About Active K9 Training Solutions
What ACtive K9 Can Offer
HOW IT ALL GOT STARTED....
In 2003, I was a canine mom of two special needs shepherds. Feisty, my male bit out of fear, was dog aggressive, and very codependent. Kiah, my female, was very bossy and territorial. I referred to Feisty as my street smart dog and Kiah as my book smart dog. She loved to train while he was more of a wild animal. Due to their differences in personalities, I had to learn how to care for each dog individually.
During my journey to simply care for my personal dogs I fell in love with training animals, studying behavior, and understanding the motivations behind behavior. My passion for behavior and learning theory led me to creating a business focused on teaching parents and professional handlers how to provide a healthy balance of mental, physical, and emotional stimulation for their dogs and clients. Whether you are a pet parent or pet professional, it is your responsibility to provide this balance within your canine relationships.
The Road I've Traveled
I'm proud to say I take my education in this industry very seriously. Just like training dogs, I believe education is not a one-time lesson, it is an ongoing process of learning that is constantly evolving. My hands-on experience started in 2002 at a daycare and boarding facility in El Segundo, CA. at the Grateful Dogs Clubhouse. This experience was followed by a grooming job at PetSmart, and private pet sitting, walking, and training.
From 2007 to 2009, I studied dog training, behavior, and learning theory at Raising Canine under Sue Smith. In 2019, I started studying under George Daniolos, owner and operator at K9-Defense in Scottsdale, AZ. K9-Defense specializes in scent detection, apprehension, and personal protection canine training. Studying under George has been a highlight in my canine career.
My accreditations include CPTD-KA from the certification council for professional dog trainers and Pet CPR certification since 2014.
The Active K9 Training Approach
My training approach focuses on developing a positive relationship between dog and handler. The key elements in building (and maintaining) this type of relationship are:
- Mutual respect
- A clear line of communication
- Healthy boundaries
- Positive and negative consequences
But before we can begin to change behavior, we need to know what motivates the dog. This includes the motivation behind unwanted behavior and what motivates your dog to learn new behavior. Above, I mentioned my shepherds, Feisty and Kiah, and some of their behavior issues. Feisty's high defense drive was the motivation behind his fear biting towards human and dog aggression. A high (unhealthy) pack drive motivated his separation anxiety. Kiah's territorial and bossy behaviors stemmed from a high-rank drive. When it came to learning, Feisty was food-, freedom-, and affection-motivated; while Kiah was food-, play-, and praise-motivated.
When you hire me for training, the program begins with getting to know your dog. This process starts with a complete behavior assessment, during which , I will examine your dogs energy, motivators, triggers, obedience, and your handling skills. Having a healthy pack drive is the foundation we build on.
Just to be clear, yes I train dogs, but for the training to stick the handler must be properly educated as well, meaning parent/handler participation is required. Ultimately, I want to give you the tools to better understand why your dog behaves the way they do; how to strengthen behaviors you like and weaken behaviors you don't like. This knowledge is an invaluable tool if you plan on having dogs in your life.
As I stated before, training is not a one-time thing. Dogs are constantly changing and exploring. Their triggers change, their motivators change too. They get bored with reinforcements, forcing you to find new ones. This can be very challenging for parents and professionals. But once you understand how their wonderful little brains work, these changes can be fun challenges to address instead of stressful and frustrating.
Please call, text, or email me if you have any questions or would like to schedule training. I am currently serving North Phoenix and surrounding areas.
Missy Dallas- Owner, Trainer & Behaviorist