Archives for March 2009

Animal Career Chat: Five Resume Tips

What kind of edge can you get when you first start seeking a career with animals and have little or no animal experience?

I had to think back (way back) to when I just got out of high school when I was young and had only three or four years of experience.

The experience was an important piece but since it was volunteer, despite specialized training and studies with experts, I felt I needed a professional resume person to help me out.

Why? I volunteered but lacked paid positions under my belt.

The professional spent loads of time helping me to pull out what skills I had and what other things I had done to work toward my goal of an animal career.

The result was a professionally done resume that didn’t look to empty. Now I have to cut and choose what to include because I have too much experience!

That itself can be a problem–but is best left for another article.

When you begin seeking an animal career make sure to take a few steps to help you be successful in your job hunt:

  1. Take a personal inventory and list the qualities you believe are the strongest.
  2. Next list animal experiences under your belt followed by any courses you have taken to contribute to your goal of a career with animals.
  3. Ask friends, family, and employers for an evaluation of what strengths and weaknesses you have. Include those into your list and plan on working on those areas where you are weak.
  4. Plan on investing in a good professional resume since your resume is the first impression someone is going to get of you—to get a competitive edge make it a good one.
  5. Finally, each resume should also be specific to the animal job you are seeking.

This is a topic we can get into depth on later—but get started now so you can get an overview of what you might look like on paper.

You’ll see strengths and weaknesses pop out at you. Identifying what you need to add can help you refine your skills and give you an edge.

Training Talk: What is bad pet behavior?

One of the things that still amazes me is how people dismiss the bad behavior of pets as being acceptable.

Recently one of my neighbors began carrying a stick and was forced to order pepper spray because he was attacked by dogs (different ones) twice within a few blocks of his home.

As he described the locations of his encounters I assumed the problem stemmed from the contractor’s dogs on a construction site (another example of bad human behavior and failure to adhere to and failure to enforce leash laws)–but soon found that it was the property owner’s animals.

The owner took no action to prevent or curtail the attack!

That is bad pet (and owner) behavior but it is often more subtle than that.

So, what is bad behavior?

Unruly activities–but also behavior that creates discomfort or poses danger to humans (guests, neighbors) or other animals.

Usually bad behavior is really a pet owner problem because pets, like children, must be schooled on manners and taught what is acceptable and what isn’t.

Pets are living in a human-centric world and so must be taught how to integrate into it.

Poor pet parenting annoys me just as much as poor child parenting where people who fail to curtail the bad behavior of their children in public places–letting them run around unsupervised and allowing them to scream or make noise when they should be taught how to behave in a public arena.

Pets that jump on visitors, who are a menace in public, or that bark incessantly are exhibiting the same problems!

Teaching animals how to properly interact with others (humans and animals) means that they will be allowed more places and that they will receive more quality attention.

If more pets received early socialization and were taught how to properly obtain attention from humans, most issues faced in the normal households would plummet.

I’ll get into more examples of this in the future but chances are if you have pet peeves about dogs that jump, paw, nudge, or drool on you when you visit a friend–you’ve experienced bad pet behavior.

If you have–let me know what bugs you the most by commenting below.

Interested in just what those things might be? Be sure to sign up for early bird notification for the Pet Parenting School!