Neil Sattin Interviews Kevin Behan Apr 16, 2010

For those familiar with NDT, you probably know Neil Sattin – a dog trainer based in Portland, Maine who specializes in the Natural Dog Training techniques. He came to train with Kevin years ago, with his aggressive dog Nola. What started as a few sessions, turned into an apprenticeship, and Neil has since become a […]

I am always amused when folks argue against operant conditioning. "Operant conditioning" isn't a method. It's the way learning works. You're using it whether you intend to or not. Whether you acknowledge it or not. That's like saying, gravity isn't the only way to stay on the ground Mar 11, 2010

Below are definitions from a site dedicated to Operant Conditioning. Reinforcement = anything that strengthens a behavior Punishment = anything that suppresses a behavior Positive = something added to influence a behavior Negative = something taken away to influence a behavior These are comprehensive DESCRIPTIONS that do indeed encompass the phenomenon of learning so […]

CORRECTION: Why Do We Correct a Dog? Jun 10, 2009

What are we trying to accomplish when we correct a dog? Do we want to make the dog submissive to us? Are we trying to show the dog that we’re displeased with his behavior? Do we want the dog to feel guilty or ashamed over what he has done or how he is behaving? I […]

Why Do Good Dogs Do Bad Things?

Question: if dogs are social by nature as Natural Dog Training claims them to be, how could a dog ever do something “anti-social?” Answer: because emotion must move. A brief primer on emotion: Emotion is energy. And as pure energy, before it becomes entangled in the higher processes of the nervous system and either elaborates […]

Books about Natural Dog Training by Kevin Behan

In Your Dog Is Your Mirror, dog trainer Kevin Behan proposes a radical new model for understanding canine behavior: a dog’s behavior and emotion, indeed its very cognition, are driven by our emotion. The dog doesn’t respond to what the owner thinks, says, or does; it responds to what the owner feels. And in this way, dogs can actually put people back in touch with their own emotions. Behan demonstrates that dogs and humans are connected more profoundly than has ever been imagined — by heart — and that this approach to dog cognition can help us understand many of dogs’ most inscrutable behaviors. This groundbreaking, provocative book opens the door to a whole new understanding between species, and perhaps a whole new understanding of ourselves.
  Natural Dog Training is about how dogs see the world and what this means in regards to training. The first part of this book presents a new theory for the social behavior of canines, featuring the drive to hunt, not the pack instincts, as seminal to canine behavior. The second part reinterprets how dogs actually learn. The third section presents exercises and handling techniques to put this theory into practice with a puppy. The final section sets forth a training program with a special emphasis on coming when called.