foundations for a happy family
helping dogs and families live happily every day
If you’re considering training your dog, you may have heard about obedience training. But at Extraordinary Canines, we think about things differently. We believe that training should be about building a strong relationship with your dog based on positive reinforcement and mutual respect, not about forcing them to “obey” through fear or intimidation.
Our Foundations classes are designed to help you and your dog get started with basic skills and manners training. Whether you have an older (aka senior) puppy, a teen dog, or an older dog with little training, our classes are the perfect way to get your training journey underway.
In Foundations classes, we’ll teach you how to communicate with your dog effectively using positive reinforcement techniques. You’ll learn how to motivate your dog to follow your cues using rewards, building a bond of trust and respect that will last a lifetime.
Our goal is to give you the tools you need to succeed, and to help you understand the underlying concepts behind positive reinforcement training. We believe that with a little knowledge and a lot of love, you and your dog can achieve extraordinary things.
We offer two options for our Foundations classes: in-person and online. Our in-person classes provide live coaching from our expert trainers in a social group setting, while our online classes offer expanded skills and problem-solving for behavior issues. We encourage families seeking to get the most out of their training to sign up for both.
No matter which option you choose, we’re committed to helping you and your dog build a strong, positive relationship.
Join us for Foundations classes and let us help you and your pup unlock your full potential!
THREE WAYS TO LEARN FOUNDATIONS
IN-PERSON, ONLINE, OR BOTH?
Group Foundations Class
Our in-person classes are perfect for those who prefer the social atmosphere of a group setting and seek live coaching from their trainer. These classes provide a great opportunity to learn alongside other families and their dogs. Great for dogs that are ready to learn in a distracting setting.
Complete Foundations Class
For those who want to expand their training beyond what we can cover in a our group classes, we also offer an online version of Foundations that includes more behaviours as well as guidance on tackling common unwanted behaviors. This is great way to get started and also a great option for dogs not quite ready for the distractions of a group class setting.
get the most out of training by combining group and online
BeneFITS FOR BOTH CLASSES?
Basic Training Concepts
Advanced Training Concepts
Real time coaching
Access for a full year
Reactive dogs welcome
Settling on Place
Sit & Down
Leash walking skills
Waiting at doors
We encourage families interested in group classes to also sign up for the online course (Hybrid Foundations) to be able to review lessons at home in a less distracting environment. We also encourage families enrolled in the Hybrid format to start on skills ahead of classes.
— group classes are in session —
new classes will begin in June and dates will be posted late in May
Note that group classes are unable to accommodate reactive dogs or those that bark excessively. Please email us if you are unsure about your dog’s fit into class.
Frequently Asked Questions.
Have questions? Check our FAQs before sending us an email!
How old should my dog be when I start classes?
Online Course: Any age.
In-Person Class: Over 4 months old.
Our training priority for puppies under 4 months old is for socialization, however, families that can dedicate at least 30 – 60 minutes every day to socialization exercises and excursions with their puppies may have enough time to also start on Foundations training at home with our online course.
All dogs attending our in-person group classes must be fully vaccinated (DAPP/DHLPP and Rabies) to attend classes. This means that dogs enrolled in our group classes will be 4 months of age or older.
There is no maximum age to attend group classes, however, older dog without prior training may be reactive in a group class setting and therefore would not appropriate to attend a group class.
Can my reactive dog attend group classes? What is a reactive dog?
No. Reactive dogs will be dismissed from attending group classes.
Reactive dogs may be better described as “over-reactive” in regular language. A “reactive” dog may lunge, bark at, growl, or otherwise unfavourably respond to the presence of certain triggers (most commonly other dogs or strangers). Some reactive dogs are fearful of their triggers while others are overly excited.
We hope to offer options for reactive dogs in the future, however, at this time we will have to dismiss reactive dogs that are causing disruptions to others.
Dogs that may bark once or twice at another dog nearby but is able to quickly be redirected and quieted by their handler are welcome (provided the handler uses force free redirection and does not use “corrections”). What we cannot allow are dogs that bark for prolonged periods throughout class which interrupts class instruction and/or disturbs the training of other dogs in the class.
Note that our regular refund policy applies to reactive dogs and once a family has started classes we cannot offer refunds in the event that a dog is not a good fit for group classes due to reactivity. We do, however, encourage humans of that family continue to attend classes without the reactive dog to watch, learn, and ask questions.
What vaccinations does my dog need to have to attend class?
DAPP/DHPP and Rabies
Dogs must be fully up to date on all standard vaccines. We encourage families to vaccinate against bordetella, but do not require it. Proof of DAPP/DHPP and rabies vaccination is required.
How many dogs are in a class? How many instructors?
Class sizes maximum is 4 dogs. One certified professional dog trainer leading the class. On occassion we may also have an apprentice trainer help with our Foundations classes.
Each dog has a personal working space of approximately 200 square feet PLUS a buffer zone between them and the next family.
Will my puppy get to play with other dogs in the group class?
Foundations class is not a socialization class. Our focus for dogs over 4 months of age is to build a value for their family and to teach the dog to ignore the presence of other dogs.
If your dog is over 4 months old and has not been socialized yet, unfortunately, you have missed your puppy’s “sensitive period for socialization” and their temperament in regards to other dogs, as well as their level of confidence, is somewhat determined; it likely will only be able to be modified minorly. Younger dogs may be able to overcome fears and phobias more easily than older dogs, however, it is substantially more difficult to provide positive socialization to dogs over 12 – 16 weeks old.
I am struggling with a behaviour issue. Will I receive support for that in this class?
While the online Foundations course does include information on preventing, managing, and trouble-shooting common behaviour concerns, true behaviour modification requires customized plans and deep understanding of your personal situations and goals that we cannot handle in a class.
Foundations training is not a replacement for one-to-one training and is not a customized class.
While we do address questions related to the class content both through the online course and in group classes, any questions outside of the scope of this course, particularly in regards to behaviour issues, will be referred out to personal training.
Topics outside the scope of the Foundations course include: separation anxiety, barrier frustration, reactivity, noise phobias, general anxiety and aggression.