In August 2021, Atlas Assistance Dogs presented the webinar "Train the Person in Front of You: Make Your Training Accessible."
FDSA has purchased the webinar recording from its presenters and made it free for the dog training community.

Webinar Description:

We know to train the dog in front of us, but what about the person? Our human clients, like their pets, bring a variety of abilities and skills to the table. In your work with the human end of the leash, have you considered:

  • How you would adjust your training plans and lessons to the needs of people with disabilities?
  • How you could teach a dog to lie down when you can’t get on the floor to lure or when a clicker is too difficult to use?
  • How you might coach someone in a wheelchair on how to potty train their puppy?
  • How you would coach a client who doesn’t have use of their hands and can’t hold a leash?
  • How we can make it so that everyone can train?

This pre-recorded webinar aims to answer the question of how dog trainers can improve accessibility and accommodations for everyone — be they pet dog owners, sports enthusiasts or service dog handlers. We begin by diving into different types of disabilities and medical conditions that you may encounter as a trainer and appropriate etiquette when interacting with people with disabilities. We explore accommodations, action plans, and tools for adaptive training to have in mind. Through exercises and scenarios, you will develop skills to help you work with people with a variety of accessibility needs in creative and innovative ways. The accessibility team at Atlas Assistance Dogs® will help you learn how to meet a client where they are, recognize what a non-disabled trainer may take for granted, and discover how to use positive reinforcement in ways you haven’t considered. With some creativity and an open mind, we can create a more inclusive community, and support people with disabilities as they train their dogs!


Click here to download a PDF of the Slides | Click here to download a PDF of the Transcript