Welcome to Confessions of a Dog Mom!

Who we are

My name is Dana and I am a dog advocate, writer, trainer, but first and foremost, I am a dog mom. As a little girl, I frequently brought home lost and injured critters. Connecting with animals was the way I coped with a traumatic childhood. I grew up with dogs and eventually adopted some of my own. My current charge comes in the form of a black and tan All-American nugget, aptly named Hope. A young, cunning smarty-paws, she teaches me so much about life every day. I got my start in animal behavior and training in 2004 but didn’t really get serious about it until several years later.

I am a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA), Graduate with Distinction from the Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training & Behavior, student at the Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior, and a PPG Pet Dog Ambassador Assessor. I am a Shelter Behavior Affiliate with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, and a professional member of the Pet Professional Guild. Basically, my life revolves around animals and helping people understand and appreciate them.

What we blog about

Isn’t it obvious? This blog is about all things DOG! My experiences in animal sheltering, rescue and medicine have given me the chance to interact with a WIDE variety of dogs. Old, young, fat, skinny, wild, calm, cute, fluffy, ugly, farty, grumpy – you name it, I’ve met that dog. As you can imagine, I’ve got some stories to share!
Full disclosure, I started this blog last year but shut it down shortly thereafter. My old, beloved best friend Lucy, “the best dog that ever lived,” became very ill. Between all my other commitments and running out of time with her, something had to give. But the blog is back and running now, and we couldn’t be more excited to connect with you!

Why you should follow us

Experience. As a survivor of trauma, I have a lot in common with many of the discarded animals I work with. My path has been one where dogs frequent, and often I connect more easily with dogs than I do with people. What makes my experiences unique is the commitment I’ve made to formal continuing education in animal behavior. Why? Because I want my passion for animals to be informed beyond my own emotions.
Authentic connection. This blog is about connecting with people while being brutally honest about my successes and failures as a dog parent. The more animal lovers I meet, the more I’m convinced that I’m not alone in all this learning and growing. And I firmly believe that we are stronger together than we are isolated (duh! humans like dogs are a social species!). Confessions of a Dog Mom is a place where we can all be real without being judged.
Hope & Inspiration. One of the biggest reason I love dogs is because interacting with them teaches me to be a better human. In my journey as a dog mom, I’ve made mistakes that I’d never want to admit. I’ve also made some amazing breakthroughs and watched with sheer joy as broken animals make those breakthroughs, too. Dogs are resilient and it’s through these experiences that we humans learn a little something about how to live a doggone good life.

The views expressed on this blog are my own and do not reflect those of my employer or affiliated organizations.
© Dana Lynn VanSickle 2017

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