IAABC News for February 2017

Written by the IAABC Editing Team

Welcome to the first IAABC Journal of 2017. After consulting with our readers and IAABC staff, our Web developer Mychelle Blake has created a new site, making it easier than ever to find the content you’re looking for. Meanwhile, managing editor Tiro Miller has been busy finding new and unique content from all over the world, and we’re now able to publish the journal on a quarterly schedule.

IAABC Conference 8-9 April

Join us in Los Angeles for a multi-species, multi-track conference on all aspects of animal behavior consulting. With a diverse range of speakers and a focus on practical, case study-based presentations across a variety of companion animal species, our conference will give you the chance to gain new perspectives on your behavior consulting, training, shelter, or veterinary practice. IAABC 2017 has been approved for CEUs from CCPDT, KPA, PPG, NADOI, and IMDT, and qualifies for 14.5 RACE credits, so come and soak up some knowledge along with the California sunshine.

Need more information? Here are seven reasons you should spend the weekend with us.

Tickets are available at https://iaabcconference.org/registration/.

Ines McNeilNew marketing chair

We’re delighted to announce that Ines McNeil, CPDT-KA, has joined the IAABC Journal as our new Marketing Chair. Ines is a certified dog trainer and online marketing strategist. She lives in Buffalo, NY and owns All Positive Dog Training LLC and The Crossover Trainer blog. In 2014, she founded The Modern Dog Trainer website where she blogs, hosts a podcast, and creates online courses and other resources to help dog trainers with their businesses. We’re excited to have her positive energy and marketing expertise on the team!

Ines is your first point of contact if you want to take out advertising in the IAABC Journal, and can be reached at ines.mcneil@iaabc.org.

Licensing for dog trainers

In December, a criminal abuse case in Long Island, NY prompted New York State senator Todd Kaminsky to propose a bill requiring that professional dog trainers be subject to licensure. On behalf of IAABC’s Board of Directors, our President Michael Shikashio sent the following letter in support of regulating dog training as a profession:

To the office of Senator Kaminsky,

The International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants supports efforts towards ensuring dog training be reliably humane, ethical and effective, based on scientific evidence and best practices. We believe that the current absence of regulation in dog training does not afford sufficient protection to dog owners, dogs, or the public. The lack of any requirement for education or oversight for professional dog trainers has lead to the kind of abusive practices we saw in the recent case in New York. To that end, in principle, we support Senator Kaminsky’s Bill to require licences for professional dog trainers.

We look forward to working with Senator Kaminsky’s office to ensure sufficient consultation with all stakeholders, including professional animal behavior organizations, dog trainers and the public, takes place. The IAABC Board of Directors and staff therefore offer our time and resources as part of this consultation process.


Michael Shikashio, CDBC

President – IAABC


In our opinion, regulation will bring benefits to the public and ultimately to the whole profession of dog training. We also recognize that there are hard questions to answer and potential pitfalls ahead. We believe, however, that the best way to shape a good outcome is to engage with the process, which is what we will be doing as we move forward into 2017.

Courses and mentorships

Our mentorship program has helped dozens of people get personalized help from expert behavior consultants. These eight week programs are designed for small groups to have direct access to a mentor, so they can work together on the student’s personal and professional development. We have two mentorships coming up this quarter: Beginning Behavior Consulting with Sarah Filipiak on March 6th, and another session of Michael Shikashio’s popular Aggression in Dogs starting on April 17th. Registration is now open with discounts for IAABC members—click here for prices and details.

Animal Behavior Consulting: Principles & Practice—our flagship 12-week course covering all our core competencies—starts again on March 12th. Word has been spreading about the unrivalled quality and unique structure of the course; we got more than double the number of entries into our Rebecca Park scholarship essay competition this time around! Aubrey Williams rose to the top of the pile with her entry, “Good Intentions are not Always Enough,” which you can read here.

For details on our latest courses and mentorships, plus a digest of recent scientific papers and sneak peeks at upcoming journal material, sign up to our monthly newsletter.

Join us!

Our Twitter account made Companion Animal Psychology’s list of who to follow in 2017, and our Facebook page is full of the latest studies, news about everything IAABC does, and interesting stories from around the Internet. Follow us and join the conversation!


Of course, none of this could be possible without our members. If you want to enhance our mission to bring humane, effective, evidence-based approach to animal behavior consulting, help us grow our education, community, and our advocacy, you can join IAABC as a Supporting member for $65 a year (plus one-off application fee). You’ll get access to our peer-to-peer support networks, discounts on our courses and conference, two monthly newsletters, and special resources just for members. Visit https://iaabc.org/join.