As much as I like to portray a gruff personality, the truth is I can’t say no, especially when it comes to animals. Opening Kritter Keepers Club is a dream come true for me because it will allow me to say, “Yes!” more.
I’m saying yes to board and trains where I can exclusively work with a dog 5-7 times during the day at their lessons. Board and trains are great for learning basic obedience, housetraining, puppy basics but I don’t feel like they are good for extensive behavior modifications for aggressive or fearful dogs.
Lately, those are the clients that want a board and train. Depending on the dog’s triggers, being in a strange environment can send him over the edge. When a dog shuts down there is not a whole lot of learning going on and what can happen is the opposite of what trainer and owner really want — now the dog’s fears are associated with a facility or the trainer or the method of training. Then there’s what happens when the dog gets home…
We are always learning more and more about how our animals learn and retain information which is a great boon for the dog training world. Misconceptions about fear-based or aversive training can be argued against using data from studies rather than emotions. So what we do know is that consistency is key so when a dog returns home from a board and train it is essential that the humans are trained as well as the dog is!
Everyone should be using the same verbal cues, same visual cues. A dog’s humans should practice these newly gained behaviors all over the house. And don’t forget the rewards! If you want to get a dog to continue to do these behaviors rewards are a must!
At Kritter Keepers Club, we will offer board and trains in our dog-sports oriented facility. To help facilitate the transition to the family environment, we will have different Kritter Keepers working with your dog and we will proof each behavior.
Board and trains are not inexpensive so before you sign up, make sure you understand what you are getting. You should not only understand how much one-on-one training your dog is getting but how much time he’ll be alone, how much time will be dedicated to teaching the humans and and how long you have to follow up with the trainer if issues occur. Your board and train trainer should be able to provide you with a schedule of what your dog is learning and that should coordinate with the skills you are trying to build with your pup.
Make sure you get all the info you need and make the best decision you can!