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Event: Become a Dog Detective

Join Underdog’s Triumph and the Boone Area Humane Society (BAHS) for a children’s program called “Become a Dog Detective. Learn All About Dog Body Language” this Thursday, Sept 6th from 6 pm to approximately 7 pm at the BAHS. During this fun interactive session, children and their parents will learn all about how to read a dog’s body language and the many safe ways to interact with dogs. Afterwards, the kids will make fleece tug toys for the shelter animals; time permitting, they may also make one to take home for their own dog too! Please sign up at the following link to reserve your FREE spot as space is limited: You can also like and share our Facebook post out about the event to get the word out:

Surprisingly 77% of all bite case come from dogs the children know. These are often family pets or friends of the family who despite trying to tell their beloved humans they were feeling uncomfortable were pushed past their tolerance level and bit someone. Through this program, kids will learn safe ways to approach and interact with dogs (familiar and unfamiliar), and how to minimize their bite risk. Underdog’s Triumph will be presenting an interactive slide discussion where kids (and their parents) will learn to look for stress/calming signals that dogs display hen they first start to feel uncomfortable.

These key warning signs come before a dog growls and before they bite, and can help kids and parents know when their dog is telling them they need a break. Knowing and recognizing these signs can help kids avoid pushing their dogs or their friends dog past their tolerance level to where the dog feels a bite is their only hope. Take a sneak peek at Shelby’s photos below. These are of the same dog at two different times. Which of these two dogs is okay to pet?


Photo Credit From:


To a child (or other dog ethusaist) it is oftentimes hard to see the signs, especially when the child (or adult) is eager to meet a new friend. But looking closer at these two still photos you can pick out some of the signs.


Shelby (left): DO NOT PET

  • Ears are forward and alert,
  • Eyes are staring and intense,
  • Body is leaning forward causing the leash to go tight,
  • Mouth is closed.


Shelby (right): Okay to Pet, but please ask an adult first

  • Ears are back, relaxed, and flop naturally to the side
  • Eyes are soft and brow is relaxed,
  • Body is sitting, relaxed
  • Mouth is open slightly and relaxed



Through interactive discussions, the children (and parents) will learn how to see these signs and learn how to avoid pushing a dog past his or her tolerance. Parents will also be getting a handout discussion packet to take home to continue working with their children on recognizing these key signals.

If you and your child are interested in joining us, please use the link below to register for this free program:

If you are interested in hosting another event similar to or like this, please use our contact form here to set something up. We’re eager to work with other organizations, like schools and libraries to get this important information out there!

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Improve Your Dog Reading Skills – Part 1

This week we’re going to take a look at one of my favorite youtube trainers, Kristin Crestejo. She lives up in British Columbia in Canada and has a lovely youtube series on various dog topics. What I like most about her videos is that they include both some written/spoken descriptions of the behaviors as well as numerous videos and clips of dogs performing them. This is ideal because it is one thing for me to describe to you how a dog who licks his or he lips is showing a stress signal but another one entirely to be able to see it for yourself.

In part one of the dog series, Kristin Crestejo is going to go over the beginning signs of discomfort called “stress signals.” These are small little movements or behaviors that your dog begins to show when they are starting to feel uncomfortable in a situation. The ability to recognize these small signs has been priceless to me as a dog training and dog lover. I can see the moment in a training session when the dog starts to say “hey, you know, this is starting to be too much, I’d like a break” I can instantly ease up on whatever exercise we’re doing and see an immediate response in the dog. This type of two way communication between human and dog is what really solidifies the bond between the two diverse and unique species.

On the safety side of things, stress signals are the preliminary warning signs to a dog who bites or snaps at someone or something. They’re the “hey knock it off” signals that tell other dogs they’re uncomfortable. Most, well socialized, dogs can read this behavior instantly and respond. Most humans however cannot.

Videos like Kristin’s and blogs like this help to make humans become more aware of what their canine friends are trying to tell them. Watch part one of Kristin’s dog behavior blog below: