A Better Best Friend
Building confidence through healthy play and social interaction.
Austin has one of the most amazing dog rescue communities in the world. Many of you have saved dogs from situations where they were deprived of the opportunity to learn how to be dogs and do the things that dogs love to do. These dogs often wind up feeling afraid or threatened when in the presence of other dogs or unfamiliar people. When they feel threatened, they act threatened, resulting in people labeling their dogs as ‘aggressive’. This type of label removes the nuance of the behavior – they blind you to what’s actually happening with your dog. So the first step is to stop calling your dog “aggressive”!
If we want dogs to not act threatened by something, then we need to make them not feel threatened by it – we need to help them feel safe in it’s presence.
That’s what the BBF Socialization Program is all about.
We use play and social interaction to help dogs feel safe in the presence of the things they find threatening. When a dog is actively playing, he or she is having fun. Fun cancels threat. At first, fun might only happen for a split second, but for that brief moment, the dog’s fears were overtaken by the fun they were having. And fun is addictive. It might start with that split second, but soon those split seconds are turning into several minutes and becoming more and more frequent, until the overall feelings of threat are greatly reduced and potentially even eliminated completely!
A Behavior Evaluation or Private Lesson is required before signing up for the BBF Socialization Program. During these sessions, we will determine whether your dog is a good fit for the program. Do not assume that your dog is not a good candidate – while Day School is not for every dog, we take great pride in helping owners who believe their dogs can’t be helped or who have had poor results when working with other trainers. If we determine that the BBF Socialization Program is not a good fit, then we will offer alternative training plans that we think will help maximize your dog’s potential.