Browse Our Dictionary Alphabetically
Section I

iCalmDog

A small portable speaker that plays music from Through A Dog’s Ear.  It is marketed as useful for calming dogs whilst they are traveling.

Illusion Collar

A collar, created by the Cesar Millan company, with a loop at the base of the neck and a second loop behind the ears.  The Illusion collar is designed to give the owner increased control and discourage the dog from pulling.  The collar works because dogs have a bundle of nerves at the base of the ears, meaning they will interpret pressure from the leash as more painful than it would be if it was on their neck.

Inguinal Region

The area on a dog’s body around the genitalia.  Exposing the inguinal region is considered part of submissive, or appeasement behavior in dogs.

Inhibition

When a behavior decreases in frequency and/or severity.  This can refer to a specific behavior, or to all of a dog’s behavior being generally subdued.

For example, promoting bite inhibition is a key part of training a puppy.  A puppy learns to bite with less force and frequency when his owners or littermates stop playing with him when he bites.

Institute of Modern Dog Trainers

A UK-based organisation offering externally-verified accredited qualifications for dog trainers, encompassing both a theoretical and practical assessment of skills.  The IMDT also offers seminars and courses for members and maintains a list of accredited trainers in the UK and overseas.

Intermittent Reinforcement Schedule

When a trainer reinforces a cued behavior some, but not all, of the times the behavior is performed.  Also called a variable interval schedule.

Trainers often change from a continuous reinforcement schedule, where the dog gets a reward every time he performs the behavior, to an intermittent schedule when the dog has demonstrated that he has reliably learned the cue and is not at all confused about what it means.

International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants

A professional organization for animal behaviorists working with dogs, cats, horses and parrots.  Members have to demonstrate that they have spent at least 300 hours consulting with clients on issues of animal behavior (500 hours for full members), supply references and take a written test to demonstrate that they meet core standards of competency.

The IAABC maintains a list of behavior consultants in the United States.  Members can also avail themselves of continuing education, an annual conference, and professional networking opportunities.

International Association of Canine Professionals

The IACP is an organization that offers membership to all dog professionals, including dog trainers, groomers, boarding kennels, dog walkers, veterinarians, vet techs and boundary fence installers.

They offer continuing education, professional networking opportunities, as well as certification for dog trainers. Certification has three levels and requires a written test and an in-person or video evaluation of skills:

(1) Certified Dog Trainer (CDT) is the basic level of examination.  Applicants are eligible to take the exam if they have two years’ experience as a dog trainer.

(2) Pet Dog Training Instructor (PDTI) is the extended level of the CDT exam.  Applicants must have held CDT status for a year, and have had 250 hours of experience as a Head Trainer or equivalent within the last five years.

(3) Certified Dog Trainer – Advanced (CDTA) is the advanced level examination.  Applications must have been a professional dog trainer for five years and held CDT status for a year before they can take the exam.

Invisible Fence

An electronic system designed to keep a dog within a set of predefined boundaries without the use of a physical barrier. The dog wears a collar that delivers an electric shock if its warning sound is ignored.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

A gastrointestinal condition characterized by bouts of diarrhea and constipation, often caused by food intolerances and sometimes made worse by stress.  IBS in dogs is often found alongside general anxiety.