Is your dog …
• Constantly barking?
• Always jumping on people?
• Having potty issues?
• Displaying other undesirable behaviors?
Do you need your dog to provide …
• Emotional support?
• PTSD support?
• Diabetes alerts?
• Seizure responses?
• Mobility assistance?
The Canine Coach of Houston can help you!
My name is Dawn Greer, and I am a behavior consultant, pet dog trainer and service dog trainer. I’m a certified AKC Canine Good Citizen instructor/trainer and a certified behavior consultant. I can assist you with all of your dog’s behavioral issues, their diagnoses and treatments.
This is also the home of Texas CHAMP dogs – Canines Helping And Motivating People.
I can assist you in socializing and training emotional support animals, therapy dogs, diabetes alert dogs, seizure response dogs, mobility assistance animals and other specialty dogs. Fully trained PTSD dogs are also available from time to time. Please inquire for more information on service dog training.
Federal law is quite confusing regarding service dogs; I can help you learn what’s permitted in public areas and in businesses. If you’ve had an issue with a business in your area, call the ADA hotline and make your complaint to them directly at 800-514-0301 [voice] or 800-514-0383 [TTY].
“Always PAWSITIVE All the Time” is more than a slogan — it’s a description and a promise. At Canine Coach of Houston, our purely positive programs create a safe environment where you and your dog can learn, and we understand that making mistakes is part of the learning process.
Too often, we expect dogs to be subservient and don’t allow mistakes as part of their process of learning. By giving them choices and encouragement (rewarding the right choices), we teach them to reason, building a much more intelligent dog! Learning environments should be based on trust and encouraging growth.
Examples of punishment that are often used in training are pinch collars, choke chains and e-collars (or electronic training collars). These teach the dog that if they don’t do a particular behavior, then pain is the result – a correction that doesn’t feel good. This is truly the equivalent of teaching a child who doesn’t speak the same language as you by smacking him or her each time they don’t do what you want. Such punishment only results in your dog losing trust in you. He or she learns to do or else be punished, shocked, choked, yelled at or even hit. Hitting a dog is abuse, now a felony in most states. It shouldn’t EVER be tolerated, especially in training!
In my program, you’ll learn about classic and operant conditioning. You will learn, from my 20 years of animal behavior experience, how to comprehend your dog’s body language. You will be able to translate dog language to bridge the communication barriers that exist now. Dogs are truly intelligent creatures who try to communicate with us — we just have to learn their language. You will see immediate results. Our positive approach to training helps you build a better relationship with your dog.
I also specialize in aggression cases. There are more than 15 types of aggression that can be diagnosed. Determining the correct one(s) is important in rehabilitation and counter-conditioning training. The diagnosis can also become fluid, meaning that as the training moves forward, new triggers may be found that will change the overall diagnosis. This will alter the course of treatment. In the end, the goal is to counter-condition your dog to react differently to the same triggers.
While some aggression issues will never be 100% rehabilitated, you absolutely can have a better dog in the end. You can reduce the aggression incidents in your household, between dogs, by a large percentage. For example, one of my clients has reduced episodes from one a week to only three over three months. The degree of the aggression has also been reduced. Dogs that had been attacking others so fiercely that the victims required hospitalization are now barely breaking skin because they can be redirected more easily. This could save the dogs’ lives as well as the veterinary care costs.
One of the most difficult parts of my work is telling people their dog may never be safe with other dogs or with children. Any trainer who tells you otherwise isn’t being responsible. Behavior consultants and clinical veterinary behaviorists know better. Safety for all involved should always be the number one priority. Sometimes it will be in your best interest to make difficult decisions. I’m here to help you do the absolute best that can be done before you have to face those types of decisions.
Training a dog using painful techniques can inadvertently teach them triggers that cause negative behaviors or make them even worse.
Case in point: I am working with a 140+ pound Rottweiler who was trained with an e-collar. The ads for such training are appealing, with a group of dogs appearing to sit peacefully together. Sometimes they like to show you videos of the dogs walking alongside a person, off leash, down a busy city sidewalk. What you cannot see in the ad: Owners and trainers are using buttons to keep delivering electronic shocks to the collars each time the dogs move. The result is often teaching the dogs that being near other dogs is a bad thing. They’ve associated being around other dogs with the constant shocks. Now, you have a 142-pound dog who winces and behaves aggressively towards all other dogs because dogs are now his trigger.
This particular dog is now in a counter-conditioning program, made up entirely of positive rewards and praise. There is no choke chain, pinch collar or e-collar involved. It takes AT LEAST 6 weeks and as long as 6 months to rehab a dog like this. It takes a committed owner and it takes time to bring the animal back from such trauma.
Trustworthy boarding and training facilities can be great. I recommend that you do NOT leave your dog with anyone out of your sight however. If you do decide to board and train, make sure there are live cameras that you can log into and watch online anytime you choose. If you cannot see 100% of the time, you have no way of knowing which methods are actually being used on your dog behind closed doors.
All too often, owners bring dogs to me who have been half-starved and are very skittish when returning home. The dog who was always outgoing and friendly is now ducking from raised hands or when reached for. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to imagine what probably happened behind closed doors. My advice: Just don’t do it. You should be the one training your dog. It is not just about them learning the skills. Training is just as much about the relationship you are building with your dog.
The benefit of working with a PAWSITIVE trainer one-on-one or in small group classes is that you learn how to train your dog all by yourself. By learning how conditioning works, you can tackle teaching new things all on your own. I absolutely love it when I run into a student months later who tells me that they have taught their dog how to play dead, roll over, shake or some other awesome tricks, just by learning the basic principles of classic and operant conditioning.
For information on private lessons within 25 miles of Houston proper or group classes in the Richmond/Sugarland/Houston area, contact The Canine Coach at 779-245-0205.