When I work with aggressive and reactive dogs, my protocol is about teaching the dog (and handler!) DRI and DRA behaviors first, because one cannot start the desensitization process without having solid foundation skills in place AND a relationship based on positive methods!
So what does that mean? DRI – Differential Reinforcement of Incompatible behaviors and DRA – Differential Reinforcement of Alternate behaviors.
DRI and DRA can encompass many different areas of your lives, from simple to perhaps right now, not so simple ways. For example, one of the triggers that my human aggressive dog Shadow (who started me on this path) had, was people leaning over – it didn’t matter if they were leaning over him or 300 feet away – he saw that body posture and whammo! So, I took that previously provoking “cue” (person bending over) and made it mean something else – back up and lie down. He couldn’t be launching and biting if he was backing up and lying down.
So, I will be taking YOUR dogs provoking stimuli and creating an alternate behavior for YOUR dogs special needs.
Because I know first hand what it’s like living with an aggressive dog, I’m here to help you wade through the process; from being scared to confident, while we also work on your dog!
I require certain foundation skills be in place for my R.E.W.A.R.D. Zone seminar and I created this online format to help you reach those goals, so we can get to the nitty gritty of the counterconditioning and desensitization processes and on the road to success.
This 7 week ONLINE group class – one hour per week to give you time to practice, will yield you many of the behaviors you’ll need to join in the seminar, spelling quicker and more lasting success with your reactive/aggressive dog. The first week of the session is predominately without the dog, but then you will have homework and I will email you the 34 page booklet.
Cost is $400.00. Don’t be scared about the word “group” – it’s online, so it’s safe!!!!
Even though all of your dogs have their own personal issues, I will be addressing all of them in this group class. We’ll learn from each other and get your creative juices flowing!
So what will we be working on?
- Door etiquette: teach your dogs to stay while you open doors (building and car doors) and wait until you call them through and then look back to you instantly upon entering the building/room.
- Eye contact
- Name recognition
- Bridge recognition (such as a clicker or the word “yes”)
- Loose leash walking *and* heeling
- Accepting tactile (petting)
- Accepting of other types of reinforcers (other than food)
- Sit, stand and down stays
- Recall amidst distractions
- Shaping and exercises to teach the dog to make the right choices
- Crate training – I may bend a little on the other behaviors listed above, but I cannot bend on crate training. After all, if you can’t safely crate your dog, where will you put he/she when we take turns and rotate dogs?
…and so much more!
Click here FMI on the REWARD Zone in general
Print these 3 forms: (and either mail or email all 3 to me)
1. AggressiveReactiveDogProtocol form, then
2. Registration Form (please be sure to read both pages and sign and initial where indicated in red), and
3. ChecklistAggression:reactivity – fill this one as completely as you can – the more detailed information you give me, the better I can design a program just for you.
Click here for the class schedule page
Click here to read about my journey with Shadow – the good, the bad, the ugly and the great!
We have been extremely pleased with the virtual training sessions we have taken with Pam Dennison. Pam was recommended to us by other clients, but geographic distance kept us from pursuing training. When Covid hit, Pam offered online classes and we decided to try them out. We have a reactive dog, Archie, and first took a 5 week trick class online. This was a helpful bonding experience, Archie learned several tricks and was often exhausted afterwards, and Pam helped us gain confidence and learn some training basics. We then enrolled in the virtual Pre-Reward Zone class. This was perfect for us because we could work with Archie in the safety of our home, without the triggers of the other dogs or a strange environment. We learned many helpful techniques for interacting with our dog and training him for different situations. Pam is impressive in her knowledge of dogs, humans (!), and training techniques and has the ability to work with multiple students online at once. She’s fun to work with as well! We and Archie have grown tons and look forward to continuing learning from Pam.
-Robbie, Sandy and Archie
(added 10/4/2020: Archie had a VERY GOOD day today, seeing dogs at different distances, chipmunks, and cars and paying attention to us the WHOLE TIME and not ever barking or freaking out!)
This is a very belated thank you for the online pre reward course myself and Monty attended. We really enjoyed it and it has helped me to build a better bond with him.
There are still days when he’s driving me crazy and I worry that I’m never going to be able to provide him with the right environment, but these moments are now, after taking your class, few and far between. I think the main teaching from the course and yourself I’ve learned is “to let go.” To see and accept Monty as he is. I think seeing other people in similar situation helped tremendously, as having a reactive dog can be very lonely.