Features December 2009 Issue

Constructional Aggression Treatment (CAT) Can Improve Behavior

Aggressive behavior in their beloved companions is an incredibly challenging and upsetting problem for most dog owners to deal with. The problem is painfully public -and the public is equally free with accusations and advice for the hapless owner of a reactive dog. Many training “solutions” that people try are inhumane, ineffective, or both. Some owners respond by sequestering their dogs to their [IMGCAP(1)]home “quarters” -sometimes for life. In early 2008, I was excited to learn about a very new behavior modification approach for dealing with aggressive behavior in dogs. I described the technique, known as Constructional Aggression Treatment (CAT), in Whole Dog Journal’s May 2008 issue. “Building Better Behavior” explained the CAT program, and described my first experience (and positive results) using the technique. The subject was Juni, an eight-year-old Pit Bull-mix belonging to my friend and colleague Jolanta Benal.

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