Four years ago I started a blog at http://www.denisefenzi.com. The purpose of that blog was to create a public space where I could share my ideas about competition dog training, and to document that training process with my own dogs. That blog currently experiences about half a million hits a year – well beyond my expectations when I started writing!
I have gone to some trouble to keep that blog focused on the topic of competition dog training. That is because competition dog training is my passion, my life, my employment, my joy! I wanted to write about it, and I look forward to maintaining that blog as it currently stands. I believe that blog has made a difference in the lives of many people and their canine partners, and that brings me a good deal of personal satisfaction.
But I have found myself troubled by aspects of the pet dog world – where the vast majority of dogs reside! When people ask me for help with their dogs, I am aware that there are thousands of excellent resources on the internet, but I am also aware that a simple search of “dog training” or “how to stop pulling on leash” or “how to teach a recall” will net results that vary in quality from exceptional to downright dangerous. And a well meaning yet ignorant pet owner is going to be hard pressed to tell them apart without the potential for making some really unfortunate mistakes along the way.
I am not a great pet dog trainer. Yes, I understand what pet people want in their companions. Yes, I know how to teach the skills that pet dogs need. Yes, I am kind and patient with pet dog owners (80% of the battle, if you ask me). Maybe most important, I really care. I really care that people develop rich relationships with their dogs, based on mutual enjoyment of the amazing relationship that can develop between people and their dogs. So what’s the problem? What else does it take to be a great trainer?
The problem is that my passion lies in training competition sport dogs. I am fascinated by the process of creating a perfect behavior for competition and then refining the training relationship to the point where that beautiful behavior will hold up under the stress of a dog show, when there is no more cookie in the pocket and the pressure from outside can be high. I am fascinated by the deep complexity of the dog sports world – where traditional training methods are losing favor and kinder and more interactive methods are rising to the front. I care deeply about creating dog sports team where BOTH members of the team are equally excited and vested about the entire process of competition, and where BOTH members of the team experience choice about whether to participate. In short – I have my hands full.
To be great at something, I believe the topic needs to own your soul, because that is how our deepest and most creative spirit thrives. In the pet world, I have found many many of these people. Brilliant minds, deep thinkers, and generous in the sharing of their knowledge. So rather than reinvent the wheel I will simply share the best with you. It’s already there!
My role in this blog will be simple – find and share excellent information that you can trust to be safe, kind and effective.
My goals are the following:
- Create an easily searchable blog that develops over time. If you type “loose leash walking” in the search engine, I want a simple plan to emerge for you. This blog will remain clean and simple.
- Emphasize video over words. I want you to be able to SEE what needs to be done, preferably with simple and clear videos that get the job done.
- Add games, lesson plans and class activities that pet trainers can use to keep their classes interesting and fun for their participants.
- Include essays which communicate my own values and beliefs about what it means to develop a relationship with a dog. That IS my passion – and I will share those blogs anywhere and everywhere. In my mind, people who understand the value of relationship are extremely likely to make good choices for their dogs.
If I am successful, then in a few months I’d like to believe that this will be a thriving resource for both pet trainers and committed pet owners alike.
Well. I think that is what I will do. Sometimes change happens, and I won’t stop it. Regardless, let’s find out.
If you want to know “who I am”, take a look at the introductory post I wrote when I started my first blog. You can find that blog here: Welcome!
I’m excited! A new road is about to open up, and I can’t quite see around that first corner. Where might it lead? I hope you’ll join me as I explore a new path!