Many of todays trainers are eschewing the idea that our modern dogs are pack animals. In spite of their best efforts, the idea that our dogs are pack oriented continues in the mainstream consciousness. Why? Possibly, it is because dogs often display many of the same traits that their wild relatives do. It’s easy to see the similarities between wild and domestic canines. I would suggest that the idea of pack oriented behavior is often misunderstood and stereotyped. Ruthless aggression, and young dogs rising to the top position through dominant violence, are all outdated ideas of pack behavior that have been disproven by modern science.
Thor and Vinka are easy to walk after Kabler training.
Perhaps, it would be better for todays trainers to say that the modern understanding of pack behavior has changed, rather than throwing out the pack paradigm altogether. I believe that dogs respond positively to being a part of a strong family unit. In the wild, wolf packs are primarily made up of family members. The mother and father are the Alpha female and male. Their children are their followers whose primary job is to learn how to successfully hunt as a pack. Juvenile’s often play wildly, lacking the focus needed to successfully lead, and it is the pack leaders responsibility to clearly guide them.
A pack is a strong family that spends time together: The Kabler living room.
The canine family pack is misconstrued as being a cold and violent place where the Alpha pair lead with impunity. The reality is far from this popular misconception. The pack is actually a warm and safe place. The wild canines have extremely close relationships with the Alpha pair and the other pack members who are often their siblings. The strong family provides security, safety, and assures the canines ability to hunt large game. If a wolf in the wild loses their pack, they also lose the security that comes with it and suffer from intense survival stress– the wild dog instinctively knows that their future is no longer certain and their anxiety levels increase. Wild dogs thrive within a family pack, but suffer extreme stress when isolated and alone. Through my training experience, I have witnessed countless pet dogs exhibit this same anxiety when they feel they are isolated or part of a weakly structured family unit. Pack survival anxiety can cause behavioral issues and problems for our modern dogs.
GSD Huck is so excited to be re-united with his family after his Kabler Residency.
It is vital that we provide our modern pet dogs with the security of a strong family unit. This will create a sense of belonging in the dogs mind that simulates the natural need for a dog to have a pack. The strong family unit provides a blanket of security that decreases anxious behaviors and fosters clear communication. Strong families have routines, group activities, and expectations of each member providing all involved with purpose and love. The Kabler training method is designed to teach human guardians how to create a strong sense of a structured family for their canine companions.
Call David to find out more about his unique training approach at
828-337-5792 & to schedule your dogs free consultation.
Gus and his guardian practice a loose leash walk at the park.
Rescued Dogo Alistair successfully worked through intense dog aggression in Kabler training.
When I first met Alistair and the Guthrie’s they were struggling to contain a dog that was highly aggressive towards other dogs and cats. He was a rescue and suffered an abusive puppyhood. After our consultation I knew that I could help this incredible and handsome boy that was loved so much. Over the course of my on leash program I was able to successfully teach him and his guardians using the Kabler approach to training. The complete transformation in Alistair’s behavior was an amazing experience for me. I just love receiving referral letters like this. Happy training! – David
I cannot recommend David Kabler enough.
When we adopted our 5-year-old, male Dogo Argentino, Alistair, he could not be anywhere near other dogs. Any dog within 50 yards would send our otherwise sweet, 100 lb. boy into a lunging, snarling fit.
We did our best on our own for two or three months until he burst through our front door and attacked a dog walking with its owner 30 yards away.
Practicing a sit request with Dogo Alistair during a private session.
When we called David he assured us that he had experience with large, powerful, hard-headed breeds, and that he was confident he could help us. The best part was that David set very realistic expectations and never promised us anything. In the end the results were far beyond anything we could have ever expected.
Over the course of roughly 10 sessions, spanning three to four months, the transformation in Alistair was incredible. David helped us build a strong foundation of obedience and boundaries while giving us the knowledge and skills we needed to continue Alistair’s training. Instead of every walk being a game of “dodge the dogs” for fear of a chaotic meltdown, Alistair can hang out at the Wedge and play with his many new dog friends.
Regardless of the issues any dog is having, I would confidently recommend and trust David to help anyone through it.
J. Guthrie & Family
Toby, Blaze and their Guardian Fred learning to work together.
When I went out for an in home consultation I met Fred and his two handsome dogs Toby and Blaze. Both dogs were incredibly high energy. Fred was suffering from back trouble and could not walk his boys without them pulling and lunging uncontrollably. The dogs leapt all over me, scratching me with their strong paws and it was clear that Fred needed more control over them than he had. We started with basic training and advanced until Fred was able to walk both of them politely down his street. Both dogs learned to listen to Fred for direction, walk slowly with him on loose leashes, and to sit or down stay upon request. Now, after going through my Basic training course, Fred has a stronger relationship with his two dogs, and has a higher level of control at home and when taking them places. Toby and Blaze, both working breeds, have their need for a job satisfied— It is incredibly rewarding for me when I see a new bond of trust, respect and communication grow between dogs and their humans. Following is a letter from Fred describing his experience training at Kabler School For Dogs. Happy training! -David
I was referred to David Kabler at Kabler School For Dogs by Aaron Bales (Owner/Manager) of Happy Tails Country Club in Fairview. I was looking for training sources for my 2 dogs, Toby, a 9 month old Labrador mix adopted from Brother Wolf, and Blaze, a 5 year old Shepherd mix from Asheville Humane. Blaze had been to obedience classes for 18 sessions during the 5 years before meeting David.
I called David and he came out to our house to meet Blaze and Toby. I had called David primarily to work with Toby (the puppy). We made arrangements for David to work with Toby for 5 sessions at our house beginning the following week. As it turned out David told me to include Blaze as well, which I thought was great for them to get some training together. We began the following week with basic beginnings.
Toby and Blaze are handsome boys– practicing Down and Stay upon request.
What I have truly learned the most, is how to change my actions with dogs and how to positively guide them in situations, versus scolding them for unwanted behavior. I have seen vast improvement in both dogs and I have learned how to actively work with each dog on their strong points and their weaknesses.
Kabler Dog Training is not just dog training, but people training as well. I had to learn how to teach and communicate with both dogs even though Blaze was further along than Toby. After about the 3rd class we would go out to wait for David’s arrival and both dogs were very excited to see David even though he was a very firm instructor. They enjoyed their time with Kabler School For Dogs, as did I. I highly recommend his classes.
Thank you David.
Gerry and Fred S.
“Toby & Blaze”