Learning to “Speak Dog”: A Canine Behavior Series

Posted on May 17, 2012
Learning to “Speak Dog”: A Canine Behavior Series

from the Photo Lab

Read others in this series: Introduction  |  Part 1  |  Part 2  |  Part 3  |  Part 4  |  Part 5

You love dogs. You probably grew up with them, or maybe you are now sharing a home with your first dog ever. Perhaps you work with dogs in some way, through dog walking, house sitting, volunteering at a shelter or maybe you are a fellow pet photographer… Regardless, if you are reading this, chances are, you love dogs. But… do you understand them? Can you speak their sometimes subtle language or have you ever been puzzled by some of the things they do, and ways they act?

Dogs have been by our side for millions of years, closer to our species and more attuned to our world than primates even! But the truth is, there is still a lot to learn about (and from) man’s (and woman’s) best friend.
My love and interest for dogs is, to put it mildly; obsessive… but in the good way that makes you curious and thirsty for knowledge, not in the creepy hoarder way. I devour books about dogs and canine behavior, history, nutrition, training and art. I grew up with many dogs by my side, craved their company more than people’s and by the time I was 8, I knew every dog breed by name from an encyclopedia of dogs my parents gave me. I grew up, but never out of love for dogs, and now I am fortunate to have a career built around them (companion animals in general). I work with dogs every day, and recently, I have started doing volunteer work in the behavior and training department for the Sonoma Humane Society after graduating from Trish King’s Courses in Canine Behavior (formerly known as the Canine Behavior Academy).

I am certain, that the key to a successful relationship of any kind is communication, trust and understanding. This is no different for dogs. Learning the ins and outs of canine behavior, in other words, learning to “Speak Dog” will be tremendously beneficial not only to you as a dog guardian, or working professional, but also for dogs everywhere.
This proved true to me and I have been looking for a way to share some helpful tips, tricks and techniques, books worth reading and documentaries worth watching with my fellow dog lovers/professionals with special attention dedicated to fellow pet photographers; which is why I created this series of blog posts!

It is my hope that through this series, you’ll find ways to connect on a deeper level with your own dogs, or the dogs you work with, and that it be beneficial to you personal and professional life as well as that of the dog’s whose lives you touch.

The first part of the series Why You Should Care About Canine Behavior will be coming on Wednesday, May 23. I hope you’ll tune in and share your thoughts and experiences with your pups.
If there are any specific questions on dog behavior that you’d like me to touch on, please share them! If I don’t know the answers, I will be happy to research them and share my findings with you.


  1. Joni Solis
    May 18, 2012

    When I clicked the Like button I received this error : “The page failed to provide a valid list of administrators. It needs to specify the administrators using either a “fb:app_id” meta tag, or using a “fb:admins” meta tag to specify a comma-delimited list of Facebook users.”


  2. Alessina Brooks
    May 23, 2012

    I train people to listen to their dogs and welcome the opportunity to learn more from you.