Do No Harm Dog Training and Behavior Manual

Dog Training Manual Do No Harm Force Free Positive trainer san diego del marThe “Do No Harm” Dog Training and Behavior Manual by Linda Michaels, M.A. Psychology, for Pet Parents and Dog Trainers.

“Do No Harm”/Force-free methods are finally becoming the gold standard in dog training. 

The Do No Harm™ Dog Training and Behavior Manual was initially designed as my own personal guide for teaching basic manners classes, and it has evolved into a reference manual for my private behavior consultations. It was created to be a practical guide for either training format. It is also an e-book for pet parents who want to get an inside look at dog training and behavior, and for those who seek force-free techniques and solutions for specific problems.

“Do No Harm” Dog Training is exactly what it says it is!  Stating objectives clearly, without reservation, is my new mantra. That is: “Do No Harm” physically OR psychologically. Psychological harm can be devastating, as many of us know, and it can last a lifetime.

Professional organizations that care for and treat sentient beings all have ethical codes, directing members to “Do No Harm”. The dog training “industry” and moreover, the dogs, deserve an ethical code as well. These organizations all outline acceptable “standards of care” for their members. They include: The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the American Medical Association (AMA), the American Psychological Association (APA) and the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA).

This ebook is a PDF so it can be viewed on a computer, printed, or viewed on a smartphone.

It’s written for everybody and anybody who loves a dog. More specifically it was written for trainers of all stripes, and pet parents too.  However, it can be used by anyone who works with or lives with a dog, including: Progressive veterinarians, shelter/rescue staff, volunteers and foster parents, groomers, animal welfare organizations, and other pet-related professionals.

The manual was created to be a practical guide for either teaching classes, teaching private consultations, or both training formats. It was written for those who seek force-free techniques and solutions for specific problems. It is also an e-book for pet parents who want to get an inside look at dog training and behavior.


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FACE Foundation reviews the manual on their blog 

Reviews from Readers

“Such wonderfully put together information. You gave me a fresh outlook to revamp my lesson and behavior plans for Housetraining and Aggression. I will be using the vet portion of the manual with a fearful dog at the vet this week. I want to get the Hierarchy of Dog Needs into the veterinary clinic in a presentation and at some local clinics and shelters. The Hierarchy shows how important it is for the pet parent and their animals to feel comfortable and happy. I also want to try to apply this to a dog I’m trying to work with at the shelter. I love this training tool! Thanks Linda!”  

~Tanya P., dog training business owner and shelter volunteer


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About Linda

Linda Michaels, creator of the Hierarchy of Dog Needs®, was recently rated one of the top ten dog trainers in the United States, by Top Ten Magazine. Linda holds a master’s degree in Experimental Psychology (With Honors) and conducted laboratory research in behavioral neurobiology, earning the University Scholar Award from the Psychology Department of San Diego State University. Linda’s unique combination of scientific training and hands-on experience with dogs and wolfdogs creates a bridge between the worlds of research, dog trainers and pet parents as demonstrated in her presentation at the 2015 Pet Professional Guild (PPG) inaugural summit: Understanding Research: Making the case for force-free training. Linda worked with some of the most difficult behavior cases at the progressive San Diego Humane Society and SPCA for five years while teaching classes there. She was the head trainer and behavior consultant at a private pet store before becoming a private behavior consultant. She was the first professional Behavior Advisor for the in Julian, CA. Training aggressive dogs and wolfdogs convinced Linda that using harsh methods and collar devices is counter-productive to treating aggressive and potentially dangerous animals and because these devises and harsh methods are often a cause, not a cure of aggression. Linda became an outspoken animal welfare advocate opposing dominance-based dog training methods and aversive collar devices that are too often ineffective, unsafe, and inhumane.
Read more about Linda.

Excerpts from the Do No Harm Manual

Excerpts can be found on the blog, including
Finding the Right Dog to Fit Your Family
Enrich Your Dog’s Life to Thrive

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Before You Get a Dog and Begin Training

How to Find a Dog That Fits Your Lifestyle

How to Find a Good Dog Trainer

Training Supplies

Chapter 2 Do No Harm™ Standards and Practices

Laying the Groundwork for Do No Harm™ Force-free Training

Hierarchy of Dog Needs™ Guide and How to Use It

Grazing Games



Vaccinations and Socialization

Dog Park and Dog Beach

Dog Body Language

Separation Anxiety Prevention

Resource Guarding Prevention

Clicker Training Foundations

Chapter 3 Good Manners and Impulse Control

Greeting You and Visitors

At the Veterinarian and Groomer

Chew This, Not That

Puppy No Bite! Mouthing

No Jump

Settle Down

Chapter 4 Basic Training

Name Response: Come Basics

“Come” Long Distance




Leash-Walking Equipment

Leash-Walking Skills

Treat Dependence Prevention: Five Techniques

Chapter 5 When Things Go Wrong

Barking, Barking, Barking

Fear and Socialization

Separation Anxiety Therapy

Recognizing the Need for Help

Dog/Dog and Human Aggression Basics

Dog-Dog Aggression Therapy

Realistic Expectations

Desensitization and Counter-conditioning Techniques

Human Aggression Therapy

References, Resources and Supplies

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