Answers to MOST POPULAR Questions
Q1: WHICH COLLAR SIZE?: I am not sure what size Command Collar® to order for my dog. Can you please help me? If I order the small Command Collar® and my dog grows a lot, does that mean I will have to get a larger size too?
A: Below are the maximum and minimum dimensions for both the small and large Command Collars®. Please compare these dimensions with the current size of your dog’s neck, taking into consideration estimated growth of your dog (if he is still developing), and also taking into account your training goals (refer to the “Training Goals” information below).
SUMMARY OF COLLAR SIZING:
- Small breed dogs – puppies and adults: Small Command Collar®
- Large breed dogs – adults: Large Command Collar®
- Large breed dogs – brand new puppies: Small Command Collar®, until dog grows out of it. Note: If you are diligent in applying Don Sullivan’s training System, then your large breed puppy may be fully trained by the time he has outgrown the small Command Collar®. But, if you would like to go at a slower pace, then you may need to purchase a large Command Collar® from the “Accessories” page (on the ordering website) as well as the Complete System – SMALL.
- Medium breed dogs – puppies and adults: The small Command Collar® should be sufficient for most medium breed dogs. However, if you have an adult dog, please compare the measurement of your dog’s neck with the collar dimensions. If you believe that a small Command Collar® will not be long enough, then order the large Command Collar®.
Small Command Collar®
- Maximum length (with all extra links added) = 18 ½” (469.9 millimeters)
- Minimum length (with maximum number of existing links removed) = 5 ½” (139.7 millimeters)
Suitable for tiny dogs such as the Chihuahua, Yorkshire Terrier and Toy Poodle, to medium size breeds such as the Cocker Spaniel, Jack Russell Terrier, and Beagle. It is also useful for brand new larger breed puppies, for the first weeks of their training. Note: Despite the minimum size of the small Command Collar®, this collar should still fit dogs/puppies with smaller necks; the collar will be a little looser than normal, but it will still be very effective.
Large Command Collar®
- Maximum length (with all extra links added) = 24” (609 millimeters)
- Minimum length (with maximum number of existing links removed) = 7” (177.7 millimeters)
Suitable for large to extra large breeds (older puppies and adult age) such as the Labrador Retriever, German Shepherd, Rottweiler and Great Dane.
TRAINING GOALS & COLLAR SIZING:
Before deciding on the size of collar to purchase, it is important to remember that the training aides are temporary tools only; they are not to be used for the rest of your dog’s life. The aim of Don Sullivan’s training System is to empower you to train your dog to a level of off-leash responsiveness within a short period of time, approximately 4 to 8 weeks. It is at this stage of obedience that you will no longer need to use the equipment on a regular basis.
Many people are able to reach their goals within a much shorter period of time (even within a few weeks) and no longer need to use the collar or lines; or they at least use the Command Collar® and shortest Freedom Training Line as a safety precaution and for occasional “maintenance corrections” for a few more weeks after overcoming the major behavioral issues. Others, however, deliberately decide to apply the information within the DVDs at a slower pace, and so end up using the training equipment for a longer period of time.
If your dog is a brand new large breed puppy and a) you plan to begin training your dog immediately, and b) you believe you will be diligent in applying Don’s training techniques in order to achieve the goal of off-leash responsiveness, then a small Command Collar® should be sufficient for the entirety of the training period. However, if your puppy has already grown somewhat and/or you believe that you will take longer in the application of the program, then you may want to consider purchasing the Complete System – SMALL (which includes the small Command Collar®) for the initial training weeks, plus a separate large Command Collar® for later (refer to the “Accessories” page on the ordering website). Alternatively, if you are unsure, you can just see how it goes and, if you realize at some stage that you need to upgrade to a large collar, you can return to the ordering website and order the large Command Collar® separately from the “Accessories” page. (You can also call the customer service number on the ordering website and order via telephone).
A large Command Collar® will be too big for a brand new (e.g. 8 to 9 weeks old) puppy, even for extra large breed dogs. (This is in terms of the size of the links. It might fit the dog’s neck, when the number of links is adjusted down, but the effectiveness of the collar will be reduced, which is very important). A small Command Collar® is effective for both small breed dogs (puppies and adults), as well as brand new large breed puppies, because the links are smaller in overall size. The number of links can be minimized to make a tiny collar, or maximized (the extra links added) to make quite a long collar.
For medium sized adult dogs, simply measure your dog’s neck and compare with the dimensions listed above. Most people choose to use a small Command Collar®, with some or all of the extra links added, for their medium sized dogs; and this works even more effectively than the large collar because the smaller links cover a greater surface area. (Don Sullivan’s dog, Judah, a “smallish” German Short-Haired Pointer, comfortably fits a small Command Collar® with some extra links; although he is now fully off-leash trained and no longer needs any training equipment). However, if in doubt, order the large Command Collar® and you can always remove some links to suit the size of your dog’s neck.
The Perfect Dog infomercial guarantees that you will begin to witness certain positive changes in your dog’s behavior (no matter the breed, age, size, personality, instincts, intelligence, past training, or past experiences of your dog; and no matter the type or intensity of your dog’s problem behavior) within minutes of applying Don Sullivan’s techniques; and you will, if you apply the information correctly and thoroughly, as instructed. Ultimately, your dog will be happier as he grows in devotion to you as his leader, and especially as he gains your trust and receives more freedom in life as a reward.
Don Sullivan put every ounce of effort into thoroughly covering all problem dog behavior in his training DVDs. The answer to any behavioral problem lies in carefully applying all of the training techniques. Don Sullivan’s training tools are certainly designed to empower you to successfully deal with any situation with your dog, but it is the knowledge and skills that Don shares with you in his training DVDs that will be the biggest key to your success.
Q2: EQUIPMENT & TRAINING TIPS FOR MORE THAN ONE DOG: I have more than one dog. Do I have to order complete kits for all of them, or can I order extra equipment separately? If so, how do I do this? My dogs are very different. Should I train my dogs together, or can I train them separately?
A: If you have more than one dog that needs training, you will need to order:
- One Complete System, which includes the two training DVDs, one Command Collar® (your choice of size, depending on which dog you are ordering it for), and one set of 3 Freedom Training Lines (one size for all dogs).
- One extra Command Collar® (your choice of small or large) for each of your other dogs that need training.
- One set of 3 Freedom Training Lines for each of your other dogs that need training.
The extra equipment – in numbers 2 & 3 – has been combined for your convenience into an “Extra Equipment Set,” which is offered at a discount rate. You will be given the opportunity to order Extra Equipment Sets (your choice of large and small) once you add a Complete System to your cart, or once you place an order for a Complete System with a telephone customer service representative. However, if you forget and need to order extra equipment at a later stage, you can return to the ordering website and order accessories via the “Accessories” page; or you can call the customer service number and order via telephone.
The Command Collar® and Freedom Training Lines are used together throughout the entirety of the training process (all three lines are used for different situations). You cannot apply Don Sullivan’s training techniques with the Command Collar® alone, and it will not work to share one set of lines between your dogs. This is why you will need a full set of training equipment (Command Collar® and 3 Freedom Training Lines) for each of your dogs that need training. One of the keys to success with Don Sullivan’s System is ensuring that each of your dogs wears a Command Collar® and appropriate length of Freedom Training Line at all times (while supervised), until you have reached your goals.
Don Sullivan strongly recommends that you train all of your dogs simultaneously. However, your initial approach should be, as far as the foundational commands are concerned, to work each dog individually for the first week. This will obviously require a little more time compared to someone with just one dog, but as you enter into the second week and find each of your dogs becoming more responsive to you, you can then begin to work the dogs together, which will then save you time. This approach will give you a more solid result with all of your dogs.
If you do not begin the same training process with each of your dogs simultaneously, then the untrained dogs can negatively influence the dogs that you are working with, and this will undermine your training success. Even though your dogs may be very different in terms of personality, age, or problematic behavior, the core of Don’s training program is consistent for all dogs, no matter the breed, age, size, personality, instincts, intelligence, past training or past experiences of your dogs; and no matter the type or intensity of your dogs’ problem behaviors. The only difference will be the level at which you will need to deal with your individual dogs.
If you cannot afford an Extra Equipment Set (Command Collar® and Freedom Training Lines Set) for each of your dogs, and you have both small and large dogs, then make sure that you at least purchase two different sized collars. For example, order the small Complete System, and a large Extra Equipment Set. Or, alternatively, order the large Complete System, and a small Extra Equipment Set. You will be limited in what you will be able to achieve (because a key to success with Don’s System is the presence of a collar and line on each of your dogs at all times, while supervised), but you will be able to make some progress over a longer period of time.
Q3: WILL THE PERFECT DOG SYSTEM WORK WITH MY BREED/MY DOG’S PROBLEM BEHAVIOR?: This question is for those who would like to know if The Perfect Dog System will work for their breed, age, or personality etc. of dog; or if Don Sullivan’s methods will help them solve a certain problematic behavior, despite many failed training attempts.
A: For those interested in knowing if The Perfect Dog System teaches you how to resolve a certain problem behavior, please read Question 4 (Q4) for a complete list (with descriptions) of the topics covered in the DVDs. Don Sullivan has put every effort into ensuring that his DVDs cover all the commands that you and your dog need to know (and more!), as well as all the common problem behaviors.
Don teaches dog owners a variety of techniques to deal with a vast number of real life situations with their dogs. Some techniques are specific to a particular behavior, command, or skill (e.g. establishing boundary lines around your home); whilst others are more general and can be applied in a number of different situations (e.g. the technique used to encourage your dog to drop the ball can also be used to stop your dog from chewing on the Freedom Training Lines). Thus, if your dog has a problem behavior that you cannot see is covered directly in the DVDs, very likely you will learn skills and techniques in one or more of the segments that you will be able to apply to successfully resolve the issue. Please also see the rest of the Frequently Asked Questions on this page, the Method page, and the Dog Myths page. These are very thorough; they cover most common questions that dog owners might have about their dogs or The Perfect Dog System.
If this is not enough reassurance, please be encouraged by one happy customer who wrote to Don personally:
“When I was waiting for your disks to arrive in the mail, I saw a posted rate of $125 per hour for phone consulting on your site. I thought, “That’s good to know. If there are any gaps or special problems, I may have to pay, but I can get real, accurate answers. It’s not just, ‘good luck with your DVD’s.’ ” Then after I got and watched the DVDs, I thought, “Wow! I can’t think of a single thing he left out or that I would ask. This guy has done a GREAT job of putting things together! It’s all there.” I almost went ahead and booked a phone consultation just to say thanks personally.” (Larry B., Tampa, FL)
Don Sullivan’s System is truly set apart from all other training available today, as explained more fully in many of the FAQs, and also on the “Method” page of this website. So, despite the struggles and failed attempts that you may have experienced thus far, and despite your belief that the situation with your particular dog is unique and unsolvable, Don guarantees that you will begin to see a positive change in your dog’s behavior within minutes of properly applying his techniques. The 30 day money back guarantee (full purchase price less shipping and handling; no questions asked) demonstrates the confidence that Don has in his program. Our Customer Feedback page includes many testimonies of dog owners who were shocked and thrilled to be able to finally resolve intense problem behavior that they believed was impossible to fix.
Don Sullivan’s training methods will work for you and your dog, no matter how unique you might perceive the situation with your dog to be. This includes all,
1) Breeds: including cat-like breeds, hunting breeds, show dogs, and working dogs,
2) Ages: 9 week old puppies to the old family dog,
3) Sizes: miniature to giant dogs,
5) Body types: hairless dogs to thick, woolly dogs
6) Personalities: timid to hyperactive dogs, stubborn to even aggressive dogs; even most obsessive compulsive disorders,
7) Instincts: from the drive to roam to the drive to hunt,
8) Intelligence levels: Don’s says that all dogs are as intelligent as we need them to be,
9) Past training: from none at all to “treat obsessed”, and
10) Past experiences of your dog: from utterly spoiled to sadly abused.
Physiologically, dogs can be very different, yet psychologically there are some key elements which connect them all. Don Sullivan recognizes these connecting elements and he uses them as a foundation for effective communication with all dogs. Even owners of deaf dogs can successfully apply Don’s training methods. This is covered in more detail in Question 13 (Q13) of the FAQs.
Q4: DO THE TRAINING DVDS COVER MY DOG’S PARTICULAR PROBLEM BEHAVIOR? Read a detailed explanation of all the topics covered in Don Sullivan’s two disc training DVD set.
A: Don Sullivan’s DVD training set is fully comprehensive. From a theoretical point of view, the DVDs give you a thorough understanding of the philosophy behind Don’s training System. On the practical side, the DVDs cover everything from basic and advanced commands, dealing with a host of problem behaviors, creating boundary line safety, to even teaching your dog how to swim!
Within the 5 hours of instruction that Don Sullivan has included in his DVDs, you will find the answers to almost any variable that may arise with your dog. The training DVDs include over 70 different segments and a multitude of techniques to deal with all common behavioral problems. If you do not see your dog’s particular behavior problem listed below with its own segment heading, you will be able to effectively apply one or more techniques discussed and demonstrated in the other segments to find a successful solution. For example, the issue of a dog eating its own feces is not directly dealt with in the DVDs, but you can use the same techniques taught in the “Counter Surfing” segment to correct this problem.
All of Don’s training techniques can be applied with multiple dogs, simultaneously.
The following is a complete list of topics covered, including detailed descriptions:
Training Philosophy: In-depth theory behind Don Sullivan’s training method.
Golden Rules: The critical points to remember when training your dog.
Training & Treats (the detrimental effects): Why Don Sullivan discourages the use of food bribery as a method of training/motivation; how treat training achieves limited and often superficial results compared to Don Sullivan’s techniques.
Children & Training: How to successfully incorporate your children into the training process and the key issues to remember when doing this.
Verbal Baiting: How to avoid common enticements that will undermine your training success.
Incorporating Training into Daily Routine: How to save time by training your dog in everyday real life situations, as you interact with him as part of your daily relationship together.
Trust Zone: A vision, and demonstration, of the ultimate goal every dog owner should have for his dog: Freedom.
Housebreaking: A step-by-step process to teaching your dog (whether a brand new puppy or an older dog with bad habits) to relieve himself where YOU would like him to. How to achieve success no matter what you have experienced with your dog so far, including learning to be “in tune” with your dog’s signals for needing to “go potty” outside. Note: The techniques taught in this segment, in combination with those in other segments, will help to correct the issue of “excited peeing.”
Essential Equipment: An explanation of the essential training tools to use for each dog (Command Collar®, 3 Freedom Training Lines etc.); how they operate, in what situations to use them, and the key things to remember.
Specialized Equipment: Other useful training tools to consider for specific situations; how they operate, in what scenarios to use them, and the key things to remember.
Command Collar®: A detailed demonstration of the Command Collar®; how to adjust the collar to suit your dog’s neck size; how to attach and remove the collar once sized; key things to remember.
Useless Equipment (to avoid): A discussion of other collars and dog training devices on the market; their limitations and how they can actually be detrimental to achieving successful results.
(Correcting) Pulling on the Leash: How to get your dog to stop pulling on the leash, and walk calmly with you (but not necessarily at a strict “heel” position) within minutes, no matter the struggles you have endured so far.
Sit Command: How to teach you dog to sit on command. Also, putting the “Sit” command into perspective, compared to more useful commands.
Down Command: How to teach your dog to lie down on command. Also, why this is one of the most useful commands; and how it is critical to training success, based on Don Sullivan’s training theory.
Stay Command: How to teach your dog to stay in any position (even on his bed in the house, if you want him to), for any length of time, until released.
Down from a Distance: How to teach your dog to lie down when he is at a distance from you; even if he is in the middle of running e.g. retrieving a toy.
Hidden Stay Command: How to teach your dog to remain in a “Down” position for any length of time, while you are hidden from his sight, until released. How this command can be useful. Cautions and safety measures.
Come Command: How to teach your dog to come to your side whenever you call him, no matter what he may be distracted or tempted by.
Heel Command: How to teach your dog to walk precisely by your side, without being restricted by a tight leash. How this command can be useful in certain situations, but not to be used on a regular basis.
Moving Off-Leash: How to progress from the above commands, using the Command Collar® and all 3 Freedom Training Lines, to needing no training equipment at all. How to reach the point of being “in tune” with your dog so that he not only understands and obeys the new rules and boundaries, but he actually anticipates situations and controls himself of his own accord before you even have to say anything.
Retrieving: How to teach your dog to chase after the ball/toy, bring it back, and willingly place it in your hand (without a game of tug-of-war!). Also, how to get your dog to drop the ball/toy on command; this technique can be transferred to any other objects that you wish your dog to release from his mouth e.g. if your dog likes to chew on the leash.
Playing: The importance of incorporating play time into the training process; how this works to be a key reward and motivation for obedience and good behavior.
Off-Leash Control: Why reaching the goal of having control over your dog’s actions (and, in fact, teaching your dog to curb his own temptations to disobey or misbehave) is critical to a safe, harmonious, and fulfilling dog/owner relationship.
(Thoughts on) Dog Parks: Don Sullivan discusses local dog parks; how the influence of the misbehavior that goes on in these environments can undermine your training efforts. Don offers exciting alternatives to allowing your dog to exercise and socialize in fun environments.
Swimming: Step-by-step instruction to teach your dog not to be afraid of the water; then to swim confidently and even retrieve water toys.
Fun Fetch Ball: How to use the Fun Fetch Ball to teach your dog to retrieve; how this tool can help save your arms/shoulders from the strain of continually throwing the ball/toy; how to progress to using a racket and ball to give your dog the intense cardiovascular exercise that he needs in order to burn off his excess energy (thereby limiting the potential for annoying and destructive behavior).
Socializing: The importance of teaching your dog how to harmoniously intermix with other dogs, and with other people. When to begin socializing a puppy. Key points to be aware of.
Introduction: Overview of problem dog behaviors and Don Sullivan’s approach to successfully resolving them for life.
Barking: How to stop your dog from barking, at anything, whether it be other animals, people, the doorbell, other noises, moving objects, or even as a part of his exuberant personality, no matter what you have tried to date to fix the problem.
Begging: How to stop your dog from begging or “mooching” for food. How to teach him to respectfully keep his distance while you are eating.
Bolting: How to effectively deal with your dog if he runs away from you outdoors. How to safely retrieve him, and teach him to control his temptation to bolt, no matter the intensity of the distraction or temptation.
Chasing cars/bikes/etc.: How to teach your dog to enjoy the various elements of everyday life (cars, bikes, skateboards, strollers, cats, squirrels, other dogs etc.) without chasing them, barking at them, or showing any signs of aggression, or other undesirable behavior.
Chasing & Nipping People: How to teach your dog to keep his mouth off people (adults and children); and how to remain calm and controlled as people move about him (even children running around).
Chewing Hands/Nipping: How to teach your dog to play and interact with you and other people without mouthing/chewing on your body or clothes, nipping, or showing any signs of aggression.
Chewing: The importance of providing your dog with acceptable items to chew, as one of his natural instincts and life needs. Items to avoid and examples of acceptable chew “toys.” How to stop your dog from chewing all “out of bounds” items such as household furnishings; and how to train your dog to exercise self-control so that you can trust him alone in the house, car, office etc.
Chewing on Leash: How to get your dog to stop chewing on the leash/Freedom Training Lines. (The technique for “Drop” under Retrieving is also an effective technique for solving this problem).
Clipping Nails: How to teach your dog to remain calm and controlled while you trim his nails, bathe him, administer/apply necessary medication, and generally groom him. Once you have trained him to overcome his fear, or squirminess, or unbridled energy in these situations at home, your dog will be well equipped to control his urges while at the groomer or veterinarian etc.
Counter Surfing: How to stop your dog from being a “food thief” in the kitchen, at the dinner table, during family barbecues; even when you are not present to keep an eye on him. Don Sullivan will empower you to teach your dog to respect the boundary between your food and his; from children with ice cream cones, to even being left alone at home with tempting food left on the counter.
Crazy in Car & Relax Command: How to teach your dog to ride peacefully and happily with you in the car; without jumping around, barking, whining, or behaving in any other undesirable way. How to use the “Relax” command to calm your dog in the car, or in any other situation where he is acting unruly; and how to use this command as a preventative measure before your dog acts upon his urges.
Crazy in Crate: How to teach your dog (even your brand new puppy) to rest calmly inside a training kennel (used primarily during the housebreaking process, and for travel), without barking, whining, jumping around, biting/chewing the cage, or behaving in any other undesirable manner.
Desensitization: Don Sullivan discusses situations where some dogs develop an intense sensitivity to certain situations or objects, from vacuum cleaners, or heavy traffic, to even parked cars. How to effectively deal with these situations, reprogramming your dog to rely upon his newly found confidence and emotional stability.
Digging: How to get your dog to stop digging in the yard/garden, no matter what you tried so far.
Getting into Garbage: How to stop your dog from raiding the garbage can; in the kitchen or outdoors. This same technique can also be used to discourage your dog from getting into any other household items such as boxes of kids’ toys, knitting basket, office waste basket, and closet.
Jealousy: How to teach all your dogs to live harmoniously together, to the point of even sharing a large bone together!
Jumping Up: How to stop your dog from jumping on you (adults and children), within minutes, no matter how excited they are to see you. Also, how to stop your dog from jumping on others; from guests at the door to strangers in the street.
Licking: How to stop your dog from licking your (or others’) hands, face, etc., in minutes, as you play and interact with him.
Licking – Small Dogs: Don Sullivan teaches you his simple, quick technique for stopping very tiny dogs and puppies from licking people’s hands, faces, etc.
Separation Anxiety: Don Sullivan shares his understanding of why some dogs “freak out” when left alone in the house, car, etc. He
teaches you effective techniques to reprogram your dog to calmly and confidently deal with these situations; to be accepting and trusting of your decisions to leave him alone for a certain time.
All Aggression: The various types of aggression, why they occur, and the general approach to take in dealing with them. A step-by-step approach to training an aggressive dog to control his aggressive urges, whether the source is fear or dominance. This technique can be used whether the aggression is toward people, other dogs in your home, strange dogs, or other animals e.g. cats.
Aggression towards People: Don Sullivan discusses and demonstrates specific techniques used to teach your dog to confidently and calmly interact with all people (adults and children), without him exercising any form of dominance. If followed properly, this technique will help you to redirect your dog’s mind towards a more positive channel of harmonious socialization.
Fear Aggression: Don Sullivan discusses why some dogs resort to aggression as a means of trying to deal with their fear or lack of confidence. How to effectively reprogram your dog to adopt a confident, mature and calm outlook on all situations, whether the source of his fear is people, other animals, moving objects, natural occurrences e.g. lightning, or any other.
Aggression over Food: How to teach your dog to stop being possessive over his food, whether with you, others, or with other dogs. Using Don Sullivan’s techniques you can learn how to place down or remove your dog’s food dish or bone without any resistance or challenge from your dog.
Aggression – Small Dogs: Don Sullivan discusses the traps of promoting dominant and outwardly aggressive behavior in your small dog. Key points to be aware of, and what to do when your small dog meets larger dogs.
(Thoughts on) Guard Dogs: If desired, how to maintain your dog’s protective nature (for the chance situation where it will be truly warranted) without allowing him to display dominance or aggression in regular daily life. Don Sullivan discusses building an “off-switch” into your communication with your dog, so that he understands and obeys the boundaries that you set.
Sharing Bones: The key considerations for creating harmony between all the dogs in your home, to the point of them even happily sharing a big bone together.
Perimeters & Boundaries:
Bolting out the Door: How to teach your dog to respect the boundary of an open doorway; to teach him to wait of his own accord at the doorway, until released, no matter what kinds of distractions and temptations (e.g. children playing in the front yard) are vying for his attention.
Answering the Door: How to stop your dog from bombarding the doorway whenever the doorbell rings. How to teach your dog to calmly remain at a respectful distance, and allow your guests to enter, without your dog barking, jumping, or exhibiting general over-exuberance.
Staying off the Road: A five step process for teaching your dog to never enter the roadway without your permission. This very effective technique can be used in any number of boundary line or perimeter situations (that you decide upon) either inside or outside the house.
(No more) Baby Gates: How to teach your dog to stay out of certain rooms inside the house (if this is your desire), of his own accord, without having to use physical restrictions such as baby gates or closed doors.
Freedom in the House: How to deal with your dog at home in a mature and appropriate manner, so as to help him behave acceptably within the boundaries that you have established.
Camping Boundaries: How to teach your dog to remain within your campsite radius, of his own accord, without physical restriction.
Boundary Line Caution: Important points to remember when teaching your dog to respect the boundaries and perimeters that you set around your home, by using the “Staying off the Road” training technique. Boundary line training is one of Don Sullivan’s advanced techniques, but caution must be exercised and the technique must be properly and thoroughly implemented. If you do this then the results can be astounding!
Getting in the Car: How to teach your dog to confidently enter the vehicle of his own accord, without waiting for help from you. (For those dogs that are capable)
Safe Driving: Various considerations for keeping your dog safe when he travels with you in the vehicle.
Safe Boating: Various considerations for keeping your dog safe when he goes boating with you.
Safe Hiking: Various considerations for keeping your dog safe and sufficiently hydrated when he accompanies you on a hike.
(Thoughts on) Neutering: Don Sullivan discusses his opinions on the neutering of male dogs; the pros and the cons.
Tricks & Fun Things: Don Sullivan teaches dog owners how to be creative when interacting with their dogs; he demonstrates a number of “fun things” to do with your dog, to build your relationship and to keep your dog stimulated and challenged.
Q5: COMMAND COLlar®: What kind of collar is the Command Collar®? How does it work?
A: The Command Collar® is NOT an electronic collar, shock collar, or noise emitting collar. It is manually operated and it is simply designed to emulate a mother dog’s natural corrective process. It is safe to use, lightweight, attractive, and effective.
More specifically, the Command Collar® (when used in conjunction with the 3 Freedom Training Lines and the training DVDs ) allows you to establish consistent control over your dog in all real life situations, by gaining the focus of your dog, and discouraging him from repeating any undesirable behavior.
In addition to the use of the Command Collar® and the 3 Freedom Training Lines, Don Sullivan uses a combination of hand and voice commands; with praise, play, affection, and freedom being the rewards for good behavior.
In his DVDs, Don Sullivan discusses the key differences between the Command Collar® and other collars. He also explains, with demonstrations, how to operate the Command Collar®, how to initially size it comfortably to your dog’s neck by adding or removing links, and how to attach and remove it easily from that point forward using the quick release snap. For more information on the theory behind how the Command Collar® works, please read the “Method” page on this website.
Q6: HOUSEBREAKING/POTTY TRAINING: Does The Perfect Dog System include a section on housebreaking? Will it help me potty train my dog?
A: Yes. Potty training or “housebreaking” is covered thoroughly in the training DVDs. You will find it under the “Getting Started” section of DVD one. Don Sullivan has a very successful routine that you can follow to train your dog to consistently and happily go to the bathroom where you want him to.
The following is the Housebreaking segment description, from Question #4:
Housebreaking: A step-by-step process to teaching your dog (whether a brand new puppy or an older dog with bad habits) to relieve himself where YOU would like him to. How to achieve success no matter what you have experienced with your dog so far, including learning to be “in tune” with your dog’s signals for needing to “go potty” outside. Note: The techniques taught in this segment, in combination with those in other segments, will help to correct the issue of “excited peeing.”
Q7: EXCITED PEEING: Will this System help me to solve my dog’s problem of “excited peeing”?
A: The techniques taught in the “housebreaking” segment (DVD one), in combination with the techniques in the other key segments, will help to correct the issue of “excited peeing.”
As you apply Don Sullivan’s methods, and as your dog learns to rely upon you as his pack leader, his emotional stability will increase and he will begin to control his bladder, as opposed to urinating out of overexcitement or hyperactivity.
Q8: TOO OLD/YOUNG TO TRAIN?: What is the best age to start training a dog? Is my dog too old/too young to train?
A: The ideal age to start training your dog is when you first bring your dog home, whether he is a 9 week old puppy from a breeder or an older dog from a shelter. In his DVDs, Don Sullivan explains his philosophy behind the importance of initiating training on your first day together.
Although a young puppy may be small and goofy, he is well capable of grasping all of the concepts within the training DVDs. Don Sullivan reassures dog owners that a puppy may be immature physically, but he is mentally mature enough to understand and respond to your commands and instructions. In each lesson, Don shows you how to first get your dog to comprehend what you expect. He then shows you how to motivate him to respond to your instruction, even in highly distracting or tempting situations.
If your dog is already an established member of your family, then it is not too late. Using Don’s System you can easily create a new and exceedingly better future with your dog the very day that the System arrives at your door; no matter how old he is, and no matter how seemingly well entrenched his bad habits are.
Don Sullivan says that the old statement, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks,” is an unfortunate myth that has lead many people to believe that their dogs are too old to train, even when the dogs are as young as 2 years!
The truth is that a dog never stops thinking in the same way, regarding pack relationships and order, from birth to death. So, if an effective training System is used, then an older dog will train just as well as a younger dog.
The “old dog” myth has arisen only because people have found that their dogs have become resistant to ineffective training methods. Don Sullivan says that a 12 year old dog is not diminished in his ability to understand what is requested of him, and he will obey if he respects the leadership of the person giving the instruction. The Perfect Dog System is a proven success, and Don Sullivan shows you how to quickly become your dog’s respected leader.
Q9: FUN FETCH BALL: Does the Fun Fetch Ball come with Don Sullivan’s “Secrets to Training the Perfect Dog” System?
A: The Fun Fetch Ball is sold separately from The Perfect Dog System. You will be given the option to add the Fun Fetch Ball to your order once you add the Complete System to your cart, or you can order it on its own by going to “Accessories.”
Note: Due to the fast paced nature of the “Secrets to Training the Perfect Dog” infomercial, some people have mistakenly assumed that the Fun Fetch Ball is offered as a free gift with the System. However, the infomercial states, “When you call, ask the operator how you can get the Fun Fetch Ball; the perfect tool for teaching your dog to retrieve.” We apologize for any confusion. The Fun Fetch Ball is a great value product and is certainly worth adding to your purchase. For more information on the Fun Fetch Ball, please refer to Question 78 (Q78).
Q10: GUARANTEE: Does Don Sullivan’s “Secrets to Training the Perfect Dog” System come with a money back guarantee?
A: Yes. If you are unhappy with The Perfect Dog System for any reason whatsoever, simply return it within 30 days and you will receive a full refund, less shipping and handling costs; no questions asked.
Q11: ACCESSORIES: I have the Complete System. I didn’t buy any accessories at the time, but now I have changed my mind and I would like to order some. How do I do this?
A:You can simply go to the “Accessories” page of the ordering website and add the accessories that you desire to your cart, or you can call a customer service representative and s/he will help you.
Q12: EXTRA LINKS TO INCREASE SIZE OF COLLAR: I have a dog with an extra thick neck. Can I purchase extra links to make the large Command Collar® longer?
A:The Company is currently working on adding “Extra Links – SMALL” and “Extra Links – LARGE” to the “Accessories” options on the ordering website. Please keep checking back with us. They should be available soon.
Q13: HEARING IMPAIRED DOGS: My dog is completely deaf. Will I still be able to train him using Don’s System?
A: Yes. You will need to combine the hand signals that Don Sullivan teaches in his DVDs, with the use of the Command Collar® (supplied in The Perfect Dog Complete System) AND the use of an electronic vibration alert collar. (Electronic collars with a vibration mode are widely available, from pet stores and via the internet). If you do this, you will be able to achieve very surprising results when working with your deaf dog. Don Sullivan discusses equipment, such as the use of the vibration mode on an electronic collar, on his training DVDs.
More specifically, you will be able to apply a large majority of Don Sullivan’s training methods using the equipment provided in The Perfect Dog System (Command Collar® and 3 Freedom Training Lines), in conjunction with the hand signals and specific correction techniques instructed on the DVDs. However, there will be situations where you will also need to implement the aid of the vibration collar to attract the attention of your dog before you issue a command or instruction.
Q14: HEARING IMPAIRED DOG OWNERS: Are the training DVDs closed captioned, or do they have subtitles, for hearing impaired dog owners?
A: The Company is looking into this, but it will be a while before DVDs with closed captioning are available. Please keep checking back with us.
Q15: WHEELCHAIR: I use a wheelchair. Will I still be able to train my dog using Don Sullivan’s System?
A: Depending on the personality and physical strength of your dog, you may find situations that will require assistance from another person. However, this will mostly occur during the first couple of weeks when you begin to work with your dog. As you gain your dog’s respect, he will become easier to handle on your own.
Q16: BLIND DOGS: My dog is blind. Can I still train her using Don Sullivan’s System?
A: Yes, however you will need to limit the degree of off-leash freedom that you eventually give her, to ensure her safety. You will not be able to use the hand signals that Don teaches you, but that will not be an issue as long as your dog can hear your voice commands and instructions.
Q17: WHY 3 FREEDOM TRAINING LINES FOR EACH DOG?: Why are there 3 different lines in the Freedom Training Line set?
A:The Freedom Training Line Set includes: 1 x 10 foot line, 1 x 3 foot line, and 1 x 6 inch line. The three different lines are used for different locations and training exercises e.g. whether inside or outside the house; and whether working on boundary line training or the “Down” command. Each line also represents a different stage in the training process and assists in reaching the goal of the “Trust Zone.” The “Trust Zone” is the point at which an owner can trust his dog to “behave,” regardless of distractions and temptations, without needing to be restrained by a leash or collar.
Note: Do you have more than one dog? You will need to order an Extra Equipment Set (which includes a Command Collar®, your choice of small or large size; and a Set of 3 Freedom Training Lines, one size suits all dogs) for each additional dog that needs training. You will be given the option to add Extra Equipment Sets to your order once you add the Complete System to your cart.
Q18: IS SUCCESS JUST DEPENDENT ON THE COLLAR?: Is success with The Perfect Dog System really just dependent on the Command Collar®, or is there more to it than that?
A: Your success will be dependent on all elements of Don Sullivan’s System. To be able to properly implement Don Sullivan’s training techniques, you need to use the Command Collar® in conjunction with the Freedom Training Lines Set; and you need to watch the training DVDs thoroughly in order know how to use the equipment to communicate with your dog and motivate him to follow your lead. Don Sullivan’s DVDs are jammed packed full of information such that you will not only learn how to effectively use the training equipment, you will also learn to be “in tune” with your dog so that you can begin to relate to each other on a different, more productive, harmonious, joyful and rewarding level.
Q19: HOW LONG TO USE EQUIPMENT?: How long will my dog have to use the Command Collar® and Freedom Training Lines? Will I know when to leave the equipment on my dog?
A: The Command Collar® and Freedom Training Lines are temporary devices to aid in the effective training of your dog. Most people are able to reach the point of the “Trust Zone” within 4 to 8 weeks (though many people achieve their goals in shorter periods of time). The “Trust Zone” is the point at which an owner can trust his dog to “behave,” regardless of distractions and temptations, without needing to be restrained by a leash or collar. If your goal of using Don’s System is to simply solve a few errant behavioral problems, then you will most likely need the equipment for a shorter period of time.
The Perfect Dog System includes a detailed explanation of the process by which you can transition from using all the training equipment, to none at all, at a pace that you are comfortable with. Don Sullivan also clearly instructs you when your dog should wear the training equipment, and when it should be removed.
Q20: WHERE TO START?: Where do I begin when I receive my System?
A: The Perfect Dog System comes with a Quick Start Guide. This is ESSENTIAL reading BEFORE doing any training with your dog. It contains very important information regarding the training equipment, the training DVDs, and the key points to remember. The Quick Start Guide lists the foundational segments to watch first and it tells you what steps to take from there.
It is not necessary to watch both DVDs in their entirety before beginning any training with your dog. However, those who try to absorb as much information as possible, as their first step, generally obtain the best results.
Q21: BREED INSTINCTS: I have heard some say that it is impossible to train certain breeds to override their instincts. Is this true?
A: There are many common statements to do with dog breed instincts such as, 1) “You can never trust a Beagle off of a leash because once he gets on a scent, he won’t come back,” 2) “Sight dogs will always chase after prey,” 3) “Cat-like breeds don’t respond to dog training,” and 4) “Certain breeds are born with dominant or protective tendencies and you can’t change it.”
Although certain instincts within various breeds are a reality and can be encouraged and enhanced for specific purposes (such as hunting or rescue work), it does not mean that these dogs are incapable of overriding their behavior. Once a dog learns to respect (and not just understand) his owner’s commands, he will begin to exercise self-restraint according to his owner’s expectations. Using Don Sullivan’s System, you will learn to “read” your dog, anticipate his urges, and also reprogram his “mind-set” towards your wishes, for his happiness and safety.
Dog breed instincts are like natural born skills, but dogs do not have to act upon them in order to be happy or fulfilled in their lives. The contentment they received from following their instincts can be sufficiently replaced by other activities such as retrieving, off-leash play, and general freedom to accompany you in your day-to-day life.
Q22: HUNTING DOGS, SHOW DOGS, AND SEARCH & RESCUE DOGS: I have a dog that is a confirmation show dog, as well as a hunting dog. Will this method conflict with hunting training methods or in the show ring? Also, we train and use Search and Rescue dogs. After using this program, will our dogs and puppies still bark when they find their victim, or in case of our HRD dogs, will they still dig to indicate?
A: Don Sullivan teaches you how to establish boundaries with your dogs so that they are aware of, and obey, the rules that you set for them. You need to decide what you will allow and what you will not. Don then empowers you to communicate this to your dogs and train them to discipline themselves i.e. to respect your wishes. So, you can teach your dog never to dig at home, but still dig to indicate. You can teach your dog not to bark at home, but still bark when he finds a victim. And, you can teach your dog to never chase after the ducks at the local park, but still hunt in the field.
The Perfect Dog System will help you to gain a more attentive and respectful dog in general, so that he performs better in the field or show ring. You will be able to choose which commands you desire to teach your dog, once you have watched through the DVDs and determined what will work best in your particular situation.
Q23: TRAINING BY MORE THAN ONE PERSON AND NON-FAMILY MEMBERS: Can Don Sullivan’s System be easily used by all family members, and how this will impact on the “pack leadership” situation? What about non-family members such as our housekeeper who spends a lot of time with the dog?
A: Don Sullivan’s System can be easily implemented by any family member, as long as the person is old enough to comprehend the concept of Don’s training method. In fact, Don recommends that every member of the household should be involved in the training process, to maximize the results. (Please exercise caution when young children are in the presence of your untrained dog, most particularly if your dog has aggressive tendencies). Don recommends that the adults begin the training process and then gradually involve the children at the parent’s discretion.
Dogs operate on a hierarchy where each dog has a place in the pack. Though there is one ultimate leader, all the subordinates will have established a place for themselves on the “social ladder”. All family members (even the housekeeper and gardener) will be able to be leaders of the dog, as long as everyone follows the same methodology, properly and thoroughly, as instructed on the DVDs. Even if one person spends the most time with the dog, it is still important for all members to work with the dog during the training process. One person can always lead the way, taking the first few days to effect some positive changes in the dog’s behavior. Then, others can step in, either simultaneously or in stages. This will make it easier for them because the dog will already be accepting of a new order of things within the family.
The goal of each family member should be to gain the respect of the dog so that the dog will follow their lead and obey their instructions without challenge. It does not matter which person ultimately arises as the overall “pack leader.” As long as all members effectively reposition themselves to be above the dog, the dog will be attentive to them all. Importantly, each person must be actively involved in rewarding the dog, as an integral part of the training process; offering praise, affection, play and, ultimately freedom, to the dog (but NEVER any treats!).
Q24: TIMID/FEARFUL DOGS: I have a very timid, fearful dog. He gets traumatized easily by so many different things, and he often urinates when he feels overwhelmed or scared. Will your System help him gain confidence and a sense of stability?
A: Many dogs can be born lacking confidence. Others develop this behavior as a result of their experiences. These dogs may react (with simple shyness to extreme fear, and even aggression) to a number of situations such as the way certain people dress, young children, moving objects, loud noises, lightning, and fireworks etc. To best help a dog that lacks confidence, we must establish ourselves as a solid leader in the dog’s mind; someone he can consistently turn to and rely upon when situations arise that cause him to be fearful.
Often, timidity can be exacerbated when a dog’s fears are unwittingly reinforced by the people he lives with, as they deal with him in a passive, submissive manner. The dog ends up adopting the leadership role by default. Having no one to put complete trust and confidence in, and being incapable of dealing with things effectively on his own, he becomes ever more fearful. Interestingly, in his natural environment, this dog would not have arisen as leader within his dog pack.
In some cases, if not handled properly, a timid dog can also develop what is referred to as “fear aggression.” Fear aggression occurs when the “fight or flight” mechanism within a timid dog is stimulated. If the dog is not able to flee from the source of its fear, it can resort to the use of aggression to attempt to drive away whatever it is afraid of.
In many cases, rescue dogs are adopted into loving homes where much care is given to them, but because of a lack of understanding on the part of the new owners, most of the “baggage” that the dogs come with never leaves them. This is an unfortunate situation because this means that the dogs, although in new and better environments, will still suffer throughout the balance of their lives due to these unresolved issues.
Interestingly, if a dog was to be “rescued” from a traumatic environment and placed to live solely with a pack of dogs, with no further human intervention, the established leader of that pack would not give any consideration to the new arrival’s history. The new dog would be quickly indoctrinated into the pack and expected to comply with all pack rules, as reinforced by the dominant leader. Upon acceptance of these rules, the new dog would find stability, comfort, and contentment in his new environment.
Don Sullivan’s “Secrets to Training the Perfect Dog” System will give you all the information and tools you need to become your dog’s trusted leader, so that he can relax and defer to you in all situations. Depending upon the dog and the source of fear, results can vary from dramatic overnight and complete cures, to an increase in the dog’s overall confidence level in a particular situation over a period of time.
Q25: AGGRESSION: My Red bone Coonhound that has become very aggressive towards my neutered Lab/Dalmatian mix. It has gotten to the point where all my mix has to do is walk past the Coonhound and the Coonhound attacks. He is also starting to growl at my family members and myself, even when I’m just trying to put hi s leash on him. Would this System be of any help, or are things past the point of being able to help him?
A: Aggression is covered in-depth on Don Sullivan’s training DVDs. Dogs can become increasingly more aggressive in environments where they have been allowed to express their dominance without it being EFFECTIVELY corrected. Don explains that aggression is not removed solely by correcting the actual act of aggression, but also by establishing leadership over the dog first in other non-aggression related training issues.
Most dogs’ aggression is correctable, often in a surprisingly short time period, providing an owner follows the instructions and applies Don’s techniques consistently and at an appropriate level for his individual dog. Don shows you the safest way to handle aggressive dogs so that results can be achieved with the least degree of stress.
Q26: INVISIBLE FENCING: We are currently using an invisible fence to keep our two dogs from leaving the yard. Will the Command Collars™ interfere with the invisible fencing system, or do they need to be used separately?
A: You can still use invisible fencing in conjunction with The Perfect Dog System. Because the Command Collar® is not electronic (it is manually operated, using the Freedom Training Lines), it will not interfere with the operation of the electronic invisible fence. However, The Perfect Dog System does include thorough segments on boundary line training. Don Sullivan uses a very successful method to teach your dog to remain within the perimeters that you set around your home (and to stay away from any other “out of bounds” areas). You might like to try this as well.
Q27: CHANGES IN MINUTES?: Using The Perfect Dog System, how will my dog change within minutes?
A: Don Sullivan’s System is not a magical wand. All of your dog’s problems will not suddenly disappear overnight. However, we guarantee that you will begin to witness positive changes in your dog’s behavior as soon as you start using The Perfect Dog System, as long as you apply the techniques as instructed.
Once you have watched the training DVDs thoroughly, and once you understand the “essence” of Don’s training method, you will be empowered to effectively implement the various techniques, stage by stage. As you start training, you will immediately begin seeing positive changes in your dog’s behavior, and his good behavior will grow exponentially as you progress through the DVD segments.
Q28: WILL IT CHANGE MY DOG’S PERSONALITY? Will using this System change my dog’s personality? I still want him to be the same “goofy” dog, only better, and sometimes it is his mischievousness that makes him so endearing.
A: Your dog will be just as playful, energetic, and “goofy,” but with an element of maturity, respecting what is allowed and what is not. Sometimes it takes a short while for dogs to adjust to the new boundaries that have been set, but once he clearly understands the new rules, he will relax, and his personality will shine. More importantly, he will be happier; more content and fulfilled, as you begin to trust in his good behavior and reward him with the freedom that he needs and deserves!
Note: It must be understood that there is a difference between a playful personality and mischievousness. A dog can be playful and still obedient. A dog that is mischievous is one that, knowing the rules, chooses to test and defy. This is not acceptable and should not be desired as an endearing trait; otherwise it will negatively affect the dog’s overall attitude and responsiveness toward your attempt at leadership.
Q29: GUARD DOGS: We want our dogs to be good security dogs. If they become very obedient after the training, do you think they will still be protective and territorial?
A: Don covers this well in the segment, “Guard dogs,” on his training DVDs. You will be able to train your dogs so that they discern between what is allowed and what is not, and also to obediently “switch” off the barking as soon as you tell them to.
Many people who get a dog hope that their dog will become a good protector of home and family. Unfortunately, they allow their dog to develop protective traits without having control over the will of their dog, and they end up living with a dog that grows increasingly more threatening to even welcomed guests. Having obedient dogs will allow you to have control over the decision making process of how much protective behavior you allow.
Don Sullivan’s System will show you how to have an “off switch” that will allow you, your guests, and friendly strangers to interact comfortably with your dogs. Your dogs will learn to be more discerning when it comes to situations that may be perceived as warranting protective behavior so that you (and your neighbors) don’t have to live with unbridled, unnecessary barking, or other aggressive behavior.
Q30: SOCIALIZATION: My dog does not socialize well with people. Will The Perfect Dog System help me solve this problem?
A: Socializing is an issue that can be frustrating to deal with because most people hope that they are going to have a dog that happily fits in with their lives and is friendly with the people they meet. Many dogs are simply born lacking confidence. Unfortunately, much of the methodology that is currently being used by many in an attempt to deal with this issue can often be responsible for making the problem even worse. Any discomfort that a dog is experiencing around people must be addressed for the mental peace of the dog as well as the safety of any person that may come into contact with the dog.
Don Sullivan’s System will show you how to effectively and safely help your dog to become socially comfortable with people. On the training DVDs, Don Sullivan specifically shares with you his unique thoughts on this subject and offers a demonstration of how to practically apply his techniques.