Glenwood woman’s product makes ‘scents’
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” Laurie Raymond has worked with dogs and animals since she was a teenager. But it wasn’t until one day about two years ago when she found that a particular scent, used for training hunting dogs, would calm down a dog who barked profusely.
“That dog had no interest in anything,” Raymond said.
Raymond, who co-owns High Tails Dog and Cat Outfitters in Glenwood Springs, said that the dog would bark for hours. And while no chew toy or treat could keep the dog quiet, Raymond found one particular scent would.
That is when the lightbulb turned on.
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Raymond thought of creating a scent that would allow dogs to determine what is OK to chew on and play with. The benefit to owners would be keeping dogs from chewing on other things like shoes, belts, furniture, and other valuable items.
“I’ve thought that this could work,” Raymond said. “But it needed a little attention as to what scents would be used.”
She said that scents are relatively easy to come by and if she could just create a novel combination, not present in nature or elsewhere, she would have something unique to mark dog toys with.
That is how she invented My Dog Can Read, a liquid scent essence that is both an attractant to dogs and a novel odor that is easily distinguishable from all others. It consists of a blend of animal scents, the recipe for which she is keeping a secret, diluted to the point that a dog’s nose will be able to identify it while remaining virtually unnoticeable to humans.
Raymond said that dogs tend to chew on objects because they don’t have a distinguishable smell. And if they look similar to other chew toys, no matter what it is, they will chew on it because that is what they do.
Raymond called the product My Dog Can Read because she said that a dog’s sense of smell is the equivalent to a human’s sense of sight. And she had wondered for years why a scent had not been used more often in training a dog in areas of housebreaking and deterring destructive behavior.
“One of the things that always amazed me is how under used scent is in training,” She said. “Because scent is a dog’s native language.”
Her potion received a patent pending status and is awaiting patent approval while she and her son Dan Raymond, who lives in Seattle, develop an LLC to market the product online. She said that they hope to make the product available online by mid June.
Currently, it’s only available exclusively at High Tails in Glenwood Springs.
The directions to the product say that it takes just a few drops on the dog’s toys, and four easy training steps and the dog will be able to distinguish what is acceptable to chew on and what is not in just a couple of weeks.
The technique is not new, Raymond said. Hunters have used scents to train dogs how to track game for years. And other scents have also been used to train dogs where to pee. And while there are several other products on the market that smell and taste bad, to deter dogs from chewing on certain objects, this is a very different approach.
“What you need is a positive identifier, and there has not been anything like this before,” she said.
The difference with her product is that it’s positive reinforcement, not punishment, and teaches a dog to generalize about what is a toy through scent. While positive reinforcement has been around for a long time in housebreaking a dog, it has not yet been widely used when dealing with their destructive behavior, she said. But, she’s hoping that it will catch on.
“It’s something that to someone who has been working with positive reinforcement for years would say, ‘Yeah, that makes sense,'” Raymond said. No pun intended.
Contact John Gardner: 384-9114
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