Dog Owner’s Academy is offering FREE water buckets to dog friendly establishments.

The saying “necessity is the mother of invention” rings true in our work with dogs.

Rather than simply teaching a list of commands, we believe in training dog owners on how to integrate their dogs into their daily lives. In fact, in 2012, I developed a groundbreaking approach to dog training that I called “Train as you live.”

We take our dog training services directly to our customers’ homes and even local establishments such as breweries, cafes, and restaurants, where they can practice training with their dogs in real-world scenarios. It was during these outings that we noticed a common issue: many dog-friendly establishments were unprepared to meet the needs of dog owners, specifically when it came to providing fresh water for their dogs.

To address this problem, we began distributing free, water buckets to local businesses, starting with Smelly Cat Coffeehouse in NoDa. The rest as they say was history…. You can still see some of the old buckets around town.

Over the past decade, Charlotte has become increasingly dog-friendly, with hundreds of new businesses now allowing pets. To ensure that our beloved dogs always have access to clean, fresh water, we’re now providing brand-new, blue water buckets to any business that welcomes our four-legged friends.

If you own or frequent a dog-friendly establishment and want to make sure that dogs there always have access to fresh water, please reach out to us. (Click here)

We believe that every dog deserves to be happy, healthy, and well-hydrated, and we’ll personally deliver one (or more!) of our blue water buckets to you at no cost.

Spaying Dogs| a guide without an agenda

Your dog’s health and happiness are your top priorities as a dog owner.

Spaying your dog is one of the most recommended method for supporting their health. Spaying is a simple surgical procedure that can reduce the risk of certain cancers and certain other health issues as well as prevent unwanted litters.

Listen  Zen of Dog Ownership Podcast :Spaying Dogs: Myths, Misconceptions, and What to Expect | discussion with Dr. Stanley of GoodVets Charlotte

What exactly is spaying?

Spaying is a surgical procedure that removes a female dog’s ovaries and uterus, rendering her infertile. The procedure is usually performed under general anesthesia and lasts about 30 minutes. Spaying female dogs can help prevent certain health problems, such as mammary tumors and uterine infections. Furthermore, spaying your dog helps to control the pet population and reduces the number of dogs in shelters.

Some Myths and Misconceptions

There are numerous myths and misconceptions about spaying dogs. One common misconception is that spaying will alter your dog’s personality. This is not correct! Spaying your dog will not change their personality or make them less protective. In fact, after being spayed, many dogs become more relaxed and affectionate. Another common misconception is that spaying is prohibitively expensive. While the procedure has a cost, the long-term benefits far outweigh the initial cost.

The Procedure

If you’re thinking about spaying your dog, you might be curious about the procedure. The first step is to discuss the details with your veterinarian. They will examine your dog to ensure that he or she is healthy enough for surgery and will provide you with instructions on how to prepare. Your dog will be sedated and the surgery will be performed on the day of the procedure. After the surgery, you’ll need to keep your dog from hard play/exercise during the recovery period, which usually lasts a few weeks.

Spaying your dog is an important part of being a responsible pet owner. But it is something each dog owner should decide for themselves and their dogs.

Don’t let misconceptions and myths about spaying keep you from doing what’s best for your dog. Consult your veterinarian about spaying your dog, and make sure to follow their instructions for a smooth recovery. By taking this step, you will be assisting in keeping your dog healthy and happy for many years to come.


dogs and children

Dogs and Children | Zen of Dog Ownership Podcast

Dogs can make great companions for children, but it’s important to consider a few things before bringing one into the family.

In this episode we are talking about Dogs and Children.

The Benefits of Having a Dog for Children

Companionship: Dogs can provide children with a loyal and loving friend who is always there to listen and play.
Increased physical activity: Taking care of a dog can help children get more exercise and stay active.
Improved social skills: Dogs can help children learn to communicate and interact with others.
Enhanced empathy and responsibility: Taking care of a dog can teach children to be more caring, responsible, and empathetic.

Choosing the Right Dog for Families with Children

Factors to consider, such as breed, size, and energy level: Some breeds are better suited for families with children, and it’s important to consider the dog’s size and energy level as well.
Importance of early socialization: Socializing the dog early on can help them feel comfortable and safe around children.
Preparing the dog for the arrival of a new baby: It’s important to help the dog adjust to changes in the family and establish new boundaries.

The Dog’s Perspective

A dog’s perception of children: Dogs may see children as smaller and less predictable, which can cause stress and anxiety.
Common behaviors and body language displayed by dogs around children: Understanding how dogs communicate can help prevent misunderstandings and potential conflicts.
Understanding and managing a dog’s stress and fear around children: It’s important to recognize signs of stress and fear in dogs and take steps to manage it.

 Safety Measures for Children and Dogs

Importance of supervising interactions: Children and dogs should always be supervised when together.
Teaching children appropriate behavior around dogs: Children should learn how to approach and interact with dogs in a safe and respectful way.
Training dogs to understand boundaries and commands: Dogs should be trained to understand and respond to commands that help establish boundaries and prevent potential conflicts.

Incorporating Dogs into Family Activities

Ideas for fun, dog-friendly outings: There are many activities that families can enjoy with their dogs, such as hiking, swimming, and playing in the park.
Encouraging bonding between children and dogs: Spending quality time together can help strengthen the bond between children and dogs.
Balancing the needs of both dogs and children: It’s important to consider the needs of both dogs and children when planning activities and setting boundaries.

Puppy smiling

Socializing Your Dog | and importance of dog socialization

Proper socialization is crucial for your puppy’s development. And can prevent behavior issues later in life. Socialization training involves exposing your puppy to different people, animals, environments, and experiences in a controlled and positive way.

Proper dog socialization is crucial for a well-adjusted and happy dog. It helps them become more confident, well-behaved and less likely to develop behavioral issues. Socialization training involves exposing your dog to different people, animals, environments, and experiences in a controlled and positive way.

Another important aspect of socialization training is exposing your dog to different types of people, including children, the elderly, and people with disabilities. This will help them become more comfortable around different types of people and reduce the likelihood of fear or aggression.

Make sure to include on your exposure plan different types of animals, such as cats, birds, and other small animals. This will help your dog learn to interact with other animals in a controlled and positive way. Not to mention prevent your dog from going nuts at the pet store.

It’s often overlooked but it’s crucial to expose your dog to different types of experiences too.

Such as car rides, visits to the vet, and trips to the groomer. These experiences can be stressful for some dogs, so it’s important to expose them to these types of experiences in a controlled and positive way.

Don’t forget to follow us on social media for more tips and tricks on dog ownership, and leave a review on your favorite podcast platform so more people can discover the Zen of Dog Ownership.

Cubicles Suck… Becoming a dog trainer is cool

Become a dog trainer. Work anywhere around the world

Are you ready to turn your passion for dogs into a career you’ll love?

At Dog Owner’s Academy, we know that starting your own business can be overwhelming, but we’re here to make it easy for you.

Becoming a dog trainer is not only a rewarding career, but it also offers the freedom and flexibility of being your own boss. Just imagine waking up every day excited to go to work, and being surrounded by people who love their dogs. That’s what being a dog trainer is all about!

Our comprehensive training program is designed for individuals who have a passion for dogs and want to turn that passion into a successful and fulfilling career. We will provide hands-on training, as well as ongoing support to ensure your success.

You don’t need to have previous experience as a dog trainer to join our program. We believe that anyone who is interested in starting their own business and becoming a dog trainer should have the opportunity to do so.

Our program covers a wide range of topics, including dog behavior, training techniques, business management, and marketing. By the end of the program, you will have the knowledge and skills necessary to start your own business and become a successful dog trainer.

But our support doesn’t end when the training is over. We’ll be with you every step of the way, providing ongoing support and resources to help you grow your business. From access to our network of successful dog trainers to marketing and business resources, we’ve got you covered.

At Dog Owner’s Academy, we are dedicated to helping you turn your passion for dogs into a successful and fulfilling career. The freedom and flexibility of being your own boss, combined with the joy of working with dogs every day, makes becoming a dog trainer the perfect career choice.

So why wait? Take the first step towards your dream career today and join Dog Owner’s Academy!

Contact us today to schedule your initial consult

Crate! An important dog training tool

Believe Me Crate is Your Friend

As dog training experts in Charlotte, we often get asked about the best tools and techniques for building a positive and rewarding relationship with our dogs.
One tool that we always recommend is the crate. Not only is the crate a convenient way to transport your puppy, it can also serve as a valuable tool for training and behavior modification.

The crate can provide a sense of security and comfort for your dog.
Just like humans, our dogs need their own space where they can retreat to when they need to relax or feel safe. The crate can serve as this space for your dog, giving them a place to go when they need to escape the chaos of the household or when they just want to take a nap.

In addition to providing a sense of security, the crate can also be a great training tool. When used properly, the crate can help your dog learn basic obedience commands such as “wait.” It is also a big help with potty training, as dogs are naturally clean creatures and will try to avoid soiling their sleeping area.

The crate can prevent destructive behavior in dogs, especially puppies, who have a lot of energy and can get into mischief if they don’t have a proper outlet for it. By confining them to the crate when you can’t directly supervise them, you can prevent them from chewing on furniture or getting into other trouble.

Finally, the crate can be a lifesaver in emergency situations. Whether you need to evacuate your home, deal with a medical issue, or face a natural disaster, the crate can provide a safe and secure place for your dog.

The crate is much more than just a place to put your dog when you can’t supervise them.
It is a valuable tool for training and behavior modification, providing security, comfort, and even protection for your dog. As a dog owner, it’s important to view the crate as a valuable resource that can benefit both you and your dog.

6 Safety Tips for Dogs During Winter

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As the colder weather approaches, it’s important to remember to take extra care of our dogs.

While dogs may have a thick coat of fur to keep them warm, they are still susceptible to the dangers of winter weather. From frostbite and hypothermia to icy sidewalks and toxic antifreeze, there are many potential hazards that pet owners need to be aware of.

Here are some tips for keeping your dog safe and comfortable during the winter months:



    • Keep your dog warm and dry

It’s important to keep your dog warm and dry during the winter months. This means providing them with a warm and dry place to sleep, such as a cozy bed or crate with a blanket or heating pad. It’s also a good idea to invest in a waterproof and insulated dog coat to help keep your pet warm and dry when they’re outside.


    • Limit your dog’s time outside

While it’s important for your dog to get plenty of exercise, it’s also important to limit their time outside in cold weather. Short bursts of exercise are fine, but prolonged exposure to the cold can be dangerous for dogs. If you do need to take your dog outside, try to do so during the warmer parts of the day and be sure to bundle them up in a warm coat or sweater.


    • Protect your dog’s paws

Your dog’s paws are vulnerable to the harsh winter elements, and can become dry, cracked, and painful if not properly protected. To protect your dog’s paws, consider using booties or paw wax to keep their paws moisturized and prevent cracking. It’s also a good idea to regularly check your dog’s paws for any cuts, abrasions, or foreign objects that may have gotten stuck in between their toes.

    • Keep an eye out for signs of hypothermia and frostbite

Dogs are susceptible to hypothermia and frostbite just like humans. Signs of hypothermia in dogs include shivering, lethargy, weakness, and difficulty breathing. If you suspect your dog is suffering from hypothermia, bring them inside immediately and warm them up slowly with a blanket or heating pad.

Frostbite is another concern in cold weather. Frostbite occurs when the skin and underlying tissues freeze due to exposure to cold temperatures. Signs of frostbite in dogs include pale or gray skin, coldness to the touch, and stiffness. If you suspect your dog has frostbite, bring them inside and warm them up slowly using warm water (not hot). Do not try to thaw frostbitten areas if they are still frozen, as this can cause additional damage.


    • Watch out for toxic substances

During the winter months, there are a number of toxic substances that can be dangerous for dogs. These include antifreeze, which has a sweet taste that dogs find appealing, but can be lethal if ingested. Keep all toxic substances out of reach of your dog and be sure to clean up any spills immediately.


    • Keep your dog’s fur trimmed

While a thick coat of fur can be a natural way for dogs to stay warm, it’s important to keep their fur trimmed to prevent matting and tangles. A matted coat can actually trap moisture against the skin, making your dog more susceptible to hypothermia. Regular grooming will help keep your dog’s coat healthy and free of tangles, and can also help prevent other winter-related health issues such as dry, itchy skin.




Dog Flu | How to keep your dog safe – and alive!

New highly contagious Dog flu is spreading like a wild fire.

Many animal hospitals are at capacity and asking their clients to delay non-emergency visits.

Many doggy daycares are voluntarily closing their doors -taking a direct financial hit- Just to help slow down the spread of this deadly disease.

We asked Dr. Samantha Stanley from Good-Vets Charlotte to educate our listeners about Dog flu and help spread the word about 

  • Safety of our dog population during this viral outbreak
  • How to prevent our dogs from getting sick
  • How to limit exposure
  • When to seek veterinary care… and much much more.



Good-Vets Charlotte

NC Dept. of Agriculture 

VEG Charlotte


Zen of Dog Ownership Podcast

by Dog Owner’s Academy

Be the owner your dog deserves™

Coping with the loss of a dog

Losing a dog is the most difficult day in the life of a dog owner. It can be hard to know how to cope with the loss of a pet, but there are many ways that you can process your grief and find peace.

Just know the loss of your dog may result in a variety of emotions: denial, guilt, anger, sadness, shock, or pain. To move forward, it is important to deal with these emotions following the death of your dog.

It is crucial to remember that people respond differently to the loss of a dog and any given person (including your) may experience all or none of these emotions. If multiple people live in your home, respect the feelings of other family members. Recognize that each family member may share a different level of bond with the pet, as well as grieve differently.


“Grief is like the ocean, it comes in waves, ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.”

– Vicki Harrison

Grief is a healthy and normal response to loss. Coping with grief is an individual journey of healing. What works for some, may not work for all. Grief can feel like being lost. The familiar things we relied on to live each day are gone. We must find new anchors or stabilizers along the way and learn a new way of relating to the world and people around us. This can be especially true when a companion pet was heavily integrated into our daily routines. It is common to replay the last moments of your dog’s life repeatedly in your mind, as a video playing the same scene over and over.

What can make the experience of pet loss different from other losses is that it is considered a form of disenfranchised grief. This means society still doesn’t recognize it as a ‘valid’ form of grief when compared to the loss of a human life, which means the social support one would normally expect during such a difficult time may not be as readily available. Your loss is valid and so is your grief.

No one can rush the process or provide a magic cure for grief. When grief is new, it is common
to feel exhausted: physically, emotionally and spiritually. Changes in appetite, sleeping patterns or health are frequently reported. Those who are grieving often describe feelings of being out of control, isolated and lonely. Things that seemed so important before now may seem trivial. Others may experience a sense of “life isn’t fair” or being in a tunnel or fog, while everyday life swirls around them.

All of these feelings are normal and part of the grieving process. Grief follows no organized plan, formula or schedule. You may start to feel better, and then feel as if a wave has hit you. There will be ups and downs in the process of grieving.

The purpose of healthy grieving is not to “get over” the death of a loved one, but to integrate the experience of loss into present life in a functional and healthy way. In this process, it is not unusual for certain memories of your dog to become blurred. This does not mean you are forgetting your dog or that your love is diminished. The truth is, you will always love this very special member of your family. The hope is, as time goes on, the feelings of sadness will become less difficult, not that you will never miss or forget your dog. Initially, you may be sad to think or talk about your loss. Eventually, the hope is that you will be able to reminisce and even smile or laugh with good memories.


Guilt is one of the most common emotions people experience after the death of their dog especially if they had to make the hard decision to put their dog down. It’s normal to find yourself thinking continuously about what you perceive you could have, should have, or would have done to prevent or postpone your pet’s death.

Some suggestions for coping with guilt include:

  • Be truthful with yourself about why you feel guilty.
  • Do a reality check. Most people assume that if they had done something differently, the outcome would have been better. It’s just as likely, however, that if you had done things differently, the outcome would have been the same.
  • Remember that you are human. No one is perfect.
  • Remember that all living things die. There is not always an answer to why bad things happen and you do not need someone or something to blame. Realize that sometimes you are powerless and you cannot control everything that happens to your loved ones. What you can control is how you choose to respond to the events in your life.
  • Some owners find it helpful to write an “apology letter” to their pet, expressing the feelings with which they are struggling.
  • Try talking to a trusted friend or an advisor about your feelings of guilt. Expressing your emotions in a safe non-judgmental space can help you feel, express, and process your feelings.

Healing your own way

One of the greatest healers is time. Time only heals if you allow yourself to grieve and let yourself feel the emotions that accompany your grief. Afterward, you will be able to make peace with your loss, start to heal and move forward.

Below you will find some practices to consider when in mourning:

  • Be kind to yourself. Grieving is an intensely personal process that you should take at your own pace.
  • Allow yourself to feel the pain of loss in a safe environment. Give yourself permission to cry. Avoid suppressing intense feelings, so you can heal and start to move forward.
  • Talk about your loss to those you trust will understand. This will help process your feelings and help you look at the unique relationship you had with your pet. This may guide you from a place of shock, denial and guilt to a place where you can start to process your grief.
  • If possible, avoid people or situations that may prove upsetting. Some people may have never experienced a very special relationship with a pet and may not understand what you’re going through. Minimize contact with those who you know will not understand your loss.
  • Read information on pet loss. There are many books and online resources that offer support when grieving.
  • Take care of yourself. Incorporate physical activities into your daily schedule to support your sleep and overall well-being. Walks are one of the best forms of exercise. If you have memories associated with walking your dog, take your walks at a different time and place initially. When you feel better you can go back to your previous routine, such as meeting with other pet owners with whom you used to chat.
  • Although you may feel some initial resistance, make time to visit friends and family. Try to go out more frequently and on a regular basis. You can still take memories with you and share them, if you choose.

This content is courtesy of The Ohio State University – Veterinary Medical Center. Honoring the Bond, Support for Animal Owners. To Learn more or to donate to this program please Visit OSU from this link.

Dog flu is spreading in Charlotte like a wild fire

Thousands of dogs in Charlotte area have already had it and it can progress into something more dangerous like pneumonia. Hospitals are reaching full capacity.

Veterinarians said that although dog owners are calling it kennel cough, it’s actually a ‘K-9 infectious respiratory disease complex,’ which is a combination of viruses that dogs can pick up at the same time

It’s airborne and easily spreads at dog daycares and kennels. If left untreated, it can quickly progress into something more dangerous. Vets are urging pet owners to do what they can to keep their dogs safe and know the signs and symptoms.

Even when treated, the cough can last four-to-six weeks, and dogs can spread it up to three weeks after they stop coughing.

The best thing you can do is keep your dogs home. Don’t put them out in social situations.

If you can avoid taking your dog to doggy daycare, dog bar, dog parks type of places you’ll reduce the risk exponentially.