Virtual Training FAQ

Welcome to VIRTUAL training! You probably have lots of questions, like whether this can actually work… the answer is ABSOLUTELY. Have a look below!

General

But, seriously, you can train dogs… ONLINE?

Absolutely! Outside of weekend workshops, all of my continuing education is conducted through various virtual formats. This includes HANDS-ON skills training! I’ve found this format to be incredibly beneficial for me and my dogs.

Does it matter where I live?

Yes – due to insurance restrictions, we are accepting only students located in Canada.

What are the technology requirements?

  • You need a basic level of computer/internet literacy, including navigating a webpage, uploading videos, and use of a message board
  • Life Skills: Internet capacity that permits viewing and uploading of videos
  • Private Training: High speed internet that allows for video conferencing over ZOOM
  • A computer, phone or tablet that:
    • Has a microphone
    • Has a camera
    • Can connect to the internet
    • Some Private Training will require more than one device (phone/tablet/computer)
  • Method to hold up your phone/tablet (this can be as simple as an upside-down egg carton to support your phone, tape your phone to a paper towel holder, or a tripod/camera stand)

What Policy applies?

All regular policy applies. You can find Group Policy here and Private Policy here. Purchase and/or registration indicates acceptance of applicable policy.

All-Ages Life Skills Program

How does it work?

Using a virtual classroom called Google Classrooms, you will be have a weekly introduction to new exercises with demonstrations, verbal descriptions and written instructions.

Each exercise is broken down into easy-to-follow steps, and you will receive personalized feedback on your homework submissions.

  • Work at your own pace and on your own schedule!
  • Class starts on the 1st and 15th of each month, join any time!
  • Lessons are posted weekly and homework reviewed on week days
  • You have eight-week access to dynamic content and personal feedback
  • Download the Program Manual for reference after completing your program

Checkout the video below for a tour of your classroom!

How does the flexible schedule work?

You can join the program any time, and the first training module will be released biweekly. This means you will never wait more than two weeks to get started in class!

Will I see other people, and can others see me?

Your homework will be submitted privately to your instructor, and feedback will be returned privately. You also have the option to participate in Q&As and discussion with your classmates.

Will I learn the same things as in a regular group class?

Yes! the curriculum has been modified to cater to this virtual experience, and the class maintains the same manners and obedience exercises as in the in-person class. In fact, it’s designed to allow a fluid transition from in-person to virtual should another lockdown be mandated after in-person classes resume – or should in-person classes resume when you are part way through your virtual program.

What about distractions?

Did you know it’s actually more effective to teach a behaviour before adding distractions? This approach actually better caters to learning needs of both people and dogs, versus an in-person class.

The self-paced format means that you can post follow-up videos from the lessons and receive feedback on whatever aspect of the lesson you would like, including introduction of distractions.

What if I have questions about topics not included in the Life Skills Curriculum?

In order to provide the best training service, problems outside the scope of the group program will require a private consultation so your instructor is able to gather the information necessary for a complete response to your question. You can find information on the Private Session webpage.

How do I prep for my training sessions?

You can find all of this information on the Virtual Training Prep page.

What happens when the COVID-19 lockdown is over?

Local students with group-class-appropriate dogs (non-reactive) are welcome to transfer directly into the live in-person program, or may choose to remain in the virtual classroom. A schedule for in-person classes will be posted when reopening plans solidify.

Private Training

Which sessions are virtual?

Private training and behaviour consultations are currently running in both virtual and in-person formats, depending on the nature of the issue addressed in the session. Initial sessions will continue to take place in a virtual format, and follow-ups will be decided on a case-by-case basis. For example, resource guarding in the home may be addressed in a virtual format, and outdoor reactivity sessions may be addressed in-person. We cannot guarantee that a request to meet in-person can be granted. Due to health and safety implications, availability of in-person sessions is not based solely on client preference.

How does it work?

Using a video conferencing program called ZOOM, we will meet in our “virtual classroom” at the designated start time.

Just like an in person private behaviour consult, we will review your dog’s behaviour, your instructor will introduce and demonstrate exercises, and you will work with your dog on each skill. ZOOM allows you to receive personal feedback in real time, and have questions about each exercise answered on the spot!

For some training problems, you will need multiple devices to record your dog at two angles, or a helper to hold your camera. You may have additional technology requirements such as bluetooth headphones. Contact the office for details.

Can any behaviour problem be dealt with virtually?

Please provide the office with some details of your dog’s behaviour, and where you are seeing this occur, and we will decide whether a virtual consult is the best route forward. Contact the office here.

What do I need to do to prep for my session?

You can find that information on the Virtual Training Prep page, as well as the Behaviour Consultation page. You will also be sent information applicable to your situation.