How do we develop and utilise intuition to be a better trainer!

Intuition is largely still seen as an esoteric concept.  The fact is that a good trainer is intuitive.  People often refer to this as being ‘animal people’.  What is intuition?  Science tells us that in order to be intuitive, we have to be in the present moment and in a feeling state.  The ‘alpha’ state is the term used for this state.  In this state, for example, we look at and appreciate a sunrise.  The moment we put our feelings into words, we are in the judgemental ‘beta’ state – no longer feeling the experience.  We are able to flip from state to state, however we can only access the ‘alpha’ state when we are relaxed and free from fear, judgement, desire or any other emotion that takes us out of being in the present moment.


We need to practise being intuitive in order to recognise the state and access it.  Here are some tips that can assist this.


  • PAT YOURSELF ON THE BACK.  When a trainer’s intuition bears them fruit, they are encouraged recall the feelings they felt at the time of the experience so they can recognise the feeling the next time.
  • PLAY.  We are in relationship with some incredible animals, and if we are able to play, we will have fun. This fun will be mirrored in them creating an atmosphere conducive to intuition.  When we are having fun, we are in an intuitive state
  • OBSERVE! OBSERVE! OBSERVE!  Observations yield vital information such as personal nuances of different animals, the social influences that are occurring in their lives, and what works or does not work to motivate that animal.  This is data that will be used intuitively.  In our facilities, observation is considered vital to achieve successful relationship with animals.
  • SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS WHEN TRAINING.  We focus on creating well-founded relationship which builds trainer confidence.  Confident trainers are more likely to experience intuition.
  • FLEXIBILITY.  When you’re training does not go according to plan, be flexible.  Adapt and don’t take the situation personally.  When you judge yourself or the animal you cannot be intuitive.
  • EXERCISES.  Practise when you are not training.  Simple exercises such as imagining who is calling when your cell phone rings.
  • NO HESITATION.  Trainers are encouraged, from the outset, to operate decisively.  The phrase they hear over and over is, ‘if you are going to mess up, do it properly.’  Hesitation and a lack of confidence provide opportunity for trainers to doubt themselves, and this is not conducive to the use of intuition.
  1. An awareness of the state of mind with which trainers go into the session is vital.  For example, if we are feeling fearful we need to acknowledge that feeling, and deal with it before entering a session.  If we become anxious during a session, it is better to redirect the session or even end it, so that we can evaluate our situation and then proceed once we have more clarity.  This ensures that we are focussed on the task at hand, and allows us to access our intuition.
  2. We all know that entering into a power game with the animal can end up in an unsuccessful downward spiral.  These scenarios are motivated by our ego.  Our focus in these scenarios is the behaviour and not the animal.  If you are feeling down and negative don’t do the training session.
  3. Open communication helps ensure a relaxed atmosphere.  Ensure that where this important, it occurs.


In conclusion, our passion to communicate effectively with the animals we train is paramount.  If we enter every interaction with them with enthusiasm, we will succeed.  Enthusiasm is from the Greek word that means ‘the God within’.  When we are enthusiastic, we are definitely in a state where we can be intuitive.

For more info PH SUPERDOGS 073 507 6071