My puppy This!, is one year old this week. She has some amazing skills. We have also had some challenges. I want to take off the social media “lens” for a minute and get real with the video below.


I’ve seen a lot of words floating around recently like… “exhausted”, “anxious”, “overwhelmed”, “pressure”, “perfectionism”.

And I get it.

There’s a lot going on in the world right now, and so many of us are emotionally taxed… sometimes, we are just trying to make it through the day.

Several times over the last few weeks, I’ve been asked the same question from friends, from students, from people reaching out through a message to me.

The same question: How can I stop feeling like I’m so far behind that I’m lost?

So I started preparing the video above, and in the midst of preparing it, I was sent a letter asking the same question once again. I hope this video helps you realize you’re not alone. We’re all in this together, doing the best we can, one day at a time.

It may be something that may help you find your path again. It may be something a friend who is struggling in silence needs to hear.

Don’t look at what everyone else is doing. Look at where you were last week, give yourself grace, and celebrate where you are today.

Birthday Girl, This!

Over the past year, I’ve shared what This! and I are working on and our progress in many episodes of our Shaped by Dog podcast. If you have resource guarding or your dog is worried about certain things, there will be a podcast episode to help. You can listen or watch and get the transcript for every episode.

In episode 66, “Resource Guarding: Dog vs Dog Aggression“, I covered how I was helping This!, and then did a follow-up in episode 71 about how I  journaled This!’s resource guarding and why it helped fast track success. The follow-up episode is called “Pro Dog Trainer’s Secret to Help Your Naughty Dog“.

In episode 29, I shared how things that are different for our dogs can see them react. So, if that is a challenge you have, “Understanding and Preventing Reactivity and Aggression in Your Dog” will help. You will also want to check out episode 88, “Barrier Frustration: Help for Fence Fighting, Leash Reactivity and Window Guarding“, for actionable strategies.

We’re now at over 100 episodes of Shaped by Dog, so no matter what your challenge, there will be help if you look through the podcast index. There are also several hundred blog posts here for you on many topics. You can use the search feature here and also on my podcast.

The single most important thing that I would like everyone to know is that there can be a better tomorrow for you and your dog.

Consistent effort, daily, is going to take you to an amazing place.

So, happy first birthday to the Schitt’s Creek Bébés! This!’s sister Dream is visiting, so we had two puppies for a birthday photoshoot. Momentum stood in for her daughter Swish, and Tater Salad happily stood in for Mission.

Today I am grateful for This! and all the dogs in my life, and to you for wanting to make a better tomorrow for the dogs in your life.