We are so thrilled to announce Carrie Doiron has accepted the position of Academy Director of Training at Paws Pet Pad!!
She will be leading the development and overseeing the evolution of the Alberta Canine Learning Academy, Alberta’s premier canine learning academy at Paws Pet Pad and helping bring about real change to the dog training industry in Alberta.
Carrie has grown with Paws Pet Pad and helped it become the educational and enrichment-based positive and force-free facility it is today. Under her watch and guidance, new daycare programs are rolling out, boarding enrichment is being taken to a new level, and quality and diversity of programming and opportunities is just blowing up!
We sat down with Carrie for a little Q&A to help you get to know this incredible person who's risen in the training ranks locally and is getting attention from throughout the region.
Why did you get into dog training?
I got into dog training because, for one, my extreme love for dogs. Then I got a very beautiful "pitbull", whom became very reactive after a year of having her.
Everything I tried made it worse. I was determined to live a peaceful wonderful life with her. So an opportunity arose where I can educate myself in how to train her using positive reinforcement. I was hooked from there on in.
The whole psychology behind positive reinforcement and how effective it was, and knowing first hand in how well it helped my own dog intrigued me. All I wanted to do from there on in was to help other families and educate others. It has become my passion and my obsession.
What is your philosophy or approach to dog training?
My philosophy or approach to training I guess would be to create the best possible relationship with your dog. Your dog must trust you 150%. Your dog will always love you.. that's the magic about them, but not all dogs trust. If that is something I can change in a dog/owner relationship, the sky is the limit for them. A dog that loves and trusts you will do anything for you.
Which trainers have had the biggest influence on you?
The biggest influences that I have in regards to dog training, and the style I gear towards would be the world-renowned Ian Dunbar. I have studied plenty of his workshops, which I feel are exactly how I want to approach dog training. The man is brilliant.
My other influence would be Jenn! (the owner of Paws Pet Pad). We have the same vision and passion and talk for hours bouncing ideas and new ways to educate and help.
What is the most rewarding thing about being a dog trainer?
The most rewarding thing about being a dog trainer would be seeing the behavior in the dog change for the better, and have the owners understand and implement the tools you have given them.
What is the most challenging thing?
The most challenging thing about being a dog trainer is, honestly...the quick fix people expect it to be.
What is one piece of advice you'd give to new dog owners?
The advice I would give new owners is "forget everything your parents taught you about dog training and come to a class". I'd actually say that to all dog owners, not just new ones!
Why is training a dog so important?
Training is so important so both the dog and owner have clear communication in what is expected. Training is such a huge bonding experience that gains not only a well mannered dog, but a trusting relationship that will make having your dog incredibly enjoyable and stress free.
The basics I think everyone should learn is the premise behind positive reinforcement training and why we do it. The most important thing to first train is to not use punishment in anything, and how punishment causes future unwanted behaviors. The Premack Principle is simple " you do what i want, and I will give you what you want". lt works every time without causing fear or mistrust.
If you could open people's eyes to one thing about working with their dog, what would that be?
If I could open anyone's eyes about working with their dogs is that their dog is not human, so therefore does not think like a human. That the punishing of dogs to teach them a lesson not only does NOT teach them a lesson, but instills fear of the unknown and creates worse behaviors.
Do you have a favorite breed or personality you like working with?
If I had a favorite breed to work with...hmmm... it would be a German Shepherd as far as obedience goes. Behaviors would be bully breeds as they are just so incredibly smart and so misunderstood. Having said that, I love training any breed. Any mix. Any dog. I'm not choosy; I would love to train them all.
HAVE A QUESTION FOR CARRIE?
Email her at email@example.com