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"Balanced Training" - Correction, Reinforcement and Reward

I believe firmly in an approach to dog training that promotes reward and praise as well as correction and reinforcement. Let's call this "balanced training" because it takes techniques from both ends of the training spectrum. Reward also balances the pressure of correction. There are lessons to learn from all philosophies of training. The key is in finding what works- refining it and combining it with other successful methods.

Balanced training means that your dog will be taught to cope with all real world situations. We do not work exclusively "below threshold" as some trainers do. We teach the dog to learn to cope with normal, everyday things. We introduce the dog to the "trigger" and teach them an appropriate response. This is done thoughtfully, and in stages. We use reward so the dog learns the benefit to coping with this new pressure. We introduce correction to teach the dog that it must follow through with our command.
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Anxiety in Dogs

Anxiety is an epidemic in companion dogs. Anxiety can be obvious to see: the dog destroys your home when you leave - or more subtle - the dog follows you from room to room. Whatever the outward behavior is, your anxious dog is not a happy balanced dog. He has an inability to fully relax, be calm and unaffected by change in his environment.

Many owners have no idea how to work with anxiety in their dog. They do many things that they think will help quell their dogs' nerves but very often these actions are the very things that increase the anxiety. They try to calm the dog by petting him a lot. They allow him to sleep on their bed every night. They let him sit by the dinner table every dinner time. They do nothing to stop him from following them into the bathroom time and time again.
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How to Build Resilency

Ten tips on building resilency.
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The Importance of Neutral, Calm, Clear Energy

Developing neutral, calm, clear energy with your dog is essential to a successful training program. It helps the owner establish a presence that demonstrates clarity and guides the dog into new, more balanced behaviors. This is especially important in a behavior modification program, in which we are working toward changing the dog's state of mind and perceptions. This starts with an attitute that is open and willing. From this place, we can learn to slow down, think clearly and guide calmly. There are several key ingredients necessary to learn how to become calmer while working with your dog: leaving baggage behind, learning to respond rather than react, and not being attached to a particular outcome. When we practice this daily, a new awareness begins to awaken, bringing with it a sense of calm and neutral energy.
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Key Protocols for a Confident Dog

Your dog didn't come into your home knowing that he isn't supposed to bark at the window or charge the door or chew on the furniture. These concepts have no relevance to him. When he misbehaves he isn't doing it to be rude or bad, he's just acting on his instincts. We can't use guilt trips or bribery to make dogs understand what we want from them in the home. The best way to help them realize what we want is to provide clear, consistent rules and boundaries. These rules (combined with sufficient exercise) are the structure that your dog needs and craves so that it can live harmoniously with you and your family.

Once you have structure in the home, you have laid the foundation for a clearer understanding between you and your dog. It is the keystone to any training program, and the first step to helping relieve your dog's anxiety, insecurity and aggression.
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Three Primary Components of Working a Successful Training Program: Attitude, Practice, and Technique

Every time you ask yourself, “Why am I doing this deep process of change and exploration with my dog?” And, “Wouldn’t I rather be doing something else with my dog?” Instead, try to tell yourself this:

My time with my dog is finite. I want to give my all to help him be the happiest, most content, confident and reliable dog he can be. So I will do everything asked of me.
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