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In the dog training world, sometimes we use some technical terms that the average person may not fully understand. There is often confusion from pet owners regarding the difference between obedience training and the process of behaviour modification. Understanding the difference between these two disciplines gives you better insight into what it is that your dog may require.

To start with, obedience! Obedience training is essentially the process of teaching you dog to do things. We teach our dogs that different commands/cues represent opportunities for reward through the correlating behaviour or task. The most common obedience tasks relevant to a pet dog would be "sit", "drop", "come", "heel" and "place". This is not an exhaustive list however, and there are many more advanced obedience skills that can be taught to dogs.

It is a good idea for every owner to engage in some form of obedience with their dog, as reliable obedience that is applicable to your lifestyle can improve the quality of both your and your dog's life!

The process of behaviour modification, is generally applied to situations of problem behaviour. A behaviour already exists, one that is not functional, and a qualified trainer will help you to find solutions which stop or reduce it's occurrence.  Often a specific process of desensitisation and counter conditioning are the only way to solve these problem behaviours, a process which takes a thorough knowledge and understanding of canine behaviour. This process is always an individual one, as no two dogs are the same.

Common problem behaviours that are reported in pet dogs include reactivity/aggression, nuisance barking, separation anxiety, inappropriate digging and obsessive behaviour. Often these behaviours are just as stress inducing in the dog as they are for the owner and interventions must be made to improve the situation. It is always recommended that you work with experienced trainers when attempting to solve these kinds of issues, as too often, the wrong solution can contribute to the issue rather than resolve it.

Best Life Dog Training & Behaviour can provide both obedience training and behaviour modification services. Our training specialists are experienced in the area of behaviour modification as well as functional obedience.


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