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Teaching with Head and Heart: Empowering Learners, with Chirag Patel


16-17 March 2018, Worplesdon (near Guildford)

Dog training needs a big re-think! A two-day workshop focusing on positive reinforcement with a difference. Presentations, discussions and hands-on training sessions will focus on the training behaviours for everyday living with the animals under our care. Amongst these are: animal care behaviours, The Bucket Game, loose lead walking, leave, muzzle training, the science of training and building strong relationships.

The theme for the two days will be empowerment: how do we give our canine learners choice and control during training. How do we truly have a behavioural conversation that is two sided, empowering our dogs to tell us when to start, stop or slow down.

This workshop is ideal for trainers, behaviourists, working dog handlers and pet dog owners who do dog sports or are interested in developing further.

Further details and joining instructions under ADDITIONAL INFORMATION below.

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Chirag Patel, BSc (Hons), PGCert (CAB), CPBC, DipCABT, is a behaviour and training consultant who entered the field professionally in 2004 and has since become a leading figure in the profession internationally. He is highly sought after for consulting with private clients and organisations, as well as running workshops for professionals internationally. Chirag consults on the behaviour management and training of domestic animals kept as pets, exotics, zoo and laboratory animals. His passion is the application of behaviour change science and ethics to improve the life of animals living under human care, especially applying training principles to teach animals to be active participants in their own daily and veterinary care in a stress free manner.

Chirag is a consultant for Guides Dogs for the Blind Association and the Kong Company. In 2015, Chirag was invited to join the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA), Animal Training Focus group as the scientific officer and external consultant. He has also been invited and accepted as a Certified Parrot Behaviour Consultant (CPBC), with the International Association of Animal Behaviour Consultants (IAABC).

Previously Chirag has worked for Dogs Trust as Assistant Head of Canine Training & Behaviour, managed the Animal Behaviour Centre at Dr Roger Mugford’s Company of Animals in Chertsey, Surrey and held a post at the University of Lincoln, as a research technician responsible for the training of Rats and Degus in a sponsored odour discrimination and Indiction project. In addition to this Chirag worked in veterinary practices part time for over 6 years.

Chirag earned his BSc (Hons) in Veterinary Sciences from the Royal Veterinary College in London and a Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Animal Behaviour from the University of Lincoln. He also holds an Advanced diploma in practical aspects of companion animal behaviour and training from the Centre of Applied Pet Ethology. He is currently continuing his education by studying further in the field of Applied Behaviour Analysis. In 2005, Chirag completed an internship in dog behaviour and training with a focus on aggressive behaviour under the mentorship of Jean Donaldson at the San Francisco SPCA and developed his understanding and skills in puppy training under the mentorship of Ian Dunbar PhD, BVetMed, MRCVS. He is also a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers UK (00923) and has previously served on their committee.

Chirag has an internationally selling DVD called ‘From Brain to Bite: understanding, managing and modifying aggressive behaviour in dogs‘.

Web: Domesticated Manners | Facebook: Chirag Patel | YouTube: DomesticatedManners


Additional information


This is a two-day seminar, each day starting at 10 a.m. and finishing at 5 p.m.
Doors to the workshop space will open between 9.30 and 9.45am. If you arrive earlier you will have access to the toilets at the far left of the entrance hall, but please don’t come into the room itself before the doors open – or we will want to chat with you instead of getting the space ready in time.


Our workshop room will be the Lecture Hall, first door to the right in the Animal Management Centre at Merrist Wood College, Holly Lane, Worplesdon, Guildford, Surrey, GU3 3PE.
Note: the post code may lead you down the wrong road with some car satnav systems. Use 'Holly Lane' instead.
College map:

What to bring

The two days are made up of theory and practical sessions. For practical sessions we will break into small groups with several handlers and and one dog. The group will have the opportunity to observe the dog learning new behaviours and train with the dog.
A maximum of six dogs can be brought to this event, however all places give an opportunity for hands-on learning. If you would like your dog to be considered please Email For a dog to be considered, s/he would need to be dog and people friendly, happy to be handled by a small group and happy to settle in a crate or car between the practical sessions.
If you have received confirmation that you can bring your dog, please also bring plenty of treats and a favourite toy or two together with your dog’s bed, water bowl and water from home that the dog is familiar with. Bring a crate if your dog won't spend 'downtime' in the car.
You can give your dog a leg stretch along the path between the Animal Management Centre and the Assault Course, just make sure your dog stays on lead and you clean up after them.
Refreshments and a buffet lunch (with vegetarian options) will be provided. If you are on a special diet or require anything specific, please make sure to bring that with you.


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