Are you wondering how online training works?
1. You have a dog that you think will be suitable as your service dog or are waiting to get your dog or pup.
2. You have or will be creating a support team to help you train and maintain your service dog. If your disability will impact your ability to do the actual training, you will need to have a training helper to keep you on track and do things you are unable to do.
3. You plan when you are going to join the classes. Choose the courses you need and note when they are being offered. You can take one or several classes over any period of time.
4. You sign up during the registration period between the first Wednesday of each month to the second Wednesday. If you want web cam sessions, sign up and send your best time (noting what time zone you are in) for the 3 x 30 min weekly sessions. Rescheduling requires 48 hours notice for the webcam sessions.
5. Once you pay, you have instant access to the class materials that are posted in online classrooms for 2 years. There is text, photos, and step-by-step videos. Checklists of all steps make it easy to keep you on track. Here is a sample lecture to give you an idea of how the content is presented.
6. Train with your dog through the materials at home or away from home. If you do web cam sessions, you are responsible to follow the program and note down any questions for your weekly private session with your instructor.
Most classes use materials that are easily found at home, cheap to purchase or can be borrowed. (Plant pots, ice cream lids and buckets, rubber hoses, etc.)
Some classes will need helpers and/or their dogs as distractions or the student to will need transportation and the ability to go into more distracting environments like parks and retail stores etc.
It is Expected that Each Student:
- work with their dog an average of at least 5 hours per week, during class: indoors and out, on field trips and at events (this varies from short 5-minute training sessions two or three times a day to 2-hour long public access training outings.) This does not include the dog's active exercise time.
- keep a training journal or log
- use training approaches as taught in class
- will not use corrective devices on their dogs (this works against what we are teaching you and your dog). E-collars, prong collars, choke chains, slip collars and no-pull harnesses that tighten are considered corrective devices
- will video themselves training their dogs
SDTI DOES NOT certify service dogs.
Since SDTI has no control over the dog you choose as a service dog, it is your obligation for the handler to ensure that the dog is a suitable service dog candidate.
Please check our FREE sample class "Choose Your Own Service Dog" link