Canine College Public Access Test

Disclaimer: We primarily train light Mobility, Psychiatric Service Dogs as well as Seizure Response Dogs.

Pre-Requesites:
Dog should not exceed two and a half years of age and has to pass the initial evaluation. Your dog has to go through Basic Obedience, Advanced Obedience and pass a Temperament Test before he/she can go through our Public Access Test.

servicedogsAmount of Training: a “Canine College” Service Dog requires a minimum of 250 hours of training over the period of at least 10 months or more. At least 35 hours should be devoted to public outings to prepare the dog to work in public settings obediently.

Obedience Training and Basic Manners:  your Service Dog must master the following skills:

  • Sit
  • Down
  • Stand
  • Stay
  • Come (including a dropped leash recall)
  • Heel
  • Place (tucking under a chair, table, or anywhere else in public)
  1. No aggressive behaviors towards animals or humans meaning: no fear aggression, no biting, reactivity, snarling, snapping, growling or lunging at them while working in public settings.
  2.  Your dog shouldn’t solicit any food nor pets from people while being on the job.
  3. Your dog should ignore any food on the ground, or dropped within the vicinity of the dog while working in a public setting
  4. Your dog should not sniff people, intrude another dogs space nor sniff any merchandise in public
  5. Your dog should be well socialized and not show any fear of lights, sounds or sudden changes while in a public setting
  6. No unnecessary unruly behaviors or vocalization while working in a public setting, your dog must be able to work calmly on a leash without being a nuisance.
  7. No urinating or pooping unless you specifically take the dog for a potty break
  8. ALL FOUR ON THE GROUND!

Task Training: Your dog must be individually trained to perform at least 3 identifiable tasks on command, hand signal or cue that directly mitigates your disability i.e. retrieving, two way hearing alert, blocking, guiding, medical alert, seizure response etc.
Spontaneous behavior or Emotional Support is not considered a task. Your dog must be reliably trained to exhibit an individually trained task.

Training Records: You will have to keep Training Records to track your hours. Training Records can be downloaded here:  Public Access Training Log

Training Tools: You are allowed to train and test with the training tool of your choice.

 

 

Crate Train and Manage your Puppy

You just got home from work and walk through the door. You can see the first piddle and pile of poop in the hallway. Toilet-paper is all over the place, a trashbag halfway dragged through the living room, your underwear chewed up and a plant knocked over. Your brand new couch has a hole chewed into the armrest and your blinds are torn down. Your 4 month old puppy comes running from the bedroom and jumps all over you, scratching your arms with those razor sharp needle claws. He’s excited to see you and does not understand why all of a sudden you get angry and push his nose into the poop and pee.

You go online and ask for help, some suggest to crate train your puppy but you don’t feel comfortable to put your puppy up for 6+ hours. Other suggest a dog walker, but your puppy doesn’t walk very well on a leash and you don’t like when a stranger comes into your house anyways.

So you get some hard bones and antlers, those are durable and should occupy your puppy throughout the day. You also lock your puppy into the bathroom since there isn’t much he could destroy. When you get home everything seems to be fine and it’s easy to clean up the pee and poop since the bathroom has tile floors. You can see the scratch marks on the door and the corner has been chewed on. Three days later you get a noise complaint and there now is a small hole in the door.

You don’t crate your puppy over night either. He’s allowed to sleep in bed with you, but he’s restless, pacing all over the place, whining and is trying to get your attention by constantly nudging and pawing you. But again, crating is for lazy people. You don’t want to do that. You don’t want to be one of “those” people that just lock a puppy up.

When you sit on the couch he’s still biting your hands and legs. You push him away and yelp “Ouch”, that’s supposed to help with the biting.

A month later there is a hole in your bathroom door and your puppy has chewed up the couch, your brand new shoes, through the TV cable, gone through the trash, and probably eaten half a bag of coffee beans and chocolate that was on the counter. Your comforter is shredded, your pillow has been peed on and your puppy is standing in front of you trying to throw up. You have to call the vet and if they can’t pump the stomach you are likely looking at a couple thousand dollars in surgery.

These are the type of stories that we get to hear on a daily basis. People have tried to crate their puppy but given up after the first two nights because the puppy wouldn’t stop crying. Instead of waiting the puppy out, or trying a different approach they gave up on the crate and give the puppy too much freedom which almost always ends up with a destroyed house and/or vet visit and in some cases even death due to the puppy having ingested something toxic.

Instead of giving into the puppy here are some tips to make crate training a little easier:

  • You need the right size crate. Your crate shouldn’t be too small or too big. Your puppy should be comfortable enough to stand up, turn around and lay comfortably down. If you have a large crate, use the divider.
  • Keep the crate in the main living area. It’s much easier to get a puppy used to the crate if they can still see and hear us. Now, the pup is still going to cry in the beginning but it shouldn’t last as long as it would if the pup was entire secluded from the family.
  • Feed your puppy in the crate. I do things a little different. For the first week my puppies don’t get normal meals. Instead I ration the meals and everytime they come back from a potty break or after I’ve worked with them, I toss a handfull of food into the crate. That immensely raises the value of the crate.
  • Crate your puppy in the car whenever you take them along for a ride.  Your puppy learns that there is value in the crate. The easiest way to get a puppy used to the crate is to crate them whenever you take them on car rides.
  • Play Crate Games from Susan Garrett with your puppy. You can buy her DVD online and it’s an invaluable training tool to not only build value in the crate but also patience and impulse control in your puppy.

Don’t feel bad to manage your puppy. Whether your are home or not doesn’t matter.  If your puppy is out of control, super bitey and overall obnoxious, take them out of the situation. Put them up. Utilize the crate to your advantage. If your puppy is just 10-12 weeks old, pushing them away from you isn’t going to help the situation, they only come back harder. So don’t feel bad to utilize the crate and manage the puppy. It not only protects your household good but also the puppy. Most puppies can’t handle the amount of freedom you are giving them. They are not adult dogs. If they are bored, they’ll have a party and destroy your entire house and themselves in the process. If you have two puppies of the same age, it’s going to be an even harder time to keep control over the situation. Your puppies will feed off of each other and have a party. They won’t pay much attention to you since they have each other. So you have to crate train and sometimes rotate them in and out of the crate to build a relationship with them. They will also need individual experiences so you won’t have dogs that later suffer from litter mate syndrome.

 

RECALL CLASS

E-Collar_Logo_RetreiverIs your dog a runner? You open the door, he slips out and is gone? You can’t take your dog off leash anywhere but would like to enjoy off leash hikes? Our new Recall Class will give you the freedom that you and your dog deserve.

 

Pre-Requisites: “Evaluation for Basic Obedience and Engagement” (there has to be a certain level of engagement between you and your dog).

What you need:

  • Remote Collar (included in the package)
  • 30ft Leash
  • Lots of Food or a Toy

Duration: 6 week class
Cost: $380 (incl. the Mini Educator ET300)
Payment is due upfront.

To sign up for this class please fill in the dog questionnaire, once we received the questionnaire we will get in touch with you to schedule the evaluation.

 

 

Let your dog decompress!

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We’ve all been there. We’ve all brought a new dog home, and we’ve all got excited about our new family members and immediately taken them places. To the pet store, family gatherings, into overwhelming social settings all the while the dog never even had the chance to settle in.

We get a lot of shelter dogs and the first thing most owner do is to give them the free reign of the house without establishing any boundaries or rules which sometimes results in uncomfortable situations. The dog just got out of a very stressful environment and we expect them to be incredibly resilient. After the shelter comes the decompression phase and within the first few weeks we don’t get to see the “real” personality of the dog. Usually it takes about a month before they truly settle in.

What we usually do with any dog that comes through our house is to implement a structured routine and shut down period.

When we first bring a dog home, we take them out into the front yard first and make sure they pottied. Then we bring them into the house and give them a quick tour. They are not introduced to our own dogs. That comes way later. We then crate the new dog to let them decompress and put them on a schedule. Dogs thrive off of structure and clear expectations. Through the shutdown period our already existing dogs get to know the newcomers. Our dogs are used to having a constant stream of new dogs coming in and out, but that doesn’t mean we toss them into cold water each time a new dog comes in.

Anyhow, here are some quick rules for bringing a new dog into the house which are widely used in the foster community. These rules also work for new puppies or already existing dogs that have had too much freedom and ignore their owners and are out of control:

– Don’t take your dog on a walk. Walks are overstimulating and there are way too many variables that are out of your control. You don’t know your dog, and your dog doesn’t know if he can trust you yet. Instead, exercise your dog in your front or backyard on a longline and get to know each other to build a bond.

– Do not take them to the dog park or pet store. Don’t visit your friends place or social gatherings until you’ve gotten to know your dogs quirks and built a bond. These situations can be overstimulating for your dog and you don’t know how they are going to react in these types of situations.

– Implement structure, boundaries and rules. That means if you cannot actively supervise your dog, your dog is crated. Do not allow your dog on furniture, do not allow your dog on the bed, it’s a privilege that has to be earned and a new dog shouldn’t be allowed these privileges without earning them, ESPECIALLY if there is another dog already living in the household. Put him on a schedule just like you would do with a puppy. It gives them routine and clear expectations. You control the environment. Do not let the new dog take control over situations.

– If you already have a pet, the new addition is an intruder and the new dog does not know the routine of the household. You have to set structure and a routine for the new dog without inflicting your existing dogs freedom and privileges. The already existing dog was here first.

– Handfeed! Nothing in life is for free! Food is money, it’s how you pay the dog. Do not give him anything for free. Let the dog work for his meals. Hand feed his meals for the first week and make him work for his food. This is a very important step, that resources in your house have to be earned.

– This is the most important rule of them all: DO NOT PUT YOUR FACE INTO A NEW DOGS FACE! YOU DO NOT KNOW THIS DOG! It can be incredibly intimidating to a dog that does not know you and most bites happen within the first two weeks due to this very reason. Do not make kissy noises and try to kiss the dogs face or give them any unstructured affection.

Most of the time, this is a two week protocol. In dog training, slow is fast. The slower you take things, the faster your dog feels safe and builds a bond with you. This is merely a guideline. How you implement it, is up to you. We’ve had great success with shutting dogs down, whether they’ve been new, or unruly young adults that needed a little more structure or puppies, boarding or foster dogs… it’s always worked.

Don’t feel bad about taking control, don’t feel bad about controlling the environment. Dogs are not made out of glass, they can handle it. And always remember: Slow is fast, fast is slow. You’ve got all the time in the world to build a bond with your dog.

While this guide is primarily for new dogs coming out of a shelter you can also apply these same rules to a dog that just went through a tremendous amount of stress. Especially military families with anxious dogs and pcs’ing every few years. Give your dogs time. Not all of them handle change well. Let them decompress!

What is a Service Animal

There is an epidemic in this country and that epidemic is called “Service Dogs”. It’s become fashionable to have one and there are a lot of misconceptions and misinformation out there about Service Dogs. So what is a Service Dog?

Under the ADA, a service animal is defined as a dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability. The task(s) performed by the dog must be directly related to the person’s disability.

A pet dog should not be “turned into a Service Dog” just because you want to make a fashion statement. There is real work involved with building a Service Dog. If I could choose whether or not I truly need a Service Dog, I’d go without one. I wish I could walk without crutches for even 1/4 of a mile, walk down stairs by myself and pick up things that I have dropped. It took years of hard work to get my dog where he is today and it never stops. His training has to be maintained regularly.

What tasks does my Service Dog provide:

    • Blocking
    • Counter Balance
    • Momentum Pull
    • Opening Drawers and getting Medication
    • Opening Doors
    • Retrieval of any dropped item or directed retrieves

The following video shows my Service Dogs behavior, public access obedience and task training:

Service Dog Work from Sandra King on Vimeo.

In situations where it is not obvious that the dog is a service animal, staff may ask only two specific questions: (1) is the dog a service animal required because of a disability? and (2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform? Staff are not allowed to request any documentation for the dog, require that the dog demonstrate its task, or inquire about the nature of the person’s disability.

While there is no official certification or registration, businesses are absolutely allowed to ask questions. They can ask you whether or not your dog is a Service Animal and what the dog does to mitigate your disability. That being said, the law does invite people to commit Service Dog Fraud. In case your dog is unruly, a nuisance or not housebroken, the business is within it’s right to remove your dog.

A service animal may not be excluded based on assumptions or stereotypes about the animal’s breed or how the animal might behave. However, if a particular service animal behaves in a way that poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others, has a history of such behavior, or is not under the control of the handler, that animal may be excluded. If an animal is excluded for such reasons, staff must still offer their goods or services to the person without the animal present.

Furthermore, emotional support and comforting is not considered a task. If all your dog does is to comfort you, that’s what an Emotional Support Dog is for. Service Dogs are specifically task trained to mitigate ones disability.

The dog must be trained to take a specific action when needed to assist the person with a disability. For example, a person with diabetes may have a dog that is trained to alert him when his blood sugar reaches high or low levels. A person with depression may have a dog that is trained to remind her to take her medication. Or, a person who has epilepsy may have a dog that is trained to detect the onset of a seizure and then help the person remain safe during the seizure.

Last but not least, the difference between Service Dogs, Emotional Support Dogs and Therapy Dogs. There is a lot of confusion between Therapy Dogs and Service Dogs specifically. Often times people say “I want him to be my Therapy Animal.” or “How do I train him to be my Therapy Service Dog?”

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Graphic made by “Project Canine”

Low Cost Spay & Neuter in NNY

Spay – Neuter NOW

Spay – Neuter NOW is a local program and 501c3 non profit organization.

All Spay-Neuter-Now spay/neuter assistance programs require clients to fill out an application for assistance.

Program eligibility includes:

  • Income-Qualified Households for Cats & Dogs
  • Military Households for Cats
  • Caretakers of Unowned, Stray, Feral, Colony or Barn Cats

For more information about Spay – Neuter NOW please visit their Website.

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Friends of Animals

Friends of Animals lists two participating vets: Northcountry Veterinary Clinic and Limerick Vet.

To get a Friends of Animals certificate you have to follow their Instructions.

Instructions

1. Contact a veterinarian listed below before proceeding to the next step:

  • Confirm the veterinarian’s continued participation in the Friends of Animals Spay & Neuter program
  • Inform the veterinarian that you intend to use Friends of Animals’ spay/neuter certificate.
  • Ask about any restrictions and additional charges
  • Do not make an appointment until after you have received your certificate in the mail.

2. After contacting a vet from the listings below, check the box at the bottom of the screen and proceed to the next step

If you have any questions, please email or call FoA at 1-800-321-7387 M – F, 9-5 Eastern Time.

Mike Suttle/Bill DotsonDetection Dog Workshop

Where: CANINE COLLEGE  (WATERTOWN NY)
Cost (non-refundable): $300 for Working Spots
$100 for Audit Spots
Trainers:
Mike Suttle (http://www.loganhauskennels.com/about_us)
Bill Dotson (http://www.sdona.org/about/board-of-directors/)

October 10th to October 13th LEO Workshop
October 14th to October 17th SAR/Nosework/Service Dogs/ etc.

REGISTSTRATION FORM:  Detection Dog Workshop Registration Form(PDF)
Detection Dog Workshop Registration Form (DOCX)
Please email the registration form to collegecanine@gmail.com or send it to our physical address.

LEO Workshop
Focus: Narcotic, Explosives and HRD Detection. Officers will have to bring their own Explosive and Narcotic Odors. We will provide large and small HRD Source.

SAR/Nosework/Service Dogs etc.
Focus: HRD and any type of Odor Detection whether it is Nosework, Bed Bugs or Peanut Detection Dogs. Handlers will have to provide their source. We will provide large and small HRD Source and have Nosework Source available.

Topics for both Workshops Include:

  • Operant Conditioning
  • Scent Wall Training
  • Building and Capping Drive
  • Dog Selection
  • Odor Recognition
  • Commitment to Odor
  • How to develop a final trained response
  • Building a reward system
  • Troubleshooting

Both Workshops are limited to 15 K9 Handler Teams and 15 Observers

Please contact Sandra King to book this Seminar.
Phone Number: 315 486 7464
Email: collegecanine@gmail.com
Payment is due upfront