Who We Are

The Humane Society of Boulder Valley’s 5,000 square-foot Training & Behavior and Canine Education Centers provide a comfortable, indoor experience for you and your pet.  We offer group classes, one-on-one consultations, and public workshops and conferences.  We are equally excited to work with both dogs and cats, and strive for excellence in both animal and client services.

Our Philosophy

The Humane Society of Boulder Valley promotes force-free animal training and discourages the use of pain, fear, or coercion to modify or manage animal behavior. Our goal is to provide pet guardians with training strategies that provide engaging, safe and effective interaction between pets and people. We rely on positive reinforcement for manners training and utilize force-free behavior modification and management strategies for dogs and cats in need of rehabilitation.

To ensure happy and healthy relationships between pets and people, we rely on positive, reward-based training techniques to encourage appropriate behavior and foster a foundation of trust and enjoyment. At the Humane Society of Boulder Valley, we use a variety of rewards including treats, playtime with favorite toys and other animals, and opportunities for outdoor play to encourage appropriate behavior. We believe this is the most efficient method for teaching polite behavior and ensures a successful relationship between you and your animal companion.  We wholly believe that training should be a fun and rewarding experience for both of you!

Our Technique

In pet dog training, we encourage behaviors we want (sitting when neighbors visit) and fade-out behaviors we are less thrilled about (jumping when neighbors arrive). The dividing line between traditional “old school” training and a progressive, positive-based approach rests on the decision to use either aversive, forceful techniques or non-aversive, engaging techniques to accomplish our training goals.

Truly positive trainers embrace non-aversive training methods and rely heavily on positive reinforcement to encourage and promote desirable behavior – sitting for greeting, chewing on appropriate chew toys, and any number of “obedience” type behaviors. Since the advent of positive training methods, there has been a scientific recommendation and cultural mind-shift away from intimidation and force as a method to achieve compliance. We have changed our focus from “how do I get my dog to stop this behavior?” to “how do I get him to start doing this instead?”. Positive trainers have learned to reframe their expectations of pet dogs (and cats and all other mammals) with the goal of teaching dogs to work cooperatively and enthusiastically with the guardian. Armed with this knowledge, you are now equipped to make training decisions that will determine the future of your relationship with your dog.

Our Team

Our talented team of animal trainers have obtained a variety of certifications and credentials through education based in scientific animal learning theory, with a keen understanding of operant (consequential) and classical (associative) conditioning.  With an enthusiastic and compelling commitment to fun, engaging training sessions for you and your animal, you’ll quickly understand why our team has a great reputation in the Boulder Valley and beyond!

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