Training Philosophy

Benevolent Leadership

I use positive reinforcement as my primary training method along with management. Positive in this sense does not mean 'good', it means that you are adding something to reinforce a behavior such as adding praise, attention, food, play or something your dog likes to reinforce or encourage a behavior to happen again. I also use negative punishments when appropriate, negative as in taking something away like a "time out": taking away the dog or puppy's being a part of the group to punish or discourage a behavior from happening again. Management is a key factor in training, manners and behavior modification and means that we are controlling the environment or situation to keep your dog from practicing the wrong behavior. Management is combined with training so that your dog can learn at an intensity level that is low enough to allow learning to happen without falling apart, and high enough to move forward in training. I rarely use positive punishment although there are times that it is the appropriate method for the time and place. Positive as in adding something to discourage a behavior from happening again, as in two dogs get into a mega fight and you spray Spray Shield Citronella Spray at them to break it up. Check out Don't Shoot the Dog by Karen Pryor to learn more about learning theory. I could go on and on, instead, I recommend reading The Other End of the Leash by Patricia McConnell to really get a good understanding of what a "benevolent leader" is. Both of these books can be found on my Amazon list on the Links and Recommended Products Page. Otherwise, feel free to call, e-mail or stop by the Training Center with questions!