Blessings, both human and canine! Please take a moment to read our introduction here. I am certain our story will connect with most. Too often dog owners get overwhelmed with all sorts of new or fad information, products and (so-called) “secrets”–much of which is conflicting, and lots of which run opposed to simple, common sense. Some simply want to train their new puppy. Others want to recondition their new rescue, or merely work out a bad behavior with a dog they love. Still others desire to go further–whether that be a service dog, search and rescue, sporting, protection, or other type of working dog. And almost every dog owner strives to learn as much as possible for the safety, health and well-being of their beloved pal.
Pup Stop was created to help weed out senseless (often exploitative) products, activities and services–much of which can be quite costly, both financially and otherwise. We hope to help folks get fast, accurate answers to their questions and needs for their furry companions, that are fairly easy to implement and usually fun for both the two- and four-legged. At Pup Stop we will share who we are, what brought us here, where we aim to be, as well as the step-by-step journey to get us there.
So I hope you are excited! You just plopped right in the midst of an endeavor determined to make a class A search dog and home companion, out of quite an energetic and nutty, high-drive Dutch Shepherd, addressing all the issues that come with such a task. You now have front-row seats to observe how we grow on this trek–the successes and mistakes.
What brought us here
It seems anymore that everyone is an expert when it comes to training dogs. I gotta tell you, though I have had dogs all my life and trained them myself, I certainly hold no claim to expertise. My first dog I trained was a Norweigian Elkhound I got for my 13th birthday. By the time she was two, she could climb ladders (and most other things!), open screen doors, and was the best companion a kid could want. At 15, we went on to take a ribbon in the local 4H Master’s Obedience show. “A ribbon.” Not “the ribbon.” My dog, Lady, performed perfectly, but I messed up! At 17, while working at a dog kennel, my boss pulled me aside to teach me training of protection dogs. Well, that was his spoken intent. As I stood suited up waiting for the 125 lb. Rott to be released, it dawned on me that they merely needed a stand-in decoy for a few weeks. Still, whether training for simple obedience, to the cutest tricks, all the way to some of the toughest tasks, I find dog training altogether fascinating, exhilerating, and, while it may stretch the nerves at times, one of the most satisfying ventures.
But, omg, can it be expensive, confusing, and altogether one of the most frustrating activities–even before you get your dog involved! There are so many “secrets”, tactics, tools, treats, that “professionals” insist are “the best.” Even a mere stroll through a pet shop, or even a page on Facebook, there are arguments everywhere in response to “best practices” for pretty much everything relating to (and sometimes not) dogs. Like many other areas of dog training, while looking for assistance in training my Dutch Shepherd for search work (specifically cadaver search) all I could find were expensive “schools” and seminars way out in other states, a few high-dollar books, and a couple quick videos that usually just show off what their dog is doing. Which, by all means! Show that pup off! …but that doesn’t help much 😉 Meanwhile, many times I attempted to make contact with a few local, and not so local, SAR (Search And Rescue) clubs. What response did I get? *crickets* I understand folks are busy, but while my pup grows there are things she needs to learn from early on. That much I understood. So I buckled down and did what I do–search, weed and try it out.
By trade I am a private investigator (PI), so weeding and verifying information and their sources is on auto-drive for me. If you scroll the web at all, especially social media, you can see this is not so for everyone. Along my search, specifically cadaver dog training (or HRD, Human Remains Detection), I could not help but wonder how many others are “out there”? How many others are searching for valid, sensible, affordable advice or help in training their dog? For even just basic things? Or even advice in choosing a dog? How many of those get caught by the hooks of some of the most ridiculous, and sometimes dangerous, “training tips” or “tools” and end up ruining a good dog?
So if there are so many “experts”, why are the shelters so full? Take a stroll through your local dog pound, a shelter or two. Then ask yourself why so many dogs are there. Certainly it is not the only reason, but a majority are tossed away merely because the owners simply had no sensible, affordable resources to understand the breeds, train their companions, or get help with various issues. I hope to help stop that.
Meet the Team
Our Team is mainly composed of Hanani, Mia and me, Lynnette. You’ll likely see my husband, Jamie, bouncing around here and there as well.
Hanani is a female, blue brindle, Dutch Shepherd, born Nov. 2016, from a long line of dogs involved in protection and police work. Her name is Hebrew from the Old Testament and means “God has been gracious to me.” We pronounce it Hah-nah-nee, although its original is different. Hanani was an unwritten prophet of God, brother of Nehemiah. Our Hanani we obtained from a kennel in Florida when she was 4.5 months young. We sought specifically for a dog to train in HRD, to be a key partner in my work as a PI.
Mia (Mee-ah) is a blue Merle American Pit Bull Terrier I have had since she was barely on dry food. She is 5.5 years old now (3/2018) and is the best cuddle buddy. I originally obtained her from a local “breeder” (more on that another time) for the same purposes–HRD training. See folks? This endeavor has been a long time coming! Her name simply means “mine”, because she is! Though still a sneaky, boisterous Bully, she is a bit “soft” for a Pit, but the perfect partner in helping me train Hanani in our home.
Me…Lynnette… Gosh. I am simply an ordinary person with an extraordinary passion to help folks understand and work better with their canine companions. I do not claim to “know it all”, but hopefully you may learn something, even from my mistakes. I won’t argue with folks and do not claim my ways are the only ways, but will always provide bonifide resources, tips and sensible advice that has been proven. We are here to speak to other ordinary folks that want to learn and do not want to waste time searching forever, and/or spending enormous amounts of money unnecessarily. Anyone that wants to argue, bully, or be just plain rude doesn’t need to hang around 😉
Jamie is my husband, and we have been married since June 2017. One of the things he asked me when we were first engaged was if we can “just have Mia.” In other words, not get any more dogs! He does love dogs, don’t get me wrong, but he is not what we would call a “dog person.” Jamie helps lots with our morning routine, but had quite a different approach to training before he and I met. We’ll cover more of that as we move forward, for addressing balance and consistency in the home with our companions is a must. And here we have a fabulous example of learning how to do that!
Thanx so much for coming to visit today. We truly hope you find help and enjoyment with us as you return frequently for updates, or even simply entertainment 🙂 Please do not hesitate to ask questions. We are here to lend a hand!
Mia, Hanani, Jamie & Lynnette