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Looking for Suggestions?

We’ve got you covered with our local veterinarians, gear and our favorite books on a variety of dog training subjects below.

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These are just a few of the Local veterinarians we are in regular communication with, and who we have worked with to provide ‘happy visits’** in the past.

Shelbyville Road Veterinary Clinic


Mount Washington Animal Clinic

(502) 955-6822

Seneca Animal Hospital


If you are a interested in becoming a veterinary or grooming partner and you would like to have Kathleen come to do a presentation for your staff on body language, training, cooperative husbandry or any other topics we will schedule “Lunch & Learn” presentations. Please email

**Happy Visits are generally visits to your veterinarian where the staff take time to specifically work to make a pet’s experience a pleasant instead of a stressful one.

Image by Madalyn Cox


As a professional trainer I get to test out SO much training gear. Let's talk about my "Must Haves" 

The Voila Training Pouch

Hands down my favorite silicone pouch and is my current everyday favorite. Use the link and code "WISER10" at checkout for my discount. It comes in large and small and will set you back around $50, but it will last a few years. 

Biothane Long Line
A simple way to reduce pulling is to use a longer leash. Dogs simply walk much faster than we do. I love using a biothane long leash to walk my dog, it allows him to sniff in front and behind me. I usually recommend choosing a length between a 10 feet and 20 feet. I personally choose a bright color so that it's easier to be visible, and so I can see before I get tangled. There are some leash handling skills to learn associated with managing a long line, so this isn't easy for everyone initially. 

Tug Toys: 
When choosing a tug toy you want something long enough and distinct enough that you will easily be able to teach the dog to target the tug and not your hands. I love the selection presented by Clean Run. You can make braided poly-fleece ropes at home too. Tug skills are a vital part of teaching dogs to put teeth on desirable things. 

Grooming Products: 
My bathroom closet is lined with Best Shot Pet Products. I swear by the One Shot spray for cleaning off muddy feet or a refresher between baths. The Ultra Maxx Line has a coat release system that's better than the products sold in stores. And They're local to Kentucky.  

A note on Equipment Fitting: 
When it comes to management/containment equipment such as collars, leashes and harnesses my rule is that it should be fitted so that they absolutely cannot escape it. If you can try to pull your dog's harness or collar off over their head like a T-shirt and you can slip it off then it's possible for them to back out of it. It needs to be adjusted tight enough that the elbows cannot get under the girth. 

Leads & Leashes
When it comes to the the best leash, I suggest doubling the leash over in your hand and having a friend pull hard, is it comfortable in your hand? find something that you like to the touch, especially if you like walking your dog. soft leather is always a favorite, but a 1" wide nylon lead is too wide to double over and grip, (at least) in my medium sized hands. Find something you like. When I have young puppies that need frequent potty trips outside... fast... I use a limited slip-lead or a mendota slip lead


The collar needs to be adjusted so that it cannot be slipped over the ears. I frequently suggest a martingale collar as it loosens and tightens when needed. If you are using a head halter such as the gentle leader, the neck strap needs to be fitted as a snug fitting collar, but the snout strap should be loose enough to be comfortable (at least after it's been trained and conditioned). 


Typically I start young puppies in a Y style or "Roman"style harness (I don't recommend the type that clips behind the shoulder blades. I suggest using a price effective option as the first purchase since puppies will grow. We will teach them how to behave in a collar later, but we don't want to let them practicing pulling in a collar until we're ready to teach it. My suggestions with links for harnesses are below. Be sure to measure the girth and compare it to the size chart. 
Petsafe 3-in-One

Petsafe Sure Fit Harness 

Blue 9 Balance Harness (hard to fit, long backed dogs)

Dog Beds
If your dog chews a bed, don't worry that's normal. Dogs have a need for productive chewing. The best bed for big chewers is the Kuranda Bed. You buy it for life. Second to them Ballistic k9 Pet Beds is popular. Most of these items retain their value so long as they're in "gently used" condition. For dogs that don't chew things up and run a little hot the Cooleroo bed is an option with a larger footprint. For dogs that get elbow sores and don't chew, professionals like the Primo Pad as a crate pad that sanitizes easily. 

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Below I have used my amazon affiliate links I make some fraction of a cent on the dollar if you purchase from my links, but you pay no greater purchase price.

If you prefer to support an independent bookseller I recommend Carmichael's Bookstore or Dogwise Publishing. You may also choose to support the Louisville Free Public Library in your search for the following titles. 

Puppies & Manners

Social Civil & Savvy

Easy Peasy Puppy Squeezy

How to Behave So Your Dog Behaves

Beyond The Back Yard: Train Your Dog To Listen Anytime, Anywhere!

Bones Would Rain From The Sky: Deepening Our Relationships With Dogs

The Culture Clash; A New Way Of Understanding The Relationship Between Humans And Domestic Dogs

Dog Communication And Learning:

Doggie Language

On Talking Terms With Dogs: Calming Signals

How Dogs Learn

Cooprative Care: Seven steps to stress free husbandry

Plenty in Life Is Free: Reflections on dogs, Training and Finding Grace

Better Together: Collected Wisdom of Modern Dog Trainers

Dog Training for Kids

Dragons, Unicorns, Chimeras & Clickers: How To Train Your Fantastic Beasts

(For kids reading short chapter books)

Health and Wellness:

Dog Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook

Behavior Problems:

When Pigs Fly! Training Success With Impossible Dogs

Oh Behave!: Dogs from Pavlov to Premack to Pinker

Mine! A Practical Guide to Resource Guarding in Dogs

Separation Anxiety in Dogs: Next Generation Treatment Protocols and Practices

Desensitization & Counterconditioning: Teaching Dogs to Willingly Accept Medical Procedures

Fired up Frantic and Freaked Out: Training Crazy Dogs From Over The Top To Under Control

Click to Calm: Healing the Aggressive Dog

Behavior Adjustment Training 2.0

Advanced Sports:

Awesome Obedience:

Agility Right From The Start

Nose Work Handler: Foundation to Finesse

Dog Sports Skills (Series, 3 books)

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