As a leader in No Kill, the Austin Pets Alive! (APA!) mission is to eliminate the unnecessary killing of pets. We are proud that Austin is committed to creating a path for every savable animal. As a result, Austin Animal Services and APA! serve many underserved populations, including a population of large breed, behaviorally-challenged dogs.
APA! treats all dogs as individuals, and their behavior and temperament determine the training tools or methods required for their rehabilitation. Depending upon the severity of a dog’s behavior, there is a wide range of methods utilized and customized for each of them by APA!’s Dog Behavior Program staff, such as obedience training, playgroups and other regimented training that addresses their unique challenges.
APA! is committed to employing every humane method possible to ensure every dog has a chance at life. Remote collars are utilized for dogs that demonstrate better responsiveness to the unique and novel vibration and stimulation sensation provided by these tools and are implemented by highly trained personnel, who have felt the stimulation themselves. APA! uses remote collars only when other techniques are not successful, and this type of training is used only by someone who is qualified to implement it safely and effectively. Every dog’s safety and quality of life is the utmost concern. Therefore, APA! uses a variety of tools and techniques that support dogs in their individual learning process. None of the training methods or tools used at APA! result in pain, avoidance, fear or a deteriorated relationship with the animal’s handler.
Despite the fact that APA! saves, cares for and rehabilitates the most behaviorally-challenged dogs in Austin, the remote collar has only been used as part of a training program for 0.38% of APA!’s 4,700 dogs in the past year. While APA!’s Dog Behavior Program has been uniquely designed to serve our animals, the principles align with recommendations of the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior, the Canine Good Citizen program of the American Kennel Club and the Least Intrusive, Minimally Adversive (LIMA) approach, supported by organizations such as the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.
For more information about APA!’s Dog Behavior Program, click here.