Testimonials

Here’s What People Are Saying About BAT

“Facilitating BAT lessons and empowering both ends of the leash to progress together in greater harmony has been a game changer in my effectiveness with clients.” – Caryl-Rose, CBATI

“BAT has been an amazing tool in so many ways. My dog used to pull excessively on our walks. Now walking is a fun, relaxing experience for both of us. It has also made a huge difference with the dogs I work with at the Sedona Humane Society. My heart sings every time a stressed out shelter dog starts to relax, feel safe and actually enjoy their walk. Not to mention how it improves their chances of adoption.” – Kim C., Auditor

“Starting my BAT journey, is the best decision ever; a whole new world has opened for me and my clients. Join the BAT journey. I’ll promise you, you won’t regret it.” – Brith S., Auditor

“I found the oBATs week-long course to be extremely valuable. I came into the program having some BAT 1.0 and BAT 2.0 experience under my belt, and hoping to deepen my knowledge and better learn how to teach BAT to others. The BAT instructors were really wonderful: warm, supportive, and truly wanting all of us to succeed. In some certification processes you feel like they are trying to weed people out and find ways to have people fail; at oBATs, the faculty wanted to give us every opportunity to learn and grow. At the same time, they were able to give us detailed feedback about how to improve. The instructors really “walk the talk” of being positive and supportive. I received really helpful input about my leash handling skills and how to troubleshoot some common concerns that sometimes come up doing BAT with shelter dogs, the primary population I work with. I left the oBATs course feeling like I had improved my conceptual understanding, my hands-on skills, and my confidence in my abilities. I felt like oBATs really gave me the boost I needed to try to make BAT a more visible part of my home community. I also felt like I met a lot of wonderful dog people who I enjoy keeping in touch with.
Becoming a CBATI has meant more to me than simply getting a certificate or more letters after my name. Becoming a CBATI has changed the way I think about working with dogs every day. Reflecting on topics like “Is this the least intrusive way I can help the dog learn this?” or “What would be the best way to better empower this learner? Is there a way I can give them more freedom or more choices?” are part of my daily analysis of my practice working with dogs and clients. This process has made me a better trainer and a better person, both in the work I do directly with dogs, and in the work I do with my clients. ” – Jen G., Full Participant

“BAT has been an amazing tool in so many ways. My heart sings every time a stressed out shelter dog starts to relax, feel safe and actually enjoy their walk. Not to mention how it improves their chances of adoption.” – Kim C., Auditor

“BAT has subtleties as well as large concepts. Becoming skilled and informed enough in all its dimensions to qualify as a CBATI made sense to me in 2012 and continues to make sense to me today. I keep my skills and understanding fresh and updated through Grisha’s on-line courses and highly recommend them to others.” – Caryl-Rose, CBATI

“I think one of the most important parts of learning BAT properly is being able to use BAT efficiently and accurately while keep everyone safe. BAT is not a simple solution to just let the dog go free with a long line. It needs to be done under a carefully arranged environment with proper understanding about behavioral changes, in connection with constant observation and leash handling skills. Furthermore understanding the emotional state of pet owners and keeping them motivated is another important skill set. You will learn these skills through a certification course which will be very helpful when working in real life situations. From my own experience of raising a dog who was rescued from a puppy mill and had a lot of behavioral issues, becoming a CBATI changed both our lives.”- Tomoko Nakagawa, CBATI

“I value applying BAT methods to help my clients understand how to support their dog’s learning using rewards, praise and the freedom to choose. It can be challenging to move away from a societal focus on punishment and begin to practice a different way of teaching. The beauty of these skills manifests when a client’s dog responds, becoming the proof that helps their person begin the journey.” – Wendy Dahl MA, CBATI, SAMT

“I have been learning and using BAT for the last 4 months with my very dog-reactive dog, Turbo. A BAT walk with Turbo is the first time in the 1+ year he has lived with me that I got to see him walking outside completely relaxed, engaging in the environment. Counter conditioning at the sight of another dog did not work for Turbo, as he is not very food motivated and was still never able to completely relax even at distances of 150+ feet. We still have a lot of work to do, but he will now disengage from the dog by walking a different direction (away) without having to bark and lunge. It is also wonderful that Turbo relies less on me to distract/reward him with treats and allow him the control and tools to manage the situation on his own. Of course, I still support him but at least I don’t have to feed him every 7 seconds. I look forward to continuing my work using BAT, to further decrease the distance that Turbo needs to be from other dogs on leash remaining completely relaxed.” – Maureen & Turbo

“We have two feisty Rottweilers who were dog reactive on lead and generally pulled like tanks when we walked them. In one session we saw improvement and in only about 3 sessions, we saw a huge improvement in their walks on lead. The BAT work is like nothing I have used before and both dogs really take to it. I highly recommend this type of training.” – Leslie & Bear & Mercy

“I have a young in-tact Labrador Retriever with reactivity. I didn’t recognize his reactivity until two very overt situations just after his second birthday. As I began researching how to deal with the reactivity I found information on Behavior Adjustment Training. I ordered the book BAT 2.0 and it resonated strongly with me. The underlying philosophy just made sense. I was lucky enough to know a CBATI living and working in Sedona. I don’t think I am unobservant generally but I was ignorant of the messages my little friend was giving me, until BAT allowed me to understand he has been giving me signals all his life. But I wasn’t listening. While it is not magic, but good training skills, it felt like it was performing magic. My dog was very happy to first, allow me to redirect him from scary or threatening things, and second, to teach me he could redirect himself when I was observant enough to give him the chance. We have applied BAT theory to many areas of our training and life together. My dog and I began a wonderful journey of experience and learning and we are both so enriched.” – Sue & Sarge

“It’s like going to a really good therapist who gives you the lasting tools you can use for the rest of your life.” – Megan J.

“BAT saved my dog Romeo from a life of fear. BAT saved my dog Lady Luck from only being able to walk during off hours after Romeo her “brother” died (her only dog friend, ever). I saw BAT change and even save the lives of countless “aggressive” dogs (so-called by their guardians, but not true after all). Grisha and BAT forever changed my life, too. From the beginning of BAT till now, I’ve seen it and Grisha travel the US, and internationally, spreading the word of how to empower animals. BAT means love, to me.” – Kim Dogluv

“BAT is a way for me and my dog to cope with difficult situations in, for my dog, a difficult and confusing world. We try to go to places where Tessa can make decisions that give her the feeling of control and relaxation. When it’s not possible because there is not enough space we use coping skills we read in the book to keep control of the situation and try to be as calm as possible (me and my dog). For us it’s a lifesaver in our days together in the big world outside!” – Dorine D.

“BAT means quite a lot to me; it has impacted how I approach behavior modification, how I interact with my clients, how I work with dogs and my outlook on animals as a whole.
I was first introduced to BAT by the owner of the business that I worked for, she is and was a CBATI and generally just a brilliant trainer. When I began learning about BAT and the concepts and science behind it- it just clicked for me. *This* was the approach that resonated with me. BAT is free-flowing, natural, low-stress, and so very effective. It empowers the animal to develop their own coping skills to handle situations that previously caused them distress or discomfort. It’s like going to a really good therapist that gives you the lasting tools that you can use for the rest of your life.
BAT is able to help the animal learn how to help themself in a more natural and less stressful way than even your typical counter-conditioning and desensitization protocols.
I take the concepts from BAT and try to apply them to how I walk my own dogs, how I handle classes, how I work with clients and- of course for behavior modification.
Thank you for the opportunity to apply for this scholarship; I’m so happy that this is even a possibility for those of us that financially cannot afford to pay to attend.
Also, I just want to thank you for your books and DVDs; they have been a total game-changer for me.” – Megan J.

“BAT helped us find friends that helped rather than hindered our reactivity progress! It kept dog encounters at the pace of the dog, rather than at the pace we hope the dog can handle. Structure meant everybody was clear on what was going to happen, which meant success was faster and more comfortable for everyone!” – Sara B.

“Behavior Adjustment Training has changed the way I train, but more so, it’s changed the way I think about the animals and people I work with. ‘You can bring a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink,’ it’s said, and it’s true. How do we reinforce behavior that isn’t happening? BAT has taught me to focus to the water, and not on making the horse drink. It’s helped me to realize that animals (all animals, even people) learn best when they are allowed to experience a situation organically. BAT means stepping back and letting your learner come to their own conclusions rather than trying to whisper the answer in their ear.
In my position as a shelter behavior specialist, I am surrounded by pets in the midst of acute stress. Time and again, I have seen that giving these animals a sense of control is the most compassionate thing I can do for them. In a situation where nearly all choice has been stolen from them, control over their exposure to the things that challenge them is as necessary as food and water. BAT has made me a skilled observer and orchestrator and continually pushes me to empathize. BAT offers us all a chance to experience the power of choice.” – Paul V., Auditor

“Becoming a CBATI was one of the most educational and exciting ‘trips’ I’ve ever had as a dog trainer. It completely changed my basic attitude towards animal training, but also my private life with all my four-legged friends.” – Natascha

“BAT means hope. Hope for me. Hope for Leander. Hope for us.
Our story starts almost three years ago at a rescue adoption event. Like many inexperienced dog owners, I pointed to the cutest dog in the room and said ‘That one.’ I spent our first two years together regretting that decision.
After a year of increasing fear, aggression, and destructiveness, I broke down and hired an e-collar trainer to take Leander and transform him.
After a month away, Leander was transformed as promised. He continued to be fearful of everything and now he was fearful of me as well. I was assured that this was ok because I now had a powerful tool I could use to control him.
Two months later we were exhausted. We could walk our neighborhood but our relationship was nonexistent. It was at this second low point I finally took control of myself and discovered BAT.
I said BAT is about hope. But hope cannot exist without purpose. The purpose of BAT is to shift the basis of the canine-human relationship from control to communication, trust, and understanding.
BAT setups are sneaky. When we define the boundaries of a training setup we are really defining relationship boundaries. A successful setup for us is one that reinforces or expands our boundaries and builds our relationship.
Four months of BAT setups and we are continuously making progress. Can we walk around the neighborhood without help? No. But we have a purpose. We have hope.” – Kevin W. , Auditor

“Becoming a CBATI means to me to totally change my point of view for the needs of dogs, a better understanding for their requirements and thus to become a better coach for animals and human beings.” – Pia

“BAT is all about choice. In a world where traditional training is demanding, request/response based, BAT provides your dog the ability to choose how their actions affect them. Through choice, BAT empowers the dog’s ability to decide how they respond to a stimulus which greatly enhances learning.
When teaching my clients basic BAT skills, I love seeing their own dogs suddenly open back up when given the opportunity to have choice again. No longer are their lives filled with NOs and STOPs, but instead they gain a bit of control back and can make choices that help them feel comfortable in the situation they find themselves in.
For me, BAT training really opened the door for my handling techniques when working with my rescued feral dog. Initially it seemed daunting thinking of the urban world she now lived in filled with new (scary) sights, sounds, and smells that she has never before experienced.
Through our work with BAT, we’ve changed our approach to learning new skills. It’s not overcoming just one thing, it’s learning core coping skills to handle the multitude of situations we find ourselves in. Our new skills deepen the relationship and communication between the two of us. I love watching her work through problems, decide for herself how to handle things and make good choices. I love helping her work through moments of uncertainty due to some stimulus novelty, and then being able to both fall back on our core skills and overcome this obstacle.” – Ellen H.

“Because BAT is the way forward.” – Denmark Course participant

“Overall the course was EXCELLENT. The instructors were EXCELLENT.” – Utah Course Participant

“Course content was great and there is soooo much of it!” – UT Course Participant

“This course with its hands-on experience was valuable and very worthwhile. I left with not just a real understanding of dog body language and the principles of BAT but with practical hands-on experience that I was able to begin using immediately and our dogs are already calmer and happier as a result. I left the class with much more confidence than I had before around my dog, too.” – UT Course Auditor

“While learning about BAT and learning the skills, I also got a little feeling of shame. A shame over all the times, I oblivious forced a dog over its boundaries. When standing as a CBATI, I’m so glad I to be able to tell the tiny signals and this time help the dog, to help it selves.” – Sif S., CBATI Full Participant

“I’m amazed at what even the smallest amount of BAT training has done for my dog. When we first brought our puppy things were very difficult. Teaching our dog to take space and that things were okay to say no to and watching his behaviors reverse was incredible to say the least. Him and his little brother now play amazingly together with no escalation, full positive body language and it makes me cry because I know my boy and I have been through a lot and have come a long way together to be in a healthier environment. It saddens me when people purely just label dogs as aggressive. But it also amazes me how wide spread the term fear reactive has become. When people understand your dogs limits and are willing to help you work with them over time your dog heals too. They feel safer, they don’t feel the need to react or instead of going to 100 they are able to communicate instead giving you the ability to continue to help them.
He has even gotten better with our cat and I can’t thank the trainers in Alberta enough for small pieces of information I’ve learned to help my boy and help people in my life understand him. People are amazed at what they have seen in regards to him changing and I wish everyone could understand these things.” – Katrina

“Becoming a CBATI means for me being able to make people strong with their animals and to grow as a team in a stress- free and respectful atmosphere.” – Pia

“For me, being a CBATI means to pick up the people in training where they are, to give them a completely new view of their dogs and thus to gain more harmony and balance as a team in life.“ – Natascha