Sunday, December 6, 2015

Lisa D. Edwards's "Please Don't Bite the Baby, and Please Don't Chase the Dogs"

Lisa Edwards, CPDT-KA, CDBC, is a professional dog trainer and dog behavior consultant, a Pet Partners evaluator and instructor, and an AKC Canine Good Citizen evaluator. Her book A Dog Named Boo was a London Times bestseller.

Edwards has been training dogs professionally and performing animal-assisted therapy since 1999. She has trained hundreds of therapy dogs and service dogs for veterans and individuals with PTSD. She is the lead trainer and behavior consultant for the Animal Rescue Foundation–Beacon and the Danbury Animal Welfare Society. Edwards also lectures on dog/child safety, runs webinars for Pet Partners, and operates a teaching and consulting business, Three Dogs Training.

Edwards applied the “Page 99 Test” to her new book, Please Don't Bite the Baby (and Please Don't Chase the Dogs): Keeping Our Kids and Our Dogs Safe and Happy Together, and reported the following:
From page 99:
- Some folks like a go-bag. I don’t usually put one together since the things in it might expire by the time I would use it. Instead, I keep all emergency supplies and equipment in the same cabinet so I can easily access what I need or throw it into a bag.

» Dry baby formula or breast pump, many bottles, diapers and diapering supplies, along with multiple changes of clothing for the baby (and you, too—let’s face it, a messy poop can get everywhere), and a few favorite toys to occupy the baby.

» Pet food and medications, feeding and water bowls—one for each pet.

» Leashes, harnesses, and collars. Be sure they fit ahead of time. Depending on your pet, you may also need towels and blankets.

» ID tags with phone numbers, rabies tags, and the rabies certificate. One easy thing to do is make a copy of your pet’s rabies certificate as soon as the vet gives it to you and keep it in the glove compartment of your car. This will come in handy if your dog ever gets lost or picked up by animal control.

- You may want a crate for your dog for a number of reasons. If your dog is small, it will be easier for you, but with bigger dogs that are not friendly to strangers or other dogs, a crate will allow for safe, movable containment. Be sure to think about this ahead of time and ask shelters about crate requirements or restrictions.

» If you cannot all stay together, have a list of boarding facilities in and out of your area in case you must board your pets for the short- or long-term.
Each chapter in Please Don’t Bite the Baby, And Please Don't Chase the Dogs is split between a narrative memoir in the first half and training tips in the second half. Page 99 of Please Don’t Bite the Baby lands in the middle of the tips portion of Chapter Six, Reflections After the Storm, and is somewhat representative of the other tips sections of the book.

While page 99’s tips are primarily an outline of storm preparedness and management strategies for families with pets as it relates to the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy that left us without water, heat and electricity for ten days, the tips sections in other chapters revolve more around training and behavioral advice along with other management and preparedness considerations.

I chose to split Please Don’t Bite the Baby’s chapters into half memoir and half training tips because over the years I have discovered that allowing clients and students to see how the skills and behaviors we are teaching our dogs relate to real-life experiences makes it easier to understand the importance of these skills and motivates the humans to work harder on the training because they can see an applicable useful outcome.

If Page 99 could point back to the narrative section of Chapter Six, it would point to this passage:
Indy weathered the storm better than the dogs…the dogs were already stressed by the sound of the storm and the following confusion. It was difficult to navigate the house with the few lights the portable generator could power and there was no light at all in the yard at night. When power goes out we humans miss all the amenities, but the dogs notice things on a different level. Without electricity, our homes lose their regular hum and many dogs are sensitive to this...

By day seven, Indy’s aunties had their power restored. He and I went to stay there while Lawrence tried to prevent the pipes from freezing by keeping fires going in the fireplace, as he looked after the confused and stressed animals.
Visit Lisa J. Edwards's website.

Writers Read: Lisa Edwards.

Coffee with a Canine: Lisa J. Edwards & Pinball.

--Marshal Zeringue