by Leighton Oosthuisen


March 2010


Partners Dog Training uses a system carefully developed over years, countless evaluations and thousands of dogs.


About Partners Snake proofing

✔ Partners trains more dogs annually, than all other trainers in the Valley combined. NO other school can duplicate what we do.

✔ While the actual training process is complex, it is based on a simple approach.


How Snake proofing works

✔ We want your dog to recognise the scent and sound of a rattlesnake, and leave the area.

✔ We use live rattlesnakes and do NOT injure our snakes by defanging them.

✔ Special cages ensure snakes cannot actually touch the dogs.

✔ E-collars are used in training, as they provide the best response with the least amount of risk of injury.

✔ E-collars do NOT hurt our dogs. If you like, you can feel for yourself.

✔ The stimulus or "shock" is electronically battery driven, and is NOT an electric shock.

✔ If a dog yelps it is from the sudden fright they get, and NOT from pain.

✔ And you need them to get a fright, as this makes the training more successful.


Is the training dangerous to dogs

✔ In 25 years of training and about 24,000 dogs, I have NEVER seen a dog injured with an electronic collar.

✔ Of course, if used incorrectly, it does have the ability to injure a dog.

✔ I have seen many dogs injured through the inappropriate use of harnesses, training collars, halti's, flat collars, etc.

✔ The correct answer here is "appropriate use"!

✔ Learn how it works, and be responsible in the application thereof.


Owners handling their own dogs

✔ Owners should NOT handle their dogs, as they may "cue" or "correct" the dog during training.

✔ The association should be between your dog and the snake ONLY.

✔ There are other schools/trainers that allow owners to train their own personal dogs.

✔ Every year we test dozens of dogs trained by other trainers who allow owners to handle the dog.

✔ Most FAIL the test, or don't show the correct amount of response.


Use of water to create association

✔ You can NOT use water to teach your dog to avoid snakes.

✔ Using water as an aversion conditioning process would create a fear of water in your dog.

✔ We are aware that some agencies recommend training your dog using a garden hose to create fear based association with a snake.

✔ We believe this to be ineffective, and in some cases, dangerous.


Using Clickers or other signalling devices

✔ You can NOT use a clicker to create a positive association with reacting to a snake.

✔ Clickers are positive based conditioning tools, whereas the use of an e-collar (in this application) is a negative based process.


Using dead snakes or other species of snakes

✔ We have found you can NOT use dead snakes, other species of snakes, or snakeskins, to create the association.

✔ We have tested dozens of dogs trained this way, and more than half FAIL, which means in real life they would be DEAD!

✔ We believe the scent (odor) of a dead snake is different to that of a live snake.

✔ The canine nose is able to distinguish between the two, so if your dog is trained to detect and avoid a live snake, it will not work on a dead one.

✔ The same issues applies to using other species of snakes.

✔ We use the Diamondback Rattlesnake, which is the most common venomous snake found in the Southwest United States.

✔ We have found highly trained odor canines, such as Search & Rescue dogs and Narcotic Detection Dogs, are in fact capable of distinguishing between different species of Rattlesnakes.


Why this information

✔ We believe in education. It is key in making informed decisions.

✔ The above information is provided because we care about your dogs safety, and that of your family.


Can we watch you train first?

✔ Yes, you can, as long as it doesn't interfere or distract the training that is going on.

✔ We welcome questions, so please feel free to contact us.