Over the last few years, I’ve given numerous dog training demonstrations to groups as small as 6 and as large as 60. During that time I’ve figured out what works and what doesn’t and I’ve been asked by event organisers on every occasion about what’s needed hence this note…
To get the most out of your event and to keep me going barking mad as I experience the same pitfalls over and over, I’ve put together this list of requirements and suggestions. I ask that the person responsible for the event actively confirm that you’ll make these things happen. Here it is for your team:
Please consider the following guidelines for getting the most out of a session featuring dog training expert, Angela Watson and her Golden Retrievers.
1. Pawz4Thought believes in positive, reward based dog training. We travel by car, where our dogs have their own beds in a secure crate, with their own water and food supply, collar, lead, toys. All we need is a shady car parking space as near to the venue entrance as possible. We don’t travel by public transport.
2. For any group of more than 6 people a second facilitator will be required, who is brave enough and smart enough to call on people, cut people off, connect people and provoke them in a positive way.
3. Pawz4Thought sessions are participative, interactive, and involve people moving around. They also involve group activities which are sensory challenging. There needs to be enough space for these activities to take place safely (either indoors or outdoors). If indoors, please ensure the room is de-cluttered of superfluous equipment. If outdoors please ensure it’s a safe, secure environment.
4. Please check that the venue is dog friendly. Pawz4Thought has public liability insurance and the dogs have up to date injections. Tell the venue that they are highly trained ‘obedience dogs’ and are fully house trained. An outside toilet area for them should be agreed with the venue beforehand.
5. If indoors, the room will need to be set up with a semi-circle of chairs and no tables. We will not require power-point or a screen unless we specifically ask for it, but will require access to a power supply, a well lit room, flip chart stand, paper and pens.
6. Alas our dogs can’t be handled, trained, walked, or fed by members of the audience. Too much stimulation blows their mind. They stay with Angela or one of the Pawz4Thought team at all times. However they are very friendly and happy to be touched and stroked.
7. TIP: Giving a talk and ending with a Q & A session is tempting but not usually an effective way of getting the most out of Pawz4Thought. Instead, after a dog training demonstration, we get the audience to work together in small groups to formulate questions. Then have each group firing questions for around 20 minutes. The session will finish with a group activity, ending the session on an up.
8. TIP: Groups that schedule a break after a Pawz4Thought session are usually glad they did. You get that high energy buzz and you get conversation time as people consider what they have just learned.
9. TIP: It’s a good idea to dispense with tables and pack people in close together.
10.Feel free to take photos as you like and to post on social media. Pawz4Thought sessions are not available as a handout or slides.
11. Unless you have already worked it out, you don’t have permission to record and then re-sell or distribute a Pawz4Thought session.
12. If you’d like to connect with us before the event email is actually quicker than a skype call. Angela can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
13. Suggested Intro: ANGELA WATSON, has two passions – dog training and personal development – and is known for doing both in the same session. Angela’s contribution to the use of animals in leadership is featured in ILM Edge Magazine, and she is published in the International Journal of Clinical Leadership, and The Health Service Journal. She also contributed to the best selling book, Essential Career Transition Coaching Skills, by Caroline Talbott. She is an accomplished speaker on how dogs and the way we are with them can teach us much about ourselves and the way we live, love, parent, and lead, using demonstrations and anecdotal stories relating to her many years experience as a competitive dog obedience handler/ instructor, and her journey to Crufts.