Therapy Dog Training Programme
Training a dog to do therapy work, whether that’s working in care settings, schools, rehabilitation centres or even workplaces, is one of the most rewarding things that you can do. Because every puppy and dog that comes to us is at a different stage in their training, we develop a specific programme just for you. On average this takes place over six sessions, however we’ve had owners who simply want to have an initial consultation to help their confidence prior to undertaking therapy work, and we’ve also had owners who want help developing more advanced skills with their dogs and therefore work with us over a longer period of time.
Our therapy dog training programme has been developed for anyone who is actively looking to take part in therapy work with their dog.
Because every puppy and dog that comes to us is at a different stage in their training, we develop a specific programme just for you. On average this takes place over six sessions, however we’ve had owners who simply want to have an initial consultation to help their confidence prior to undertaking therapy work, and we’ve also had owners who want help developing more advanced skills with their dogs and therefore work with us over a longer period of time.
We pride ourselves on making sure that everyone we work with goes away with the confidence, skills and knowledge to continue their training, so you can expect to receive a detailed training plan that is easy to follow and allows you to progress even after you have finished your programme.
We are based in Bramham, West Yorkshire and can travel to nearby locations including Wetherby, Tadcaster, Boston Spa, Collingham, Aberford and Barwick in Elmet. If you are outside these areas and would like face to face training, there may be a small fee to cover mileage and travel time which will be agreed with you. We are also happy to discuss online training options.
At a glance
Who? Anyone who is actively looking to take part in therapy work with their dog.
What? Training programme developed specific to the stage that your dog is at.
How long? On average, six sessions
Format? Initial 90 minute consultation, followed by a comprehensive training programme and weekly 60 minute training sessions
Locations? Bramham, Wetherby and surrounding areas. Online training available on request.
Investment? Initial consultation and training programme: £90. Follow up session: £50
What does the training programme cover?
Your initial consultation will last between 60 and 90 minutes and during this session, we will discuss what you would like to get out of the programme, any specific areas of training you would like support with and we will assess your dog from a ‘therapy’ point of view. We will also cover off the first practical training steps in your programme so that you can start training immediately.
From there, we will develop your programme. This will provide you with a good indication of where we need to put our focus and the length of the programme.
Your programme will likely incorporate both training and behaviour work. This may include:
For example recall, heel, sit, down, settle, lead walking
To help overexcitable behaviour or those dogs who become distracted
To ensure your puppy or dog is happy being handled by strangers and comfortable around other dogs
Modification of unwanted behaviours
For example jumping up or licking
Initial consultation (60 – 90 minutes) and bespoke training plan: £90
Follow up sessions (60 minutes): £50
The length of your programme depends on your objectives, your puppy or dog’s current level of training and any behaviours that require modification. On average, this takes around six sessions over a six week period.
Frequently asked questions
Tell me more about the trainer?
You will be coached by Kate Soames. Kate has worked with dogs for 20+ years and is passionate about helping people build the relationship with their dog that they’ve always dreamed of. Kate is an assessed and qualified member of the Institute of Modern Dog Trainers, having passed her assessment with a distinction, and is an advocate for training methods using reward and motivation based techniques. She is also studying advanced canine behaviour management at degree level. You can read more about Kate’s approach here.
Is there an age requirement for my puppy or dog to take part in the therapy dog training programme?
Because we tailor the programme to the stage that your puppy or dog is at, we can begin working with them as soon as they are fully vaccinated. There is no upper limit on the programme; it’s not true that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks!
Can you guarantee that my dog will be able to do therapy work after completing the programme?
Therapy work does not suit every dog, regardless of how well trained they are. Some dogs are genetically predisposed to stress and fear, and others may have had an experience earlier in their lives which has created some underlying anxiety. When we assess your dog in the initial consultation, we will be doing so with their welfare in mind. In other words, if we get any sense that therapy work may cause them to become stressed or anxious, we will let you know. This doesn’t mean you can’t go through the programme (after all, who doesn’t want a dog that has the skills of a therapy dog?!), but we will modify the training plan to ensure you get the most out of it. For example, you may want to work on general obedience or your main goal might actually be more of a behaviour case. Either way, we’ll get to the bottom of it!
How much work will be involved from my perspective?
There’s no doubt about it; training a dog is time intensive and we do ask that you are committed to ‘doing the work’ before signing up. We promise to give you all the tools, techniques and knowledge you need at every stage of your training but ultimately, your success lies in your commitment to training in between our sessions.
Training should never feel like a slog; if it feels that way for you, we can guarantee it’ll be exactly the same for your dog which can result in progress going backwards. Two 15 minute training sessions incorporating play and bonding time in a day can be – and likely will be – more effective than a mammoth one hour training session. We’ll work with you to develop a schedule that fits in with your lifestyle.
One thing’s for sure and that’s that the sense of achievement you will feel as you see your dog progress will make it all feel so worthwhile.
Can you train my dog on my behalf?
Dog training and behaviour is the result of complex interactions between your dog, you, other people in your household, other animals in your household and factors within the environment. To train a dog in a different environment, with a different handler, means that problems are more likely to return when they re-enter their own household, reducing the likelihood of your investment paying off. For this reason, we work with owners and their dogs together, rather than taking your dog away and training them on your behalf.
Have questions you’d like answering before booking? Absolutely no problem, complete the form below and we will get right back to you.