A Sample Week

Learn From Practice, Discussion, & Real Casework With Clients

Beagle with lady in park red and turquoise1

Sample Week (Week 11)

Wondering what it would be like to attend the Dog Training Internship Academy? To give you an idea, here’s an overview of the eleventh week of one session. At this point, students are halfway through the curriculum and have solid experience trouble-shooting behavior modification plans and dealing with clients.

TUESDAY 6–8pm  Online lecture/discussion with visuals (slides, videos, and various documents).

Burning questions. Here, students ask any questions of immediate concern before the planned discussion begins.

Debrief week’s assignment. Students have been asked to list any problems they anticipate in successfully resolving current behavior mod projects, and to categorize and prioritize these and plan possible solutions. This week, problem categories include: technical training issues, client compliance with management, challenges with transferring training to client.

Two student assignments are analyzed. One concerns a variety of client management issues in a reactivity training case. The second concerns how to help a client prioritize multiple behavior issues in a multiple dog household. We review relevant management and goal-setting slides during the discussion.

Case study review. Students review a real-life case study involving a newly adopted dog who is lunging and barking at people and dogs out on walks. Discussion involves how the environment is contributing to the behavior and recognizing the role client stress plays as well. Students formulate questions they would ask the client to gather more information.

Behavior topic. We discuss resource guarding and options for managing and modifying the the behavior. This includes assessing the situation to keep both clients and dog safe. Students watch video content illustrating the behavior and approaches to modification.

Backchaining behavior. We discuss the how-to of backchaining complex behaviors in preparation for students’ upcoming “dead retrieve” assignment. Students have questions about typical behaviors to backchain and the group brainstorms a starting point for the training plan and how and when to move to the next steps.

Wrap up. We go through the logistics for the upcoming week, including a preview of the content of a quiz.

WEDNESDAY 6:00–8:00pm  Students meet to observe a client consultation first-hand. Afterward, they debrief and one student has questions about how to promote buy-in and compliance with clients. A round table discussion produces a variety of strategies that have proven successful for the other students and instructors. 

SATURDAY 4:00–6:00pm  

Students bring project dogs to the training center in for coaching.

It’s week 3 of a 5-week project involving the second dog. Behaviors students are working on include sit-stays for greeting strangers, down-stays on a bed while visitors enter the home or family eats a meal, recalls from high-level competing motivation, leave-its for food dropped on ground during walks, and a CER to wearing a muzzle.

One student is having difficulty with the last stage of their project dog’s muzzle CER. The instructor and class observe and brainstorm together.

Pit pup sleeping

DTIA People


From the Grads

"The wonderful trainers in the Dog Training Internship Academy (DTIA) helped make my dreams a reality. Not only do I have a greater understanding about how animals learn best and many hours of practice under my belt, but I also was given the skills to start my own dog training business right after graduation!" --Alyssa Hosbach, Owner of Dancing Tails Dog Training

From the Grads

"DTIA gave me a real understanding of the how and why of science-based, positive reinforcement training. I now come into new training situations with the ability to pinpoint all the necessary information and make a plan with confidence." --Sathid Pankaew, Behavior & Training Coordinator, East Bay SPCA

From the Grads

"Dog industry business consultant Veronica Boutelle recommended the DTIA program to me when I asked about apprenticeship programs. She is familiar with every program in the country and unequivocally pronounced the DTIA the best one available. Well, she didn’t oversell it." --Erik Grendahl, Canine Behavior Consultant

From the Grads

"Attending the DTIA program was a wonderful decision. Not only will it advance my career but it has also opened the door to so many other professional possibilities." --Luba Podolsky, Adoptions Manager, Family Dog Rescue