Learning to Live Happily Ever After

Posts by Madeline Gabriel

Life With Baby – Just Another Day at the Office?

Posted by on Sep 23, 2011 in Dog Training, Pregnancy | 9 comments

Life With Baby – Just Another Day at the Office?

Life is Changing – Did Your Dog Get the Memo? “Whoa, your dog’s in for a big surprise when that baby arrives…” “Your dog’s going to have to get with the program…” Really?  Are you just going to hope your dog figures it out on his own?  And if he doesn’t, what then?  The way people talk, it makes you think there’s nothing you can do but hope for the best. At the very least, you owe it to your dog to honestly...

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Why Your 4 Year Old Can’t “Visit” My Sick Dog

Posted by on Sep 18, 2011 in dog bite prevention, Magnetized Babies, Other People's Kids | 8 comments

Why Your 4 Year Old Can’t “Visit” My Sick Dog

This is kind of an “in the moment” post because it illustrates how we tend to “push” kids on dogs when both the kid and the dog are quite happy in their own space. Here’s how it played out: Main Characters: My 14.5 year old dog a week out from surgery to remove a (thankfully benign) tumor Nice, well-mannered four year old boy who I love dearly and is a frequent visitor to our home Boy’s grandmother who I also love dearly And me, of course Scene: Dog is off...

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Updated Classes for Dogs!

Posted by on Sep 15, 2011 in Pregnancy | 0 comments

Updated Classes for Dogs!

My lecture classes presented through Sharp and Scripps childbirth education programs are chock full of information about safety and planning and managing expectations from pregnancy through preschool.  It’s an excellent stand-alone class and definitely necessary for the safety side of things. As part of the “dog profiling” part of the class, we identify training gaps and individual areas for improvement.  While I provide lots of resources for the “do-it-yourselfers,” I know...

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Your Dog is Not Your Baby…And That’s OK!

Posted by on Aug 18, 2011 in Life With Dog and Baby, Pregnancy | 2 comments

Your Dog is Not Your Baby…And That’s OK!

Is Your Dog Your “First Baby?” Cute puppy faces with those big eyes are irresistible.  In fact, they actually ARE hard to resist because humans are biologically inclined to respond to baby-like faces.  We get that “Aww, how cute!” feeling from a burst of oxytocin and it feels natural to be nurturing and protective.  The bond is cemented when our dogs respond with affection and attachment of their own.  It’s no wonder so many people in my classes express worry about how...

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When a Good Dog Is a Bad Idea

Posted by on Aug 17, 2011 in dog bite prevention, Life With Dog and Baby | 10 comments

Today I saw a young boy of about eleven years old punching his dog to make the dog sit.  One of my kids said he saw the boy trying to ride on the dog and punching the dog again after he fell off.  The boy was also jerking the dog back and forth to make the dog run with him.  All of this while in the company of two girls of about the same age or maybe a little younger. Apparently, he was showing off. The dog?  A Labrador who mostly wagged from time to time as he tried to follow along with...

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