Tag Archives: APDT

The DogSmith Offers Free Educational Resources in 2012! Starting with National Train Your Dog Month

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 2011
The DogSmith Offers Free Educational Resources in 2012!

The DogSmith Joins with The Association of Pet Dog Trainer’s in January promoting “National Train Your Dog Month,” emphasizing the benefits of positive training and socialization for pets.
Each year, hundreds of thousands of pets are turned into animal shelters because their owners could not find reliable resources to help them with their pets’ behavior problems. The Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) has designated the month of January as National Train Your Dog Month to bring awareness to the importance of socialization and training for all pets. January was selected as the perfect month because so many animals are adopted and brought home during the winter holidays. In support of the APDT, The DogSmith National Dog Training and Pet Care Franchises offer a variety of free resources including puppy classes, clicker training classes, eBooks, training cards and telephone consultations. The APDT and The DogSmith hope to help families and their pets start the New Year off right with information on the behavior needs and training of their pets. The APDT provides free webinars, a full schedule of information and other resources at www.trainyourdogmonth.com. Free DogSmith resources are available at www.DogSmith.com.


The mission of The DogSmith is to help new pet dog owners start the New Year with their newest pet family member in the best way possible. Niki Tudge, The DogSmith founder, says, “We provide a variety of free resources from puppy socialization and crate training to telephone consultations so new pet owners can learn more about how easy and fun training can be. We also offer new pet dog owners and animal shelters our ‘Canine Rescue Resources Program’ (CRRP). Our CRRP includes monthly puppy socialization programs, dog training podcasts and telephone consultations, all at no cost. It is a two tiered approach which provides support, education and assistance to animal rescue groups plus educational seminars and discounted training services to animal adopters in addition to our free services. We believe by doing this we help increase the adoptability of dogs and cats from a shelter environment, help reduce the number of animals that are returned to the rescue organization and help prevent animals being surrendered in the first place.”

The APDT and The DogSmith believe that a better understanding of dog behavior can lead to happier, healthier and more harmonious households for humans and dogs.

About The DogSmith

The DogSmith Franchise Services Inc. is a Florida based company whose mission is to enhance the lives of pets and their owners by improving their relationship, and the quality of the life they share, through providing professional support and training to pet dog owners, supporting and assisting animal shelters and rescue organizations to minimize the number of unwanted animals and offering affordable and professional care to family pets so that pet ownership is never a burden. To learn more about the DogSmith or become a DogSmith Dog Trainer, visit www.DogSmith.com or call 1-888-364-7648.


What You Must Know About Dog Training Methods Before Hiring a Professional to Train Your Dog

What You Must Know About Dog Training Methods Before Hiring a Professional to Train Your Dog by Niki Tudge Copyright 2011

What are the key training methods?

There are hundreds of dog training books in the market place and even more dog trainers, all suggesting that their methods are different, unique or customized to meet the needs of the individual dog. In reality there are only a few ‘types’ of dog training methods and just as few philosophies.  Effective and efficient dog training and dog behavior counseling methods are based on science and the principles of learning theory. Within this scientific arena there are opposing approaches, those that rely on compulsion and those that rely on praise. In other words, do you want to teach your dog what to do by teaching them new and more acceptable behaviors or do you want to punish them for the wrong behaviors, risking your relationship with your dog and the level of trust you share?

 

The Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT),  a professional organization of dog trainers who are committed to becoming better trainers through education, describes the three key methods as:

  1. Lure-Reward Training — the trainer entices the dog into the desired position by typically using a hand-held food lure, like a treat.  For example, the trainer lures a dog to sit by placing a treat in front of its nose and moving it backwards over its head. The dog follows the treat or ‘lure’ into the desired position. Reinforcement is generally giving the food reward along with verbal praise at the completion of the desired behavior.
  2. Compulsion-Praise Training — the trainer manipulates the dog into a position by using physical placement or training equipment. For example, the dog may be physically manipulated into sitting by applying pressure on its bottom or brought into heel position with a head halter or collar correction. Reinforcement may be verbal praise and/or a food reward.
  3. Marker-Training — the trainer uses a sound, word, or clicker to ‘mark’ or immediately indicate the moment a dog is correct with a behavior. For example, the moment the dog’s bottom hits the floor in a sit, a trainer would use his desired marker to tell the dog that was the right behavior. A marker is followed by reinforcement with food and/or verbal praise. The marker creates a brief separation between food or touch and the performance of the behavior, so food is a reward, not an enticement. Behaviors can be shaped, captured or lured using a marker.

It is our recommendation that a good dog trainer will utilize both lure-rewards training and marker-training. It is far more effective to teach students to teach their dogs more acceptable and appropriate behaviors. If their dog is exhibiting a problematic behavior then helping them to find and teach an incompatible behavior is very efficient.   This makes the problematic behavior ineffective and inefficient for the dog and as such the dog chooses to do the new behavior and is rewarded for doing so. For example if a dog has a jumping problem (its goal is to seek owner attention), we teach the dog to sit/stay instead.  The dog earns the same reward, the owner attention, and the jumping ceases.

 

The scientific basis for this is the reinforcement of the behavior. If a behavior is reinforced then it is more likely to reoccur in the future.  Reinforcement can take place in two ways:

  1. If the dog’s behavior evokes the presence of something good then the behavior has been positively reinforced. For example if a dog sits rather than jumps and it is given a treat then the sit behavior has been positively reinforced and is more likely to occur in the future.
  2. The other side of this is negative reinforcement. Negative reinforcement is when bad things stop. An unpleasant situation is removed the minute the dog engages in something more desirable. So if a dog is on a walk and pulling badly on their leash and the owner stops still and then only moves forward when the dog stops pulling, the ‘not-pulling’ behavior has been negatively reinforced.

The difficulty with negative reinforcement is that to remove something bad, something bad has to be presented and this can cause severe fallout with your dog. It is also easier to teach a more appropriate behavior in a more positive manner.

 

What are reinforcements in Dog Training?

Reinforcement is something a dog seeks to obtain, something they will work for.  This could be a toy, a stroke or a piece of food. Reinforcers that animals innately like (they do not have to learn to enjoy), are called primary reinforcers.  Reinforcers that dogs are conditioned (learn) to enjoy like toys and balls are called secondary reinforcers. Dogs are natural predators and are energy efficient. Dogs, like most animals, do things (exhibit behaviors) to access something they consider of value. Contrary to popular belief dogs do not exist and are not just waiting to please us. When teaching any student, human or animal, we first need to understand how to motivate them and make their learning worth their while. Not all behaviors are worth the same reinforcement. Complex behaviors need us to pull out the big guns – the really yummy treats, whereas a simple sit may just warrant a small treat.

Using food in training is very motivating for the dog and is also a powerful reward. During the training process we use food to encourage and reward new behaviors. Food is then very quickly replaced with life rewards, such as petting, toys, access to the outside, dinner, going for a walk or anything the dog considers valuable.

It is a valid concern when people express concern about not using food in training because they consider it bribery.  Incorrectly using food in training can create a dog that will only behave when food is present. This can happen if food is used as a bribe rather than a reward.  The goal is to make sure that food is being used as a reward and not a bribe.  There’s a big difference between the two and a professional trainer will understand this.


The Heavy Hand Myth – You Don’t Need Fear & Pain to Train Dogs.

If you are searching for a dog trainer please take 14 minutes to do some research. Watch this short video on why Force Free Training is necessary to developing a well rounded family companion. Dog Training has as much to do with the behavior of humans as it does the dogs behavior.

Contact a certified dog trainer to help you.

Search online at DogSmith.com or look at the websites of The National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors or  the Association of Pet Dog Trainers or local search engines under positive reinforcement trainers, force free dog training etc.

At The DogSmith we can guarantee effective affordable Force Free Training. Check the credentials of other trainers you may find. Ask them about their dog training methods. Don’t be afraid to say “No Thanks” and move on.


Can You “Train Out” Fear or Anxiety Related Dog Behaviors?

Most canine behavior problems are a result of fear or anxiety, meaning that the behaviors you actually observe your dog doing are elicited by fear or anxiety. You cannot resolve these problems by using punishment and you cannot ‘train them out’.

Let’s look at an example:

If your dog is exhibiting distance increasing signals when it sees another dog, such as lunging, barking, or growling, and the behavior is fear based, then punishing your dog, physically or verbally, is only going to make the situation worse. We humans tend to escalate punishment if the punishment does not work the first time. When the punishment becomes very severe it may reduce the barking, lunging or snapping but by definition punishment only suppresses behavior, it does not eliminate behavior. If you suppress fear or anxious behaviors through the use of severe punishment then you are left with a ‘ticking time bomb.’ At some point that fear or anxious behavior is going to appear and probably with little warning and with no predictability.

Here is a human example:

Take something you are afraid of – say a spider or a snake. When you see one you may scream, freeze, run or cry. If I hit you, shock you or scream at you each time you react in fear to the presence of the ‘thing,’ is my punishment going to stop you from feeling anxious or scared? No, of course it will not. It may reduce or alter your fear reaction as you now also anticipate getting physically or verbally punished by me. It will certainly damage our relationship, you will find my presence distasteful and you will no longer trust me. I am no longer safe to you and have moved into the area of being dangerous and unpredictable.
When we are working with dogs we want all of our communication to be instructional. Punishment is not instructional. It does not tell a dog what it should do nor does it help build behavior repertoires. In addition, it does, as scientific research has proven over and over, create many fallout behaviors such as aggression, learned helplessness and unhealthy attachment behaviors.

You may at this point be saying, “I don’t punish my dog.” But a punisher or punishment event is not defined by us, the dog trainer, or the dog’s owner. A punisher is determined by the dog being punished. Is what you do something the dog will seek to escape or avoid? If so then what you are doing is punishing your dog. Think about this the next time you shout at or raise your hand or some other object at your dog.

If your dog has fear or anxiety based problematic behaviors then be sure to consult a Dog Behavior Counselor. Qualified Dog Behavior Counselors are trained to deal with these types of behaviors. You cannot train these behaviors to go away. The actual behavior you are seeing is motivated by fear or anxiety and that requires a different approach to just training a dog to ‘sit,’ ‘down’ or ‘stay.’


“National Train Your Dog Month!” January 2011

News Release

Contact:          Rick Ingram

DogSmith Franchise Services

RickIngram@DogSmith.com

1-888-Dog-Smith (364-7648)


The APDT’s annual campaign to promote the benefits of positive training and socialization continues in January 2011 with contests to engage the dog-owning public and dog trainers.

Washington County FL, January 4, 2011 – The APDT has designated the month of January as National Train Your Dog Month to bring awareness to the importance of socialization and training, and most of all, to inform the public that training a dog can be simple and fun.  The APDT selected January as the perfect month because so many dogs and puppies are adopted and brought home during the winter holidays.

Hundreds of thousands of dogs are turned into animal shelters each year because their owners did not know how to deal with behavior problems and could not find a reliable resource to help them.  Aligned with this philosophy, the mission of The DogSmith National Dog Training and Pet Care Company is to help new pet dog owners start the New Year with their newest family member in the best way possible.

Niki Tudge, The DogSmith founder, says, “We support the APDT in the hope that dog owners, shelters, and other pet professionals will visit the event website (www.trainyourdogmonth.com), so they can learn more about how easy and fun training can be.”

The DogSmith offers new pet dog owners and shelters their ‘Canine Rescue Resources Program’ (CRRP).  The CRRP program includes monthly puppy socialization programs, dog training podcasts and telephone consultations, all at no cost.

Tudge says “The DogSmith Canine Rescue Resource Program is a two tiered approach which provides support, education and assistance to animal rescue groups and offers educational seminars and discounted training services to animal adopters in addition to our free services.  We believe by doing this we help increase the adoptability of dogs and cats from a shelter environment, help reduce the number of animals that are returned back to the rescue organization and help prevent animals being surrendered in the first place.”

The APDT believe that a better understanding of dog behavior can lead to happier, healthier and harmonious households for humans and canines.

About The DogSmith

The DogSmith Franchise Services Inc. is a Florida based company whose mission is to enhance the lives of pets and their owners by improving their relationship, and the quality of the life they share, through providing professional support and training to pet dog owners, supporting and assisting animal shelters and rescue organizations to minimize the number of unwanted animals and offering affordable and professional care to family pets so that pet ownership is never a burden. To learn more about the DogSmith or become a DogSmith Dog Trainer, visit www.DogSmith.com or call 1-888-364-7648.

About The APDT

The APDT has promoted education for dog trainers.  With more than 5,000 members who are willing and able to assist dog owners, the APDT is the largest professional organization for dog trainers in the world. www.APDT.com


The Best Route To Take To Become A Dog Trainer

The Association of Pet Dog Trainers recommends that you look for a training school that offers a good training program. There website describes a good training program as covering the following topics.

  1. History of Dog Training. A complete history of dog training from late 19th century to present. Comparison and contrast of dog training with other animal training endeavors.
  2. Animal Learning. Classical and operant conditioning, positive and negative reinforcement, positive and negative punishment, conditioned reinforcers, discrimination, generalization, habituation, sensitization and desensitization, blocking and overshadowing, motivation, establishing operations, conditioned emotional responses. Comparisons of dog learning to human learning.
  3. Dog Behavior. Dog development and ethology, genetics of behavior, fixed action patterns, social signals, body language, social development, critical periods, hormonal influences, breed characteristics.
  4. Designing Classes. How to design your courses/instruction materials once you graduate. How to counsel individuals, motivate handlers/owners, how to screen and steer clients.

Sourced http://www.apdt.com/trainers/career/default.aspx December 2009

Peggy Prudden in her article on the National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors website sourced at http://www.nadoi.org/howdoi.htm says “to be a good dog trainer one must be physically fit, goal oriented, self-starting, and love dogs. It takes a lot of stamina, patience, understanding, insight, common sense, and fortitude to dedicate one’s life to training dogs”

There are many schools and online courses that can be attended to learn and gather the required theoretical knowledge to learn about dog training. However as James Kesel in his article titled, A Career in Dog Training quotes “more dog training businesses fail as a result of poor business practices then because they are doing a poor job of dog training”

Becoming a Dog Trainer like many professional services requires that you also have a broad knowledge of business skills if your goal is to make a career and earn a living out of the profession.  Many service professionals are good technicians, are able to perform the actual skill of their trade, but are lacking in the knowledge and experience of opening and operating a business. Business finance and marketing are equally as important to the success of your business as being able to actually perform the dog training skill and these skills are acquired through business degrees and/or years in a business environment.

Join a franchise, a business entity that has all the necessary support functions, skills and experience to assist you in your success. Dog Training Franchises that are not selling systems with a huge capital outlay at the beginning are invested in your business, if you succeed they succeed. A good dog training franchise will be on hand pre-launch, during your launch and continually to support your business growth.  Join a dog training franchise that has a leadership team with a proven track record of owning and operating business successfully. The leadership team should include persons with finance skills, marketing skills and strong benevolent leadership skills.

Visit this website and review the following pages to get a clear understanding of how a dog training franchise can help you.

Click here to learn more about a professionally developed Dog Training School Curriculum

https://www.dognosticscareercenter.com/