SINCE YOU ASKED…
First, please fill out the contact form here. When I receive that I will send you an email with a link to book your session(s). Once we have a date confirmed I will send you a couple of forms to fill out and a Zoom link for that first session. I ask that you return those forms to me at least 48 hours before our session.
If you haven’t decided on a training package before our initial session we will talk about that during the session. After each session you get a recap email. The email after our first session will include a link to book the rest of your sessions for the package.
I encourage everyone to book as many of their sessions as possible at once. I want to be sure that the time is saved on the calendar for you.
Every dog is different so I can’t give you a simple answer to that.
I have packages of sessions because changing behavior and having that change stick for the long term usually takes lots of practice. I wouldn’t be setting you up for success if I encouraged you to buy fewer sessions than you need in order to make progress with your goals and training knowledge.
That said, I don’t want you to spend time or money that you don’t need to. I promise that if I think that your goals can be met with a smaller package I will tell you.
Payments via Zelle do not incur any fees
If you need to pay via another method, let me know so we can make an arrangement.
If we are meeting in person for a follow up session that isn’t part of your package you can pay me in cash or make checks to Elizabeth Robinson.
I’m not always booked that far in advance but sometimes I am. The best thing for you to do is to get on the waitlist.
To be put on the waitlist, please confirm a time on my calendar that is available. Once we have that I will send you some documents to fill out. I generally ask that those documents be returned to me at least 48 hours in advance of your session. If you’d like to be put on the waiting list you should get those documents back to me ASAP and make a note in your email that you’d like to be put on the waiting list. As soon as I get your documents back I will put you on the list!
I have a cancellation policy for a couple of reasons.
When someone cancels a spot at the last minute it is less likely that I am able to book someone else into that time slot. While it’s a problem for me because this is how I make a living, it’s also a problem that a useful time slot wasn’t used. You booked your session in advance and I held it for you. Someone else probably wanted that time slot, too, and now no one’s dog is being helped.
Cancellation is required 48 hours before a scheduled virtual appointment or in person near my home. If I am traveling to your home, cancellation is required 72 hours before our appointment. A fee, up to the cost of one session, may be incurred if canceling after those deadlines.
At the discretion of the trainer exceptions may be made in the case of emergencies such as illness or inclement weather.
*The trainer reserves the right to change an appointment to a virtual session in the event of mild illness, weather, or other issues that might impact your training success.
First, please don’t do that.
Second, I understand that being careful with our money is a priority. The highest priority, though, is our health and the health of our community. While I do not have comorbidities and am fully vaccinated I do work with families who have members who are unable to be vaccinated or have vulnerable health. I am extra careful about COVID precautions to protect you, the rest of my community, and myself.
Please be honest with me about your health and I will be honest with you about mine. Email or text me as soon as possible and let’s talk about what we should do.
Ed & Legs learned how to relax together pretty quickly because they’d had plenty of practice relaxing on their own before they met.
WHAT DO WE DO IN SESSIONS?
In our first session it’s mostly talking. I ask you questions about the forms you’ve filled out and your dog’s behavior. We go over basic dog body language information and I teach you some of the basic training concepts we’ll use. I will lay out what you should practice before we meet again. In the next sessions I will teach you specific exercises to work on. I talk you through these exercises and demonstrate them either with videos or through my own training. Then I will ask you to practice and coach you in real time so that you feel confident enough to practice on your own between sessions.
First, we meet online. After that, it depends.
In our first session together I gather information from you about your home set up and your pup then introduce you to the training concepts we’ll use. When we do that virtually we’re all more relaxed and able to learn. I usually work on Zoom but am happy to switch to FaceTime if that’s easier for you.
After that first session we'll work together to decide what combination of virtual and in person sessions will be right for your training goals.
On Sundays, Mondays, and Thursdays I hold virtual sessions and in-person sessions happen near my home in Clinton Hill Brooklyn. On Tuesdays I have a limited number of session times available to travel to client neighborhoods. Please see here for the neighborhoods I serve.
Anyone who is going to be living and working with the dog is encouraged to attend training sessions. I love to work with your whole family, walkers, nannies, roommates, and anyone else who figures frequently into your dog’s life.
If we are working on specific behaviors that need us to pare down attendance we can decide that on a case by case basis.
Our first session is a lot of talking and theory. Some children (and adults) love this as they get to tell me a lot about their dog and the behaviors that are fun or not so fun for them. Some children are bored by it, which can make it more challenging for the adults to learn the information they need. If your children want to skip the initial session and join us when things get more active, that’s fine with me.
For all sessions please have at least 1 cup of treats cut up into pieces about half the size of your pinky nail. Smaller than that if your dog is under 20lbs. Ideally you’ll have up to 3 different kinds of treats so we can explore which foods your dog loves best.
It’s also a good idea to have a couple of chews or food puzzles available to occupy your dog when we need to talk. If you don’t have any food puzzles that’s ok. We’ll talk about that in our session.
For virtual sessions you should set yourself, your dog, and your device up in a comfortable well-lit space. When we’re ready to have you stand up and work with your dog you’ll need room to move around with your dog and a place to put your device that allows the camera to see both you and your dog while you work.
It’s not required but it’s a good idea to have a way to take notes. After our session I will send you a recap email with support materials but it’s good for you to take your own notes, too. Our brains learn better when we note the information that stands out for us.
For in person sessions please have your dog behind a gate, in a pen, or on a leash when I arrive. That will give us the space to say hello and get settled without worrying about anything that might happen with your pup. Yes, you should do this even if you are contacting me about how your dog acts around the front door or greets strangers. I trust you and don’t need to see the behavior you’re talking about in order to help you with it.
I emphasize dog body language in my training sessions. When you learn to “speak dog” by reading their body language we can discover something, maybe something really small, that your dog is doing well so that we can reinforce that with a treat. When you reinforce something you are likely to see more of it.
Once your dog understands that they are reliably reinforced for doing a couple of things they usually start to offer more behaviors to see what works. The more options we have to reinforce behaviors we like the better your dog’s behavior becomes.
Probably not. We use tiny pieces of food to reinforce the behavior you want to see your pup repeat. Our general rule is treats should be half the size of your pinky nail. Honestly, though, I often use smaller pieces. I do use a lot of them, though!
If weight is a serious health concern for your dog you can reduce the amount of food she gets at mealtime by approximately the amount of food she got during her training time. We may also look at non-food reinforcers like play or access to people, places, and things your dog loves.
Food, though, is usually the route to strong progress. It’s easy to deliver quickly and to use many, many times in a session so it’s our favorite thing for reinforcing the behavior we love.
You can and you should praise your dog often and lavishly. If that’s the only “payment” she’s getting for her hard work, though, your training may progress more slowly than if you pay her with food.
After each session you get a summary email with reminders about what we worked on and how we did it. If your dog needs us to remember specific things about the exercises in order for her to succeed I will include those reminders as well.
If you run across something that didn’t come up in our session and that keeps you from being able to practice you can email me with questions. I answer emails on Sun, Mon, Tue, & Thu.
If anything I’ve asked you to practice becomes dangerous to you or your dog please stop practicing immediately and get in touch with me.
I would be happy to, as long as you’re within a 15 minute walk of my home in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. For day training I require you to participate in 1 session with me and your dog for every 3 sessions where I work with your dog alone.
It’s as important that I train you as it is that I train your dog!
At this time I am not offering board and train services.
It’s good to remember that even if you send a dog for a boarding training experience they will not return to you perfectly behaved. Dog training is as much about training humans as it is about training dogs. Be sure that any trainer you work with:
• Spends time training you
• Is open and honest with you about what tools they will use with your dog and how you should use them
• Uses evidence-based, force free training methods
• Can answer the questions - “What will happen to my dog when they get something right?” and “What will happen to my dog when they get something wrong?”
• Makes no guarantees about being able to change your dog’s behavior
I can work with you to build your relationship with your dog and to teach you and your dog to communicate so that she will be as likely as any other member of your family to cooperate with you. Nobody is perfect, though, not dogs or cats or emus or people. Nobody can guarantee the behavior of another living being and it would be unethical of me to say I could.
Is Ed really relaxed or is he just pretending for the camera?
With virtual sessions I have worked with families all over the globe. I love to work virtually and find that it’s very effective. You can read my blog posts about what to expect from real time online coaching and if virtual training will work for you.
My initial client sessions are always virtual. That first session is centered around me gathering information from you about your home set up and your pup then introducing you to the training concepts we’ll use. When we do that virtually we’re all more comfortable.
After that we'll work together to decide what combination of virtual and in person sessions will be right for your training goals.On Sundays, Mondays, and Thursdays in-person sessions happen near my home in Clinton Hill Brooklyn. On Tuesdays I have a limited number of session times available to travel to client neighborhoods. Please see here for the neighborhoods I serve.
I already am! I do have some guidelines, though.
My initial sessions are virtual so I can learn more about your dog and develop a training plan. After that we'll work together to decide what combination of virtual and in person sessions will be right for your training goals.
On Sundays, Mondays, and Thursdays in-person sessions happen near my home in Clinton Hill Brooklyn. On Tuesdays I have a limited number of session times available to travel to client neighborhoods. Please see here for the neighborhoods I serve.
I have worked with a lot of dog breeds. Not every single one but a wide cross section of existing breeds.
My techniques use learning and behavior theory. These techniques work for every animal from dogs to raccoons to humans to emus and all the animals in between. How we apply the techniques will vary from individual to individual so that they can succeed.
The most important thing when training is to observe and gather data on the individual dog to find out what they need and what they are trying to achieve with their behavior. It can be useful to have knowledge of breed specific traits so we can look at your dog’s behavior to see if they are expressing a need for something they have been bred for. Every dog is different, though, so it’s important not to meet a dog with an idea that they will definitely behave exactly as described in their breed’s description.
If you already have video of the behavior, I am interested in viewing it.
If the behavior occurs and you’re able to safely get video, I am interested in viewing it.
I do not want you to entice your dog into performing the behavior and I really don’t want you to compromise anyone’s safety to show me the behavior.
We can work on the behavior without my seeing it. I will teach you about dog body language so you can become a better narrator of your dog’s responses. Together we will learn your individual dog’s body language so that we can see them getting excited or worried or upset before they perform the behavior we’re trying to change. We’re looking for the reason your dog is reacting so we can work from there.