Category Archives: Dog Behavior

Dog Trainer Secrets German Shepherd Dog

DOG TRAINING SECRET

DOG TRAINING SECRET

Dog Training Secret

“Take your dog everywhere you go and don’t let it be a JERK!”

Dog Training Car MannersNot too long ago I ended up with a dog, a big dog, a big German Shepherd Dog.  I was not looking for a dog, and I definitely was not looking for a large breed dog.  The timing of ending up with another unplanned dog into my life was inconvenient to say the least. Sometimes life gives us unexpected surprises.  In this case it was “Nizzy,” who taught me the greatest Dog Training Secret there is. “Take your dog everywhere you go and don’t let it be a JERK!”

I’m  blessed to have a very successful dog training business in Phoenix Arizona, the Nation’s 4th largest metropolis.  There are tons of dogs that need dog training help and that means that as a dog behaviorist and dog trainer I stay extremely busy.

Phoenix Dog TrainersThis year marks 43 years that I have been personally training dogs.  I started at the age of 9 as a junior handler competing in AKC Obedience Matches and putting titles on dogs.  

Throughout the many years of training and working with various breed of dogs, different age dogs, and probably every behavior problem imaginable to a dog, I always get asked what is the secret to a well trained dog, and I have many times just shouted back, “its all about consistency and repetition.” 

I always get asked what is the secret to a well trained dog, and I have many times just shouted back, “its all about consistency and repetition.” 

While those are two very important aspects to a well trained dog that a lot of dog trainers would agree with, put 100 dog trainers all in a room together and ask them whats is the most important dog training secret, and you will probably get 100 different answers.

I have not had hardly any time to train “Nizzy” the Big German Shepherd Dog.  It might come as a surprise to many dog owners, not all dog trainers dogs are well trained.  One main reason is that they are so busy training other peoples dogs, they don’t have much time at all to train with or work with their own dogs.

Because I’m so busy and I did not want to have to leave “Nizzy” the GSD at home for long hours on end, I decided I would just have to take her with me everywhere I went despite it being a pain in my butt, I did just that.  “Nizzy” went with me pretty much everywhere I go.

dog training secret 3I took her to where I do volunteer work on Fridays.  She is the “Office Mascot.”  Everybody loves her.  I never wanted her to be a problem for anyone at the office where I do volunteer work at so in the beginning I had a leash on her that she would drag.  When she started to get into someones personal space, I called her to me and if need be I gave a tug guiding her back to me and away for the person or people in the office.

At times when she was calm and aloof to the people who were in the office I let “Nizzy” meet them and be pet by them briefly.  any excitable energy that is not calm got corrected with the leash.  We are not here to play.  Play happens outside. Calm happens inside.

Play happens outside. Calm happens inside.

I had group dog training classes to teach, and I brought “Nizzy” with me even though my students dogs were better trained.  Besides, I had gotten in the habit of telling people. “I’m not sure if I am keeping this dog.  I don’t have time for her, and I don’t have time to train her.”

During the group dog training class I was teaching I would sometimes just keep “Nizzy” on leash next to me.  Sometimes I would have her lay down a little bit out of the way of the other dogs who were there to train.  “Nizzy” is not there to train.

Many of the dogs in the group classes I teach are reactive or aggressive so it is important that “Nizzy” stays calm and not reactive at all herself.  I was always very close to her to correct her with the leash if she even got slightly excited around those reactive dogs in my group.

I also had to take “Nizzy” to my private lesson appointments with me too.  In Arizona it can get hot fast.  Hell, there are not many days in Arizona that are not hot.  I was able to leave “Nizzy” in the vehicle in the early morning but by mid afternoon and definitely late afternoon, it was too hot to keep her in the car.  

I remember at first thinking to myself, “what are my clients going to think when they see me with this untrained dog?”  I remember thinking that they will see me as a “REAL” person with a dog.

During private lessons I would bring “Nizzy” in the client’s house, outside in their back yard, or outside in the front of the house.  When I would go with clients to the park, or to train near a dog park for distractions, or to train inside of Home Depot for distractions, I took “Nizzy” with me.  If she became a jerk I just gave a a quick leash correction and she would settle down. 

Dog Trainer Secrets German Shepherd DogWell it has been 11 months now, I still don’t have time to train “Nizzy,” and I guess now I’m keeping her. LOL. She still goes everywhere with me.  I can’t tell you the number of places she has been with me, or the number of dogs and people we met, or the number of green belts and parks we have stopped at.   I’m sure we have been to the store, the dry cleaners, the car wash, the bank, the pet store and everywhere else I go on a daily basis a couple hundred times now.  It dawned on me the other day while I had not had any time to train “Nizzy”, I took her everywhere I went and my only rule was she can not be a jerk.  We have accomplished this and “Nizzy” has somehow gotten very well trained in the process despite me.

“Nizzy” has taught me that the number one dog training secret is to take your dog everywhere and don’t let them be a jerk. 

DOG TRAINING SECRET

“Take your dog everywhere you go and don’t let it be a JERK!”

 

 

 


JUMPING DOG

DOG JUMPING

DOG JUMPING

dog jumpingDog Jumping is frustrating to say the least.  I get calls about dog jumping all the time and how to get a dog to stop jumping.

First we should discuss how to prevent dog jumping in the first place.

DOG JUMPING HOW TO PREVENT IT

Preventing Dog Jumping starts with realizing that dogs jump for attention and because they like it.  Dog Jumping also happens typically when there is a lot of excitement 

Some of the ways dog owners reinforce their dog’s jumping unintentionally is first off by giving the dog attention when the dog jumps on them.  Make sure not to pet or praise your dog when jumping.  You must ignore your dog or give some king of a mildly unpleasant correction for jumping.  Here are some ways to help prevent your dog from jumping.

  • Keep a leash on your dog to correct the dog
  • Step on the leash to correct the dog from jumping and to stop the dog from being able to jump up.
  • Keep the excitability down especially when you first come home.
  • Don’t accidentally reinforce your dog for jumping by petting, or showing attention when your dog is jumping.
  • Turn away from your dog when it jumps and walk away.  This is known as Negative Punishment P- and this is where you take away something the dog wants to get the dog to change its behavior.
  • Teach your dog an incompatible behavior that can replace jumping.  an example of teaching an incompatible behavior to jumping is a sit stay command.

DOG OBEDIENCE TRAINING TO CORRECT JUMPING

JUMPING DOG

One of the best things you can do to correct jumping without having to punish your dog is to train your dog in basic obedience commands. Dog Obedience Training can prevent and correct many behavior problems even if the training is not directly dealing with the dog jumping.

Using a dog training marker training system, mark and reward each time your dog gets down or stops jumping.  you can also begin to put that behavior on cue or command.  I use the word “OFF.”  every time your dog gets down, say off, mark and reward.

Dog Obedience Training and teaching your dog to sit, lay down, stay, come when called, go to your bed or place, walk nice on a loose leash, these are dog training commands that every dog should be taught and every dog should be reliable with these basic commands.

You can interrupt dog jumping and give your dog a dog obedience training command such as sit stay, or down stay to interrupt dog jumping and have the dog do an incompatible behavior.  Your dog can not be committed to maintaining a dog training command such as “SIT STAY,” and jump on you or guests at the same time.

CORRECTING DOG JUMPING

dog jumping training

Preventing Dog Jumping should be your number one goal.  That begins by not letting your dog get excitable.  Keep your dog and the excitement level low.  Keep a leash on your dog to correct your dog.  Walk away from your dog when your dog jumps.  Teach an incompatible behavior that replaces jumping such as having the dog sit every time your dog wants to jump.

Corrections are just words for punishment.  Don’t let the word punishment scare you.  Punishment can be a mild annoyance or something mildly unpleasant.  You never want to over correct your dog.  You never want to use harsh punishment.  Corrections should be the least amount of force or pressure to get compliance from the dog.

All dogs can benefit from increased exercise.  take your dog for two 20-30 minute walks daily, and have at least one 30 minute play session throwing a toy to get your dog sprinting. Dogs are sprinters they are not long distance runners.  get your dog running and chasing toys for 30 minutes a day to help calm your dog down.

Lastly, don’t let other people get your dog all excited.  Correct people and guests who try to get your dog excited with their own human emotions and exuberance.  Tell people to ignore your dog.

For help with Dog Jumping  and any other Dog Training Issues Please Call Phoenix Dog Training (602) 769-1411


Marker Training Dog Training

DOG TRAINING WITH MARKERS

MARKER TRAINING IN DOG TRAINING: WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

Marker Training Dog Training

Marker Training is one of the most important aspects of dog training.  Marker Training is a communication system, a system of communication that pairs “markers” with behaviors, rewards, and consequences like a correction.

Phoenix Dog Training uses a Marker Training System with all of the clients we work with and all the dogs we help train.  Let me start by sharing the “markers” we use.

  • Clicker = Reward Marker
  • “Yes” = Reward Marker
  • “Ready” = Start Training Marker
  • “Ah Ah” = No Reward Marker
  • “Good” = Keep Going or Keep Doing What You Are Doing (Duration) Marker
  • “Break” = Done Training Marker

MARKER TRAINING CUES

A “Marker” used in Dog Training as a System of Marker Training, is a way to communicate important information to the dog during training.  These “markers” or signals are very powerful when used correctly.

A “marker” can be auditory, visual, tactile, and can even be a smell.  Typically the two most common markers are the word “YES” or a “CLICKER.”  The other most common “marker” is “GOOD.”

The “marker” starts out with NO POWER.  In psychology and behaviorism, and when talking about learning theory and Operant Conditioning, the “marker” starts out as a neutral stimulus, meaning it has no value or no association.

REWARD MARKERS IN MARKER TRAINING

Marker Training Yes reward

Start with a typical “Reward Marker,” such as “Yes.”  Initially the word “Yes” means nothing to a dog.  However if we say “Yes” and then immediately give a food reward after saying yes, and we do this many times such as 50 times in a row, “yes” give a treat, “yes” give a treat, and keep repeating this over and over, the dog starts to learn that the word “Yes” signals to the dog that it will be getting a treat or food reward. by pairing the word “yes” with a treat every time in quick succession, the dog will now understand that “yes” means treat. 

Once the dog has been conditioned to the marker, (classical conditioning, or associative learning,) we can use the word “yes” to mark a desired behavior and that communicates to the dog immediately that the behavior gets a reward.

At this point, our marker has value once conditioned.  the food or the reward is the primary reinforcer.  The Marker Training marker word “yes” now is no longer a neutral stimulus but now is a conditioned stimulus.  The marker training marker word of “yes” becomes the conditioned reinforcer of the primary reinforcer, i.e., food.

That is the science behind marker training, but it is really simple.  We condition the dog that “yes” means treat by pairing the word “yes” with a treat many times until the dog knows that when we say “yes” a treat is coming.  “Yes” becomes the reward marker.  we say “yes” to mark the correct behavior and signal to the dog that it gets a treat for that behavior.

The advantage to using markers in training dogs is that marker training improves the clarity of communication between the dog and the dog owner or trainer.  Marker Training allows those who are training their dog to have great timing.

Timing is extremely important in dog training. Marker Training gives you an advantage in timing.  In dog training you have about zero to a half a second to pair a reward with the dog’s behavior for the dog to “connect the dots,” or understand that the treat was given because of the behavior. 

An example would be when perhaps we are teaching a dog to sit.  you have zero to a half a second to get the food reward in the dogs mouth once the dog sits.  Most Dog Owners and and many Dog Trainers are just not that fast.  If you don’t use a marker training system, you might be very late with the reward.  If you are late the dog will still like the reward, but the dog will have no idea that it was rewarded for the behavior it just did.  That’s right if you reward your dog two seconds after your dog sits, your dog will not associate the reward with the behavior.  TIMING IS EVERYTHING!

So far we have only been talking about a reward marker.  There are other markers we use in marker training when training dogs. Let’s look at some other markers that are typically used.

NO REWARD MARKER IN MARKER TRAINING

marker training no reward marker

A No Reward marker is exactly what it says.  in Marker Training a No Reward Marker signals to the dog that what it did is not correct and it will not be getting a reward.  I use the word “Ah Ah” in my dog training.  I have heard others use the word “Nope” or “No” as a No Reward Marker.

As with the Reward Marker “yes,” “Ah Ah” has no meaning or power until it is paired with or conditioned with something.  In this case it will be pared with the removal of a reward that the dog wants.  I condition the No Reward marker of “Ah Ah” by presenting food, and pull it away from the dog before the dog can get the food.  I say “Ah Ah” when pulling the food away. This also has to be done with great timing and with many repetitions in order for the dog to begin to understand that “Ah Ah” means it won’t get a reward, try again.  Once you have a conditioned No Reward Marker you can use this powerful marker to modify a dog’s behavior. 

KEEP GOING MARKER IN MARKER TRAINING

marker training keep going marker

Another marker I use in marker training is the word or marker, “Good.”  just like “yes” the word “Good” has no meaning and no value at all until paired with a reward many times until the dog associates “good” with getting a treat.” 

“Good” as a marker is used to signal or mark a behavior that we want the dog to keep doing.  The most used application for a Keep Going Marker in Marker Training is for duration of a “stay” command.  We say “Good” and give a treat to the dog who is maintaining a stay to reinforce that staying is what we want.

START TRAINING MARKER IN MARKER TRAINING

Marker Training Start Training Marker

Some trainers like to signal or mark to the dog that training is beginning.  Many do this by always saying “Ready” and getting the dog’s eye contact each and every time they start training.  This can be a great and powerful marker to signal to the dog that now is time to begin working.  

STOP TRAINING MARKER IN MARKER TRAINING

Marker Training Stop Training Marker

I like to signal to my dog when my dog is done training or done with a specific command or training exercise.  I use the stop training marker word of “Break” to signal or mark to my dog the end of training or exercise finished.

For example, let’s say my dog is on a Down Stay Command.  When I say “Break” my dog releases itself from the command and begins playtime.  Every time the dog is done, I say “Break” and I play with my dog.

Try Marker Training if you have never used markers.  for more information contact Phoenix Dog Training at (602) 769-1411


Phoenix Dog Trainer Operant condition dog behavior science of how dogs are trained

HOW DOGS LEARN

HOW DOGS LEARN

OPERANT CONDITIONING THE SCIENCE BEHIND DOG TRAINING: HOW DOGS LEARN AND ARE TRAINED

how dogs learn operant conditioningHow dogs learn might be the most important question you could ask.  At Phoenix Dog Training, our  approach to dog obedience training is based on years of study. As one of the foremost students of dog behavior, our Phoenix Dog Behaviorist has seen firsthand the effect of a combination of Operant Conditioning, Positive Reinforcement and Negative Reinforcement, and has made these techniques the centerpieces of his training philosophy, which specializes in the elimination of aggression, fears, anxieties and phobias in dogs.

HOW DOGS LEARN 

At Phoenix Dog Training we use about 90% positive reinforcement and about 10% negative reinforcement.  I also use negative punishment which is the removal of something the dog wants to decrease or stop unwanted behavior.  An example of negative punishment is to take away your kids WiFi password until they do their homework.  You are trying to stop or decrease the child’s procrastination.  With a dog it might be removing a treat or a toy.  This is one of the many ways how dogs learn.

I personally do not use positive punishment because I do not believe that how dogs learn has to be to experience fear, pain and intimidation to be taught. But I do use negative reinforcement, but in a unique way.

This being the case, Here at Phoenix Dog Training we are always eager to counteract the flashing red lights some people see when they hear the word “negative reinforcement.” Don’t let the term scare you, because in truth it isn’t negative at all! In fact it is non-aversive, as we don’t believe any dog should be trained with fear, pain or intimidation. As an example consider the following:

  • I am walking a dog and want to turn right
  • The dog wants to continue going straight
  • I tap the dog on the shoulder to get its attention so it can turn with me
  • I stop tapping on the dog’s shoulder when the dog performs the wanted behavior.

HOW DOGS LEARN 

That is all there is to negative reinforcement!  People often confuse negative reinforcement with punishment.  the two are not the same.  Negative reinforcement increases and or strengthens behavior.  Punishment stops or decreases a behavior.

Traditionally, how dogs learn and the use of negative reinforcement has been to apply an unpleasant stimulus to the dog, and then help the dog to do the behavior in order to remove the unpleasantness.  The dog works to turn off the unpleasant stimulus, or to avoid it all together.  Different trainers will use negative reinforcement differently.  How unpleasant the stimulus is varies from trainer to trainer.

My experience and work with how dogs learn has shown me that negative reinforcement really does not need to be a true aversive.  To me when I think aversive, I think pain or unpleasant.  In fact, here is the dictionary definition of aversive:

” aversive. adjective. Causing avoidance of a thing, situation, or behavior by using an unpleasant or punishing stimulus, as in techniques of behavior modification.”

I have personally developed a system based on how dogs learn and the use of negative reinforcement that uses a non aversive tactile or touch sensation that is nuetral.  The tactile or touch sensation is not unpleasent, demonstrated by the dog’s behavior, there is no avoidance.  The tactile or touch stimulus becomes a tactile cue, prompt, or command that is paired with both auditory and visual cues, adding another layer of communication to both verbal commands and hand signals.  I use multiple modalities of communication with dogs for more complete understanding and clarity of communication. 

What the dog experiences is very light non aversive tapping on its neck while being given a verbal command along with a visual command (hand signal.) When the dog does the behavior, the light tapping stops.  Rather than being an aversive, it is neutral touch, or a non painful tactile touch.

I have seen mothers speaking to their children who did not respond to them, touch the child on the shoulder to get the child’s attention with light touch and to get them to follow through on what the mother was asking.  That is non aversive negative reinforcement.

Another example of non aversive negative reinforcement that people experience is the seat-belt indicator.  If you don’t put your seat-belt on, there will be a sound going off or a light going off until you fasten the belt.  Once you do the behavior, the sound goes away.  There was no pain, at most it was an annoyance.  

HOW DOGS LEARN 

There are total positive reinforcement only trainers that can not conceive of non aversive negative reinforcement.  They like to say their way of training is scientific, but they fail to discuss ALL of the science.  The total positive reinforcement trainers want to claim how dogs learn is only with positive reinforcement.  They refuse to correct a dog. One of the reasons they can not conceive of non aversive humane negative reinforcement is because they have ZERO experience with it. They are giving their opinion on something that they have never done.

By combining all of the aforementioned aspects of how dogs learn, Phoenix Dog Training Dog Trainers are able to make their intentions clear to puppies and dogs. By opening the lines of communication Phoenix Dog Training is able to provide a low stress atmosphere for puppy training and canine training while getting lasting results in a fraction of the time of other Phoenix dog trainers.

We are committed to how dogs learn and providing dog training in Phoenix that offer the least amount of stress and the quickest results. Remember, we are training you as well as your dog, and the knowledge and insight you’ll gain into your dog’s mind and regarding the techniques with which to communicate your wishes will result in lasting good behavior and a more balanced home life. 

Thanks for reading and hopefully you have learned a little something about how dogs learn.

Phoenix Dog Training are the best dog trainers we have found in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. Their Dog Behaviorist has personally helped us with our dogs as we had a tough case. Our dogs are doing great and we would never go to anyone else to train our dogs. The people, service and knowledge of training dogs is the best we have seen by far! I would recommend them to all my friends and family! Thank you!– Greg and Jody Fossen


Canine Body Language Dog Training

Canine Body Language-Dog Aggression-Dog Anxiety

Canine Body Language For Dog Aggression and Fearful Dog Training

Phoenix Dog Aggrssion Trainers“Understanding Canine Body Language is critical to helping modify fearful and aggressive behavior,” states, Harvard Animal Behaviorist and Director of Dog Training Phoenix.  Here are bullet points and a crash course in understanding what calming and stress signals are.

Canine Body Language Signs of stress or arousal – taken in context and happen together or in groups. None of these happen in a vacuum.

 

  • Yawning Dog Training Phoenix Canine Body Language
  • Penis crowning – often around food or resources (can be toy, place or person), Stress is an arousal level. Sequence that leads to aggression. No female equivalent.
  • Teeth chattering – sign of arousal, sign of frustration or aggression. Can happen when excited to play.
  • Sweaty paws
  • Lip licking – happens in succession, sign of stress which is different than when hungry or after a meal. Repeated multiple times.
  • Stress vocalization – whining, dry shallow cough or part of high pitched, trill sound, dry pant
  • Tails – mean nothing, except when curled under body which is sign of stress. Must look at breed to know what normal tail looks like in order to tell if a sign
  • Chuffing – usually see in boxers. Cheek puffing or a blowing sound coming from mouth.
  • Dilated pupils – must be taken in contest of lighting in the room. Look for soft eyes with dilated pupils. “Whale eye” eye is dilated, hard can see a sliver of white in eye, usually followed by a bite. Whole body goes stiff and still, then Whale eye then bite.
  • Not eating – first signal that dog is in stress and should be alerted. If try to give a treat they don’t take it.
  • Urination – submissive urination, or marking of territory. They urinate on all things, including people, resources to feel comfortable.
  • Ears pinned back – again subject to breed of dog. “Bunny ears”.
  • Freezes – watch mouth. Body goes stiff, hard eyes, ears can go back/down along head, very still, mouth starts to close very slowly. Bite usually follows. This happens with a bunch of other stress. Lots of energy coming from animal.
  • Pacing – different than being interested in something. They quickly walk back and forth. Lots of energy being expelled by animal. Doesn’t have to be in a pattern, can be all over the place. Other stress signals accompany this like stiff body, vocalization, dilated pupils, pulling on lead.
  • Slow of little movement – looks like a lump. Non stressed dogs move around.
  • Stiff posture – excessive shedding. Example of this happening is when dog goes to vet.
  • Stretching – not normal I’ve just gotten up and need to stretch my bones/muscles, but happens in a sequence with other stress.
  • Trembling
  • Muscle ridge – hard to see but can watch it happen around top of orbital eye bone and at top of mouth.
  • Urogenital check out – during or just after a time of stress, dog will make sure all of the private parts are still there.
  • Excessive salivation – depending on breed or what is happening. Can happen in arousal state like waiting for food so must be taken in context. Part of other stressors.
  • Shallow or fast breathing – looks like holding breath and must be taken in context with environment

Canine Body Language Calming signals/appeasement signals/non-aggressive intent – Offer and acceptance signals Canine Body Language Dog Training Phoenix Teaches To Help Train Out Dog Aggression and Dog Anxiety

  • Look away – an active turn of head. Chin up and turn your head. Can be used for having dog not jump.
  • Paw raises – can be done either standing or sitting. I mean you no harm.
  • Sniffing – an area after a prolonged period in that area
  • Sneezing – really likes what you are doing, like training and they get so excited then sneeze in succession
  • Scratching – must be taken in context
  • Blinking – to calm themselves or others. We can use to show them we mean no harm
  • Shake off – most common calming signal. Can start at backside and goes all the way off. Very animated when it happens.

Canine Body Language Both calming and stress signals

  • Yawning
  • Lip/nose licking
  • Sitting or lying down
  • Pacing in an arc

Canine Body Language Distance increasing signals – back off, social distance, sub threshold that means you must intervene, read these signals before aggression begins.

  • Marking territory
  • Hard eyes – sharp line between pupil and iris
  • Showing teeth – C shape, molars not showing, antagonistic pucker, full frontal lip curl
  • Ears alert and forward – depends on breed
  • Tense body or face
  • Height posture height seeking – very significant, muzzle punch
  • Lowered head and neck
  • Excessive barking – low and fast. Not like the “you’re home” high pitched fast yipping bark or the alarm barking.

If you have a fearful or aggressive dog contact Phoenix Dog Training and Harvard Educated Dog Behaviorist for help Now toll free (602) 769-1411

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Phoenix Dog Aggression Trainers

PHOENIX DOG TRAINING | DOG AGGRESSION

PHOENIX DOG TRAINING | DOG AGGRESSION | HOW TO STOP DOG AGGRESSION

Dog aggression and how to stop dog aggression, and what to do to stop your dog from being aggressive, is what most of my calls are as a Dog Behaviorist. At Phoenix Dog Training, about 80% or more of the dog training problems we deal with is dog aggression. It can be heartbreaking to have a family pet that you love and that are great in so many different ways, but perhaps your dog is aggressive towards people, or your dog is aggressive towards other dogs. What can be particularly scary and heartbreaking about dog aggression is when you have multiple dogs fighting in the house. Our Dog Aggression Training Phoenix Rehabilitation Programs are the most successful aggression behavior modification programs in the country.

Phoenix Dog Aggrssion Trainers

There are various types of dog aggression. Here are just a few types of dog aggression.

  • Fear Aggression
  • Territorial Aggression
  • Dog on Dog Aggression
  • Dog Aggression Towards Humans
  • Food Aggression
  • Toy Aggression
  • Fence or Gate Aggression
  • Dominance Aggression

The most common type of  Dog aggression is fear aggression. Almost all aggression is fear related aggression. Animals, including dogs, only go into “fight or flight” when there is a perceived threat. Many of the above listed types of aggression have fear as their primary motivator. Some dogs are afraid they will loose their food. Some dogs are afraid they will loose a bone or a favorite toy. Some dogs are afraid that their space or territory is in danger or being threatened. Some dogs fear that their owners are in danger or may experience a threat.

In many cases of aggression it can be difficult to see any real reason for the dog’s aggression. There are about 3% to 7% of dogs with genetic and neurochemical contributing factors to their aggression. This type of aggression can be the most difficult to deal with. In this type of aggression there may be no “real” threat to the dog yet the dog feels there is a threat and becomes reactively aggressive.

The number one goal is to properly assess the type of dog aggression and all of the many contributing factors that might play a role in the dog’s aggression. Old school dog training used to just assume basically any dog that was aggressive was just trying to be “alpha” and was showing dominance. After many decades of scientific research and studies on dog aggression, today we know that is rarely the case. In over 30 years as a dog aggression expert and dog behaviorist who specializes in dog aggression and has worked with and helped some of the most aggressive dogs in the country and abroad, I can honestly say true dominance aggression is very rare, and todays science and studies on aggression in dogs concurs with what has been my experience.

As a result of the latest scientific studies and research on dog aggression, we know today that the last thing you want to do is punish, harshly correct with pain, fear or intimidation, or dominate your dog with an ‘alpha roll.’ These outdated old school dog training methods have never show any long term success in rehabilitating an aggressive dog with lasting results and lasting success. These harsh methods actually add more stress and pressure, along with adding more fear to the dog that is already experiencing something it finds threatening. We want to teach the dog that there is no threat, that the dog can be calm and safe. These old school correction based Dog Obedience Training methods that are harsh do the opposite. We often see other trainers have limited success for a week or two until the dog then snaps and becomes even more aggressive, and often times the dog can become aggressive toward the owner who has been wrongly taught to give a harsh correction to their dog. This is what for real serious cases of dog aggression you need a dog behaviorist.

Phoenix Dog Training has the highest success rate when it comes to treating and rehabilitating dog aggression anywhere in the country. A lot of what Phoenix Dog Training and our Internationally Acclaimed Harvard Dog Behaviorist do is fix and treat aggressive dogs that other dog trainers cannot rehabilitate. We have rehabilitated many dogs that some top trainers and celebrity TV dog trainers have not had lasting success with. Our approach and our system to treat and rehabilitate dog aggression is based in the latest science, and research on dog aggression behavior modification, counterconditioning, and desensitization, along with the latest science in canine cognition.   At Phoenix Dog Training our Harvard Educated Dog Behaviorist specifically studied canine cognition at Harvard University and used that knowledge and education to create what is today’s most successful dog aggression rehabilitation training system.

If you have a dog with an aggression problem call today to schedule an in depth 2-3 hour behavioral assessment and evaluation. After completion of our behaviorist assessment you will be provided with a treatment plan and behavior modification program that we can begin to work on that day to bring about the needed change in your dog’s aggression.

Call today to schedule your AGGRESSION EVALUATION appointment (602) 769-1411

 


Dog Training Phoenix

PHOENIX DOG TRAINING | PHOENIX DOG BEHAVIORIST

PHOENIX DOG TRAINING | PHOENIX DOG BEHAVIORIST |SEVERE DOG OBEDIENCE AND  BEHAVIOR

Even The Most Severe Dog Behavior Issues Are No Match For Phoenix Dog Training and Phoenix Dog Behaviorist

Dog Training Phoenix

There are few names as celebrated in the world of dog obedience training as that of Phoenix Dog Training. While the industry is home to many amateurs masquerading as dog trainers, Phoenix Dog Training has made the study of dog behavior and the development of a unique and proven canine training philosophy their lifetime’s work. Harvard-trained and world-renowned as an Applied Animal Behaviorist, Phoenix Dog Training have made a career of consistently rehabilitating dogs suffering from the most severe of behavioral problems. Issues such as severe aggression, fear-based behavior, anxiety and phobias often get the best of pet owners and even experienced dog trainers, but for Phoenix Dog Training and their Applied Animal Behaviorist, they are par for the course.

Our Phoenix Dog Trainer is a committed student of the true science of canine learning theory, dog aggression is not going to be rehabilitated and cured with positive reinforcement only, that is why our Phoenix Dog Trainers and Phoenix Dog Behaviorist use both positive and negative reinforcement for a balanced approach to dog training and a true understanding of the science behind learning theory. This has allowed our Dog Trainers in Phoenix to develop our patented Gentle Touch™ method of dog training. Based upon the principles of Operant and Classical Conditioning in order to deal with issues including:

  • Aggression
  • Fear
  • Anxiety
  • Phobias
  • Not listening
  • Potty training
  • Digging and chewing
  • Jumping on people
  • Defecating in improper areas
  • Jumping on furniture
  • Pulling on the leash
  • Dominance
  • Running away
  • Stealing things
  • Scratching doors
  • Begging and whining
  • Aggression in dogs
  • Fighting with other dogs
  • Crotch sniffing
  • Bad car behavior
  • Separation anxiety
  • Fearfulness and shyness
  • Marking
  • Chasing cars
  • Chasing kids
  • Chasing cats

Dog Training Phoenix believes that in-home private dog training is the most effective and fastest way to train your dog: after all, the problems that are occurring with your dog occur at home, so what better place to address these issues than where they take place? Another important aspect of the training Dog Training Phoenix provide is that you are being trained along with your dog. The goal is for your dog to work as effectively with you as he/she does when working with an animal behaviorist. You’ll learn how to communicate your intentions to your dog in a way that engenders understanding and results.

Canine training and puppy training need not be stressful or confusing for the dog involved: to the contrary, even when dealing with severe behavioral issues it can be a positive experience when based on a true understanding of dog behavior theory. Discover the true essence of proper dog training from Phoenix Dog Training and our acclaimed Animal Behaviorist.

For more Phoenix Dog Training Dog Behavior and Dog Training Articles, Visit our Phoenix Dog Training Blog.

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Phoenix Dog Training History of Dog Training

PHOENIX DOG TRAINING | A BRIEF HISTORY OF DOG TRAINING

PHOENIX DOG TRAINING

Phoenix Dog Training and Phoenix Dog Trainers Providing Dog Obedience Training Phoenix Az and Phoenix Puppy Training

A Brief History of Dog Training: What You Need To Know

HISTORY OF DOG TRAINING; This article will be about dog training. Specifically, it will be a brief history of dog training.  Dogs have lived and worked with humans for as long as history can recall, providing us with companionship, security and assistance. The idea of training a dog is not new; in fact, dogs have been helping us to hunt, track, guard and herd livestock, as well as assist the disabled for centuries. However, even in our modern world, humans still cannot agree on which methods or theories are best to train a dog to behave as a pet. Most of the disagreements on how to train a dog come from the two major camps of dog training methods: Force Extremists and Positive Reinforcement Extremists.

The Rise of Negative-Enforcement Only Training in The History of DogTraining

As far as the history of dog training goes, During the Great Depression, dog training began to grow in national popularity. At this time, food was scarce for humans, much less dogs, so trainers did not use edible treats to reward a dog for good behavior. Instead, good behaviors were rewarded with praise and undesirable behaviors were corrected with a small punishment, such as a quick jerk on a choke chain. This would condition the dog to avoid performing behaviors that cause pain.

Phoenix Dog Training The History of Dog Training William Koehler

One  cannot talk about the history of dog training without mentioning William Kohler. The most popular pioneer in this dog training method was William Koehler, author of the best-selling dog obedience book The Koehler Method of Dog Training from 1962 – 1982. Koehler believed that training was a battle of wills and that it was harmful to dogs to allow them to go without correction for bad behaviors. While Koehler was a great trainer (you may have seen some of his four-legged students in Disney’s The Incredible Journey) he did not fully accept animal behavior theories. He assumed that dogs would understand why they were being punished and learn from it, as a rational person might. Anyone who has trained a dog knows that a dog does not learn behavior in the same way a human might, though they most certainly take cues from well-behaved owners.

Koehler’s influence  and his status in the history of dog training, remains very evident in some of the popular training methods of today, especially those that insist that dogs have a pack mentality and are always involved in a conspiracy to take dominance from the humans. Here is an example of how this mentality is way of misunderstanding a dog: if your dog pulls you along on walks and you never take the time to teach him to walk with you, it is not the dog’s fault for being dominant. He likely has a desire to see and smell the world around him and does not understand that he must walk along with you
rather than do as he pleases. This is not because he thinks he controls you, but by not setting rules and boundaries for the way your dog interacts with the world while on a leash, you effectively teach him that it is okay to pull you along. You do end up following him when he pulls you, so he is assured that you will be there with him while he does whatever he wants. What the dog really needs is to be trained to walk nicely because it is expected of him and in his best interests, and he will not learn that on his own.

A Generation of Only Positive Reinforcement Training in More Recent History of Dog Training 

Phoenix Dog Training Clicker TrainingThe generation that came after Koehler,  and earlier history of dog training,  in the 1980s championed a more positive dog training style that focused on rewarding good behavior with food or toys rather than correcting mistakes. One of the founders of this movement, veterinarian Ian Dunbar, started the then-unusual practice of puppy socialization, off-leash training and the lavish use of treats for rewards. Total Positive Reinforcement remains popular today, but unfortunately is unreliable when used alone and without any negative reinforcement whatsoever. This approach is fairly laissez-faire (hands-off) because it requires you to literally wait for the dog to decide on its own to behave in the desired way without any guidance from you. For example, if you tell your untrained dog to “sit” using only positive reinforcement, you must literally wait for him to decide to sit and then lavishly praise him when he does. He does deserve a reward for sitting, but if he does not understand what the command means to begin with, then you have not taught him anything. By the time he sits down, he has forgotten the cue “sit” altogether, and perceives that you are randomly giving him a treat. Not only does it take a long time for the dog to do what he is told, but he also may get frustrated when he does not have a clear expectation of what you want. Appropriate negative reinforcement would help in this case by allowing you to say the command “sit” at the same time as you push the dog’s rear end onto the ground. Once the dog sits, you can remove your hand from his behind and reward him with praise or a treat. Repetition of this activity allows the dog to connect the word “sit” with the physical act of sitting.

Attempting to use a clicker and treats to train a dog is only effective in very controlled environments. Your dog may be motivated to sit and stay for a treat while in his own home, but the second you have him sit and stay in an uncontrolled environment and he sees something more interesting, his desire to interact with that distraction (chasing a cat, wrestling with another
dog, stealing a child’s ice cream, etc.) is going to be much stronger than his desire to have a treat. The fact that you have a polite dog at home means absolutely nothing when his behavior is out of your control where it matters: in public.

Balanced Dog Training Method Used by Phoenix Dog Training

Dog Training Phoenix Balanced Dog Training

Balanced Dog Training

No matter what the history of dog training shows us, it is true today that Negative Reinforcement, when used in conjunction with positive reinforcement does not mean pain, punishment or harsh corrections. Instead, in the Balanced Dog Training method, used at Phoenix Dog Training, negative reinforcement is a way to show the dog what it needs to do. For example, when you train a horse to turn to the left when the left rein is pulled, you are essentially using the annoying sensation of the bit in the horse’s mouth to show the horse what you want it to do. The horse reacts to alleviate the annoyance of the bit. Conversely, if you respond to undesirable behaviors by giving in to them, you only allow your dog to control you. Compare this to the analogy of a child throwing a tantrum in a store after his mother does not buy him a candy bar. If the mother gives in after his tantrum and gets the kid some candy, the child realizes that he has just taught his mother a new trick. He now assumes he can always have his way by throwing a tantrum. This same principle applies with dogs.

Phoenix Dog Training is able train dogs quickly and effectively because we take the time to understand why your dog acts out and work to motivate a total behavior change both in you as the owner and in your dog. Our Balanced Dog Training approach and method combines all aspects of learning theory and is constantly improving. As our knowledge grows, our toolbox of dog training tools expands, allowing us to find the right fit for each unique animal we meet. We also give you the tools you need to be the kind of owner your dog needs and provide him with the structure and attention he needs to continue to behave as he should with our lifetime guarantee.

For more information on Phoenix Dog Training and our training methods or to learn more about dog training from Harvard Educated Dog Behaviorist, call (602) 769-1411 today.

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phoenix dog training top 10 mistakes dog owners make

Phoenix Dog Training | Top 10 Dog Training Mistakes

Phoenix Dog Training | Top 10 Dog Training Mistakes

Dog Training and Dog Behavior Problems can oftentimes be avoided when dog owners know the critical do’s and don’ts in how they create, add to or contribute to a misbehaved and poorly trained puppy or dog.

The #1 Biggest Mistake Dog Owners Make is Not Getting Dog Obedience Training For Their Dog or Puppy.  95% or more of the typical dog training and dog behavior problems could be eliminated with just a few Dog Training lessons.  Call Dog Training Phoenix for details and pricing for our Phoenix Dog Obedience Training or our Phoenix puppy training now 602-769-1411

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Keri Grunert
Keri Grunert
05:11 18 Jan 18
Phoenix Dog Training is Phenomenal!! From the very beginning we knew we were in good hands. They worked so well with our whole family. Getting the kids involved in the training was brilliant. We would definitely recommend this company.
Tyler Thompson
Tyler Thompson
15:37 30 Nov 17
I recently called Phoenix dog training to train my out of control hyper Australian Shepherd. The training was excellent and the service was A+ all the way. I have used two trainers before that could not help with the pulling on walks when any dog came by and jumping on guests. Now "Molly" knows to go to her "Place" when the door bell rings. Walks are now enjoyable. I can even take her off leash and she stays right with me. I can not thank you enough.Tyler Thompson
Jose Rivas
Jose Rivas
21:11 25 Jul 17
My wife and I highly recommend Phoenix Dog Training. Our dog, a Labrador Retriever/German Shepard Mix, (Mr. Pickles) was trained last summer and we could not be more happy with the results. Mr. Pickles has been an excellent dog ever since his training. Everyone that comes in contact with our dog is amazed by his obedience and uncanny maturity even though he is not even three years old. He has acted perfectly on an international flight in-cabin, in the grocery store, restaurants and practically any situation one can imagine. My wife and I have Phoenix Dog Training to thank for training our dog to be the most well behaved dog we have ever seen or met. Phoenix Dog Training understands dog behavior and knows how to train a dog to meet the needs of their owners. Phoenix Dog Training utilizes empathetic, efficient, and effective methodologies in training dogs and we give them an emphatic recommendation!
Charles F Frost
Charles F Frost
20:30 21 Sep 17
I was referred to Phoenix Dog Training by our Veterinarian because of our Boxer Max, and his aggression.Phoenix Dog Training and their Harvard schooled Animal Behaviorist did an incredible job helping myself and my family bring Max under control. We realize we will need to manage Max's behavior for as long as he is with us, but now we have the skills and the tools to keep Max and everyone happy and safe. Thank you for all the great training help and support with our dog Max.
The German Star Lord
The German Star Lord
06:53 20 Sep 17
I have always trained all of my dogs myself. I have never had a dog I could not train. My current dog Jasper is the exception. I truly thought my dog had a mental problem. Thanks to Phoenix Dog Training I no longer think Jasper is mental. Jasper just needed his owner trained. I would recommend Phoenix Dog Training to anyone needing professional dog training.
B B
B B
03:45 17 Sep 17
I am so grateful I found Phoenix Dog Training. I live up in North Scottsdale and have a large yard. We get a lot of wild animals that come onto our property. Coyotes, Havelina, Bob Cats Mountain Lion, you name it. The problem I was having was my dog Skip would not come when called. No matter what we did he would not come when called. He would call me when there were no distractions. He would come when nothing was going on. But up another dog or another person or another animal is there, he will not come for anything! I have tried several other dog trainers in Scottsdale. They all promised me they could get my dog to come, and they did a great job getting my dog to listen to me when there were no distractions. But if there's another animal, they were not able to get my dog to come when called. Out of frustration and skeptical, I called Phoenix dog training. They said they had a money back guarantee. I figured if there was ever a time they would have to honor their money back guarantee it would be with myself and my dog Skip. To my absolute amazement, the dog trainer from Phoenix Dog Training was able to get Skip to come with the distraction of another dog he brought with him within about 3 minutes! It was absolutely crazy!!! No one had been able to produce any results, and here they have skip coming when called with another dog around, skip would normally go crazy. But this time he was coming when called! I would definitely recommend Phoenix Dog Training!!! They saved my dog from being eaten from a Mountain Lion I'm sure!!!
Paras Dhankecha
Paras Dhankecha
06:03 19 Sep 17
I really want to thank you guys. Phoenix Dog Training has made my dogs life and my life so much better. I get to finally enjoy my dog. Walks are now a pleasure. She sits and stays when I tell her. When I call her to me, now she comes. I love the "place" command and that seems to be her favorite command too. I'm looking forward to the Polishing and Maintenance classes that Phoenix Dog Training offers after our completion of our private at home dog training lessons. Thank you again.
Numb Brrr
Numb Brrr
21:45 20 Sep 17
Phoenix Dog Training is AMAZING! They rehabilitated my aggressive PitBull when 3 other trainers failed and told me the only option was to euthanize my dog. Boy am I glad I did not listen to the other trainers and hired a real Dog Behaviorist. It is very different working with a professional Dog Behaviorist than just a Dog Trainer. It was worth the money and the time to save my dogs life. Definitely hire Phoenix Dog Training.
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