Lisa is joined by Verity Hardcastle who talks about her book Happy Dog, Happy You: A positive guide to a joyful relationship with your dog. Verity is a Master Groomer, Feature Presenter, TV Judge, Podcaster, Author, plus Grooming Judge, Exhibitor, Competition Groomer and Ambassador for Heiniger.
Award-winning dog groomer, TV personality and experienced dog handler Verity Hardcastle tells you everything you need to know in terms of dog care. From choosing a breed to practical diet and nutrition tips, and from knowing what to buy to behaviour training and exercise advice - discover how you can fill life with fun and create a joyful friendship with your dog.
With a positive focus on mindfulness and wellbeing, Verity shares her expertise as a dog handler and reiki practitioner to help encourage a calm daily routine, including mindful tips and techniques you can try at home or out on walks together. You will also discover how to communicate effectively with your dog, and learn beautiful bonding activities such as massage, meditation and ‘doga’ (dog yoga) to build a warm and loving environment in which you can both thrive.
dog , dogs , poodles , feel , life , feed , great , pets , doorbell , blue , jump , bark , puppies , food , house , training , crate , verity , yum , cues
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In addition to dog eared I have a show called Health power. And I've been in health media for 24 years radio, TV and podcasts and I really care about not just what I put in my body but what I put on my body. So I am absolutely in love with one Earth body hair. Now, I extend that to my pets. I'm very careful about what I feed them and I'm very careful about what I put on them. So I was so excited to find out that one or body care also has pet shampoo bars, which are phenomenal. They're gentle with organic oatmeal the smooth skin. Their isa neutral pH matches your pet skin pH last 20 Plus washes for Large Dogs and they're scented with pet friendly essential oils. They also have a skin fix for pets, organic coconut sunflower and jojoba oils. It has calendula which stimulates healing is great for hotspots itchy patches in their nose and paws. It's edible ingredients safe to lick and it's available with lavender oil or unscented so I highly recommend you go to one or body care.com Click on pets and get these for your pets and while you're there you can get wonderful things for your hair your face and body and more again why on earth body care.com?
Does your dog do well answering this question today is a fantastic Verity Hardcastle is read her book happy dog happy you a positive guide to a joyful relationship with your dog. It is fantastic. Verity Hardcastle is an award winning dog groomer TV personality and experienced dog handler she is a multinational international award winning groomer at championship level. She shows miniature and toy poodles and has been working with dogs and around dogs all of her life. Verity Welcome to dog eared and does your dog do
so because I've got four dogs, I think they're always got this sort of competition element for my attention. So if I come in the house, they will all be racing around trying to find the nearest object. It might be my daughter's Barbie. It might be a toy, you know if they can grab anything, like even a dog bed. I've had the dogs like literally like, Look what I've got, and they look at me so eagerly.
Love that and when did your love of dogs begin?
Oh, as long as I can remember I was I used to play like guest the dog breed when I'd be driving in the back of the car, you know, trying to name and what I used to collect the little they used to be called puppy my pockets, these little figurines of all different breeds. And they used to come with you know, like a top Trump's type card. I used to study them and I was I was obsessed and I loved going to spend time with my granddad he obviously had a gun dog kennels. So I'd love going up and going into the woods and walking his pack of dogs and just spending time feeding. I can still smell I don't know if you have Jace fluids over there. But I can still smell the smell of Jays fluid, which is what used to keep clean all the candles were and it can still smell their food as well. He had them in these big metal bins. And it was like this meal. And he used to put hot water over it and I can you know, it was really fun memories really. So as long as I can remember, I was just absolutely obsessed. I'd be the girl that like friends parties who would just be in the dog bed, like just chatting with you know, my friends dogs like oh, no, I'm okay over here. Thanks very much.
I really I want to jump right into your book. Just like you. I wanted a dog so badly. And your parents wouldn't let you have a dog. So you saved up and left home at 18. Yeah, I am so impressed. I just let them send me to college. So I didn't get a dog till I was 33. So I just want to say that's awesome and Dobermans, were your particular dog that you love. Tell us about this.
Yeah. I don't know why I had this obsession with Dobermans. I mean, not exactly a beginners dog. I do come from a family of you know, hard working dog people, but a Doberman and kudos to that breeder who actually was looked at me and said, Yeah, yeah, we'll let her have one of our show quality Doberman puppies. Yeah, sure. You know, she looks responsible enough, because I don't know if I would actually do that with one. You know, one of my dogs. I'm not sure. But yeah, yeah, she took a punt on me. And obviously it paid off. I'm still friends with him out.
Let's talk about in chapter one you have choosing a dog, you tell us about the three C's.
So is calm, consistent and confident. So it's just all about how you should be as a guardian. Yeah.
And you also talk about things that are so important. Like you have to look at your lifestyle. Are you at home? Are you not at home? Do you have the time to dedicate? Who's looking under your roof? Do you have small children? How much experience do you have expand on these for us?
So we saw it more than ever, I think during the pandemic where you know, people were at home, they're thinking, oh, what should we do? We'll get a dog and people don't plan ahead because dogs are with us for life. And you've got to think about how our lives evolved. I mean, when I got that Doberman, I was single that I had a I got into a bit of a relationship with a guy then I split her upset I was back home. You know, I was sort of like move back home with my mum for a bit with a you know, a huge Doberman and then you know, moved out met my husband now I have children she was with me when I have had my first baby. I'm 38 now. And so she little she was 13 and a half bless her. But you can see how dogs go through this evolution of life with us. So it's not just a dog shouldn't be that knee jerk reaction. Oh, yeah, you know, we've got to think about how our lifestyles can change how your career can change and just making sure that we're equipped you know, to equip the dog for all these chapters in our life, but also that we're equipped ourselves to obviously give this dog a home for the rest of its life which is our duty really when we when we take on a dog isn't it you also think about have to think about what your hobbies and your interests your lifestyle, you know, I see all too often runners out running on a warm day with their brackets are phallic nose dogs, you know, the dogs are the really squishy noses, boxers, pugs, things like that. And you just think, well, this isn't the right pair and you've got that dog on looks alone. So you really have to think about your hobbies, your lifestyle, your interest. If you enjoy hillwalking, get a collie, you know, if you enjoy being a sofa, sofa, swap, get a bulldog, you know, it's it's about equipping yourself and your dogs you know, so you can really work together, not just choosing a dog because you can have like the look of that dog because there's so much more to it as you well know than that isn't
Oh, yeah, yeah. Well, it's funny because my first dog I had no clue he was just so cute. And he had just been in an accident ready to be hit by a car and like he might need surgery. We weren't paying rent because we were living for free. It might you know, the law apartment. I'm like, we're getting this we're taking this dog I didn't know anything. Turns out he was a pit bull Border Terrier mix absolute sweetheart, Bailey, I mean, just you turned out great. But you never we didn't plan it. We didn't know anything.
If you go, rabbits or cats at home, you also have to look at traits within dogs as well. Because even though you're saying, you know, you know every dog is very different. And you don't necessarily if you go back to the Collie, you might not get a colleague with those Collie traits. But generally, you know you have to look at dogs to avoid to I wouldn't say avoid like a terrier, if you're gonna if you've got like small animals like that, because more often than not, they have these traits within them, where they see these small animals that they just can't help themselves. It just you know, they can't
exactly yeah, we had some incidences with some rabbits in our backyard, which did not end well. You know, it's sad. Wow. Not anybody's pets. But still Yeah, there terrier.
In a Border Terrier. It just, you know, it was in there.
Yeah, absolutely. Now in chapter two, you have getting organized, you have a wonderful checklist for your dog. And one thing that I've gotten really serious about is food. So you have food for thought, what are you going to feed your dog so just because I don't want to bore everybody Long story short, blue, my pity has a lot of allergy. So he eats squash, Turkey and peas right now with you know vitamins and other stuff. And it's working great for him. And then I have my dog Benji, who's a lab who doesn't have any sensitivities on yum woof, which is an air dried food that I really love. And the more I learn about kibble and seed oils, and the way they cook it, the more I'm like, yeah. But what do you do if you don't have the money? Like I was just talking to a young woman recently. He's like, I don't want to feed my dog kibble. But I can barely afford to feed myself. I'm a college student, like what do you say for that,
if you're gonna get a pre packaged food, I would say that the most important thing is you have a look at the ingredients on the back of the food, just make sure that the primary ingredients aren't fillers, so animal derivatives and things like that. And just making sure that the majority of the ingredients are things that you've actually heard of things that you understand from your food cupboard. And I do, I'm a real firm believer of what you put in a dog you get out of a dog. So it's the same with those, you know, if you feed them on, you know, as best a new quality nutrition as you possibly can, then that is going to be the best for that dog's body and potentially harbor off illnesses and expenses down the road. It's also much better for their minds, obviously, because with a higher quality diet, they tend to have a much clearer mind. But my most my most important takeaway point I want to say to people is a lot of these cheaper foods, you have to feed the dog at much higher quantities of that for them to get the nutritional value out of that food. So when I'm feeding my dog a much higher quality food, it's weird because it almost looks like poverty portion. So I've like to write this, but that's all they need. That's all they need. And I do there is a real epidemic. I see it cuz obviously I work with dogs every day and dogs being overweight. I just feel like telling everybody, you want to save yourself 20 pound a month please just help your dog to lose some weight because you are spending way too much money on food feeding this dog. Because and obviously with that you've got you know, you're exacerbating you know, arthritis and all sorts of medical issues down the line as well. So that would be my main main take home. I know it's really tricky with some people, especially at the moment where money is so tight to feed their dogs that high quality food. But even from puppies though we have a cycle a food cycle in our house, so it's knowing what foods you can eat and what your dog can't eat. So when we finished our dinner there's any leftovers might have got children so anyone who has children at home, you know, they've always got dinner left on their plates. If I feel that that's safe for my dogs to eat, they've always had that mixed in their food they've always been like that. And because they've always eaten that way and even such a very diet it never upsets their stomach. So it's just understanding your dog as well and understanding what they can eat what upsets them uh, you know, because you know, you were saying about Blue Kent. So you know, you know your dog so that that's my main tips. Really?
Yeah, no, that's really helpful. Now you also have things about bringing the dog home and dog proofing your home and you know, keeping things out of reach Oh my dog got in the garbage so yeah, we'll get a garbage can that has a lid on it that you have to push you know step on to open I mean, maybe they'll figure it out but
I mean my tape and what was really really clever getting in in most bins, she would even know how to pop the lid on those probands your bins she just yeah, she was too clever too clever for a good but I call it like helping tomorrow self. So you know we're always trying to alleviate stresses in our house. So you know it's a case of trying to help tomorrow self by putting these things in place. tidying up wires behind TV stands and, and putting up a stair gate especially when you've got puppies because obviously stairs and puppies aren't a good mix anyway. So yeah, I I really like dogs to have their place where they can go as well. This is why I'm really into crate training even if they lay on your bed. That is absolutely cool. Let them lay on your bed, but we should still be crate training them.
Okay, now that's interesting before we get into crate training, so I had a lab Milo for a while and he would I don't know how he did it. He literally would open the jar of peanut butter. He not only could he jump up on the counter really high and you he would kind of balance and he would reach it from far back. But we would come home and he we do this been screwed on tight. I don't know how to do. Yes, it was amazing. So crate training. Yeah. So funny story with Bailey, our first dog. We got him at six. They guessed he was six months. We had no idea about anything. I never had dogs my husband did but I think he forgot. So we went out for the day we came home, all of our books had been chewed up all of our letters or everything. And I was so upset. And then I did some research. I'm like, Oh, I guess we should have a crate blue is going to be eight and a couple days, Benji's nine and a half, they have dog beds, what do you do with older dogs? Do they still need crates?
So I think it's about introducing them as young as possible. And there is a really positive way that you can introduce a crate, don't think of it like a cage, think of it like a den, I always think that people see a cage and they think, oh, you know, they're really anti that. So think of it like a den the dog safe space to go where they want to be left alone, you know, it's really important the dogs to have like their timeout space, especially if you've got you know, party or family coming around young children around, I think it's very safe and very sensible, because dogs need their sleep. And they should be allowed to go and rest and sleep. So it's just about introducing that crate in a really positive way. So you'd start by, obviously, leave the door open pretty much all the time, feed them in there, start throwing treats in there start to reprogram their minds, don't think of it something awful, they think of it as something really positive. So if you use lick mats or contours, yes, they can have that. And they're going to have it in there. And you start with the door open, you'd maybe do the door to and just very gentle, small steps. And then you can totally reprogram a dog to associate the crate with something really positive. Why I think that's so important is obviously as I mentioned, I think it's very important dogs should have a space where they can take themselves away and have quiet time where they're not going to be bothered, I have throws and covers over mine so that you know, they do look like a nice cozy den. But also, you know, if your dog's got to have an operation at some point in their lives, you just never know again what the future holds. So it's about having like, one of my dogs has just had to have surgery on her ear. And obviously the other dogs are mitering around her she wants to be left alone. So I'll just close her in her den and just give her some time out away from the rest of the dog so she can settle and, you know, I do think they're really really beneficial to be fair.
Oh, that makes sense. I'm glad that your dog how's your dog doing by the way she
says he was actually quite a traumatic thing we're on in the park about six weeks ago and she was bitten by another dog or dog just came out of nowhere. She's only toy poodle. She's very sociable. She's three and a half kg as well. She's tiny, and got hold of the end of the year anyway. So it's been this big pallava she got a hematoma. And it was the worst. No, it's just it's been. She's been in and out of the vets and obviously for such a little dog as well she's but weirdly enough, she's out walking again she's not It's not affected her which is marvelous she's back to her usual crazy giddy self. If you're on my Instagram, you'll know Gigi she's Yes. But what's the worst thing is obviously she's championed show dogs so she's had to lose her coat it's all had to come off because we had to treat the air and and that takes years to cram.
Yeah blue how to hematoma. We don't I don't even know what from what maybe just bumped against something and it got huge and now he has that shriveled up on a flower. Yeah, yeah, he still looks cute though. But he's not a show dog. It doesn't
know I'm not, you know, it's she's already made up and she's a champion. So it's, you know, it's, it's, it's not fine. It's just obviously her hair's a thing, you know, so it was like, I was sad for her and then obviously shopping along locks off. It was like, I'm so sorry, God, this is really, really demoralizing for you right now. So, but she's the puppet. She's She's living her best life.
Oh, good. Well, speaking of hair, you are a groomer. And you have a great chapter chapter 10. roomy, marvelous. And I love that you talk about the washing myth. And back in the day you talk about people washing their dogs with dish so yeah, and that's not good. And even regular shampoo, which I didn't know till few years ago. My daughter was like mom you just wash Benji with with shampoo. I'm like it was the problem. You can't do that. It's essential pH I found these great bars made by a company called one Earth body care. And they're fabulous. They make themselves very few ingredients. They have the right pH for dogs. And I watched Benji and he looks and smells amazing. And it really makes a difference. But I don't get either my dogs grown my lab sheds tremendously. So I brush him a lot myself. And then blue just has short hair and I just washed him what dogs need to be groomed. I mean she can I grew my lab.
I mean, I get Labradors. Yeah, I get Labrador said for a bath. And because a lot of people when they're going through that seasonal change, just like to get the worst, you know, the groomers can come and do a real deep shedding treatment and just get the worst of it all can Yeah, yeah, we just obviously yeah.
I'm vacuuming three times a day Verity, I didn't know there was a deep, there's a shedding type of treatment.
Basically, we use high velocity dryers just to remove all the loose hair. And then we use different types of brushes that help to remove the loose hair as well. So that obviously you're never going to eliminate the de shedding, but it just means that you'll be maybe vacuuming once every other day rather than three times a day. And then obviously, it's really important that we just keep a check on our dog's nails. Because when the dog stood on the ground, and they put the pore on the ground, the nails shouldn't be touching the ground. So if it as long as you can get, say a credit card under the nails, they're fine. But if those nails are touching the ground, and that's going to be putting pressure on their toes, and then obviously they can't really walk as they would naturally want to walk. So this is why road walking is really great, especially if you've got dogs like that just mixing up your terrains, for the dogs just to help wear down their nails as well.
Yeah, I can cut Benji's nails my labs because his quicks they're short, I guess, because there's a lot of meal, blues, I can't do myself, so I have to take them to get them done. And I'm glad that we're talking about this because I'm definitely overdue. I noticed with fluids, everything's like click, click, click, click click. And that yeah, that's not really good for them. What do you like most about grooming?
I think it's the immediate gratification of having a dog coming that's you know, looking like they've lived in a skip and given them some really nice shampoos conditioner, trimming up the hair, and then obviously, and then obviously seeing their guardians eyes like, ah, you know, savings just, it's just nice. It's just immediate gratification. Obviously, I like working with dogs. You know, what better job you know, I get to spend my I'm like a hairdresser. But I don't have to do the holiday chat. I could just talk to dogs. I mean, what's not to look like don't get me wrong, it is quite hard work. It is a physically tiring job. It's quite mentally tiring as well, because obviously, we're constantly reading body language I suppose half of what we do as Grievers is handling and, you know, adopting our handling to the dog that we've got in front of us, because obviously, some dogs are very nervous. Some dogs are very confident Some dogs are a little bit feisty, little bit spicy. And some dogs are really relaxed and we get elderly dogs puppies, you know, no two dogs are ever the same ever. And no two haircuts are the same. So it's very varied. I love it.
When did you first start grooming?
So we started when I was about 90 years old 1920 So I've been doing it a long time now. I'm a master groomer. I'm on the guild of master groomers. And thank you and I used to compete and now I'm a judge and obviously a show dogs as well. So obviously show poodles I'm sure you've all seen the photos of them at Westminster and crafts, you know, they've got a lot of hair. There's a lot of maintenance going on there as well. The hair is kind of their thing, but it but their proper dogs FYI Can I just say people Without proper proper dogs, like long walks, swimming all the rest of it, it's not just the hair
I love that you say that it's so funny because you picture them just like even the way they're portrayed in cartoons. So like kids get kind of socialized, like they're just like, little sci fi dogs that don't really want to get dirty or play or do anything and they're prissy, but you know, it's true.
Right? Pity's, Dobies. Rotties always the aggressive, nasty dogs out there that no one wants to be friends with. And poodles are always like the snooty dog. It's so true. Yes.
Yeah. I mean, I can, as I do, I won't go on about Blue. But boy, he's just a big smash he is you just cover so much. And you talk about the importance of being mindful and mindfulness practices, you write and be broken down broadly into several categories, including this is a quote, mindful breathing, mindful observation, mindful appreciation and mindful awareness. Talk to us about these and how they help you be a better dog parent. Yeah.
So just stepping back ever so slightly. I think it's really important that we understand how our energy and how we live our lives has a direct correlation on our dogs as well, we see a lot of mirroring of behavior, you know, see that, that frantic woman's trying to frantically get a dog back across the field and a dog's crazy, and she's crazy. It's, you know, the energy is all like, whoo, it's just really important that we understand how much dogs pick up on our energy and how much they are aware of, like stress cues, it'd be noticed, right? Have anybody who's listening next time, you're feeling a little bit stressed, notice how you ever so slightly flare your nostrils? So yeah, it's one of these micro cues that we don't even necessarily realize that we're doing. But dogs are so in tune with, for us that reading their behavior is part of what they do. They're problem solvers. So they're trying to read and understand us, you know, because most of the time, we just sound like we're talking gobbledygook. So they're listening to tone of voice, pitch, your voice, these micro keys, and our face and everything like that. So it's really important that not only for ourselves, and our well being, but also for our dogs, that we try and start to practice some of these things in our everyday lives. Because let's face it, life's very fast paced now. It's very stressful. And I think now more than ever, we should all be trying to implement these measures in which we can all just, you know, center and ground ourselves a little bit more.
Yeah, it's so true. Do you have any recommendations for how to start for people who just feel like I don't even have time to breathe? That's part of the problem. You're probably not breathing right now.
And for three out for five, lower the heart rate. So yeah, mindful breathing, basically is focusing on your breath. And it helps to alleviate stress. So you can do this with your dog as well. If you're laid up on the sofa, just take a minute, you might just want to put some relaxing music on because music has transformative effects as well. You imagine how you feel when like, dance music's on or heavy metal, and then just play some like folk music or, you know, even like Zen spa, sort of listen to the whale. And you'll immediately feel loads better. So breathing in for three out of five, focusing on your breath. Then we have mindful observation, which is taking in nature. So next time you're on a walk, just try sit down. While it's not just like, Oh, my goodness, got to get home got stopped dinner. Just sit down on your walk, let your dog be a dog go around and sniffing because that's just so good for the dog anyway, and just taking nature. So mindful observation is like looking at the clouds if you've never seen them before, looking at a flower and just observing how beautiful it is. And just listening. What can you hear name all the things you can hear, name, the different things you can smell. So it's just taking a moment just to take that quiet in your life. And then we have mindful appreciation. This is something that I absolutely love. This is about gratitude, being grateful. I practice this every morning, every night, every single day. And I have beside my bed a gratitude stone. So it's just a stone that I picked up on a walk that sort of looks kind of nice. You know if that's too strange people. And I totally I have it on my bedside table. And at the end of the day, I pick it up and it reminds me because I look at it and I reminds me to think about all the lovely things I did that day and pick my favorite say or I'm going through my day. Or you know, oh, that was so lovely. Like last week we had lovely weather in England yesterday, believe it or not, we do sometimes have lovely weather. So we had a water bite in the garden, which was really fun. I've got a three and a five year old so we were playing in the garden with the dogs like throwing water balloons. It was just crazy. So it's just going back through your day thinking about all these joyous things that might be something wasn't so good. You're like, skip over that onto something else. Good. And then in the morning, I always write down in my phone really quick just takes me two minutes. 10 things that I'm grateful for that day, and even when you're having a really, really bad day. That's all Something you can be grateful for, you've got food in your fridge, you've got to be grateful for that, you know, you, you slept in a warm bed, you there's always something that somebody can find that they're grateful for their friends, their family, how loved they are by their partner. So I'll just 10 different things every day. It doesn't take me long. And they just say thank you afterwards, for each one of those. And, yeah, and also, you know, if you're having a particularly bad day, it's amazing what just putting it I mean, you might feel like an absolute, you know, crazy person, but just put a smile on your face, fake it fake it, just put smile. And it tricks your brain into releasing serotonin and dopamine that make you actually feel better. So yeah, so it's just, you know, even if you're feeling really bad, just fake it till you make it basically. And my last one is mindful awareness. So this is basically focusing on your emotional state how you're feeling, because we all need to be aware more than ever of, you know, how we're feeling as well, especially when we have stressful jobs and busy lives, is taking that moment to think about how we're feeling in a situation what our triggers are, but also our animals as well have a look at your animals. You know, how they're feeling right now, you know, focus on their body language and just being aware of that as well. And then, and then, you know, doubling back. Why did I feel like that? What was my trigger for feeling like that? Just, yeah,
that's such great advice.
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Does your family include a dog or a cat? Would you like to be better educated on how to advocate for their health naturally, then why not check out all of the amazing resources on naturally healthy pets.com Dr. Judy Morgan is a trusted advisor and a regular guest here on the dog eared podcast. She has over 38 years experience as an integrative veterinarian, acupuncturist chiropractor, food therapist, author, speaker, podcast host and owner of Dr. Judy Morgan's naturally healthy pets. Dr. Judy's goal is to change the lives of pets by educating and empowering pet parents just like you in the use of natural healing therapies and minimizing the use of chemicals, vaccinations, and poor quality processed foods. Head on over to naturally healthy pets.com where you'll discover healthy product recommendations, comprehensive courses, the naturally healthy pets podcast, informative blogs, upcoming events and so much more. Again, that's naturally healthy pets.com The place to learn how to give your pet the vibrant life that they deserve.
Now I want to jump into some common issues to write in the book quote, the most common problems I tend to see are separation anxiety, pulling on a lead running off and barking. So let's talk a little bit about each one of these telehealth start with separation anxiety. And I again I want people to get the book again the book is fabulous, happy dog happy you but just give us just tell us a little bit.
So separation anxiety is probably the number one issue we probably see with our dogs. I don't know if you agree with that over in America, but in the UK, especially. And again, you know, I hate to keep reminding people about the awful face of our lives. That was the pandemic we were all at home. You know, everybody was at home everyone was sort of around the house, the dogs were brought up in that environment is suddenly gone. It's very stressful way for a dog to be. So do you think it's very important that we're looking at these cues about why our dogs are behaving? In this way, because I mean there's there's levels of stress, some dogs kind of keep their stress and a little bit more and some are very obvious. They'll shoot up your sofas, you cushions you know that there's very obvious signs. So if you're not sure about how your dog is, when you're out, you can get off online Amazon excetera, a very inexpensive mobile camera device for your home. So that you can watch your dog when you're out and you can have a look at they settled in their bed. So they look really relaxed, or like micro cues that they might do, which you might not notice pacing around looking to stress or to standing looking at doors. You know, that's not such obvious signs, then you also get the excessive barking, the scratching, and then the very obvious signs that they're distressed in the home. Now, we have to be aware that something like this needs to be tackled by a behaviorist. So it's not really something for a trainer, the trainer teaches your dog basic obedience, things like that. Whereas when it's anything to do with the mind, like separation anxiety needs to be really tackled by a behaviorist. So the sooner the better. Because it's pretty awful way for your dog to exist if they're feeling like that, because we are in and out quite a lot, aren't we? Oh, yeah. So we've got to go back and find out what is that point when the dog starts to feel like that? Is it Do they notice the cute because we normally always have a routine, don't we, when we're going out, we pick up our bag, we pick up our keys we put on our shoes, and then we need to have a look at when the dog is starting to get stressed and anxious. And basically just short form, you need to rewind back and capture those moments, and try and obviously reprogram their brain to associate it with not something negative, but something positive. But it takes an awful lot of time, a lot of patience. It's a lot easier to equip our dogs to feel safe, confident, secure by themselves in the early days than it is to rewind back and fix something that's instilled in them like this.
Yeah, I didn't even know there was a behaviorist until I read your book. I just thought the trainer had that in their toolbox. Yeah. Would you just look up dog behaviorist
say this different thing? Yeah, so dog trainers and dog behaviorist. Basically, a behaviorist is a much more specialist trainer. They've normally done a degree in canine behavior that you know, the mind of the dog, etc. So the like a psychologist for a dog, so they're a lot more qualified. And in the UK here, I don't know what your bodies are over there. But I always recommend the eye MDT, which is the Institute of modern dog trainers, they always go down the positive route, always positive reinforcement, positive training, which obviously I highly recommend. Yeah, I
was gonna bring that up. You have that in the book as well. Another issue that's common is pulling on a lead. I have to say my dog Bailey, I tried. I feel like I tried everything. He just
pulled. Yeah. Oh, it's so stressful, isn't it when you're just wanting to have a nice walk and you feel like your shoulders gonna be dislocated out of its socket, isn't it?
Right, and the dogs like, I mean, the noises that Bailey would make were a horror show, literally choking sound. And he was a maniac on the leash it was when you go out, obviously, his
dog still needs a walk, doesn't it. So have to leave. So you have your training, lead dogs aren't stupid, they'll know the difference. You just general walking lead, and then take your training lead your bumbag clicker, however you'd like to train your dog, because we only want to be doing short bursts of training, you know, the dogs still need to walk. And then. So you put your training lead on? That's training time, five minutes, 10 minutes, and then take it off and put you normally don't. And then yeah, Michael. And so basically old school methods of training were very much like check your dog choke chain, you know, check it to the side, you know, to correct the behavior? Yes, you'll probably see results with that. Probably a lot quicker than you will with positive training. But you know, is that the right way we should be training our dog, you know, you're not getting them to solve a problem. They're just thinking, Oh, my gosh, if I pull something really horrible happens to me, you know? So and also looking at you thinking, oh, gosh, you know, why is mum doing that? That's absolutely all you've got to think of it. Like if you're at school, and you were learning to read, for instance, learning to write and you kept spelling a word wrong, and a teacher came over and was encouraging you. Yes, that'd be lovely. And you're trying to take and you'd have a really positive association, and you would get there. But if your teacher kept comb coming over and smacking your knuckles, oh my gosh, you would, you know, you'd probably spell it correctly, but you would hate going to school. And you certainly wouldn't look at your teacher with any sort of, you know, admiration or respect, would you? So why?
Good analogy. Yeah,
it's really important to remember that though, when, you know, when you see people yanking the dogs around and things like that, that, you know, they must be thinking, gosh, you know, we're meant to be having this positive, mutual respect for each other and they're like, Oh, you're just breaking it. You know?
This isn't sad. Now, what do you recommend them because I see dogs with thoughts. Some people say oh, you should use a harness, you should use a slip, what is it called?
The slip? Your harness is a great, even a normal car and lead but what we want to be doing is basically first thing actually It's my dogs is to look at me. So I will stand with my dogs in front of me hi hi rewards so cheese, ham, whatever their favorite like little tiny morsels as well there, we don't want to be feeding them a whole meal, just tiniest morsels. And then you can put it up to the eye and I first teach my dogs to look at me. And so I've got that focus with them. And that's a really good way also for distracting dogs when you're out and about if they're a reactive dog to keep their focus on you all the time and not be focusing over what's going on in the field over in the corner. So first of all, we need to get them focused on us. And so by, you know, if they're not food motivated their favorite toy that only comes out at training times, or if they work for love and praise. And that's wonderful. But I find you know, meat is the way forward especially cooked, deliver my dogs scope and honors for cooks deliver. And then I have my treat pouch as well. On one side, I have my lead crossing over me in front of me. And so once I've got the dogs focus, we're literally raining ham down from the sky, as we walk in praising them. In shortfall, you've got to keep doing that. It's like feed step, feed step feed step. And then slowly we can increase the duration that we're feeding our dogs in between, obviously, when we're trying to get the dogs to heal, yeah. Again, you're not going to achieve it on one or two walks, it's going to take a lot of time and a lot of patience. That's why it's always handy just to take your training, lead any pouch out and just do five minutes on every walk. So you can get your dog to heal. And then once they're stepping where you want them to we can introduce the word heal, and the praise price for that. Yeah.
All right, I'm gonna jump to barking because we have huge windows upstairs in our living room, which is fabulous. But we also live in a woodsy area. So there's squirrels and deer sometimes and the dogs go nuts. I know not to yell, because that just makes it well.
You just sound like you're barking too, don't you? Yes, exactly.
But then I just don't know what to do. Well, I do now I read your book, but tell us what,
it's a distraction. It's just all about distraction, the dogs will bark, we have to assume that there is going to be elements of barking if you've got a dog, you know. And you've got to think from a dog's point of view as well. It's a bargain when the doorbell goes, the majority of the time my doorbell goes, it's a delivery person, you know? So you've got to think the doorbell goes Knock, knock, knock, here's a parcel for you dogs go. And the guy's like, Okay, thank you so much. And then off he goes the dogs thinking, great, wonderful. That worked. Excellent. I'll do that again next time, because that's what's happening more often than not, and this is really instilling this behavior in our dogs, that she you know, to guard bark, you know, and then the person goes away. So, this is this is a problem, obviously, that we have in our houses. So what we want to do is try and distract our dogs and we can do this by intercepting a doorbell getting a friend to help you. And, you know, again, finding that moment where the doorbell goes, you know, squirrels it's trickier because I'm gonna I'm not gonna lie my dogs go bananas when they see a squirrel in the garden. absolute pure rage. And, and so being honest, you know, because we're not all perfect. So we don't hold out perfect dogs, they are their own individual personalities. I've not got a grip on the not going visit for the squirrel yet because that's just but I have on the doorbell. So the doorbell goes, obviously I'll get the door. But what I don't want that when I said, okay, okay, I've got it, I don't want my dogs to carry on and carry on and carry on for 510 minutes. So I obviously have to do lots of practicing whether somebody's actually not at the door. Otherwise, you know, the person will probably assume nobody's in stand in front of my dogs distract them, I normally get some treats and scatter them on the floor. Or I'll put lick mat down trying to distract them away from the behavior, and then praise them for that, rather than obviously allowing them to bark I used to actually do with my dog. And I taught her how to bark on cue, but I'd also be able to tell her to quiet on cue. So that was actually really quite helpful with her because yeah, I want my eldest people could do it as well. I seem to run out of time in my life to try my other dogs to do that with having such small children. But no, they were very good, obviously, because she can speak speak speak, but being able to teach her to speak and then be quiet. Really, I found that very helpful. Because she used to do that in her general obedience training, that she would bark obviously and then I wouldn't be able to to teach her to be quiet and then obviously be able to reward for that. And then good girl and then yeah. And then also it's really good also to have a bed area that they have in the kitchen and teach them to settle. So okay, yeah, that's the door. Now I just want you to go, Yeah, I've heard you. Let's just go settle and then you can get a car or something and go put it on the door and obviously teach them to go settle on the door, through repetition and practice because everything is just repetition, things like this, again, reiterating that nothing is going to be a one time fix situation. It's going to take consistency and repetition. And then obviously before long, it will become a learned behavior that this is what they do. They'll probably Bark Bark Bark and then go and sit in the bed and look at you for a treat. That's you know, that's what should happen.
Yeah, I gotta do I can't believe I'm confessing this. Oh, First so
I confess that my dogs are a little bit outspoken. So go ahead.
Well, okay, so that my dogs love everybody, and they get so excited to see anyone who comes to the door. So let's say there's a repair guy coming I'll open the dogs are barking, I'll open the door and go do you are you okay? With dogs mine are friendly and they'll he'll go okay. So I opened the door and the dogs, you know, kiss them and then they just That's it. They just go back and do their thing. But then I'm teaching them they can say Hi, what's going to happen? No one's ever said no, I don't like dogs. So that's gonna happen.
That's absolutely fine. I mean, it's your house your rules you do you this just because you know, something that I do my house generally doesn't mean that that's why I've had to instill it a lot with my because I've got four dogs. It's a lot. My children have little friends and cousins and lots of little people coming in and out of my house you see a lot. And even though my dogs are very friendly, they jump up because I allow them to jump up. I'm more than happy with my dogs jumping up. That's a rule in my house. I'm absolutely fine. Because they're so tiny. Right? Exactly. It's like how are they going to greet me like if they have to stand on their on their little four paws when they're about five centimeters high. So I That's a rule with me. My Doberman, like, did teach her not to jump up. But yeah, absolutely. I allowed that's, that's my rule. But obviously, when little people come around, it's quite a lot. It's quite hectic. Because like your dogs, my dogs are very, very happy and eager to say hi to everybody. So what I tend to do is I'll put them in the kitchen, or I'll put them in a utility when I go and answer the door. And so that's just something that I've always done, because that works for my household. But that doesn't necessarily mean you have to do that for your household, your dog your rules, you know, whatever works for you.
True. Yeah, that's true. Well, it has made it easier because then it's like and then they like to see the people and neither one of them jump. And in the book. You do have dog etiquette. You have etiquette around Yeah, food. Yeah, jumping snatching food. Begging at the table is so funny. I remember like 23 years ago, we were at a friend's house and they had a black lab and our chocolate lab. And it happened so fast. There was a huge block of bread on the table. I mean, huge. This dog jumped up and in one Gulf the whole thing was going
well actually, it happened just tonight with my old girl. She's 13 and a half she stole Yeah, my my son had a little ice ice cream in his hand. And she's like a I say that she's a poodle in a Labradors coat. Because she is eternally hungry. And and she did she she's she's not really done this and yet she jumped up and snatched the ice cream straight out of a three year old town and obviously in she crying you know that's my husband trying to because obviously it's true. It was one of those magnums that's covered in chocolate sees they're like running around Ghana trying to get it off it. So you know, our house is equally chaotic. But the baking at the table. Yeah, my Dobby used to sit there and she'd have literal shoe laces hanging out of her mouth just watching. He just looked over her be like this. This is very awkward to go do that. And I have actually come down when the kids have left the table because they've left the meals you know, and just you know, it's it's chaotic at nighttime. Just want to get them up for a bath. And you know, we've just had the plates on the table come down and that same 13 year old Labrador, not Labrador, poodle is stood by naman, she's got arthritis, she's on you move glucosamine, and she can't even jump up on the sofa anymore. She's on the middle of the dining room table. It's amazing
what they can do for food. Now you have done television, you've been a judge, what was that experience? Tell us a little bit about that what you did and what that experience was like, I
mean, the production I did with BBC One, which is our number one, channel one in the UK was pretty nervous. Like, I don't think any of us knew where we went into start the program, how big a production it was. And this is even coming out of lockdown one as well. So we were one of the first shows to go into production. So this is with quite a reduced number of people because of COVID. It was crazy. I never when you watch programs like that you do not realize the amount of work and the amount of people you know when you see these reams of people that come up after the end of a show, you know who was involved. You know, they're all that is absolutely crazy. So, but what an experience, everyone was just such a delight. And I think we were all joined together with this mutual admiration for dogs. It really was a celebration of dogs so and I mean, you know what it's like when dog people get together. Yeah, it was basically like that for one whole month.
Tell us the name of the show.
It was called pooch Perfect. Oh, so cute. It's actually been rerun in England on BBC Two at the moment on a Saturday morning at 10am. So if anyone's in the UK, you can watch it and probably catch it up on BBC iPlayer as well. Can we watch it here in America? If you You have a VPN? I reckon you could. Yeah.
Okay. All right, I gotta, I gotta find that for sure. Verity, there's so much in the book that we didn't get to it is really, really great. And you have such a great personality. It is happy dog happy you a positive guide to a joyful relationship with your dog. Now tell us always we can find you. But also, is there anything that you want to add that we didn't get to today, and I hope you'll come back because we have a lot of fun.
Yeah, brilliant. And, like you're saying, We've got so much more to discuss, because the book very much is a manual for your whole dog's life from getting a puppy choosing a dog making the right steps all the way through to old age. And obviously, how caring for your dog is different during old age and the sort of changes we can make around our home dietary requirements. And also, one thing that's not discussed a lot is obviously the grieving process. And, you know, and what it's like at the end of the dog's life, which I think we should all try and prepare ourselves for, because it's very hard. And you know, and it's tough. It's really tough on us, and obviously, the other pets in our house as well. But, you know, that's, that's, I'll try and end on a positive note. It's really as a dog care journal for your whole life with your dog. And say, it's like a self sort of a helpful guide for you, as well as your dog, and how we can mutually benefit each other in this world. You know, how dogs help us so much, and how we can help them so much. So that's my main takeaways. I think it's like a book probably like no other you've written before.
Fabulous. Thank you. Yeah, I really, really, and I can keep going back to it, which is so great. Yeah. And
I've tried to make it. And yeah, I've tried to make it really easy reading leaves, you probably hear my personality when I've you know, when I but when you read it, it's full of like little tails, and I very much written it like I speak. So you know, don't just like that.
Oh, no. Are you kidding me? That's what makes it so great. Oh, it's really fun. Yeah. And
it's not too in depth. I know a lot of the dog manuals I've got they're a bit like, you know, I'm going cross eyed, reading them sometimes, like, you're losing me with these big words. And you know, oh, my goodness, and the science and you know, so it's very much a book for everybody.
Yeah, it really is. And how do we find you very and all your great work?
Oh, thank you. And so I'm on Instagram at Verity Hardcastle. Tick tock, a birdie. Hardcastle. And the same on Facebook, I have a Facebook page, which is very to have customer as well. So I'd absolutely love it if you gave me a follow and even buy the book. I think you can buy it on Amazon. Obviously in the UK. You can get it from WH Smith. Just give it a Google. There's loads of different places you can buy it from.
Oh, that's great. Well, this was super fun. I really enjoyed having you and I hope you'll come back. You're always welcome here. I say my doggie door is always open. I don't really have a doggie door. So I want to get it. That's a whole nother conversation. I use it good to have a doggie door before you go. What do you think about doggy doors?
Sir? I think obviously, there's a safety aspect with the size of your dogs. Oh, that's true. Yeah. So I used to I've always had cats as well. So my last cat died about a year and a half ago. And we got rid of the cat flaps. And I'm not gonna lie. I'm absolutely delighted the cat flaps are gone. Because, again, it's my old dog Lily. She's so mischievous. She used to be able to punch away through any cat flap. She's a miniature poodle. So she's slightly bigger than Gigi, my toy poodle. She'd be able to get out of any cat flap. And so it just became a bit of a nightmare having the cat flaps because all my poodles could fit through them. But like you were saying they'd be in and out, you know, be there at one in the morning. What's that noise? I'm sure I can hear a dog and Lily is broken out. Like you were saying she'd be stood in the garden. I have to be super careful as well because we've got Fox litter of foxes next door in next door's garden but obviously I'm quite terrified because my my small dogs I like small snacks and I'm not quite sure whether Yeah.
Oh my god. Yeah. The other day. I was walking the dogs and there was this field where I let them sniffer I take them off leash and because they're good, they come and called and stuff. The blue saw a coyote I really rafter it. And I was
terrified because they do take dogs don't
they? Yeah, but I mean blues thick. But he's not uh, even though he's you know people think Pitzer like you sir but no, he's a big baby. He'll just but still he was just like, who was that? And he just run? Oh, that like five to 10 minutes. I was just terrified that he was getting eaten by a coyote but we have we see him walking down the street to free and foxes to at least a few times a year. Yeah, so we
get a lot of foxes in England. It's you know, urban foxes, especially since they were building on all our countryside. You know, they have to coexist with us, don't they? So yeah, next door neighbor's under their shed this illiterate Fox babies and they come out to play at about 10 o'clock every night. So we just have to make sure that my dogs aren't out in the garden then. But we'll say you know, rather than than doggy door. I've got doggy doorbells and they're like slick Are you bells on a long rope which I've tied to my utility door and my top my dogs just to knock them when they want to go out so I can just be busy cooking in the kitchen and now I know one of them wants to go out because they'll go and knock the doorbells and then they'll turn around and look at me like can you get outside yeah which is just fabulous because you know they can let me know now when they want to go outside so I'm just like a personal door mind and alpha for everyone in my house is opening and closing doors all day long.
I know when the weather is super hot yeah, blue is loves the sun but only for like 10 minutes at a time. So the entire day it'll be like 10 minutes and 10 minutes out 10 minutes and it's like oh my goodness. Anyway, severity you have to come back because we'll just keep on chatting. But everybody keep coming back to dogeared rate review, subscribe, and be sure to check out yum woof and one Earth body care is another new sponsor because not only do they have great body care for your dog selves and stuff for their paws and the wonderful dog shampoo but they also have great stuff for people as well. And I'm loving it so and everybody also listened to health power and just keep coming back. Thanks so much.