Maximizing Animal Agency and Motivation

thu27jun8:00 pmthu9:30 pmMaximizing Animal Agency and MotivationDr Risë VanFleet, PhD, CDBC, CAEBI

Event Details

Air date: 27th June 2024

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Presenter Bio: Dr. Risë VanFleet is a licensed psychologist, registered play therapist-supervisor, certified dog behaviour consultant and certified animal ethology and behaviour instructor in Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania USA. She has 50 years of experience working with children and families, and 20 years of volunteering her behaviour services in rescues, and 28  years of experience consulting with animals and their humans about behaviour issues. She is a coauthor with Tracie Faa-Thompson (Northumberland, UK) of the Maxwell Award-winning book, Animal Assisted Play Therapy (VanFleet & Faa-Thompson, 2017) and together they have developed high quality training for professionals in Animal Assisted Play Therapy®, a field they co-created that emphasises reciprocal relationships, animal agency, consent, and well-being. Her dog behaviour consulting specialties include highly fearful, unsocialized, shut-down, and/or traumatized dogs. She has pioneered the titrated use of dog-dog play, and eventually human-dog play in helping dogs who are extremely fearful. She is also the author of The Human Half of Dog Training: Collaborating with Clients to Get Results, a book for animal professionals on how to work effectively with people, including overcoming common issues that complicate animal consulting.

Presentation Details: Nonhuman animals who have been domesticated over thousands of years have learned to live within human societies, but in most cases, their ability to act freely within their environment has been restricted, sometimes seriously. Many behaviour issues arise when animals’ natural behaviours conflict with human goals or plans, and such conflicts can lead to higher levels of control or even coerciveness and cruelty. This presentation focuses on dogs, although the concepts apply to other species, too. It explores the concept of agency, and how taking the dog’s perspective can enhance their enjoyment of life as well as their relationships with their people. Considering their natural behaviours, as a species and as individuals, opens doors to motivation that sometimes are overlooked even in positive training approaches. The value of Premack Principle is covered as well as a broader “enjoyment of life” ethos in which the dogs’ input and consent are seriously considered. The importance of play for development and social relationships will also be included. Practical examples will be illustrated. 

Price: APBC members £12.50 ABTC members £25 Non-members £35

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27th June 2024 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm(GMT+01:00)



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