When using the term "Behavioral Issues" we refer to problems that are more urgent and are linked to a dog's negative association with his/her environment, resulting in overwhelming negative emotional responses. This in turn can produce unwanted behaviors such as growling, snapping, lip-lifting, lunging, barking and even nipping and biting.
While dog training teaches our dogs good manners and addresses unwanted behaviors (such as inappropriate chewing, jumping on people and furniture, pulling on leash, etc.), behavior modification works toward changing your dog's emotional response to whatever triggers the reactive response.
Behavior modification is used to work with emotion-based reactions, utilizing modern behavior modification techniques such as counter-conditioning and desensitization. This begins with an in-depth evaluation to discover what is triggering the behavior(s), then working to gradually alter the emotional reaction to those triggers. Strictly working on eliminating emotion-based behaviors (such as growling), without changing the emotional state that is behind that behavior can be dangerous. It removes only the warning signal, not the emotion behind it. For instance, should you teach your dog to not growl at your small child and ignore the emotional reaction behind the growl, you have a ticking time bomb with no visible timer.
Although it goes against the grain as far as normal human response, comforting a fearful dog may, in some cases, be counter-productive.
Fear-caused aggression has been identified as the most dangerous type of aggression. If your dog is inappropriately fearful of people or things and could be described as being a wimp or a scaredy-cat, it's time take action. Even the most timid dog can possibly become defensive and act out if he perceives there is enough danger.
Using scientifically-proven behavior modification techniques, we can help you teach your dog to be more self-confident and to comfortably manage increasingly stressful situations through behavior modification.