Maya McLaughlin ISCP.Dip.Canine.Prac, MISAP,AMICAN
Maya Canine Behaviourist                   
 Always choose a trainer who loves what they do

Always Choose a Trainer Who Loves What They Do 

Nutty, Kai and I would 

like to wish everyone a big 


to our website   

This first page has been put 

together as a summary of

  behavioural training  and to

explain how it can help dogs just like yours

Canine Behaviour Training

a short explanation

What is canine behaviour training?

Canine behaviour training aims to help dog guardians identify, manage and retrain specific conduct in a dog which are unhealthy, unsafe or nuisance behaviours.


What is the difference between behaviour training and obedience training?

Obedience work generally covers a range of basic training such as sit-stay-come, recall etc and is usually conducted in a class setting.

Behavioural work will target one or perhaps two behaviours specific to a particular dog and the work will be on a 1:2:1 basis,  carried out in the behaviourist's studio or the dog’s home environment as appropriate.


What does a typical behavioural session consist of?

There can be no typical session because every dog is different but broadly speaking a session lasts  2-hours during which time I like to have a discussion with the dog’s guardian to cover some basics about the dog, his lifestyle, his role in the home and behaviour in general as well as a description of the issue including identifying triggers and when and how often the behaviour takes place.  

Next we look at specifics; that is the behaviour we would like to change to change. This may involve outdoor work if the issue is poor recall or noise reactivity for example; or indoor work if the issue is guarding resources or separation anxiety. Once initial observations of behaviour have been completed, a behavioural programme will then be created and implemented with the guardian so that the dog can be helped. Again, depending upon the issue, the plan may use training tools such as clicker, whistle and other aids as appropriate. Every session will consist of practical hands-on help, advice, recommendations, hints and tips, the dog's own personal assessment report and post-session email support.


What breeds of dogs can be helped by behavioural training?

All types of dogs at any age can be assisted by behavioural work and sometimes the answer lies in being able to manage an issue in the best way possible. However, the sooner a dog receives help the probability of removing the unwanted behaviour and replacing it with  more acceptable conduct greatly increases. In other words, whilst almost all unwanted behaviours can be improved upon; those caught quickly tend to have a higher success rate; that is before the dog has established a pattern of behaviour.


What types of behaviour can be helped?

All sorts of behaviour can be helped with one-to one work including but not limited to:

  • Puppy training (pre puppy class) and associated learning
  • Fear and nervousness
  • Leash work
  • Trigger management
  • Recall
  • Separation anxiety
  • Car training
  • Aggression
  • Barking/Jumping/Chewing
  • Prey drive
  • Rehabilitation
  • Getting along with other animals
  • Elderly issues including managing Canine Cognitive   Dysfunction (doggy dementia)

and more

So when selecting a canine behaviourist for your dog please remember:




  1. Possess the skills, training, education and level of experience required
  2. Create a training environment that is creative, fun, enjoyable and safe for dogs and for people
  3. Exercise respect, patience, consistency and kindness at all times
  4. Offer post-session support
  5. Pursue continuing education in the field
  6. Respect client confidentiality and treat other animal professionals with courtesy and respect
  7. NOT guarantee outcomes which cannot be guaranteed


Behavioural Training Overview

Imagine the hub of the wheel as the root cause of all the behaviours your dog displays and each spoke as an unwanted behaviour linked to the main cause.

Behaviour is defined by observing the dog’s exhibited body signals and actions along with those of the handler. So behavioural training works by eliminating the cause of the behaviour (the hub) as well as dealing with the issues (the spokes) and in this way the core behaviour is first reduced then extinguished.

As each module is addressed, the dog gains confidence and trust in the handler which in turn chips away at the core reason for the behaviour; therefore it is key that we work on each component simultaneously.

It is also imperative that the pace of work is set by the dog. Every dog is different and it is likely that the dog will find some aspects of the programme more challenging than others. This being the case, more time should be spent on what she finds difficult, or perhaps a break may be necessary; depending upon circumstances.

General rule of thumb: if the dog is progressing well then suddenly reverts to type you are moving too fast. Simply return to the level you were when she was working comfortably and start again from there.

Something to remember when buying dog toys

Boys in a wheelbarrow - just for fun!