Syllabus for the 12 Training School (updated)

Obedience Training School Syllabus:

THIS IS 12 WEEKS OF 2 DAYS A WEEK DAYCARE/School FOR PLF to get the dog started on learning its cue words using the other trained PACK dogs that reside at PLF. Cost is $53.40 (includes bakery) for the week + $49.99 for the required training package for everything your dog will need for the 12 week class: Book, clicker, 2 forms of training gear, etc (you provide the treats at home), to be paid on the first day. As one graduates we will then have openings to enroll another in their time slots. If the days available don’t work, we will put you on the waiting list for the ones that will (examples: Mon/Thurs or Wed/Fri). A 48 hr notice is required to cancel/reschedule or that days charge is added to your account.   


PLF is here and committed to your dog, if you think you are going to not see this thru, sign the dog up for Boot Camp.

Week 1: Introduction and Play Time. Dog learns Social greeting skills of being in a Pack, proper ritual, dog door use and migration instinct, Pack Walk formation and training with PLF staff, and what a boundary is. PLF will send home Cesar Milan’s book “Be the Pack Leader” with assigned reading chapters (if you don’t want to read the whole book). Please have this completed by the beginning of week 3.

Week 2: Cover the basics of Pack Walk with Pack Leader (owner). Start working on the Come command with leash and treats. (Purchase a Show Lead  now from Pet Supplies Plus labeled "Collar and leash in one" or Amazon (British style) for next week or Prong Collar from Pet Supplies Plus or Petsmart. We will tell you which one you need depending on your dog's need.) By end of week 2 the owner is to practice this and get the dog responding after PLF has trained the two days, so the animal will start responding in all locations asked and with its pet parent--and not just PLF. Pick up a clicker while you are at the store, if you don’t already have one. Return the book by end of the 2nd day of week 2 to receive a $5 credit.

Week 3: PLF will introduce the clicker and treats (we provide the treats for this here, you will have to get some for at home. We will tell you what kind to get to get the dog to work for you) and begin SIT/ STAY/Come Command work ON leash. Pack Walk begins at home ON ALL DAYS when the dog is not at PLF. A clicker can be purchased from any pet store, we get ours from Pet Supplies Plus for our Boot Camp guests. (see handout in email)

Week 4: Quiz on Clicker work, Sit/Stay/Come Command and Pack Walk for the Dog with the owner as the handler so we can assess where work needs to be done to prepare for the final exam in 4 weeks. PLF will test the dog and its understanding of the word come and action associated to it--the dog should be doing it 90% perfect now. (A dog is an animal, and will never be 100%. 90% is perfect score. To measure at home, Do 5 practice of the cue command word. The dog is allowed to not respond correctly 1 of those 5 times. If you are missing more than 1x, you are not practicing enough at home OR we need to add a correction to the training.)

Week 5: Practice Week in prep for test. PLF will teach the dog a game to work practice commands with. Working for 90% perfect and walking in Pack Walk formation correctly. Will send owner home with the games rules to practice by end of week 5. (See hand out in email)

Week 6: PLF will teach the dog the Down Command. Address any questions after practicing the Pack Leadership rules at home. Any new behaviors starting? By end of week 6, owner will practice down command with dog so that it does it anywhere asked for anyone.

Week 7: Practice: Pack Walk, come, sit, stay, Down when the dog is not at PLF. We will be testing the dog to help you tweak in prep for the upcoming test.

Week 8: QUIZ 2 (—at the trainer’s discretion) Be ready to PROVE you have been practicing with your dog! Looking for good headway on Pack Walk, come, sit, stay, down. This is done WITH THE OWNER handling the dog, NOT PLF. Begin NOW to get your dog following your hand signals and NO TREATS with what they have learned up till this point!

Week 9: Keep practicing all of the above, and now start with the "Watch Me" command. PLF will get the dog doing it, and by end of the week, show the owner how to do it and practice to start week 10. Why is this useful? It gets your dog's attention ON YOU to then listen to your next words. Changes a thought they are focused on to stop and look at you. If you dog is NOT looking to your for direction, it does not see you as its Pack Leader.

Week 10: PLF will test to see how the dog is responding to the Watch ME and ALL the above commands. We want to see that you are maintaining your dog at home! For most dogs, this is also a week that PLF will be working on confidence building in the Pack, so keep doing your part while we work behind the scenes to finish up Socialization and Pack Confidence building. Begin the Weaning process of getting your dog off whatever training tools you are still using: food, prong collar, clicker, etc. (see handout in email)

Week 11: Keep practicing the above and PLF will add "Leave it." This is handy for anything on the road while out walking that you don't want the dog to eat, or maybe if they are looking at another dog in a dominant way, you can say Leave it, and they will walk away (PLF uses this frequently.) See the hand out on how to teach Leave it. PLF will have the dog doing it by end of week 11 and send owner home to practice. Take home Written Exam. 50% of the grade.

A walk thru Pre-Test will be done with you during week 11 to make sure there are no surprises for next week!

Week 12: Demonstrate Leave it and lets talk about any problems you’re having or behaviors that have popped up. Take your dog hiking ON LEASH and challenge them and yourself to keep the dog in a full heal for 2 miles. Norris Dam has a nice flat trail or you can always do the Iams Nature hike (be READY for small critters to run out!) Exercise their mind!

Week 13: Test and Graduation on: Come, Down, Sit, Stay (Wait), Pack Walk, Leave it, and Watch Me.  All of this must be performed with no food and no training devices. Only hand signals and regular collar/leash or show leads allowed. This test is ON leash from a 6ft distance.

Graduation! Certificate issued by PLF. Now it is up to you to continue practicing! Remember: "Don't use it, you loose it" applies to the dog as well! Now work on this for the next 3-4 months following the maintenance, and come back for daycare/boarding as you need us. Sign up for our 4 week class to begin OFF-LEASH work once your dog knows your commands so well, there is no hesitation in hearing and following you. HINT: We will be looking for your dog to be “checking in” with you on the pre-entry exam.

Side Note:


Well, it's about the brain. Who old is it? How much impulse control does the dog have? Bad habits? High drives?

The older a dog gets, the more effort the brain needs to be shaped. A puppy, though it has the attention span of a Goldfish, is easy to focus with food and is eager to please it's human. An adult brain, used to care about all that, but now a squirrel is funner than you are and the dog's focus is now not on pleasing you.

So back to the main question: the difference. In Training School, we can Socialize, manage Energy need, and teach the eager to learn pup something new easily. Boot Camp requires more focus of discipline--sometimes shaping the animal every 2 secs. Literally staying so consistent the dog can't go back into its old behaviors. Let face it, what human has this kind of time?