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Questions that we will be answered in a future blog. AnimalSensibility will Make Heads and Tails of Your Canine Conundrums.

AnimalSensibility is the place to turn to for all of your dog training answers. Collectively, our staff has more than 75 years of extensive and comprehensive experience in dog training and behavior and of course, total dedication to dogs. We are active members of several professional organizations, regularly attend seminars and conferences and are happily obsessed with obtaining the most up-to-date training and behavior information available — and then passing it along to you. This blog is our opportunity to do that on a much larger scale. Our trainers will share new training techniques, case studies from the many classes and private lessons we conduct each week all over Chicagoland, stories from our time volunteering with rescues and shelters, as well as our experiences with our own dogs.


Colorado Dogs

I was on vacation last week in Vail, Colorado. Whenever I am on vacation I always look at the local dogs. One thing I noticed is how happy all the dogs looked in Vail. I don’t know if it was because they were in their element, being outside on the mountain and in the fresh […]

Continue Reading     |     June 5, 2014

Management Techniques, Part 3: Crates

In part three of my management series, I am going to talk about crates. Crates are a wonderful way to manage a dog. It also provides many dogs with a sense of comfort and a place they can call their own. Crates should be a place that your dog loves going to, so make sure […]

Continue Reading     |     March 25, 2014

Management Techniques, Part 2: Baby Gates

In Part 2 of my management series (you can read Part 1 here), I am going to talk about baby gates. Baby gates are another of my favorite ways to manage a dog. You can spend either a lot on fancy gates or very little on the basic baby gates that are sold just about […]

Continue Reading     |     February 20, 2014

Management Techniques, Part 1: Tethering

If you have ever taken one of our classes, you will hear us talk a lot about management. There are a lot of ways to manage your dog and help prevent bad behavior. In the next few blogs, I am going to discuss different tools and how they can be used in the house. Today, […]

Continue Reading     |     January 28, 2014

A New Baby and New Guilt

I gave birth to a little girl, Amelia, in September. Parenthood is everything people say it is and more. My husband and I couldn’t be more in love. We are adjusting to life as parents and along with that comes a lot of guilt. Bailey has been an only child for eight years. I’m sure […]

Continue Reading     |     January 3, 2014

Getting Your Dog Ready for Baby

I have had nothing but baby on my mind. I am due in two weeks, so my mind is consumed with getting everything ready. The nursery is complete, the car seat is installed, my hospital bag is packed, so I am feeling pretty good about everything. I am also feeling very good that I have […]

Continue Reading     |     September 6, 2013

Party Tips for a Dog’s Birthday Celebration

I have been to more dog birthday parties this year than I have ever been to. My dog, Bailey, turned eight this year, so we threw her a little party. But ours didn’t even compare to the other parties I attended. I was very impressed by the spreads that were presented and the amount of […]

Continue Reading     |     August 7, 2013

Game Time

The other night my husband and I were enjoying a quiet evening at home, when all of a sudden we heard cheering from our downstairs neighbors. My husband and I just looked over to each other and said “the Blackhawks must have won.” Our dog, Bailey, didn’t move from her spot on the floor. With […]

Continue Reading     |     July 3, 2013

How to Help your Dog with Change

There has been a lot of change going on in the Schneider household. Last month, I wrote about how my husband and I were in the middle of changing our den into a nursery and how our dog, Bailey, is not enjoying it. We have spent the last few weekends installing all the nursery furniture […]

Continue Reading     |     June 5, 2013

Change is Never Easy

My husband and I live in a small, one-bedroom condo and in order to make room for baby, we have to change our den into a nursery. So my husband and I have been busy the last few weekends boxing up some books and moving things around. This does not thrill our dog, Bailey. Bailey […]

Continue Reading     |     May 6, 2013

Faithful Friends

My husband and I recently went to London and spent some time at the wonderful British Museum. We were walking through the Greek and Roman section when I saw a sculpture titled “Molossian Hound”. It immediately caught my attention, because, well, it was a sculpture of a dog. I was particularly interested after reading the […]

Continue Reading     |     April 8, 2013

Bailey and Baby Make Too

My husband and I have some very exciting news to share: we are expecting our first child this September! We could not be happier about this news, I just don’t know how Bailey is going to take it. For seven years, Bailey has been an only child, and happily so. Bailey has had all of […]

Continue Reading     |     March 8, 2013

Lights, Camera, Action: Celebrity Dogs

This week, Barney, the former first dog, passed away. No matter what your political affiliation, you have to admit, he was a pretty cute dog. I always enjoyed seeing him on TV frolicking around the White House yard. His death got me thinking about celebrity dogs and the impact they can have on us. There […]

Continue Reading     |     February 11, 2013

Winter Gear

Now that the temperature has finally dropped, it’s time to think about winter. As we bundle up to go outside, we really need to make sure that our dogs are dressed appropriately. Now you might say, “why do I need to put a coat on my dog, he is already wearing a coat.” True, but […]

Continue Reading     |     January 9, 2013

European Dogs

Whenever I travel, I tend to observe not only people, but also dogs. My husband and I were in London and Paris in November for vacation. I love Europe! I also love European dogs. Not that American dogs aren’t great, but Europeans just have a different attitude about dogs. I observed a lot of dogs […]

Continue Reading     |     December 11, 2012

Do Dogs Vacation?

I love and need vacations. Vacation makes me feel refreshed and re-energized. Recently my husband and I went to Europe for a vacation and while we were gone, my parents watched our dog, Bailey. After I got back and heard about all the things that she did while we were gone, it got me thinking: […]

Continue Reading     |     November 28, 2012

The Dog Sitter’s List

My husband and I are going to Europe for a week and a half for our anniversary. As excited as we are about our travels, we hated the thought of leaving our dog, Bailey, for such a long time. Usually we have a friend watch Bailey while we are gone (and she does a wonderful […]

Continue Reading     |     November 9, 2012

The Energizer Conference

Last week was the annual conference for the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT). I, along with some of my colleagues from AnimalSense, attended the five day conference. This was my second year attending and just like last year, I felt I got a lot out of it. Not only did I get to meet […]

Continue Reading     |     October 29, 2012

Update on Bailey

Bailey and I went back to our vet today, and we had good news. Bailey no longer has any bladder stones and the tumor has shrunk a great deal! Needless to say, today is a good day. Bailey was diagnosed with bladder cancer in December 2011. Since then we have tried a few different medications, […]

Continue Reading     |     October 5, 2012

Step up to BAT

This past weekend, my fellow trainer Nicole Stewart and I went to a seminar on BAT (Behavior Adjustment Therapy) with Grisha Stewart. explains it as, “Behavior Adjustment Training, or BAT, rehabilitates dog reactivity by looking at why the dog is reactive and helping him or her meet his needs in other ways. In a […]

Continue Reading     |     September 26, 2012

Friends and Family

I love being a dog trainer, but I can sometimes find it hard to be one when I am around family or friends. Everybody has an opinion about dog training. How people handle and train their pets is a very personal thing for most, so it is very easy for people to get offended or […]

Continue Reading     |     September 5, 2012

Big Box Stores vs. Boutiques

I love to shop for my dog. I love looking for the best equipment and the best food and treats. Bailey is one spoiled pup! After years of shopping for my dog and helping clients find the best products for their own dogs, I have have formed some opinions about big box stores and boutiques. […]

Continue Reading     |     August 29, 2012

Bowled Over

Dog bowls are a necessity, but there is no need to sacrifice safety for style. You can have both! There are all kinds of dog bowls out there, but the most common are plastic, ceramic and stainless steel. When looking for a stylish bowl that will fit in with your home’s decor, most people think […]

Continue Reading     |     August 8, 2012

A Holistic Approach

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about switching Bailey over to a more holistic lifestyle. I am a big believer in feeding natural, organic food and treats, but for whatever reason, I never thought much about consulting with a holistic vet. Ever since Bailey was diagnosed with bladder cancer, I have been analyzing everything […]

Continue Reading     |     July 27, 2012

Quenching Canine Thirst

I love to stay on top of the new trends in the pet industry. Recently, I read about a new trend that I am a little surprised is catching on… dog water. Yep, you read that correctly, dog water. If you are anything like me, you probably think tap water is perfectly okay to give […]

Continue Reading     |     July 9, 2012

On the Road Again

Summer is the season of travel, and I love to travel with my dog. Vacation just isn’t a vacation without her. Luckily, hotels and airlines are making it easier and easier to travel with your pet. Many hotel chains offer services that cater to pets. Such services include beds and water dishes laid out upon […]

Continue Reading     |     June 27, 2012

Extreme Dogs

Two recent stories in the news caught my attention. One was about the world’s smallest puppy, a Dachsund mix named Beyonce and the other story was about the world’s largest dog, a Great Dane named George. At first I was intrigued by these stories, but then after thinking about it, I was completely disturbed by […]

Continue Reading     |     June 12, 2012

Canine Cancer

May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month, so I figured I would take this opportunity to talk about my experience with pet cancer. If you have read any of my previous posts, you may know that late last year my 6-year-old Westie, Bailey, was diagnosed with bladder cancer. When I found out, I was not only […]

Continue Reading     |     May 28, 2012

Military Heros

If you are anything like me, you feel great pride over the men and women serving in our military. My brother is in the Army and served in Iraq, so I am very proud of him. As a dog lover, I am very glad to see all the news coverage of our military dogs. Most […]

Continue Reading     |     May 9, 2012

Four-Legged Fashion

I am a firm believer in using fashion as a way to express your personality, as well as your dogs. I love fashion and could spend hours flipping through my fashion magazines. I enjoy seeing all the latest trends and designers. Ever since I got Bailey, I find myself looking through dog magazines for many […]

Continue Reading     |     April 30, 2012

Long Lines

Anyone who has ever taken any of my classes has heard me talk about my love of long lines. Long lines are basically long leashes. They are not to be confused with retractable leashes (see Sarah Gaziano’s great blog about why you shouldn’t use a retractable leash). Long lines come in many different lengths, but […]

Continue Reading     |     April 9, 2012


When you leave your dog at home while you run errands or go to work, do you leave the TV on or play music for them? I always feel better leaving some noise on for Bailey when I leave. I don’t think she pays much attention to it, but I think it helps drown out […]

Continue Reading     |     March 30, 2012

An Ode to Terriers

My name is Erin Schneider and I am addicted to terriers. I love their “stubbornness”; I love their endless energy; I love their curiosity; I love their appearance; but most of all, I love their big hearts. My trainer friends think I’m crazy for my love of terriers, but I am quite proud of it. […]

Continue Reading     |     March 9, 2012

The Doctor is In

Bailey and I have been making a lot of vet visits lately. Bailey does very well at the vet, but she is a nervous wreck for at least the first 10 minutes. She shivers and won’t sit still and it breaks my heart every time. I always bring a bag of her favorite treats and […]

Continue Reading     |     March 1, 2012

A Healthier New Year

The New Year is often a time for creating resolutions for ourselves, but how successful are they? We live in an age of self-gratification.  We eat too much because it makes us feel better. We smoke because it helps calm us. We are too busy, so we don’t exercise. So, at New Year’s we promise […]

Continue Reading     |     February 6, 2012

Combatting Canine Cabin Fever

I love walking my dog… in nice weather. Living in Chicago in the winter makes me dread going outside at all, let alone for long walks. However, my Westie, Bailey, could stay out in the cold for quite a long time. She lives for the winter. She especially loves the snow. So to keep me […]

Continue Reading     |     January 30, 2012

To Know Bailey is to Know Happiness

I wanted to write something more upbeat and helpful, but I can’t think of anything else but the recent news my husband and I received. A few weeks ago, we learned that our Westie, Bailey, has inoperable bladder cancer. We were very upset by the news, and because she is only six years old, we […]

Continue Reading     |     January 20, 2012

Home for the Howlidays

I have a six year old Westie named Bailey, and she has never missed a family holiday. I am very lucky that she travels very well by car and also as a carry-on companion on planes. I am also lucky to have relatives who accept her in their homes. But just because my relatives are […]

Continue Reading     |     December 23, 2011

Walk This Way

I have been seeing a trend lately that I don’t like very much like. I live in Chicago and walk my dog every day, and I would say 3 days out of 7, I see an owner walking their dog off leash. Now, I could get into how it is against the law to walk […]

Continue Reading     |     December 21, 2011

A Conference Puppy

I attended my first APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers) Conference last month. I went to the conference excited and ready to learn. Since it was my first APDT, I didn’t really know what to expect, but the minute I arrived I could feel the energy from the crowd. It was wonderful being surrounded by […]

Continue Reading     |     December 7, 2011

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