Critical Thinking Skills with Dr Suzanne Hetts and Dr Dan Estep

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Episode - 18  July 2020

Host: Barbara Heidenreich

Guest: Dr Suzanne Hetts and Dr Dan Estep

Are you one of those trainers who gobbles up as much information about training as you possibly can? Do you ever question that information, or do you immediately accept it as valid? It can be challenging to know how to evaluate resources, especially if you are new to the field or when the information is presented in a manner that can make it appear to be supported by science.  Certified Applied Animal Behaviorists Dr Suzanne Hetts and Dr Dan Estep give listeners insights into what it takes to be a critical thinker when evaluating resources related to animal training. Learn how to differentiate between types of publications. We also dissect how to think critically when evaluating references. You might also be surprised to discover some of the big hurdles that can prevent people from embracing the data.  This episode is a great listen for the progressive animal trainer.


Links to Resources:

Behavior Education Network

Animal Behavior Associates

Pet Pro Webinars

Animal Behavior Society - Applied Animal Behavior Division

In this episode we discuss how both Dr Hetts and Dr Estep have categorized their publications in their CVs. Click on their names to see these categorizations.


Guest Bio:

Dr. Suzanne Hetts has worked with pet owners and pet professionals for over 25 years.  Suzanne has helped thousands of pet owners improve their pets’ behavior and relationships.  She is often called upon to consult with animal professionals, veterinarians, dog trainers, humane societies and personal injury attorneys to help them understand and work with animal issues.

Dr. Hetts and her husband, Dr. Dan Estep, are co-owners of Animal Behavior Associates, Inc., a behavior consulting firm in Littleton, Colorado. Their firm provides behavior education products and services to pet parents and pet professionals throughout North America and other countries through their websites www.BehaviorEducationNetwork.com , www.AnimalBehaviorAssociates.com and www.PetProWebinars.com.  Suzanne co-founded the pet loss education program at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital at CSU (now part of the Argus Center) and created all the initial materials for the Behavior Help-Line at the Denver Dumb Friends League, as well as administered that program from 1991-1994.

Dr. Hetts is a popular, award winning international speaker and author of one of AAHA’s best selling titles Pet Behavior Protocols, and co-author of the award winning books Raising A Behaviorally Healthy Puppy and Help! I’m Barking and I Can’t Be Quiet.   Suzanne has lectured on 5 continents to both pet owners and pet professionals and also consults with major corporations in the pet industry.   Suzanne is a past columnist for Dog Watch and a contributor to Animal Wellness magazine and her articles have appeared in both popular dog magazines and professional journals.  Dr. Hetts’ publications and videos are used in nationwide training programs for animal caretakers and pet owners.

Dr. Hetts has a Ph.D. in zoology, with a specialization in animal behavior from Colorado State University.  Suzanne is an affiliate member of AVMA, CVMA and AVSAB.  She is certified by the Animal Behavior Society as an applied animal behaviorist and has served on many boards and committees for the Association of Pet Dog Trainers, the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, The Delta Society and the Animal Behavior Society.  She and Dan share their lives with rescued elderly Dalmatian Ashley, and diva-dog Coral, a field-bred Irish setter.

Dr. Estep received his doctorate in Psychology with a specialization in animal behavior from the University of Florida.  He is certified by the Animal Behavior Society as an Applied Animal Behaviorist.

He is a member of several professional and scholarly organizations including the Animal Behavior Society, the International Society for Applied Ethology, The Delta Society, The Association of Pet Dog Trainers and the National Animal Control Association. He holds affiliate membership status in the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior and the Colorado Veterinary Medical Association.

He taught animal behavior classes to undergraduate, graduate, and veterinary students for 16 years at the University of Georgia.  He has written over 40 scientific publications dealing with animal behavior and has given numerous lectures to professional and lay organizations including the National Animal Control Association, The American Humane Association, The Humane Society of the United States and The American Animal Hospital Association.

Since 1993, Dr. Estep has taught animal behavior to animal control officers in NACA’s Training Academy and to veterinary technicians at The Bel-Rae Institute since 1997.  He is currently co-owner and Vice-President of Animal Behavior Associates, Inc., an animal behavior consulting firm in Littleton, Colorado.


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