There is so much information available on dog training via the Internet and books, and there are many different trainers from all sides who claim their way is the “correct” way. It’s hard for a pet owner to figure out the right thing to do. In fact, different training methods and tools are the subject of ahot debate in the professional dog-training world.
Before that question is answered, let me explain what my own personal definition of dog friendly is. To be dog friendly is to offer your companion dog what they need in terms of food, shelter, exercise, training, and affection. The key words here are “what they need”.
Each dog is an individual. As a dog trainer, I have never trained two dogs in the exact same way. The differences may be subtle in some instances, and very obvious in others. Furthermore, personally witnessing improved relations in dogs who were problems to families, I don’t go by the theory that some trainers share that only the most sedate and friendly of dogs should be pets. Indeed, some dogs are born with a certain drive and high intelligence that may not make them the right pet for most families. However, that same dog might be perfect
for another family who wishes to do some very specialized activities. My family for instance is one such family. Finally, in that some negative behaviors in dogs come about from the lack of training and care by their human owners, it is our responsibility to make that right insofar as it is safe and possible to. It is these experiences as a professional trainer; along with the time I have spent socializing and training dogs in shelters that have helped me develop my personal idea of “dog-friendly”.
Many results based dog trainers use different tools in their trade correctly. These tools vary from trainer to trainer based on their interests and specializations. There are tools such as the prong collar; metal training collar, nylon slip collar, and electronic collars that are that are humane and dog -friendly training methods when used properly, under the guidance of a professional trainer. These tools can not only quickly help an owner obedience train their dog quickly and effectively, they can also provide such things as increased freedoms and safety for the dog due to the speed and effectiveness of their
obedience training. This is the friendliest thing that I can do for both the dog and the dog’s family.
There are some trainers and even certain professional organizations are folding to the pressure of what is called “purely positive” training. This is a whole different can of worms that I can’t get into in detail at this point. However, this political movement in the dog training world is the belief that EVERY dog can be trained without leash corrections, collar corrections, verbal corrections, body corrections, or any kind of negative or stressful stimulus no matter how slight it may be.
This is the reason that I am highly offended by the hijacking of this term, dog friendly by parties with only their own interests in mind. We are all professionals, and we all got into this business because of our love of dogs. I am proud to call myself a results-based, dog-friendly trainer.
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