Philosophies & Methodologies




Regarding Obedience Training:  My methods have been borrowed and expanded from those of John Fisher, specifically his “natural way” to train dogs as documented in Dogwise (1992) – I was mentored by one of his pupils.  In brief, behaviour is shaped through the consistent reward of desired, yet voluntary (offered) behaviour:  The dog is set-up to succeed without coerced associations.  I am also a strong advocate of behaviour conditioning which is, in short, positively transitioning voluntary behaviour into involuntary responses.  I do believe, however, that training is not without consequences or corrections.  Unwanted behaviour can be marked and re-directed, and as needed very mild doses of stress may be required through the use of safe avoidance methods or tools.  But, under no circumstance should a dog be subject to inappropriate stress  or pain.








Regarding Behaviour Management:  I believe in rules & boundaries (expectations) as set by the human members of the household.  The humans should represent higher ranking status in the household that is fair and with mutual respect to the dog.  Fair is not synonymous to equality as dogs can not live as equals – they either lead or are led by nature, therefore how they are led is the responsibility of the humans in the domesticated environment.  With this said, I do subscribe to Intelligent Leadership programs (ILP), which is not to be confused with domination.  What ILP (or rules & boundaries) are implemented will always be unique to the dog, breed, temperament, history, environment, relationship with owner and the owner dynamics ( i.e. mindset, willingness, capabilities, etc.).  The depth and breadth of what might fall under an ILP is too vast to itemise, and may not even be necessary, unless there is conflict in the home, such as the development of problematic behaviour, compounding behaviours or general threats to the well being and safety of the dog, family members and others.


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