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Foundation Programme

Foundation Programme Classes

Cowichan Canine Behaviour & Training - Foundation Programme from Cowichan Canine on Vimeo.



As a Cowichan Canine Foundation Student, you pick your own class times and YOU CAN COME TO CLASS AS OFTEN AS YOU WANT for a MAXIMUM of 10 weeks!

Classes are offered most days of the week. For details, please see our online schedule. Our classes are held at our Training Centre at #106-3501 Chaster Road in Duncan. Click HERE for a map.


Just come to the next available Orientation Class (CLICK HERE for orientation class schedule). This is your first, compulsory, class of the Foundation Programme. It is a 2hr class WITHOUT dogs.


Before attending orientation, please pre-register either online (CLICK HERE), in person, or via email (, snail-mail or fax (778-455-1986) with the following:

Registration form (click to download)
- Your dog's vaccination record
- Payment (Visa, MC, Amex, Discovery, cheque or cash)
             or you can pay through our Online Shop

If registering multiple dogs from the same household at the same time, receive 10% off your additional dog's registration fee.


All our classes take place at our Training Centre at #106 - 5301 Chaster Road in Duncan.


Once you have attended the Orientation class, you can pick and choose your own class times from the schedule at your convenience. YOU CAN COME TO CLASS AS MANY TIMES A WEEK AS YOU WANT for UP TO 10 weeks. In fact, we encourage you to come to class AT LEAST twice a week, if you can. You pay the same price, however many (or few) times you come to class.

Even though we’re working within a class format, we will spend a lot of time in class coaching you and your dog through the programme on an individual basis – our curriculum is in fact based on individual coaching.

Our Instructor:Student ratio is 1:4.

After you have attended the Orientation class, the Foundation Programme gives you a MAXIMUM of 10 weeks during which you can attend as many Foundation classes as you wish each week.

Your Student Pass is valid for a MAXIMUM of 10 active weeks from the date you attend the first Foundation class with your dog and it expires after the first occurrence of either:
- 10 active weeks, or
- 16 calendar weeks in all (inc time off), or
- on the day you graduate with 100% of the behaviour levels signed off.

If you need to take a hiatus during this period for health or other reasons, please report your absence in advance, and we will put your attendance on hold, but you need to complete the programme within FOUR months from your start date. Your 10 weeks will be extended automatically if the school is closed (such as for holidays or snow days).

In the unlikely event that you find that you need more than 10 weeks to complete the course, top-ups of one or several weeks are available for purchase.

You WILL need to practice at home in between classes – sorry, there are no “miracle cures”. THE GOOD NEWS is that, because of the positive training methods that we use, you only need to practice on average 10-15 minutes a day!

Fact: You can expect that your dog will become a training addict!

As you progress through the course, you will receive a full set of training sheets, which include complete, step-by-step instructions for all the behaviours that are included in the course.

CURRICULUM: The Foundation Programme is aimed at dogs from 17 weeks and older. It teaches the basic skills that all dogs and owners need, whether the dog is “just a pet” or aiming for a competitive dog sports career. If you take the time to work with your dog at home for – say on average – 10-15 mins a day, you are likely to walk away from the Foundation Programme with a happy and obedient dog that you will be proud to take out in public, and you will also have gained a basic understanding of how to continue to teach your dog most basic skills and tricks. Our Foundation Programme is based on the curriculum developed by the Karen Pryor Academy.

FAST-TRACK STUDENTS: Students who graduate very early from the Foundation Programme may transfer credit to General Classes, if they meet the following strict criteria:

- Complete 23 of 29 behaviours in 12 classes
- 12 classes must be completed within 4 weeks

If successful, you will receive a 6 General Class punch card, in addition to the one free class you receive upon graduation, in lieu of completing 10 weeks of the Foundation Programme.


Behaviours included in the course


  • Come When Called
    (from 30' away in the face of distractions)
  • Down
    (lie down and stay down for 30 seconds, with distractions)
  • Leave it / Take it
    (don't pick up the food/medication I just dropped!)
  • Name
    (pay attention, even in the face of distractions)
  • Polite Walking
    (loose leash, with other dogs around)
  • Settle
    (go to your mat and stay there despite distractions)
  • Sit (stay sitting 30 secs next to me and don't jump up on my friend that we just met)
  • Wait
    (don’t rush out despite distractions on the other side of the door)


Max attendance

Unlimited attendance for MAX 10 weeks,
OR until you pass 100% of all the behaviour levels,
whichever occurs first.

Student pass expiry date

16 calendar weeks
after you have attended your first class.

Selections of classes usually available

Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat

Graduation Certificate

>90% passed: HONOURS
100% + special exam: DISTINCTION!



If you have any questions or concerns about our programme, please do not hesitate to send an e-mail to or call 778-455-1985.


What's New?
What Clients Are Saying:

We just wanted you let you know that we bought 2 of the tractive GPS trackers for our Siberian Huskies as they are a breed known to not come back if let off a leash. We purchased the premium plan and we are truly amazed at what this can do. We have tested it even driving in our vehicle. It was very easy to set up on an app on our phones and each tracker has the capability of having a photo of your dog and shows the picture while tracking. We have a perimeter alarm set on it that texts us as soon as either dog breaches it and no matter where we are in the world we can switch to live tracking and track exactly where they’ve run off to. We are very pleased with how simple everything was and how sturdy the trackers are themselves. We would recommend this to anyone. January 20, 2018

Dee & Terry Durant
Duncan, BC

I had the good fortune and pleasure to take the Foundation Program at Cowichan K9 this winter with my lab cross puppy Cody. Cody just turned 8 months when we graduated with distinction from this awesome training experience. Bev, Karen, and Glenda were terrific and facilitated our learning with clear instruction, helpful tips, and much kindness and caring. I've worked with dogs all my life and was amazed at how much I learned participating in this program and now Cody and I get to benefit daily from our indelible experience with you. Training with such positive reinforcement, small class size, and expert facilitation enhanced our relationship beyond measure and will continue to do so now that we have the tools and understanding. Cody travels on rounds with me and is continually being complimented on his fine manners and keen willingness to please. I am so proud of him! Attending our classes at Cowichan Canine was the highlight of each week and will continue to be as we begin agility classes and scent games. I can't thank you enough for how your program has enriched our relationship and daily life together. I recommend all my clients take their dogs to Cowichan Canine. Every one can benefit! p.s. Your Christmas party was the highlight of the season, hands down! Class act: so many happy, well behaved dogs and their people, games and prizes, Santa and presents, incredibly delicious appies and meatballs galore for all. That was the best Christmas function I've ever attended! Thank you again -

Dr Brenda Bernhardt
Cowichan Veterinary HouseCall Services

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Group Classes, Private or Semi-private in-home training Lessons and confidential
Behaviour Consultations in the Cowichan Valley area, on southern Vancouver Island, servicing Chemainus, Cobble Hill, Cowichan, Cowichan Bay, Crofton, Duncan, Glenora, Ladysmith, Lake Cowichan, Malahat, Maple Bay, Mill Bay, Saltair, Saltspring Island, Shawnigan Lake, Vancouver Island and Youbou.
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