We are primates, dogs are canines. It seems obvious, and yet it is sometimes good to remind ourselves that we do not function or communicate in the same way. These differences are expressed every day, when we get nauseated because of the fascination our companion shows for excrements or when he sneezes and turns his head in disgust from the odour of the perfume that’s meant to make us smell nice, when we try to convince him with long speeches of which he only understands an infinite portion or when he sends us signals that are as unmistakable to him as they are insignificant to us. Each one has to work hard to get to know and understand the other one, it’s the only way to create a harmonious relationship.
Why does my dog react this way? What is he trying to say through his behavior, his body language? How can I help him to better deal with this or that situation? What do I need to stay watchful about so as to avoid this or that problem in the future? How can I change the way my dog behaves in this or that situation?
Most of these questions are linked to training (or re-training) and to the ethological knowledge of that canine that stands in front of us.
What we see as a problem behavior is often a natural behavior from the canine point of view, a survival strategy that is nonetheless unwelcome from the human point of view. In some cases, a dog may however have severe physical/medical problems that manifest themselves in a behavioral disorder. Working alongside veterians is often essential to rule out physical/medical causes of an unwanted behavior (a dog that is hurting is bound to be more irritable than one who is feeling well), sometimes it is also necessary to accompany the behavior adjustment or to treat the behavioral disorder with the help of medicine.
My training allows me to help you when it comes to behavior adjustment training, i.e. modifying the behavior of the handler and/or the dog through training and teaching. I am neither a “pet psychiatrist” nor a veterian, I am a dog trainer who specializes in behavior adjustment training. I will never hesitate to refer you to a competent veterinary specialist when needed as we owe it to both animals and owners to work side by side for their well being.