Peek Before You Pick:
How to Select a Dog Trainer

Presented by Dr. Melissa Bain, DVM, DACVB, MSDACAW

Wednesday, April 17, 2024 at 8:00 pm ET

Dog looking up at camera


This webinar is FREE for all attendees.
1.5 hours of RACE CE credits (non-medical) will be available for HSVMA members only.
Not yet a member? Join HERE!



Have you ever wondered how to select a dog trainer to whom you are comfortable sending your clients? If so, you are not alone in the minefield of alphabet soup and overpromised results. In this talk, we will review learning theory and the responsibilities that veterinary professionals have when referring their clients for training and behavior modification for their dogs. With real-life examples we will go over how to best identify trainers that utilize humane and scientifically-sound methods, along with how to identify misleading verbiage that some trainers use in order to help you best support your patients.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand basic concepts of operant and classical conditioning, including positive and negative reinforcement, positive and negative punishment, flooding, and desensitization and counterconditioning.
  • Understand what type of dog training or animal behavior professional to whom to refer dogs having varying needs.
  • Be able to develop a strategy to preliminarily identify trainers’ methodology from the internet and social media.
  • Be able to identify common phrases, pictures, and links that are likely to indicate the use of aversive training methods and humane training methods.






Dr. Bain

Dr. Melissa Bain, DVM, DACVB, MSDACAW

Dr. Melissa Bain is a veterinarian and Professor of Clinical Animal Behavior, and is board-certified by both the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists and the American College of Animal Welfare. She received a Master’s degree in Advanced Clinical Research from the UC Davis School of Medicine in 2007. She is a past president of both the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists and the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior, and is currently on the board of the American College of Animal Welfare. In 2016 she was selected as the Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian of the Year, awarded by the American Veterinary Medical Association, and in 2019 she received the Companion Animal Welfare Award from the World Small Animal Veterinary Association.