Deb D’Andrea, Nederland.  I love researching my articles, and backing them up with truth and facts. I will begin with one topic in mind that leads me down a rabbit hole of numerous web pages filled with information; eventually guiding me through a black hole that is of absolutely no relevance to the original topic I began researching. It’s actually quite fascinating just how much research is currently going on in an effort to gain an understanding of our beloved canines; a relationship that has been in existence for upwards of 40,000 years.

With the arrival of wintertime, I look for ways to keep my Girls engaged and keep them from becoming massively bored as our hikes are limited based on how cold it is. I’ve purchased bones, toys, and interactive games for them; but after about 20 minutes of ‘find the treat’ they’ve completely figured it out. It’s a daily exercise where they receive a different interactive game, and are encouraged to play as the treat reward is always a winner, but I can tell they want more.

In my search for the next step, I ran across an article that mentioned a research group called Dognition ( Dognition is a web page where you set up a profile for you and your dog, and run through 20 interactive games to help you understand how your dog thinks, learns and problem solves. You enter your dog’s responses which not only provide you with insight into how your dog thinks; but your results are compiled along with other dog companion responses to help researchers gain an understanding of dogs. This is a great use of crowd sourcing referred to as “Citizen Science.” (



There are 9 “Dognition Profiles” that have been established representing distinct characteristics as to how your dog approaches daily life. “ACE, Top Dog,” “Charmer,” “Socialite,” “Einstein,” and “Renaissance Dog” are just a few of the 9 profiles. Interestingly through this research they are discovering what we thought were breed specific traits, but actually cross through various breeds and are more about how an individual dog thinks. For instance, when you picture a dog that is used for tracking, you’ll probably think bloodhound; but what they’re discovering is it could be any breed or individual that may be proficient in tracking regardless of breed. So, if you’re looking for that totally unique gift for that crazy dog person, look no further as Dognition offers gift coupons:

Till next time. Deb D’Andrea, founder of 4TheLuvOfDogz & the Caribou Dog Ranch is recognized by the State of Colorado as a Certified Canine Massage Therapist and will visit your home or Vet to work with your dog. Canine Agility may be offered at the Caribou Dog Ranch in 2017 if there is interest. Deb currently has limited availability for new Petz Nanny Clients, and she bakes up fresh dog treats & doggy birthday cakes per order.  For information contact Deb at 720-675-7078 or email:

Deb D'Andrea

Deb D’Andrea a columnist for The Mountain-Ear. She is the founder of 4TheLuvOfDogz which provides mobile Canine Massage, Canine Agility and Petz Nanny Services. Her home-made dog treats are sold at local stores, and 4TheLuvOfDogz K9Birthday Cakes are available direct. Deb Petz Nanny’s for dogs, cats, birds, fish, horses, etc. Contact Deb at 720-675-7078 or email. Online: 4TheLuvOfDogz