Students will be paired with several dogs for the semester to provide a consistent interaction and be able to track the efficacy of the program.
- Weekly interaction with dogs focusing on four areas:
- Condition stock dog to the tasks asked of them during teaching labs
- Train dog to leash-walking and other simple commands (e.g., sit, stand, down)
- Enhance enrichment of stock dog by increased human contact and activity
- Promote behavioral modification and humane handling techniques
Students must attend large-group and hands-on orientation sessions that provide a framework for the Canine College objectives and positive reinforcement-based training approach, an overview of the regulatory environment, and an introduction to biosecurity and the health and safety issues associated with working with animals.
Each intern will be assigned a semester long project to accomplish alongside their mentor. These projects may serve as potential research opportunities. Project examples include:
- New data organization and analysis
- Objective: create a real time data display of dog and student interactions, progression, and behavior to be used to update members on canine college performance, as well as provide a foundation for overall program efficacy evaluation.
- Old data organization and analysis
- Objective: organize and analyze data from previous program years for key metrics of program efficacy, canine performance and adoptability, and student participation.
- Monthly newsletter
- Objective: establish a framework for club communications, university communications, and LAR communications regarding canine college progress and update key stakeholders at appropriate intervals throughout the semester.
- Open House
- Objective: create a display for open house that is centered on adopted research dogs and utilize LAR staff to communicate with owners about their adoption experience to create adoption testimonials with correlating photographs.
- Dog identification system
- Objective: create a PowerPoint presentation of canine college dogs with each slide containing a picture of the dog in question, their name, and a brief blurb to serve as a tool for dog identification. The blurb will contain historical training data, training motivators (pets, treats, praise), and current training state.
Each intern will also complete a case report on a dog of their choosing.
Each student will be responsible for creating a case report as a means to summarize their interactions with their dogs. Each student is assigned 5 dogs and thus has the ability to choose the dog they would like to summarize. On April 1st each student will prepare a short presentation about their case report.
Spring and Fall Semesters:
Interns are required to complete a minimum of one interaction per week. Each interaction is about 1.5 hours in length based on time to park, change into appropriate uniform, and time spent with dog. Canine College hours are 7-5 pm Monday-Friday and 1-3 pm Saturday-Sunday.