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September 2021: Issue 69

A Podcast of this issue of BARKS News will soon be available here.

PPG Announces Corporate Partnership with Zigzag Puppy Training App


PPG has announced a new corporate partnership with Zigzag, an all-in-one puppy training app designed to help puppy parents teach their pups core life skills using positive reinforcement-based methodology.

As part of the new partnership, the PPG Canine Committee will provide technical support to help users with app navigation and FAQs. In cases where additional support from a trainer or behavior consultant is requested or needed, the puppy owner will be referred to the 
PPG Member Directory to help them find a professional in their area.

Phase 2 of the corporate partnership will be rolled out in the coming weeks. During this phase, the app will be made available to PPG members for FREE, along with a member affiliate program. This will enable PPG member users to refer their clients to the app as a support tool for their own training programs and curriculums.

PPG president Niki Tudge hosted 
Zigzag head of program Lorna Winter and PPG Canine Committee chair Judy Luther in a live discussion, now available as a BARKS Podcast, on September 3, 2021 where they discussed PPG's support role for the app and how PPG members can benefit from using it, as well as discuss the many advantages for puppies and their owners.

Read full press release.

PPG Launches ‘Horses with Voices’ Initiative

PPG has launched its Horses with Voices initiative, the primary aim of which is to improve companion equid welfare by educating and empowering owners to commit to a higher standard of care for all species, from stabling practices to training practices and more.

Horses with Voices takes the format of a seven-point pledge whereby owners, guardians and caretakers commit to advocating for their equid companions while striving to create a harmonious and equal partnership with them. Each individual point is then broken out into a supporting document that provides further details and guidance.

The Pledge incorporates the following points, or topics:

1.      Ongoing Education: A commitment to learn more about equine behavior so owners can better understand their equid’s communications via body language, vocalizations and facial expression.  

2.      Training Methods: A promise to only use teaching methods that promote an animal’s physical and emotional well-being and are based on the latest scientific behavioral research.

3.      Interactions: An understanding that equids are sentient beings who form close bonds with their human partners.

4.      Empowerment: A focus on communication, including preference and consent testing.

5.      Environment: An awareness of the need to fulfill each animal’s species-specific needs, including the freedom to graze, play, and move around, access to other equids as friends, and continual access to foraging.

6.      Social Behavior: An understanding of equine emotions and their underlying impact on each individual animal’s observable behavior.

7.      Responsibility: A commitment to advocate for their equid companions, ensuring their individual and unique needs are met. 

Coming soon - Pledge Implementation Support Tools – watch this space!

Read full press release

PPG Advocacy Panel Holds First Event

PPG’s Advocacy Panel held its first virtual event last month, featuring a host of experts coming together to discuss How to Best Advocate for Positive Reinforcement Training. In case you weren’t able to make it for the live event, we recorded it and released it as a podcast: Listen to our BARKS Podcast with the PPG Advocacy Panel: Discussion #1.

The Advocacy Panel’s key mission to support pet guardian education and make it accessible to a wider audience. 

The next live panel discussion takes place on Friday September 24, 2021 at 3 p.m. (ET) on Zoom. The discussion topic will be How To Reach and Work With Your Local Veterinarians

Panel members to date include Dr. Laura Donaldson, Dr. Eduardo Fernandez, Dr. Robert Hewings, Judy Luther, Linda Michaels, Pat Miller, Helen Phillips, Kim Silver, Dr. Kristina Spaulding, Claire Staines, K. Holden Svirsky, Dr. Zazie Todd, Dr. Karolina Westlund, and Sam Wike. Sessions will be moderated by Shock-Free Coalition chairman Don Hanson and PPG president Niki Tudge, with discussion topics announced at least four weeks before the scheduled air date.

Zoom links will be posted on the Advocacy Panel website and announced on social media prior to each event.

Geek Week Presenters Are Talking!

PPG president Niki Tudge has been talking to some of the Geek Week presenters to find out what they’re going to be talking about at the event. Check them out here, and don’t forget to register for this great online educational event on November 13-17, 2021!

BARKS Podcast with Dr. Laura Donaldson, Simone Mueller, and Dr. Holly Tett.

BARKS Podcast with Irith Bloom, Paula Garber, Julie Naismith, Suzanne Clothier, and Dr. Simon Gadbois

BARKS Podcast Emily Tronetti, Tracey Lee Davis, Michael Shikashio, Rain Jordan, and Nancy Tucker

Geek Week 2021 Features:

-        More than 90 events with live Q&A sessions.

-        Educational content streaming 24 hours a day over 5 days.

-        Academic, Behavior and Consulting tracks – Learn your ABCs.

-        70 top notch, internationally renowned speakers.

-        28 academics, 29 behavior experts and 13 consulting specialists.

-        Virtual “Geeked-Up” Cocktail Party – Get fancy, network, and win prizes.

-        Exhibitor sessions – meet live and face-to-face.

-        Meet the authors – Get the details on what’s between the covers.

-        Discounted tickets available for shelters and rescues.

-        Payment plans - Pay over 4 months.

-        A range of sponsorship opportunities.

Check out the Geek Week Schedule and Session Descriptions and Geek Week Presenter Bios.

Register Today!

Project Trade Names July Ambassador

Congratulations to Daniel Antolec of Happy Buddha Dog Training LLC in Wisconsin, USA for exchanging one prong collar and who has been named Project Trade Ambassador for July 2021!

Project Trade is an international optin advocacy program for PPG members that promotes the use of forcefree training equipment by asking pet guardians to trade choke, prong and shock collars (and any other aversive devices). Sign up today!


PPG Dog Lounge

The PPG Dog Lounge is a virtual get together to discuss and share ideas, and each session will have a different topic. Join the PPG Dog Lounge Facebook group for more details. Note: You will be asked for a passcode when you first join. You can find the passcode here in the PPG members’ Facebook group.

The next PPG Dog Lounge will take place on Tuesday, September 28, 2021 and the discussion topic will be preparing for the holidays (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year, etc.).  

PPG Cat Lounge

The next PPG Cat Lounge will take place on Wednesday, September 22 at 7:30 p.m and the discussion topic will be “My one favorite thing to educate clients on is…,” “The one biggest lightbulb/a-ha moment of my cat career was…,” “If I could only tell cat owners one thing, it would be… Please check the PPG All About Cats Facebook group for further details and the link to join. 

      Upcoming Facebook Live Sessions

Chat Chuckle and Learn Sessions with PPG president Niki Tudge - save the dates!

Friday, September 17, 2021 / 3 p.m. (ET)

Niki Tudge chats with Emily Wolf, director of Summit Dog Rescue and creator of the podcast, Pod to the Rescue. Wolf, who has worked in rescue for over 15 years, will provide us with an inside look at her newly created podcast. Whether you are fostering or adopting, the podcast was created with the goal of providing the rescue community with up-to-date information on dogs' behavior and how to set your dog up for success.

Do you have something you’d like to share? Join Niki Tudge in one of our Facebook Live sessions! Just fill out this short form to get it scheduled and share your knowledge and experience with PPG members and supporters.

Check the PPG Facebook group for all live events and to join live sessions.


September BARKS Now Available Online


The September issue of BARKS is now available! Click here for immediate access if you are already a subscriber. If you’re not, sign up today for your free lifetime digital subscription and get instant access to the current issue, as well as all back issues, the option to print any issue on demand, and special subscriber benefits.

Read the September 2021 issue of BARKS.

BARKS from the Guild, PPG’s bimonthly official trade publication, is looking for new writers to contribute on both a regular and an ad hoc basis. BARKS is all about pet professionals sharing their individual knowledge and experience with others as we work to grow the force-free community and spread the message. BARKS’ online audience is comprised tens of thousands of pet professionals and pet guardians all over the world; being featured in BARKS is great for your business, for your fellow pet professionals, and for the clients and pets we serve! Please read the BARKS FAQs page for more information on submitting articles or contact the editor for further details.

BARKS Podcasts are now available on Anchor, from where you can select your preferred app to listen any time or download. Make sure you follow BARKS Podcasts on whichever app you choose so you can stay updated with new releases.

Latest Podcasts:

BARKS Podcast with Lorna Winter of Zigzag Puppy Training App (September 3, 2021).

BARKS Podcast with Geek Week Presenters Emily Tronetti, Tracey Lee Davis, Michael Shikashio, Rain Jordan, and Nancy Tucker (August 31, 2021).

BARKS Podcast with the PPG Advocacy Panel discussing How to Best Advocate for Positive Reinforcement Training (August 27, 2021).

BARKS Podcast with Geek Week Presenters Irith Bloom, Paula Garber, Julie Naismith, Suzanne Clothier, and Dr. Simon Gadbois (August 20, 2021).

BARKS Podcast with Geek Week Presenters Dr. Laura Donaldson, Simone Mueller, and Dr. Holly Tett (August 17, 2021).

BARKS News – August 2021 edition

Do you have something you’d like to share? Join Niki Tudge as a guest on one of our BARKS Podcasts! You too can share your knowledge and experience with PPG members and supporters!

Listen to earlier BARKS podcasts.

Upcoming Live Webinars:

Business Automation for Pet Professionals. Presented by Chinwe Onyeagoro

Friday, September 17 / 2 p.m. (ET)

Learning Together: The Science of Social Learning in Dogs. Presented by Dr. Kristina Spaulding

Wednesday, September 22 / 2 p.m. (ET)

Using Behavior Analysis to Analyze Behavior, Part II. Presented by Dr. Eduardo Fernandez

Thursday, September 30 / On-Demand - Access the Recording as Soon as You Register!

Who Controls the Training Session - You or the Animal? Presented by Dr. Karolina Westlund

Wednesday, October 6 / 2 p.m. (ET)

Inside the Matrix. Presented by Dr. Lisa Radosta

Monday, October 11 / 4 p.m. (ET)

Discounted Webinars:

PPG is offering the following selected webinars at a discount this month - each webinar is just $15:

Managing the Canine Arthritic - Those Free of Charge Additions That Really Count!

Dr. Hannah Capon

Positive Veterinary Visits

Dr. Amy Pike

The Good Enough Dog - A different approach to helping your clients, their dogs... and your business!

Nancy Tucker

Learn How to Work With the Fearful Dog

Susan Claire

Understand How You Can Bring A Feral Pup Into The Pet Home.

Yvette Van Veen


The PPG Archive holds over 4,000 articles, blogs and videos. Here are some of the most recent additions:

BARKS News August 2021 – PPG

Pet Professional Guild Announces Corporate Partnership with Zigzag Puppy Training AppPPG

Meet Your Match – ASPCA

Pet Ownership and Cardiovascular Risk - Glenn N. Levine, Karen Allen, Lynne T. Braun, Hayley E. Christian, Erika Friedmann, Kathryn A. Taubert, Sue Ann Thomas, Deborah L. Wells, and Richard A. Lange

Get Healthy, Get a Dog: The health benefits of canine companionship - Harvard Medical School

Let Your Dog Tell You If They Want to Go to a Dog Park- Marc Bekoff

Mangy mutt or furry friend? Anthropomorphism promotes animal welfare - Max E. Butterfield, Sarah E. Hill, Charles G. Lord

The Human-Avian Bond - Dr. Patricia K. Anderson

Providing Humans With Practical, Best Practice Handling Guidelines During Human-Cat Interactions Increases Cats' Affiliative Behaviour and Reduces Aggression and Signs of Conflict - Camilla Haywood, Lucia Ripari, Jo Puzzo, Rachel Foreman-Worsley and Lauren R. Finka

The effect of premature maternal separation on distress vocalizations and activity in kittens ( Felis catus) during a brief nest separation - Kira J Lowell, Mikel M Delgado, Sabrina L Mederos, Melissa J Bain

The Evolution of Animal Play, Emotions, and Social Morality: On Science, Theology, Spirituality, Personhood, and Love - Marc Bekoff

Development and Application of the Owner-Bird Relationship Scale (OBRS) to Assess the Relation of Humans to Their Pet Birds - Anne-Kathrin Burmeister, Katrin Drasch, Monika Rinder, Sebastian Prechsl, Andrea Peschel, Rüdiger Korbel and Nicole J. Saam

The impact of paternity and early socialisation on the development of cats' behaviour to people and novel objects - Sandra McCune

Low-Stress Horse Husbandry - Natalie DeFee Mendik

Creating An Enriching Life For Horses – Amber Barnes

Animal behaviours, post-human lives: everyday negotiations of the animal–human divide in pet-keeping - Rebekah Fox

P A R R O T do tell! Best Practices for Teaching Animals - Susan G. Friedman

View the complete PPG Archive.

New this month!

An Open Letter to Animal Shelters and Rescues – PPG

Pet Professional Guild Launches ‘Horses with Voices’ Initiative – PPG

It’s Not Them – It’s You - Andrea Carne

Great Expectations - Rachel Brix 

The Physical Effects of Harmful Training Devices - Niki Tudge and Susan Nilson

Switched Off?…Time to Switch Back In- Anna Bradley


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