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Do I need Dog Training or Dog Behaviour Help?

Lets answer that question by considering first -

What is Dog Training?

Specifically Dog Training is about teaching your dog what a cue means
  • Sit = put your bottom on the ground.
  • Jump = get your body over this jump.
  • Weave = move your body through a series of poles.
  • Heel = walk calmly beside me.

What is Dog Behaviour Training?

Dog Behaviour Training is about dealing with the circumstances where your dog simply doesn't listen to you in certain circumstances. You know this! You know that your dog knows how to "sit", but they won't do it when someone comes to the door or when there's another dog around.
It's therefore about really understanding why your dog isn't doing what you ask, and figuring out how to influence them so that they will. Dog Behaviour Training is about
  • Opportunity to learn
  • Practice
  • Understanding the difficulties in learning
  • Understanding where to start and how to progress with training
Dogs with behaviour problems need both the behaviour problem addressed and need to be re-trained (99% or time anyway). The two parts - behaviour - and - training - are crucially important in resolving dog behaviour problems.

So I'd certainly recommend then that your behaviourist also has plenty of dog training experience, and that they are able to explain the process to you - how you start, and how you progress step by step.

So to answer the question - does my dog just need training? Ask yourself - have you actually taught your dog to do things? Do they do anything that your ask? Do they know how do to something, but just can't manage to do it in difficult circumstance? Do you end up shouting at them? Getting exasperated? If you haven't actually taught your dog how to sit, lie, come, heel, then perhaps that's all they need - to learn your language. But if you have taught them, and they continue to ignore you, then behaviour therapy will help.

Your behaviourist or trainer should be happy to answer any of these questions and steer you in the right direction.