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Behavior Advancement Training®

Behavior Advancement Training, or BAT, is a program designed by dog trainer Grisha Stewart to help reactive dogs learn to cope with their triggers. The program helps dogs gain confidence and social skills by creating emotionally safe interactions with things that trigger fear or aggression, such as dogs and people.

In this class, you will learn to look for the early warning signs that your dog is uncomfortable, and to react in a way that relieves the dog's stress. You will practice exposing you dog to a trigger in a controlled environment at a distance that your dog is comfortable, and teach them to move away from their trigger instead of reacting to it. You dog not only learns that they can get away from a trigger without showing aggression, but also to trust you to leave with them, rather than forcing them into a stressful situation.

BAT also teaches you skills to react in a situation where you cannot control all of the factors, such as a trigger suddenly appearing around a corner during a walk. By learning an "emergency recall" cue that your dog views as a fun game, you will learn to retreat from a sudden trigger without causing your dog to go over threshold.

As your dog gains confidence in their ability to retreat from triggers, you will find that are able to get closer to their triggers without fear. Many times, dogs who begin class unable to even see other dogs in the class without reacting end the class able to stay calm and confident while walking near their classmates.

"BAT class has made a huge difference for Stella and for my confidence in working with her effectively in the future. Before we took the class Stella would bark and lunge at nearly every person and dog she saw when out on leash, even if they were not close to her. Now she rarely barks at people, and, while other dogs are still a challenge for her, she has made a lot of progress in turning away when she sees them and avoiding a stressful reaction."

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