, the trial and tribulations of living with a shy dog, and how to best address shyness or fear from a behavioral standpoint.


Is a shy dog born or made?


What are the chances that a shy dog will make a full recovery and overcome her fears, and to what degree?


How do you integrate a shy dog into your home and how do you build trust in your relationship with your fearful dog?


Most importantly Amy wants everyone to know that it is not really possible to reinforce fear and make it worse. Fear is an emotion and emotions cannot be so easily manipulated or contrived operantly. A frightened dog deserves comfort and a safe place to hide and peek while you do your best to resolve the issue via classical conditioning and training, which will take some time, patience, and understanding.


Please listen to the podcast below to hear Amy answer the questions above and more. If you’d like to learn more about fearful dog behavior and training, or have a shy canine and would like to reach Amy directly please join the Shy-K9s group on Yahoo.



Animal Cafe Opens March 7!

Animal Café is putting the finishing touches on the place, anticipating  next week’s opening night!  Settle in with your dogs and other two-and-four-legged friends and check out our new podcast/chat menu. We’ve got lots of tasty selections of interviews and live chats each week: Authors, activists, trainers, veterinarians, media personalities, industry movers and shakers, and assorted experts and enthusiasts.

Look for a new interview on this site every Monday. Listen at your leisure, then come back on Wednesday night at 9pm EST for a conversation with guests.  Ask questions or just lurk – we blog readers are good at that — and join in when the mood moves you.

Animal Cafe’s mission is to inform, amuse, surprise and educate by adding new dimensions to current thinking on a wide range of topics of interest to animal lovers.  Eric Goebelbecker, CPDT-KA (Dog Spelled Forward),  Dr. Lorie Huston, DVM (The Pet Health Care Gazette), and Edie Jarolim, Author, Pet Travel Expert (Will My Dog Hate Me) join Mary Haight, Founder, Animal Welfare advocate  (Dancing Dog Blog) in asking you to sit back, relax, and enjoy.

Here are the specials for March (podcast upload date followed by chat date):

March 7/9 –  Marjie Alonso, President, Executive Director International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants with Eric Goebelbecker

March 14/16 – Jacque Redford, longtime breeder of Rhodesian Ridgebacks on  dog breeding standards, with Dr. Lorie Huston

March 21/23 – Mary-Alice Pomputious, DogJaunt, Pet Travel Blogger, Expert on traveling with a small dog, with Edie Jarolim

March 28/30 – Jane Velez-Mitchell, NYT best selling author, CNN’s HLN host of Issues with Jane Velez-Mitchell with Mary Haight

See you in the Animal Chat Café!  Reserve your table: Wednesday nights, 9pm EST.