29th September 2016

Sylvia and Monty Roberts

Monty Roberts - author, stunt man and international speaker -- is known globally for his crusade to train horses humanely versus the "breaking in" usually experienced. Sylvia Wilson - author and CEO of Bark Busters International, the largest in-home dog training company in the world ? has made it her mission to prevent dogs from being euthanized through proper, all positive training methods.

When the two met up at the 27th annual Bark Busters conference? Inspirational is the only word to describe the passion these two people share for the humane treatment of all animals.

Roberts grew up in Salinas, California watching his father "break" horses the usual way in the 1930s involving pain, control, fear and coercion. Abused himself, Roberts knew there was a better, more effective way to train horses involving communication through behaviour and body language and mutual concern and respect. Hence, the Join~Up partnership was formed, dedicated to the non-violent training of horses. Its success is evident in the accolades of experienced horse people, including Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, who has declared Monty's method incredible. Two-time, World's Greatest Horseman winner, Ron Ralls uses Monty's methods in the foundation for his training work as well. An equal success is his raising of 47 foster children!

Continents away in Australia, Sylvia Wilson (not aware of Monty's horse training methods) worked as an RSCPA Shelter Manager and made it her business to study canine behaviour. Wilson discovered that many dogs are abandoned to shelters because of misbehaviours and stress that can be overcome with the right leadership, understanding and "canine communication". She and her husband Danny developed a unique method of training that is carried out in the dog's home The method is based on the way dogs communicate and uses body language and vocal tones to establish dog owners as "leaders of the mixed dog/human family unit". The Bark Busters system is a positive, non-physical (no choke, pinch, prong or shock collars, no alpha rolling or anything physical) natural approach to dog behaviour modification that "trains the brain" through "communication" which creates a loving relationship based on trust and mutual respect.

"In all my years as a horse trainer, in all my speaking engagements, I have never thought about using my training methods on dogs," said Roberts to the 120 dog trainers in attendance at the Bark Busters conference. "Yet when I think about it, most pets just want to be loved, respected, and are very eager to learn, learning which takes place without ever laying a mean hand on them."

"There is NEVER any cause for violence," said Roberts. "There is too much cruelty in the world without us inflicting more." Both the Wilsons and myself have dedicated our lives to helping our four-footed friends ? mine are just a little bigger!

And the horses and dogs that have been saved as a results of their dedication and revolutionary methods? Millions.

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