Tag Archives: counterconditioning

An Open Letter to Pet Industry Representatives Regarding the Use of Shock in Animal Training, Management and Care: We now know enough to stop shocking our pets

Shocking pet dogs remains a common, if controversial, training practice worldwide. In this open letter, Pet Professional Guild (PPG) combines decades of research, the opinions of certified animal behaviorists, and the question of ethics to explain why using electric shock … Continue reading

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An Open Letter to County Commissioners re: Consumer Transparency – the Methods Used in Animal Training, Care and Management Will Protect Pets, Their Owners, Local Residents and the Public at Large

Introduction: The Importance of Transparency between Clients and Service Providers Frieden (2013) states that: “Free and open information empowers people to make informed choices and reduces the likelihood that misinformation or hidden information will endanger health.” It is not unusual and, … Continue reading

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Case Study: Introducing a New Dog to Resident Cats

I used clicker training to help introduce my newly adopted dog, Ness, to the four cats in my household. Ness was under-socialized and had no experience with cats prior to adoption. The cats had only occasional exposure to visiting dogs … Continue reading

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Are You Really Performing Classical Counterconditioning?

What do the following training descriptions have in common? “My dog’s afraid of strangers. But when she stops barking and makes eye contact with me, I give her a treat.” “I hold her foot. Then I give her a treat … Continue reading

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6 Ways to Prepare Your Dog for Fireworks Starting TODAY

Updated for 2016. Oh no. Noisy holiday rolling around again, and your dog is scared of fireworks? Even though it’s just a few days before the holiday, you can make a plan and take action to help your dog be less … Continue reading

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Quick Fix or Never Fix

When someone first calls me for help, they usually hope their pet behavior problem will be resolved in a couple of weeks. They have tried everything they can think of for themselves, watched TV trainers and scoured the internet. Now they have … Continue reading

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Loving the Vacuum Cleaner

Here’s a little video I made of my dogs’ response to the vacuum cleaner. Hurray for classical conditioning! As soon as any dog comes into my home, I start pairing any potentially scary sounds of human life with great stuff. Two … Continue reading

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Taming the Dreaded Oreckosaurus Rex

Some dogs run and hide at first sight of the vacuum cleaner or unleash a barrage of barking, lunging and biting at the dreadful thing. Others quickly identify the vacuum cleaner’s lair and the fear response begins as soon as … Continue reading

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Misconceptions of Counterconditioning Leash Reactive Dogs

Misconception #1 – Feeding a dog when they are barking or fearful reinforces the fear. Absolutely not true. You can only cause more fear by implementing more fear or pain. Fear trumps food, so if the dog is taking the … Continue reading

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