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What Garbage Dumps Tell Us About The Natural History Of Domestic Dogs

David Muriello, CPDT-KA, Director

CATCH Canine Trainers Academy


Back in 2009 David journeyed into the garbage dumps of Mexico City with a small group of dog trainers led by renowned animal behavior expert Dr. Ray Coppinger.  The team was there to study the behavior of dogs living among people in the "villages" of the landfill.  This eye-opening experience gave them a glimpse into the process by which wolves likely evolved into dogs.  David will share photos, videos and research from one of the most unique places he’s ever had the opportunity to study dogs.  The essence of our beloved pets can be seen in the freedom enjoyed, and challenges faced, by the dogs in the dump and the information enhances our understanding of our canine friends.


When two dogs greet you can expect one of three basic outcomes:  play, conflict, or disinterest.  Why are greeting skills so important and what determines which direction the interaction will go in?  In this session, you’ll study the signals and behaviors that dogs exchange when they first meet.  Being able to handle dogs and read their behavior in the moment of greeting can be a hugely helpful skill for all shelter staff who want to learn more about the social skills of the dogs in their care.  With video and live dog-to-dog interaction we will take our understanding of dog-to-dog interactions to the next level—invaluable tools for introducing dogs being considered for adoption to existing canine

David Muriello is a longtime Professional Member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) and has been certified by the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers since 2004.  He is also a national speaker for Petfinder and Petco, as well as a member of the education Advisory Group for the APDT.  David is the curriculum designer and lead instructor for a collaborate initiative with St. Hubert’s—providing humane-based instruction for dog trainers in the shelter environment.



Later Event: February 28
TNR - What's Working Across the State

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