FAQs

What is your method of training?

Amanda is a balanced, reward based trainer. What that means is we communicate to the dogs what behaviors are unacceptable, then reward the behaviors we want. Without telling them what you don’t want, you’ll never get that full clarity and understanding from them what the goal is. We’ll use food in the early stages of training with dogs as a great reward and motivator, but it is not what we want the training relationship based upon.  Your dog should listen to you–treat or not! Our training approach is relationship and reward based through inclusion in daily activities, gentle praise, and building a working relationship together.

What makes you different?

We train real world, family dogs! Unlike other training approaches that only focus on developing rehearsed behaviors, bribing with treats, or merely trying to manage the problem, we work to fundamentally change the dog’s state of mind. Once we address the dog’s state of mind, the possibilities are endless. By cultivating new habits, teaching the dog to make better choices, and training calmness instead of excitability, we are consistently successful with all different types of dogs. And of course this is all done in a normal home setting, not a busy kennel.

 Do you offer a guarantee?  

Every dog is different and comes with his own set of behaviors and way of thinking that will affect the way he learns. We guarantee your dog will have knowledge of the obedience commands and a new way of behaving. We also guarantee that we will be available to help you for the rest of your dog’s life. We have a curriculum that consists of our commands, manners training throughout the day, and respect for the commands as well as people. This will be transferred to you during private lessons. After they go home it is up to you to follow our directions, and some changes in your household may need to be made.

What is a typical day?

We begin every day with getting outside to potty, then going for a 30-60 min walk or off-leash playtime, which includes teaching them how to listen under distractions. Afterwards we’ll have breakfast, followed by duration work (place, down) to let their food settle. We train throughout the day with breaks in the afternoon where dogs are expected to be calm in their crates for “nap time”. In the evening we go on a long walk and train, then end the night with dinner and playtime before bed.

 Will my dog still be playful after training?

Yes! We want to help your dog be better, not break his or her spirit. Training is simply a way to learn how to communicate effectively with your dog. You will see that there must be a time for work and focus, but equally important is a time to let loose and have fun.

 Will there be homework when I bring my dog home?

Because we focus more on a whole new way of interacting with your dog and teaching them the appropriate behaviors, our “homework” is not strict, and will vary per dog and family. We find it more useful to incorporate these behaviors and obedience throughout your normal day and interactions with your dog, rather than brief windows of time going through obedience routines. Don’t worry, we’ll help you out and give you all the tools needed to keep you and your dog on the right path 🙂

How do e-collars work?

We use low-level, communication-style, modern e-collar training, which looks nothing like the e-collar training of the past. We find them to be the best tool for connecting, communicating, and creating a harmonious relationship with the least amount of physical stress to the dog and owner. Most tools tend to only mask or manage the behavior, while the e-collar allows us to actually break through and effortlessly communicate, creating a vastly different state of mind and a highly responsive dog. While e-collars are commonly misunderstood and feared, when used correctly they have been proven to be the most effective, most reliable, most humane, and most transformational training available today. For several examples of what our training looks like, take a look at our YouTube videos.

Do I need to bring my dog’s food for board and train?

Yes, you’ll need to provide enough of their regular food for the 2-3 weeks they’ll be with us. However we believe strongly that poor quality food affects dogs both physically and mentally, so we may recommend a diet change. We supply all training treats needed.

 What are your vaccination requirements?

We ask that your dog be healthy and up to date on the common vaccines of distemper, parvo, and rabies, or have titers showing their immunity levels. Because we are an in-home run business and not a large kennel, we don’t require (or recommend) the Bordetella “kennel cough” vaccine. There are no restrictions on intact dogs, we just ask that unspayed females are not currently in heat when boarding.

 May I visit my dog during their board and train?

We will determine if owner participation is appropriate or helpful to your individual dog. In many cases we find owner participation counterproductive to the rehabilitation and training process. Separation from their owner is part of what makes this work so well. The home environment and the owner can represent bad habits, so in order to truly make the change, it is best for your dog to focus on the work and then be reintroduced to you when he is in a much more confident, structured state of mind. However for other dogs, a lesson together with their owner can help start that new communication and relationship.

 How do we get started?

Give us a call or email! We can talk about your training choice, send you the appropriate forms, and get you scheduled as soon as possible. Remember our board and train programs book far in advance, so don’t hesitate to call now!

  What forms of payment do you accept?

As a small business, we greatly appreciate cash and checks for payment to avoid costly credit card processing fees. However we do accept major credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover. You can also get financing when you pay with your PayPal account. (Financing is provided upon approval by PayPal’s Bill Me Later. You can apply here.)