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  Title Dr. Dodman's "The Well Adjusted Dog"
  Speaker Dr. Nicholas Dodman, DACVB
  Date(s) April 9-10, 2011
  Location Washington, DC (Arlington, VA)
  Fee $275 early-bird (by 3/15/11);
$325 standard
  CEUs 13 CEU's through CCPDT, IAABC, and AAVSB/RACE
  Host Organization Washington Animal Rescue League
  Contact Person Dr. LInda Breitman
  Contact Email
  Contact Phone 508 633-0676

  Description of Seminar/Conference

"The Well Adjusted Dog" 2 day dog seminar. For daily agenda, or to register, please visit and click on the events button.

This comprehensive seminar follows a one day cat seminar and includes the following topics:

Dominance versus Conflict Aggression

In this talk, Dr. Dodman will address the current controversy regarding the terms dominance and conflict used to describe owner-directed aggression. Clinical signs of both types of aggression will be described and differences between the two will be highlighted. Treatment of owner-directed aggression and the likely outcome of treatment measures will be addressed. Dominance struggles occurring between dogs in the same household, a condition known as sibling rivalry or alliance aggression will also be discussed, including itemization of a treatment regimen that has proven most successful.

Fear, Territorial, and Predatory Aggression

Dr. Dodman will address the role of fearfulness and territoriality in generating aggression to strangers both on and off the owner's property will be described with emphasis on the critical importance of early socialization even before vaccination is complete. Territorial aggression will be discussed as that arriving from fear or dominance or a combination of these two factors and different treatment approaches for both will be outlined. The natural behavior of predatory aggression will be featured toward the end of this talk and its unnatural expression when directed toward people and moving objects. Proper control and treatment of predatory aggression will be discussed.

Canine Fear-Based Behaviors featuring Diagnosis and Treatment of Separation Anxiety

The centerpiece of this presentation will involve a thorough discussion of separation anxiety in dogs, how it arises, when it arises, and what can be done about it. Other situational fears will also be addressed in this talk including fear of car travel and veterinary visits including treatment options for both of these latter conditions.

Canine Phobias/Post Traumatic Stress Disorders

Noise phobia, in particular, storm phobia, will be the main subject of this presentation. The enigma of how storm phobia arises and what factors are involved will be covered as will effective treatment options ranging from the use of various types of storm capes and wraps to environmental provisions including that of companionship.

Canine Compulsive Disorder - Spinning, Sucking, and Snapping

A leader in canine compulsive disorder research, Dr. Dodman will discuss the cause of these sometimes confusing and difficult to treat conditions. The latest findings regarding the genetic underpinning of compulsive disorders as well as environmental input and the expression of well-known canine compulsive disorders such as acral lick dermatitis and tail-chasing will be detailed. Treatment of the various compulsive disorders will also be described, including what can reasonably be expected in terms of results.

Medical Causes of Behavior Problems - Things You've Got to Know

Dr. Dodman firmly believes that trainers and veterinarians, alike, need to be aware of the possible role of medical conditions in generating what appear to be purely behavioral problems. In particular, he'll discuss what is and is not known about the all-to-common state of borderline hypothyroidism and its role in generating aggression, anxiety, and possibly even compulsive disorders. Various types of partial seizure disorder will be described also including how these problems can contribute to a rage-like state of aggression, fly-snapping, indiscriminate eating of inedible objects and even extreme and irrational fear. Canine cognitive dysfunction (canine Alzheimer's) will also be discussed, including how the diagnosis is made, what other diagnoses can be confused with it and how to manage it. Nocturnal separation anxiety occurring in older dogs will also be described as an entity and one in which must be recognized by all. Other known conditions, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, narcolepsy, liver problems, and kidney/bladder problems will also be mentioned.

Psychopharmacology of Behavior Problems - What works and why

Dr. Dodman will discuss how and why behavior modifying drugs work and will run through an assortment of them in terms of when they can be applied, how they can be applied, and what are reasonable expectations of their use. Specifically in this talk, pharmacological treatments to modify aggression, separation anxiety, and compulsive disorders, will be detailed, including specifics of titration of these medications and possible side effects.

Well-Adjusted Dogs - Seven Steps to Producing a Happy, Healthy, Well-Adjusted Dog

In this presentation, Dr. Dodman will go through the seven steps that he has enumerated as being something that all dog owners should know and apply in order to maximize the physical and psychological well-being of their dog. The steps include exercise and diet, clear communication, proper leadership, proper control, assuagement of fears, and provision of a suitable indoor and outdoor environment and activities. Each one of these subjects will be gone through in detail explaining why the various interventions work and the resulting improvement that can be achieved.

Case Presentations

Following each day of the formal presentations, Dr. Dodman will run through an assortment of case reports detailing dogs that he has seen, the diagnoses and difficulties in diagnoses that he has encountered and the final conclusions, treatment and result of treatment outcome. Cases include those of extreme owner-directed aggression, inexplicable fearfulness, attention-deficit disorder, complex partial seizures, and more.

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