As we began to develop our training programs at Playful Pups, we did a deep dive into the ever-changing needs of the clients we see every day. Every dog is different, and creating a place for each dog where they can feel safe, learn, and thrive became an integral part of our discussions.
Why Should Your Dog Participate in our A to Z Training Program?
This program was designed for the dogs that need that little extra time and training before joining a daycare group, time to develop while waiting to be altered, needing self-control training, building confidence or just a refresher on basic skills and manners work. It also holds huge benefit for the busy pet owner that can’t find time to do a class or have a private trainer to their home. We get it…LIFE happens!
What is A to Z?
The program is built on two levels of skill development. Mind Your Manners is our beginning foundational skills program for dogs who need to learn basic skills like sit, down, stay, leave it, etc. These skills are the building blocks of and foundation to good behavior and doggie manners. Instilling a strong understanding of each command without a lot of distractions sets your dog up for success. With one-on-one coaching from our trainers, we teach not only the verbal cue (the command itself) but also a non-verbal cue (hand signal) to reinforce what we are asking of the dog. This gives the owner several ways to work the command with the dog while working in or out of the home.
Our Top Dog program is next level training where we work with the dog to generalize (recognize and execute) their learned skills and manners in a variety of different situations and distractions. We assess all our Top Dog students when they begin on their knowledge of basic skills and rate their performance on a 1-4 scale, with 1 being the best. If we find there is a skill they need to work on (assessed at a 2-3 level), we will add it into the curriculum and help the dog sharpen that skill. Top Dog students will be taught advanced behavior skills, challenged with self-control exercises, asked to problem solve by reaching for the right skills and put in a distraction filled atmosphere on a daily basis.
The goal of both programs is to graduate the dog from the 4-week school with confidence, useful life skills and proper manners.
Communication with the pet owner is very important to us at Playful Pups A to Z Day Training. At the end of each week a report card will be sent home summarizing the dogs’ progress through their time here with us. We also send home an instructional video of the dog working with our trainers for owners to review and use as a guide to instruct their dog at home and to also see the progress their dog is making with us.
Written by Maria Stouffer, CPDT
Training Director at Playful Pups Retreat and Owner of Full Potential Dog Training and Training