Spring fever? Join our Junior High Class or summer workshops!
BetCo May/June 2018 Newsletter

Hello Carla,

While you may be waiting hopefully for the ground to dry up, we have just the right activities for you and your dog! Brush up on your dog's manners with one of our behavior classes, check your dog's reliability in public at our Canine Good Citizen® - test or join our summer workshops listed below!

Our Doggy Daycare has been solidly busy this last winter, thanks to wonderful clients and our great staff! We're ready to hire an additional Doggy Daycare staff member for a few hours 1-2 times per week. If you're interested, please read the feature at the end and then send us your resume, including your physical address and age, to

Monthly Feature: at the end of this newsletter:
Doggy Daycare - playing with dogs?

Short overview of our upcoming events and classes (more details are further below):

Upcoming Events:

The Better Companion has added some special events again this year (by popular request) that you might want to sign up for and add to your calendar now:

- Canine Good Citizen® - test on Sunday, May 5,  
Shy Dog Workshop on Saturday, June 1,
- Feisty Fido Workshop on Saturday, June 8.

Read more about these events below!


All basic behavior classes are offered starting every month: Puppy 1 - Preschool, Puppy 2 - Kindergarten, Foundation Class and Grade School.

May Specials:

Grade School Class on Sundays starting May 19th has been added to the schedule, due to high demands! Our Puppy 2 - Kindergarten and Foundation Class graduates have been waiting for this!

Junior High School (JH) is for our Grade School graduates and starts Wednesday, May 8th. Besides practicing auto focus at heel, hind-end awareness, pivot and other valuable skills, JH specializes in heeling/ loose leash walking and the Stay in more distracting situations.

June Specials:

Treibball Practice could continue on with Claudia as the supervisor on Thursday evenings. Let us know if you're interested!

This month we also offer our summer workshops - check out our events below!

Preview for July/August:

Coming up are K9 Nose Work® and Agility classes!

All clickable links in this newsletter are in PURPLE.

Enjoy life with your better companion,


Border Collie Emma looking up to her owner. This focus and relationship has been a great foundation for Emma's agility career! Increase your dog's focus in our manners classes!
1) Upcoming events:

Canine Good Citizen® -Test:

Date: Sunday, May 5th
Time: 1:30 PM check-in, same day sign-up and briefing. Test starts immediately afterwards.

You and your dog will be tested in 10 everyday situations, e.g. loose leash walking through a crowd, being patted and examined by a stranger, meeting a strange dog and being left with a stranger while the owner leaves the room. You can read about all the test items on the AKC (American Kennel Club) web page. You and your dog have to pass all ten items in order to pass the test.

The evaluator is looking for a dog that is under the control of the owner, not too shy and not aggressive. This is not a formal obedience test requiring perfect heeling, but looking at the partnership between the dog and its handler. Multiple cues and talking to the dog are allowed at any time.

Sign-up: $25 regular fee.

Pre-register and save! Enter TEST7 when signing up before April 28th and receive a $5 discount!

Shy Dog Workshop:

This 4-hour workshop is offered once a year.

Date: Saturday, June 1, 2019
Time: 2 - 6 PM

Is your dog a candidate? Would you like your dog to warm up to strangers, or even family members, faster? Then this is for you! This workshop is for dogs that are timid and insecure around people, mostly strangers. They prefer to keep their distance from people and when asked to come closer, they get nervous and often rather want to go further away. Some will bark at a stranger that is too close. Dogs should be okay in a strange environment and not too stressed to eat treats when brought into the building. This workshop is also an excellent practice opportunity for shy dogs after a private lesson.

Is this workshop for you? In this workshop we'll explain and practice exercises that will help your dog to overcome their fear of people and talk about common mistakes that can make it worse. If you have a family member or friend who you'd like to be better accepted by your dog, this workshop is for you! Have a caretaker that needs to be able to handle your dog while you're gone? We often don't get to the dog actually being touched or patted by strangers, but being more curious and thinking more positive about strangers rather than being afraid of them. As you use these exercises at home, you'll see continuous improvement!

You can also decide to come without your dog and learn lots by observing all the other dog/handler teams. We'll have 6 working spots (1-2 handlers with their dogs) and 6 auditing spots (people without their dog). Auditing people will get to practice hands-on, being the strangers for the working dogs.

Feisty Fido Workshop:

This one-day workshop is offered once a year in the summer.

Date: Saturday, June 8, 2019
Time: 10 AM - 5 PM
(1/2-1 hour lunch break)

Is your dog a candidate? This workshop is for dogs that lunge and bark at other dogs when they see them, either out of fear or frustration. They can be "overly social", sound pretty vicious or be rather quiet about it, but they don't know how to behave socially correctly towards other dogs. Often they have specific dog friends they get along fine with, but might still bark at all, some or only specific other dogs. This workshop is also an excellent practice opportunity for reactive dogs after a private lesson.

Is this workshop for you? In this workshop we'll explain and practice exercises that will help your dog to cope better with the sight of other dogs. We won't allow direct contact between any dogs and they won't have an opportunity to play. We'll keep a good distance at all times to keep the exercises successful. If the situation is set up correctly, your dog should learn to focus more on you than on the other dog and accept the presence of another dog. We'll also practice what to do in emergency situations that would usually put your dog over threshold.

You can also decide to come without your dog and learn by observing the other dog/handler teams. We'll have
6 working spots (1 handler with their dog) and 6 auditing spots (people without their dog or extra people of the family)

2) Sports classes:

K9 Nose Work® (Sundays and Tuesdays):

Nose Work Practices on Tuesdays will run through all summer, with a couple short breaks. There'll be a break for the Sunday classes in May and June while the instructor's dogs (and some students' dogs) show their expertise in different competitions (Nose Work, Scent Work and Barn Hunt). Classes will start up again in July, including the high-in-demand K9 Nose Work®-Elements class!

1) Nose Work Practices are continuing throughout the summer, with possible field trips as well as practices at BetCo. Use credits from your Dog Sports punch card (found online under "Packages") for practices!

K9 NW® Beginners, K9 NW® Intro to Odor and K9 NW® Elements start again Sunday, July 7th, 2019.

Agility classes (Saturdays):

There'll be a break in June between Memorial Day and 4th of July. We'll start up again with classes and practices in July.

Agility classes and practices (all levels) start Saturday, July 13th.

Punch card options: Besides using our Sports Punch Cards for the Agility Practices, they can also be used for class students to repeat a level when you already know you'd miss two or more of the sessions. We'll always try to fill a class with full class payments first, then any spots still available (if any) can be used on a punch card basis. You can purchase a credit for a single 1-hr session or a punch card with three or six credits (for three or six 1-hr sessions). Your unused credits will be good for three years.

Other dog sports:

Rally (Obedience Sport) could be on the calendar on Wednesday evenings in July if there's enough interest. The pre-requisite for our Rally Class is our Junior High School, offered in May!  See more details below under Manners classes.

Junior High School starts Wednesday, May 8th, 2019.

Treibball: Claudia will continue Treibball Practice starting Thursday, June 13th, 2019.

3) Manners classes

Starting your dog:

Puppy 1 - Preschool: for
Puppies 2-5 months old; followed by Puppy 2 - Kindergarten.
Foundation Class: for dogs 6 months and older
The first
week of these two classes only is without your dog, to give the handler/owner a head start! All other classes start with the dog.
Package Deals: bundle two or more classes for a great discount! You learn valuable lessons and your dog gets the best possible start. Get your package first, then use the purchased class credit to sign up for a specific class.

Classes start every month, switching dates and times each month to accommodate your schedule as best we can! We offer Sunday afternoon, Monday morning, and Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evening classes.

Don't miss this link: Grade School

For all Puppy 2 - Kindergarten and Foundation Class graduates.

Grade School applies all the learned techniques from P1, P2 and FC to valuable exercises, improving your handling skills and your dog's behavior through more practice with controlled but increasing distractions. Your dog will amaze you!

This is the link that prepares you for all higher level classes! After Grade School you're ready to venture on into different obedience directions: Junior High (and then Rally College), CGC-Prep Class or CLASS-BA Course. You're also well prepared to take any sports class!

Grade School
can be repeated at any time for more practice, even if you have already taken higher level classes.

Classes start every month, switching between Sunday afternoons, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.  

Beyond the basics: Keep going with obedience and manners

Junior High School takes you into the specific obedience skills needed for the sport of Rally: Teach your dog to "Finish", "Front", "Swing" or "Get In", increase hind end awareness through some trick training. Also learn how to manage and conquer emergency situations out on your walks, like a loose dog coming towards you and practice manners while meeting other people with their dogs on leash.

Rally College is a fun sport - a way of combining heel work and bonding with your dog. You'll run a different Rally course every week while learning new exercises used in the obedience sport of Rally, all connected through a heeling pattern.

1) Junior High starts Wednesday, May 8th, 2019
2) Rally College could be offered in July - let us know if you're interested!

Here's what one of our clients had to say after taking Puppy 1 - Preschool:
"[The greatest benefit from this class is] to learn positive training at the moment of activity. [I liked most about the training program the] target training [and] puppy playtime. [The most interesting exercise of the whole course was] loose lead training, learning to distract instead of discipline. [I like] being able to recall the puppy with target training" Brian & Alicia with Reagan, Puppy 1 - Preschool

Read more testimonies HERE!

Monthly Feature:

Doggy Daycare - playing with dogs?   

To help/work at a Daycare for Dogs sounds like a ton of fun, but here's the truth: it's serious business! Dog owners are trusting us with their family member, their best friend, their adventure buddy. We have taken on a huge responsibility, making sure that
- the dogs (and humans around them) ARE safe (as safe as possible),
- the owners FEEL safe leaving their dogs with us
- the dogs FEEL safe and want to come back
- all dogs have fun without getting overly aroused

Additionally, we need to ensure that

- the dogs don't rehearse/ repeat any unwanted behaviors (eliminating inside, jumping up, barking, scratching at the door, playing rude, mounting ...). We want them to behave at least as well as at home if not better!

- the facility stays clean (cleaning up accidents, vacuuming, disinfecting the facility, wiping shelves, doors, chairs ...)

- other facility needs are met (laundry folded, seasonal decorations, restocking, ...)

- clients are taken care of (answering the phone and walk-ins; daycare and group class clients)

The job of a Doggy Daycare staff member at our facility is not to entertain and pet the dogs, but to SUPERVISE their actions. You'll often be in the middle of 10-12 dogs without touching them, but ready to call a dog off or gently intervene. Eventually you'll be the only person in the facility until the next shift arrives.

You'll need to be able to multi-task, having one eye and ear on the dogs while you're cleaning/ talking to a client/ restocking. You will often be the first person a new client talks to either in person or over the phone, and it might depend on you if the client will choose our services or not. While you may be petting one dog to keep them calm, you'll need to keep all other dogs under close watch. Maybe a dog ends up having diarrhea and you need to quickly get all dogs into kennels and outside so that you can clean up the mess.  

Can you deal with dog fights and blood? Even though we try hard to avoid these situations, daycare staff needs to be ready for this type of emergency. Blood can come from a lost tooth in a puppy, from a deep scratch during play or from a dog fight. Ears always bleed heavily, but that shouldn't freak you out. A potential dog fight or scuffle needs to be broken up as quickly as possible, before any harm is done or other dogs try to chime in.

All this didn't scare you away? Now you probably understand that the job as a doggy daycare assistant is a multi-functional job, that also includes being a cleaning and restocking person, a receptionist and a customer care specialist.

You'll need to not only have experience in dealing with multiple dogs, but also be reliable, have your own transportation, drive in all weather conditions and understand that although we're looking for a long-term commitment, this is not a full-time position as a means of supporting you fully, but rather a small additional income, working only 3-8 hours per week, unless you need to jump in because one of the other daycare supervisors is sick or needs off-time.

Please send us your resume, including your physical address and age, to and we'll call you to discuss the job position with you!
Enjoy the Journey of Dog Training!

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Orijen freeze-dried and Bixbi Pocket Trainers dog treats! 
The Better Companion, LLC, 1400 Regine Ave, Wasilla, AK 99654, United States

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