To make a brighter future for humane dog training, we have to look back to our past, the written word of one great man who loved the dogs, Bill Tarrant. "I think the dog continually reminds us that we ought to realize that there's a God."
Bill Tarrant, He Loved the Dog, by Mike Gould, 1995
I wanted to take the opportunity to pay tribute to a man that I respect, admire and miss every day, Bill Tarrant. His final mission in life was to take the whip out of the trainer's hand, to train dogs through intimacy and not intimidation. It's been said he could have been the greatest dog man of our time. In 1973 he put his pen to paper and reached millions of readers in Field & Stream Magazine as their Gun Dog Editor. Bill wanted to make the world a better place for the dogs, on November 22nd, 1998 Bill Tarrant passed, but his words and love for the dogs will never die.
I was introduced to Bill through Mike Gould. Bill was a major advocate of Mikes' style of training. Bill stood up for the program that we worked so hard to build, he came to visit us, wrote about us and believed that we as trainers could truly make a difference in the dog training world. Due to crippling arthritis, he could no longer walk behind a dog in the field, although his body was giving up, his mind was reeling with theories that he physically could not prove by himself. That's where Mike and I came in.
We helped Bill prove that when you bond with the dogs, a look of discouragement hurts that dog more than any type of physical abuse some trainers still inflict on the dogs. He helped us by getting the truth in training out to the American public, and we have to continue that fight, for Bill and most importantly for the future of the dogs.