What is Positive Reinforcement Training?

One of the most common misconceptions about positive training is that all we do is throw cookies around and hope for the behavior to miraculously happen! This couldn’t be farther from the truth. What I am actually doing is manipulating the consequences for the animal to get the kinds of behaviors I want.

My training applies the same kinds of positive motivation techniques on dogs that are used for training dolphins, sea lions, sea otters and killer whales. As you can imagine, try physical or verbal compulsion on a killer whale (“No, no! Bad whale!”) and you just might end up as lunch!

Behavior is reward driven. Dogs do what works. If lying on their backs, sneezing and wagging their tails while in the bathtub got them reinforced, they would do it!

Positive training can be utilized to overcome many fears or aggression and to help your dog reach his full potential. I stress building a positive reinforcement history with your dog, proper management skills (if your dog gets into the garbage, get one with a locking lid!) and various techniques to get the kinds of behaviors you want without resorting to compulsion, coercion or punishment.

Although I have a standard lesson plan, I work with each individual, based on their specific needs.

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