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Games based learning has been scientifically proven to boost engagement of the learner in their education. It can take up to 400 repitions to learn a new skill, but when it is done through play it only takes 10-12 repitions! In this case, your dog is just as excited to train as you are. Games based learning better prepares your dog for real life situations by practicing the skills needed to live peacefully in the lifestyle you give them. When your dog has fun working with you this also increases your value over the environment to them. When your dog desires to interact with you and you've grown their mindset to align with the choices you wish they would make in every day scenarios, then the bond you share is truly special. Not only will your dog enjoy "training sessions" but you will never view it as a daunting task that has to be done. Games based learning is great for any age, size, breed and temperament of dog and trainer. Play a game today, see results tomorrow!


"Stephanie was terrific! She is passionate about training dogs and extremely patient. She listened to our concerns and approached the training through games. Our dog was receptive to the games and we could tell she enjoyed the approach. We saw positivie changes within a few days after the training. Stephanie shared videos that we could refer back to as we continued to work on based on our needs. The training sessions have been a positive experience and Stephanie is very accommodating and flexible." 

-Mehrak, Phoebe's mom

What CONCEPTS are learned through

Games Based Training?


A postive outlook when faced with new or novel circumstances or meetings. Your dog not fearing first encounters with new people, dogs, or objects. 


The feeling that one is prepared to handle the situation they find themselves. Your dog walking into a new location with ease and calmness. 


A desire to stay close to an area. Your dog staying within a bubble around you instead of running off. 

Disengagement/ Engagement

The ability to look away or leave an object of interest. Your dog choosing to recall away from the squirel and come towards you


To keep one's attention on a single task. Your dog keeping their eyes on you for instruction.  


To approach situations with ease and relaxed energy. Your dog choosing to rest on a bed instead of barking out the window to people passing by. 

Energy Up, Energy Down- Dimmer Switch Affect

To energize and calm down in appropriate timing to the stimulus. Your dog getting excited at the sight of a squirrel, but calming down when it runs away and is out of sight. 

Impulse Control

The ability to stop and think to consider alternative options before reacting. Your dog does not bust through the front door when you leave for a walk. 


Determination to not let obstacles keep one from accomplishing their goal. Your dog searching for you when called back even if they can not see you initially. 

Tolerance of Frustration

To not give up when circumstances increase in difficulty. Elder dogs not being upset that they can not perform tasks as easily if they are sore, less mobile or vision impaired. 


Clear space for one to rest. Your dog resting on a bed while you cook dinner instead of counter surfing or under your feet looking for freebies. 

Life Hacks

Practices that one incorporates into their lifestyles and home to help set their dog up for an optimal learning environment. See details below. 

What are the LIFE HACKS?

Gated Community

The use of pet/baby gates to secure pets in or out of select areas. Sometimes our dogs cannot be fully supervised, so a gate can keep them away from spaces they can become destructive in. 

Ditch the Bowl

Dogs work for their daily food amount through training games and activities instead of in a bowl. This increases the value of working with you over a dish. Water bowls are the exception here. 


Having beds, rooms, chairs, kennels to create a safe space for your dog to rest. They can vary per household. Some people do not want pets on the sofa, so a bed or kennel is an appropriate place to teach your dog to relax instead. 

Ditch the Routine

Breaking the sequence of events to reduce predictability and anxiety in your dog while boosting engagement. Putting on the leash doesn't always dictate a walk is happening, car rides that don't actually end at a destination, not having a set meal time so your dog doesn't bark at you 5 minutes before 6pm, etc.

Passive Calming Activities

The use of Kongs, licky mats, bones, stuffed chews, snuffle toys, scatter feeding, cardboard boxes. These give your dog an activity of sniffing, hunting, eating slowly, shredding, chewing, licking and natural habits that promote calmness. 

Presence Doesn't Mean Access

Having your dog spend time independent of you even when you are home. This allows you to come home and have your dog remain calm while you get settled in. Your dog also understands that just because guests are over that they do not need to get over excited.  

Cooperative Care

Desensitizing your dog to touch and appliances. This prepares them for appointments at the vet or groomers. Does your dog hate baths, nails trimmed, going in the car, getting in their carrier, the brush, putting their collar on, wearing coats, etc? Some dogs have a fear of stepping on the scale (don't we all haha!) or raised tables at the vet/ groomers. Imagine your dog giving you its paw to pull out a sticker or not biting the hairbrush. 

Muzzle Training

Some dogs have a habit of being nippy when over excited, some will eat anything they find on the ground and some dogs can bite when feeling like they need to give correction to others. Having your dog wear a muzzle happily helps reduce these habits and promotes safety while training. 

The Bucket

How full or empty is your dog's mental bucket? It usually takes 72 hours for a dog to deescalte from an exciting or traumatizing event. We recommend allowing your dog's body and brain to decompress. Yes, even if they had a blast at the beach. There are many games to play increase their bucket size, how large of a drain it has and manage what fills it to decrease the opportunity to overflow.  

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