TRAINING PHILOSOPHY OF HAPPY FIDO COMPANY
Effective training is a partnership between you and your dog based on trust, love, and science. We take a unique approach to pet dog training and behaviour consultation. We focus on teaching the people so that they will succeed in training their dogs. We seek to strengthen the bond between people and their dogs by focusing on improved communication and training skills through reward-based training. Our approach combines behavioural science with practical experience to give people the resources they need to have the best relationship with their dogs.
We use science-based, force-free, and positive reinforcement-based training. We use food, toys, play, praises, and life rewards to teach your dog skills to thrive in the human world. Our approach includes but not limited to:
Antecedent arrangement – Changing the environment to set your dog up for success.
Differential reinforcement strategies – Reinforcing specific behaviours that are desirable to replace unwanted behaviours.
Classical/operant (counter-)conditioning – Creating positive associations to build confidence, as well as to reduce fear, stress and anxiety.
We use effective, evidence-based strategies. We are up-to-date through regular, continued education such as conferences, books, articles, and more. We are also connected with other trainers and behaviour consultants locally and worldwide. Therefore, we will gladly guide you to other professionals if your needs are outside of our area of expertise.
We will not use:
Scary noises including verbal corrections
Yelling and intimidation
Our focus is not on behaviour suppression through force and fear. Science has shown that these methods are not necessary to train your dog, even when modifying behavioural issues including aggression and reactivity. Science has also shown that these methods harm your relationship with your dog in the long run.
We invite you to read the position statements by the Pet Professional Guild and the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behaviour on the use of dominance and coercive devices in training and behaviour modification. If you have been using these methods to train your dog, we are happy to help you with the transition towards a more humane approach.
We believe that the best people-dog partnership comes from having an owner who is well-versed in dog behaviours and a dog who feels safe. Our training philosophy aligns with the Least Intrusive, Minimally Aversive (LIMA) approach, which has the same ethical guidelines that are required for education and behaviour modification for humans.
For more information on how to choose a trainer, please read this article by veterinary professionals. Dog training is an unregulated industry. We encourage you to ask questions because how you interact with your dog during training has an ongoing impact on his/her present and future behaviors, well-being, as well as emotional state.