Sunday, February 16, 2014

Beyond the Dog: Preparing Your Dog for a New Baby

Linn Boyke, Dog Behavior Expert

Congratulations! You are expecting a baby and one of the most asked questions is….”How will my dog react to the baby?” The answer lays way Beyond the Dog, because the truth is that the preparation and responsibility is with the dog parents. I have encountered countless clients over the years that have been backed into a situation where the owner had not known they needed to prepare the dog for all the changes in the household and their long loved family pet ends up being given away or even worse in a shelter due to what is perceived as “aggressive” behavior. Behind so-called aggression is confusion, a dog’s natural dog state is to please their family and through preparation, consistency and boundaries – families can all live in perfect harmony together, including the family pet.
  1. You’re Pregnant….begin the training NOW! One of the most challenging situations I encounter is when a client waits to prepare their dog until the week before the baby is due. You, as parents, have had nine whole months to prepare for the big life change that is baby. Make sure to give your dog the same nine months of preparation; it will make all the difference.
  2. YOU are responsible. With over 15-years of working with dogs, including dogs that are perceived as dangerous, my one and most important consistent belief is that the human is responsible for the dog – just as they are responsible for their child.
  3. Energy counts. Dogs feed off of their human’s energy – if the human is extremely anxious, the dog will be too. This is a nervous and exciting time for everyone, it is more important than ever to create a home environment where your dog has a place to go where s/he feels safe and cozy.

I am thrilled to be joining The Pump Station & Nurtury™ and creating a program that can empower all new moms and dads with the tools needed to create a harmonious home for the entire family – including the dog. Looking forward to meeting you all in person.

NEW “Sizzling” Hot Topic Lecture at The Pump Station & Nurtury Locations
  • Tuesday, March 11th at 6:30pm in Santa Monica, Call 310-998-1981 to register
  •  Wednesday, March 12th at 6:30pm in Hollywood, Call 323-469-5300 to register
  • Wednesday, March 19th at 1pm in Westlake Village, Call 805-777-7179 to register

Linn Boyke began his work with dogs in 1997, after the tragic loss of his dog Ginger fueled his desire to help other dogs. He started with a dog walking business and later, began offering private lessons of training in obedience. Linn quickly found that traditional methods of training had little effect on his clients' dog behavioral issues. He wanted to provide the help they needed and began searching for answers to the concerns they had about their dogs. When he failed to find this information, Linn became very frustrated. It became clear to Linn that his emotions had a dramatic effect on the dogs, which caused their behaviors to escalate. He nearly gave up all together before finally hearing about a man people were calling the "Dog Whisperer", Cesar Millan. After spending only a few minutes with Cesar, Linn knew that he was in the right place to get the information that he sought. With Cesar's guidance and consistent invitation to be in the present moment, Cesar helped Linn to discover that he already had the answers. It clearly was not a dog issue, but a lack of communication. Click here to read more…