Our Training Philosophy

Our Training Philosophy


PATIENCE

  • Patience is an indispensable attitude and skill when approaching your dog’s training.  We must understand that while dogs are our furry family members, they are not humans. There is a psychological and communication difference between us. Because we think and communicate differently we must be patient through their training process while we develop connection, bond, and line of communication. A dog’s world has no place for displays of frustration or anger. In fact, these are often viewed by the dog as ‘weakness’ or instability. Hard to form a working and mutual relationship when one party views the other as weak or unstable.  That’s why we believe education on how to be patient and tolerant without being ‘permissive’ is number one before anything.

EDUCATION

  • A dog’s psychology, or way they think, interpret their environment and learn, is fixed.  This means they cannot think outside of their own psychology; they cannot learn, think and to see things as a human does, or a deer, or any other animal. We, however, CAN learn to think and imitate a dog.  Our psychology IS flexible. This is good news! Through education, coaching, and demonstration, we teach you how to teach your dog in a way that they understand as their own. When we do this, training becomes more simple and effective and most importantly, more reliable.

TRAINING WITHOUT CONFLICT

  • Teaching your dog with positive reinforcement and reward is a must. Punitive or punishment based training does not create the mutual respect that we want in our relationships with our four-legged family members. We don’t want our dogs doing things for us only because they are afraid. We want them engaged and interested in following our lead because we have created positive value in doing so.   Having said that, a training program that leaves out what we call a ‘distraction and correction’ phase is in our opinion incomplete and not fair to our dogs. We also know that here is where opinions and emotions run riot. We can look at ‘all positive’ training and the ‘old’, what we call ‘crank and yank’ aversive and compulsion training methods as extremes. We believe in middle of the road. Extremes are never good and always seem to exclude valuable information or practices. We don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. So how does this actually work? Whether you have a puppy or untrained dog we use positive reinforcement, reward-based training tactics until the dog has learned the new behavior.  Once we are sure that they comprehend, we then shift to a blended method to create boundaries.  Simply put, this is where we teach your dog the second half of the sentence. First teaching them WHAT to do, we now teach them what NOT to do. This is always done in a humane and safe manner utilizing the least amount of ‘correction’ necessary to communicate.  If this is done before a dog truly understands what we are asking, for example, the dog doesn’t fully understand the sit command, we believe this falls in the category of punishment.  Hitting someone over the head after asking someone to do something they don’t understand is cruel and we view this the same way in our training.

FUN FUN FUN

  • We all know that when we ourselves participate in any activity and are truly engaged and having fun, we learn better. Dogs are no different. Creating a fun learning atmosphere for you and your dog is important to us. After all, this isn’t an overnight adventure and if we’re going to ‘stick with it’, it needs to be fun for both parties!  When we mix challenge with fun for our dogs, training not only becomes rewarding for everyone involved, it fosters a bond with our dog like no other.  In fact, this is what fuels our passion for why we do what we do. To see our dog’s learning and growing through challenge, to see them begin to make good decision on their own and to have a relationship with them that is truly mutual, low stress and a bright spot in our family’s lives is something we won’t miss out on and we don’t want you to miss out either!

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