Avoiding the rattler; workshops teach humans and dogs snake props

Photo copyright Martha Benedict. Used with permission.


Got dogs? (Yay!) Got dogs that love to hike with you in the mountains and canyons? (Big yay!) Got dogs that love to pounce on snakes? (Boo!)

The Mountains Restoration Trust is offering a series of workshops to teach techniques to dogs and their owners on how to avoid the Southern Pacific rattlesnake – one of the more common and yet potentially deadly snakes in our area.

At these 30-minute Rattlesnake Avoidance Training Clinics, dog/human pairs will meet Tracy Jenson-Presson of High on Kennels who has years of experience training dogs to shun the Tempting-To-Chew reptile.

Training takes place in a controlled environment with the safety of owner, dog and snake taken in highest regard. Through repetition, dogs will come to understand the sight, smell and sound of a rattler; rattlesnakes, afterall, have a distinctive snake odor that dogs can quickly learn.

Think your dog has got it down? Jenson-Presson says that often some dogs can “forget” the snake smell and recommends annual tune-up training so that everyone stays happy on the trails.

Workshops are $70. Upcoming dates: May 14-15 and June 11-12 at Tapia Park, 884 N. Las Virgenes Rd., Calabasas.  Times available from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Click here to register.