When I saw the opportunity to give Ines Gaschot's new Leash Aggression Classroom a try, in exchange for a review, I knew I had to participate. My career as a dog trainer started in a small city where there were hardly any options for me in regards to dog training. The ability to work with a trainer virtually would have been a great asset to have at the time. I have had a few months to play around on the Leash Aggression Classroom website and have gotten a feel for what Ines is hoping to accomplish with this program.
Leash Aggression Classroom
Trainer: Ines Gaschot
Price: $150 for a 3 month enrollment
The Leash Aggression Classroom is broken down into three sessions where she specifically goes over the materials you will need and the exercises to work on. Each exercise is broken down and given very specific instructions so that the student can obtain the most information from it. Videos and games accompany some exercises to make them more clear. Each session builds on the last, until you get an end result that will help your dog work through their reactivity problems. Like all good training, these exercises require the owner's dedication and are not a cover up to make your dog look like they are fixed. After each session, the students must submit a video that Ines will constructively critique to help her students out. Once Ines okays the video, they can move on to the next session.
The first plus I give the Leash Aggression Classroom is that they utilize all force free training exercises. It is very important to gain your dog's trust with force free exercises so that you can grow together during this journey. The exercises Leash Aggression Classroom utilize are broken down very well and explained in a way that a novice can understand them. Ines is always amazing at explaining things to novices who just do not have experience with dog training. This is no exception. While I may not teach the same exact exercises she uses to combat reactivity, I do believe that her exercises will be successful in helping teams curb reactivity. However, it is important to remember that each dog is different, and one set of exercises may not work for every dog.
The website layout for Leash Aggression Classroom is clean and simple. Everything is explained well, so students should not feel overwhelmed by information or feel like they can't find their way around. Offered to the students are a trainer directory, a site dictionary, blog, podcasts, videos, and a member area forum. These are excellent resources to have when working on reactivity. Ines also allows her students to pick a 'track' to follow depending on how much time they have to commit to training. I think this is an excellent idea because not everyone has the same amount of time to dedicate to reactivity training. Ines' 'tracks' permit students to spread the training up to six months, or tackle it as soon as possible.
I think Leash Aggression Classroom can also be a great resource for other trainers, and Ines agrees. She is starting a program that allows other trainers to offer this site to their current students. If you are working alongside a trainer, you can pay a reduced fee and get access to the sessions, without needing to submit videos. This lessens the burden on trainers, because they don't have to worry so much about giving the students homework, and it also offers the students another resource of information on reactivity.
In the end, I don't think there is any replacement for physically working with a qualified trainer, as they can give immediate feedback and possibly catch something a video could not. However, for those who are not lucky enough to have a qualified trainer nearby, or need some extra support, I definitely think Leash Aggression Classroom is an excellent asset to those in need. Ines has limited the amount of students she takes on to 35 per month. I have a feeling she may eventually need to take on another trainer to admit more students if and when Leash Aggression Classroom catches on. :)
Monica Callahan BS KPA-CTP is the owner of Anything's Possible LLC in North Olmsted, OH. She graduated from The University of Findlay in 2011, double majoring in Pre-Veterinary Medicine and Biology. She also has a minor in Chemistry. Monica went on to attend Karen Pryor Academy for Animal Training & Behavior, and graduated with distinction in January 2012. That is when she decided to open Anything's Possible LLC.
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