Frequently Asked Questions

Do you offer a guarantee?

There are so many variables that come from a well-trained dog that it would be misleading for us to offer a 100% guarantee. While we strive to set every dog and owner up for success, we need equal pars of commitment from the owner as well.

How far will a trainer travel?

Currently Mannered Mutts Training is primarily servicing Bloomington and Ellettsville. We will also travel to Martinsville and Bedford for an additional fee and other counties that are within in the same distance. Outside of those areas, we will require clients to travel to us for their consultation and programs. Our trainers also offer virtual lessons if you are outside of our training radius and are happy to talk about it if you are interested in this!

I want to set up a consult! What are the next steps?

If you would like to set up a consult and meet one of our trainers, you would first need to fill out a contact form to let us know what your training goals are, if there is a specific program that you are interested in and your availability. Please allow up to 2-3 business days for our trainers to review your information and respond back.

Consults are typically an hour long and consult fee is $80. due at the time of booking. The consult is really helpful as it helps us learn about you and your dogs, set up a training plan, answer your questions, evaluate the behavior as well provide some guidance on things that you can start doing now.

What does an e-collar feel like?

An e-collar—short for electronic collar—is a wonderful communication tool for advancing and building on obedience as well as off leash reliability. High quality e-collars use TENS units, which in effect is a muscle stimulator. At a low to mid working level, it can feel like a pulsing or tingling sensation. A dog's working level is found by slowly introducing the collar by having them wear it until they are comfortable with it and then introducing low level stims until we find that the dog has a response to it. We are looking for them to notice the stimulation but not be worried about it or have any adverse reaction to it. These "working levels" can vary around lower and higher distractions, but can ultimately remain around the same.

Using this method is a great way to introduce the e-collar in a positive association and will not hurt your dog. This tool can easily be misused if not under the guidance of a professional dog trainer or can be introduced improperly. Our trainers will only use high quality e-collars under our specific list of brands (E-Collar Tech, Dogtra, Garmin). If interested in adding e collar training to your program, one of our trainers will go over their use in more detail during the consultation and have you wear the e-collar on your hand so you can feel the sensation for yourself and learn more about this versatile tool.

What is expected from me?

Throughout your program, our trainers will coach you on the training needed for your dog to have all the skills necessary. However consistency, owner commitment and follow through will be required from you. We will expect all clients to follow Indiana COVID mandates at the time of their programs, respecting and following through with their trainer directions without modification. In addition, we request that you stay in communication with our trainers and keeping or canceling your appointments in a timely manner. Whether you are doing private lesson or board and train, your trainer will make sure that you have all the information needed to keep up with training while at home. Private lessons clients will be expected to keep up with their homework in between their lessons in order to build on the training they learn while working with the trainer. Other programs will be expected to maintain and follow direction and ask for help if there is any issues that arise. Your follow through is imperative to the success of your dog's training.

What is the purpose of a prong collar?

A prong collar is an effective training tool to communicate on leash. The collar's design is made so pressure ie evenly distributed around the neck, rather than targeting one specific area. A prong collar is meant for quick short corrections in order to regain a dog's attention. We only recommend high quality prong collars (Herm Sprenger) as their design is the most reliable in safely regaining a dog's attention as well as keeping the integrity of the product.

What is your method of training?

We utilize what is called “balanced training” which involves the use of both reward-based training - using food lures and praise to help teach and reinforce behaviors and the use of redirection and corrections for behaviors we don't want. The word "corrections" can be off putting to some people as it isn't always clear as to what is meant by it. When we use the word "correction" we are simply describing a simple lead away from problem behaviors or a quick pop and release of leash followed by immediate guidance from the human to a better choice for the dog. Clear boundaries through use of positive and negative consequences create a well-balanced dog that understands the rules.

Before introducing corrections to commands and behaviors we start by positively shaping an obedience foundation and introducing the dog to leash pressure. We show them how to earn physical rewards and how to turn pressure on and off by yielding to leash pressure. This allows the dog to have the motivation to work for the rewards and perform the behaviors we want more consistently. We start by rewarding all the good choices but overtime move to a more variable reinforcement schedule. Likewise when the dog has an understanding of what is expected, we apply a correction for choosing to do the wrong behavior. All of this helps to create a well balanced dog.

What should I bring for my dog's board and train?

You should bring enough food for your dog's entire stay. You can also bring blankets, beds, toys that they can have in the kennel as long as they don't have destructive or chewing tendencies. You can also bring treats or any special food for them that you would want. If your dog is currently on any medication, you will want to bring that as well for the entire duration of their stay so we can make sure that remains consistent.

What vaccinations are required for my pet's training stay?

We require proof that the dog is up to date on Rabies (if 16 weeks or older), Distemper, Leptospirosis and Bordatella Vaccines.

Which kind of training tools do you use?

Tool choice will vary per dog and owner based on their needs and training goals. Every dog is different with unique needs and there is no "one size fits all". We want to make sure whatever tool we use is going to be the best fit for your dog. We use martingales, slip and prong collars, harnesses, high quality e-collars, Starmarks, muzzles, and others.

Which types of animals does Mannered Mutts Training, LLC train?

We have experienced staff and are able to take on a variety of temperaments, breeds, sizes, ages and behaviors. During your consultation, you will be able to express any issues, concerns and your training goals with the trainer and they will be able to find the right program for you and your dog!