Q. What qualifications does the trainer have?
A. Kris is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, Knowledge Assessed as granted by the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers. This organization, recognized world wide, tests applicants as to their knowledge in addition to requiring they complete at least 300 hours of hands-on teaching prior to even applying to write the exam. In addition the applicant must seek the referral of another CPDT trainer and a veterinarian before writing. The exam itself rivals any exams offered by university or technical college, taking up to 4 hours to complete the 250 multiple choice questions. To maintain a designation as a CPDT, trainers are required to continue their professional development by earning continuing eduction credits to keep information fresh and re-apply every 3 years. Credits are earned through approved workshops, conferences and webinars.
Q. Where is Ministik Hills?
A. Above is a picture of our location. To find your way here, Google "Ministik Hills Dog Training." It will bring you to 51072 Range Road 203, Sherwood Park. It is just a bit over 30 minute's drive from Sherwood Park and Camrose, and is nearest to the town of Tofield.
Q. What COVID-19 precautions are being employed?
A. First, full disclosure: Instructor is completely vaccinated and encourages clients to be as well - that means the humans. By the way, dogs should also be vaccinated with appropriate canine vaccines. This is all in the name of safety and health of my family, my dogs, your family and your dog. If you are feeling unwell, please make arrangements to stay home. You will not be penalized for asking for a postponement of an appointment. The same applies to your dog; stay home if he/she is not well. Masks may be required if it is not possible to remain at a distance. We do work outdoors. Clients will not be entering the house.
Q. What's included in the cost of the programs?
A. Pricing for programs includes information that is based on scientific principles, latest research, the formal education and professional experience of 15 years as a dog trainer. In addition to training and coaching, you receive handouts to help you remember what you've learned, along with tips for living with your dog in general. A great deal of time is spent preparing documents, as a program is developed to meet the needs of you and your dog. Also included are a number of considerations that go into a small business: training supplies, resources, professional development, insurance, transportation, facility rentals when appropriate and office supplies. You are welcome to contact Kris with questions while actively working with her, and even after scheduled sessions have been completed.
Q. How do I pay for sessions?
A. Payments may be made using e-transfers, simply sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Payment for services is required prior to the sessions.
Q. What do I need to bring to sessions?
A. Bring along a healthy dog, a 6 ft. leash, flat buckle collar and treats. Please check the snugness of your dog's collar. It should be tight enough to just accommodate 2 fingers between your dog's neck and collar. Use of a harness is also very welcome. Suggested treats may include commercially produced ones made in Canada or the US. They should be soft and cut small (the size of a pea) and ideally a variety to keep your dog's attention. You may also use hot dogs, left over BBQed meat, cheese or even vegetables if your dog is crazy about them. Bring lots - at least a cup or more! Dress for action: sturdy footwear and comfortable clothing suited to working outside.
Q. Why do we use treats to train?
A. Treats are used to help lure dogs into the positions we want - as opposed to manipulating them physically. The reward of the food can be effective in creating a dog that is very motivated to work with you and helps speed up the learning process by making it pleasurable. Very simply speaking, the presence of the food helps kick in a chemical reaction in your dog's brain that leaves him with feelings of pleasure that contributes to making associations between your words, hand signals and desired behaviours. Other forms of rewards will also be discussed and/or employed.
Q. Can other people come along to sessions?
A. Not at this time, due to COVID-19 safety protocols, unless this has been discussed with the Instructor. Dog and handler will remain outside, with no entry into the house.