Three winter tips
Reinforce Without Food
Somehwre Under The Threshold
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Kaiya on hill
 Don't let the dogs eat it. It taste sweet and they love it.


Rinse their pads with a towel and warm water


It can cut the pads and be hard on their paws. There are many options for booties in the winter.

Alex and Ty
Our Animal Friends In Queensland, Australia need our help. The floods were devastating.
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Shedd Aquarium in Chicago has an awesome training program. This is amazing
Clicker Training An Octopus: Will He Fold My Laundry?
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I think dogs are the most amazing creatures: they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive Gilda Radner


Vol. 2, Issue 4
January 2011
kona's touch
It's the New Year and
It's "Train Your Dog Month"

Dear Friends.
Hi, welcome to the New Year. Last year the APDT started a new program for January called Train Your Dog Month. kona's touch is pleased to be entered in a blog writing contest to promote positive training in the field. My clients and friends may be the wrong choir to preach to since you are and have been on the positive plan for a long time. We will preview two of our "special" blogs here this month and hope you all enjoy the wonderful relationship positive dog training brings to you and your canine best friend.

We've had some medical issues to deal with and that couldn't have come at a better time in terms of sharing with my readers our subject of this month's contest. This month we are "At home with the dogs of kona's touch". Join us for an up close and personal side of this dog trainer, who is also a dog mom.
One never knows what's going to happen in life, and with three dogs in the house it can get interesting. One thing's for sure, there's a whole lotta love goin' on.


Be gentle, after all isn't that what you would want for your best friend,
Laura Dorfman, CPDT-KA
Owner and Founder
Loose Leash Talkin'
Reinforce Without Food? Yes We Do It All The Time

Star watch me at the vet

Sometimes a Hot Dog
Just Won't Do
Dealing with Little Star's dental issues has reminded me of a point I make to my clients all the time. "No, you will not need food in your pockets for the rest of your dog's life and yes, there are other things to make your dog happy to work". That was certainly true when  Little Star went to the vet for her surgery.
Little Star and I go way back in terms of positive reinforcement training, and thus have a respectful, honest relationship. So, when they tell me Star can't eat after midnight, it only bothers me because I feel bad for my baby who is clearly now the hungriest dog on the planet. Little Star has many reinforcers and I noticed that morning many have to do with her face and head.

When we aren't using food, we reinforce with her best friend the tennis ball and her second best friend, the rainbow squeaky toy she got from her Auntie Pat. The long brown snake comes in third. For praise, which Star is happy to work for, it's the "Rub Rub Face Face" or the "I Love You" game which sends her tail wagging into Nirvana. When dental surgery is in order, and she has pain in her month and face, we go into creative mode and play an energy based "Rub Rub Face Face" game. In this version, I hold my hands just a few inches from her face and do the motion. When distance is important, we play the long distance "I Love You" game. After everything we've been through, our ace in the hole is the  "I Love You" game.

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Healin' News

Somewhere Under The Threshold                        Lhotse' and Buddha


Human: "It's pouring out, I can't see a thing, I'm lost. I don't CARE what we have for dinner. I may never eat again. All I care about is my life, my future, surviving this mess of traffic. MAKE IT GO AWAY."


Dog: "Ruff ruff RUFF RUFF Lunge lunge, snarl GROWL ruff ruff RUFF RUFF Lunge LUNGE snarl growl ruff ruff RUFF RUFF RUFF RUFF MAKE IT GO AWAY"  


If there's one thing we share with dogs (and I believe there are many),  it's the ability to be overwhelmed and afraid for our survival. When we don't know how to control it, that's when it gets loud.


I've been thinking lately about dogs and threshold.  


Let's talk about going over threshold. It is the invisible line in life that takes you from rational thinking to pure emotion. It is the "straw that's breaks the camel's back". It is the line that we cross between feeling control or out of control. In our dogs going over threshold overrules their ability to learn and they can't act on what they already know.


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kona's touch offers positive dog and puppy training or consultation for Chicago's North Shore. Our positive training and consultations help you and your dog to create a respectful, loving relationship.

At kona's touch, we use peaceful clicker training techniques based on scientific knowledge and years of experience in canine behavior for fun family dog training. For dog training or your personal consultation, call 847-204-7100 or email me at


Laura Dorfman, CPDT-KA
kona's touch, inc.