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Sarah Kalnajs
Sarah Kalnajs

Sat, 20 Aug


Small Dogs, Big Labels

Sarah Kalnajs

Small Dogs, Big Labels

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Time & Location

20 Aug 2022, 9:00 am

Small Dogs, Big Labels


About the event

Little Dogs, Big Labels

From the very start of my career as a dog trainer and behaviourist, I’ve noticed that clients with small dogs are different. Unlike clients with medium and large-sized dogs, clients with small dogs rarely describe the actual problems that concern them. Instead, they almost always apply one of those stereotypical labels: if their little dog is reactive or aggressive, he has Little Big-Dog Syndrome, and if they can’t house-train him, he is Impossible to Train.

I’ve always had medium-sized dogs, including Shetland Sheepdogs and American Eskimos, but my clients’ small dogs piqued my curiosity. I finally got my first small dog in 2007, a six-week-old Pomeranian mix found in a rubbish bin. Today I have four: my original rubbish bin Pom, a Chihuahua, a Pomeranian-Chihuahua mix, and a Papillon.

I’ve learnt a lot from living with my small dogs and continued work with my clients’ small dogs. They have taught me where these dogs’ trainability and behaviour issues come from, the best ways to prevent these issues, and the best ways to work with them if they are already present.

This two-hour webinar will focus on toppling the myths about little dogs and will cover the training and behaviour modification strategies that work best for them and how they differ from those for larger dogs.

About Sarah Kalnajs

Sarah has been working with dogs professionally for over twenty years and is the owner of Blue Dog Training and Behavior in Madison, Wisconsin. She is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the CCPDT and a Certified Dog Behaviour Consultant through the IAABC. Sarah is on the Companion Animal Sciences Institute board, is recognised in the state of Wisconsin as an expert witness in dog training and behaviour, and has run a dog rescue organisation for over twenty years. Sarah graduated with honours from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, studied comparative cognition between dogs and dolphins through the Kewalo Basin Marine Mammal Laboratory in Honolulu, Hawaii, and was a member of the Lab’s humpback whale research team. Since the release of her Language of Dogs and Am I Safe video series (DVD and streaming), Sarah has given more than a hundred seminars across the U.S. and internationally to dog training organisations, veterinary schools, dog breed clubs, and rescue/shelter groups. Sarah and her husband, Andrew, an engineer, work with their six dogs to create training tools for professional trainers and dog owners. The most well-known of these tools is the Dog Safe Hands-Free Leash System.

Did you know that APDT Australia members can attend this event for FREE? Check your inbox or visit the member's Facebook page for your discount code for this event.


  • Sarah Kalnajs

    APDT August Monthly Chat: Small Dogs, Big Labels

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