New App Helps Dog Owners Train Fearful and Anxious Dogs
Pet owners with dogs that experience fear and anxiety triggered by various sounds and loud noises can now turn their smart devices into the first fully automated dog training tool with the launch of the TrainAway mobile application in the Google Play and Apple App store.
TrainAway is designed to prevent, reduce or eliminate negative animal behaviors that are triggered by sound. Users choose one of nearly 100 professionally recorded sounds, such as doorbells, fireworks, thunder, footsteps and more. The app will play the sounds in a semi-random pattern, dictated by the user’s settings and the apps built in safeguards, at low volumes so the dog does not experience stress. Over time, the fearful dog will become desensitized to the sounds that previously triggered a negative reaction.
“Kevin Henry, the co-founder of TrainAway, came up with the idea for TrainAway when he was expecting the arrival of his first child. He wanted to do everything he could to make sure that his two large dogs were prepared for the new addition to his family,” said Kris Lawson, CEO and certified dog trainer. “Kevin and I have been friends since childhood. When we started working together professionally, we knew the app we developed could potentially help thousands of dogs who suffer from noise anxiety.”
TrainAway works with the speakers built into a phone or tablet, but it performs best when paired with an external speaker that can reach a higher volume. It’s recommended that users combine multiple sounds to more accurately replicate an event. For example, a doorbell is generally the last in a sequence of events, so it’s paired with other noises that often accompany that sound, such as footsteps, a car approaching, etc.
In addition to the sound desensitizing, Lawson and Henry are currently working on adding a function that would allow the app to connect to a treat dispenser that would be triggered in a progressively increasing pattern as the sounds are played.
“When it comes to pets, training or shaping their behavior is only half the battle. Reinforcing these behaviors is where the majority of time is spent. Our goal with TrainAway is to create better-trained dogs and happier owners by automating the reinforcement phase. Imagine if the sound of your doorbell cued your dog to run to their bed to await a treat, leaving you to sign for your pizza or collect a package with ease,” said Lawson.
The TrainAway app is currently available for purchase for $1.99 on the Google Play & Apple App Store.