Skip to content
Home » One to One Appointments

One to One Appointments

Knowing what to do and watching behaviour improve boosts confidence- and takes the stress out of daily life.

An hour of  one to one appointment: assessment, training and advice is £75 (for an hour; £35 for a half hour session)

One to one appointments are tailored to fit individual needs.

Whether that be for a reactive dog, sorting out behaviour issues, assistance training for support dogs, or to make sure a new puppy starts off on the right paw- our one to one appointments will help. We use kind, effective methods based on behavioural study research. Encouraging the dog to use flight instincts (for example) and/ or helping people recognise signals and body language. We show what to do so that everyone’s confident in any situation.

We may suggest an hour or half hour session. Timing is seriously considered, especially when we’re dealing with emotions. We want them to be able to listen and not be overwhelmed. Dogs, like us, get tired when they’ve concentrated. Most adult dogs will and run out of steam in about 40 minutes, although it’s sooner with puppies.

Where do we hold the one to one appointments?

Unfortunately we have to limit appointments to Northampton town. Sue can’t drive anymore since she hurt her ankle, she doesn’t have the fine control needed to safely operate the pedals. Busses are normally very good, however.

  • If we need to assess behaviour outside,  we’ll go to the park. The Racecourse is nearby our house and it has the (fenced off) dog area (that’s free for any dog to use anytime).
  • Else we’ll come to you-  so it’s familiar and comfortable for the new dog. It’s important that we can assess behaviour in the place it normally happens.

Once an appointment is made, I like to get people to make notes or their phone or leave a pen and paper out. If they think of something they can jot it down. We basically do whatever you think will help.

Our support system

one-to-one appointments infographic

Our one to one appointments include after care and support. We have fact sheets for every task we can think of so each step is noted down and easy. It’s nice to have a “pupdate” phone call a week after the session in order to ensure things are progressing as planned. (Although once under our wing, people are encouraged to contact us when they need).

The most frequently asked question (after an appointment) is whether we can train children, mothers-in-law, husbands or wives… I wish!

One to one appointments are (usually) made for 3 reasons:

 * 1) Behaviour troubleshooting                       

one-to-one appointments eg of dog diggingWe can help with anything! It’s often things like barking and/ or separation anxiety. Or pulling on the lead, destructive behaviour in the house, ignoring their family and not listening in the park. After assessment, we’ll show you what to do, explain the science/ reasoning behind it and (very importantly) we practise so that the dog also understands and we see some improvement

When looking at behaviour, during an appointment we listen, watch, assess and:

  • teach people what to do so they feel confident whatever comes their way. 
  • train dogs so that they can communicate their wishes politely, handle their emotions, think and make good decisions.

Some exercises will directly work on the issues at hand. This includes things like learning variations of “leave” if a dog chases squirrels and/ or birds, or if they eat edible rubbish in the park. Other exercises help with self control and patience and work in the background for example the “Listening While Excited” game. 

As you book your one to one appointments, we’ll say what to expect

During the sessions we like to practise what we preach. We prefer to work hands- on, explaining the behavioural science behind it as we go. 

Working with the dog and making sure things are improving speaks louder than anything we could say

It’s sometimes good to make plans of action. For example “if this happens, do that” sort of stuff. This makes sure that everyone knows how to handle different situations easily and appropriately. We explain how to recognise and avoid problem moments and practise ways that encourages nice behaviour.

When the dog sees that the (scientifically proven) methods work, things start to really improve.

Our goal is that people can be confident and can enjoy life more easily with a more contented dog.

Reactive dog rehab is with both trainers and one of our dogs (if the trigger is a dog). Our dogs are well trained and calm. We hold reactive dog training on “neutral turf”- the Racecourse’s fenced off dog area. If it’s busy, we find a quiet spot. We’ve been studying and training for many years and we’ve helped to cure reactivity in hundreds of dogs. So very proud of them all!

Reactivity: Aims

reactive dog training, eg of a "calming signal" indicating discomfortReactive dog training works as we set them up to get it right, learning how to make friends and gain social confidence. This helps them realise others aren’t such a big deal and in turn, that reduces reactivity. Science says it is a) the kindest method and also b) the technique most likely to succeed. We like to work at the edge of their comfort zone, being careful they don’t get overwhelmed. Lots of new things going on will effect their ability to pay attention, so we’ve carefully considered the length of the appointment. Half an hour is a good time to make the best of their concentration, before it gets too much. We’ll show you how to encourage happy, calm interactions without it being overwhelming, manage emotions and ultimately stop the reactivity. The technique is very easy to do but has a shed load of science behind it.

A few years ago I was wandering around Crufts, with my “Affinity dog training” hoodie on. Behind me, someone says “Oh look, Affinity- they’re the difficult dog people”.  Thinking “wow, I’m UK famous”, I turned round to chat. Turns out they were from Wellingborough!

2) New Dog Master class

For the new puppy or new rescue: beginner training, tips and advice to settle in a new dog and start off on the right foot. Including come here, walk nicely, leave, teething, toilet training- how to establish easy routines (so family life is less stressful). We can obviously add behavioural stuff like what to do about fears and frights. pulling the lead, responding and focusing, jumping up… and/ or anything else.

* 3) Assistance training

To aid the disabled and make daily life easier. Examples include things like “pick that up”, opening / shutting doors, helping with daily tasks (like put washing in the machine) and medical alerts. Whatever you think will help. This is Sue’s area of interest, having a disability herself.

General points to bear in mind:

We expect, when we’re changing routines and behaviour, that some bad habits inevitably get worse before they get better. I will explain if this is the case. It’s because the dog is confused about changes and the penny hasn’t yet dropped. Please click our dog training theory/ methods page for more info on  these extinction/ exhaustion drives.

By the end of our time together you should have the answers you need and essentially see some improvement. If the behaviour takes more time, we make sure you know what to do. We give people the necessary tools to help the dog understand while we wait for the penny to drop. By the end we hope that people should know what to do in every different related circumstance that we can (all) think of. We’ll also have practised the techniques so that things are well on the way.

One to one appointments aftercare:

People are welcome to get hold of us any time they need. I also like a ring or text a week after our one to one appointment. Please “pupdate” us- good and bad. Especially if things go backwards. And especially if we didn’t warn you that’s to be expected. We will do what we can and genuinely want to be helpful and fair.

 For the the toughest of problems, £200 for 3 sessions.

After the session, please feel free to call or text if anything slips your mind. I can be a lot of info to take in at once. The infographics help, I’m told.

Dogs learn by association and repetition. They learn much quicker if they’re enjoying themselves, so we  use fun exercises that also teach.

A bonus is this training stimulates the dog’s brain which is tiring, helping to keep them out of mischief. We find that in these sessions, as their problems disappear, people begin to be less stressed. It’s great to watch people start to relax and have fun with their dogs again. Many find life easier and they enjoy themselves so much they wish to continue and apply to join one of our training classes.

We offer a £5 discount to anyone booking classes after a one to one appointment.

SAM

Here at Affinity we have many years of experience in canine behaviour and are proud of our many happy clients, their dogs and our reputation for our down to earth approach.

I’d love to have a magic wand or formula which could fix any problem and situation immediately! We do have plenty of effective, simple and practical answers however, and hints, tips and hacks which are appropriate, kind and fun. Sue has two Cambridge degrees and is also qualified with the ADTB to teach and assess to gold level.

We’re self-confessed dog nerds. Studying didn’t finish with exams- we are constantly researching.

Although our appointments are limited, we do try to arrange them for a time easiest for you. If you have a day and time that’s convenient, please say. Although do bear in mind we have classes on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Please ring us with any questions or queries you may have: 0751 976 2411 our contact page is here

What’s going to happen in the one to one appointment? Our goals:

one to one- example of play
Assess

Learning about the people’s concerns and goals and the dog’s behaviour and motivations. Working out solutions and considering what techniques to use. What will solve the issues most efficiently and easily? Is it beneficial to both people and dogs?

Techniques

Making sure everyone understands what to do and the reasoning behind it. Demonstrate and explain as clearly as possible.

Practise

… makes perfect! When the people understand, it’s their turn. Make sure everyone is starting to feel more confident while the dog learns at a comfortable rate. Sometimes it can take time and things may even need to get worse as the the dog thinks and begins to understand. Help them work it out by being clear and consistent.

Plans

Consider as many potentially difficult moments/ things that may happen. Work out a clear and easy plan of what to do for each one. (How to safely and calmly deal with a blind corner and a reactive dog, for example).

It’s sensible to have at least two sessions: one to assess and offer solutions; others about a week later to check things are going right and iron out any issues.

Sue’s first book on Amazon in Kindle, paperback and hardback. Link here

Top