The Podcast for Pet Carers

Cameron Ford Odor Pays and Cognition

In our latest episode, Glenn Cooke sits down with a unique individual who has navigated the intricate pathways of canine cognition, detection dog training, and law enforcement – Cameron Ford. As a former police officer and an integral part of the Navy SEAL program, Cameron brings a wealth of knowledge to our conversation.

The turning point in Cameron’s career was the tragic 9/11 terrorist attacks, which brought the significance of detection work to the forefront. This drove him to start his own business, harnessing the power of our canine companions in explosive detection.

A major aspect of Cameron’s work lies in his innovative “Odor Pays” detection training, which has gained widespread recognition. But more than training dogs to detect, Cameron emphasises the importance of understanding how dogs think. His insightful knowledge in canine cognition is a result of his direct learning from Dr. Brian Hare of Duke University, a preeminent figure in the field.

Cameron’s journey is a testament to the impactful role our dogs can play beyond companionship. Whether it’s working with the Navy SEALs or serving as part of a police force, dogs have the potential to greatly assist us, especially when we tap into their natural instincts and cognitive abilities.

Join us as we delve into Cameron’s journey and explore the fascinating world of canine cognition. Stay tuned for an enlightening conversation that you won’t want to miss!

The Podcast for Pet Carers is proudly sponsored by Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers.


A Better Social Program for your Dog

In our quest to ensure our beloved dogs live happy and healthy lives, it is crucial not to overlook the vital aspects of socialisation and habituation. In this episode of “The Podcast for Pet Carers,” experts Glenn Cooke, a renowned canine behaviourist and trainer, and Verity Sanders, a respected dog trainer, discuss the significance of these factors in shaping well-rounded and balanced dogs.

Socialisation and Habituation: Building a Strong Foundation

Glenn Cooke emphasised the importance of early socialisation in pets, stressing that exposure to various people, animals, and environments allows them to develop vital social skills and prevent behavioural issues later in life. Verity Sanders echoed this sentiment, emphasising the value of habituation—gradually exposing pets to unfamiliar stimuli, such as sounds, objects, and situations. This controlled exposure helps them adapt positively, preventing fear and anxiety-related problems.

Positive Experiences: A Key Component

Both experts agreed that creating positive experiences during socialisation and habituation is paramount. By rewarding dogs for calm behaviour and carefully managing their exposure to potential stressors, we can help them associate new experiences with positivity. This approach strengthens their overall well-being and cultivates a confident and well-adjusted demeanour.

Long-Term Benefits: Thriving Companions

Investing time and effort in early socialisation and habituation yields long-term benefits. Well-socialised and habituated pets exhibit better behaviour, enjoy improved relationships with humans and other animals, and cope more effectively in new or challenging situations. These skills are vital for their happiness and overall quality of life.

Overall, Glenn Cooke and Verity Sanders, through their insightful discussion, remind us of the significant impact socialisation and habituation have on our pets. By providing positive experiences, gradually exposing them to new stimuli, and well-planned training techniques, we can shape well-rounded and confident canines. Let’s prioritise socialisation and habituation to ensure our dogs thrive in a world full of new adventures and experiences.

If you need help, the trainers at Canine Evolution can assist with a variety of services that can be tailored to your dog.

The Podcast for Pet Carers is proudly sponsored by Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers.


From Primates to Pet Care

Sian Gildon, the manager of Dural Pet Resorts Australia, has a background working with exotic animals in zoos. She brings her unique experience to her role in managing staff who care for dogs and cats while their owners are on holiday.

One of the challenges Sian faces is ensuring each animal receives personalised care and attention. Unlike zoos, pets in a boarding facility require individual attention to thrive. Sian and her team work with pet owners to learn about their pets’ needs and preferences. This enables them to provide a level of care that goes above and beyond what other boarding facilities can offer.

Sian’s experience working with exotic animals has given her a unique perspective on animal welfare, which she applies to her role at Pet Resorts Australia. She ensures that all staff are well-trained and equipped to handle any situation that may arise.

Sian’s background working with primates is particularly useful in managing the care of dogs. Primates are intelligent and social animals that require enrichment and stimulation to remain healthy and happy. Similarly, dogs require mental and physical stimulation to thrive. Sian’s experience working with primates has given her insight into how to provide dogs with the enrichment they need, such as daycare, training exercises, and playtime with other dogs.

In addition to providing personalised care for pets, Sian also ensures that the facility meets industry standards for animal welfare. This includes providing a safe and comfortable environment for animals to rest and play in.

Dog Aggression and Behaviour

Early Intervention with Dog Aggression and Behaviour

In this episode, we’ll be discussing the importance of early intervention with dog aggression and behaviour. I’m Glenn Cooke, and joining me is my co-host, Andrew Clark. We’re both passionate about dog training and have seen first-hand how important early intervention is in shaping a dog’s behaviour.

As responsible dog owners, it’s essential to recognize that early intervention is key to preventing or minimizing aggressive behaviour in our pet and working dogs. Whether you’ve just welcomed a new puppy into your home or have an adult dog with behavioural issues, early intervention is crucial.

The first step is to recognise the signs of aggression in your dog. Aggression can manifest in various ways, including growling, barking, biting, snarling, and snapping. It’s crucial to understand that aggression is not always the result of an inherent trait in a dog’s personality. Instead, it can stem from various factors, including lack of socialisation, fear, anxiety, and even pain.

Early intervention means addressing any behavioural issues as soon as you notice them. This might involve working with a professional dog trainer who can help identify the root cause of the aggression and develop a personalised plan to address it.

One essential aspect of early intervention is socialisation. Puppies that are socialised correctly are less likely to develop aggressive tendencies later in life. Exposing puppies to different environments, people, and other dogs helps them learn appropriate behaviours and how to interact with the world around them.

For adult dogs with aggression issues, early intervention may involve a combination of behaviour modification techniques and medication, depending on the severity of the behaviour. A qualified dog behaviourist can assess the dog’s behaviour and develop a plan to modify it, often involving counter-conditioning and desensitisation exercises.

It’s essential to remember that aggression in dogs is not always the result of a behavioural issue. Medical problems such as pain, hormonal imbalances, or neurological disorders can also cause aggression. If you notice any sudden changes in your dog’s behaviour, it’s important to seek veterinary attention to rule out any medical issues.

Early intervention is crucial in preventing or minimising aggressive behaviour in dogs. As responsible dog owners, it’s our responsibility to recognise the signs of aggression and address them promptly. Working with a professional dog trainer or behaviourist can help you develop a personalised plan to address any behavioural issues and ensure that your dog lives a happy, healthy life.

The Podcast for Pet Carers is proudly sponsored by Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers.

People and Culture in the Pet Care Industry

People and Culture in the Pet Care Industry

In our most recent episode, we got to discuss many of the misinterpretations in the HR world, particularly around bullying, harassment and discrimination with people and culture specialist, Cheryl McKenzie.

Human resources play a vital role in any organisation by managing and developing the workforce. It is responsible for recruiting and hiring employees, managing employee benefits and compensation, ensuring compliance with Fair Work regulations, and promoting a positive work environment and supporting employee development.

People and culture are two of the most important factors that shape an organisation. The culture of a company is the set of shared values, beliefs, and practices that define how things are done within the organisation. It is created and reinforced by the people who work there, and it has a powerful influence on employee behaviour and performance.

When it comes to people, having a diverse and inclusive workforce is crucial for organisational success. A diverse group of employees brings a range of perspectives and ideas, leading to more creative and effective problem-solving. Inclusion, on the other hand, ensures that all employees feel valued and respected, regardless of their background or identity. When employees feel included, they are more engaged and motivated, which leads to better performance and retention.

Creating a positive culture and fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce requires ongoing effort and commitment from leadership. It is essential to establish clear values and communicate them effectively, provide opportunities for employee development and advancement, and hold all employees accountable for promoting a positive culture.

In summary, people and culture are closely related and both crucial for organisational success. A positive culture promotes employee engagement and motivation, while diversity and inclusion lead to better problem-solving and decision making. To achieve both, leadership needs to be committed to creating a positive culture and fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce.

If you enjoyed this episode and would like to speak to Cheryl, you can contact her by the following.

Phone: 0419 673 217
Website: (website in development)

The Podcast for Pet Carers is proudly sponsored by Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers.

responsible dog ownership

Responsible Dog Ownership

In this episode Glenn had the great honour of sitting with his friend and very experienced Council Ranger, Greg Tredinnick. Greg has been working in this field for many decades in many states of Australia and has been a very strong advocate for training and development of his fellow rangers and the general public. Greg and his colleagues have seen it all, entitlement, cruelty, violence – just to name a few negative traits of mainly pet dog owners. Even though it’s not all a ranger has to do, it still forms a large part of their work because people keep allowing their dogs to do things they should not be doing. Sometimes it’s by accident and other times it’s just pure neglect.

During the episode, Greg made a point several times which Glenn totally concurs with, which is, “you don’t have to pat every dog!”

It’s 100% accurate as it’s not a right of yours to touch someone else’s dog without their expressed consent.  When this has happened and dogs have bitten, it will be the dog and their owner who will now have to defend themselves against someone who created the situation and now wants action taken. This is why Glenn, Greg and many others in the canine education space are advocates for more training in schools and a simple, common language in the general public around dog ownership. Naturally, this includes better behaviour from the public around other people’s pets.

Greg also explains to me what the differences are between a nuisance dog order, a menacing dog order and finally a dangerous dog order.  He also explains some of the very expensive costs involved for having these order and the immense amount of anguish. Ultimately Greg and people like him are trying to help us avoid these issues

Thank you as always to our show sponsors, Pet Resorts Australia, and Canine Evolution for bringing this episode to you, and if you’re in need of exceptional dog training advice, call Canine Evolution, and speak directly with a trainer.


Cat Behaviour and Care

In the pet care industry, dogs regularly manage to find themselves on centre stage. They are busy, active, noisy, and often very social. Because of this, they are focused on and studied more than most other companion animals. However, in many facilities around the world, cats take up a huge space in both pets and pets requiring care when owners are taking leave. There is an enormous network of feline fanciers and professionals who dedicate their life to making living with a cat more enjoyable for both parties and understanding many of their behaviours.

Glenn had the great fortune of interviewing Cat Psychologist and renowned expert, Jules dos Santos as she shares her professional and personal career into the cat kingdom and how she started her amazing luxury sole purpose cattery, Divine Creatures. Jules discussed with Glenn some of her key considerations when sending your cat away to be cared for and how you can help making that process so much easier with less stress. She also discussed how other professionals in the industry can help raise the bar by learning more about cat behaviour and improving the conditions and services available for cats

On top of being a very busy and successful woman, Jules additionally is very active in cat welfare and rehabilitation and has a foundation that supports this cause called, Ninth Life foundation which can be found here – It’s a charity that is worth our consideration as there are many cats that are deserving of a loving new home.

The Podcast for Pet Carers is proudly sponsored by Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers

Dealing with “Karens” and “Kens”

Ray Croc, the founder of McDonalds echoed a phrase that, “The customer is always right!” A wonderful sentiment however, it has now led to some customers, certainly not all, believing they can talk to staff in the most vexatious ways.  This has birthed the phrase, “Karens” for the ladies and “Kens” for the men. “Karens” and “Kens” are said to have a usual phrase of, “I demand to see your manager”.

Even when they can speak to the manager, they are not happy and will attempt to escalate it to the business owner.  Now sometimes this is necessary in a situation where a business has proven incompetent and the person in front of house is incapable of adequately resolving the issue. This would be a fair and reasonable process to take it to an appropriate person in authority to work on resolution.

Where Karens and Kens are different is they start shooting first and ask questions later.  They can be unreasonably rude and hostile and will jump up and down if they don’t get their way. The troubling part of this is that they will often target vulnerable young staff without mercy or remorse. Some of these people on the front line get used as a heat shield, even when they are trying to be helpful and understanding.

In this episode, we speak to Blake de Bruin about his experience in dealing with “Karens” and “Kens”. Blake has extensive experience in the pet care industry, having run his family-owned multi-award-winning pet resort business, which has been in his family for over 37 years. He also has sat on the board of the Pet Industry Association of Australia and currently sits as the Vice President of the Australian Pet Care Association.

The Podcast for Pet Carers is proudly sponsored by Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers

benefits of grooming

The Benefits of Grooming

Dog grooming has become a big business in the pet industry all over the world where people can take their pet dog for a tidy up or their show prospect for a complete make over to help catch the judges eye. Grooming your dog however is not just about good looks, it has so many health benefits as well, especially for some of the pets who’s coats continue to grow. Of the many times groomers look over dogs, they get to see and feel changes that can and are happening to your dog.  Many times, these can be the first early warning of something that can become more serious if not kept on top of.

Another point of discussion is that while there are so many groomers out there, many are not qualified in any way whatsoever.  Some groomers can literally just buy the equipment they need, do some basic marketing and off they go into business with little or no experience.  This does need to be a bit of buyer beware when selecting a trusted professional to take the best care of your dog with assurances of their health and welfare. You can do this by checking credentials and following up on testimonials to ensure the standards of the groomer are endorsed.

In episode 4 of the Podcast for Pet Carers, we got to speak with the ladies from Spots & Brows, Heather Lamy and Elise Smith about their journey into starting their own grooming salon within the Pet Resorts Australia Dural’s complex.  They share stories about their start up, how they came to be friends and business partners, the difficulties of starting a new business, how they got their name and then onto why grooming is so essential for not just pet owners but for many of the pet guests staying at boarding facilities.  If you want to know more about the ladies from Spots & Brows grooming, you can find them at

Thank you to our show sponsors Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers

The Effects Of Diet On Dogs' Behaviour

The Effects Of Diet On Dogs Behaviour

In episode 3, we sat down with Narelle Cooke who is an accredited Naturopath, Nutritionist and Herbalist, practicing not only with people but largely with people’s pet dogs. The episode focuses on the effect of diet on dogs behaviour and how what you feed your dog can have a huge effect on their overall health and wellbeing.

We felt this would be a suitable topic of discussion for pet carers and even pet parents because of the impact stress can have any time you change your dog’s environment, such as taking your dog to a dog boarding facility. Stress is entirely normal in low doses, and it will be something any species, (including us) will endure over a range of different environmental changes. Because a change of environment can and will cause a layer of stress to your dog, we talk about all the preparation you can do to ensure that is at the lowest possible scale.

This is where Narelle’s expertise comes in with her understanding of this field as she helps guide you through some of the areas of feeding programs, supplements and lifestyle choices that will help your dog live its best life.

Narelle has a Bachelor of Agricultural Science (with honours) from the University of Melbourne, she worked for over a decade as a Research Pathologist before moving into the field of Regulatory Affairs for a global pharmaceutical company. It was in these roles that Narelle gained a deep, first-hand understanding of the effect that pathogens, environmental toxins and food production techniques have on our food, our bodies and consequently – our health.

It was this knowledge that led her to complete additional qualifications in Naturopathy, Nutritional Medicine, and Western Herbal Medicine, including a Bachelor of Health Science, and to begin her journey as a natural healthcare practitioner for both people and pets.

After listening to the episode, if you want to contact Narelle to speak to her more about her courses, services, and canine supplement range, you can do so by visiting:

Thank you to our show sponsors Pet Resorts Australia and Canine Evolution.

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook @podcastforpetcarers