Monday, February 6, 2012

Work Work Work!

It has been a busy, go go go 2012 already, but that doesn't mean it's all work and no play....or...well, sleep for those really grueling days....  

After a long day of filming, I often cap off my evening with some much needed quiet time with just me and the animals.  This peaceful time is an important element in the trainer/animal relationship as it builds trust, understanding, and unity.  One of the most frequently asked questions is "How? How do you train these wild animals?!"  Typically, my response is simple, "A lot of patience!"  That is certainly true, but it takes a WHOLE LOT more than that. To successfully train wild animals such as these, I must use an elaborate recipe of time, patience, love, and positive reinforcement, also know as Operant Conditioning.  In the end, the result is mutual respect and admiration.  I love coming to work, and my long and laboring hours spent here are rewarded twofold by the relationships that I have built and maintain with my four-legged, furry babies.  I wouldn't trade them for any money or vacations in the world.            
Heather, Kali (bottom), & Khia (top) taking a "catnap"
after a hard day's work filming

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