About this course
About this class
The two most common reasons that dogs are returned to shelters are aggression toward people and aggression toward other animals. Aggression toward other animals is the main reason for dogs being euthanized. Studies have suggested the longer the duration of the behavior problem, the worse the outcome.
Some stats on reactivity include:
- 40% of dogs have growled at their owners
- 20% of dogs have growled or snapped at their owners
- 15% of dogs have snapped at or bitten a household member
Goals of the Class
Primarily, we want to create an environment in which everyone feels safe while learning. At no point is the goal to put you or your dog “over threshold” and into situation where they will be rehearsing unwanted behaviours.
You will also:
- Learn critical handling skills so you are well equipped to deal with challenges that may arise in your community.
- Provide your dog with life skills he needs to exist comfortably and thoughtfully in environments that previously provoked anxiety, heightened arousal level, and reactivity.
Interaction with other dogs and handlers is not the goal of this class.
As a participant in our reactivity class, you will learn how to expose your dog to various triggers in a slow, reliable pace. This is so she can replace reactive behaviour with more acceptable responses.
You will also learn how to accurately assess your dog’s threshold for triggers, as well as the distance at which your dog can be exposed to a trigger without provoking a reactive response. With this knowledge, you will be able to use cues and reinforcement to build your dog’s confidence.
Overall, by learning these cues, you will not only predict opportunities for reinforcement but safety as well. Reactive dogs need to feel safe with a guardian, not feel overcome by a pack leader.