Lancashire Life - - PEOPLE -

Shaun Hes­mond­halgh is no stranger to brav­ery. He was an RAF po­lice dog han­dler for many years, is a trained teacher and spe­cialises as an expert wit­ness in cases in­volv­ing dan­ger­ous dogs. In 2012, he es­tab­lished The Way of the Dog, a behaviour and train­ing con­sul­tancy.

‘I’m al­ways up to date with my jabs – bites are a haz­ard but I’m never afraid of a dog. Peo­ple come to me for many rea­sons; vet rec­om­men­da­tions or a preda­tory dog that gives chase.

‘I teach peo­ple how to han­dle their own dog,’ ex­plains Shaun who has worked with RAF dogs which have reached the rank of sergeant and been re­warded with smart coats dis­play­ing their stripes.

‘Some peo­ple try a re­ward sys­tem but it is bet­ter to ad­dress behaviour. One cou­ple were ter­rorised by their German Shep­herd, who didn’t like them going out.

‘They would throw sausages on the floor to dis­tract him and then dash to the door. But dogs aren’t silly and he soon re­alised what was going on, so he would stop them reach­ing the door and then, when they’d given up, turn his at­ten­tion to the sausages,’ laughs Shaun who solved the prob­lem by in­still­ing dis­ci­pline through play.

Holis­tic ther­a­pist Emma King (left) with Ni­cola Loveridge and baby Fred­die en­joy­ing a mas­sage treat­ment

Dog behaviour train­ing with Shaun Hes­mond­halgh and German Shep­herd Tor­ben

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