Academy FAQs

Our Online Classroom is a Facebook group where you can see lessons that we post, ask questions from the course for support and feedback from us and other owners and share success!  It’s also where we post updates about our Academy Group Class.

We have two groups.  One for the Foundation course and one for the Freedom Dog Course.

The Online Class is meant to be an interactive, supportive and fun group where you can be come and be successful with your dog(s)!

Our Academy Group Class is our group class where owners can come with their dog, practice the material they’ve learned around increased distractions, get more in person assistance and meet other owners!  The Academy Group Class is open to dogs 6 months and older.

Owners can attend the class after they have completed week 6 in either the Foundation or Freedom Dog Course and Classroom.  This is only open to those who sign up for the Academy in the Online Classroom.

For people in the Foundation course, they’ll get 2 free weeks in the Academy class and for those in the Freedom Dog course, they’ll have 10 free weeks.  Afterwards you can sign up for a subscription to continue coming.

Puppies between 8 weeks and 5 months can attend our Puppy group class after owners have completed week 2 in either the Foundation or Freedom Dog Course and Classroom in the Academy.

For example Mel is a dog who has a history of going berserk when the UPS man drops off a package.  By teaching Mel how to relax (lowering his threshold for barking) and that there are lots of other choices that can be rewarded (other than going berserk), Mel learns that when the UPS man drops off a package to just watch quietly or even ignore him on his own without us having to tell him what to do.

No, we’ll make recommendations on which pieces of training equipment we recommend and places you can purchase them from.  In our Dream Dog program, while your dog is in for board and train, we’ll send the training equipment we use home with your dog included in the program price.

No, while we use a lot of positive reinforcement when training dogs, we also use the other three quadrants of operant conditioning.  As soon as you withhold food from the dog to decrease a behavior (for example withhold the treat until the dog stops jumping on you) you’re using negative punishment.  We also have times when we use negative reinforcement and positive punishment.  

In behavior training negative and positive don’t mean good or bad, they mean add or subtract. In positive reinforcement, you adding something (for example food) to increase the chance that the dog will do a behavior again.  In negative reinforcement you remove something (for example leash pressure) to increase the chance that the dog will do something again. 

These can also be combined.  For example, a person can apply upward steady leash pressure, as soon as the dog sit, release the pressure, yes and give the dog a treat.  Now you’ll have two ways you can communicate a sit to the dog!

Yes!  First you’ll need to pick which course you want to do and sign up for the self study option from our Self Study Courses pages.  You can schedule your first private lesson to take place after you have completed week 2 in the course.

Our Private lessons are what we call reverse lessons.  This means that you have covered material in the course first and started working on it but want to get more one on one assistance.  Overall you’ll learn more and need less private lessons (thus saving money!) with our reverse lesson format.

The main difference is cost.  Students in the Academy are in our Online Classroom and Academy Group Class and so they receive a large amount of support before we work one on one and so need less assistance.

No.  There is no ecollar training the Foundation or Freedom Dog programs.  The only ecollar training is if you would like to learn about using the tool to help with off leash obedience or behavioral issues after your dog has a training background. This would be done in a separate course.  We do not use the ecollar to shut a dog down but rather open up their world by helping with their behavior.  We only recommend high quality ecollar such as the Mini or EZ Educators from Ecollar Technologies.

We have no veterinary requirements for any virtual or online services where we are not meeting in person.  We do recommend to at a minimum have your dog up to date on rabies when doing training with us in any format.

For in person services: In our on-going effort to provide you and your dog’s with the best care and service possible as well as provide a clean and healthy environment for all, we require ALL dogs that participate in any activity at our Freedom Dog Training & Boarding facility provide proof of the following veterinary records from a licensed veterinarian.

For puppies 5 months and younger

a) rabies vaccination no later than 16 weeks of age

b) age appropriate distemper/parvo combo shots

c) negative fecal within 30 days of the first appointment and then updated every six months thereafter

For dog 6 months and older:

a) rabies vaccination (1 or 3 years)

b) distemper/parvo combo (1yr, 3 yrs or a yearly titer)

c) negative fecal within 6 months of the first appointment and then updated every six months thereafter

If your dog tests positive for on their fecal, they need to be treated.  After treatment, a new fecal test will be needed to make sure the treatment has worked.  Some parasites require more than one round of treatment to get rid of them.

We don’t require the bordetella vaccine but Client is welcome to have their dog vaccinated with bordetella. Client understands that even if Client’s dog is vaccinated against kennel cough (bordetella) or not vaccinated, there is a chance that the owner’s dog can still contract kennel cough.

We appreciate your willingness to help us keep our facility as clean and safe as possible for the enjoyment of all.