Group Classes at The Bark Lounge

Posted on February 8, 2016Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Dogs, News And UpdatesTags , , , , , , ,

BarkloungelogoHave you heard of The Bark Lounge? It’s a 24 hour dog daycare/indoor dog park located on Barnett Highway in Coquitlam, next to Trail Appliances and across from Bosley’s, and we think it’s great.

They have several rooms for the dogs to play in, and they take the dogs out for active urban agility hikes. They are a great option for folks who work night shifts because they have staff there overnight.

You should check it out, especially if you or someone you know has a new puppy, because trainer Carol Millman will be running a Puppy Play School group class there, starting February 27th!

Check out our new Group Classes (Tri Cities) page to learn more about this fun, family friendly group class, and please do look up The Bark Lounge!

And check back often, because once Carol is off of her maternity leave she will be offering Leadership Classes for adolescent and adult dogs, Trick Dog Title classes and more!


Is Your Relationship With Your Dog Joyful?

Posted on January 17, 2016Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Dogs


Dogs are a lot of work. They need to be exercised and trained and fed and taken to the vet. They track mud into our houses and leave fur on our best date-night outfits. They slobber on us, and bark when the baby is sleeping, and sometimes we catch them eating out of the cat’s litter box.

Why do we bring these hairy, panting, pooping predators into our home?

Chances are that when you went out to get a dog, you didn’t picture getting your arm yanked off while your dog freaked out at the neighbour’s Chihuahua.

You didn’t picture tiny tooth marks running up your arm from a puppy who just doesn’t seem to know the meaning of the word “no!”

You didn’t dream about cleaning up that third puddle of diarrhea at 3 am.

You certainly didn’t think about the $300 vet bill to get the diarrhea cleared up.


Instead you were dreaming about a furry friend to cuddle on the couch with you, a companion for your Saturday morning hikes, and a playmate for your children. You imagined showing off your dog’s cute tricks to your friends, and having someone be overjoyed when you came home after a hard day.

Was it all an impossible fantasy?

Of course not!

One of the saddest things a dog trainer sees on a daily basis is an owner who has lost the joy they expected to have in their dog. They wanted to be proud of their dog, and to enjoy their dog. But, while they do love their dog, they feel like they spend every day fighting a battle of wills with the hairy demon of chaos that they invited into their home.

Dog ownership can be hard work, and it can sometimes be expensive, but it should never be miserable.

Dogs are our best friends and companions, and their love is a privilege and a joy. Our job, as trainers, is to help you tap into that joy – to help you find ways to end the battle of wills and turn your relationship around.

Wondering if your dog needs to be turned around? Take our quiz to find out!

We Need Your Help!

Posted on July 4, 2015Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, News And Updates

Carol and Amelia are writing a book!book cover wag the dog

Our first book will cover Wag The Dog training methods and aim to help teach people how to find the fun in their friendship with their dog.

But we need your help to make it great.

  • What is your current favourite dog training book, and why?
  • What do you feel is missing from dog training books that are currently on the market?
  • What types of dog training books seem easiest for you to read and enjoy?

Please let us know your thoughts!

Featured This Month: Walnut Struts His Stuff

Posted on October 14, 2012Format VideoCategories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Dogs, Great Tricks, Kids and Pets, Videos

Meet Walnut, a 1 year old Havanese Mix and our Wag The Dog of the Month!

Walnut’s eagerness to learn and his family’s willingness to keep raising their goals for him higher and higher have more than earned him a feature on our website. Check out how far this young dog has come in the past 9 months…

Walnut’s Bio:

Walnut came to Wag The Dog as a 4 month old puppy with a tendency to nip, snap, pull on the leash, and steal the family socks. He woke his family up at 6 am with his ear-piercing yips… even on a Sunday. He ran away when called, bit people on the bum, and basically acted like, well… an untrained puppy!

Continue reading “Featured This Month: Walnut Struts His Stuff”

Deconstructing Dominance: The Science Behind Wag The Dog

Posted on September 29, 2012April 25, 2021Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Animal Behavior, Common Mistakes Owners Make, Dogs, Training MethodsTags , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Is Your Dog Fighting For Dominance?

Perhaps one of the most commonly touted tenets of dog training is “be the leader”.

Whether the family dog is jumping up, growling, biting, or tugging at the leash, owners are advised by professionals and dog hobbyists alike to “lead the pack”.

It sounds good, and it’s an easy line for lay people to take – “Oh, your dog is misbehaving? You need to be the pack leader and be more dominant.”

Advice for how to do to do this usually involves things like going through doors first, eating first,  or turning your dog upside down, all of which are supposed to mimic the behaviour of wolves in the wild.

People think that they shouldn’t sleep with their dog, shouldn’t let him on the furniture, and shouldn’t share their table scraps.

When we meet a new client, we often listen to embarrassed confessions of doing all these things… and then we surprise them by telling them the truth: If you don’t mind your dog on the bed, it’s not a problem. You won’t create a struggle for power if your dog cuddles with you on the sofa in the evenings.

Yes, if you want your dog listen to you and respond to you, you certainly need to be the leader in the relationship. But that doesn’t mean you need to dominate your dog.

The Science Behind Dominance

Continue reading “Deconstructing Dominance: The Science Behind Wag The Dog”

Can Your Child Walk The Dog?

Posted on July 25, 2012Format VideoCategories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Dogs, Kids and Pets, VideosTags , , , , , , , ,

Walking safely on leash is one of the most important forms of controlling your dog.

A dog who tugs and pulls at the leash is not only annoying, but a danger to himself and others. Even a small dog can yank a leash out of his unsuspecting owner’s fingers and dash in front of a car. A large dog can do the same, but can also pull his owner right into the road with him. Owners of large dogs can have their fingers broken when their dog lunges at the leash unexpectedly, and may be pulled right off of their feet.

Photo credit to Tobyotter

The pulling-on-the-leash problem becomes even more serious in a family situation. A pregnant woman is precarious on her feet at the best of times, especially in wet winter weather. A pulling dog is simply an accident waiting to happen. Children also love to walk the family dog, but again, even a small dog can pull a child right over.

At Wag The Dog, we teach the entire family to control the family dog safely.

While children and dogs should always be supervised when together, it is entirely possible to teach them to play and interact in a safe and controlled manner. When you have taught both child and dog how to handle each other properly, the bond between them can be a truly heart warming thing to witness.

Some dog trainers refuse to work with child handlers, requiring an adult to handle the dog in training classes.

Not at Wag The Dog. We love to include children in the dog training process.

Even children under the age of two can be involved.

In the following video, 21 month old William participates in training the family dog to walk nicely on a leash with him:

If you are looking forward to doing the same thing at home, there are a few training pre-requisites that your dog and child must be able to meet:


  • Knows “leave it”
  • Good on-leash skills with an adult handler
  • Gentle at taking treats
  • Good off-leash control


  • Knows not to eat dog treats
  • Enjoys giving treats to the dog
  • Understands the concept of walking the dog
  • Follows single step instructions, like “walk over there” or “give the dog the cookie”

The best part about teaching a dog to walk nicely on leash with a child is that it boosts the bond between them. Dogs tend to get the upper hand over toddlers, snatching food from their hands and bowling them over when they are excited. When the leash is handed to a small child, the dog tends to treat the child as nothing more than a post that he has been tied to, and he quickly finds out that he can pull free of the post.

Training the dog to respond to the child’s instructions helps establish the child as “dominant” over the dog, and the frequent use of cookie rewards motivates the dog to follow the child.

How To Train A Dog To Be Walked By A Child:

The most important part of this process is starting the training off-leash.

If the dog learns how easy it is to pull the leash free from the child’s hands, he is rewarded for his efforts and more likely to do that again. If the dog pulls the child over, the child may be hurt, and safety is key in any dog training exercise!

Instead, start in a fenced yard or in the house, and have the dog choose to follow the child for the sake of frequent treat rewards. You can attach a command to that, such as “follow Susie” or (as in the video example) “Go with Will”. The dog begins to feel that he is choosing to stay close to the child as he or she walks around, and there is no opportunity to learn bad habits.

Only once the behaviour is well established do you want to actually try tying the dog to the child.

Incidentally, this is the best way to train any dog to heel nicely on-leash: start off-leash!

Remember that small children should always be supervised when walking or playing with the family dog, and that safety begins with teaching both child AND dog how to behave well around each other.

This exercise works on both, which is why we love it so much!

Photo Credit to JustycinMD

With a little work, you can help start a long and beautiful friendship. 

For more great tips on dog training, visit Wag The Dog often or follow us on Facebook. 

If you live in the Vancouver area and would like us to come to your home and help you in person, please don’t hesitate to email us at or by phone: 604-781-8448

Solve Your Dog’s Behavior Problem With One Easy Step

Posted on May 13, 2012Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Animal Behavior, DogsTags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

We see dogs with a variety of behavior problems:

  • Anxiety
  • Aggression
  • Barking
  • Destructive Behavior

and many more.

All of these problems require different approaches, and every dog requires his or her own unique set of steps to achieve a solution.

But there is one thing that almost all of our cases have in common:


Many of the dogs we see are under exercised. Others dogs get a lot of one kind of exercise but not enough of another.

One of the first steps we always take to approaching any behavior problem is to increase the exercise and to balance the KINDS of exercise the dog is getting.

We often find that many times, this in itself is the most effective step towards solving the problem. Quite frequently, this is the ONLY necessary step.

Is your dog getting enough of the right kinds of exercise?

Continue reading “Solve Your Dog’s Behavior Problem With One Easy Step”

Announcement: New Discount Available at Wag The Dog!

Posted on March 27, 2012Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Animal Health, News And Updates, Please Share

Great Vet, Great Discount!

We are delighted to announce that Wag The Dog now offers a 15% discount on services to clients of Healing Paws Veterinary Care in Port Moody!

This amazing veterinary clinic combines holistic approaches with conventional veterinary medicine, giving us the best of both worlds. To this great mix they add something even more special – a personal touch.

Those who have met the veterinarians and staff at Healing Paws will tell you that Healing Paws really cares.

When she isn’t training, you can often find Carol Millman working as a nurse at Healing Paws to keep up her animal health care skills. The positive staff atmosphere and their commitment to providing the best quality care possible makes her time there truly special.

Wag The Dog is a big believer in positive reinforcement, so we want to extend this discount as a thank you to Healing Paws for recommending Wag The Dog to clients, and for being so generally wonderful.

To learn about other ways to get discounts on services at Wag The Dog, check out our Rates, Packages and Discounts page!

To learn more about Wag The Dog, visit What We DoWho We Are, and Why We’re Different or check out our Facebook Page!

And Baby Makes Four

Posted on February 17, 2012June 11, 2020Categories 100 Reasons To Love Wag The Dog, Animal Behavior, Dogs, News And UpdatesTags , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

How do you explain a baby to your dog?

More and more families are waiting to have children, and often their dog is considered to be their furry first-born.

When a baby comes into the picture, the family dog often finds himself shunted to one side. Walks are curtailed and the family’s attention is eaten up by a wailing, squirming little creature who looks nothing like a normal human being.

“I thought lying on the floor and chewing things was my job…”

Some dogs adjust easily, and some adjust with difficulty.

Continue reading “And Baby Makes Four”