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I LOVE Monique Anstee's training advice! She is SO on the mark with this one (as usual)!


The Naughty Dogge
(Monique's training blog)

There is a push for people to hire Force-Free Dog Trainers. I find this odd.

Why not go to a trainer that has all types of training under their belt and will use the method best suited for that dog, in that moment? Every dog is different, and every dog learns a little bit differently.

Last week in my board and trains I got to train one dog that was a fearful little Chihuahua, who needed his confidence built all week. He got rewarded for all that he did right, and got his confidence boosted, and made to feel safe. His training could be defined as Force Free. Then my darling but terrified German Shepherd, who I finally just had to get on with training as she was never going to ‘like’ me nor anyone else, developed confidence and clarity when she lunged for a dog and got a minor but perfectly timed correction. She went from being jumpy and fearful, to almost relaxed, and calm. She was calmed by the boundary, and her eyes instantly looked at peace.

No two dogs are the same. Every dog has unique needs, their own set of baggage, and their own personalities and breed traits. One method does not fit all. As trainers, we must be willing to change and adapt as swiftly as the wind changes directions. And what was needed on Monday might be totally wrong for Tuesday - you need a trainer with an eye for reading body-language that knows the difference.

My gut tells me that this week my Chihuahua will need to hear the word “no’ and my sweet German Shepherd will now be in a place to take treats, get rewarded for all she does right, and have her confidence built. But this is just my plan and in no way means I am right. Only time will tell.

Train the dog you are training, and have all methods at your disposal and adapt as the dogs require...

Monique Anstee
Victoria, BC
 

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Its the same with horses. No two are the same.
 

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Kids, too. Boundaries and routine and clear expectations are the constant with all dogs, but how you communicate these things varies. Even in a family, the way I taught my Samantha did not work for my Bailey, and what I did with Bailey did not work with Patton, and what I am showing Patton sometimes works with Chief.

And for spouses, that's even more tricky ;)
 
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