“One step at a time…” says Mark Laker

“One step at a time…” says Mark Laker

By Mark Laker

It’s been a year.

‘One step at a time’ a message which will forever remind me of Captain Sir Tom Moore motivating the nation with his incredible fund raising and life story – what an amazing man.

Taking one step at a time in my pre-lockdown world wasn’t easy

For the last 10 years I’ve had to be very flexible in my career as a Project Manager. I’d have a few days working from home, then I’d be away on business trips for 3-4 days, then a couple of days spent on-site locally. No day was ever the same. That all changed in March 2020 when we went into the first National Lockdown.

Since then, I’ve definitely been taking life one step at a time

That doesn’t mean I’m not planning ahead (I love planning), but for the first time in many years I’m now time-rich (sounds like consultant talk). I’ve had time to plan ahead, consider what I want/need to do, do it properly i.e. not rushing because I may not have time again, finish it, check it’s finished and then really make sure it’s finished. This may sound like common sense, but it’s surprising how many times we think we’ve completed a task/activity and then discover there were still some loose-ends. I suppose in dog training terms, it’s like proofing what you believe you’ve trained is the desired behaviour you’re getting.

And what about our dogs, how have their lives changed over the last year?

They’ve had even more exercise. Over the last year I’ve challenged myself to walk at least 5K every day. Karen has had time to brush up their existing skills and train new ones and of course they have our company at home all the time. Dogs are incredibly adaptable though, I’m sure they will soon adapt to the next routine as life changes again as lockdown restrictions lift.

I’m not sure what our next routine will be

I’m beginning to dislike the over-used term ‘new-normal’ because, I don’t want normal. It sounds boring, repetitive and non-eventful. I’m hopeful it will not be a new-normal, but life will be interesting, exciting and present different opportunities. I also hope there’ll be more appreciation for how fragile the planet and our lives are, and we’ll start seeing more proactive steps being taken to look after what we already have.

One step at a time.
———————-
Best regards,

Mark.

Dog walking etiquette – spreading awareness

Dog walking etiquette – spreading awareness

By Liz Marden

A common behavioural issue that I am regularly called upon to help clients with is: dog-dog reactivity.

Other than working on the issue itself, the main problem that these reactive dog owners are having, is other people in public places allowing their dogs to run up to them off lead.

This sadly can undo all the hard work and progress that the owner was making with their reactive dog, as well as causing a potentially dangerous situation to happen. This can also be the case for dogs who are kept on lead for a variety of other reasons such as in season, recovering from an operation, in training, assistance dogs etc.

Together we can spread the awareness of of ‘dog walking etiquette’

I would love to help these owners by spreading the awareness of ‘dog walking etiquette’ to all dog owners, that if they see a dog who is on lead, especially if they have signage on their coats/ leads and or wearing muzzles, that they need to call their dogs back to them and keep them under control until they are safely passed.

You can be prosecuted for your dog being out of control in a public place

Did you know you can be prosecuted for your dog being out of control in a public place under section 3 of the Dangerous dogs act 1991? This includes not being able to call your dog back!

If someone has their dog on lead and you allow your dog to run up to them causing an aggressive reaction then its your dog that is out of control in a public place – not theirs, as is commonly misunderstood.

Free poster

To do this I have created a free poster – I would be extremely grateful if you would please share this with all of your family, friends and clients to help me spread this awareness and help owners work together and be more considerate.

Owners allowing their dogs to run up to others without checking permission first is rarely done with malicious intent but rather due to a lack of awareness, so the more we can spread the word and educate people the less this will hopefully happen.

Share the poster on social media

As well you being able to share this picture on social media, the poster is also available to download for free in A4 or A3 here or on my website: www.natures-therapies.co.uk/online

Thank you in advance for helping to spread Dog Walking Etiquette Awareness! Liz Marden BSc(Hons) C.C.B C.A.B C.C.T C.A.T

Please like, comment & SHARE.

Download a poster in A3 or A4 size

Liz Marden is a qualified, certified and experienced animal behaviourist & trainer with her company Nature’s Therapies.

Liz Marden
Animal Behaviourist
Sekhem Reiki Practitioner
www.natures-therapies.co.uk
Tel: 07738 268400
(Mon-Fri, 9am-7pm)

C.C.B (Certified Canine Behaviourist) INTODogs
C.C.T (Certified Canine Trainer) INTODogs
C.A.B (Certified Animal Behaviourist) ICAN
C.A.T (Certified Animal Trainer) ICAN
UK Dog Behaviour & Training Charter