21 Mar

Looking back: Our 11th annual conference

On February 23 – 24, 2019, we held the 11th annual
Art and Science of Animal Training Conference.
Here are our favorite highlights from the event.

A World-Class Event

Our 200 conference attendees came from 31 US states and six foreign countries, including Canada, Denmark, England, France, Italy, and Mexico. Attendees included dog trainers, horse trainers, bird trainers, veterinarians, zoo and aquarium professionals, and passionate pet owners.

2019 Anderson Award Recipient

We honored English dog trainer Kay Laurence as the fourth recipient of the Edward L. Anderson Jr. Award. Kay’s creativity has given the training community many new ideas, from microshaping to GENABACAB. We also recognized Kay for her training philosophy, which is always focused on the dog’s welfare and on creating considerate human-animal interactions. read more

14 Mar

Kay Laurence receives the 2019 Anderson Award

The Edward L. Anderson Jr. Award honors individuals who have helped translate scientific knowledge into practical training procedures, develop innovative new training methods and techniques, and educate others about the science of behavior and its application to animal training.

In February 2019 at our 11th annual Art and Science of Animal Training Conference, we honored Kay Laurence as the fourth recipient of the Anderson Award.

Kay has been an innovator in the world of animal training. She is always pushing ahead and giving us new ideas about training. At the beginning of our award ceremony, Dr. Jesús Rosales-Ruiz described how he met Kay some fifteen years before and explained in detail why we chose Kay as this year’s award recipient. read more

21 Dec

Training Orangutans for Conservation

One of our Art and Science of Animal Training Conference speakers, Barbara Heidenreich, recently returned from a trip to Indonesia. Barbara has been partnering with Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation and the Oregon Zoo to work on training and conservation projects with young orangutans.

We were thrilled when Barbara sent us a short report and some photos from her recent trip. You can hear even more about this fascinating project during Barbara’s lecture at our 2019 Art and Science of Animal Training Conference. We still have some tickets available for the conference. read more

26 Apr

Looking back: Our 9th annual conference

On February 25 – 26, 2017, we held the 9th annual Art and Science of Animal Training Conference in Irving, Texas (near Dallas). Here are some of our favorite highlights and pictures from the event.

2017 ASAT ORCA conference group photo

Attendees came from far and wide

This year’s conference sold out in six weeks, the fastest ever in our nine-year history. We also had a more diverse audience than ever before.

Our 180 conference attendees came from 28 US states and eight foreign countries, including Canada, Mexico, England, Spain, Germany, Italy, Austria, and Japan. Slightly more than half of the attendees were first-time attendees. read more

03 Mar

Bob Bailey and Marian Breland Bailey receive the 2016 Edward L. Anderson Jr. Award

2016 ASAT ORCA conference bannerAt the 2016 Art and Science of Animal Training Conference, we were thrilled to honor the first recipients of a new award, the Edward L. Anderson Jr. Award. The ceremony took place at our Saturday night banquet dinner.

If you’ve been part of the animal training community for any amount of time (or even if you’re not an animal trainer), you are probably aware that animal training has evolved A LOT over the past century. We have a much greater knowledge of basic behavior principles and also a much better understanding of the behavior of both domesticated and wild animals. Modern trainers regard animals as intelligent, emotional creatures that are able to learn all sorts of complex behaviors and concepts! read more

18 Jan

Something wicked this way comes: A brief history of the “Wicked Minds” Conference

The ORCA conference…

The Art and Science of Animal Training Conference…

The Wicked Minds Conference…

Over the years, our conference has been known by a few different names. In this post, we’ll share a bit more about the history of our conference and why it truly is a “wicked” event.

The six wicked minds of the Wicked Minds Conference

The ORCA Conference

The first Art and Science of Animal Training Conference was organized in 2009 by ORCA, the Organization for Reinforcement Contingencies with Animals. The conference has two main purposes. Its first goal is to increase our understanding of animal training and of the science of animal behavior. Its other main objective is to create a conference that will be useful and inspiring for both experts and beginners. read more