Thursday • September 29
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Wild About Pets

Select an episode link below to view the on-demand archive.

Meet Your Pet's Real Needs: Lessons From the Wild
How can you make sure your dog or cat is living the healthiest and happiest life possible? Surprisingly, the answer can be very simple and lies in what their wild heritage tells you. Susan's guest this week, is the renowned veterinarian Dr. Barbara Royal, author of the new book, The Royal Treatment: A Natural Approach to Wildly Healthy Pets. You won't want to miss the helpful tips and great advice she has learned in her career of working with both zoo animals and household pets!

Why Adopting your dog is better than buying
Are you thinking about getting a puppy or a particular breed and feel the only way to get one is by going to a breeder or pet shop? Do you worry that if you go to a animal shelter for your pet, the dog will always come with major problems? Today, in honor of's online event, Pet 'Net 2012 Adoption event, we'll learn all the reasons why adopting can be just the answer to getting a great dog. Susan's guest this week is
Victoria Schade, dog trainer and author and we'll talk about the misunderstandings and truth about the animals in shelters, and how to successfully train an adopted pet.

Behind the Scenes Story of the Infamous Michael Vick Dogs
Whatever happened to the dogs confiscated from Michael Vick's dog fighting operation? Is it true that pit bulls are used in fighting because they are natural born killers and as a breed to be feared and avoided? What is dog fighting all about in the first place? Susan's guest is Jim Gorant, a senior editor at Sports Illustrated and the author of The Lost Dogs: Michael Vick's Dogs and Their Tale of Rescue and Redemption Today, you'll learn the truth about pit bulls, dog fighting, what the Vick dogs experienced at his compound, how they avoided almost certain death after being taken and where they are today.

Halloween Show: What's So Scary About Spiders and Bats?
Are you preparing for Halloween? Going for the fright value? Bet you've got some spider and bat decorations. We commonly think of these creatures as being good for a scare. But do these animals really live up to their Halloween reputation. Are all the icky things you hear about bats and spiders true? Find out today when I'll have live spiders and live bats in the studio with me. You may be creeped out by seeing upside down bats or watching as I hold large spiders, but you'll also find out the truth about them and how helpful they are to us.

During a Disaster: Us helping Pets, Pets Helping Us
If your town is affected by a disaster, such as a tornado, a flood or fire that causes widespread damage, do you know how to help your pets? Is there anyone who would come rescue them if you could not? Tom Smith and Craig Dopp of Palatine, IL's Animal Response Team, will talk about how specially trained teams are prepared to help your pet and what you need to know to protect your pet in an emergency. We'll also talk about how dogs themselves are used to help emergency personnel, such as firemen in times of disaster and what the actual physical benefits are to people from contact with our companion animals. Then, to discover exactly how our health is affected by the animals in our lives we will talk to Jan Vincent from the Animal Health Foundation of California.

Introducing Big Cat Week
Nat Geo WILD is presenting their second annual Big Cat Week starting Sunday, Dec. 11 - Saturday, Dec. 17th. As part of the week's focus on understanding and saving the world's most extraordinary big cat species, you can watch seven nights of visually stunning and powerfully resonant stories of nature's fiercest felines and the people working to save these majestic cats. Susan's guests today, are two of featured men, who leant their expertise to search out and film, never-before-seen footage of mountain lions, cougars and jaguars. Hear about the lives and challenges of these gorgeous cats and what the adventures were like from, wildlife naturalist, Casey Anderson, featured in the premier episode, Stalking the Mountain Lion and Dr. Howard Quigley, world-renowned expert on big cats and Panthera's Jaguar Program Director.

Improve Your Relationship With Your Horse
Susan's guest this week is Debbie Loucks, the daughter of Monty Roberts, author of The Man Who Listens to Horses and world renown for changing our perspective on how to communicate with our horses and train without any violence or fear. Debbie runs the Flag Is Up Farms, the learning center Monty Roberts started for horses and humans and teaches the non-violent training method, named Join-Up ®. You'll hear why some of the traditional methods you may have learned about working with your horse can hinder the relationship, how to use gestures that your horse will understand and discover how to increase your horse's trust.

Solve Behavior Problems - Think Like A Cat
Susan's guest this week is cat behavior expert Pam Johnson-Bennett and author of the newly revised Think Like A Cat: How to raise a well-adjusted cat - not a sour puss. Pam will offer insight about your cat's instincts that result in both positive and negative behaviors. And, best yet, she will answer your questions of what you can do to address destructive habits and behaviors that will be acceptable to both you and your cat.

Service Dogs for Those In Need
Hear the stories of the service dogs from the non-profit organization, Canine Assistants, that are trained to help people with disabilities by picking up dropped items, opening drawers, helping with the laundry, and enhancing lives in numerous ways. And they have all been taught using kindness and positive training methods! Susan's guest today is Jennifer Arnold, the founder of Canine Assistants and author of her new book, In a Dog's Heart: What our Dogs Need, Want, and Deserve - and the Gifts We Can Expect in Return Today, learn some of the same best practices and useful tips from Jennifer's work with the service dogs that will help you forge a better bond with your own dog and increase the quality of both of your lives.

9/11 Revisited - Now, for the Stories of the Dog Heroes!
During this year's television coverage marking another anniversary of 9/11, material was presented that had not been commonly seen before. Perhaps you watched some of it as I did and learned new things about the people who were the first responders at Ground Zero. Do you know, however about the heroic efforts of all the dog search and rescue teams? In this week's replay show, you'll hear Nona Kilgore Bauer, author of Dog Heroes of 9/11: A Tribute to America's Search and Rescue Dogs relate the heartrending, courageous and uplifting stories of these human dog teams and see the compelling photographs of the dogs at work.

A Better Relationship With Your Parrot!
Susan's guest today is professional animal trainer, Barbara Heidenreich, author of Good Bird! A Guide to Solving Behavior Problems in Companion Parrots. We'll focus on positive reinforcement training and how you can use it to solve behavior problems and enhance your relationship with your companion bird.

For the Care of Cats & The Care of Pet's Nutritional Health
Susan's guests today are passionate about animals and share the different ways they live their lives helping them. One - rescuing cats and the other- helping people get the best nutrition for their pets. Susan's first guest is Lynea Lattanzio, who has the largest no-kill cat sanctuary in the world and a television special about her sanctuary coming out on the Nat Geo Wild channel on Saturday, July 30, 2011. Susan's second guest is Katherine Manola, Owner of Go Dog Go in Oswego IL - a place that focuses on finding and providing the best products available for your active dog as well as products and services that will enhance your relationship with your dog(s). Find out what is most important for you to know about your pet's nutritional needs.

How to Prevent and Treat Arthritis in Your Pets
Arthritis is a common ailment of older dogs and cats. Today's guest is Dr. Shawn Messonnier, a veterinarian who combines conventional and alternative therapies in order to heal his patients and is the author of the new book, Preventing and Treating Arthritis in Dogs and Cats.We'll talk about the what's and why's of the disease, the different therapies available, offer tips to prevent your pet from getting arthritis and discuss what you should be asking your own vet to help your dogs and cats.

Elephants In Need
Don't you love elephants? The more we learn about them, the more remarkable they truly are. They demonstrate signs of grief, form deep bonds with each other and have a rich and complex social life. All is not well however with elephants that live where wars, poaching and habitat loss occurs. Disturbing behaviors by the elephants seem to indicate many are traumatized. Do these elephants have post traumatic stress disorder and if so, how and why? Susan's guest is G.A.Bradshaw, author of Elephants on the Edge: What Animals Teach Us about Humanity She will take us into the world of the elephant mind and culture and help us feel empathy for these creatures that are more like us than you realize.

Dog Bites Are Preventable!
Did you know that the majority of people bitten by dogs are from the dogs they know and nearly 5 million dog bites happen every year in the United States. Fortunately, there are steps we can take to prevent this from happening that everyone should know. Susan's guests this week are Dr. Bonnie Beaver, DVM, former president of the American Veterinary Medical Association and Kathy Voigt, president of Prevent the Bite a non-profit organization whose mission is to prevent dog bites to children through education. Don't miss this show that will help all of us stay safe, from dog owners, to friendly people that just want to pet that cute dog they meet to the dogs themselves, who can lose their lives from having bitten someone.

The Stories Your Dog’s Fur Can Tell
You've already been to the vet - a number of times. Your dog is suffering from health problems or allergies, but no one can figure out exactly why or find a remedy for the situation. It may be its diet, but how do you know what is specifically wrong with the nutrition and what the animal really needs? My guest today is Christine Huebner, president of Hairs To Health, Inc., and she has surprising answers that come from the tool of using hair mineral analysis - a scientific method that "reads" what is in the hair or fur . This can point the way to diet and supplement suggestions that can balance the nutritional requirements of the particular animal and can offer improvement in many health issues.

Reaching For A Dream - Paws First!
Have you ever wondered how really successful companies got their start? Many of them simply begin with an average person who had an idea and a dream. On today's show, you'll hear the true success stories behind many popular pet related companies and products. Susan's guest is Chris Witting, the creator and host of radio's Success Journal, a syndicated feature heard on over 300 stations nationwide. Chris will share numerous inspiring "go for broke and get rich" stories in the fun, engaging style that is the trademark of the Success Journal.

Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs and Wear Cows
Have you ever stopped to think about why you love certain animals as pets and would never think about eating them, yet enjoy sitting down to a meal of certain other animals? Join Susan and her guest, Dr. Melanie Joy, whose book title is the same as the name of today's show. We'll explore this provocative topic of what influences us to want to pet and cherish some animals and grill others. You'll want to weigh in with your questions and comments so make sure you listen live and call in on Friday, April 8, 2011 at noon CDT.

Pet Vaccinations - Are they dangerous?
We are all used to taking our pets to the vet for their regular vaccinations. But lately, you may have heard a lot of talk about the dangers or side effects about vaccinations, that some of the shots are not necessary and to stop. Is this true? Are you confused and troubled by the issue and don't know who to listen to or trust? Today Susan's guests are John Clifton, author of Stop the Shots! Are Vaccinations Killing Our Pets? who will speak about the risks of vaccinations and then in the second segment of the show we'll talk to a vet who I trust, Dr. Barbara Royal, DVM. We'll hear what she has to say about vaccinations and how she advises her pet parents. Between the two of them, we'll take this issue head on and get some answers.

How Your Emotions Affect Your Dog's Behavior.
Does your dog have a behavior issue that is a total puzzlement to you and does not seem to change no matter what your dog trainer does? Susan's guest this week, Kevin Behan, dog trainer and author of Your Dog Is Your Mirror:The Emotional Capacity of Our Dogs and Ourselves offers a startling new way of thinking about the root of your dog's actions. Your dog's behavior, emotions and cognition are driven by your emotions, some of which you may be unaware. This has huge implications for finally understanding why our dogs do what they do, how to remedy problem behaviors and most surprisingly reveal your own emotions that may be hidden from you, yet in plain sight, reflected by your dog.

Aggressive Dogs Can Be Walked
Have you needed the help from a dog walker, but were turned away because of the aggressive behavior of your dog?. Susan's guest this week is Emily Stoddard, a certified pet dog trainer whose specialty is walking high energy, high drive or aggressive dogs. Find out how Emily creates walking programs that work for both dogs and their humans.

Massage for Dogs? Yes!
Did you know that your dog can greatly benefit from a massage? Susan's guest today is Denise Theobald, a licensed massage therapist and the director of Canine Massage Chicago, a Professional Canine Massage and Career Training organization. Find out how therapeutic massage can be an important element of a balanced canine wellness program and how to go about learning the proper techniques to massage your own pets.

Dogs Who Comfort: Who Are Therapy dogs?
A therapy dog is a dog trained to provide affection and comfort to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, and stressful situations, such as disaster areas. Could your dog become a therapy dog? Susan's guest today, is Nancy Stanley, author of Pillow with a Heartbeat: The Heartwarming Tale of a Little Dog Who Finds His Big Purpose and the founder of Tender Loving Zoo, a pet therapy organization. You'll find out what kind of temperament a dog requires to become a good therapy dog, what kind of training is involved and hear the stories of the dogs who have given hope and love to children and the elderly when they needed it the most.

How to Rescue That Dog That is Thousands of Miles Away
What if the puppy being saved is a stray befriended and loved by a soldier fighting the war in Afghanistan? What is involved in bringing this dog home? And what happens when you fall in love with a shelter dog about to be euthanized that is halfway across the country from you and you just can't get there? Today Susan's guests are Christine Sullivan, the author of Saving Cinnamon: The Amazing True Story of a Missing Military Puppy and the Desperate Mission to Bring her Home. Christine, will relate what it takes to rescue a dog found on a military base. Then, in the second segment of today's show, hear Bonnie Silva, documentary producer and author of Fifteen Legs: When All that stands between Death and Freedom is a Ride talk about the volunteer animal rescue transport system that exists in the U.S. You just may need this service one day to save an animal's life.

How to Better Understand Your Dog
Your dog is communicating with you all the time through its body language, barking and facial expressions. But if we don't know how to read these messages, there is much we may misunderstand about our dogs. Susan's guest this week, Jennifer Arnold, author of Through a Dog's Eyes has years of experience learning about and from dogs through her work at Canine Assistants, a service dog school. You will be amazed by the stories of what service dogs can actually do to help the people they love and you will learn how to better "read" your dog’s behaviors and emotions.

How to Cope With the Loss of Your Pet
Losing a pet to death or disappearance can be a devastating experience for some pet owners. The intensity of grief and range of emotions felt can come as a surprise to those suffering the loss of their beloved companion and not always understood by friends and family. Susan's guest this week, Dr. Wallace Sife, is the author of the principle book on the subject of pet loss and bereavement and will offer guidance and understanding of the process and how to cope and deal with it, to anyone who has lost their pets, or will someday. And as pet owners, that means all of us. Don't miss this show.

How a Pet Magazine Became a Mission
Pet lovers, do you read the magazine, "Tails"? I do because it always has great interviews, discusses timely, relevant issues and has great resources for pet owners. Did you know that this magazine is free and is found in 16 different cities across the United States? This week's show, will feature the founder of the magazine, Janice Brown. We'll talk about how her rescue of a stray dog inspired the creation of the magazine and how as a company now, it has grown to embrace the mission of encouraging responsible pet guardianship, and providing solutions for making a difference in the lives of animals. We'll talk about how to be good guardians and how we all can be part of the solutions.

Saving the Pets After Katrina - Part Two!
Returning to continue the conversation about what is was really like to rescue thousands of pets in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Susan's guest is Karen O'Toole, author of Orphans of Katrina, a film production coordinator who felt compelled to fly into the besieged area and volunteer to help stranded pets. You'll hear details and stories that were not revealed in the media. Karen just returned from a reunion of the animal rescue workers, in New Orleans, so we'll hear how conditions are today. Some of the stories you will hear about what happened during the rescue efforts are sad and shocking, but for all animal lovers and pet owners, it's a show you won't want to miss.

Yoga and Reiki for Dogs!
Susan's guest this week, is Toriano Sanzone, a Chicago dog trainer who will share and demonstrate yoga techniques with dogs, that not only help stretch joints and muscles but strengthens the bond between human and canine, and increases the willingness of dogs to respond to cues. Then you will learn what Reiki is, and how Toriano has used this touch technique to lessen aggression and help injured dogs recover. Live cameras are in the broadcast studio so you'll want to watch to see cute puppies doing yoga! We'll also hear about the nationwide "Letters for Pets" campaign encouraging the White House to designate a National Adopt A Shelter Pet Day from "Tails" magazine, founder, Janice Brown.

Inside the World's Biggest Animal Rescue- Katrina!
You probably heard that during the evacuations of New Orleans because of Hurricane Katrina, many people had to leave their pets behind or they became separated from them along the way. What happened to these pets? Was anybody trying to rescue the animals and get them out of the abandoned homes in the weeks that followed the flooding? Hear the real life story of Karen O'Toole, a film production coordinator who felt compelled to fly into the besieged area and volunteer to help stranded pets. The truth of the efforts and results of trying to save these animals by both the home owners who had to leave and the rescuing volunteers in New Orleans is heartbreaking, sobering and poses many questions. During this week's conversation with my guest, Karen O'Toole, author of Orphans of Katrina , her experiences are hard to hear about but for all animal lovers, it's a story that has got to be told.

Photo by Daniel Susott

Finding the Missing: The Personal Story of a Search and Rescue Dog and Her Handler
Susan's guest this week, Susannah Charleson, author of Scent of the Missing: Love and Partnership with a Search-and-Rescue Dog," will tell us stories of her adventures together with her dog, a golden retriever, named Puzzle as they search for the lost, a teen gone missing, an Alzheimer's patient wandering in the cold and signs of the crew amid the debris of the space shuttle Columbia disaster. We'll hear how Susannah and Puzzle learn to read clues in the field, what it is like for a dog and human to rely on each other to accomplish together critical work neither could do alone and how Puzzle became an effective Search and Rescue dog.

Is it Possible to Become Too Attached to An Animal?
Does your relationship with an animal keep you away from friends, family, work, play, or responsibilities such as taking care of kids, jobs, or health? Is your life in balance or are your pets becoming all consuming? Susan's guests this week, are Allen and Linda Anderson, co-authors of the popular Angel Animal series of books that explore the benefits and complexities of human-animal companionship. Over the years that they have become experts in the subject of attachment and other pet topics, and they have offered answers to those people who need help in determining if the way they treat their pets might be over the top or just right for them. Join this lively conversation, by calling in and letting us know what you think, as we explore the topic, can one be too attached?

The Answers You Need About Pet Health Insurance
Should you get pet health insurance? Is it worth it? Will it really reduce the huge bills we can incur at the Vet's office? How do you choose the right company and the right policy for your pet? My guest today, Dr. Doug Kenney, a Vet, not a health insurance salesperson has done the research and has written a great book, Your Guide to Understanding Pet Health Insurance and he will clear up the confusion and give us the facts we need to know to make good decisions.

Why Does My Cat Do That?
Cats outnumber dogs as pets in American households, are much beloved and are mostly very easy to care for, compared to dogs needs. However they can exhibit behaviors that can frustrate and cause problems for their human companions. Has your cat stopped using it's litter box, does it attack other cats in the house, rip up and destroy much of your furniture or become aggressive with you for no apparent reason? Tune in today as Susan's guest, Dr. Debra Horwitz, an animal behavior specialist and one of the Vets on Animal Planets Housecat Housecall answers these questions and more about cats and their often misunderstood behaviors.

The Story of America's Wild Horses
For anyone who loves horses, you've got to tune in to hear Susan's guest Karen Sussman. Karen has devoted her life to saving America's wild horses and burros and is the only woman in the world that tends to four wild herds. We'll hear about the lives of wild horses and how they are different and similar to the domesticated horses we know and love.

Benefits of Positive Dog Training and How to Clicker Train
With certified clicker trainer Laura Monaco Torelli, (featured in my Oprah contest video audition - Click here to see video and vote for me!) , dog training is fun, exciting and educational for both the people and their canine companions. In this week's show, we'll find out how a small plastic tool, a clicker, makes a world of difference in how quickly a dog can learn to respond to cues and how you can train your dog effectively using positive reinforcement.

What Dogs Can Inspire
A real life golden retriever, named Tara has been both a character in a number of mystery novels and an inspiration for a rescue organization. Join Susan as she talks with popular mystery writer, David Rosenfelt about his book New Tricks, which combines a mystery, great humor, adorable dogs, and also cutting edge science facts about synthetic DNA into the fiction. We'll also hear all about what it is like living with 27 golden retrievers as part of the rescue organization he established, the Tara Foundation.

How Stress affects your Cat or Dog
We all hear about and experience how stress can affect our own well being. Do you know about the connection between stress and health for your pets? My guest this week, Dr. Paul McCutcheon, DVM, author of The New Holistic Way for Dogs and Cats: The Stress-Health Connection will be telling us that there are positive and negative stressors in our pets lives. He will help us identify the different types of negative stress that can affect a pet's health and then offer solutions for preventing and managing this stress.

A How, What and Where Show - Places, Products and Services To Know About
Dog shows and pet expos are great places to learn how to interact with your pets in new ways and discover what kind of unusual products, places and services are available that can provide help for you and your pet. I've done the work by sniffing out some unusual and good things to know about when I attended the 2010 International Kennel Club Dog Show in Chicago and the 2010 Chicagoland Family Pet Expo in Arlington Heights. Listen to the interviews and see the photos of what I found out.

Tales of Rescued Dogs
We'll hear about why popular British novelist Harry Porter has started writing a series of delightful children's books about rescued dogs - all told from the point of view of the dog. For the second segment of the show, we'll talk about a different way of rescuing dogs - through training. My guest, dog trainer Toriano Sanzone will talk about the different styles of dog training. Many of the recent dog trainer guests I have had on the show, all promote using the style of dog training known as positive training. I'll give time to the other philosophy, compulsive training, and find out why some trainers feel the need at times to utilize more forceful methods.

(photo of Alfie by Harry Porter)

Meeting Reptiles Face to Face
People often either love them, fear them, or know very little about reptiles. In today's show we'll take a look, literally, (there will be live cameras in the studio) when Susan's guest, Dave DiNaso of the Traveling World of Reptiles brings to the studio a number of snakes, lizards, an iguana and some surprises. Dave DiNaso started his business in order to teach children and adults why dangerous, venomous and feared animals are necessary to the environment in which they live and to encourage respect. We'll also learn which reptiles should not be pets, what reptile owners must be doing to provide for the welfare of the animals and why released pet pythons are causing havoc in the Florida Everglades.

Military Working Dogs - Canines Who Help Our Soldiers
Do you know about the military working dogs who have helped soldiers fight wars since World War I? For many of the wars we have fought, American families have donated their dogs to the military to aid our troops during wartime. Dogs, along with their human handlers are working in Iraq and Afghanistan right now performing a variety of tasks such as scouting, tracking, and even mine detection in order to save lives. Susan's guest this week, is Ron Aiello of the United States War Dogs Association and he will tell us the stories of these brave canine companions that serve our country.

The Rescue of Pets & Animals in Haiti
There has been much news coverage of all the worldwide efforts to help the people that were affected in the Haiti earthquake. What happened to any pets or animals that were also caught or trapped in the debris? The Best Friends Animal Sanctuary along with The Animal Rescue Coalition for Haiti launched a rescue mission to help save the animals. Rich Crook, Rapid Response Manager of Best Friends, is back from Haiti now, with many photos you can see, and will tell us what it was like on-the-ground offering help for the animals they encountered.

Futuristic Science That Is Saving Endangered Animals
Todays' show will feature the work done at the Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species. At this most interesting and cutting edge scientific facility, they are doing in vitro fertilization and cloning to save endangered wild cats and sand hill cranes among others. No matter what you think of the practices, you'll want to hear about the work this center is doing. This center was featured in the fictional scientific thriller, "Altar of Eden", by best-selling author, James Rollins, who was a recent guest on the show.

Time to Change How We View and Treat Animals
For many of us that spend time with animals, we commonly experience that they exhibit numerous emotions and behaviors that show empathy, cooperation and a sense of fairness. Susan's guest this week, is award-winning scientist, Marc Bekoff, who will talk about animal's emotions, their morality and the reasons it is time to change how we relate to the non-human creatures with which we share this planet. You won't want to miss this provocative and controversial conversation!

How Baby Wild Animals Learn
Major cute photo alert! You'll want to make sure you see the photos that go along with this show. You will hear captivating, funny and intriguing stories from Susan McCarthy, author of Becoming A Tiger: How Baby Animals Learn to Live in the Wild, about how playful baby wild tigers, whales, elephants, big-footed bear cubs and scrawny chicks, all learn about themselves, the world and how to survive.

Natural Health Care for Your Dog and Cat
In today's episode, Dr. Richard Pitcairn, D.V.M, author of Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide To Natural Health For Dogs & Cats will be sharing with us some of the limitations of the conventional approach in veterinary medicine, and how you can use more holistic and homeopathic remedies to help your pet.

Rescued Dogs and Rescuing gardens from dogs.
Today's show will focus on two stories from the National Geographic Channel's show, DogTown one of which will be the success story of one of Michael Vick's rescued dogs and then we will talk to Tom Barthel, the author of a brand new, one of its kind book called, Dogscaping about how to create the perfect backyard and garden for dog owners.

Genetic Experimentation on Animals - The Stuff of Science Thriller Fiction or Fact?
James Rollins, the popular New York Times Bestselling author of the SIGMA thrillers and a veterinarian has written the newly released book, Altar of Eden. It is a action packed thriller that combines real-world science, with provocative subjects of animal intelligence and genetic manipulation. Join us as we explore what is the actual fiction in his new novel and what is truth. You'll be surprised.

Performers, Pets and Politics: Attending the 2009 Great American Pet Expo in Chicago
Join me as I banter with local Chicago personalities, Steve Dale and Paul Lisnek about pets and politics, discover some very useful products and services for your dogs, get behind the scenes with the International Cat Association, Ultimate Air Dogs and interview one of the stars of the Classic K-9 Extreme team, a border collie named Sky.

Non-violent Dog Training with the "Original" Dog Whisperer
There are so many different types of dog training methods and books out there, it can be overwhelming to know which to choose. What is the real difference between the techniques? Does it matter? In this episode, find out the answers when we talk to Paul Owens, author The Dog Whisperer: A Compassionate, Nonviolent, Approach to Dog Training. Learn easy and fun techniques of "positive training" that is based on teaching your dog to do what you want instead of trying to get your dog to stop doing something you don't want.

African Gray Parrots are smarter than you think!
Dr. Irene Pepperberg, who worked with the African Gray Parrot, Alex and demonstrated that parrots can do more than mimic speech, will be Susan's guest. Dr. Pepperberg will tell us more about Alex's understanding of language, we'll hear about Griffin, the parrot that she is continuing to work with, and learn more about the intelligence and characteristics of African Gray Parrots that will amaze you.

Taking Great Photos of Your Dog
It is so much fun to capture those adorable moments and antics in your dog's life with a camera yet it can be challenging at times to get really good pictures. Susan's guest this week is, Kim Levin, a professional pet photographer and author of the book, PhoDOGraphy. She will give you many tips and suggestions for how to get great shots, while we view some of her own photos during the conversation.

How to Co-Exist With Local Wildlife In Your Backyard
When do squirrels, raccoons, birds or other local wildlife pose real nuisance problems that must be addressed professionally as opposed to the times the issue can be resolved by you with the right information and procedures? Find out about some of the myths and misperceptions we have about wildlife. Susan's guest, Joel Thomas, author of Creature Comforts:Wildlife Stories and Solutions will share the facts that will help you live more harmoniously with and understand our local wild neighbors.

Is Natural or Raw Pet Food Really Better?
Let's talk about all the buzz about "natural and raw" food for our pets. Are the benefits really worth the extra expense? And how do you know which brands are really good ones, that can make a difference. We'll be talking to the owner of a local shop whose research into the products and nutrition for pets convinced her to only carry pet food brands with no preservatives, hormones or antibiotics.

How to Ensure Animals Have A Good Mental Life
As pet owners, we are aware of the physical needs of animals, like food & exercise. But what does it take for an animal to be happy?Temple Grandin, the world famous animal scientist will answer this question, explain the core emotions that both we and our pets share and offer the simple rule that will help us create good mental welfare for all of our animals. Then, Milt Wilcox (former Detroit Tigers pitcher) tells us all about the "Ultimate Air Dogs."

Cats Can Be Trained - Even to do Acrobatics - Find out How!
You may have seen dogs that have been trained to do all sorts of acrobatic movements. But cats that can ride skateboards, ring bells, walk a high wire and even run an agility course? Today, hear all about the "Acro-cats" who do all the above things and play music. Find out how they learned to do all these things. In my second segment, dogs take the center stage as we find out how dancing dogs learn to do those fancy moves as we speak with Anna Schloff from The World Canine Freestyle Organization.

An Animal Rescue Group Unlike Any Other - Rescue Ink
Rescue Ink is a bunch of tattooed, motorcycle-riding tough guys who have joined together to fight animal cruelty, educate abusers and help resolve situations other rescue groups cant or wont handle themselves. They've been in the news a lot lately and have a book and a TV show now. Susan will talk to Rescue Ink's Johnny O , to get the scoop on what we don't see on the TV show.

Plus, find out about the "Olympics for Dogs" from Ken Scarnegie, founder of the the Classic K9 Show.

How to Care For and Train Your Adopted Shelter or Rescue Dog
Have you recently adopted or are thinking about adopting a dog from a shelter? Saving and welcoming into your home one of the thousands of animals from the shelters is to be commended. It can be a challenge however, knowing how to care for and train an animal that may have some unique issues due to its history. Susan's guest this week, Kim Saunders, from and author of The Adopted Dog Bible offers a must-have checklist for how to choose a good dog , explains what to expect from your rescued dog when you bring your new pup home, and provides suggestions about how to retrain an adult dog that may have little or no training.

We are wrong about Pit Bulls. Learn the truth!
Susan's guest this week, Ed Fritz, with the Best Friends Animal Society and head of the "Pit Bulls: Saving America's Dog" campaign, will tell us the truth about these wrongly understood dogs, and alert us to the growing situation across the country that is putting pit bulls, who are in actuality, innocent victims, at harm.

It's a Great Time to See Wildlife - Learn Where and How to Watch.
Fall is here and this means birds and mammals and monarch butterflies are on the move. Now is a perfect time to get outside and see animals as they are migrating to warmer climates. Susan's guest this week is David Mizejewski, celebrity naturalist with the National Wildlife Federation. Find out some of the tips for how to spot wildlife, where to find the major migrations and learn how to attract desirable wildlife to your own backyard.

What Friendship Means at the Country's Largest and Most Notable Animal Sanctuary
Do you know what happened to the abused dogs that were rescued from Michael Vick or where many of the lost pets from Hurricanes Gustav and Katrina went? They were saved by the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary. We'll hear the inside stories about the animals that get a second chance from my guest, Faith Maloney, Director of Animal Care and from Makayla, an eight year old girl who traveled from Illinois to Utah just to be able to volunteer a few days of her time.

How a Baby Buffalo Taught One Family About America and Their Hearts
Buffalos - seemingly an American icon and yet we know so little about them. In today's episode, you will hear the powerful and engaging story of a week-old orphaned buffalo who found a temporary home with animal lovers, Veryl Goodnight and Roger Brooks. My guest,Richard Rosen, the author of A Buffalo in the House: The True Story of a Man, An Animal, and the American West will tell us what it was like to meet Charlie, the buffalo and share the history of this most misunderstood species. We've got the pictures of Charlie and his foster parents for you to see while listening to the show. Wait until you see how cute a baby buffalo is and how huge they get.

The Tiger within your Pussy Cat
Are you aware that besides the difference in size and markings of the fur, a wild tiger and your pet cat is the same animal in many ways? Understanding that the behavior of your cat is instinctually rooted in its "wild cat" heritage offers much insight in how to live in greater harmony and comfort with your kitty. Drawing from the book "The Tiger on Your Couch: What the Big Cats Can Teach You About Living In Harmony With Your House Cat" by Bill Fleming and Judy Petersen Fleming, Susan Frank, will offer practical advice about why playtime is so important, how and why to teach your cat the word "no" and that regardess if you are a man, woman or child, being a better "mother" to your cat makes a big difference in having a warm, affectionate and respectful bond with your feline.

Answers for Allergic Cat Lovers
Are you allergic to your cats and suffer along or do you wish you could get a cat but due to allergies think this is impossible? This show will help. Find out from Diane Morgan, author of The Sneeze-Free Cat Owner, what the often misunderstood cause of the allergy is, what many options are for managing cat allergies and get the low down about breeds of cats considered to be less problematic.

In Search of the Last Wild Tigers
Travel along as Ruth Padel relates her story of a two year adventure traveling around the globe to learn all she could about tigers, their conservation and see the magnificent creatures in the wild. In the book, Tigers in Red Weather the question is posed, Can wild tigers be saved, or is this their last moment before extinction. Hear the personal story of Ruth Padel's quest to find this answer.

How Smart is Your Dog?
A key to selecting the right dog for you or your family is understanding the inherent abilities and intelligence of the breeds. During this show, Stanley Coren, the author of The Intelligence of Dogs will tell us about the different types of dog intelligences, how to rank your dog and offer some fun activities to do with your dog to "test" its IQ.

Mission Accomplished: Thanks to the Dog!
You may have heard of seeing eye dogs but did you also know that dogs serve people by acting as grief counselors, avalanche rescue workers and illness detectors? This week you will hear about dogs that perform all types of highly unusual jobs as Linda Anderson, co-founder of the Angel Animals Network and co-author of Angel Dogs with a Mission tells you the stories of pooches who use their canine skills in extraordinary ways to help people in extraordinary circumstances.

Positive, Fast, Training For Your Pet: Just a Click Away
Do you wish there was some easy, non-punishing method to train your pet to do certain things and stop doing others? There is! And it works with most animals, your dog, your cat, your horse or your guinea pig! Karen Pryor, founder of clicker training and the author of her new book Reaching the Animal Mind will be Susan's guest this week. You will learn about this remarkable technique.

Holistic Cat Care Advice
Susan's guest this week is Anitra Frazier the author of The Natural Cat, considered the holistic bible for cat caregivers. This handbook offers easy to follow, natural advice for all aspects of caring for your cat. During the show, Anitra will talk about the most important aspect of feeding your cat for optimal health, how to introduce the scratching post to the cat so it will actually use it, what the hazards of clumping cat litter are and what to do about those darn fleas. You'll want to make sure you call in with your questions for Anitra.

A World of Homeless Cats
Perhaps you have seen them - many eyes peering from behind bushes or groups of the same cats that seem to live outdoors near restaurants or places you visit. I came across a "colony" of them when I visited Florida on vacation one year. These are not simply lost cats, but are known as feral cats, the "wild" offspring of domestic cats that are primarily the result of pet owners' abandonment or failure to spay and neuter their animals. And there are feral cats everywhere - worldwide living in urban areas. In this week's show, we'll talk about these homeless cats; can they be helped or adopted? Are they a danger and what can you do if they become a nuisance in your yard. You'll hear what one organization, The Feral Cat Coalition is doing to help the situation and these cats.

Real Men Love Cats Too!
We commonly think that women love cats and men love dogs and never the twain shall meet. And whenever a woman lives with more than a few cats, she is forever known as "the cat woman". Tom Cox, Susan's guest this week, is a self admitted, Cat man. He will tell some of his very funny stories of owning seven of the most charismatic, idiotic and duplicitous cats in the U.K. from his book Under the Paw, Confessions of a Cat Man.

Owning Reptiles - What you Need to Know
Susan's guests today are both members of the Chicago Herpetological Society, on organization dedicated to the education, conservation and advancement of herpetology which is the study of amphibians and reptiles. They will discuss the pros and cons of keeping reptiles as pets, tell you exactly what you must do to keep the animals happy and healthy and reveal which reptiles make terrible pets and why.

Rescuing Animals - Healing Goes Both Ways
When people reach out and rescue abused and abandoned animals, they find that these very animals wind up healing and restoring them in many profound and unexpected ways. My guest this week, Karin Winegar, the author of Saved: Rescued Animals and the Lives They Transform will tell us stories of the remarkable people and the engaging animals she met as she traveled the country writing this book. (Photo Credit - Judy Olausen)

My Visit to the Chicagoland Family Pet Expo Show
I walked this year's Pet Expo show at Arlington Park, IL looking for the unusual and interesting in the world of services for our pets. Listen in as I interview experts in the field discussing a variety of topics such as: the benefits of feeding raw food to dogs, how taking your dog to a specially designed swimming pool can do wonders for its health and finding out the answer to the question is there anyone who can take care of your pet while you are in the hospital?

Time for New Spring Wildlife Babies
Spring is just around the corner for those of us living in the Midwest, and this means that many wild animals are giving birth or making preparations like building nests to get ready for the new generation. As people and wildlife live in ever growing closer proximity in suburban and urban areas there are times, when you may find that nest built right by your front stoop or a mother animal has actually moved into your attic to raise her young. What are you suppose to do when this happens? How do you protect your property and the lives of these animals? During this week's show, you'll find out how to handle the wildlife that comes a little too close and we'll be taking your calls in order to answer your particular questions.

Exploring Our Deep Connection With Animals
What is that instant fascination, fondness and amusement we have for animals of different species? The world over becomes engrossed with stories of stranded whales and helpful gorillas, curious about unusual interactions between wild animals and people such as when a coyote and a moose walked into convenience stores, and some of our favorite TV commercials feature animals. Why is there this deep connection and reaction we feel with our pets and in viewing wild animals? Susan's guest this week, Dr. Barbara King, will tell us numerous animal stories that answer these questions about our enduring relationships with animals. She is the author of the new book, Being With Animals: Why We Are Obsessed With The Furry, Scaly, Feathered Creatures Who Populate Our World.

Little Known Wild Animals: Heard about Bonobos?
In the first of my new series of shows where I'll introduce you to some of the world's most remarkable animals that remain largely unknown, you'll hear about Bonobos, one of the great Apes. Their nature, characteristics and family lifestyle will fascinate, endear and startle you when you realize how much we have in common with them and learning about the similarities between their sexuality and ours - may come as a real surprise to you.

Should Chimpanzees Be Pets?
Perhaps you've heard of the recent tragic episode whereby a woman was seriously injured by her friend's pet chimpanzee and the great ape itself, lost its life. This was not the only incident of its kind. Many chimpanzees are privately owned as pets and they can become aggressive, which is not considered unusual for an adult chimp. During this week's show, we'll talk about the possible reasons these incidents happen, and learn about the natural habits and characteristics of chimpanzees which are, after all, wild animals.

One Wing at a Time - Caring for Wild Birds
What's the correct thing to do when you find an injured bird that smacked into your window or a baby bird alone in your yard? Do bells on your cat's collar really prevent your cat from catching songbirds? My guest today, Susie Gilbert author of Flyaway: How a Wild Bird Rehabber Sought Adventure and Found her Wings will answer many questions and talk about her adventures caring for all kinds of birds in order to release them back into the wild.

Your Old Dog Can Learn New Tricks
Perhaps you have just adopted an older dog that brings its own doggy "baggage" to your home or your beloved but aging dog is exhibiting some new behavior problems. Now you're wondering how and if these older dogs can still be trained. Susan's guest this week is David Taylor, the author of Old Dog, New Tricks: Understanding and Retraining Older and Rescued Dogs. David will illuminate the challenges that older dogs face, explain what we can do when problems present themselves, and help us discover that it is never too late to properly train a dog.

I've Gone to the Dogs - And You Can Too!
Come along with me as I visit the International Kennel Club's Dogs Gone Chicago Show at McCormick Place in Chicago. I'll also talk to my special guest Kathleen Borgmeyer, a breeder of Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs, to find out about the great advantages of selecting a puppy from a breeder and hear about the breed known as Swissys.

For Anyone Who Loves Horses
Susan's guest, Joe Camp knew nothing about the care of horses when he went for a trail ride one day. Two weeks later, he was the proud owner of three of them. What he and his wife Kathleen learned about how to truly care for the creatures, and how to build lasting trusting relationships between humans and horses, has profound meaning for anyone who owns or loves horses. There is nothing short of a revolution going on regarding some of the traditional practices of horsemanship.

Getting Along Better with Your Dog - It's Easy! Just Behave More Like a Canine Than a Human!
Susan's guest, Patricia McConnell, the author of The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs will share simple techniques of how to call or greet and even play with your dog, using more dog-like behaviors that will yield wonderful results.

The Need-to-Know Facts About Your Cat's Pet Food
Have you been concerned and confused by the reports of pet food recalls in the news lately? Do you want to make sure you are feeding your cat the food that can enable it to lead the longest, healthiest and happiest life? Kymythy Schultze, the author of Natural Nutrition for Cats: The Path to Purr-fect Health will share her extensive knowledge of proper nutrition for your cat and expose the pitfalls of the pet food industry. Dog owners will also benefit from this timely information about what we feed our furry companions.

Communicating with Your Animals: What Do You Believe?
Can we really talk to animals and can they talk back with us? Marta Williams, the author of Ask Your Animal says that animal communication is real. She will tell us about the actual steps and experiments we can try ourselves to develop our own "intuitive communication" skills with animals. Will your results be the proof that makes up your mind?

Parents, Your Child Really Can Help You Care For That Dog!
It's a familiar story. You have finally given in and agreed to get the dog. Your child and you both pretend that you believe their promise "I'll take care of it". The reality is when it comes to owning a dog for the first time, parents often don't know how to teach the child specifically what they can and need to do. Susan's guest is Andrea McHugh, the author of "Your Child's Dog: How to Help Your Kids Care for their Pets" and she'll explain exactly what and how to teach your child to care for and train the dog.

What Cat Lovers Know!
Do you think you own your cat? Don't be silly. Cats own their people. They're in charge, which is why they don't obey us. That's what Susan's guest, Molly Brandenburg, a feline aficionado, artist and comedian says. Being an expert in "meow-speak" who has spent years analyzing our furry friends, she will share hilarious insights on how cats think and why they do the wacky things they do from her book, Everyday Cat Excuses: Why I Can't Do What You Want.

How to Save Your Pet's Life!
Could you save your Pets life in an emergency? Susans guest this week, Thom Somes, is known as The Pet Safety Guy and has taught Pet CPR, First Aid and Care classes across the US. He will give us the crucial safety techniques pet owners need to know to keep their dogs and cats alive and thriving. Join us and learn the 7 Actions-for-Survival to handle any pet emergencies.

A Place for Injured Wildlife
What can you do if you find your dog has mangled a young rabbit or you find an abandoned baby raccoon in your yard? Wildlife rehabilitation centers are places that can advise you and accept injured animals for healing and release back into the wild. Susan's guest is Sandy Woltman, a Wildlife Specalist at Willowbrook Wildlife Center in Glen Ellyn, which is part of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, IL. She will provide useful information and tell us stories of what its like working to save our wild neighbors.

Wild Animals in our Backyards
Most of us are aware of the common animals that live in our neighborhoods, such as certain birds and mammals like robins and squirrels, but there are also many others that live nearby mostly remaining hidden from our view. Join us to find out what they are and hear both fun facts and relevant information about a number of our wild residents.

Do You Know About The Revolution In Animal Shelters?
Hear about the inner workings of Chicago's largest No Kill humane organization, PAWS Chicago, with its new state-of-the-art Adoption and Humane Center and its numerous resources for pet owners and owners to be. You will find out how and why they are leaders and role models in changing what has historically been the fate of an abundance of homeless pets. This fate is a topic that collectively we tend to prefer not to talk about or even want to think about. Pet lovers and concerned people everywhere however will rejoice in hearing how the times are changing in this eye-opening show.

Alternative Medicine for Pets?
Have you heard of acupuncture for cats or Chinese herbal medicine for dogs? How about underwater treadmill therapy for pet rabbits? My guest is Dr. Barbara Royal, DVM, owner of the Royal Treatment Veterinary Spa and trained in both conventional and alternative veterinary medicine. Well talk about the who, what, when and why of these unconventional treatments, and discuss the circumstances under which your regular vet may suggest them. I was referred to Dr. Royal by my own vet, and Ill tell you what surprised me most when my cat Willie received acupuncture.


Wild Coyotes in the Cities. True or false: A danger to pets?
Perhaps you have recently seen a coyote in your city for the first time. Susan speaks with Dr. Stanley Gehrt from Ohio State University who authored a comprehensive ecological study of coyotes living in urban areas. In the Coyote Project, conducted in Cook County, Illinois, he poses all the relevant questions and provides many answers that youll want to know about these seemingly mysterious, little understood yet remarkable members of the dog family.

Unusual Causes and Answers for Pet Behavior Problems
In our debut show we look at possible causes and solutions for some of your dog and cats behavior issues. This weeks discussion and advice comes not from where you would expect it, veterinarians or animal trainers - but from the experiences and techniques of Occupational Therapists! My guests are Diana Henry and Deanna Sava, the authors of Sensory Tools for Pets: Animals and People Helping Each Other. They offer little known insights about the roots of pets behavior problems and suggestions for what to do that will surprise you and make total sense.

What to do When Wildlife Moves In
Often, the wildlife that lives nearby us decides our homes and businesses would be lovely new places to raise their families. Unfortunately, you might not quite agree. So what are the steps you can take yourself to encourage the animals to move out and when do you need to call in the professionals? Kevin Clark, founder and CEO of Critter Control will address these questions.