Q: If I miss a class can I make it up?
A: Unfortunately, we are not able offer make up classes. Like most schools, our classes are taught in order and once you have missed one, it won’t be taught again for a long time. However we are happy to provide you with corresponding worksheets so you can practice at home. In addition, our trainers are always happy to meet a few minutes before or after class to answer questions.
Q: My puppy does not have all of his/her shots yet. Can they still attend puppy kindergarten?
A: Yes! In fact, we designed Puppy Kindergarten specifically for pups who have not yet completed their full vaccinations. We strongly encourage puppy owners not to wait to begin socialization classes until they have completed all vaccinations. This is because your dog is in a crucial developmental phase that ends around the time you get that last booster. Basically, by the time your puppy is fully vaccinated it is too late to ensure that they get all of the training they need. Puppy class is designed for pups at this level of vaccination, and preventative measures are taken. To learn more, read the American Veterinary Society's position statement on the subject by clicking here.
Q: How do I enroll in a class?
A: In order to start the enrollment process submit your information via our website or by phone. Our admin team will enroll you in class once we have all the necessary information.
Q: How many private training sessions will it require to correct my dog's behavior?
A: Every case requires a different number of visits, and one of our trainers has to meet with you in order to assess how many sessions you need. Of course, we understand that it is difficult to plan training without having a precise number, so our rule of thumb is to always plan on a minimum of 2 sessions: One initial consultation and one follow up visit. If your goals or issues are more complex, requiring more sessions, your trainer will discuss this with you at the initial consultation and we can develop a plan that works for everyone.
Q: Can I buy a 3 or 5 pack of sessions in advance?
A: No. Traditionally, training companies sell packages in this way, but we have found it to be ineffective. Often we won’t require the number of sessions that you predicted in order to meet your goals, then you will have wasted your money on the extra sessions.
Q: Can I cancel or reschedule my private training session?
A:Training plans and schedules are carefully devised to help you see results as quickly and efficiently as possible, and canceling will often effect your outcomes, so be careful with this. We strongly encourage you to stick to your confirmed schedule, but if you have an emergency, just let us know with as much notice as possible so that we can help another dog in need. We require a minimum of 72-hours-notice. If it is less then 72-hours-notice we will charge the full fee. Please also keep in mind that our office is closed on Fridays and Saturdays.
Q: Why does my puppy have to be under 5 months to attend puppy kindergarten?
A: From the moment you get your puppy until she is 4.5-months-old, she is in a crucial developmental phase known as Puppyhood. Around 4.5-months, your pup will become an adolescent. Adolescence brings on a slew of behavioral changes that require entirely different training lessons than the first five months. In fact, we recommend starting puppy school at 10 weeks!
Q: What type of training methods do you use?
A: At AGDT, we require all of our trainers to study every training method available. We believe that we should be familiar and experienced in archaic, traditional, modern, and cutting edge tools so that we can offer the most options to our clients when helping them to meet their goals. We focus on using the Least Invasive, Minimally Aversive training style necessary to help you and your dog succeed. That usually means reward-based training, games, fun, and laughter during training. We know that you got your dog to have fun with them, and we believe in doing everything we can to help you achieve that. We never, under any circumstances, use shock collars, choke collars, prong collars, or other devices designed to teach by using painful stimuli.
Q: If I have an aggressive dog can I still come to class?
A: No. If you have an aggressive dog you will not enjoy or benefit from a group class. You should enroll in Private Training.
Q: What should I bring to class?
A: Generally, the only two things we ask you to bring is your leash and treats broken into very small pieces. If something other then that is required we will let you know in advance.
Q: Can my family come to class too?
A: Yes! We love when families come to our classes! Very small children should be accompanied by another adult so that you can focus on training your dog during class.
Q: Where do you hold your classes?
A: We currently have 3 locations to host classes in. Dog Days of New York (2581 Broadway between W 97th and W 98th) The Culture Center (410 Columbus Ave btw 79th and 80th. Paws Country Club (301 W 113th Street 113th and Frederick Douglass)
Always check our website for current class locations because they vary.
Q: What is a free puppy social?
A: At AGDT we are extremely passionate about early puppy socialization, because we know how crucial it is to the well-being of your dog, so we host free puppy socialization groups around town. These are casual gatherings of puppies (under 5 months only!) and their humans monitored by an AGDT trainer to ensure safety and to give some important information about the proper way to socialize the pups. Bring your puppy, her collar, and some treats!
Q: What neighborhoods do you serve?
A: Our classes are on the west side, and we offer private training all over Manhattan.
For dogs who live outside our area, we are happy to schedule phone or online video chat sessions.
Q: What are the costs of classes and private training?
A: Rates vary, so please check the website or call us. Private Training generally runs around $150 per hour. Our group classes cost $355 for 5 week courses.
Q: How do I get my dog certified as a therapy dog?
A: If your dog is thoroughly socialized, unflappable, and very well behaved, you may want to take a therapy dog class to introduce them to this fantastic world of volunteer activities. We recommend that Pet Partners Therapy dog classes that are held at Dog Days of New York. Contact them for details.
Q: Where should I board my dog?
Q: What dog walking services dog you recommend?
A: Check out our places we love page here
Q: What will my puppy learn in puppy kindergarten?
A: The primary focus of Puppy Kindergarten is teaching your pup essential socialization with dogs, people, strange noises, handling, and all of the many things they will face throughout their lives. You will master important techniques needed to solve puppy biting and potty training issues, and you will be introduced to all the basics of raising a well-behaved pup. Sit, Down, Touch, Come, Stay, Leave it, Take it, Drop, leash training, and other fundamental skills are introduced and problem solving strategies for issues like jumping, pulling, barking, and hyperactivity are addressed.
Q: My dog pulls on leash. Do you recommend a particular harness or leash?
A: Our favorite leash is the The Freedom, No-Pull Harness. Click here.
Q: When and where do you hold workshops?
A: Please check the website or sign up for our news letter to receive this info. Generally, we hold a workshop every couple of months at one of our class location.
Q: What is a dog training apprentice?
A: A dog training apprentice is “in training” with our senior trainers. You may see them if they are shadowing one of our head trainers. If you are interested in joining our apprenticeship program, please send a resume and a letter explaining why you are interested in the program to firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: How do I know which class is best for my dog?
A: If you aren’t sure, give us a call and we will be happy to advise you! If you have a puppy under 5-months, Puppy Kindergarten is your best choice. If you have never taken a class with us before, and your puppy is over 5-months, you want Adolescent Dog Training. All of our other courses require one of these as a pre-requisite, except our workshops which address individual behavior problems (such as leash walking and jumping up).
Aggressive dogs and dogs who have issues with barking require private training before being enrolled in class.
Q: What kind of advanced dog training classes do you offer?
A: Our advanced classes are:
Puppy 2 (the next logical step after Puppy Kindergarten)
Doggy Games (fun, games, and competition to improve your training)
Real World Dog Training (Taking it outside, improving your training in real world situations)
Tricks and Freestyle (Fun tricks and dancing with your dog)
Check our website for details about upcoming dates!
Advanced classes require Puppy Kindergarten OR Adolescent Dog Training as a pre-requisite so you won’t feel lost.
Q: Why don't you offer board and train, and why can't I enroll in a pet sit and train if I'm a new client?
A: At AGDT, we only perform dog training services that we know will be EFFECTIVE for you and your dog. Sending your dog away to be trained (known as board and train) can sometimes offer decent results, but we have seen that most owners are disappointed with the results because they feel that it wasn't worth the financial investment. This isn't because board and train programs aren't run by great trainers. They sometimes are, but those lessons often fail to transfer to the home environment, because the dog is learning new behaviors out of context. Most dogs are extremely contextual learners. However, pet-sitting combined with training can often be very effective, because it takes place in the environment in which the dog is exhibiting the problem behavior. We only offer this to current clients, because we want to ensure that we are familiar with you, your dog, and your goals before asking you to invest in a massive training plan. Click here for more info on Pet Sit and Train
Q: Where will a private training session take place?
A: Private Training will take place where it is best to observe and work on the behavior problem.
In your home, in the park, on a walk etc.
Q: What is rolling enrollment and how does it work?
A: Rolling enrollment means that you are able to pick which day you want to start class. Once you join you must attend 5 consecutive classes. This only applies to Puppy Kindergarten, and you must confirm your enrollment with our admin team before showing up for class.
Q: How do I become an apprentice at Amanda Gagnon Dog Training?
A: We are always accepting applicants. Please e mail in a brief intro about yourself and a resume. We will reach out to start the interview process if we have room for a new apprentice.
Q: What are your hours of operation?
A: Our admin team is in the office to take phone calls and answer questions Monday through Friday from 10am - 5pm.
Q: What is an Intensive Training Package?
A: Sometimes it can be tough to find the time and energy for dog training when it conflicts with the important needs of your family, work, or personal life. Intensive Training Packages are a great option for people who need extra help to meet their training goals.
Click here for more info.