I am Dr. Mark Plonsky (Dr. P), a Professor of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point. I am an experimental biopsychologist with expertise in animal learning & behavior. I am also a dog trainer. I prefer the scientific perspective since that is how I was trained.
My goal for this site is to place emphasis on what science has to say about dog behavior and training. The idea is to provide a resource that will be useful to pet owners, hobby trainers, professional trainers, scientists, veterinarians, police K9 handlers and other students of canine behavior. In order to provide easy access to the information, four interfaces are available. The Main Page serves as a brief table of contents. The Library is a detailed listing and description of all of the sections of the site. The Site Index lists each of the pages at the site. Lastly, there is a Search Engine for the site.
Please note that I have tried to provide links to pages that provides substantive information about dog training and are not blatantly commercial. Thus, I do not agree with everything that you may read here. In fact, sometimes one article will contradict another. There is an old saying among dog trainers that goes like this, "The only thing that two dog trainers can agree upon is that a third dog trainer is doing it all wrong". Nonetheless, I am a firm believer in intellectual freedom. The American Library Association defines intellectual freedom as "the right of every individual to both seek and receive information from all points of view without restriction. It provides for free access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question, cause or movement may be explored. Intellectual freedom encompasses the freedom to hold, receive and disseminate ideas".
I have had dogs for most of my life and it is to them that I dedicate this site. I took a serious interest in training in 1989 when I obtained my first purebred German shepherd dog. We received titles in obedience, agility, and Schutzhund (protection) training and gave a few hundred presentations on the subjects of assistance dogs in particular and dog training in general. I have done the same with several dogs that followed. From 1995-2005, I worked as a part-time, Field Instructor/Presenter for the nonprofit organization, PAWS With A Cause. In 1992, I began a K9 Behavioral Consulting Practice. I typically keep two German shepherd dogs; a boy and a girl, an old one and a young one. I regularly teach group classes at Campbandy.com in Amherst, WI. I also teach a college level class in Canine Behavior.
The initial site grew out of my bookmarks file and was first posted in April of 1996. I maintained and updated it regularly until 2002.
Feel free to link to this site. If you wish to reprint an article, for whatever reason, you must obtain permission from the author of the article. If you like the site, please consider making a donation to help support it. I sincerely hope you enjoy your visit here and find it to be educational, helpful, and fun!
Contacting Dr. P
Please note that I do not give free, personal advice on problems related to dog training and behavior. In order for me to give such advice we would have to "talk" about the problem at length. That is, I would need detailed information about the dog, it's environment and routine, the problem, and the situation in which the problem occurs. Thus, this type of consultation takes time which I cannot afford to give away for free. If you wish such advice, please see the information I have provided about my K9 Behavioral Consulting practice.