Outdoor Adventure Class

Outdoor Adventure Class

Shayne practices a down-stay at a busy outdoor shopping mall!

Shayne practices a down-stay at a busy outdoor shopping mall!

Take your training to the next level and let’s practice outside!  SJC is just beginning the planning stages for a new intermediate and advanced level class.  This class is a little bit less “structured” than our Outward Hound series of classes and focuses more on working on skills in new environments rather than teaching foundations.   The first two classes will be more structured to teach some foundations and work on foundations but the remaining three classes will be more casual in nature with meet-ups and walks to work on various skills in the real world.

Weeks 1 and 2 we will meet in a park that is a somewhat low-distraction area. The first part of the class will be structured like a class–practicing, as a group, focus after exiting the car, attention, loose leash walking, sits, downs, and settle (mat optional).  The second part of the class, we will take a group walk around the park focusing on our loose leash walking skills and practicing group sits/down and using “life rewards” for nice walking.  Weeks 3-5 we will meet at various public locations around Pittsburgh and the North Hills area (probably Point State Park or the North Shore area by the Stadiums, potentially Squirrel Hill, South Side or Westview) and practice working in busier or more urban environments.  During each class, we will be practicing having the dogs settle while owners sit down together while on an adventure walk.  So most of the class we will be walking and moving and practicing our skills while on the the move and problem solving while on the go.  I envision the last class or two we will go to an outdoor cafe or an outdoor restaurant for part of the class and grab snacks/drinks while the dog practice settling and relaxing and their basic manners in a very distracting environment.

This class is a 5 week long class and will either be held on  Mon, Tues, or Thursday evening (6:30 ish start probably) or a Saturday AM class (probably 10:30 or 11am start to get us rolling before it gets too hot) or Saturday PM (6:30 ish start).   As people display their interest, we will firm up a time and a start date.

Here are some of the skills we will work on in the various environments:

  • Loose leash walking in the real world
  • Sits (and  sitting at intersections)
  • Down
  • Focus on handler
  • Default focus after exiting a vehicle
  • Using ‘life rewards’ in new environments
  • Standing in line at an outdoor restaurant with other dogs calmly
  • Settling (down on mat) while the handler socializes with other pet parents
  • Greeting people appropriately (if applicable) or learning to ignore people


This class will also be a great opportunity for handlers to socialize with other responsible dog owners.  This is a pretty casual class in that there will be lots of socializing, support, and individualized coaching for each dog and human team with respect to their needs.

Cost of the class is $90.  In addition to the class fee, each handler is responsible for his/her own snacks and drinks if/when we stop at restaurants or cafe’s to practice working in these very distracting environments (I will try to focus on locally owned businesses).

Since dogs will be out in public–in potentially busy environments–dogs absolutely must be comfortable with people and need to be able to function with other dogs around.  1 or 2 dog-reactive dogs who are well managed may be considered for the class but this is not a reactive dog class.  IF there is ample interest, we are happy to schedule two Outdoor Adventure classes a week.

If you are interested in getting on the Outdoor Adventure email list to be notified when we start planning and registerring for class, use the Contact Us page or send an email to successjustclicks@gmail.com


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