This course is designed primarily for volunteers of Retrieving Independence, a non-profit that partners with prisons and other volunteers to raise and train service dogs. This course can, however, be a valuable tool for anyone interested in raising a puppy for service work. This course will prepare the human handler to be a strong and consistent leader for his or her puppy, and will teach handlers how to ensure their designated puppy is successful in the Retrieving Independence program. At the end of this course, raisers and handlers will understand how to lay a solid training foundation for their puppies to become well developed service dogs. This course does not cover task work that more mature dogs require for service certifications.
Nikki Ivey is DogSpeak's founder, trainer and canine behavioral consultant. She has been training dogs and their owners for 20 years. Nikki owned and operated one of the first daycare facilities in the Nashville area. She has also written multiple books and guides to assist pet owners, business owners and and their staff, and rescue organizations.