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What’s a positive dog trainer? Are you a positive dog trainer?

In the sense you probably mean it – “Will I be nice to my dog using your methods? Would Child Protective Services be okay if I used this on my kids?” the answer is yes.  Positive dog training is the way to go! We are members of the Pet Professionals Guild, which is the international Association for Force Free Pet Professionals™ and also members of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers.

Now for the hair-splitting. The term “positive” has at least two meanings in dog training.  One is positive, as in dog-friendly.  In that sense, Ahimsa Dog Training is all about positive dog training.  We train with clicker training and do not use force, shouting, or other “negative” forms of coercion to train dogs.

The other use of “positive” in dog training is as a technical Learning Theory term.  In that sense, there is “positive reinforcement” and “positive punishment,” among other things.  In those terms, “positive” just means you’re giving the dog something, in the mathematical sense of addition.  You’re giving treats or giving pain/annoyance.  So in that usage, “positive dog trainer” doesn’t make sense.  But that’s a little geekier than most people care to be.