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About Me

Hi, my name is Rachel and I am a nerd. I don't just love dogs, I love everything that goes with them. I also love learning about new things, and I am a huge gear head...for dog stuff. Collars, leashes, harnesses, toys, training gear, you name it. I love reading books about dogs and dog training. I love dog sports and dog rescue and scientific studies about dogs. I particularly loved my dog Brisbane, a highly-reactive Australian cattledog mix who started me on an endless quest to keep him safe, happy, entertained, and out of trouble. As geeks are defined by the depths of their interests, this quest eventually resulted in my becoming a Certified Professional Dog Trainer. I wrapped my life around Brisbane, and got back more than I could have imagined.


Here at The Dog Geek, you will find product reviews of all sorts. There are occasional posts about training and behavior, along with book reviews, stuff I made, and how-to articles. I do my best to make everything accessible to non-dog people while still being fun for my fellow dog nerds.

Originally titled Brisbane's Bark Blog, I started this site in 2014. Brisbane and Ru the chihuahua were my most frequent subjects. Several foster dogs, friends' dogs, and client dogs have made frequent appearances, each adding a new perspective on all things dog. My littermate cats James and Solstice are featured each Saturday. Sisci Godzilla the Australian Stumpy Tail Cattle Dog joined the family in 2015, and I lost my beloved Brisbane to cancer in the summer of 2016.

I post daily and tend to respond promptly to comments. I mostly review products I have purchased new or used, or borrowed from friends. Anything I have received in exchange for a review has been happily disclosed in that review. I am always honest and up front about the shortcomings of a product, and my reviews are always accompanied by unique and high-quality photos. I try to test products with multiple dogs, including mine and those I work with, and in multiple situations. If you would like us to review your product, please send me an email.

Puzzle Toys
I started challenging Brisbane with puzzle toys when he was a baby puppy, and in his eleven years we tried a whole lot of them. Here is a basic description of the types of puzzle toys we use, and some of our favorites:

Stuff I Made
I'm not always up for a hike or run on the beach, but I find plenty of ways to keep the dogs entertained. Here are a couple of do-it-yourself toys that require minimal effort on the part of the human:
Books I Like
I absolutely love to read, and highly recommend these books for anyone curious about behavior and training.
Me, Me, Me
I have been obsessed with dogs since early childhood, and have been reading dog training books since I learned how to read. I borrowed, walked, and trained the neighbors' dogs until I was finally granted my own at the age of twelve. Now I am in my early thirties and, as I like to remind my mother occasionally, the novelty has still not worn off. 

I am a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, I also have a B.S. in Zoology, and a decent amount of college credits in the field of animal behavior. I currently do private training sessions, work on a sheep ranch, and will be teaching group training classes soon. I spend a lot of time hiking and playing ball on the beach with my dogs. Non-dog interests include amateur photography, writing childrens novels, collecting dinosaurs and My Little Ponies, restoring my 1975 camper van, and reading books of all sorts.

The fastest way to reach me is by email. I'd love to hear from you!

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