Since dog training is an unregulated industry, anyone can call themselves a trainer, with no requirement for education or certification, and no professional oversight or standards. The sad fact is that because of the lack of regulation, many uneducated trainers are using outdated methods that have no scientific basis or data behind them.
Fortunately, there are also many professional animal trainers who have chosen to use the many decades of behavioral science to call upon, and provide excellent training to their clients. I chose the Karen Pryor Academy because it is widely considered the most rigorous, data driven and science-based school for dog trainers. To remain in good standing with my certification, the Karen Pryor Academy holds me accountable to the highest standards of training and client care and requires me to complete many hours of continuing education and self-development. I am also a Certified Professional Dog Trainer through the Certification Council of Professional Dog Trainers. I am a serious, professional dog trainer with a commitment to excellence, client care, force-free and positive reinforcement training methods.
WHY POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT?
Because I believe what science tells me. Behavioral science has proven that pain and coercion-based training often elicits aggressive behavior as a side effect. Science also tells us that pain and fear inhibit learning. Force-free training means using only positive reinforcement methods to attain effective results.
I believe it is imperative to build and enhance the relationship between the handler and the animal and I believe the best way to do that is to educate myself and raise my standards above compulsion-based methods. I do not choose to use choke, prong, or shock collars in my training. I do not use “corrections,” but rather a scientific approach focused on positive reinforcement.