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Training and Behavior Modification

I provide one on one private in-home training and behavior consulting appointments to provide you and your furry best friend with the help that you both deserve.

 

 What does Science-Based training mean? Just like medical doctors keep abreast on the latest research in order to treat their patients with the most effective drug therapies, science-based animal trainers stay up to date on the most recent research in order to provide their clients with the most effective behavior-change protocols. Information from the fields of comparative psychology, welfare, ethology, and applied behavior analysis contribute to a skilled behavior consultant’s recommendations, ensuring that the interventions they recommend for your dog are ethical, humane, and effective.

 

Check out the link from the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior for their position on training: https://vet.osu.edu/vmc/sites/default/files/files/companion/behavior/avsab-humane-dog-training-position-statement-2021.pdf

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No two dogs are exactly the same, therefore I do not use a "cookie cutter" approach to training. Rather, I tailor each program to help each unique dog and family with their area of need based on their dog's personality and history. 

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Puppy Training

Getting your puppy started off on the right paw in life is very important to raising a well balanced and healthy dog.

Raising a baby animal that is a different species than ourselves as humans can be challenging. I will work with your puppy  (as well as you and your family) one-on-one in your home.

My main focal point is to help you raise your puppy to be a well balanced dog emotionally and mentally and help you build the strongest possible bond between you and your puppy. 

Training your puppy should be fun for both the dog and you! We will work on this with the whole family! Children should be included in helping to train their new furry family member. 

Behavioral Problems

My area of specialty is behavior modification in canines, particularly when it comes to aggression, anxiety, and fear. I am a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant through the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. I have thousands of hours working with dogs with severe behavioral problems such as bite histories along with thousands of hours of course work, seminars, and formal education. I have worked with all sorts of behavioral problems ranging from dogs that have eaten the dry wall due to extreme anxiety when left alone to dogs with a bite history.

Please believe the AVSAB when they say force-free science-based training is effective and the best approach to treating and training dogs, especially ones with behavioral problems. 

 

Not all dogs can be a rockstar in all categories. Some of our beloved furry friends may be struggling in areas impacting behavior. Using punishment will not treat the root of your dog's underlying behavioral problem. In order to help your dog improve their mental health we must address the cause or trigger to improves your dog's psyche. 

Using science and positive reinforcement motivators such as food, praise, sniffing, exploring, and play (all based on emotional thresholds) I will work with your dog to overcome his or her area of struggle through counterconditioning and desensitization.

One of my favorite approaches to use is shaping a calm state of mind within our dogs on a mat of some sort. It is very important your dog be in a calm and relaxed state of mind in order to help facilitate learning and training. We then gradually begin introducing triggers while using marker or clicker training to begin changing your dog's emotional response for the positive. This process is called counterconditioning. 

Some of these behavioral problems may be categorized as the following:

Generalized Anxiety (varying levels)

Separation Anxiety (varying levels)

Fearfulness (varying levels)

Reactivity (varying levels)

Aggression (several categories)

Teaching a reactive, aggressive, fearful, or anxious dog that the world isn't such a scary place is a beautiful gift to give them.

Separation Anxiety is indeed very treatable but needs to be done gently and gradually. Each dog moves at their own pace. Counterconditioning and desensitization are how we will help your dog overcome their fear of being left alone. This is a panic disorder and needs to be treated as such.

Pippi, a previously anxious and overlyexcited dog, is now able to love stress-free walks with her dad.

This beautiful and previously "unmanageable" pup is now able to focus on her owner and enjoy a calm walk rather than reacting to everything she sees. 

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Charollette, a previously leash-reactive and incredibly fearful dog, enjoying relaxing in the park with her mom using counterconditioning.

Cooperative Care for Vet Visits

Veterinarians are incredible humans that have dedicated their lives to helping keep our dogs and pets safe. Our dogs unfortunately don't always understand that their amazing doctor is there to help them. 

Stress is a common thing for our dogs to feel when they visit the doctor. Through a concept known as "Cooperative Care" I can help train and condition your dog so that vet visits are less stressful.

Check out the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultant's link on what 'Cooperative Care Training" is: https://iaabcjournal.org/cooperative-care/

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Advanced Training for Stimulation

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Keeping our dogs busy and occupied can be quite a feat at times. Particularly for those who cohabitate with working breeds. Proper physical and mental stimulation are vital to maintaining a balanced state of mind in our dogs.

I will do a few trials and tests with your dog to  evaluate the best "job" for your dog. Often times I create plans based off of your dog's unique needs and your lifestyle. Some dogs thrive on treadmills while others love burrowing through tunnels for nose work. Together we will discover your dog's passion!

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