Zuzu's Birthday Issue
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In This Newsletter:

Zuzu's Birthday Issue

Tip of the Month: Is an assertive dog good or bad?
Additional Articles: What’s the “magic” number for maturity? | Exposure to new things, Halloween version | Getting in touch with her inner Terrier
Peak Power Dog Treats in local retail:  You can now find our treats at Hero's Pets in Littleton! But don't worry, you may still purchase directly from us as always. 
Calendar and Group Class Schedules: Upcoming Classes in Southwest Littleton & Castle Rock/Sedalia | Upcoming events at The Light of Dog Farm.
Our most current offers, discount and coupons:  Please click here
Fall has arrived this week in Colorado with cooler weather and especially, fall colors.  Here's a recent pic of Sue, Romeo and Zuzu on a recent fall colors hiking trip we took near Tabernash, Colorado.  Send us your fall color pic with your dog or post to Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #dogs andfallcolors and be sure to tag @thelightofdog so we can come check it out! 

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Like The Light Of Dog Newsletter: Zuzu's Birthday Issue on Facebook

Is an assertive dog good or bad?

Zuzu will turn 2 years old on October 28 (2015). She was just six weeks old when we brought her home. Just a tiny little thing. But even before we brought her home, we could see she was going to be a tough cookie who stood up for herself. We first met her when she was just under three weeks old. We visited her each week until we brought her home. During one of our last visits, one of her brothers stepped on her or bumped into her and she whipped around and snarled at him. That was a sign of things to come!

When we needed to collect Zuzu or direct her somewhere she did not want to go, her first response was to get feisty. She was an assertive dog who knew what she wanted and was not afraid to say so. And not afraid to stand up to anyone who tried to tell her otherwise.assertive dog

At nearly two years old, she has come a long way. She has learned how to handle herself in better ways. She has learned how to communicate in less obnoxious ways. She has learned that sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to do. That’s life. Does she still get feisty sometimes? Oh, absolutely, but we know that is a part of her personality that will never completely go away. But that does not mean we blindly accept it and make excuses for her. She has learned how to control herself better and is continuing to do so.

I often hear from clients that they were told by previous trainers or other people that you can never change certain behaviors. If a dog has bitten someone, they will always bite. If a dog has darted out the door and run off, they will always do so. If a dog has killed a small animal, they will always have a taste for blood. Some of these behaviors can be difficult to change, but it does not mean the dog is not capable of controlling their impulses and learning better ways to respond to situations.

Rather, these tendencies – whether they are breed tendencies or specific to that individual – are merely things we take note of and understand how they are going to help or hinder our end goal. They are not an excuse, but they do help us understand where we might need to focus more of our efforts.

Do I wish Zuzu were a little less assertive dog about things sometimes? Yes, surely. But there are also times when I love her ability to assert herself and not be easily pushed around. Depending on the circumstances, an undesirable trait in one case can be a highly desired trait in another situation. It all depends on your perspective.

While Zuzu’s assertiveness can seem like a detriment when it contradicts what I want her to do, it is also a desirable trait when she needs to get past something that frightens her or when she has to deal with another dog who can be a bully and push others around. Because of her particular traits, she is resilient and able to move past things that other dogs would have a hard time moving on from.

Happy birthday to my resilient little pistol, Zuzu!

Additional Related Articles

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Now available in local retail

You can now find our treats at Pet Outfitters in Greenwood Village (at Holly & Orchard) and Hero's Pets in Littleton (near Wadsworth and Bowles). But don't worry, you may still purchase directly from us as always. 

Like The Light Of Dog Newsletter: Zuzu's Birthday Issue on Facebook


Upcoming Classes in Southwest Littleton Area
  • Puppy Preschool:  open enrollment on Sundays and Wednesdays
  • Puppy Recess:  most Sundays noon to 1 pm
  • Basic Training:  new classes start Sunday 10/25 & Wednesday 10/7
  • Juvenile Delinquents:  new classes start Sunday 11/1 & Thursday 10/29
  • Rally for Fun:  new class starts Sunday 11/1
  • Polite Pooches in Public: new classes will start in the spring
  • Fun & Games Class: new class starts Thursday 10/29
  • The Nose Knows: none at this time
  • Canine Good Citizen Class & Test: none at this time
  • Agility for Fun: none at this time
Upcoming Classes in Castle Rock/Sedalia
  • Basic Training: new classes will resume in the spring
  • Juvenile Delinquents: new class will start when enough people are signed up
  • Advanced Classes:  if you are interested in Agility for Fun, Rally for Fun, Fun & Games or other classes at this location, please let us know.
Upcoming Events at The Light of Dog Farm
  • Nature Walks  No more scheduled for this year. Nature walks will resume in 2016. 
  • Is feeding raw dog food right for me? No more scheduled for this year. More will be scheduled in 2016. Click here for registration information.

Click here for our complete group class & events schedule with available spaces

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To see our most current offers, discounts and coupons:

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The “Kids”

Zuzu (Greyhound) and Romeo (Vizsla): Social directors, personal trainers, and chief protectors from potential intruders. 

Wife & Husband

Sue Brown, behavior consultant, dog trainer and writer extraordinaire and Ed Soehnel, product and farm manager grunt.
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