What to Expect from Board and Train Dog Programs

What to expect from board and train program offered by Proven K9 Training? We’re breaking down the benefits!

When you send your dog to a board and train program, you can expect them to receive intensive, immersive training from experienced professionals. The trainers will work with your dog daily to build obedience skills, address behavior issues, and establish good habits.

However, it’s important to have realistic expectations about what board and train can and cannot achieve for your dog in a relatively short period of time.

Key Takeaways:

What Happens During Board and Train?

what to expect from board and train dog programs

During a typical board and train program, your dog will stay at the training facility full-time for a period of 2-4 weeks. The professional trainers will work with your pup for multiple sessions per day on skills like:

  • Basic obedience commands (sit, down, stay, come, heel)
  • Leash manners (no pulling)
  • Polite greetings (no jumping)
  • Crate training
  • Potty training
  • Socialization with people and other dogs

The immersive nature of board and train allows your dog to focus on learning without the distractions and inconsistencies of a home environment. Trainers use positive reinforcement techniques to encourage your dog and build their confidence.

Sample Board and Train Schedule

To give you an idea of what your dog’s daily routine might look like, here is an example schedule:

7:00amPotty break
8:30amTraining session
10:00amGroup play time
1:00pmPotty break
2:00pmTraining session
4:00pmRest time
6:00pmTraining session
8:00pmPotty break

Of course, the exact schedule will vary depending on the program. But this gives you a general sense of how your dog’s time will be structured around training, meals, play, and rest.

Setting Realistic Expectations

what to expect from board and train dog programs

While board and train can achieve significant results, it’s crucial to have realistic expectations. Many owners expect their dog to come home completely trained and “fixed.” But board and train is not a magic solution.

What Board and Train Can Achieve

Here are some reasonable results to expect from a high-quality board and train program:

  • Your dog will learn basic obedience commands
  • Leash pulling and jumping will be reduced
  • Potty accidents will decrease
  • Problem behaviors will improve
  • Your dog will be more focused and manageable

With dedicated training, you can expect to see clear progress in your dog’s skills and manners after board and train. Your dog will have a strong foundation to build on.

What Board and Train Can’t Do

However, board and train has limitations. Some things you should not expect:

  • Completely eliminating problem behaviors – Behavior issues take time and consistency to resolve. Board and train will improve problems like anxiety or aggression, but won’t make them disappear right away.
  • “Perfect” obedience – Dogs aren’t robots. Your dog may perform commands beautifully at the training facility, but they will still make mistakes, get distracted, and have stubborn moments at home.
  • A fully trained dog – Training has no real end point. It’s an ongoing, lifelong process. Board and train gives you a great start, but it’s not the end of your training journey.
  • Training the owner – Most of the training time is focused on the dog. While you will likely get a session or two with the trainer at the end, don’t expect extensive coaching on handling your dog. Further training will be needed.

So while board and train offers major benefits, it’s important to be realistic. It’s an intensive head start, not an instant solution.

Here are some data-driven facts and stats about board-and-train programs for dogs:

  • Cost: The average cost of a board-and-train program ranges from $1,000 to $3,000 or more, depending on the length of the program and the training methods used. (PetMD)
  • Duration: Most board-and-train programs last from 2 to 12 weeks, with some offering shorter or longer stays based on the dog’s needs. (AKC)
  • Training Methods: Board-and-train programs use various training methods, including positive reinforcement, clicker training, and traditional methods like leash corrections. (Dogster)
  • Behavioral Improvements: Dogs in board-and-train programs can show significant improvements in behaviors such as house training, leash walking, and socialization. (PetMD)
  • Success Rates: Success rates for board-and-train programs vary, but many trainers report high success rates, with up to 90% of dogs showing significant improvements. (AKC)

Maintaining Training After Board and Train

what to expect from board and train dog programs

After board and train, the work is not over. It’s critical that you maintain your dog’s training to make the results last. Here’s how:

  1. Attend the handoff session – When you pick up your dog, pay close attention to the trainer’s instructions. Ask questions and take notes.
  2. Be consistent – Use the same commands, praise, and corrections you learned from the trainer. Mixed messages will confuse your dog.
  3. Practice daily – Your dog needs to keep practicing their skills in order for them to stick. Aim for at least 15 minutes of training a day.
  4. Slowly add distractions – Help your dog generalize their training by gradually making it harder. Practice in new locations with more distractions.
  5. Enroll in follow-up classes – After board and train, sign up for group obedience classes or private lessons so you and your dog can keep progressing under the guidance of a trainer.

Cost of Board and Train

An illustration of a woman volunteer at a dog shelter, kneeling on the floor and feeding treats to two dogs from a container, while other dogs are in their cages nearby in the shelter facility.

Board and train programs are an investment. Prices vary, but most programs cost between $2500-$5000 for a 2-4 week program. Some may be cheaper, but be cautious about programs that seem too low-priced. High-quality training, care, and facilities warrant the higher price tag.

Consider the cost compared to alternatives:

  • Private lessons: $150-$250 per 1 hour session, with at least 5-6 sessions needed to see results
  • Group classes: $200-$400 for 6-8 weeks of 1 hour sessions
  • Day training: $500-$1000 per week for 2-4 weeks

So while board and train is a large upfront cost, it can be more cost-effective than other training options. And for busy owners who want fast results, it’s often worth the investment.

Choosing a Board and Train Program

Not all board and train programs are created equal. To find the right fit for your dog, consider:

  • Trainer credentials – Look for certified trainers with experience, not just enthusiasts. Ask about their education and professional memberships.
  • Training methods – Ensure they use modern, science-based techniques grounded in positive reinforcement. Avoid programs that rely on punishment, fear or pain.
  • Environment – Tour the facility to make sure it’s clean, safe and comfortable. There should be ample space for training and play.
  • Supervision – Confirm that your dog will be under the supervision of staff 24/7, not left unattended for long periods.
  • References – Ask for references from past clients. A reputable trainer will gladly connect you with other owners.
  • Ongoing support – Check that the trainer will provide you with detailed instructions and offer follow-up support via phone or email after the program ends.

Thoroughly vetting the program ensures you’re setting up your dog for a positive, successful board and train experience.


Board and train can be an excellent option for busy dog owners who want to see fast improvements in their dog’s behavior and obedience skills. Sending your dog to a professional training program allows them to build a foundation of good habits and manners.

However, it’s essential to have realistic expectations. Board and train requires ongoing commitment from the owner to maintain the results. No training program is a quick fix or a replacement for lifelong training. But if you choose a reputable program and follow through with the trainer’s instructions, board and train can give you and your dog a strong start to a well-behaved life together.

Contact us to start your board and train program for your pup! We have tons of satisfied clients to proved our expertise!

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