School For The Dogs Podcast - Dog Training & Animal Behavior with Annie Grossman  show

School For The Dogs Podcast - Dog Training & Animal Behavior with Annie Grossman

Summary: Annie Grossman of the NYC-based dog training center School For The Dogs answers training questions, confronts myths, geeks out on animal behavior, discusses pet trends and interviews industry experts. Annie encourages people to become literate in the basics of behavioral science in order to help their dogs and themselves. Tune in to learn how to use science-based methods to train dogs (and people) without pain, force, or coercion! Show notes: Have a dog or puppy training question? Visit or leave a voicemail at 917-414-2625 Support this podcast:

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 Bonus: Training wisdom from page 9 of Dr. Bob Bailey's website (Plus: Join Annie for a film screening and Q and A with Dr. Bailey on April 24th) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 802

Bonus episode! Annie reads some casually-written but oh-so-important training tips from the website belonging to Dr. Bob Bailey, Annie will be showing Dr. Bailey's film on the history of his company, Animal Behavior Enterprises, and the history of operant conditioning, and then hosting a conversation with Dr. Bailey, on April 24th at 4PM Eastern. Sign up at  Dr. Bob Bailey is an animal trainer, inventor, designer, writer, teacher, diver, and photographer. He is the widower of B.F. Skinner's graduate student, Dr. Marian Breland Bailey. All proceeds from the screening will go to the Marian Breland Bailey Memorial Fund at Arkansas' Henderson State University.  About the Baileys Page 9 More about Patient Like The Chipmunks Dr. Sophia Yin's video about Chicken Camp with Dr. Bob Bailey from 2000 --- Partial Transcript: Annie: Bob Bailey, or I should say Dr. Bob Bailey, is a trainer who lives in Arkansas, and I’m kind of obsessed with him. He was both business partner and husband to Marian Breland Bailey, also Dr. Marian Breland Bailey, who together with her first husband, Keller Breland and Bob Bailey who came to work with them before Keller’s untimely death in the early 1960s, the three of them built this company called Animal Behavior Enterprises, which did so many really unique things in the realm of animal training. They train animals mostly for commercial purposes to do things that we’re pretty incredible. One thing they did was create these kind of like, I guess maybe you call it like a diorama with moving parts in it for animals. And they train like over a hundred different species of animals, but like an animal in this Lucite, basically Skinner box, they would train these animals to do all kinds of crazy funny tricks, like play basketball, play baseball, dance, play tic-tac-toe. And I actually, and then they would ship these all around the world, and I actually grew up at, the arcade that I used to go to as a kid in Manhattan had a dancing chicken and a tic-tac-toe playing chicken that I was pretty obsessed with. Actually my whole family, we all loved the tic-tac-toe chicken and would discuss the tic-tac-toe chicken.  Never in my childhood did I think about where this chicken came from and whether the chicken was actually trained or how it was trained totally did not cross my mind. I guess if I thought about it, I would have thought the dancing chicken was like being electrocuted and that’s why it was jumping or something, although I was completely off base. Anyway, these amusements were part of what Animal Behavior Enterprises did among other things, which included training animals for the military, training animals for film. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Why you should teach your dog to use your iPhone (seriously): SFTD's Dog Training in 21 Days' Day 2 Challenge, explained | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1639

Touchscreen devices can be used to teach a nose touch, which is a basic, building-block behavior that School For The Dogs' trainers teach almost every dog they work with. A nose touch can be taught with a person's hands and a dog's nose; the person clicks when the dog's nose touches the screen, and then the dog receives a reward. Using a touchscreen device and one of a handful of apps, you can take the clicker out of the equation and your dog's nose will register a sound when it makes contact with the screen, essentially doing the job of any good marker signal.  Annie discusses the origins of her use of touchscreens with dogs and talks about some of the more advanced work that can be done with screens, such as teaching a dog to read, teaching cue differentiation, and more. Episode on teaching touch: More on using touch screens: Dogs Take Selfies Too - Teaching Dogs to Use iPads in London - Teaching Pets to Use iPads in NYC - The First App Made Specifically for Canines - Three Apps Your Dog Can Use to Make Art - Apps mentioned:  Doodle Buddy - App for Dog - Yes No App - --- Partial Transcript: [Intro and music] Annie: A few years ago, back when Kate and I were running School for the Dogs out of my living room, in 2013 I got a spate of prank phone calls. They might’ve all been from the same person. I don’t know. One was someone asking me if I could help them teach their dog to navigate the worldwide web, because right now he only knew how to do one thing online and it was to watch porn. Another caller asked if I could teach the dog to use the remote control. That one I actually, I thought was legit for, for half a second. I said, I guess I could teach a dog to use a TV remote, but why would you need to do that? And he said, well, I’d like it if he could change the channel when I’m masturbating. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Bonus: Quick thought about cues and commands as they relate offers and bills | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 349

Good Dog Trainers will refer to giving a "cue" vs giving a dog a "command." A cue implies an opportunity; a command implies a threat. It just occurred to Annie that it's sort of like the difference between getting a special offer you can take advantage of and getting a bill you have to pay: Both result in the behavior of you spending money, but in one case you're engaging in that behavior because of positive reinforcement, and in the other, negative reinforcement. This may be a useful way to help the uninitiated understand the difference between cues and commands. --- Partial Transcript: Annie: I was just answering a question from someone. It’s actually for a presentation I’m putting together and Bailey who I work with doing Petcademy, which offers online training to people who are adopting and fostering dogs from a number of shelters throughout the country. Anyway Bailey and I are doing a presentation for a company about Petcademy. And there was a question in the deck about understanding a cue versus understanding a command. And I just thought of a good analogy that I wanted to share. So, we as good dog trainers tend to use the word cue instead of the word command when we’re referring to telling a dog what something is called. If I am teaching my dog to sit, when I say, sit, then sit is the cue.  If I am teaching a dog to sit at the curb on the street, then the curb is the cue. And really there are cues all around us all the time, all around dogs all the time, indicating that it would be a good idea if you do X, Y, or Z. So cues are not just something that come from us human beings. But traditionally in dog training over the decades, the word command has been used.  When I first started at Karen Pryor Academy in 2010, I remember answering homework questions with referring to giving a command to a dog and was corrected that it was a cue. And I thought, I think at first I thought like, Oh, well, I guess it’s about being nice. Like, I kind of reduced it down to that.  Cue sounds nicer. But really a cue and a command are different things, because one is encouraging a behavior by saying, Hey, you, should you choose to engage in this behavior, something good is going to happen. Which is, you know, positive reinforcement, positively reinforcing behavior, adding something to the equation in order to encourage the behavior. And a command is saying, do this or else, negative reinforcement. If you don’t engage in this behavior, I’m going to take something away from you. Something bad is going to happen in the form of something desirable being taken away. And I was thinking, you know what it’s like, is like the difference between an offer and the bill. If you see a special offer for something, a sale for something you’re looking for, a deal, an ad that that results in you spending money, kind of like you responded to a cue.  You didn’t have to take the offer. You chose to take the offer. The result is that you spent money. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Bonus: A brief history of modern dog training (audio of lecture from the SFTD Professional Course) | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 2470

Warning: If you're not a very nerdy aspiring dog trainer or a science geek when it comes to the history of the study animal behavior, this episode might not be for you! You've been warned. Annie talks about the evolution of dog training, starting with hypotheses about the domestication of dogs, the rise of the "pet" dog in the late 1800s, covering the work of Pavlov and Watson in the early 1900s, the birth of clicker training in Skinner's lab in the middle of the century, up through the rise of dominance-based trainers on TV in the late 20th and early 21st centuries.  This is the audio from a lecture Annie put together for the School For The Dogs Professional Course. School For The Dogs has been training up dog trainers for four years, and is in the process of putting much of this curriculum online for aspiring dog trainers. If you're interested in learning more about the SFTD Professional Course and would like to be notified when it launches, email  --- Partial Transcript: Annie: So this is a bonus episode that is really for listeners who are super nerdy about dog training. You’ve been warned if you end up finding it’s boring, you might not be nerdy enough. I recorded this for our professional course which we have been building out and really putting the finishing touches on.  We’ve had a professional course for a few years, but we’ve been working on putting the majority of it online with both on demand and live interactive parts. If you’re interested in learning more and being notified as soon as it officially launches, just email me, and I will give you more info. But yeah, so this is the audio of this lecture. There is a PowerPoint and video, too, which obviously you’re not going to experience because this is a podcast.  But I thought I put it up here, because when I first got interested in dog training, I really didn’t have any context for any of it. So I put this presentation together to try and give some context, and answer the question where did, for instance, where did clicker training come from? And why isn’t it more widely used, and was it just recently invented et cetera, et cetera. So, hope that if you are an aspiring dog trainer or are just a geek about this kind of stuff as I am, I hope you will get something out of this. All right, here you go. Oh, and by the way, if I sound like I’m talking a little bit slowly or whatever, it’s because I’m going through slides while I’m talking. So that is that is my full disclaimer. Now go forth and listen. This lecture is going to be a brief history of dog training. This is not meant to be a comprehensive history, but rather something that touches on both the last century-ish of dog training and with an attempt to put it into the larger context of dogs in the human world over time. Did humans really domesticate dogs?  We tend to have this assumption in our culture that domestication is something that we did to dogs. Actually, the more likely scenario is probably one of co-evolution, with natural selection favoring dogs who could exist in the human realm, favoring dogs who were less fearful of humans and more likely to engage in behaviors that human liked.  Or have performed some kind of job for humans. The most basic job probably being eating a family’s scraps, which would reduce the amount of disease carrying vermin. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Join the Dog Training in 21 Days Challenge! Meet student leader Leeyah Wiseman | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 2173

On April 1 we are starting the Dog Training in 21 Days Challenge (#DT21DAYS). We’re using the hashtag on Instagram but if you don’t have IG, you can still participate!  Each day there will be a simple challenge for you to complete. They are outlined below and we will be posting about them each day on Instagram as well as sharing what we are doing for it on Instagram Stories. Please join, get your dog excited about learning and flex those dog training muscles! To participate: Post a video or image everyday for 21 days showing your participation.  Tag us and use #DT21DAYS so we can see. For anyone who wants to participate outside of social media, you can visit the link in bio, click Dog Training in 21 Days  ( and checkout with code DT21DAYS. The code will make it completely free. Note: It’s okay to miss a day(s), just jump back in when you can. Today's episode is an interview with Leeyah Wiseman, who will be demonstrating each day on our Instagram. You can also follow Leeyah on Instagram at @georgeandleeyah The Daily Challenges: WHAT’S YOUR DOGS $100 BILL? TEACH YOUR DOG TO DRAW CAPTURE 50 AWESOME THINGS TEACH A NOSE LICK TEACH LOOK (PART 1 OF 2) TEACH LOOK (PART 2 OF 2) TEACH SIT WITH A SNAP BOUNCE YOUR DOG BETWEEN 2 SPOTS TEACH A HAND TOUCH TEACH DOWN TRAIN FIND IT THE ELEVATOR GAME THE STAY GAME TEACH “DROP IT” MUZZLE TRAINING RELAXATION PROTOCOL TEACH STAND TEACH YOUR DOG WHERE TO WALK TOUCHING AN OBJECT THE PAW TOUCH SHAPING TO PAPER If you are sharing on Instagram, be sure to tag us and use the hashtag: #DT21DAYS If you’d like access to all 21 lessons, detailed steps and additional resources visit our on-demand portal - head to the link in our IG bio, click Dog Training in 21 Days and checkout with code DT21. The code will make it completely free. Good luck! --- Partial Transcript: [Intro and music] Annie: Hello listeners. Thank you for being here. I am interviewing today, Leah Wiseman, who is, we’re trying to figure out exactly what to call her, but for the moment I’m going to call her our student leader of our upcoming 21 day challenge. Leah, Hey, thanks for being here. Leah Wiseman: Hey, thanks so much for having me today. I’m so excited to chat about our challenge. Annie: I know, me too. So I wanted to have Leah on both to talk about the challenge and we can go through some of the specifics, but also just wanting to kind of hear about Leah’s journey into dog training. She has been a podcast listener, I know, since she got her puppy.  Since you got your puppy, I don’t know if I should be, am I speaking to you or like the greater people? Leah: Right? It’s kind of surreal to be talking to you live when it’s I’m so used to like hearing your voice. Full transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Dog Training Q and A! 3/25/2021: Training a "Velcro puppy" to be more confident and independent in order to prevent separation anxiety in the future | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1339

This is a bonus episode: A recording of a live Q and A. Join Annie Grossman for a live Q and A most Thursdays on Instagram @schoolforthedogs. Get alerted about the next one or ask a question in advance at She also sometimes goes live to answer questions on Clubhouse. Find her there: @anniegrossman. Today, Annie spoke to the human belonging to Penny (@heytherepenny on Instagram) about how to help young Penny feel more comfortable alone and how to start to prevent separation anxiety before it begins. Annie gives lots of tips on crate training, talks about how to create crate "FOMO," use the Treat and Train, and more.  Join us on Instagram in April for our Day 1 of our Dog Training in 21 Days Challenge! --- Partial Transcript: Annie: Hi, is this Penny? Angela: Yes, this is Penny. Annie: And tell me your name. Angela: My name is Angela. Annie: Hey Angela. I’m recording this for School for the Dogs podcast. Is that okay? Angela: Yes. Annie: And where are you guys based? Are you in New York City? Angela: Yeah, so we are, we actually did sign up for a course at School for the Dogs, which starts in April. Annie: Oh, great. Which course are you doing with us? Angela: We’re doing Calm canine. Annie: Oh, great. Excellent. Angela: Just cause Penny, she’s really excited whenever she goes outside. So we’re hoping that’ll help. Annie: Is she a golden doodle? Angela: She’s a cavapoo. Annie: Okay. And how old is she? Angela: She’s six months old now. Annie: Oh, she’s a little, just a tiny pup. Okay. Well tell me what’s going on with Penny. Angela: Well, so she basically follows us everywhere in the home. So like if she’s on the couch and we get up to go somewhere, she will, even if she’s asleep, she will wake up, hop down and follow us to wherever we are. My only concern right now, my boyfriend works from home, so she’s around somebody all day, but my concern is just like, when things go back to normal, he goes back to work. Just because she’s so used to following us, seeing us everywhere, if this becomes an issue for separation. Annie: Yeah. Well, I think you’re right to be thinking about that in advance. Have you tried leaving her alone? Have you tried leaving her with anyone else? What happens when you do that? Angela: So she we’ve done little intervals, like maybe five, 10 minutes or something, but just like we’re in another room. So we’re still, you know, she’ll be in the living room and we’ll just go to another room and kind of watch her on the camera. She again tries to follow us. So for the five, 10 minutes, she will eventually, after a couple minutes of scratching at the door, will go and kind of like sit on the couch. But the longest that we’ve left her is probably like 10 minutes or so. Annie: And she cries during those 10 minutes? Full transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Bonus: One positive-reinforcement dog trainer's point of view on guns in America | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1027

Annie reads a satirical essay she wrote, approaching the gun control debate from the point of view of a dog trainer. With dogs, we can create antecedent arrangements to control the environment in order to keep dogs from eating our shoes. If only it were so easy. If only it were so easy keep people from shooting each other... A FAREWELL TO FOOTWEAR: A DOG TRAINER WEIGHS IN ON THE SHOE CONTROL DEBATE by Annie Grossman  As an animal trainer by profession, I am specifically interested in shoes that get into the hands, or, rather in the mouths, of dogs. From what I witness in the homes of my clients, the deleterious use of shoes by dogs is a problem with no easy solution. Almost daily, I hear of incidents relating to shoe carnage: people coming home to find their Uggs in pieces all over the living room floor; midnight vet runs spurred by decimated Nikes causing intestinal blockage; children arriving at school late and in tears because the goldendoodle has absconded with a sandal. The problem goes beyond mere inconvenience: At any shelter, you can find dogs who face euthanasia because of sins relating to their insatiable appetite for footwear, and vets around the country will attest to the damage (sometimes irreversible and even fatal) that dogs cause themselves because of their obsession with our shoes. After every incident, be it a small-time heel nibble or a full on closet rampage, there is one question that I hear over and over again: Why did he do it? Motive is a major cause of conversation around these issues. So many dog owners will say that shoe misuse stems from deep-seated puppyhood issues, profound mental disturbance, or a need for dominance. Some say dogs are prone to these kinds of disruptive behaviors because of spite, or inferiority complexes. But, as a trainer, I like to remind people that we cannot read dog minds. We can make a lot of guesses, but they’ll only ever be guesses. Did he do it because of issues with his absentee father? Was he trying to prove himself to the bitch next door? Maybe. And we could spend a lot of time trying to establish motives rooted in those kinds of storylines. But, the fact is, if a dog eats your shoe, it’s because there was a shoe available to eat.... Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 The queen of lickable treats: Meet Brandi Barker, creator of the Bark Pouch | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1473

School For The Dogs' trainers and clients love treats that dogs can lick straight from a container. One woman has cornered this market, and we're so glad. Her name is Brandi Barker. She started out training dog, but now is the fulltime force behind Bark Pouches, which are little squirt bottles filled with shelf-stable deliciousness. She and Annie talk about how she entered the world of dog training, how she came up with her product, and more.  Get Bark Pouches at or at --- Partial Transcript: [Intro and music] Annie: Hello folks. Thank you for being here. I am here with Brandi Barker, who has the world’s best last name if you’re into dogs [laughs]. And Brandi who is joining us from Chicago? I believe. Brandi: I actually moved to Columbus, Ohio. Annie: Oh, okay. From Columbus, Ohio. Why don’t you tell us about your amazing product and then we can go from there. Brandi: Okay. Sounds good. So it’s called Bark Pouch, and it’s dog treats in a pouch. Everything is human grade. And I try  to keep the ingredients really minimal and I have multiple sizes. I have multiple — Annie: Sorry to interrupt you, but explain it. Let’s explain what a pouch is because it has different meanings. Brandi: Okay. Okay. So you want me to start over then? Annie: No, no, no, just go ahead. Brandi: Okay. So it’s it’s dog treats in a pouch. So if you’ve ever seen the applesauce pouches, or the yogurt pouches that kids eat from, it’s basically like a paste type consistency that you just hold down for your dog and squeeze a tiny bit. They lick straight from the pouch. So it’s, I really design them for walking and training just to make that process easier for people. Annie: What’s funny is I have a toddler. And she eats now from these kinds of pouches all the time, but I feel like my first exposure to this kind of pouch was through Bark Pouch. And then I was like, Oh, wait, they make these for children too. And actually some of the ones that they make for children, I think you can also use for dogs. But yeah, so we’ve been carrying your product for several years now, and they are so genius because they’re lickable.  And as trainers we are very into treats that can be licked straight from the container for so many reasons. One reason that I think that people might not think about is when you’re working with dogs all the time, as so many of us are, your hands get really gross and your pockets get really gross. So having something that can simply be given straight from the container into a dog’s mouth is great. Love using it for especially outside, love using it for stuff like muzzle training. So many reasons. And recently we have been selling so many more Bark Pouches before because they used to have to be stored frozen, and then put in the refrigerator after use, but by some magic of production, they are now shelf stable as of a few months ago. And so we’ve been shipping them all over the country. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Dog Training Q and A! 3/18/2021: Keeping a dog off furniture, toys you can leave in the crate, using physical pressure during leash walks and more | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 2042

This is a bonus episode: A recording of a live Q and A. Join Annie Grossman for a live Q and A most Thursdays on Instagram @schoolforthedogs. Get alerted about the next one or ask a question in advance at She also sometimes goes live to answer questions on Clubhouse. Find her there: @anniegrossman.  Join her on Clubhouse tomorrow 3/19 at 12PM ET to give your answer to the question: What is a good dog? Need a Clubhouse invite? Text 917-414-2625. Today, Annie answered the following questions:  -Is it considered "positive punishment" if you use body pressure to encourage walking (from @vagabondpaws)  -What is the best way to keep your puppy off of furniture? Saying "No" or "Off"? (from @eleniannm) -How do you get a 12-week-old puppy to potty outside (from @eastvillageenzo) -How do you get a puppy to eat her kibble if she only wants to eat treats and people food? (from @heytherepenny)  -What are good toys to leave in the crate (from @303lauren)  -How can you best train yourself before getting a dog? (from @alinalauranarvaez)  -What should you do when a puppy cries overnight, besides taking him out to potty? (from @luvmesumkatie)  Mentioned in this episode: SFTD's on demand courses course available at SFTD's house training guide: SFTD's puppy nipping guide:  Products:  The Groov by Diggs The Toppl Yak Chews: Bully Grip Other episodes mentioned:  A Pet Food Killed My Dog (Interview with Sue Thixton of A Modern Dog Owners Guide To Nipping A Modern Dog Owners Guide To House Training In Defense of Negative Punishment --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Bonus: Annie reads aloud Walden Two Revisited, the 1976 preface to BF Skinner's novel Walden Two | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1911

This is a bonus episode in which Annie reads aloud the preface to Walden Two, BF Skinner's 1948 novel about a utopian community that he imagines could be closely engineered based on what we know about behavioral science, and cooperatively governed based on principles rooted in positive reinforcement. The book was called "fascism without tears" when it was published and also compared to a plan for a dog obedience school for humans. Three decades after writing it, Skinner wrote Walden Two Revisited, which reflected on how society still hadn't done enough to harness the power of non-coercive, non-punitive control in order to better people's lives. Forty-five years hence, has anything really changed? Maybe dog training can help us better understand what Skinner had in mind... Notes:  Clubhouse Reading Group on Walden Two: 4/1 at 3PM ET. Need a Clubhouse Invite? Text 917-414-2625 Annie imitates a dial up modem: Buy Walden Two: 3 minute summary of Walden Two, by the Prosocial Progress Foundation  --- Partial Transcript: Annie: This is a bonus episode. Woo woo woo wee aw wee aw wee aw!  That’s my bonus episode cheer. It happens to also sound a lot like a car alarm. I also do impressions of dial up modems, true story.  Look in show notes. Anyway, I have decided to give myself permission as this podcast’s editor and producer to do the occasional episode that is really only tangentially related to dog training. It’s not specifically related to solving dog training problems, but that touches in my mind on dog training in a larger context.  And that these episodes may sometimes simply be me reading things that I have found thought-provoking in this arena. Last week, I read the 1913 essay, um by John B. Watson psychology as the behaviorist views it.  Which kind of pits the then just burgeoning world of behavioral psychology, behavior analysis, against cognitive psychology kind of as if it were pitting science or a theory of evolution against creationism.  And today I read it and see a lot of similarities between the world of science based, positive reinforcement rooted dog training, and the world of dog training that has to do with myth and energy and misunderstood concepts like dominance. Today I wanted to read the 1976 forward written by BF Skinner for his 1948 novel, Walden Two.  Which I first read about 10 years ago. And it really, it really affected me. It was sort of the first time that I realized that I had, I had just graduated KPA at that point that I had kind of learned how to use this technology of this field of sciences, field of behavioral science to train dogs.  But really the same basic bits and pieces could be used to do things way outside of helping people get their dogs to not pee and poop in the house. And actually, Walden Two, which is, it’s not a book to be read because it’s like fine writing. It’s a book written by a scientist to communicate ideas. And when it came out it was, it was likened to the idea of creating a dog obedience school for humans.  And was also called fascism without tears. And it, I mean, I guess there is fascism in his suggestions for how a utopia could be, but also communism, and also a kind of socio libertarianism. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Air B and...Pee? Sniff Spot allows dog owners to rent people's yards! Genius! | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1599

When David Adams' girlfriend traveled with her dog, she had an issue: The dog only liked to pee in yards. Adams, who had previously build a site for people looking for short-term apartment rentals, had an idea: What if there where people could rent... yards? So, he built, which allows people to rent out their fenced-in outdoor spaces to dogs, hourly. Annie and David discuss how this innovative service may revolutionize the way dogs are able to exercise and socialize.  Learn more at  Like this episode! Please leave a review on iTunes! Support School For The Dogs by shopping at  Download our new app to join the conversation at  Special thanks to Bill and Lizzie of Toast Garden for creating our Season Three intro song! Find them on --- Partial Transcript: Annie: All right, David. Thanks for being here. Why don’t you just go ahead and tell me about yourself and your really interesting business. David Adams: Yeah, yeah, definitely. Thanks for having me. So Sniff Spot, maybe I’ll start by telling you how it came about and I can talk about it a little bit. Annie: And if you don’t mind, tell me your full name and where you’re based. David: Yes. So my full name is David Adams and I’m currently living in Boston. Annie: Okay. And Sniff Spot.  Is Sniff Spot your baby? David: Yes. Yes. One of them, one of them. Annie: Oh, okay. Well, are there other babies that we’re going to need to know about? David: There are other babies, there are two fur babies named Soba and Toshi, and they came before Sniff Spot and they actually inspired Sniff Spot. Annie: So what is Sniff Spot for those who don’t know? David: Yeah. So Sniff Spot is Airbnb for dog parks. The idea is that anyone can offer their land or their yard as a safe and private space for dogs to play. And people that have dogs can book hourly for private time with their dogs, for exercise, training, whatever they want. Annie: That’s such an interesting idea. So when did you first come up with this idea and tell me about its evolution David: Yeah, so I was living in Seattle at the time. And I had just met this wonderful woman who is now my wife and I had my dog Soba and she had her dog Toshi.  And I was going around to dog parks with Soba. I was a first time dog owner and just kept having bad experiences. Soba is high energy, she’s a lab pit mix. And I needed to exercise her, but dog parks, you know, there were dogs there she didn’t get along with. They felt dirty and not hygienic. So I was feeling dissatisfied. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Dog Training Q and A! 3/11/2021:Bringing a fearful puppy onto the city streets and/or to the dog park | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1371

This is a bonus episode: A recording of a live Q and A. Join Annie Grossman for a live Q and A most Thursdays on Instagram @schoolforthedogs. Get alerted about the next one or ask a question in advance at She also sometimes goes live to answer questions on Clubhouse. Find her there: @anniegrossman. Here, Annie talks to an SFTD client who has a young rescue dog who became frightened about going outside after some bad experiences on walks. The owner has been bringing the dog to off-leash time at School For The Dogs in NYC and wants Annie's thoughts on bringing him to the dog park. Mentioned in this episode:  Dog Body Language course available at Lili Chin's book Doggie Language Sue Sternberg's dog park app  Learn more about off-leash offerings at School For The Dogs at Dogs under 5 months: Dogs over 5 months: --- Partial Transcript: Annie: So Katie with her dachshund mix. Katie wrote: I got three-ish months old Sunny on January 13th and he has settled in swimmingly. He’s happy go lucky, playful, but overall, very calm and observant. One standout example. When a stranger came in the house briefly, he all blinked at him. He only barks in the mornings to get out of his crate. He’s crate trained and he sleeps for around eight hours every night. The issue: he was with foster mom on a farm before coming to be in Brooklyn and was increasingly skittish on our initial walks to the park. Note, he was on pain meds from his neutering at first.  As days oere on and pain meds wore off this continued. So I started picking him up and walking him to the park. Eventually he didn’t want to go outside at all. We had a couple of unfortunate incidents that may have sped up the snowballing, including spooky home alone, where the passers-by, and one Pitbull that got a little too close sending Sunny between my boots and then yelping like a car alarm. I tried using treats, but after day five of growing anxiety, frankly, on both of our parts, I stuck to a pee pad in our backyard and we’ve since had great success with him going on command on the pads, both inside and outside. My question, how soon is too soon to hit the sidewalk and or the park? He’s had two rounds of vaccinations and we’re going to puppy socialization class at School for the Dogs on Monday. But again, she wrote this like a month ago and she just wrote me a little bit of an update. Let me see if I can find it, but I did also invite her to come on to chat here.  So earlier today she wrote... Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Bonus: Annie reads aloud John B. Watson's 1913 essay "Psychology As The Behaviorist Views it" | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 3605

Professor John B. Watson's 1913 essay argues that psychology should be studied from a behavioral perspective, echoes some of the same conversations that are had today between dog trainers who are approach dog training as a science and those who approach dog training by making assumptions about dogs' internal feelings and motivations.  Read "Psychology As The Behaviorist Views it" in full at Thoughts on this? Join the conversation by downloading the School For The Dogs Community app find it in iTunes: find it in the Play store: --- Transcript: [Intro] Annie: Happy Monday morning humans. I am going to take advantage of this quiet moment in my home.  Quiet because my daughter’s wonderful babysitter has brought her to the playground.  To share with you an essay I just looked up that I actually have not read in several years, but I remember it left quite an impression on me when I did read it. It’s from Psychological Review from 1913 by John B. Watson. I looked this up because I am working on some of the lectures that are going with our online professional course, which, I’m just finishing up these lectures. And I did a lecture on the history of dog training, and the history of dog training and both in universities and in pop culture, I guess is the best way to describe what the lecture is. And I mentioned Skinner and said something about how Skinner was influenced by the work of Ivan Pavlov and John B. Watson. Both of whom were mostly working in the very early 1900s. And I kind of just started looking up stuff about John B. Watson. Again, I got on kind of a Watson kick a few years ago. I read part of his biography, which I’d actually like to look at again. I think Watson has probably due his own episode at some point, and is widely considered the OG daddy of the field of behavioral science as I understand it. Briefly put, he was a psychology professor, I think at Johns Hopkins.  His most famous experiment was most likely the baby Albert experiment, where he showed you could condition a child to be scared of all things fuzzy, like rabbits and that kind of thing, by pairing similar fuzzy furry things with a loud scary noise.  It’s pretty cruel and weird considering his research subject was a non-verbal 18 month old boy named little Albert.  But still interesting as it certainly relates to so much dog training where we see dogs become conditioned to fear seemingly random things. And he ended up leaving academics, I think because of some sort of affair he had with a student.  And he ended up at the famous ad agency, J Walter Thompson, where he used what he had studied and learned about human behavior in order to manipulate humans into buying things. He is credited with having popularized the idea of a coffee break, giving people a built-in reason in their day to stop and go drink and buy coffee. So if you are a big coffee drinker, as I am, you might just have John B. Watson to thank for your very stained teeth. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 In Defense of Negative Punishment: Teaching dogs patience at mealtime, stopping thumb sucking & more | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1070

Is all punishment necessarily bad? Nope! There are two kinds of punishment, and one of them is actually frequently used by so called "positive reinforcement" trainers like Annie: Negative Punishment. Here Annie breaks down what Negative Punishment is, talks about how it interplays with positive reinforcement, and explains its role in the "Elevator Game," which is a great exercise you can to do at mealtimes in order to teach a dog to not bum-rush the food bowl. She also reads from Behavior Principles In Every Day Life by John D. Baldwin and Janice I. Baldwin, which talks about a study in which parents used negative punishment at story time in order to discourage children from sucking their thumbs.  Behavior Principles In Every Day Life by John D. Baldwin and Janice I. Baldwin, Eileen Anderson on Extinction Other episodes and blog posts on this topic:  Episode 65: Don't let your dog cry it out: On training dogs to be alone Episode 47: A busy person's guide to operant conditioning The Big Bang Theory explains Operant and Classical Conditioning Dog Training Lessons Learned From Watching Girls --- Partial Transcript: [Intro and music] Annie: So a few years ago near where I live in Manhattan, I saw a woman walking a dog with a shock collar, like a really big shock collar, bright, I think it was like bright yellow. And she had the remote very conspicuously in her hand. And maybe I shouldn’t have done this, but I posted a photo of it, I think an Instagram stories of her with her dog and a shock collar.  Like from the back, you couldn’t really tell who she was or who the dog was. Again, maybe I shouldn’t have done this, but turns out she was a client of another dog trainer that has a studio, not that far from a school for the dogs in Manhattan. And I ended up taking the photo down but not before there was some back and forth in comments if I remember correctly on this photo. Maybe it wasn’t in stories, maybe it was in the feed. Anyway, there were comments, kind of along the lines of how we as quote unquote positive reinforcement trainers don’t understand the importance of using all four quadrants of operant conditioning, and that — although I think this trainer referred to them as corners — that we, we really can’t be good dog trainers unless we understand and use all four corners, AKA quadrants. So operant conditioning, is the process of learning by consequence. If you do something, there is a consequence and the consequence can either be punishing or reinforcing. The consequence can be involving adding something or subtracting something. And if you’re adding something, we call it positive. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:

 Dog Training Q and A! 3/4/2021: How SFTD hires trainers, dealing with a suddenly fearful dog + teaching a recall without treats | File Type: audio/x-m4a | Duration: 1201

This is a bonus episode: A recording of a live Q and A. Join Annie Grossman for a live Q and A most Thursdays on Instagram @schoolforthedogs. Get alerted about the next one or ask a question in advance at She also sometimes goes live to answer questions on Clubhouse. Find her there: @anniegrossman.  Here, Annie answers three questions:  @gussiethehussie asks: "How do you vet the trainers you hire? What sort of continuing ed do they get?" @artielepup asks: "Why is my dog suddenly so reactive"  @roxyriddler asks: "My pup is no longer interested in recall unless she sees a treat! Help!" Mentioned in this episode: School For The Dogs' Professional Courses Association For Professional Dog Trainers  Certification Council For Professional Dog Trainers  Tawzer  Clicker Expo --- Partial Transcript: Annie: Hi.  This is a bonus Q and A episode. I try and go live every Thursday afternoon on the School for the Dog's Instagram account, which is simply @SchoolfortheDogs. If you would like to ask a question in advance or be notified when I am going to go live, you can go to I also periodically answer questions on Clubhouse. You can find me there @AnnieGrossman. GussietheHussie says: how do you get the trainers you hire? What sort of continued education do they get? Very good questions. So, a few years ago, we started our professional program training people up to become professional dog trainers. And I think that's Sophie. Hey, Sophie.  And part of the reason we did that was because we had trouble finding trainers that we felt like we wanted to work with.  It's really hard to find good dog trainers out there. And I'm happy to share some tips on how to find some good dog trainers. But before I do, I should plug that we are putting our professional program largely online. And what's extra exciting about that is a lot of the content is actually totally free because we want there to be more educated good dog trainers out there.  We wanted to take away as many of the barriers as possible. So we are just on the brink of launching the full suite of courses, but the first two first two are up and you can get them The completely free open-source one which contains most of our professional course online content written content is called Born to Behave. You can find it there, you can sign up there. And there's like a tier one professional course which is the same content as Born to Behave. But you do get a certificate at the end, if you do all the parts and do the quizzes. Full Transcript available at --- Send in a voice message: Support this podcast:


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