K9 Kind Dog Training & Behaviour Consulting Code of Ethics
Our Code of Ethics serves as guiding principles that shape our work as a business. We are committed to honouring these values and to putting them into action in our services and professional conduct.
Team members and staff of K9 Kind adhere to the highest professional standards befitting a complex, helping profession. These include:
1. Aversive-Free Training Philosophy
Action: While K9 Kind recognizes that it is still legal in most jurisdictions to use P+ (Positive Punishment), and R- (Negative Reinforcement), tools and techniques on dogs, there is ample evidence in both the pure and applied literature that training and behaviour modification can be accomplished without the use of aversive stimuli and their attendant side effects and impact on dog welfare. Team members and staff practice and endorse training and behaviour modification that does not employ pain, fear, startle, electric shock, intimidation, fear tactics, strangulation or other forms of P+ or R-. Team members and staff adhere to the BCSPCA Animal Kind Standards of Training and the BCSPCA Position Statement on Animal Training.
2. Evidence-Based Practice and Intellectual Integrity
Action: Competence at dog training, behaviour modification and effective skill-building in owners relies on a thorough knowledge of the principles of operant and classical conditioning, as well as their efficient application in pet dog settings. Furthermore, the dog owning public is best protected as consumers of dog training and behaviour modification services if questions of motivation and side-effects are transparent. Competence and transparency are therefore critical to our work. Obfuscation of means of motivation that is based either on poor knowledge of animal learning or deliberate attempts to hide or re-brand techniques and tools is unacceptable practice.
Misrepresenting to clients, other professionals or the public how training and behaviour modification work is dishonest and unethical.
3. Professional Demeanour, Collegial Atmosphere, Etiquette
Action: Team members and staff uphold a professional relationship with both our canine and human client. We require our team to behave with respect, honesty, diplomacy and professionalism towards not only our clients, but our colleagues and the canine community.
4. Provide a comprehensive, science-based services on aversive-free pet dog training, behaviour and behaviour modification so that dogs:
a. are not relinquished to shelters and rescues due to behaviour problems,
b. are integrated into families and not relegated to yards, garages or kennels,
c. are socialized, have high quality of life, enriched environments, and a sense of safety
d. are understood by their human families and allowed to engage in species-normal behaviour, empowered to access reinforcers (e.g. attention, play, food, toys, smells etc.) in ways that are acceptable in a human environment.
5. Competency and responsibility in dog training. K9 Kind believes that dog trainers should be competent and who’s knowledge is based on current, sound scientific principles. We are committed to current behavioural science and its application to dog training and behaviour consulting.
Action: Promote universal understanding of, and respect for dog trianing nad behaviour consulting as a profession by endorsing strict adherence to scientific and humane methods.
Action: Require staff to obtain professional dog training certification through an educational organization recognized by the BCSPCA Animal Kind program.
Action: Resources are sourced from accredited professionals in animal behaviour and adhere to our code of ethics.
Action: Strive to make decisions based on comprehensive research, aggregated data, and expert opinion.
6. Promote only responsible breeders who adhere to behavioural and medical standards, who are committed to providing and high level of care for their dogs and who support their dogs’ physical and psychological well-being.
7. Support animal rescue organizations.
Action: K9 Kind promotes supports animal rescue organizations by means of education, endorsement, promotion, donations, volunteering and cooperation.