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Best Buddy Dog Training

Frequently Asked Questions

Dog Training Services

We offer in home training services in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Eastern New York State and Rhode Island. For our dog board and train, services are offered to anyone (worldwide). We offer pick up and return delivery in the same areas listed above for in home training.

Usually, the better option is to train your dog yourself - with our help - with our in home dog training program. However, this is and should be a personal choice. There are sometimes issues and circumstances that make board and train the better option. Some examples might be extreme aggression, fighting or car chasing. In other cases board and train is the better option if you simply do not have the time, interest, confidence or physical ability to work with your dog to solve issues that require intense interactions.

No. We don't offer a 'meet and greet' program. If, after speaking with our trainer you can't decide if this is the dog trainer for you, then it is appropriate to continue searching. Often dog trainers offer a 'meet and greet' or 'initial consultation' to access whether or not your dog can be trained (he/she can) or whether they are able to handle the issues presented (we are). At Best Buddy Dog Training, that is all accessed during the initial phone call. In all the years we have been in business, we have never met a dog that was untrainable. It is true that some are more difficult and some issues are more dangerous, but ALL dogs are trainable barring some neurological issue that makes it impossible for them to learn. The only question is how long it might take. Our commitment is to work as long as necessary to correct the issues.

Some dogs warm up to our trainer right away, and some take a few minutes. With patience and assertiveness, your dog will quickly begin to show signs of cooperation because dogs respond to calm leadership. We show this in some of our videos where you can see the dog being aggressive to the trainer on first meeting and quickly (within minutes) becoming peaceful, trusting and cooperative. It's also important to remember that we are there to solve problems ... in some cases, the dog might initially behave aggressively if the dog has normally been allowed to decide things like who can come into the house, or has developed unwanted and inapproproate protective aggression.

In most cases, no. Our position on prong and electronic collars is that they can be excellent tools but can also have unintended consequences when used inappropriately. That said, there are situations, behaviors and circumstances where a prong or electronic collar is appropriate to extinguish dangerous behaviors. Our approach in those cases is to use the tool as necessary, but transition as quickly as possible to a regular training collar. Please read our blog article "Why I (usually) don't use a prong or e-collar" for more insight on this issue.

Yes, but there are exceptions. While consistency is important, all people have their own personality and level of willingness to train and lead the dog appropriately. A well trained dog will respond to all family members with varying degrees of respect and deference. Often between spouses or partners, there is a difference in what is allowed and expected from the dog. We leave that up to you to work out so long as one style of interaction is not causing trouble with the other. Cooperation between the humans is critically important. That said, it is sometimes inappropriate to include small children or occasional visitors in the training because the training is based on relationship. Among dogs, that relationship is always based on hierarchy and status. In the case of small children, the dog will often see them as playmates or subordinates and will ignore their commands, etc. We recommend having the adults (and family members older than 16) work with the dog initially, and then once the dog is trained and responding well it is possible to include younger family members.

Yes, but we don't recommend it. While with us for board and train, your dog is often learning an entirely new way of interacting with humans. It is important during this process that we don't 'remind' the dog of his old way of behaving. The best approach is to give your dog some time and space to learn his new behaviors. It is generally true that when we return the dog, he will be excited and his behavior will momentarily deteriorate due to that excitement. For example, the dog may run to you and jump on you if that has been the old pattern of behavior. This will be immediately corrected. Also, once the dog is back in his familiar environment, he may try to behave as before due to familiarity and old habits. It's best to get those habits replaced with new habits without the interruption of a visit so that upon return your dog can more easily settle into his new patterns of behavior.

Yes. In some cases, the in home training might prove to be more difficult than you anticipated. Humans often have a hard time changing old habits. In those cases, you can switch to the board and train program, subject to availablility, and you would simply pay the difference in price. If so, the in home training will be continued when the dog returns to you as part of the return process.

Clients

Choose a program under the 'dog training' menu and visit that page. Read the page and near the bottom you will find an 'enroll' button. Click that button and a screen pops up. Please read the information on that popup screen carefully. Once you have read it, click the 'continue' button and you will be redirected to a checkout page where you can enter payment information (we use PayPal, but you do not need a PayPal account to enroll). Once your payment is completed you will then see a form to complete with your information and information about your dog. We must speak before you enroll. Any enrollments without a phone consultation will be denied and immediately refunded.

Our initial phone call will include discussion about the issues you are having wtih your dog, and how to prepare for the first session. In most cases, the trainer will be able to give you some pointers that will show results even before we meet. Still there are things to remember: The dog should be wearing and dragging a leash when the trainer arrives. Please do not hold onto the leash. It's important that the trainer have the opportunity to see the dog's behavior unfettered as well as to avoid stressing the dog more by frustrating him/her. All toys and resources should be put away. If the dog is likely to run off into another room to hide, all doors should be closed if possible to prevent escape to another room.

No. This will generally not solve any issues, and can serve to obscure the negative behaviors. In solving behavioral issues, it's important to see the issues as they are and to go directly towards solving those issues rather than avoiding them or obscuring them. It's impossible to solve a behavioral problem that doesn't have a chance to present.

Yes. Our guarantee is that we will continue working with you and your dog until the issues are fixed, so long as you are following protocals and maintaining structure as outlined. Dogs, like people, have personalities and are intelligent sentient beings. Therefore, it is not possible to accurately predict how long the training will take. Some issues are more difficult than others. We are committed to your satisfaction and the well-being of your dog.

Generally not. However if your dog requires a special diet, or is on any medication for physical issues we will need a supply of that food or medication. If your dog is on heartworm medication or using medication for parasite control, please provide a supply as appropriate. All care is provided here and your dog will have his own crate where he will sleep at night and when not supervised. There is no need to send toys or blankets, as those items are often 'resources' that can trigger possessiveness and lead to fights among dogs (and even bites to humans). We provide the training collar and if your dog is not on a special diet, we provide all food. Grooming is optional. We have a mobile groomer come on a regular schedule. If your dog is here when the groomer arrives and you want your dog to be professionally groomed, let us know. There may be a small fee involved.

It is not required, but preferred. Our oldest dog, the White German Shepherd Simon, is not altered. Bringing in an unaltered female dog requires more safety precautions and care to avoid unwanted pregnancy. If the unspayed female goes into 'heat' during her stay it will cause a lot of stress for Simon, for understandable reasons. If your dog is scheduled for neutering or spaying, it's a good idea to wait until after surgery and recovery is complete. That said, we can handle your dog and have protocols and procedures in place to prevent problems.

Yes. You are encouraged to check in as often as you like either by phone, text, or email. We do our best to provide updates and always will contact you if something notable happens during training. We also will shoot videos, weather permitting. However, we won't bother you with unimportant daily details.

Your Account/Profile

Your contract will be available in your profile page after the first lesson. On your profile page you can do things like see and download a copy of your contract, change your profile picture, and upload documents such as vaccination records as necessary.

Click the 'login' link in the navigation bar and select 'reset password' in the popup screen. Enter the username you registered with and a reset password email will be sent to the registered email address. Follow the instructions in the email. if you have forgotten your username, please contact us via the contact page.

When you register on the site, you can do things like comment on blogposts and videos. You are automatically registered on the website when you enroll. However, you are not automatically enrolled when you register on the website. Enrollment buttons are found only on the relevant training program pages.

Click the 'login' link in the navigation bar and sign in. The 'login' button will now have an avatar and your username where the 'login' was previously. Click on your username and a dropdown menu appears. There you can find a link to your profile/account page and a link to logout.

Got more questions?

We're happy to talk to you and answer any questions or concerns you might have about our services.

Visit Our Blog

You can get some questions answered by reading our blog articles. Register and sign in to comment and ask questions.

Watch Our Videos

Our videos, while not intended to be instructive, can answer a lot of questions about how we work and what you can expect from our training.

Contact Us

You can send an inquiry from the contact page. Feel free to ask anything. Shawn will generally get back to you via phone as soon as possible, usually within 24 hours.