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Inquisitive Canine: Tails from the Doghouse — Meet Taffy

Confident, athletic canine is ready for a loving family

[Note: This is a continuation of columns profiling local rescue dogs. We’ve handpicked these dogs in the hopes of finding them loving homes. We encourage you to ask questions and add your own parenting tips in the comments.]

Taffy has been described as a confident, outgoing, athletic and very smart inquisitive canine. Those who have spent time with her have noticed she is also fearless, alert and observant, and could very easily entertain herself if not provided opportunities by others. Some of her favorite pastimes are chasing balls, running, walking and cuddling.

She has been a resident at Santa Barbara County Animal Services for a while, but is now more than ready to find a family to love.

Canine 411

» Name: Taffy
» Breed: American pit bull-terrier mix
» Gender: Female
» Age: 4
» Weight: 55 pounds
» Location: Santa Barbara County Animal Services

From the Dog Trainer’s Notepad

Want to make Taffy part of your family? Try these tips:

» Establish expectations: Having realistic expectations at the beginning of your relationship with Taffy will help you achieve great results later on. Consider her species-specific traits that motivate her to behave as the inquisitive canine she is.

Article Image
Taffy is an American pit bull-terrier mix.

» Know your animal: In addition to being a TLC — tender loving canine — Taffy is of adult age, and still quite lively and active. Being a responsible pet parent, and gracious entertainment director, will help provide the activities she needs to stay physically and mentally fit — as well as prevent her from inventing her own fun and games that others might find annoying.

» Figure out a behavior baseline: Establishing Taffy’s current skill set can assist in determining next steps in your training process. Her traits of being active and motivated will set her up to be the perfect learner. Once you know what Taffy can do, or still needs to learn, you can then TAP — Teach, Apply, Practice — dance your way to having a great-mannered dog.

» Reward with recognition: Our domestic dogs are no different than us in that we repeat behaviors we get rewarded for. Focus on and acknowledge Taffy when she’s doing something you want. A belly rub, a “thank you” from across the room, a toss of a toy and/or a yummy treat can all work magic in obtaining your training goals.

» Create a safe space: An enriching environment will help Taffy thrive, make better choices and prevent her from doing something you might not find useful. You’ll especially want to be on top of your home-management game while she settles into her new surroundings.

Pawsitive Mutt Match?

If you think Taffy is the gal for you, please contact Santa Barbara County Animal Services to arrange a meet and greet. Click here for contact information.

Sharing Is Caring

We’ve got a whole bowlful of training tips! We’re happy to help you achieve your own dog training goals, so click here for a free download of our Top 10 Training Tips.

Community TalkBack

We’d like to hear from dog people in our community. Fellow pet parents, dog lovers and forward thinkers, what do you recommend for Taffy and her family-to-be? Add your comments below.

— Dear Inquisitive Canine/Tails from the Doghouse is written by Joan Mayer and her trusty sidekick, Poncho. Joan is a certified professional dog trainer and human-canine relationship coach. Poncho is a 10-pound mutt that knows a lot about canine and human behavior. Their column is known for its simple common-sense approach to dog training and behavior, as well as its entertaining insight into implementing proven techniques that reward both owner and dog. Joan is also the founder of The Inquisitive Canine, where her love-of-dog training approach highlights the importance of understanding canine behavior. If you or your dog have questions about behavior, training or life with each other, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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