Monmouth County Underdogs and The Inner Dog hosted “The Power of Positive Training” with Victoria Stilwell. The two-day seminar held at Brookdale Community College in Monmouth County, New Jersey, October 19 and 20 attracted a diverse group of dog lovers and professionals from various areas of New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
Victoria Stilwell is a world-renowned dog trainer best known as the star of the international hit TV series It’s Me or the Dog on Animal Planet. Stilwell discussed various topics, such as what is positive training, the dangers of dominance, understanding your dog – learning canine body language, the dominance myth, and dealing with aggression in a shelter environment.
Most of the attendees shared the experience as invited to Stilwell’s home, discussing dog behavior over a casual lunch. The welcoming feeling established a relaxed mood of enjoyable learning and entertainment.
Michelle Motzenbecker, Secretary, Director of Marketing and Public Relations of the Monmouth County Underdogs stated, "Our goal for this event was to help dogs and I think we accomplished just that. The event helped spread the word of positive dog training in the hope that more people move away from using pain and fear based techniques with their dogs. Our event doubled as a fundraiser to benefit three local rescues which will help them continue to save the lives of homeless dogs. We were able to bring together people of varying backgrounds who work with dogs in different capacities (trainers, dog walkers, pet sitters, doggy day care staff, groomers, shelter/rescue volunteers) to give them a place to network and learn. By providing attendees with new and alternative resources, our hope is that dogs that are adopted into homes remain there because their caretakers are now armed with the tools to succeed. For people who already have dogs in their homes, but are struggling with understanding them, the information learned during Power of Positive Training seminar provides a path to success where they might have otherwise surrendered their dog. We were really pleased with what transpired over the two days of the event and are thrilled by the positive feedback we received from participants."
Kristy O’Donnell, certified professional dog trainer of Hounds In Harmony in Rocky Point, New York stated, “Ms. Stillwell has done a wonderful job presenting to both professionals and pet parents. Her information was very clear, concise, and entertaining.”
Ruth Tye O’Brien, dog owner and foster for Poor Paws Rescue stated, “I really enjoyed the experience. The information is presented in such a straightforward approach, easy to explain and I’ve already been able to apply at home. Besides our own dogs, we also foster for Poor Paws Rescue and have encountered a very diverse group of dogs. My goal was not only become a better dog owner, but a better foster family as well. The information on animal behaviorism and seeing the gestures and movements and habits explained was an incredible eye opener for me. I am definitely glad I came!”
Debbie Elsinger foster mom for Monmouth County SPCA and Wag On Inn Rescue stated, “It was a very entertaining and informative session. I learned a lot about dogs’ senses and why they behave the way they do.”
Sold out at the event was the pride and joy of Stilwell’s new venture working with Through a Dog’s Ear, the iCalmDog. This portable, compact player is pre-loaded with four hours of Through a Dog’s Ear music clinically proven to soothe a dog’s anxiety.
Other fun entertainment of dog learning included a 50/50 and raffles during both days of the seminar. Monmouth County Underdogs and The Inner Dog also hosted an intimate evening with Victoria at Mumford's Culinary Center. Attendees of the seminar were able to mingle with Stilwell as each person enjoyed gourmet hors d’oeuvres and cocktails.
A portion of the proceeds from the seminar will be given to three New Jersey rescues in support of each organization's efforts to save dogs:
Dog trainers who attended both days were entitled to earn seven CCPDT CE credits or 14 IIBC CE credits.
Not a negative word was used to describe his or her experience at the event. Attendees shared the lessons learned, the information provided, and the laughter of mingling with the world-renowned dog trainer, Victoria Stilwell. If ever a similar event is held again in New Jersey, I highly recommend attending The Power of Positive Training with Victoria Stilwell ... Positively!