At least once per day I receive an email asking if we offer a board and train service. I get where the question comes from. How great does it sound to be able to drop your dog off while you go on vacation and come back to an obedient canine?
Not All Board And Trains Are Created Equal I am going to cut to the chase. There are some awesome options out there for Board and Train, but you really have to do your research. A lot of trainers that offer this service use different types of collars that cause pain or discomfort and use them to correct your dog for doing an unwanted behavior. For example, stay on this bed and if you get off, you’ll get shocked until you get back on. Talk about bringing the game “the floor is lava to real life.”
A lot of trainers that offer this service use different types of collars that cause pain or discomfort and use them to correct your dog for doing an unwanted behavior.
My mentor, Jean Donaldson’s recommendation is to ask the trainer: 1. What happens when my dog does the correct behavior? 2. What happens when my dog does the incorrect behavior? 3. Are there any less invasive alternatives to what you propose? She goes on to say that if you cannot get clear, concrete answers or if you are at all uncomfortable with the answers, keep shopping. Board and train doesn’t have to be all based upon corrections. It can actually be a place where dogs can learn all the behaviors in incremental steps taught using food rewards and other environmental rewards. Once your dog has learned these behaviors, the next step is teaching you how to get the behaviors to happen.
What are my answers to those 3 questions? 1. Your dog will receive something he enjoys. Most likely it will be food. 2. Your dog will have something taken away. If he was working for food, his incorrect response does not earn him the food. Or if your dog jumps on a person, he will not get access to that person for 30 or so seconds. 3. Not that I am aware of. I set the dogs up for success by breaking everything down into achievable steps. I also do not do anything that hurts or scares dogs. If you’re considering board and train, do your research. Some dog trainers out there will say or do anything to get your business. As for us, at this time we do not offer it. We're able to help though 1-1 in your home, remotely using zoom or with our self paced digital courses.