Fearful Dogs’ Blog-A Retrospective

Thanks to Amy Burkert of GoPetFriendly.com & Edie Jarolim of Will My Dog Hate Me for giving me the opportunity for a bit of New Year’s reflection. Without further ado-

fearful dogs blog1. When d id you begin your blog?

I wrote the first blog post in December of 2008. OMG. 2008.

2. What was your original purpose for starting a blog?

I think that the title of the post says it all: How To Be Friends With A Fearful Dog

3. Is your current purpose the same?

Yes. My purpose remains to be to provide people with information about the most effective and humane ways to interact and work with fearful, shy and/or anxious dogs.

4. Do you blog on a schedule or as the spirit moves you?

I’m a ‘as the spirit moves me’ blogger. The spirit however seems to move me once or twice a week. I know media ‘experts’ will say to blog on a schedule but it just doesn’t happen for me. And if I do write a post I’m so excited about it I can’t wait and schedule it for a later date. I have to post it.

5. Are you generating income from your blog?

I do not have any paid advertising on the blog.

6. What do you like most about blogging in general and your blog in particular (bragging is good!)?

The pet bloggers’ community is a fabulous one and I have been thrilled to meet so many wonderful writers and animal advocates by being part of it.

I am ALWAYS thinking about how to help fearful dogs. I live in a rural area and spend most of my day with dogs, with few people around to share my thoughts and ideas with. And even if there are people around most of them are sick of hearing me talk about little else besides working with fearful dogs. I suspect even my dog training friends feel this way as well. Blogging gives me the opportunity to explore the ideas I have during my daily walks or training with dogs. It has sanctioned all of my ‘talking to myself’ behavior.

7. What do you like least?

Finding typos & grammatacal grammatical errors.

8. How do you see your blog changing or growing in 2011?

I am planning on moving the blog off of WordPress to its very own domain. Anyone with experience doing that, please let me know!

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48 comments so far

  1. melfr99 on

    Loved reading your answers Debbie. I had to laugh when you talked about people getting sick of hearing you talk about your work or thoughts on fearful dogs. I get the same thing. I have also given myself permission to talk to myself and I do it often. Who else can I talk to you when I work with dogs all day? ๐Ÿ™‚

    BTW – I am also looking to move my blog to my own domain in 2011.

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks Mel. I have to be careful because I notice that the dogs are paying attention to me as I talk to myself. Learned irrelevance can be a problem with both my dogs and husband these days. Though hearing loss may account for some of his behavior.

      Are you on wordpress as well?

      • melfr99 on

        I am on WordPress too. BTW – I hadn’t thought about learned irrelevance, but I think I may have hit saturation point with my mother. She seems to tune me out when I go into detail on my dog clients to dogs. LOL!

        And now I know why I didn’t find you right away when I was looking for some help with Daisy! You started your blog 2 months after I started Daisy’s and I had stopped looking by then. So glad I found you soon after that!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Oh yeah. Learned irrelevance is a big one. Ask any parent of a teenager!

      Fearfuldogs.com was up and running for a couple of years before the blog. After I wrote A Guide to Living with & Training a Fearful Dog I realized that I had more I wanted to say and couldn’t wait to put it into a book.

      We can celebrate our anniversaries together. My congratulations are a little late, but congratulations on your 2 years!

  2. Kristine on

    LOL. That was one of the reasons I started as well. So I would stop boring people with all my dog related stories and information. Apparently people the people I know just don’t care anymore. But I can never read enough!

    Good luck moving to your own domain. I’ve thought of this as well but the idea of figuring all that out gives me chills. Maybe I’ll be brave enough one day. I’d love to hear how the process goes for you.

    • fearfuldogs on

      I have the URL already and have been learning about building wordpress websites. At this point I could put up a brand new site for the blog, but I want to be able to move this original site and its contents along with it. There’s tons of great info out there for wordpress and a very supportive community to ask questions of so I’m hoping that once I decide to delve into it more I’ll have some hand holding along the way.

  3. Pup Fan on

    Great answers! Good luck with moving to your own domain. I’d love to do that at some point too – maybe your experience will inspire me! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. According to Gus on

    I enjoyed reading your answers. Good luck with the blog changes. I have my own domain but continue to use the WordPress.com platform. It takes a lot of the guesswork out of the blog!

  5. Amy@GoPetFriendly on

    Hi Debbie, and thanks for doing the challenge! As I’ve been hoping around today’s linky I had an idea I wanted to pass onto you. Have you ever considered combining your travel business with your dog training business? You could arrange pet friendly trips where people (or just women) could do dog training in the morning and have fun in the afternoon. I think it could be great!

    • fearfuldogs on

      I have thought of it Amy (great minds). It is something I’d like to do and looked into doing it around here in New England. There are some challenges and I decided that it was something I would prefer to work on with someone. So let me know if you are interested.

      Another of my businesses involves volunteering and have a trip to Puerto Rico ready to go for people interested in volunteering with a shelter/clinic, and doing some sun bathing on the side ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Amy@GoPetFriendly on

        How cool – I’m IN! Let’s talk about where we go from here. Rod and I are going to be our first clients!! (Assuming we decide to allow men to go, too.) ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Trixie, Lily and Sammy-Joe on

    Hi! We took the Pet Blogger Challenge too! We like your blog. We just interviewed a very shy/fearful dog who needs a home, on our blog, a few days ago!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks and nice to meet you. Be sure to share the fearfuldogs.com website with anyone who adopts a shy/fearful dog. I created the site just for them ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Deborah Flick on

    Hey Debbie, I made the move from the wordpress site to my own domain still using wordpress CMS. That was a long time ago, but I might be able to help. I did use tutorials from Lynda.com which were very helpful in making the transition.

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks Deborah, I just may be taking you up on that offer.

  8. kenzohw on

    Auch the typos, tell me about it. I did run on a schedule too, but feel the same: once I have something, I just have to publish it. Maybe a subject for next years challenge. Ok, now that we all have a schedule, how do we stick to it?

    I wouldn’t leave wordpress if possible, just have it point to your own domain name, like Deborah says. It will safe you for a lot of headache. Migration are a pain.

    • fearfuldogs on

      Even if the migration is using the same worpress platform? Do you have to upgrade in wordpress for bloggers to use your own domain?

  9. Nanny McFur on

    This is such a wonderful field to specialize in.

  10. hornblower on

    I’m here from the Pet Blogger Challenge but I realized I know your site!

    I fostered for quite some time a very fearful & shy maremma & got some good tips from your site. He’s since been adopted but I get to see him quite frequently for play dates & his owner continues to work with him to help him be all that he can be.

    I’m glad you’re writing on this very important topic!

  11. Ruff Toy Reviews on

    Hi there, stopping by on the blog hop… I’ve seen a lot of people who are interested in moving their blogs off hosted sites, so I might put together a tutorial on that and post it to my web design blog and put a copy on Ruff Toys too… stay tuned! It’s really not that hard, and there are some plugins that make it easy to port your content. I just need to see if getting your posts from the hosted site is doable. – Janet

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks for the offer of support in site moving Janet. Very cool of you to offer. Any suggestions regarding plug-ins welcome!

  12. Maggie on

    My favorite line: It has sanctioned all of my โ€˜talking to myselfโ€™ behavior. I feel like that a lot, too… that my friends, family, husband, lady in line behind me at Target, get super tired of me talking about dogs. Blogging is perfect for that. And your posts are always incredibly useful. (By the way, as I was scrolling down to leave a comment, I saw your comment about volunteering/sunbathing in Puerto Rico. Where do I sign up???)

    • fearfuldogs on

      It’s gratifying to know that I’m not just writing to myself as well! Maybe I’ll put that volunteering trip together for next winter in Puerto Rico. I’ll be heading down in April and will talk to the shelter about it. It would be nice wouldn’t it.

  13. Pamela on

    Glad you participated in the challenge. It’s been really great to learn so much from all these interesting bloggers.

    I switched my site from WP.com to my own hosted site a few months ago. I am no techie but I did find out some interesting things in the process. And some of the tutorials were just way over my head.

    Most of my links didn’t survive the transfer so I’m slowly fixing them (despite having a widget that is supposed to do it for me). And I learned some cool ideas for backing up.

    If you’re interested, I’d be happy to share some of the things you’ll need to watch out for. Just email me.

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks Pamela. Ah a widget. I’ll look for that and just may take you up on your offer. Great to meet you and appreciate you taking the time to write.

  14. Kim Clune on

    Debbie, I hope you continue talking to yourself for my sake. In fact, I need to peal back through previous posts to continue learning a thing or two. Thanks for sharing your questions and ideas, whether formed on a walk with dogs or during conversation you wish you were having with humans. We’re here for you. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thank you Kim and thanks for your great blog as well!

  15. royalcoonhounds on

    I enjoyed your answers! Although I’ll admit I haven’t read your blog I have read the rest of the fearfuldogs website. I adopted my Bella last year and I’m not sure she should have been up for adoption. We have been working on her anxiety for the last 9 months and she has come so far! I wouldn’t trade her for the world. Your website was a great resource when I was at my wits end early on with her.

    • fearfuldogs on

      I’m so glad to hear that fearfuldogs.com helped you discover that you were able to tap into more of your wit! Glad to hear Bella is doing better and I suspect you will continue to see improvements in her behavior.

  16. Jasmine on

    I think your blog has an awesome, important and unique purpose. I think it is very important for people to read your posts, as there are so many dogs out there suffering from fear and anxiety.

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks so much for your comment. Like you I believe people can be trained to think and behave differently.

      • Jasmine on

        This is Jana, btw, but as I set up Jasmine’s blog on wordpress, it’s not logging in as her ๐Ÿ™‚

      • fearfuldogs on

        I thought it was you!

  17. OMG 2008… ๐Ÿ˜‰ Very impressive!

    I have experience switching over to WordPress- it wasn’t that bad… GoDaddy (hosting service) made it really easy.

    Let me know if I can help!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks Shauna! I’ve switched over my websites to WordPress using a local webhost. I suppose it was easy enough, though I did end up having to pay for the energy put in at that end. I’d like to get all my existing posts & comments moved into the new site. Did you do that?

  18. Vicky on

    Hello! Nice to meet you. I have a shy-ish dog, so I think your blog will be an excellent addition to my reading material.

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks for stopping by Vicky and introducing yourself. Be sure to check out fearfuldogs.com for lots of information about handling shy-is dogs ๐Ÿ˜‰

  19. CindyLu on

    It sounds like you’re making very productive use of all your knowledge! Heck, why waste it on ears that have already heard it, anyway, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰ Looking forward to your posts! I know of a few fearful dog owners (is it the dog, or the owner? hmm) who could use your expertise!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanx cindylu & gr8 2 find out abt u as well. Fearful ppl need understanding as well ๐Ÿ˜‰

  20. Erica Kahunanui on

    I’ve been a long time fan of your site! Love what you do!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Well isn’t that a nice thing for you to say! And nice to think of a fan in Hawaii today after shoveling off over a foot of snow from the deck. And all the best to you in the good work that you do.

  21. Chandra on

    Happy to have found your blog through the Pet Bloggers Challenge. I enjoyed your Q&A! I volunteer at my local humane society and will definitely be reading your blog from now on for tips on spending time with the fearful dogs there. Thanks!

    -Chandra at Daley’s Dog Years

    • fearfuldogs on

      Nice to meet you as well and appreciate you commenting. I just finished up skiing with a chocolate lab that broke the trail for us most of the way. Are those yours on the blog?

      I’m glad that you find the blog useful for the work you’re doing at the HS. Be sure to check out fearfuldogs.com as well. There’s lots of info and ideas on it.

  22. kathi on

    Your blog and website are a great training resource. Glad to have found you through the Pet Bloggers Challenge!

    • fearfuldogs on

      Thanks Kathi! I was also not so successful getting through the list of great blogs so am glad you took the time to introduce yourself. I LOVE that photo of you (I assume) and Freya. That kind of enthusiasm and engagement always makes me smile.


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