I am always asked about board and train and whether I recommend them ect (as Loki had one and was away for 8 weeks ), I'm not going to talk too much about lokis Specifically here , as for a business review as such im not sure how much I’m allowed to publically post about my experiences, however, you can always DM me on Instagram or email me in regards to how HIS Specific B&T went I'm always open honest and happy to answer questions
But for this blog, I'm reviewing the general concept of B&Ts and a more open review of not just our experience but also the experience of others too.
Manage your expectations
Before Loki embarked on his Bored and train I wrote out a clear list of lokis issues but highlighted the ones I wanted to work on most of all and the end goals that I wanted him/Us to achieve as a result I always managed my expectations and I wasn't expecting him to go away and come back a well balanced and happy dog that could be with other dogs and have all his issues resolved - it's not what I expected and it's not what I got, so if you do choose to go for a B & T then don't expect to see huge changes in complex behaviors. several others ( 5 total ) whom I have spoken too have been disappointed regarding there board and trains too noteing seeing minimal progress for the costs and lacking after care or support.
Check Qualifications & Licences to board
Check the people your boarding with are actually qualified and are legally allowed to board your dog
It doesn't matter if you run a boarding kennel or if you look after other people's dogs in your own home, from October 2018 UK law says you MUST have a license. The regulations apply to boarding kennels, boarding catteries, caring for other people's dogs in your own home, dog daycare, pet sales, and dog breeding.
- I do not doubt that you can have knowledge without being certified , and if you want to go for someone who isn’t qualified then that’s obviously your choice, but I’d feel nervous if doctor’s
didn’t have to be qualified and spend so long in med school - if someone avoids your question on qualifications … they likely don’t have any
Check there Training Style
I am in the Positive Reinforcement based training camp and do not like the thought of using aversive methods or tools when training Loki I'm not going to TELL you what to do but I do not train that way and do not want my dog to be handled in that way without me there or without my consent so for me, I would only want Loki to go to a Positive reinforcement / relationship-based trainer for any period so consider the way they teach dogs in there care and if its something you would be totally comfortable with
Expense & Be aware of hidden costs
You’ll be potentially hit with some hidden costs here and there, travel expenses, extra treats or food, or other misc costs I know of several people that were hit with hidden travel expenses upon the return of their dogs from B&T's the cost overall is a lot too Lokis was around £4,500 ( money which I for sure regret spending ) - mine tried to add extra travel after I prepaid £400 travel (several of the others then went for b&t were also asked for extra travel expenses)
Was it Worth it?
No, not for us, I feel like I could have better spent the £4,500 on many 1-2-1 sessions and had much more progress both with my capabilities and confidence in handling Loki and he would have had much more true progression as a result
A Vet can refer you to a qualified veterinary behaviorist if you are struggling and some pet insurance companies will even cover this cost ( insurance will only cover appropriately qualified behaviorists )
this is the route I'm currently taking with Loki
Do I recommend it?
If you are feeling overwhelmed and in a rut with your dog I do think some time away can be beneficial to your mental health and even your dogs if you find yourself losing your rag or feeling frustrated often, I really needed the break especially as lokis B&T fell at a difficult time for me ( splitting up selling my home and moving back to my parents ) it would have been a lot harder with Loki around and reacting to everything and everyone whilst trying to get my life sorted some elements of his behavior were improved and his confidence really grew for the duration he was there and he was noticeably more confident when he came home generally, however, his reactivity issues and anxiety issues around children and dogs were not too dissimilar to how he was before he left.
so I can't say whether I recommend it or not it depends on what you are wanting and what your expectations are if you want a break and some issues working on whilst you take some time for yourself and you have the funds, go for it. But if you want your problems fixed and your dog to be noticeably or dramatically improved upon their return then no, use the money for regular 1-2-1 training with a qualified behaviorist instead
speak to your vet be honest and open about your problem behaviors and push them for a behavior referral, then you know our going to be getting a certified professional.