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Network 10's new dog training TV show raises concerns

Pet professionals are calling Aussies to #GetDogTrainingRightwith rewards-based behaviour training and help prevent pet surrenders amid concerns about Network 10’s new dog training TV series misleading dog owners.

With dog ownership at an all-time high, leading dog training organisation Pet Professional Guild Australia (PPGA) is encouraging dog owners to ‘Get Dog Training Right’ with rewards-based behaviour training and help prevent pet surrenders to already overcrowded animal shelters.

PPGA’s call to #GetDogTrainingRight comes in the lead up to Network 10’s upcoming Australian-based version of Dogs Behaving (Very) Badly TV series featuring controversial UK dog trainer Graeme Hall.

Mr Hall is also known as ‘The Dogfather’, but his teaching methods are criticised by many pet professionals across the globe as ‘old-fashioned’ – “using physical force, intimidation and fear to gain the wanted behaviour in troubled pets,” explained PPGA President Sarah Campbell.

“We are concerned viewers will be misinformed by Mr Hall’s archaic, quick-fix and aversive dog training methods,” she said. “Managing dog behaviour can be a challenge but achievable with positive solutions.”

Instead, the PPGA encourages dog owners to use force-free techniques, that focus on positive reinforcement and are based on canine science.

“Put simply, force-free training is rewarding the behaviours you want in your dog rather than punishing the ones you do not want. It is the most ethical and effective method of dog training that puts the animal’s welfare at the forefront,” said Ms Campbell.

Since last year, the PPGA has sent letters of concern to Network 10 about using Mr Hall in the Aussie version of the TV series currently airing in the UK and on Channel 7Plus, co-signed by several leading force-free dog training bodies, animal welfare experts, professional associations and animal welfare organisations, such as Australian Veterinary AssociationDelta Therapy Dogs, Companion Animal Network Australia and PetRescue.

The PPGA’s concerns with Network 10’s Dogs Behaving (Very) Badly Australia TV series and #GetDogTrainingRight campaign is supported by the following organisations and pet experts:

✔️ Association of Pet Dog Trainers Australia Inc | APDT
✔️ Delta Therapy Dogs Australia
✔️ Institute of Modern Dog Trainers Australia
✔️ Trish Ennis, CEO of Companion Animal Network Australia
✔️ Cathy Beer, Founder of Companion Animal Rescue Awards
✔️ Vickie Davy, Co-founder of PetRescue
✔️ David Graham (Farmer Dave), Founder of RuffTRACK
✔️ Annette Hughes, Founder of Where Pets Are Found
✔️ Dr Anne Quain, Veterinarian (BA(Hons) BScVet(Hons) BVSc(Hons) MVetStud GradCertEdStud(HigherEd) MANZCVS (Animal Welfare) Dip ECAWBM (AWSEL) PhD
✔️ Dr Isabelle Resch BVSc(Hons), MVS, MANZCVS (Veterinary Behaviour, Small Animal Medicine), President of the Australian Veterinary Behaviour Medicine Group, a special interest group of the Australian Veterinary Association.
✔️ Lisa Robinson, Director of Assistance Animals International (AAI)

“We are also concerned the program title Dogs Behaving Very Badly implies the dog is naughty and places the blame of the problem behaviour on the dog,” said Ms Campbell. 

“This misconception is worrying because dogs are often either displaying normal dog behaviour or they suffer from a disorder that makes them anxious or aggressive.”

Quick-fix advice misleading for viewers training their dog

The TV series' misleading ‘quick fix’ advice also creates unrealistic expectations among dog owner viewers, explained Ms Campbell.

“This ‘quick fix’ type advice often uses inhumane, outdated aversive techniques that display a limited understanding of dog behaviour, and – science tells us – does not address the underlying problem and will fail in the long term,” she said.
“In reality, complex pet behaviours are not resolved easily and quickly, and may require working closely with veterinary professionals.”
Aversive methods can also have long term negative effects on dogs and in many cases lead to a frustrated and distressed owner, who then surrenders their animal to a shelter.

“We encourage dog owners to get dog training right with rewards-based teaching and help prevent pets from ending up in pounds and animal shelters,” she said.

Follow PPGA commentary on each episode of Dogs Behaving (Very) Badly Australia, which is set to premiere July 21.
Follow PPGA’s Facebook page for commentary by force-free trainers on humane and lasting solutions to dog behaviour problems featured in Network 10’s episodes of Dogs Behaving (Very) Badly Australia.

For advice on how you can #GetDogTrainingRight for a variety of problem dog behaviours, visit


Read PPGA’s Position Statement on Reality Dog Training Shows here:

For evidence and science-based review of the impact of common dog training methods, read

About PPGA

The Pet Professional Guild Australia (PPGA) is a membership organisation representing pet industry professionals who are committed to science-based, force-free training and pet care. We are an official branch of the Pet Professional Guild, a worldwide organisation committed to advocating, educating and encouraging improvements in companion animal welfare through the use of fear free techniques.

Currently we have over 350 professional members, many of these professional trainers in the animal industry, mostly with companion animals such as dogs, cats, horses, birds and pocket pets. Our PPGA members include some of most well renowned veterinary behaviourists and trainers, many of which have worked with rescues and councils in the past and have a wealth of knowledge in behavioural modification.

The PPGA members and affiliates focus on a pet’s physical, mental, environmental and nutritional well-being, a holistic approach to the care and training of family pets. 

MEDIA RELEASE, 3rd July 2023

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