Have More Fun with a Well-Trained Dog

Behavior Modification and Training Services

Dog Aggression

REACTIVITY

Undesireable Behaviors Around Home

CUSTOM Behavior Modification Training Solutions for Every Dog

Years of requests for behavior modification have shown me that most people mistake problem behaviors for stubbornness or willfulness in their dog. I even hear on occasion, “She knows better but does it anyway.” In using those labels, we are assuming that a dog’s brain is more sophisticated than it is.

Granted, some breeds are predisposed to stubborn behavior, and it’s appropriate given what they were bred for. However, more often than not our canine companions simply don’t understand what we’re asking of them. Context is everything to a dog. Even dogs who have a great Come at home are apt to behave differently at the park with squirrels, other dogs and passersby to distract them.

To successfully modify a problem behavior, we need to figure out what is reinforcing the undesirable behavior. After that we need to learn how to reinforce the desired behavior in all environments and situations. That means communicating clearly and consistently with our dogs. Don’t despair, I am here to create the plan of action and teach you and your dog how to move forward!

Request an Assessment or Complimentary 10-minute phone consult.

Please fill out the Your Canine Resource Behavior Assessment Information Form (docx) to prepare for the assessment.

Aggressive dogs can change will behavior modification

Aggression

Growling, barking, lunging, showing of teeth, snapping and biting – aggressive behavior in dogs can be classified in different ways, depending on what purpose the aggression serves.

From guarding of resources to biting the neighbor, I identify why your dog is showing aggressive behaviors at your initial assessment. I can provide several ideas to begin using immediately to diminish the severity of the behaviors, and provide a plan on how everyone can find relief.

My extensive knowledge of the neurology of aggression and research-based behavioral modification procedures go into every custom training plan. 

Reactivity

Reactivity in our dogs is commonly labeled as aggression. However, there is a difference in the what and how they are expressing. I will assist you with the assessment of reactivity behaviors vs aggressive responses, so you will be able to know your dog that much better!  The responses and modification may be quite similar in our approach.

Our dogs’ reactivity can provide a good deal of embarrassment in our lives. Other people interpret it as aggression, so we feel as though we need to explain that our dog is not ‘mean’. So why are they so reactive in the human environment? The aggressive responses that accompany reactivity mean there is often an overlap with the two. I will provide relief to both responses.

 Reactivity training involves the following:

  • Leash Manners: lunging and barking
  • Fence and Window Manners: rushing the barriers
  • Car Manners: embarrassing displays of barking and jumping in the car in parking lots or drive-thru situations
  • Door Manners: how does your dog greet guests, and would you like more structure
  • Separation Anxiety
  • Inappropriate Jumping
  • Demand and Attention Barking: the noise that has gotten your dog attention from you, and is going to keep it up until something else works better. Even alert barking can go too far. Our human tendency to bark with them in our request for them to hush
  • Arousal Control: When dogs excitement levels get so high they can not control their responses

While dogs don’t use language in the human sense, they’re communicating all the time. Rumps, heads, ears, legs and tails form their “words”, and they know how to translate this language intuitively. For dogs, posture can announce aggressive intent or shrinking modesty. As we work, you will learn how to read the basics of this language, with behavior modification right around the next corner!

Dog reactivity responds well to one-on-one training
Puppy training: Well socialized dogs are a joy around the house

Undesirable Behaviors In and Around Your Home

Communication with training is necessary to show your dog what is undesirable within your household, and make it desirable.

Relationships with our dogs are defined by how we have interacted with them toward the change we are seeking. Dogs are very tuned in to the action of others, exactly the reason they are SO very easy in cohabitation. However, when communication breaks down, and frustration takes over, remember it is the time to also remember how tuned in they are. The potential then exists for more anxiety and behavior issues to expand, or take hold.

I will assist you in building the trust and communication with training cues that are necessary to develop a cohesive relationship for you and your dog. You will lose the frustration, when you gain communication!

Since our dogs can’t do anything wrong, the mirror always turns back to our more sophisticated brain to determine what is needed to change the behavior. Oftentimes, we must be willing to change old behavior patterns we have, to ensure our dogs experience behavior changes that are more desirable.

Behavior and Training Are Related

Your dog can’t do anything wrong – she just doesn’t yet know how to do it right!

Want to hear how Patti can help?

Request your complimentary 10-minute phone consultation.

  • Reward-based Training

    Reward based, force free training principles applied for reduced stress learning environment.

  • Learn Canine Body Language

    My expertise in reading body language will help you in reading what your dog is saying in their environment. Anxiety goes down when communication goes up.

  • You Learn Too!

    There is a huge difference between management and training. As we are working with your dog, I will point out when you are managing a behavior vs when you are training your way through it.

Request an Assessment

Schedule an appointment for an assessment during which Patti will figure out what's causing the unwanted behavior and propose a plan for modifying it.

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Client Testimonial

  • Working with Patti is very rewarding

    Our dog is a rescue and has issues with anxiety, especially around strangers and other dogs. The front door is a huge trigger, and when new people come over (or even people he knows), he gets very fear-aggressive.

    Patti was completely upfront about fees, and at the first consultation/evaluation, simply recommended that we change Rusty's food and then re-evaluate his behavior. She could have sold us a whole training package, but instead she gave us her nutritional expertise and went her merry way. I was so comfortable with her methods, her demeanor, her intuition, though, that I vowed we would reconnect when I had time to really work with her.


    We started training sessions last December with the goal of having a relatively harmonious visit with the in-laws (5 people staying at our house!) in February. Due to scheduling conflicts on both sides, we had fewer training sessions than I had hoped, and I was really worried that we hadn't made enough progress to achieve what I wanted in February. But Rusty was AMAZING with my husband's family – there was not a single bark in the first 20 minutes, and even when the chaos got to him, he was easier to calm down. He spent the week getting love and attention, and I only had to use the "time out" training method a few times.


      —Morgan B, Freeland WA

Make Time with Your Dog Fun Again!

Have you forgotten how to have fun with your pup? I have the key to communication that will unlock your potential...and you'll have a lot of fun doing it!