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I had the sincere pleasure of traveling to Belgium and spending several weeks with Master Trainer, Nino Drowaert of STS K9 and WOW, did I learn a lot! 

Those of you who've kept up with me over the years know that I am always looking for a challenge. Something that will increase my skills as a handler and provide fulfillment to my Malinois in fresh, new ways. 

Nino's innovative approach to training was just what I needed to push me out of my comfort zone and unlock hidden potential in my dogs. I had never seen a handler and dog move with such fluidity, speed, and precision. Whatever Nino was doing, I wanted to do it too!

Nino's methods were unlike anything I had attempted before, and I really struggled in the beginning as I was trying to shed old ways of thinking and adopt a new approach in real-time. If you join his online MVP program, you'll get to watch some of my journey in a series of videos that show my struggle! I naively thought I could simply mimic Nino's movements and it would be a piece of cake! I couldn't have been more wrong... 

I learned very quickly that I was going to need an in depth understanding of how my movement unlocks talent in myself and my dog. But the real gem in this program was that it challenged me to refine my analytics. If I wanted even an ounce of what Nino had, I was going to have to learn how to assess what I was doing, what the dog was doing, and what adjustments could be made ON THE SPOT to find a solution and get the outcome I wanted. 

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With the help of Nino's MVP program, I was able to take an online assessment for myself and my dog to see exactly what our strengths and weaknesses were. This information was transformative in the way I approached every training session since taking it. I learned that I have certain personality traits that often hinder my progress. I have a tendency to "hurry' or "rush" through things and I strive for "perfection" in what I do. This often leaves me feeling frustrated and dissatisfied with my results, no matter how much effort I put in. In short, I discovered that Nino's program has little to do with the dog and A LOT to do with YOU as a handler. 


One thing I can tell you for certain is that I don't have all the answers. A Belgian Malinois is considered a highly trainable breed and I have a lot of fun working with my dogs but I also still have a lot to learn. So what happens when I meet a challenge I don't know how to overcome? Where do I turn when I am just plain stumped, looking for insight or reassurance that I'm doing the right thing? 

Robert Cabral is one of the most highly respected dog trainers in the world. If you haven't heard his name, it's quite possible you've been living under a rock. Robert is an uncontested authority on canine 

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behavior whether it be in basic obedience, pet dog training, aggression, complex behaviors and more. He has trained and titled competitive obedience and protection dogs in AKC, Mondio Ring and IPO / Schutzhund.  Robert has worked with most every breed and temperament of dog. 
Robert has recently launched a website that has become my favorite pastime. It's like a dog lovers play ground; I truly feel like a kid in a candy store as I scroll through lesson after lesson! 
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