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understanding dogs

Understanding Dogs Coaching People Changing Lives

Maybe you adopted a rescue dog who faced trauma in their past.
Maybe you’ve never raised a puppy before and things are quickly going off the rails.
Maybe your dog had a negative experience that left unwelcome behaviors lingering.

No matter what brought you to this point, you and your dog are likely feeling apprehensive about what your future together holds.

I know from personal experience how painful and frustrating this can be. Having spent almost twenty years learning, applying, experimenting, and experiencing what it takes to grow a healthy human-canine relationship, I’m excited to share what I’ve learned.

Show me a dog with issues of any kind and I will show you a human-canine relationship that is troubled on some level.

I know firsthand how healthy bonds with our dogs can enhance our lives and what it takes to nurture that bond – and it isn’t always what we think.

The Way of Life® Method is a unique method of understanding dogs, coaching and training people and their dogs, and changing lives. It offers a unique lens to understand why dogs do what they do and what leads them to the behavioral issues seen so often these days.

We do not buy into the argument that dogs with behavioral problems are inherently flawed.
We do not make excuses for our dogs’ behavior, blaming it on breed and genetics or background and rescue/shelter status.
We do not believe that dogs are by character anxious, reactive, possessive, fearful, or aggressive or any of the labels thrown around these days.

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At Way of Life® Dog Training, we coach people in relating to dogs differently and live with them in an entirely new way…​

…One that relieves current problems and prevents new issues from arising.

Here’s what we won’t do…

We won’t be looking for the right control tool to use on your dog.
We won’t be devising complex desensitization and conditioning protocols.
We won’t be doing obedience training in the traditional sense.
Rather, we’ll begin by considering the problem behaviors presented by your dog, looking for clues in the way of life, and making design changes which over time will change the dog from the inside out.

Taking full responsibility for our dogs’ behavior is not easy but it is the only way out.

When we are willing to take responsibility for the state of our relationships with our dogs, including our role in their problem behaviors, we begin seeing them and living with them differently.

We grow in strength and wisdom, become better people, and the dogs can’t help but follow suit. They reward us in ways we never imagined, far exceeding our effort, and bestow on us their unique intelligence and real personality. Because we have done the work to understand them as dogs, they now understand us as humans.

How do I know this?

Because I’ve been where you are right now. In fact, I came to my wit’s end with a dog that seemed impossible to train. (You can read about my adventures with Maya here). When I hit my personal rock bottom as a dog owner, I discovered that it was the way of life that needed changing, and that way of life included me, my attitude and my understanding of what a dog is. Ultimately, I completely reframed my perspective on how to live with dogs and my relationship with Maya and dogs in general transformed.

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Now I want to share my hard-won knowledge and experience with you​...

Through Way of Life Dog Training, I will ease the conflict in your current relationship and help you build a foundation that can support a lifetime of fun, freedom, and accomplishment with your dog.

It all begins with cultivating a healthy bond, as only in the safety of that bond can we clearly see the dog’s true nature. But what does it take to build a bond with a dog? It takes designing a way of life that our dogs understand and can get behind. It means understanding the rearing and relationship stages of that way of life: Foundations, Exposure, Integration.

The Way of Life Method is based on four pillars that change across these three stages.

As we get started working together, we will audit these aspects of your way of life…
Relationship & Mindset
We deconstruct your mindset towards your dog and dogs in general and analyze the effect that this mindset has had on your relationship.
We explore your understanding and application of socialization, and coach you on the Way of Life® unique and gradual approach to socialization.
Managing Space & Boundaries
We examine your approach to managing space and boundaries, including the amount of freedom and choice given your dog, inside and outside the home.
Developing Drives
We work with you on harnessing and strengthening your dog’s natural motivations and innate drives, through exercise, training, and sport activities.

The Way of Life Method offers more than a well-trained dog. It goes deeper than simply fixing problems and aims to raise dogs that are sound, strong, and spirited.

How do we know we have a good relationship with our dogs?

They are confident, calm, and collected. They mind us regardless of where we are. They deal with new experiences confidently, knowing they have us to lean on. They don’t put themselves in danger because we would have made their lives worth living. They are genuinely happy and can’t wipe the smile off their face.

You could have this. With the power of the Way of Life Method, let us show you how.

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Let's get started.
Resonate with my style of training? I’d love to chat with you about the behavior issues you’re experiencing and the goals you have for your canine!
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