1. All payments must be made in advance.
2. For your own sake, please make sure you wear comfortable clothing:
Do not wear clothes that can get in your way, make sure your covering anything that can embarrass you.
NO sandals, high heels, ill-fitting shoes, clogs, or heavy boots. Wear comfortable, flat shoes with a rough sole and grip.
3. Do not feed your dog before bringing him to class. He should be fed at least 8 HOURS before the class begins. Pups can be fed ½ a feed 4 hours before class.
4. Please advise us when your dog is sick or injured and can’t come to class.
5. Spectators are always welcome: children MUST, however, remain quiet and under constant supervision while the dogs are working. Keep children away from strange dogs, and off the training field, at all times. Parents will be held responsible for all damages, which may be incurred to any property by their kids. This will also be the case if any friends or family of members cause damage to any property.
6. You must check in with your instructor, whether participating in class or just watching.
7. Keep your dog under control at all times. Aggressive dogs and unruly dogs will be barred from classes if their handlers do not put control work into practice as soon as they know how.
8. For at least the first three months the dog should only have one handler.
9. Exercise your dog before class to prevent accidents (messing on the field). Arrive at least 15 MINUTES before the time. If your dog does have an accident, you are expected to CLEAN IT UP IMMEDIATELY.
a. We reserve the right to disallow improper training equipment, or any handler who treats his dog in a cruel manner.
10. Keep a close watch on your female for signs of her "heat" or "season". DO NOT bring her to class during this period, but DO attend yourself to watch the lesson.
11. When your dog is in training with us and reaches a certain level of training you will be awarded with a certificate.
12. Please help to keep the premises clean. Poop scoop bags are available for removal.
We insist that your dog have ALL standard vaccinations at least two weeks before coming to class, and is free of internal (worms) and external (ticks & fleas) parasites when you start this course. Your dog's health is your responsibility and therefore every precaution should be taken by you to see that he has all necessary vaccinations up to date for his well-being, and the well-being of the other animals using our training grounds. Vaccination cards must be produced at the first class, and whenever requested to do so. Dip your dog regularly, at least every two to three weeks in summer and brush him daily.
If accidents do occur, use the equipment provided to clean up after your own dog. You should avoid this task by feeding AFTER class. Feeding before class increases the chances that you will have to clean up. This also makes your dog sluggish and tired, therefore unwilling or unable to learn his lesson.
We find that a step in harness FITTED to your dog, and a canvas, nylon, or leather training lead of at least 1.4m is most suitable. The harness will probably have to be replaced as the dog grows, but using the harness that "he will grow into" serves no real purpose in the beginning and is next to useless in its effectiveness. Please dress comfortably and casually. Clothes poorly chosen will be a hindrance to your dog. Shoes should provide traction, not distraction.
DON'T USE YOUR FEET OR A THREAT FROM YOUR SHOE TO CORRECT
YOUR DOG! This will frighten and confuse him. Please bring enough treats to train your dog with, treats should not be bigger than the end of a pencil. If you have bigger treats please make sure it can break smaller.
TRAINING AT HOME
Work with your dog every day! One period of ten minutes is ideal. If you cannot follow a
specific schedule, ANY TIME FOR ANY PERIOD WILL DO, AS LONG AS THE DOG IS MADE TO DO SOMETHING EACH NATURAL TRAINING DAY!! Use the same
commands at home as you use at school. If you have doubts about your procedure, end your lesson with an exercise you are sure of and the dog can do well, AND CONTACT US FOR HELP. Always end your sessions with a good feeling between you and your dog about obedience training. Let him know that he is doing the right thing. Put all the exercises that you learn at school, into practice at home.
Don't confuse your dog by scolding him today for something that he can get away with tomorrow. Set down the rules and stick to them, i.e. ON or OFF the furniture. Don't give him an old shoe to play with if you don't intend to let him have the good ones too! OFF is the command to get "off": (off you, off the bed, off the furniture, etc.) But DOWN is the obedience command to "lie down"... NOW! Don't confuse Rover by telling him to "sit down", or to "get down", when you really mean, "sit until I say otherwise" or "get off of the chair." Be sure everyone in the household uses the same commands and actions that you are using in class. This attention to commands on your part eliminates confusion while enforcing the lesson for your dog.
When you feel the need to correct your dog, be sure to do it IMMEDIATELY!!! If You cannot correct WHILE HE IS IN THE PROCESS of misbehaving or within 5 seconds of the action, YOUR CORRECTION WILL BE MEANINGLESS!!!
A) Rover is left alone. In the room with him is a slipper that he chews, (or a hole in the yard, or a mess on the floor, etc.)
B) After some time you enter the room and see the dog, then you see the slipper, (or hole, mess, etc.), so you proceed to punish him (if you can catch him) for doing the foul while you were gone.
THIS IS A HUMAN REACTION AND TO YOU IT MAKES SENSE TO REACT THIS WAY BECAUSE YOU ARE HUMAN AND YOU CAN REASON. You realize that the dog did something wrong while you were gone, and therefore he must be punished. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE DOG? HE CANNOT REASON, AND HE DIDN'T PLAN TO DO IT:
A) Being bored and left alone, he sees an object to chew on, and amuses himself for the time being.
B) After chewing, (or digging, etc.) he decides to lie down until something better comes along: and YOU DO!
C) Rover gets ready to greet you. Meanwhile, he has totally forgotten about his deed.
D) Now, for coming to you happily, Rover is being screamed at and possibly hit with both your hands and the slipper, (or gets his nose pushed into the hole or mess) for no apparent reason at all!
From now on Rover knows better than to come running to you the next time you come home, because he doesn't know what to expect. Sometimes you come home happy and sometimes you don't. He looks "guilty" until you make up your mind. Your first appearance means correction.
Try to understand that you have not corrected the dog for the deed, but for coming to you. The next time he is bored and causes damage, you will react the same way and so
will he, until you convince him that he will be punished if he comes to you. And God help the dog that does not come to his owner to be punished!!!
THE BEST SOLUTIONS TO PROBLEMS THAT OCCUR WHEN YOU ARE
NOT AROUND IS THE ELIMINATION OF THE PROBLEM, NOT THE DOG.
Be fair to him at the least.
When confronting other dogs, your dog could either show submission or aggression, so will the other dog. WATCH OUT! Don't let things get out of hand. Do not react as if there is something to be afraid of, or Rover will tune in right away, and start something that either he might not be able to finish, or you might not be able to pay for! Don't force your dog on another dog to satisfy your ego. It could backfire when you are not in total control, with disastrous results!
WATCH YOUR DOG ALL THE TIME, AND DO NOT TAKE HIM OFF LEAD UNTIL YOU ARE TOLD TO DO SO! INSTRUCTORS WILL NOT TOLERATE DOGS THAT ARE OFF LEAD AT ANY TIME, EXCEPT UNDER COMMANDS AND IN CLASS!!!
If your dog gets into a confrontation with another, you will have to deal with YOUR INSTRUCTOR, who is going to "get into it" with you for letting the incident occur. (This also applies if a dog should bite a person.) Advise your instructor when you join if either of these applies to your dog. Remember, you are responsible for any damage caused by you or your dog.
FROM OUR POINT OF VIEW
For those of you who have trained before, or know anything about obedience training, let us assure you that you will find our methods and overall training program different from those you may be familiar with. We care about your dog, and we give him every chance to learn. We try to be patient and understanding with you both. However, if there is a need to be rough on either of you, it is because we DO care, and don't want your pet to end up at the S.P.C.A. (or worse) because you won't make him behave.
You must be consistent and firm. We use teaching methods; first we teach you, and then you teach your dog. When he's right, LET HIM KNOW IT WITH PRAISE! When he makes a mistake, let him realize that, too.... IMMEDIATELY!
Biting is NOT cute! Your dog is allowed to use his mouth for eating and retrieving, and nothing else. And DON'T put up with it at home, either. If he tries it here, he will be corrected. Puppy play biting is NOT cute... that puppy will grow, and so will his teeth!
ABILITY TO LEARN
We find that the handler is usually more difficult to train than the dog, for two reasons:
firstly, you are trying to pay attention to both the instructor and the dog at the same time, making concentration difficult, whereas at home you and your dog are working free of disturbance and on a one to one basis. In order that you fully understand each exercise, we suggest that you stand still while each lesson is being demonstrated and explained, and THEN execute it with your dog while the instructor watches.
You will find that you won't get anywhere listening with one ear and fighting the dog at the same time. Train where there are no distractions.
You all know your dogs... at home. But sometimes a class full of rowdy, strange dogs and people will bring out the beast in him (and you.) Such a situation will either make him retreat into a corner or hide safely behind you. If so, stand still and coax him along. Try to reassure him that things will be OK. Don't nag, force or scold him for being afraid of something he doesn't understand.
WHATEVER YOU DO, please don't tell other people after 3 months of training that WE didn't teach your dog anything. Remember, we are teaching YOU... You are supposed to teach your own dog.
Remember that you are only going to get out of this course what you put into it. Your dog will do what you have trained him to do, and get away with what you continue to allow. Although we can show you how to train your dog - what you do with that knowledge is up to you! Make up your mind that you ARE going to train your dog, and THEN DO IT! Don't quit because Rover doesn't like YOU to bark the orders for a change!
TRAIN WITH CONSISTENCY BE QUICK WITH CORRECTIONS; BUT EVEN FASTER WITH YOUR
PRAISE. SHOW HIM YOU CARE!!
CHILDREN ON THE PREMISES
Children who are well mannered and who are respectful of other people's property, are welcome anywhere. That applies to "dog school" too. However, please remember that all the dogs that come here are not trained, and therefore NOT 100% RELIABLE. Keep children under supervision and see that they are not on the training field, and that they are kept away from strange dogs AT ALL TIMES!! PLEASE KEEP IN MIND THAT PARENTS WILL BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL DAMAGES CAUSED BY THEIR CHILDREN.
Please read all the documentation handed out, and feel free to ask questions. Homework sheets will be handed out, explaining the exercises and tips on handling. Refer to them!! Your "stupid question" is probably on the tongue of everyone else in the class, and they are just as afraid of asking as you are. Do everybody a favour, and ask. If it is important to you, then it is important to us. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A STUPID QUESTION!
This means a verbal and physical command at the same time while learning. When giving a verbal command, you must physically guide the dog into the position you want him to be in. To expect the dog to sit, for instance, without guiding him into the sit position, is unfair to the animal until he has been told and guided for at least the first ten times, without exception. Don't give up without a fair trial period for us, as well as the dog. Some dogs, as well as some people, may take longer to adjust. Bad habits have been months in the making, and you are trying to overcome them in 3 months.
Our corrections in most cases are standard, but many are fitted to the individual and his dog... don't be a copycat. Use only the corrections meant for your dog.
If, for any reason, you cannot complete the course, please let us know. If it is a question of making up the work or changing classes to a later date, we can work something out. Other reasons for not completing a class may include illness, job changes, conflicting interests, etc. If you are unhappy with us for any reason and decide not to finish the course, please let us know that, in order that we may help you, and anybody else who might feel the same way.
There comes a time when even the best working dog seems to forget all that he has learned, or takes a stubborn streak and refuses to budge. THIS IS NOT UNUSUAL. Take the time to understand and restrain for a couple of days, and it will come back to him and we will all live through it.
Don't compare yourself and your dog to anyone else in the class. You don't have to "train to please us", either. YOU decide if he will perform all the exercises, if he will listen the first time, if he completes the course, and if you or he will be in control.
If your dog has a special problem, or seems to develop one along the way, try to find out why... what happened? Is it natural for this breed to act this way? Is the problem inherited, such as extreme shyness, aggressiveness, poor health, fear, etc. was the problem caused by persons who owned him before you (mistreatment, isolation, bad habits, etc.?) There is a chance, too, that you have unknowingly caused your dog's problem. Whatever it is, and the cause, we will work together to understand the problem, and try to solve it. Please ask or tell us about it, otherwise we will never be able to assist.
WHAT YOU MUST WORK ON AT HOME:
1) Make sure you are ALWAYS walking on the right side of your dog. Do whatever acrobatics you have to, to keep him on your left side.
2) Be sure the training harness is put on correctly.
3) Change your dog's feeding habits, if necessary, so he can relieve himself before coming to class, or don't feed him until you would be getting home from class.
4) Don't use a chain lead for training. Start with the right kind of equipment. ‘’