Frequently Asked Questions -FAQ

q.

Do I really need a dog trainer?

A.

Many unwanted behaviors stem directly from our interactions with our pets.  If you asked me, "How do I get my dog to stop barking all day in the backyard?"and my answer involved changing YOUR behaviors, would you?  Your willingness to change YOUR behaviors will ultimately determine if you truly need a dog trainer.  

Dog training is a discipline. It involves commitment, practice and love for there to be change.  Many people believe that sending the dog away for training will correct the problem.  It will not. Dog training is not magic.  When I visit you, it will involve change and disciplined practice on your part.  

With that said, it doesn't mean that it won't be rewarding and fun! My job is to teach both of you how to achieve mutual love and respect in a way that your dog won't know he's being trained.  The bond that develops between pet and owner is very strong and gratifying for both of you.  It can be achieved.  

 

q.

What is your Training Philosophy?
 

A.

My personal experience has taught me NOT to sell a specific philosophy.  There are a million ways to achieve results if you combine common-sense with knowledge of the animal.  

Punitive trainers wait for dogs to make a mistake and positive trainers give rewards before they make a mistake.  Neither one of those work all the time.  Videos have the similar limitations. Some dog personalities are very soft and some are very bold and hard. Both have their challenges.  

 

My goal as a trainer is to bridge the gap between you and your dog.  I have worked within the limitations of most philosophies and choose to single out methods that would best benefit you personally.  My object is to find the right balance between your capabilities and your dog's personality.  I suppose many people would call me a "balanced trainer," but I like to incorporate and work flexibly.  

I focus on three basic principles.  

  • Cause and effect

  • Who owns the resources?

  • Association

Dog training is a science and if you don't keep up, you become dated fast.  You cannot keep training one way when the science says otherwise.  

q.

What Behavior Problems do you Address?
 

A.

  • Mouthing

  • House Soiling

  • Nipping

  • Unnecessary Barking

  • Biting

  • Demanding Attention

  • Bolting the Door

  • Jumping on Guests

  • Digging

  • Leash Pulling

  • Separation Anxiety

  • Crate Training

  • Chewing

  • Inappropriate Human Greetings (i.e. crotch sniffing)

  • Trail Manners

  • Aggression 

  • Whatever else you can throw at me!

Puppy enrichment.  Keep them busy creativley

q.

What do I need to bring to my first Session or Group Class?
 

A.

  • A mat or something with a rubber base that your dog can sit on.  As younger puppies get older we will introduce place cots.  If your dog is already an adult, please consider purchasing one to help with your training. 

  • Water and a water dish.  When the session is held in my backyard I will provide water, but when we meet at your place or elsewhere you will be responsible.  Training makes dogs very thirsty, don't be surprised if they seem to drink more than is typical.  Please plan ahead for yourself and for your dog!

  • Some means of taking "notes" if necessary.  Often a quick picture or video of the behavior can help tremendously to refresh you memory of the lessons taught.  

  • 6ft leash and gentle means of restraint such as a harness or collar that pup cannot escape from.  

q.

Should I wait until my Puppy has all of His shots to begin group class?  

A.

Puppies must have completed their FIRST series of vaccinations prior to attending training sessions.  We require a copy of your vaccination records, please bring them to your first session or email a copy to k9leadershiptraining@gmail.com.  We work in private yards and green spaces, never in public areas until our clients are completely vaccinated.  

That being said, it is vital that you being socialization training as soon as possible.  There is a window of opportunity when proper socialization comes more easily and you will miss that chance if you wait until your puppy is fully vaccinated.  Please consult your vet and take their advice into consideration, however if they recommend that you wait until the full series is complete, they may not be current on modern protocols.  For more information consult the American Veterinary Medical Association.  

 

q.

What about Dog Parks?

A.

We generally do not encourage the use of dog parks to teach your dog proper socialization.  

 

When you sign up with K9 Leadership Training you join a community of like-minded individuals who are attentive and aware of their dog's limitations and weaknesses.  With enough training and guidance we can create safer, more controlled opportunities for our dogs to socialize within that community.  We encourage our members to get together outside of the opportunities we offer and to practice the principles taught during training.  

 

q.

My puppy lives with an older dog/dogs.  Is puppy class even necessary?

A.

Proper socialization is much more than learning to associate appropriately with one type of personality. Even amongst dogs there is tremendous variety.  Some are soft personalities and others could be hard, bubbly, excitable, and focused, etc. personalities.  There is short period of time during which your puppy's brain is more elastic and and capable of accepting such personalities and differences.  During that short period of time we need to properly teach puppies that not all things are to be feared, such as greeting new dogs, walking on gravel, swimming.  

Puppies that live with older dogs also tend to pick up their habits, good and bad.  For example, your older dog may feel uncomfortable around certain types of people and may bark at them.  Your puppy may learn to react also, unless taught in a group setting that these things really are ok and could even be fun!  Puppy class will show you how to stretch your puppy without overwhelming them.  

q.

What is your Cancellation Policy?

 
 
 
 

A.

Once you have enrolled your dog into our program there is no refund.   However, I take every situation into consideration.  In the case of rehoming, or death, we can often roll the training on to another dog.  

A.

Workshops are limited to family members.  Due to limited working space we ask that you limit attendees as much as possible to make room for other participants.  

q.

If I cannot make it to a private Training appointment, what should I do?

A.

Text me and we will move your appointment to a more convenient time. We understand that life happens, and often it is unpredictable.  If possible, please allow a minimum of 48hrs advance notice so that we can set up appointments with other clients.  

Closeup of a Black Dog

q.

Who can attend workshops?