leerburg training “ed frawley” right or wrong?

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Question by Oatmeal: leerburg training “ed frawley” right or wrong?
Somebody actually linked me this website and i was wondering if this kind of training works or is positive reinforcement/clicker training more effective?Im kind of skeptical with leerburg training because i dont know if i agree with everything he suggest or am i wrong?(If you actually take time to look at the website) Are his methods too “inhumane” and wont they hurt the relationship with your dog and just cause fear? Im really confused cause ive been trying to research about this but i keep getting mixed views like 1. “He definitely knows what hes talking about”. and 2. His methods are “outdated” and unnecessary”. I mean this whole pack mentality he write about really makes sense but what i dont get is like….

1.Only “YOU” should be able to pet your dog not strangers!
2.Avoid dog parks

etc..i dont know maybe IM the one thats wrong, what do you think?Any opinions or any experiences with these methods?:)

Please help?! Or is there a website or book/videos that you can link me to that you think is better?:) thanks:D
by the way heres the website link


Best answer:

Answer by So Crates
There is a saying that goes something like this “the only thing two dog trainers will agree on is that the third dog trainers methods are all wrong”.

What I suggest is keep reading and learning about different training methods and use whatever works for you and your dog. Dogs have individual personalities, so what works on one dog might not work on another. Positive training is great, provided the dog responds to it. HOWEVER, if this method is not working for you, another method might work, or even a combination of methods. Use the techniques/methods that you are comfortable with. You do not have to agree 100% with his methods. Just use what works for you and your dog and discard the rest.

Here is a site that I found very useful:

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5 comments on “leerburg training “ed frawley” right or wrong?

  1. Better is a relative term. What is right for you and your dog may be all wrong for the next person. It boils down to what method you are comfortable using, what method your dog responds to and what your goal is for you and your dog.

    Leerburg generally aims towards the level of working dog within protection, law enforcement, DEA and other similar high stress, high level working environments. This may not work for everyone. It doesn’t work for me personally, but that’s not to say that I condemn the method at all.

    As Kip said, keep an open mind. Extract/learn what works for you and your dog….because that’s what matters most.

  2. As I train dogs for Schutzhund and Personal Protection I use more his method than clicker type. I MUST have a dog who will obey without asking himself if I smell chicken, a dog trained to bite must break off when commanded, it is not a trick that can be done over. As with any trainer I don’t use all his methods but in my experience doing training, showing, rescuing and with obed classes the positive works with submissive Goldens types not the usual “bad” dogs in rescue and class. Plus the positive usually is slower but all methods work on some dogs and for some problems. Keohlers methods are considered very outdated but he also trained many dogs that had to be rehabbed or die and I still use some of his stuff with great success and no hand shy dogs. The type of training depends on the dogs temperament and what is being trained. A typical Golden is active but submissive and is unlikely to be off leash doing bite work so the clicker can be used as if he doesn’t sit when told no one dies. But many dogs will chase a squirrel across the road in front of the truck over a possible hotdog for a recall. I use food for straight fronts on recalls, Kongs or tennis balls

  3. Kip's Mom *eats sea kittens*

    Here’s the thing about dog training – the one thing that will work for absolutely EVERY dog, I guarantee it… there is no one method that works for every dog.

    The best dog training isn’t clicker, or positive, or pack based, or or or – it’s what works for your dog. Leeburg training works fantastic with hard, dominant dogs. If your dog is soft, or extremely submissive, then this isn’t the training for your dog. But the rest of his advice (like how to handle dogs in the same house as children) is fantastic.

    The first step in training is to know your dog. The second step is to keep an open mind.

    And yes, you should avoid dog parks.

  4. All dog trainers disagree. I have been a business woman since leaving school, but got into canine rehabilitation because I needed to sort my own dogs out.

    As for leerburg…..he adopts the pack mentality theory, but as for putting into practise, I am not convinced. Alot of what he does and says is about training. If you want a happy, balanced dog, you need to give it what it needs and this is what I teach. I am not concerned with training a dog to sit, stay or roll over. My concern is coaching owners in how to fully understand the needs of the dog, how to fulfill those needs, correct bad behavior (not punish) and give their dog stability, consistency and balance. This, done properly will create a balanced dog and any behavioral issues can be overcome. Obedience training just teaches the dog to respond to commands. It is very useful and definately has it’s place, but does not always make for a balanced dog. It is humans that want dogs to do certain things and I am only concerned with what is good for the dog.

    Yes, pack mentality is at the core of your dogs behavior and instincts, but some of the things this guy is saying are really silly to be blunt. Why would you say that dogs are pack animals, but advise not to go to the dog park? They need socialisation with other dogs, not to be kept away.

    Every one that YOU want to allow to pet your dog, should be allowed. You just have ensure they apporaoch the dog in the right way. I’ll check through his site properly for you as there are alot of behaviorists out there that do work properly.

    Above anything else, I would say to carry on as you are. Do your own research like I did and don’t be pushed into adopting someone elses methods if you are not comfortable with them.

    As for clicker training and obedience training, they are great for obedience and handling purposes, but one of the worst case clients I had was a crufts national obedience champion. The best behaved dog I have ever met, but he would rip up the carpets, destroy his owners clothes, attack the postman etc. Obedience doesn’t always mean balance……..and balance is more important for your dog.

    Stay open minded in your reasearch.

    Oooh, just a note. There are groups now that are saying that dpgs are actually not pack animals and that they have been studying packs in a controlled environment for years and not seen any evedence of heirarchy.
    I looked into this and all the dogs used were neutered, never allowed contact with other dogs or humans and so were never given the stimuli that would bring about the need for a strong heirarchy.

    I travelled to America and spent three months following two packs of stray dogs, without ever having actual contact with them and I can tell you that they absolutely had a strong heirarchy.

    Good luck with this and if you want me to send you my client info pack to read through as well, just PM or email me and I’ll get it over to you. I’m not interested in making money from you or anything……my interest is purely in dogs and helping owners learn more about them and ho to fulfil their needs.

    EDIT: I am in the UK and we do not have dog parks over here, so if they not regulated as someone else said, I agree to be wary of them in order to avoid negative experiences for your dog. It is however VERY important that all dogs be allowed to socialise with other dogs.
    Also, remember this, if another dog, off the lead comes running over to yours, protect your dogs. This doesn’t mean get yourself bitten. But you can absolutely stand tall and stand in the way of that dog getting to yours. If you stay calm and stand tall, block the dogs attempts to get to yours, you can diffuse the energy and prevent the situation being a bad one. Don’t have physical contact with dogs like this, they may be aggressive, but it will serve to let this dog know that you are in control and will also reaffirm that in your dog as well.

  5. I don’t really know anything about Leerburg or his training methods and I’m sure he has reason behind his statements if taken in full context as his site has been up for quite some time.

    I have been in dog obedience training for 25 years and I grew up with both schools of thought – negative and positive reinforcement. Each has their place depending on the dog’s temperment and what kind of response you’re expecting from the dog.

    If you have a tough dog and you want to be a K-9 Cop, you need an exceptionally reliable dog who responds immediately like a machine and is not necessarily friend to everyone, you’ll want the negative reinforcement method.

    If you want a reliable family dog who listens when you call and plays nice with the kids, and doesn’t eat the next door neighbor and possibly doesn’t respond immediately and every single time, but is happy to listen to his master’s voice – then you’ll choose the positive reinforcement method. There’s something to the adage ” You get more flies with sugar than with vinegar”. This method is less likely to “break the dog’s spirit” and is much easier on the handler’s psyche because most people are looking for a companion animal.

    I understand the statement you quoted about staying away from dog parks for the following reasons. Dog Parks are not regulated, anyone with their vicious, out of control animal can mosey in and before you know it some young puppy has been terrorized and scarred for life. This poor pup will then never be the same. It is very important that young pups have positive adventures with happy endings.

    Statement 1 I do NOT agree with adamantly and whole-heartedly.
    EVERY young puppy NEEDS to be greeted and handled by as many friendly people as is humanly possible. This teaches the puppy HOW humans are supposed to act and approach so that later when he grows up he will be able to make independent decisions about those he comes in contact with and this will not be until he is well over 2 years old. Well socialized puppies are not “fear” biters, nor do they bite first and ask question later.

    Here’s another tip for you, if you do not feel comfortable about the instruction you are being given you will not correctly perform the exercise because of your discomfort and thus will receive no benefit from the training.

    Here’s some info from a very renown dog person, that perhaps will help you in your decisions:

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