About Way of Life™ Dog Training
A Radical and Intuitive Approach to Human-Dog Relationships
My name is Souha, the founder of Way of Life™ Dog Training, author of the Way of Life™ Method, and your canine rearing and relationship coach.
Almost twenty years ago, I adopted a dog that presented many issues. For five years, I tried everything possible to change her behavior, using various types of reinforcement, including reward-based and corrective, intense physical exercise to tire her out, having her earn everything, and challenging her in every sport possible.
I came to find out that trying to change Maya’s behavior without understanding its root cause was a fool’s errand. I learned to look to way of life in all its aspects and these discoveries changed the trajectory of my relationship with this dog and my life as a human being.
I take deep pride in knowing that I bring my clients and students a particular blend of education, expertise, and experience to my coaching and training practice. I am a behavioral scientist by training, holding a PhD in management and organizational behavior, fields that have informed my work with dogs from a different angle than the mainstream dog training industry.
Management and organizational behavior are the study of human behavior in organizations, focusing on human motivation and performance. In organizational behavior, we study leaders and followers, group dynamics, motivation and learning, and attachment and relationships, to name a few. We explore the impact of organizations and situations on individuals. Just as with people, situations can bring out the best or the worst in our dogs. Instead of working with behavior as most of my colleagues in the business do, I work with the ways of life and relationships behind canine behavior. I work with the root cause of behavior. I work with organizational behavior.
Dog Training Expert
I’ve been working with dogs as long as I’ve been an academic and have diverse experiences as a:
- Dog owner of several dogs, including my GSD Maya who blessed me with the motivation to learn and eventually start this organization.
- Shelter and rescue volunteer dog-walker, foster parent, and trainer in the wake of the pit-bull ban in Ontario.
- Dog sport enthusiast and competitor, familiar with a range of sports including agility, barn hunt, herding, scenting, tracking, protection, and obedience.
- Mentored for a decade by an award-winning breeder and master dog trainer known for aggression expertise.
- Certified Family Dog Mediator (FDM) by the Family Dog Mediation Center.
- Graduate of countless seminars and courses with Sam Malatesta, Suzanne Clothier Relationship-Centered Training, Fenzi Dog Sport Academy, and Leerburg, among others.
- Founder and coach of Way of Life™ Dog Training since 2019, dealing with every breed, background, and behavioral issue.
Making a Deep and Lasting Difference in Dog Behavior
Despite much talk on relationship and bond with our dogs, our methods are still predominantly and archaically focused on modifying surface behavior through various means of reinforcement.
The Way of Life™ Method of raising and training dogs is different in that it focuses on the way of life and relationships underlying behavior. I have yet to work with a dog who does not respond well when we work with relationship and zero in on the way of life.
The desire to change the entire conversation on how dogs are seen and raised drove the writing of my first book, The Way of Life™ Method: How to Heal Your Relationship with Your Dog and Raise a Sound, Strong, and Spirited Companion (At Any Age).
Today, as founder and operator of Way of Life™ Dog Training, I coach clients in-person and remotely, working with dog owners across Canada and the U.S. addressing the range of behavioral issues, including but not limited to anxiety, fears and phobias, separation anxiety, reactivity, resource guarding, and aggression, among others.
Regardless what brought you to us, I look forward to working with you!