Dan got his first dog Jill in 1992 from a local animal shelter. He walked in with the expectation of taking home a German Shepherd Dog...there were two available. Jill, who was fourteen months at the time, had been surrendered by an elderly couple who were unable to handle her. Already confident and responsive, she was exactly what Dan was looking for.
When some behavior issues began to crop up, he sought out the assistance of a local dog-training business for help ironing them out . He ended up putting a choke-chain on Jill...and wound up getting bit because of it. Not wanting to drive a wedge between himself and his dog, he sought out a better alternative methodology, and learned about reward-based training. Jill responded so well to this particular methodology, that together they went on to explore other endeavors which included: off-leash reliability personal protection, fly ball, herding, child safe dog programs, and public demos. He has used this methodology with all of his dogs, his horses and the barn cats, with amazing results. Jill ended up becoming his teacher as well as Spring Canine Academy's Canine Ambassador, and remained Dan's constant companion until her passing in 2005.
With words and their meanings, a channel of communication is opened between human and dog. We are essentially teaching your dog English as a second language. We need to teach our dogs a way in which we can communicate effectively, and building a working vocabulary will accomplish this in the most efficient manner.
The type of training we use is called reward-based training. We do not shove the dog into position, and do not use choke, pinch, or shock collars. We teach you dog in a way that causes your dog to want to do what we ask. As with anything we do, the more we want to do something, the better we do in that endeavor.
The only correction we do use is if your dog does nor do what we want, the dog does not get what he/she wants. This is certainly something to be avoided, but not something that will intimidate your dog. This will actually cause your dog to want to work harder for you. In a way, what we do is to teach your dog how to get what he/she wants – by doing what we want. In this way both dog and human are on the same page and working together.
Other correction type training methods simply punish your dog for undesired behaviors. They do not teach your dog what you want him/her to do, but rather what and who to avoid.
It is much easier to teach your dog what you want him/her to do instead of trying to correct everything that is not what you want you dog to do.