What We Offer

Group Classes

PROOF OF VACCINATIONS REQUIRED AT FIRST MEETING

NEW Training Walks

Training Walks incorporate both mental and physical exercise for your dog. The 30 – 45 minute, 3 times a week group walk gets you and your dog moving while also learning and reinforcing basic commands like “stay”, “heel” and “leave it”. Cost for Training Walks is $25 per dog per walk, and it is offered as a “drop in” class. You can attend, or not attend, based on your need and time.  Locations will be determined as people sign up. The group will be cancelled if the minimum number of participants is not met. Unfortunately, no discount is applicable.  If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Good Dogma.

Puppy Elementary (First class is orientation – humans only, no dogs)

This 90-minute class is targeted for dogs 4 months and older with little or no prior training. The class combines 3 phases of learning. The first is simple command learning — sit, stay, come, down, etc. Using games and clickers (optional),  this portion of class also includes focus and impulse control activities. The second phase involves advancing your dog’s socialization skills with dogs, strangers and new environments. The third phase incorporates discussion and solutions regarding universal puppy/dog behaviors such as nipping, jumping and barking. In addition to the training exercises and activities, we will guide you through a comprehensive puppy massage.

The class may also address behavior issues you may be experiencing at home. More serious behavior problems, such as aggression (with people or dogs) or fearfulness will not be discussed at length in class. These issues may call for more extensive work, likely requiring a home visit.  Click Here For Current Schedule

Dogma High

Dogma High is open to any dog over 6 months with foundational knowledge of basic commands: sit, stay, come, down. The class will review these commands and then take them to the next level employing distractions and increased duration to strengthen your dog’s response. This class also teaches impulse control such as “leave it”  and “wait”.  Clickers are optional. Class activities and exercises incorporate “figure 8” loose leash walking, calming ovals,  games and tricks. A fun-filled, action-packed challenge for both you and your dog. Click Here For Current Schedule

Dogma High/CGC

Our most advanced class, designed to reinforce and add challenge to the basic commands your dog has mastered. We’ll take the loose leash heel to the next step, working off leash and incorporating turns, halts, speed variations and distractions. The class will practice distance commands, utilize hand signals, and begin the phasing out of lures and treats. This class includes review and practice of the 10 “tests” for AKC Canine Good Citizenship certification. An opportunity to take the test at the last class meeting can be arranged with prior notice to the instructor. Click Here For Current Schedule.

Reactive Rover

Does your dog lunge, growl, or bark at other dogs when out for a walk? This 45 minute workshop will address on-leash “reactive” behavior and how to manage it. While frightening and unpleasant, this behavior more often indicates excitement or fear more than aggression. Often it can be “the other end of the leash” that feeds the behavior and inadvertently reinforces it. This class will teach you how to anticipate a reactive burst and provide calm alternative responses in order to redirect and manage the behavior.  Basic commands are also incorporated into the process. This outdoor workshop is limited to five dogs per session. The cost is $25.  There are no discounts applicable. Click Here For Current Schedule 

Pet Therapy Team Training and Assessment

To obtain certification as a pet therapy team, you and your dog will need to master specific skills. This 4 week class, for dogs over 1 year of age, will cover commands and behaviors required to achieve certification from a Pet Therapy evaluator. Basic commands will be reviewed, reinforced, and tested, including loose leash walking and focus. There are no “formal” prerequisites for this class. However, your dog should have solid basic obedience skills; this class does not teach basic commands (e.g. sit, stay, come, etc.). Your dog should be well socialized and comfortable around people of all ages, sizes and colors. Come, stay, and heel commands will have several added distractions, including movement, toys, food, sounds, and hospital equipment. Impulse control behavior will involve “Leave it” and the Toy/Food “Gauntlet.” We will also utilize clicker training to work on shaping behaviors such as “Touch.” This class will address desensitizing your dog so that it is comfortable being handled both by you and strangers. Exercises will include a complete body exam including petting, hugging, tugging, and changes in vocal inflection.

Passing the Canine Good Citizenship (CGC) test is not required but strongly recommended. You can find the list of tests at www.AKC.org by typing in Canine Good Citizenship test. Good Dogma can provide CGC testing at any time. You do not need to take a class to take the test. Click Here For Current Schedule

3 Hours That Can Change Your Life! Private Instruction

     Private Instruction is extremely beneficial for dogs (and owners) with behavior issues, or if you are unable to join a group class. Private instruction allows us to focus on whatever you feel needs to be addressed and resolved;  jumping, leash or doorbell reactivity, or just basic manners, you set the agenda.  The first meeting involves an evaluation/discussion of the family/canine dynamics, an assessment of behaviors, then making a plan for you to implement.  Good Dogma helps you understand  how human behavior affects the behavior of the dog. The first session will leave you with new knowledge and tools to incorporate into your training homework.  

     In order to maintain consistency and promote success, private instruction requires a commitment of 3 training sessions.  The 3  sessions must take place within a 5 week period in order to avoid an additional cost. Each meeting will be 60 minutes. The base charge is $240. Depending on your location, it may be higher. Payment in full is due at the conclusion of the first meeting, and there are no refunds.

Consultations/Assessments :  A single 60 minute in home consultation is  available for certain behavior issues. The base charge is $90. Depending on your location, it may be higher. Please contact Good Dogma for this option.

Seminars & Workshops
Brief, one-day sessions on important topics for all dog owners and prospective owners. Seminars (humans only) and workshops (bring your furry one) vary in price, and are held at various locations. Please check the website calendar for any upcoming events.
Communication Skills
It cannot be emphasized enough that understanding how your dog thinks and learning to communicate using canine language is critical to getting the response or behavior you desire. It is Good Dogma’s mission to educate people on how to use both their body and voice in unison to reinforce correct responses/behavior and extinguish inappropriate responses/behavior.
Behavior Modification
Good Dogma can help you eliminate, manage or change unwanted canine behaviors. Instead of telling the dog what you don’t want it to do, teach alternative behaviors that will earn the dog praise. Good Dogma uses a tool bag of methods including, positive reinforcement, sound aversion, toys, and treats to change problem behaviors. We do not believe in using punishment as a tool to change behavior.
Basic Clicker Training
A clicker is a small hand held tool used to reinforce good behavior. It is always followed by a treat. This routine is called Classic conditioning, where the stimulus (clicker) is followed by reward (food) — think Pavlov and his dogs. At the point, when the dog’s brain has been wired, or conditioned, to the new behavior, the clicker and treats are eliminated.  Clicker training is an effective tool, but takes some coordination and timing practice to get used to.
Positive Reinforcement
Good Dogma relies on the use of a variety of positive reinforcement training techniques to promote the continuation of desired behaviors. When your dog associates good rewards with a behavior, they are more likely to repeat those behaviors.
AKC CGC Evaluations
Good Dogma is certified by the AKC to provide Canine Good Citizenship (CGC) certification. In addition to the immediate benefits of having a well-mannered dog, CGC certification can be a first step to having your dog become a therapy or service dog. This means your dog can visit hospitals and convalescent or retirement homes,  and be welcome at some hotels. There are 10 exercises the dog must pass to gain certification. For more information on the CGC visit the AKC website at AKC.org. Good Dogma is available for CGC consultation, review, and testing throughout the year.
Therapy Dog Evaluation
pet-evaluation-badge

Discounts:

Senior discount: (human) clients over 55 are eligible for a $10 discount on classes or private instruction.

Gift Certificates:

Good Dogma offers gift certificates for any of the services we provide.