Bringing out the best in a cat or dog is a hands-on task. Seeing it in a video is often better than reading it. My goal with these videos is to make behavior management easier to understand and implement.

Biting & Agitated at the Veterinary Clinic

By drjeffnichol | January 29, 2024 | Comments Off on Biting & Agitated at the Veterinary Clinic
video thumbnail

Most dogs who try to bite or escape in a veterinary clinic are frightened. You can reduce anxiety by slowly and gently leading your dog from behind a squatting doctor. A dog who may bite should wear a basket muzzle. We shot this video with my own dog, Miss America. She has passed on now. She was an excellent actress, not to mention a delightful pet. We miss her still.

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Fowl in Tuscany – Happy, Not Crowded, Not Factory

By drjeffnichol | January 22, 2024 | Comments Off on Fowl in Tuscany – Happy, Not Crowded, Not Factory
free range chickens

Who wants to be crowded like a bunch of sardines, which are quite dead in the can by the way? These chickens and geese enjoy a big enclosure where they can pursue behaviors that are natural to their species, like pecking the ground for bugs and rolling in the dirt. Nobody in this group has their nose in anyone else’s business. Pet lovers take note: adopting too many cats or dogs leads to crowding and stress. Aggression and physical disease are a common result. These happy wing flappers laid really tasty eggs. We just got back from their home at…

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Cat Mischief? Bad Behavior?

By drjeffnichol | December 18, 2023 | Comments Off on Cat Mischief? Bad Behavior?

Cat parents often custom-fit activities for their indoor kitties that keep them engaged in activities that bring out their wildness in good ways. Here’s the lowdown from an excellent cat parent. “The dryer balls got so full of his hair, when used for their original intended purpose, that they were actually “shedding” his hair back on to our clean clothes while in the dryer!  I solved this problem when I replaced them with soft plastic dryer balls and gave him the “furry” ones to play with. The pink “tunnel” is an old pop-up laundry basket (with the bottom removed) that…

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Dogs who Never Listen

By drjeffnichol | December 11, 2023 | Comments Off on Dogs who Never Listen
Mick 1st Place Rally Novice 12-10-23

Just because you love your dog doesn’t mean they do as their told. Frustrating. People yell, jerk the leash, and repeat commands. Any dog can learn to earn its person’s attention, along with tasty snacks. You can have a good time together, like my dog Mick and I do. Have a look at us in Rally competition (like obedience but more fun). Do you notice him watching me with that relaxed tail wag? Sandia Dog Obedience Club in Albuquerque is the place for good dogs to learn better.

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A dog with a Job is Never Bored

By drjeffnichol | December 4, 2023 | Comments Off on A dog with a Job is Never Bored

Mick and his doggy daddy (ah, that’s me) practice our Rally skills twice a day for about 5 minutes each time. You can tell that he loves to earn treats and praise. Then we play “kick ball.” I kick the ball for him to catch mid-air, with a great flourish (Mick’s flourish, not mine.) Rally is an AKC sport similar to obedience but more fun for the dog – person team. We’re entered in our first competition this weekend. Anybody can attend but only the dogs and their people ever show up.

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Sandhill Cranes of New Mexico

By drjeffnichol | November 27, 2023 | Comments Off on Sandhill Cranes of New Mexico
sandhill cranes

These splendid birds arrive every fall in our beautiful state. Many folks drive to Bosque del Apache to get a glimpse but we can enjoy these almost prehistoric creatures up close at the Rio Grande Nature Center in Albuquerque’s North valley. If you listen carefully you will hear my family chatting on our Thanksgiving hike. Sorry about that. Crane-speak is more interesting.

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Learning Dog Tricks – the Light Dawns

By drjeffnichol | November 20, 2023 | Comments Off on Learning Dog Tricks – the Light Dawns
the light dawns

Mick and I have practiced his new trick, “Night, night.” He’s watching me intently because he’s ready. Even though he gets it, mostly, I help him do it right. He earns the treat at the end and gets praise and, most important, physical contact as he rolls onto his back. He wins throughout the whole event. He’ll do it faster and better with more practice. We have good fun together.

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Tag team at Kindergarten

By drjeffnichol | November 13, 2023 | Comments Off on Tag team at Kindergarten
puppy kindergarten video

Puppy kindergarten teaches healthy play during the sensitive period of socialization. Mick and his BFF (Welsh corgi) wrestle with wild abandon. A fun loving pug considers joining the fun and then says, “Ah, no. I’ll find a kinder, gentler smack down.” For all the juvenile canine fisticuffs and trash talking no one ever gets hurt. They’re all delighted to have another go next week.

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The Springs Less Traveled

By drjeffnichol | November 6, 2023 | Comments Off on The Springs Less Traveled
dripping springs

The South rim of the Grand Canyon is a wonderful 70° in early November. It’s a really dry place. We dropped 1180 feet as we hiked 3.5 miles to this splendid dripping spring. It’s a shady spot at the end of a rather arduous and sometimes narrow trail. Climbing back out is a little harder but the Grand Canyon is worth it. Start early, pack a lunch, and lug a couple of liters of water. I love this place but I had to leave my good dog Mick Jagger home this time. No dogs are allowed in National Parks. That’s…

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Circus dog? Robot dog? AI dog?

By drjeffnichol | October 30, 2023 | Comments Off on Circus dog? Robot dog? AI dog?
rally training

Mike is demonstrating Rally skills with “Bree”, his Pomeranian. At Sandia Dog Obedience Club in Albuquerque, Mike and Rene are instructors in the dog sport called Rally. It’s like obedience but more fun. My Border collie “Mick” and I like it because we’re learning to work as a team. We’re having such a good time we plan to compete. Mick wants to be just like Bree.

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