Training Philosophy - Northern Tails Dog Training

Training Philosophy

Training Philosophy
~ Random Thoughts

  • There is never a reason or excuse to use force, intimidation or pain to train a dog. This does not mean that dogs must never experience negative consequences for behavior, but the negative consequence does not need to include pain, yelling, physical force or electronics to be effective.
  • Dogs who are trained using positive reinforcement are eager to give more of themselves to the training process than dogs who are trained with the use of force and punishment. It is because they are not afraid to make a mistake for which they will be punished. In fact, most dogs are punished for confusion rather than for disobedience.
  • The world is full of reinforcements and food is only one of many possibilities. I teach my students how to capitalize on the environmental reinforcements in every day life.
  • There is a difference between using food as a training tool and using it as a bribe. I teach handlers how to use food and other rewards in a way that does not create dependence on them.
  • “Dominance Theory” is overused as a way to explain behavior, especially aggressive behavior. Aggression has many causes, most of which have nothing to do with dominance. Canine behavior is much more complex than the outdated linear model of dominance – submission.
  • Dogs are not born knowing the human language. It is up to us to teach it to them!
“When I was training Ruger, my Redbone Coonhound, for Search and Rescue work. I went to one of Lisa’s classes to learn how to teach more than the basics. I was so impressed that I sent my husband to her beginning class with his dog and it completely changed the way he interacts with both our dogs and our horses.  I cannot say enough about Lisa and her ability to communicate, not only to our furry friends, but also with the people who own them…even the hard-headed ones!”
~ Karen Reiner, Clayton, WA