Mela Holcomb

I've always been a dog person but it took me 31 years, countless foster dogs and moving from Germany to Hawaii to get my first dog Bonnie, a Shar Pei - Pit Bull mix. Two years later she was joined by Bo, a Great Dane - Boxer Mix.

Even so I thought I am a "dog person", Bonnie and Bo weren't easy from the beginning. By the time they were six months old they both gone through three different families and ended up and in an animal shelter. I did not believe in the conventional wisdom of domination-based training from the beginning and chose the second most popular option of positive reinforcement. Unfortunately the limitations of this technique also provided disappointing results. Bonnie regularly disappeared in the jungle following her predatory instincts and refusing to return. A natural hunter focused on it's prey will never listen to you, right? Wrong! After assembling my own library of dog training books I was completely blown away of Ulv Philipper's Dog Management. Too many experts and novices are basing their approach around long-standing prejudices that dictate we should treat dogs like "animals" instead of intelligent beings worthy of respect and recognition. I wrote Ulv and his wife Maren an email expressing my admiration for their work, and told them about my search for a new approach like theirs. We started working together and in a short time my dogs had completely changed and so did I.

Sharing this approach with other dog owners and improving their lives is the main reason I started SUNSHINE DOGS HAWAII. I love seeing people reconnecting with their dogs and nature, confidently exploring the world around them and finding new adventures together. 

I am looking forward meeting you!

Mela H.

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Ulv Philipper

Since the early 1990s Ulv Philipper has been actively working with dog owners, constantly modifying and perfecting his techniques to promote healthy and secure relationships between humans and their dogs.

As society has changed, so has our living situation with dogs. Two of his central topics are promoting everyday safety and to correcting the mistaken assumption that dog psychological needs are vastly different to that of humans.

Mr Philipper figured out that hierarchical thinking is the cause of multiple frustrating misconceptions between human and dog. The term "animal" should not be used to distinguish ourselves from our canine companions, but rather point out our similarities especially when it comes to the need for independence and self determination. These realizations helped him develop a revolutionary approach to the industry based on what he calls "now-conditions" or "is-conditions" that acknowledge the dog's needs for personal autonomy in a way that humans can understand. This change in perspective makes it possible to create a relationship of mutual respect between you and your dog.

Mr. Philipper published the book Dog-Management and holds regular seminars all over Germany.