Trouble walking your dog?

On almost every walk in my neighborhood I see at least one dog that has trouble leash walking. What I mean by this is the dog barks and lunges at every person and other dog they see. What’s worse is, it’s my dog! Just because I want my dog to walk well on the leash, isn’t going to make it happen. So many times I find myself rearranging my schedule to avoid ” the best time of the day” walks or avoiding a walk altogether because I’m not up to the challenge of managing my dogs behavior. It becomes a vicious cycle-with a lack of both exercise and stimulation leading to my dog who is harder to handle when she is taken on walks. So, the walks tend to go towards walking into more secluded areas and the problem with socialization increases.

Why do some dogs have this problem and others don’t?

I can’t speak for every dog but some probably feel trapped when they’re on a leash and are approached with another dog. They don’t feel free to run away if they need to. Dogs who explode at other dogs for this reason are behaving as though their best defense is a good offense. “I’ll get you before you get me”. I know this is part of Cinnamin’s problem. If we have plenty of space to move over, she does much better.

Another reason why a dog maybe nervous when another dog approaches them is because they may have been traumatized by another dog and are now afraid of approaching dogs. We may never know this with a rescue pup.

Perhaps your dog never had a chance to be properly socialized around unfamiliar dogs, and is only comfortable with familiar dogs. Some dogs may be naturally shy around any unfamiliar dog, even though their owners have provided them opportunities to socialize.

Genetics play an important role in all aspects of canine behavior, and shyness is highly heritable, causing even some well-socialized dogs to be nervous around unfamiliar dogs.

Not all reactive dogs are afraid of other dogs. Some dogs get so excited when they see another dog that they work themselves into a frenzy. A high level of emotional arousal, combined with frustration of being on a leash and not being able to interact, is a common factor that motivates some dogs to bark and lunge. A dog may start out by charging forward to try to play with another dog, but when they leash stops them, over and over, he/she may learn to associate feeling frustrated with the approach of another dog. This is sort of like “road rage” for humans. We get into our car, thinking “today will be the day for a smooth ride to work”. Then we hit the traffic or weather or construction AGAIN and we just lose it. Frustration sets in. Dogs may begin by trying to run over to play with a buddy, but after months and years of being restricted, their enery and frustration can spiral into a mess of emotions….like humans with their “road rage”.

Another explanation for dogs who bark and lunge at others is a learned association between seeing another dog and the aversive feeling associated of getting choked by the collar. It’s easy to imagine a dog thinking, in some canine kind of way, “I always get hurt when I see another dog on leash, so go away!” So let’s look at this successful idea that hopefully will help make walks so much calmer and nicer for both you and your dog.

“Watch” command for a safer, calmer, no road-rage walk

The watch command gives your dog something other to do than bark and lunge. We have to give our dogs another option to the aggressive behavior. All they know isn’t working well for them or us. The watch command has them look to us to see what they want us to do. It has them refocus, on us, their master aka, the alpha of us two. Now our pup is no longer being stimulated by another dog walking by revving up out of control. She/he is now focused on our face, calming down and happily anticipating a wonderful treat (be it food or praise). This maybe very hard to imagine, but what do you have to lose by training your dog and yourself a new behavior strategy to make a seriously stressful walk a more calming one?

Start teacher Watch in a quiet place where they are no distractions. Say “Watch” and wave a moist, smelly piece of food an inch away from your dog’s nose. Bring the hand with the food up to your face to lure your dog’s eyes up to yours. You can encourage this behavior by smooching or clicking your tongue or moving away a step or two. Once your hand is up by your face, encourage eye contact between you and your dog by smiling, cocking your head, wiggling your finger beside your eye and praising with “Good dog, Good dog.” Use a voice that is both calm and happy.

After a second or two, say “okay” to release your dog, then give your dog the treat. Be sure you don’t move the treat away from your face before you have told your dog, “okay”. If you do, your dog will think the movement is the release, and that could cause trouble later. Don’t worry if the dog is watching the treat and not your eyes, eventually we’ll get to that. Have your hand movement consistent. Always go from their nose to your eyes.

After you say “okay”, either hand your dog her treat, or toss it on the ground. Some dogs have a hard time staying still and focusing on your face when they’ve seen another dog, and even the best treat in the world is barely enough for them. These dogs do best if the reinforcement for turning their head toward yours is a quick run in the other direction.

Once you and your dog have mastered Watch in a quiet place with little distractions, start asking for Watch with mild distractions. As soon as Watch is going well at moderate levels of distraction, start asking for it when your dogs sees anther dog. Of course, be in control of the situation. You want it to be a success so only ask for a Watch if another dog is far enough away that your dog will see him, but not go crazy. Try to anticipate the moment your dog is about to turn her head toward the other dog, and say “watch” the microsecond she’s actually looking toward the dog. Your goal at this stage of training is to set up situations where your dog sees another dog at a distance far enough away that she can still concentrate, to say Watch immediately each time she looks at the other dog, and make her very glad she did. If she looks back at the other dog, that just gives you another time to practice!

Right think out the training progression. You need to train your dog from no stimulation to everyday walk situations slowly. You don’t want to blow the training you’ve started! Be very patient. I suggest the following…

-in the house, when no one else is around and you both can focus on each other.

-now go into a room with a window and have the window open. My dog loves to watch out the window, so this could be a distraction.

-In the back or front yard at a quiet time, with no one in sight.

-In the back or front yard when it’s a bit busier with a bird or squirrel.

-In the house when one other person is present but doing their own thing.

-In the house when several other people are present

-In the front yard when someone else is outside

-In the front yard when someone else and their pooch is outside

-On the sidewalk, as your dog walks toward a dog she is friendly with, who is 25 yards away.

-on the sidewalk, as your dog sees a dog who she’s charged at numerous times in the past, who is a block away.

-In the backyard as a squirrel rushes past.

-on the sidewalk, when your dog looks at an unfamiliar dog who is 30 feet away walking toward you both.

-On the sidewalk, when an unfamiliar dog walks by. 


This really does work. Your dog is worth it! Keep at it! It seems tedious but it will all be worth it in the end!

Review of the top carpet cleaners for pets

A carpet cleaner should come standard with a pet!  Whether it be mud tracked in, drool, body odors or urination, a pet owner will have to clean their carpets!  Not all carpet cleaners are created equal and it’s important to use one that extracts all of the water and bodily fluids out of the carpet.  There are two types of carpet cleaners when it comes to pets.  One is the carpet cleaner that is more of a steamer and cleans the whole carpet, the other is a spot cleaner. The spot cleaner works really well with the urination accidents.  Throughout the rest of this post, I will review the cleaners that I own or know of someone who owns one.

My top pick is a bissell.

The BISSELL DeepClean Deluxe Pet 36Z9 is among the most preferred and best carpet cleaners for pet stains.It is light weight, weighing 32 pounds. The cleaner’s innovative clean shot trigger directly formulates the stains targeted for removal.  The pet hair collector basket makes things easy by trapping and disposing the debris and pet hair within the basket.  This is extremely convenient.  The basket detaches and be taken to the garbage can, cleaned out and rinsed clean.  On the other hand, the stain trapper collects pet messes in a container and the dual powered brushes with the help of 12 cleaning rows pulls deep dirt from the carpet. Water temperature is maintained constantly while cleaning because of the heat wave technology.  This machine is easy to fill with water and cleaning solution in one compartment.  The dirty water is then suctioned into another separate compartment.  This machine is easy to take apart and clean.  The cleaning goes from edge to edge of the machine, making it easy to get up close to the baseboard.  One of the most important things to look at is the suction.  The suction has to be powerful in order to get the water, cleaning solution and urine/mess out of the carpet. 

    buy here:   ‘>

    Second pick

    This is a Hoover.  Hoover’s have been around for years and years.  This steam cleaner has a powerful name brand behind it.  If you’re looking for a carpet cleaner that does more than eliminate pet stains and odors, Hoover Power Scrub Elite is the best choice.

    A cleaner made for high traffic areas, the Hoover Power Scrub Elite is always ready to take care of pet hair and dander, dirt, grimes and stains. This machine can be used in three ways: deep cleaning, quick cleaning, and rinsing. To effectively eliminate embedded dirt and stains, you simply switch it to the ‘deep clean’ mode. If you’re in a rush, go for the ‘quick clean’ mode with heat force that speeds up the drying time to 45 minutes, letting you set foot on the carpet in no time. If you like to wash the carpets with soap and water, set it to ‘rinse mode’, or if you want to remove soap residue just rinse with water.

    Furthermore, the tank of this cleaner is 25% larger so you won’t have to refill it more often. It also comes with a concentrated cleaning formula that sanitizes and deodorizes pet waste and urine while being phosphate-free and septic safe.

    buy a hoover here… ‘>

      Next is the Rug doctor

      Rug doctor is one of the top names in carpet steam cleaning!  This one is a hand held one that targets those specific messes.  The Rug Doctor Portable Spot Cleaner is designed to battle dirt and grime, this cleaning machine is a powerful and portable cleaner at your fingertips for all of those spots your full-size carpet cleaner won’t reach. Built with 2 times the suction capabilities and a powerful motorized brush that moves 1,200 times per minute, this spot cleaner deep cleans each carpet fiber and breaks down stains confidently—leaving no dirt or debris behind.  It is built with a 10 amp motor for twice the suction power than most other portable spot cleaners.  This is huge!!! Suction is the number one key component in carpet cleaning!  The powerful oscillating motorized brush can be used on stairs, carpet, area rugs, upholstery and car interior.  The Removable, clear water tanks let you see when it’s time to refresh the cleaning solution and are easy to wash.  It’s nice to have the upright cleaning machines when cleaning the whole carpet, but I definitely get out my hand held cleaners for those isolated areas!

      buy here:   ‘>

        Finally, a Spot bot

           This is a Bissell Spot Bot.  This is a must have!!!! You set it in place, over the stain, turn it on and you can walk away.  It has a beeping noise when it’s done.  It’s sooooo nice because it does the work for you! 

        This machine is equipped with two preset cleaning cycles, this easy-to-use portable carpet cleaner automatically sprays, brushes, and suctions to remove both surface pet stains and tough, set-in stains. Its unique cleaning foot with DeepReach Technology delivers water and cleaning formula deep into carpet fibers and gently scrubs for permanent pet-stain removal. For ultimate versatility, BISSELL SpotBot Pet features an easy-to-use, on-board hose and tool to clean pet messes on upholstery, stairs, auto interiors, and other hard-to-reach areas. To be honest, I never used the on-board hose.  But the rest of the machine works like magic!!!  Bissell is donating $10 to the BISSELL Pet Foundation™ with purchase.  This machine also comes with a 2 year warranty.

          buy here… ‘>

          Along with buying a vacuum that picks up pet hair, a carpet steamer/cleaner is a must!

          With our furry family members, especially rescue, there are going to be messes and accidents.  I don’t want anyone to walk into my house and be able to SMELL that I have dogs.  The trick with the wet messes is to get to them before they dry.  Shampooing and suctioning back up pet urine when it’s wet is so much more effective than getting to it after it’s dried.  When looking for a machine, I first look for great suction and cleaning ability and then I look to see if the machine is easy to clean itself.  I don’t want something with too  many parts or too many screws to take a part.  If that’s the case, I just won’t use it.  I steam clean my whole carpet 3 times a year and now that Cinnie is house broken completely, I only have to use my hand-helds when my daughter’s dogs visit!  Sometimes Cinnie has a poop accident in the house if there has been several days of rain or thunderstorms.  Cinnie HATES water/rain/thunderstorms.  So, I ended up using my hand held for more poop accidents than urine accidents.  I simply clean up as much of the poop itself with a tissue and throw it in the toilet.  Then I set to work cleaning with one of my hand helds.  

          Happy cleaning!!!!

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          Prices are exactly the same for you if your purchase is through an affiliate link or a non-affiliate link. You will not pay more by clicking through to the link.

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          Best vacuums to remove pet hair.

          Pet hair on my clothes, on my rug, on my couch, on my counter and dare I say, yes, my tongue! During that season when my dogs shed it’s horrible.  I can’t even pet them and dog hair goes floating into the air, the floor and my clothes.  I walk across the carpet and my socks have hair clinging to them!  I brush Cinnamon but I just can’t seem to get all the hair off of her.  I suppose I should get my ducts cleaned once a year too but I don’t.  That’s why for me, it’s really important to have a good vacuum.

          Chasing pet hair piles and how to clean them efficiently!

                I keep falling in love with dogs that shed!

          I am a vacuum junky

          I love vacuums and I have one for each floor of my house, including my basement.  I also have a separate one for my hardwood floors and my carpets and my stairs!!!

          The following are my reviews on vacuums that help remove pet hair.

          Strongest suction of any vacuum!This is a dyson.

          This is my number one pick for the price.  I own this dyson.

          -Even more power for tough tasks

          -Self-adjusting cleaner head

          -Seals in suction across carpet, wood, vinyl, and tile floors

          -Tangle-free Turbine tool, stair tool, combination tool included.

          -empty the bin with the push of a button

          -It is light weight

          -All the rounded edges make it very movable and easy to manage.

          -there are all sorts of joints that can be easily pulled apart and cleaned!

          This can be a pro or a con….There isn’t a bag… it’s a canister.  I have learned that the filter needs to be cleaned on canisters monthly.

          Buy a dyson here:                                            ‘>

          This is a Riccar vacuum cleaner and this is my second choice.

          I own this vacuum too.  The only reason that this is my second choice is because it’s not as easy to manuever as the dyson and it’s heavier than the dyson.

          Riccar canister vacuums are suited to homes with a variety of flooring surfaces. With various nozzle options and floor attachments, Riccar canisters easily move from carpet to hard floors. In my house I have hardwood floors throughout on the main floor with area rugs in each room. It’s so convenient to have a vacuum that easily moves from a rug to a hardwood floor.

          -The attachment hose actually pulls out with a push of a button, to be longer so it’s very easy to clean areas that are higher.  It’s  available to tackle every cleaning task.

          Again…pro or con…This vacuum has a bag.  I like having both.  The bags that go with the Riccar are HEPA and allergy free. The bags are part of a bigger filtration system that the vacuum is known for itself.

          Buy a Riccar here:                                             ‘>

          You may ask why I own so many different brands of vacuums.  Each vacuum seems to offer something different.  I am a tall person so it’s important to me to be able to clean the walls and the corners near the ceiling.  I want to have a vacuum that has a hose that reaches high easily.

          I remember the vacuums of yesteryear when we would have to dust after we vacuum because the bags would leak so much dust!  We’ve come along way with good suction and good construction!

          My next choice is this Hoover. 

          I used to own a Hoover for 20 years!  Who doesn’t love a Hoover!

          • -This Hoover is their best-cleaning bagless upright vacuum.
          • -Quick pass brush roll provides 2x faster cleaning
          • – clean surface debris without having to pass over the same area multiple times
          • -WindTunnel 3 technology
          • – creates 3 channels of suction to lift and remove surface debris and deep down embedded dirt.
          • 40 foot cord length – continuously clean from room to room without re-plugging
          • Includes pivoting dusting tool, pet Turbo tool, telescoping extension Wand and crevice tool. Dirt Cup Capacity: 1.42 Liters, Nozzle Width: 15 inches
          • 7-Position Height Adjustment – Settings easily adjust from deep carpet to hard floor surfaces

          A Hoover has been around for a very long time!  It used to have all medal parts.  That was when appliances lasted a life time! It was my very first vacuum! Hoover was known as top of the line for years.  It still is an amazing vacuum.  With the advancement of technology Hoover has kept right up including the “new” wind tunnel advancements.

          Buy a Hoover here… ‘>

          This is a Bissell.

          While I’ve never owned a bissel vacuum cleaner, I own a bissell steam carpet cleaner                                     and love it!!  Along with vacuuming pet hair, pet stains are a major issue!  I have two Bissell’s that I use for removing pet stains.  Although, that is not what I am reviewing here, I love the Bissell brand!

          • -Maximize pet hair removal with triple action brush roll + scatter-free technology-Automatic cord rewind with 27’ power cord so you never have to wrap a cord again
          • -Swivel steering for easy cleaning around furniture and obstacles
          • -Edge-to-edge cleaning with powerful edge suction and edge sweep bristles to clean edges and corners
          • -Specialized pet tools include pet hair corner tool and pet turbo eraser tool to lift dirt and hair from stairs, carpet, and upholstery

          buy a bissell here:                                             ‘>

          I truly love my Cinnamon, but this dog hair thing really bothers me!  I hope the review of these vacuums help you and I hope you leave a comment telling me what your favorite vacuum is for pet hair!

                         I love my pup but I don’t love wearing her hair!

          Some posts may contain affiliate links. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

          Canine fashion career?

          The new and upcoming trend is canine fashion career! There is a college in New York City, Fashion Institute of Technology, that is known as one of the world’s leading higher educational facilities for fashion design. It offers a certificate program in Pet Product Design and Marketing. The brainchild of Professor Janet Brav and Assistant Professor Deborah David, the noncredit program offers six courses, including Pet Accessory Design Studio and Quick Sketching for the Pet Product Business.

          Is there a market for dog clothes??

          Sydney our model!

          Overall spending in the pet industry is at an all-time high, according to the American Pet Products Association. Canine couture and high-end fashion for discriminating dogs took quite a bite out of the nearly $51 billion spent in 2011 on our pets.

          If you are looking for a new business, this maybe the one for you!

          So you want dabble in buying clothes?

          What size is my dog? Does it go by breed or weight?

          It goes by measurement. How do I measure my dog? Here’s how: With the dog standing up, run a tape measure from the base of the dog’s neck (where the collar would sit) and to the base of the tail. The majority of dog clothes use this measurement. Knowing your dog’s chest measurement will ensure a good fit, too. Take the tape measurement and wind it around your dog’s chest. Most serious dog clothiers will have a measurement chart. Go to They offer a wide variety of cute clothes!

          Can you resist this?h

          My dog dresses better than me!

          I’m not quite sure when the fad started to dress our pups like little divas! But I’m all in! From the cute t-shirts, to the holiday outfits to the warm winter coats and yes, snow pants.

          It all started when my daughter got herself the cutest Pomeranian chihuahua named Ginger. Ginger is 20 pounds and in our cold Illinois winter, our little Ginger needed to be kept warm! Her little body would shake and shiver outside! And yes, Ginger goes everywhere with Sarah.

          Sarah and Ginger at the blessing of the animals at our church

          Before Ginger, we had bigger dogs, a lab and a retriever and I never dreamed of having them wear clothes! They were so active they were warm all the time. Now I have Cinnamon who LOVES the cold! She sits on my back deck in 9 degree weather and enjoys being outside!

          So, why do we dress our dogs? One obvious reason is to be kept warm.

          Sugarplum is our little 5 pound pup! She needs her sweater!

          For old, bald, thin, tiny or ill dogs a layer to provide warmth or waterproofing in cold weather may be beneficial. Greyhound and whippet owners have long used coats for them in very cold weather.

          There are also clothing geared toward senior and other special needs pets, meeting real needs such as protecting the paws, and keeping the pet warm while treating joint conditions.” You can find “therapy jackets” for pets with aches and pains including hip dysplasia and canine arthritis.

          Ginger does love her sweaters!

          Who can resist a Christmas sweater to have our furry family members get in the holiday spirit? How about a Saint Patrick’s day t-shirt? And, of course, we can’t forget Halloween!!!!!

          Doesn’t she look like a queen in her white coat??

          As long as our dogs will tolerate the clothing, I don’t see why we can’t have a little fun!!