Training respecting the intelligence of a dog - no use of force-domination and no focus on treats! My methods provide training based on the true intelligence, abilities and sensitivity of a dog. In almost all cases, aggressive, anxious and/or obsessive behaviour exhibited by a dog occurs due to lack of guidance and structure in that dog’s life. The absence of a true mentor and leader fosters insecurity which can then evolve into anxiousness and may result in anxiety, obsessive behaviour and/or aggressive behaviour. If you stop and think about it for a moment – what happens to a human who does not have sufficient structure, rules, work and a good role-model in life…the human becomes mal-adjusted…so to for a dog. If dogs were pre-wired to be aggressive rather than social there would be very few dogs left standing. A dog in its natural state is a social being, a pack animal with the potential inherent to get along with others. There are very few dogs born with 'bad wiring’. When a dog goes bad it is almost always a human who is responsible for the ‘bad’ behaviour. Dogs do exactly what their humans tell them to do – the problem is that most people are not aware communicators. It is the human that requires training and it is the dog that is always willing to listen if it is instructed in a clear, confident and respectful manner. Give your voice a rest - it is not required, nor is physical force, nor treats. When you choose to learn how to communicate using the same techniques a dog uses the results are nothing but amazing. Dogs use body language first and foremost, they use their highly evolved sense of sight to read the most fractional of movements…if you cannot match a dog’s communication skills it is very difficult to effectively lead your dog. I provide one-on-one training with my clients and their dogs. I work with all breeds of dogs from tea-cup Yorkies to Pitbulls to Great Danes and every breed in-between. Dogs of all ages from puppies to teenagers, adult dogs to senior dogs. If you have more than one dog in your household – not to worry, I am accustomed to working with multiple dogs and I do not charge an additional fee for each dog in a household. Has a Trainer or Behaviourist told you… “Your dog was separated too young from its mother and that is why your dog behaves badly, your dog’s behaviour is not resolvable” Statements such as the one are not reflective of the real capability of the dog to become a well-adjusted canine. While a dog may have been separated too young – the cause of unwanted behaviour does not reside in the separation itself, but instead in the ongoing lack of quality mentoring in a dog’s life. Provide the dog with good direction and the dog’s behaviour will change. Many of the people that become my clients come to me for help after experiencing the trauma and hurt of dismissive pronouncements on their dog’s ability to evolve past unwanted behaviours. Many have been told to get their dogs medicated or to euthanize the dog. Like people, all dogs have their own unique personality. Whether human or canine, an individual’s personality is made up of both inherited and acquired dispositions. However unlike most human beings dogs do not hold grudges. Dogs do have memories, they do associate feelings, outcomes, states-of-being with inanimate, animate objects and locations but a dog does not hold a grudge like a human does…hence the saying ‘dogs live in the moment’. What does that mean? Well basically because dogs do not hold grudges dogs are able to accept a new way of approaching and viewing a situation, thing or location. This is fundamental to understanding a dog’s ability and enduring willingness to adopt a new behaviour. From this also arises the importance of teaching a dog to deal with a situation rather than – as many humans seek to do – avoid the situation. Confidence cannot be gained by avoidance it can only be attained by learning how to safely, comfortably and effectively cope with situations in a balanced ‘normal’ way. One of the biggest mistakes people make is waiting too long to properly address unwanted behaviour – when left unaddressed or when addressed improperly, the behaviour gets exponentially worse, leaving the dog no choice but to escalate to the next stage of behaviour. While treats do have a place in working with a dog, overuse of treats can have deleterious effects on the dog’s ability to cope and understand normal. Treat training can cross the line into irresponsible and unethical, as can other approaches such as force domination. It is always best to return to logic as a yard stick for measuring the validity of the chosen technique. Dogs do not coach and mentor each other by constantly handing out treats. So, a logical approach to working with a dog would be to use treats for some situations but not for all. When this line of approach is not adhered to a worsening of the dog’s condition is often the outcome. Having a reasonable range of expectations in regards to what tools and techniques will work affectively and humanely in different situations is another important factor in helping your dog to become a well-adjusted canine. A dog that is in a high intensity over-threshold (red-zone) state is not going to get out of that state by being offered treats or vocal praise. Once a dog is in a medium to high state of fixation the dog is imbedded in the fixation and will not un-fixate for a treat. Any dog that will willingly self-adjust for a treat was never truly committed to or even in a truly intense state of being. Using force and domination will only intensify the dog’s fixated state. You really have to be able to understand a dog, read their facial and body expressions/language and understand how to work with the dog in a way that supports understanding and humane resolution of intense unbalanced behaviour. 99% of the time the unwanted behaviour is inadvertently created by the human – the root cause is not the dog. Therefore it is of the utmost importance to address the issue in an all-encompassing manner and quickly – the longer you wait the more time, effort and money is required to fix the problem, the more psychological and physical damage is done – needlessly. In the end the dog and people suffer and all too often the dog will end-up hurting someone and can be court-ordered for euthanasia. Which, in my mind is a terrible loss of life as the dog is not bad; he/she simply never had the chance to learn how to properly navigate through situations. Given the opportunity to learn from someone who can direct it properly, a dog will choose to go back to their true nature – that of a socially well-adjusted being. Did you know that dogs are better communicators than most people? – I teach you how to be a better communicator… - Awareness – yours and your dog’s; - Facial expression and body language (yours and your dog’s) – identification, recognition, understanding and effects; - Learn to direct your dog without speaking (voice is not the best way to direct a dog - Understand all of the ways in which humans actually communicate and how it affects your dog; - Know how to occupy space to communicate effectively; - Know how your state of mind affects your dog; - Know when your dog is asking for direction; Full Boot Camp
I offer an all-encompassing ‘boot camp’ session (in your home) where I will address everything – from physical to psychological to diet/health. These sessions are typically four hours and may extend up to five hours depending on the issues at hand. If you would like to understand what a full boot camp session at your home includes and my methods just email me and I will send you the information. This type of session is invaluable as it addresses every aspect of daily life with your dog and ensures that unwanted behaviours are resolved… - Anxiety or over-excitement and/or motion sickness in vehicles; - Barking; - Begging for Food, Food Surfing (tables, counters, from children, etc - Bolting out your door; - Chasing your cats, and other small animals; - Chewing/ biting your hands, feet, clothing etc.; - Crate Training; - Dog-to-Dog Aggressive-reactive Behaviour; - Dog-to-People Aggressive-reactive Behaviour; - Fear of People, Places and Things; - Food Aggressive-Reactive Behaviour; - Grief; - Unwanted Guarding Behaviour of people, places and things; - Inability to Settle-down (calm) and Relax…’hyper activity’; - Inappropriate Behaviour with Guests; - Obsessive Behaviour; - Marking in the House; - Poor Leash-walking habits (pulling, weaving, flopping); - Separation Anxiety; - etc.
Session Cost Includes:
a) Pre-session correspondence, preparation, administration and travel time/km;
b) 4 to 5 hour in-person session in your home;
c) Session follow-up.
Session Cost Is:
Cost for all-encompassing Puppy Boot-Camp Session - $500.00 HST)
Fees above are as per my standard service area (i.e. Ottawa, Hull, Alymer, Barhaven, Arnprior, Bells Corners, Carp, Carelton Place, Fitzroy, Orleans, Kanata, Renfrew, Smithfalls, Stittsville, Manotick, Vars, etc If you reside in a further outlying area, depending on the exact location – I may need to add a km/time surcharge.
I Offer Three Payment Methods for Your Convenience Cash, E-mail Money Transfer, and; Credit Card via Paypal.Session Bookings
Sessions can be booked on weekdays and weekends. Pre-Assessment
I do not pre-assessments. As I work intuitively and can shift my methods and techniques on the fly to suit the individuals, I have no need to pre-assess. 90% of my clients have been to 2 or more trainers and/or behaviourists prior to finding me, they come to me because the trainers/behaviourists methods either did not work and/or made the dog’s behaviour worse or because the trainer/behaviourist gave up on the dog. I work with dogs in extreme states of distress – and have never let a dog and its people down. My Methods
I do not force-train, nor do I treat-train – neither methods honour the intelligence or way of a dog. I do not use e-collars, prong/pinch collars, choke chains, haltis, etc. I teach my clients how to work without such devices.
I Teach/train My Client… - To be aware of how their psychological/emotional state affects their dog; - To understand how they are mis-communicating to their dog; - To understand their dog; its body language, its reactions, its needs; - To learn how to effectively communicate with their dog; - To see when their dog is asking for direction; - To provide leadership to their dog; I coach and mentor my Client's dog(s Session Follow-up
Post session I send my clients articles that reinforce what we went through in the session. My clients know that if they have a question that they can call or email me. As my method of training/teaching is very thorough I rarely get after-session questions…but I do get a lot of wonderful after-session progress updates from my clients! Website, Blog Site, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest and Facebook
www. ottawavalleydogwhisperer.blogspot.ca Watch me in an interview on CTV Morning Live