Deb McBride grew up with dogs. Under the watchful eye of her first canine nanny, she learnt to crawl without falling over the edge of the rock wall, she learnt to play in the back yard, on her own, under a beach umbrella without her mother having to worry about her even rolling off the blanket, and importantly, she learnt about trust.
Decades later in 2001, Deb started working professionally with dogs and their people.
During the last 13 years, Deb has seen how the human emotional condition can overshadow and dominate relationships between humans and dogs, causing unnecessary behavioural problems and illnesses in our dogs. Redressing this imbalance is the purpose of Deb’s work and she has seen amazing results, for both dogs and their people, when clients start to shift themselves out of the emotions that have bound them.
But we don’t have to wait until there are problems with our dogs. We can care for ourselves and our dogs by starting to live harmoniously with them right from the outset; continually developing the relationship as our dogs move through the ‘childhood’, ‘adolescence’, ‘adult’ and ‘elderly’ stages. It is such an awesome way to be with our selves and with our dogs.
I can highly recommend getting on the harmony highway – what our dogs can show us about how we are living is not always a comfortable ride, but it is deeply rewarding.
~ Deb McBride
Harmony 4 Dogs places harmony above perfection.
Deb has first hand experience of working with ‘difficult dogs’ – her own dog Enid was aggressive from the outset and had her first fight when she was 9 weeks old. Deb recalls the first ever dog class they attended:
I had decided to take Enid to dog classes because she is feisty and possessive (read: ‘has been known to be aggressive’) around other dogs in certain situations. I knew that a dog class would be the sort of place she was a little unsure and therefore likely to rely on aggression as a form of protection – this is what I wanted to work with.
From the beginning Deborah made a commitment to socialize Enid. Dog classes were combined with daily walks on the beach ‘off lead.’
Walking off lead requires a commitment to being alert and to reading each new situation and dog that approaches. Many people aren’t confident with walking their dogs off lead but ultimately this is a great way to teach your dog responsibility and support it to know its place socially within the wider dog hierarchy.
Deborah brings a deep understanding to her work, not only from her experiences with her own dogs but also from the love that she has for canines generally.
Some people love all people easily, and forgive them everything they do. I am like that with dogs. Often clients who have had ongoing issues with their dogs begin to berate them and see them as a nuisance. But for me seeing the true nature of their dog is easy. I understand the dog’s behaviours by looking at the whole picture. I can often see how the human’s behaviour is contributing to the ill-behaviour of the dog and I support people to reflect on how they can address this and bring balance and harmony to any situation.
This approach has supported hundreds of people to look at the opportunities and messages that their dogs are bringing them and to develop richer more harmonious relationships with their dogs.