“Balanced Training”  Versus  “Purely Positive Training”

What’s in a Name?

Recently I was watching a Leerburgh video shared by Tyler Muto on Facebook.  The video was about the concern for certain ordinances cropping up in the U.S. which are designed to ban many of the tools available to dog trainers today.

The particular ordinance being discussed was written in a way that would require professional dog trainers to be licensed.  If a dog trainer was using tools or methods deemed to be adverse by the “Purely Positive Training” organizers (who are in support of the ordinance), the dog trainer could have his or her license revoked.

SNEAKY … but smart (if that’s the side you’re on).

Presently, there are only two sides to this debate.  The two sides also have official names. Two sides which have evolved into opponents, who have forgotten about the importance of camaraderie.  Just like the Republicans & Democrats, these two sides have lost their synergism.

The Names:

Party 1: “Purely Positive Training”

Sounds great, doesn’t it!  I mean who could be against that?

Any person would naturally think that sounds GREAT.  Sign me up!  After all, how can Purely Positive Training be wrong?

Party 2: “Balanced Training”

The word “Balanced” is also a positive concept /nice word … after all, balanced is a good thing!  We all want to be balanced!  Once again, sign me up!

Names alone can pit one party against the other by focusing on differences.   

“Purely Positive Training” suggests that anything else is unacceptable.  Pretty one-sided. “Balanced Training” suggests that the alternative thinking is UNBALANCED.  Also one-sided!

What’s in a name?

A name is something we can either identify ourselves with / or not.

  • Could there be a third name that we could all identify with?
  • Could there be just one name that gives each of us the freedom to be the unique individuals our innate natures dictate us to be?
  • Could there be a third option that gives us all the license to use our own intuition, the freedom to listen to our higher selves as we select the right tools and approaches for a particular dog and dog owner at that moment in time? Aren’t they each as unique as we are?  Aren’t their needs unique also?
  • Could there be another name that is inclusive rather than exclusive?
  • Could there be a party that is united in camaraderie?
  • Could there be one name that shows loving kindness to all beings?

How about …

“The Integrated Approach”

To All Dog Trainers Everywhere:

If you believe in the undeniable freedom we each acquired at birth, the freedom to be unique individuals … please choose these words.

If you recognize the combativeness in our industry, and know there’s a better way … please choose these words.

If you still have faith in your fellow man, especially other dog trainers who all:

  • Love dogs
  • Love the work we do
  • Love helping others and have a desire to make a positive difference

Please choose these words in your daily work.

To have peace on earth, we first have to behave in a peaceful manner with each other.

“The Integrated Approach”

to dog training …

Make them your words!