Some of you may have seen or heard the recent news in Toronto with the ban on certain training tools. Thanks to the hard work of The International Association of Canine Professionals (IACP), and many other groups who were involved at a grassroots level, the ban was repealed by the city council.
Unfortunately, they are back at it again. This time, in Hillsborough County Florida. A new ordinance has been proposed limiting the ability of dog trainers to effectively train dogs. The ordinance requires trainers to carry a license and limits them to the use of purely positive training methods. The use of any other training methods will result in the trainer losing their license.
And while this ordinance was started with good intention to ensure accountability in cases of animal abuse and negligence, it has since been hijacked by extremist animal rights organizations, who have come in with their money and lobbyists in order to manipulate the language and promote their own agenda. Using words like “humane” and “science based” with no actual science to back up their statement, these organizations manipulate public opinion through misinformation, lies, and my new favorite term, “alternative facts”.
The agenda of these extremist groups will hurt countless dogs and dog-owners by restricting dog trainers in such a way that people who are struggling with difficult dogs will no longer have access to effective trainers. They will be left with one of 2 options: either surrender or euthanize their dogs.
Although seeing as some of these "animal rights organizations" kill more pets than anyone else in the Untied States, I’m pretty sure they do not see that as a bad thing for the well-being of the dog. I guess death is better than a great life with a family who loves them and enforces consequences if they growl at the mail man.
Don’t get me wrong; I am not advocating for the use of aversive tools when they are unnecessary or by trainers who do not understand how to properly implement them. We want nothing more than the human treatment of all dogs. Balanced trainers are the most passionate about this; in fact they are often the ones who are willing to put in the work with difficult dogs and save them after purely positive trainers have deemed them not-trainable.
And while you may not live in Hillsborough county Florida it is foolish to think this is not going to effect you. This is how these organizations work; start small at a local level in one county. With each victory, they get bolder and bolder eventually the same laws are at the state and national level.
If you are watching this video and would like to help prevent this from spreading to your home town, we recommend signing the petition.
We would also recommend Joining the IACP. Leerburg instructor and good friend, Tyler Muto, is the president of this outstanding organization, which is leading the fight to support open-minded dog trainers. Whether you are a professional dog trainer or a passionate pet owner, the IACP has membership options for to join get involved and help support a good cause.