About me

MADELEINE PONTET, DipCABT – CANINE BEHAVIOURIST AND TRAINER

Sussex dog training

A qualified Animal Behaviourist and Trainer and a member of the CAPBT, my journey began thirty years ago with my first dog, a German Shepherd bitch called Ninock.  She was so easy in every way, receptive to training, clever and happy.  She instilled confidence in everyone she met even those who were usually wary of the breed.  I then went on to have five more GSD’s, gaining knowledge from various classes and then managing the training myself, earning a reputation for having an affinity with dogs.  Since then, although I had other breeds along the way, five years ago I brought home a ten week old Rhodesian Ridgeback.  What a complicated dog he turned out to be.  Toko was sensitive, unsure of the world and in need of a different kind of handling. I wanted to know how his brain worked and why he showed such different behaviours. 

  He made me want to find out more which is how I found myself studying with COAPE (Centre of Applied Pet Ethology) and I haven’t looked back since.  Toko, who could well have been much more of a problem in the wrong hands, became a more balanced and happier dog because of it. 


settleALWAYS LOOKING FOR ANOTHER WAY

A passionate lover of all animals, I holidayed on farms as a child and would dream of working with animals when I was old enough.  I have ridden and worked with horses since I was twelve years old, recently becoming interested in ‘Parelli’ (natural horsemanship) again a holistic approach to training horses.  I always try to look for ‘another way’ in training and behaviour work.  This helps me gather the tools needed to deal with the problems I see on a day to day basis.

come‘DOMINANCE’?

Words like ‘dominance’ and the ‘pack’ mentality do not exist in my world of dogs.  Nor do I allow ‘check’ (choke) or slip collars to be used during my training sessions.  I always use kind, reward based methods, encouraging positive reinforcement whilst instilling an attitude of happy confidence, with an aim to producing a well balanced and social dog.