Online & Skype Animal Behavior Clients
“I can’t believe it! I can’t thank you enough for all your help!…”
“Thanks for checking in! Obi has been doing really well. We have been able to completely stop the barking habit, and the pinning has largely stopped as well. It really didn’t take too long, maybe a week or so. Recently, he has even started to play again with some of the dogs that he was pinning.
We ran into one of them the other day, and Obi went right up to him doing the boxer wiggle and play bowing. The other dog was pretty confused given what happened in the past.
The only real issues that persist are an aversion to golden retrievers in general, and some of the leash aggression stuff towards dogs that bark at him when he is on leash. We are working on it!
We have been carrying treats to assist with training, and Obi has been fine even when other dogs beg. I can’t believe it! I can’t thank you enough for all your help! Thanks again and Happy New Year!”
~ Hanna Griffiths & Obi, Skype Client
In December 2012, I adopted two rescued Siberian Husky pups, Ari and Hina, found running in the desert west of Tucson. I brought them home in a large kennel, thinking “Oh, I’ve had dogs all my life and I’m good at this,” and realized right away I was in way over my head. At almost 5 months old, they were extremely skittish, hand-shy and literally terrified of me and everything around them. The first night it took me 3 hours to catch them and bring them indoors for the night.
Then I remembered Alana. I had magically run across her book at a New Zealand book shop on a trip in 2011. I contacted her and we set up a phone consultation and it was the BEST start I could have ever asked for. Alana’s advice on the use of food as positive reinforcement for basic eye contact and distance work was a pivotal tool and helped me set the right tone with Ari and Hina. She also instructed me on important signals I could give to the dogs through my body-language that would get them to trust me so they would allow me to approach them. I saw immediate changes in Ari and Hina after implementing Alana’s suggestions. Learning to understand what my dogs need (and not what I want them to do in any given situation) has been the most powerful education I have ever had in my life with dogs.
Because of Alana’s direct support and the knowledge she shared, Ari and Hina are now calm, happy, well-behaved, and well-adjusted dogs.
~ Susan Banes (OMDog), Tucson, AZ, Phone Client
“…the new litter box arrangement you recommended has been working great.”
I think I neglected to tell you… the new litter box arrangement you recommended has been working great. Mica covers his projects like a pro—no more pathetic scraping at plastic sides!
~ Jonathan Balcombe, Ph.D., author of Second Nature: The Inner Lives of Animals and The Exultant Ark, Phone Client
“Thanks for all your help!”
Charlie is doing great! Katie has baked him some carob treats and now some peanut butter treats—he loves both of those—the running and food treats are working really well. Now he isn’t growling or even lunging for other dogs — worst case he tries to turn and look at the dogs—but he is not being aggressive at all when we see other dogs on the walk.
The leash techniques have meant much less pulling in general. So a huge improvement in such a short time! Thanks for all of your help!
~ Nick Pendergrast & Charlie, Australia, Skype Client
“…thank you for all your help with my cat.”
Just wanted to write to thank you for all your help with my cat. MiYammo has not only used her litter box exclusively since you advised me on changing the box, but she is also visibly a happier cat.
She has been purring more often than not for the past few weeks. Her coat is super shiny and healthy thanks to the bonito flakes you recommended.
I got a new couch about two weeks ago, and she has taken it over as a napping and cuddling place— and NOT a litter box—so I am so happy.
~ Liz Clayman & MiYammo, Brooklyn, NY, Skype Client
“…things are great—you are a genius!”
~ Laura Scaduto & Massimo, Washington, D.C., Skype Client
“We are very thankful for her help.”
I came to Alana for help with our newly adopted 8 year old chihuahua mix named Chimie. We adopted her from Tennessee, where her foster mom had rescued her from poor living conditions. I sought Alana’s guidance for help with Chimie’s eating habits, socializing and mobility around our apartment.
Prior to our 2 hour phone consultation, Alana gathered detailed information about Chimie through a questionnaire and a few videos I sent over, all of which gave her a clear picture of Chimie and what the problem areas were. During our phone consultation, Alana provided constructive feedback on not only how to help Chimie with her fear issues, but also gave us insight as to possible reasons why Chimie behaved the way she did. This was most beneficial as it enabled us to change our perspective on her socializing ability, and helped us approach the training in a gentle yet effective manner.
Chimie will always need special care, but Alana provided us with the tools and guidance to help her become the best dog she can be. We are very thankful for her help. ~ Joy Mathew & Chimie, Phone Client
Emma & Charlie
“We’ve definitely had success using the methods you gave us.”
We’ve definitely had success using the methods you gave us. Emma spends a lot more time now on laps or on the bed instead of under it. Charlie and Emma are doing great. They will walk up to each other and touch noses sometimes, or rub their cheeks together.
We finally got to the point where they can be together at night, so we are both back to sleeping in our normal bed (hooray!) Emma is finally using the steps to get up onto the bed. So, good news all around. Thanks so much for all your help! ~ Elizabeth Grimm, Emma & Charlie, Phone Client
“Alana helped us over the phone.”
Alana helped us over the phone. Quinto was a very scared cat when we found him and he would always run away whenever anyone would get too close to him.
Alana let us know we had a lot of work to do! After spending a few hours speaking with us, we were reassured that with kindness and patience, Quinto would come out of his shell and learn to trust us.
We played with Quinto with the Cat Dancer. He really loves his toy. He now sits on our laps and purrs when we touch him. He is still scared around strangers, but he doesn’t run and hide anymore when he meets new people like he used to do. He is so much better since we started behavior modification.
~ Jeff & Quinto, Phone Client
“Alana’s advice has been invaluable…”
Alana’s advice has been invaluable in helping Asha become less anxious and happier in her environment. Asha was rescued off the street and had to be declawed because she constantly attacked people and animals. She has been living with me for one year and now enjoys being brushed and petted. She also enjoys playing with string toys, which in the beginning she found too frightening to do. She still doesn’t tolerate other cats well, and I still can’t pick her up, but she continues to become more relaxed each day. I am grateful to have her in my life and grateful for Alana’s assistance in helping us develop a better relationship.
~ Kim A. & Asha, Phone Client
Sasha & Lola
“Thanks again for your excellent counsel…”
“Thanks again for your excellent counsel and help in restoring peace to our household! The kitties are doing quite well now. They are affectionate with each other most of the time and despite there still being ups and down in their relationship, the downs are usually mild and transient. Thank you!”
~ Danit Bolotnikoff, Sasha & Lola, Skype Client
Lily & Sophia
“Alana is a lifesaver!”
“When my kitties, Lily and Sophia, got into a fight one night, it was unusual in its intensity. What was unusual was how Lily continued to react to her big sister, Sophia, for the following hours and days. She was hissing, growling, and hiding to the point where I had to separate them. This was painful to me because they are sisters from the same litter, are very bonded, and have never been apart.
When the behavior continued—as did additional fighting—I started looking for help and found Alana. She had me shoot some video of the behavior, answer some questions, and then we met via Skype. She taught me things about feline behavior I never knew (even after being a cat guardian since I was a child). Not only was it incredibly interesting, she was able to identify the source of the behaviors and gave me the methods I needed to resolve the problems. With a few simple corrections to break the behavior patterns, my girls were back to themselves almost over night. Every now and then, they will get into an argument, but now I know how to break it up and correct through positive reinforcement. And it works every time. Alana is a lifesaver!”
~ Jen Smith, Manchester NH, Skype Client
Casey & Sparky
“Alana truly helped me so I could keep both of my cats.”
“I own two rescue cats, Casey and Sparky. Casey was the first. He was lonely and needed a companion so we adopted Sparky. I did not anticipate what a challenge it would be to integrate the two because of Sparky’s aggression towards Casey. I’ve owned many cats and never experienced an extended period of escalating aggression. I thought I might have to return Sparky to the shelter after Casey got a deep wound that took several weeks to heal. I found Alana and contacted her because she uses humane training methods and I thought that the situation could be controlled with reputable, professional help.
Alana did not live in the immediate area that I lived in, but she was able to advise me using several methods. Alana read questionnaires I filled out, watched videos I took and consulted with me on Skype. Her assessment of the situation, including why Sparky was acting aggressively towards Casey, was extremely helpful. She made recommendations on steps I should immediately take to improve the situation. Sparky’s aggression lessened and Casey’s confidence improved after I followed Alana’s advice. Alana met with me again on Skype for additional support while I was reintroducing them. Today, the cats get along so much better. I also know what steps I should to take to maintain peace. Alana truly helped me so I could keep both of my cats.”
~ Karen Fontaine, Skype Client
Jenny, Tippitai, & Hazel
“Thank you again for saving our sanity!”
“The cats are still using their litter box with no problems or messes and it’s awesome!!!! There’s no marking of the hallway rug or outside the bathroom any more and no pee outside the litter boxes. We even went away for 2 days at a time here and there and the person checking on our cats had no issues either! Strangely this is the best feeling ever! Thank you again for saving our sanity!”
~ Shannon and Brendan McArdle, Jenny, Tippitai, & Hazel, Skype Client