Frequently Asked Questions
Updated statement at Monday 13 July 2020
Unleashed Pawtential has been carefully planning how we can safely re-establish operations at our Training Centre in line with government guidelines.
We will be implementing a phased plan starting in mid-July 2020, which we will roll out over the next few months.
The safety and welfare of our students, and visitors remains our top priority at all times.
- We will limit numbers of students to ensure social distancing is maintained.
- We have increased our cleaning regime.
- Behaviour consultations in owners homes have been suspended until further notice.
- We will ensure that all of our protocols are in line with current government advice.
Who can come to the lessons?
Anyone in a single household may attend class. If you are bringing children, please ensure that they will not wander away from your designated training area.
Are group classes safe?
Yes. The training centre is a 1 acre field and is outdoors, so there is tons of space for everybody! You can have as much space as you would like.
Will puppies be socialising and playing?
Given the current pandemic we will not be allowing puppies to play or greet. We prefer to teach puppies and dogs to focus and play with their owners anyway!
Do I need to wear a mask/gloves/PPE?
As we will be training outside, there is no current government guidance which says you need to wear PPE outdoors. However, if you would like to wear a mask or any other PPE item, you can do so as it will not interfere with training.
Who can come to the lessons?
All members of the family are encouraged to come to class, especially those who are involved in the day to day care and training of the dog. Children under 5 are welcome but should be accompanied by a second adult to be sure that both children and dog are well supervised.
What should I bring to class?
Please bring a selection of your dogs favourite treats, this could be chicken, ham, hotdogs, cheese or anything else that your dog loves, soft and smelly make the best treats! As well as a portion of his regular kibble and plenty of enthusiasm and optimism!
What training methods are used?
We only use positive reinforcement to train dogs. Our training ethos is to use reward based methods supported by the most recent scientific research.
We will never use methods which may intimidate your dog.
What will I learn?
We aim to make our classes super fun, and easy to learn. We have found that most owners give up on training their dog because it is boring and repetitive. Therefore we have structured our classes to be centred around a variety of games that only need to be played for 2-3 minutes per day! How cool is that? Our life skills classes teach you how to get a calm, focused, and confident dog, as well as teaching basic lifeskills.
What happens when I arrive?
When you arrive we ask you to keep your distance from the other dogs arriving or leaving the class. This is because not all dogs are comfortable meeting others while on leash.
Each dog will have their own training space with a mat or raised bed for them to rest on in between exercises.
How many dogs will be in the class?
We limit our classes to a maximum of 6 dogs, this is so we can give each dog as much attention and assistance as possible. They will be the same 6 dogs every week if you are booked onto one of our courses.
What if I miss a class?
If you are going to miss a class, please let us know and we can send you the training notes via email for you to catch up for the next week. We are not able to offer replacement classes or refunds at this time.
What happens when the course ends?
On successful completion of the course you will receive a certificate and rosette, as well as you and your dogs photo featured on our facebook page!
We hope that you will stick with us and take your training to the next level with our intermediate and advanced courses.
Can I contact the instructor between classes?
Absolutely! You can contact us between classes if you have any questions about the previous weeks training or need any additional support. The best way to contact us about training questions is via email so that we can give you a detailed answer.
If you need in depth behaviour support, the instructor may recommend a 1-2-1 session to provide a detailed plan of action for your dog.
My dog has a behaviour problem, are classes suitable?
Our training classes are designed to teach your dog essential skills for life. Classes include teaching calmness in the home, focus, loose lead walking, and recall. If there is a specific issue that you wish to address, please contact us prior to booking a class to check if it will be suitable for your dogs needs.
Not all dogs are suited to a class environment, for those dogs we would recommend a 1-2-1 session before class to check suitability and address issues before joining us in a class environment.
My dog is in heat or sick, can I still attend?
If your dog is sick, has been in contact with other dogs with contagious diseases, or is in heat, please do not bring your dog to class. If you are unsure whether you should bring your dog please contact us before class.
Handlers are still very welcome to join us.
Do I need to practice at home?
Yes! Yes! Yes! For the best results we advise that you practice EVERYWHERE! This means in the house, at the park, the beach, the pub etc. Everywhere is a learning opportunity for your dog. That is why we love our 3 minute games which are easy to set up, and fun to practice!
Does my dog need to be vaccinated?
Yes. For the safety of your dog and others, all dogs who join us must be vaccinated. Your vet will advise you when it is safe for your puppy to begin to socialise and join our class.
Why do behaviour consultations take place at our home?
Behaviour consultations are best done in the dogs home as this is the place that they are most comfortable and responsive to training. It is necessary for us to gather as much information as possible about the dogs home life so that we can construct the most effective behaviour plan for your dog.
Who needs to be present for the behaviour consultation?
All members of the family are encouraged to attend the consultation. This is so that we can hear everybody’s perspective and concerns, and so that everyone is on board and understands the training plan.
What should I expect during the consultation?
The first part of the consultation we will investigate the unwanted behaviours, how and when it started, and the methods you have tried to change it. Then we will decide what we DO want your dog to do instead!
Secondly, we form a bespoke behaviour plan for your dog. We will work through the foundations of the behaviour change program during the first session. There is no need to take notes, you will receive a full report of what was discussed during the consultation, along with a full behaviour change plan.
How long will the behaviour change plan take?
The time it takes to change your dog’s behaviour depends on several factors, including the motivation for the behaviour, how long it has been going on, and how much training owners do.
Does the Behaviourist train the dog?
No. We believe the best approach to training is to teach the owner to teach the dog. This way we can give you the tools and knowledge to deal with your dogs behaviour in every real life situation that you encounter.
How many sessions will I need?
We recommend a minimum of two sessions. The first session will be the consultation, where we will talk through and practice the beginning stages of the behaviour modification plan. We then recommend a follow up session two weeks later so we can check in on your progress and provide any additional assistance.
We provide email support for any questions you may have regarding the modification plan and you are welcome to book any additional sessions that you feel you may need.