The Science of Making Pets Happy: Webinar Series

The Science of Making Pets Happy

The OHS Presents… Zazie Todd, PhD!

Zazie Todd, PhD, loves nothing better than helping people with their pets. She is the award-winning author of Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy and Purr: The Science of Making Your Cat Happy. Todd writes about how to have happier pets at her blog, Companion Animal Psychology, and in her newsletter The Pawsitive Post. Her work has appeared in Modern Dog, Modern Cat, Inside Your Dog’s Mind, and Pacific Standard. Through her business, Blue Mountain Animal Behaviour, she helps people resolve issues with their pets. She has a PhD in Psychology, is an honours graduate of the prestigious Academy for Dog Trainers, and has an Advanced Certificate of Feline Behaviour (with Distinction) from International Cat Care. Originally from the UK, she lives in Maple Ridge, BC, with her husband, one dog, and two cats.

Zazie presented four specialty webinars in February and March of 2022:

TIPS AND TRICKS TO MAKING DOGS HAPPY

HOW TO PREVENT COMMON BEHAVIOUR ISSUES IN DOGS

TIPS AND TRICKS TO MAKING CATS HAPPY

HOW TO PREVENT COMMON BEHAVIOUR ISSUES IN CATS

For more information about specialty seminars, email programs@ottawahumane.ca or call 613-725-3166 ext. 298.

Tips and Tricks for Making Dogs Happy:

Learn how to make your dog happier, less likely to have behaviour issues, and more likely to have a great relationship with you! In this webinar, Zazie Todd will share her top tips to improve the human-animal bond—and explain the fun science that backs them up. We’ll look at ideas for training and enrichment that you can try with your canine best friend (and how to get the difficulty level right). We’ll look at just how important you are to your dog and consider why you sometimes need to advocate for them. And along the way, there will be the chance to practice reading dogs’ body language.

The tips will be relevant for all dogs, from puppies to seniors. And there will be time at the end for your questions.

Key Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the main ways to train dogs (and appreciate dogs’ sensitivity to the quality of rewards)
  • Practice recognizing dogs’ body language signals
  • Understand the importance of giving dogs choices (when possible)
  • Develop ideas for easy enrichment activities
large black dog laying on couch beside person on a laptop.

HOW TO PREVENT AND RESOLVE COMMON BEHAVIOUR ISSUES IN DOGS

Behaviour issues are surprisingly common in dogs, and this webinar will be full of tips on how to prevent them in the first place and cope with them when they occur. We’ll start with some general tips to use when your dog has a behaviour issue, including management tips to help make a difference right away. Then we’ll focus on two common issues: fear and reactivity. We’ll look at how to help dogs feel safe, how to use training and management to improve the situation, and how to avoid the common mistakes that people make. And because these issues can be difficult for the person too, we’ll look at how to keep track of progress, develop your own skills, make appropriate decisions—and know what to say if things get embarrassing.

Key Learning Objectives:

  • General tips for dealing with behaviour issues in dogs
  • Understand the training techniques that can help fearful and reactive dogs
  • Develop a plan for helping a fearful dog
  • Dealing with reactive dogs

Tips and Tricks for Making Cats Happy:

Learn how to make your cat happier, less likely to have behaviour issues, and more likely to have a great relationship with you! In this webinar, Zazie Todd will share her top tips to improve the human-feline bond—and explain the fun science that backs them up. The environment is a big deal to cats and we’ll look at easy ways to set your house up just right for them (including those all-important scratching posts). We’ll look at the best ways to provide enrichment, the kinds of toys your cat would like, and why it’s so important to make time to play with them every day. We’ll also look at how to train cats, and the difference it makes to vet visits when you teach your cat to like going in their carrier.

Key Learning Objectives:

  • Describe five features of the environment that matter to your cat and how to apply them to your home
  • Understand the importance of play and the best ways to engage your cat in play
  • Develop an enrichment plan for your kitty including food puzzle toys, play, and scent-based activities
  • Explain the best ways to train cats—and how to help them learn to like their cat carrier
Cat sleeping with a hand petting her forehead

HOW TO PREVENT AND RESOLVE COMMON BEHAVIOUR ISSUES IN CATS

In this webinar, you’ll learn about some common behavior issues in cats. We’ll begin with general tips for recognizing, preventing and dealing with behaviour issues. Then we’ll focus on social behaviour in cats and how to help them get along better with you and with other cats or dogs in the home. The cat’s background and history influence their social behaviour with cats and other species (like us), and experiences as a kitten are very important to later sociability. Changes to the environment and the ways we manage introductions can make a big difference, so we’ll look at how to set things up before introducing your cat to a new pet. There will be the chance to practice reading feline body language and learn to recognize the signs when your cat has had enough of petting.

Key Learning Objectives:

  • Develop general principles for reducing stress in cats
  • Recognize the signs that often precede petting-related aggression and how to respond
  • Understand how to help cats get along better with each other in a multi-cat home
  • Learn how to introduce cats to dogs