Positive Dog Board & Train Camp | Instinct Nashville, TN

Board & Train Camp + Coaching

Our Most Comprehensive Educational Program

Struggling with your dog’s training or behavior? Let us give you and your dog the skills you need to confidently navigate life together, with a fully customized, positive reinforcement Camp + Coaching program with Instinct Nashville.

A Life-Changing Learning Experience

Forget about old-fashioned, boot camp-style dog training programs that use questionable methods and include little (if any) instruction for you! Instinct Nashville Camp + Coaching programs combine the powerful learning boost that comes through positive reinforcement board & train camp, with the lasting behavior change that comes through private coaching sessions. So you and your dog can live a happier life together.

Camp + Coaching programs are perfect for:

  • Leash reactivity
  • Leash manners
  • Impulse controlaround food, toys, and doorways
  • Stay/Settling skills
  • Coming when called
  • Polite manners during greetings
  • Confidence building
  • Comfort with handling, petting, and grooming
  • ...and more!

Note: Board & Train Camp + Coaching programs are not suitable for working on potty training goals or separation anxiety issues, or for behavior issues that are highly specific to a certain person or location (try Private Coaching instead!).

“We are thrilled with our experience at Instinct. The staff really got to know our pup, Ernie, and he learned a lot in his two weeks at camp. He now walks nicely on a leash, checks in with us regularly on and off leash and comes when called, even when he is distracted. We love Instinct’s positive reinforcement approach and found the follow-up visits and exercises easy to understand and uphold. Our dog has some issues with his back legs and the entire team at Instinct kept a close eye on him and modified his play schedule to accommodate his disability. We felt that he was safe and in good hands throughout his stay. They provided photos, updates, and some videos of his training progress. We highly recommend Instinct.”

Greg B.

How Instinct Board & Train Camp Works:

Before Camp

You and your coach will:
  • Set fair, positive goals for you and your dog
  • Determine the environmental setup, relationship dynamics, wellness routines, and skills and/or behavior therapy exercises you and your dog will need, to achieve your goals and support your dog’s behavioral health
  • Get started with pre-camp training execises that prep your dog to get the most out of their camp experience

During Camp

Your coach will:

  • Provide your dog with daily, positive training & behavior modification sessions to move you and your dog closer to your goals
  • Work with our canine care team to implement your dog’s canine behavioral health support plan while they are at camp
  • Track and log behavior & training progress, adjusting as needed
  • Communicate frequently to share new insights about your dog, their learning style and their behavioral needs; to share successes; and to collaborate on potential program or mission adjustments as needed
  • Include you in the learning process via at-home learning materials and in-facility coaching sessions with your dog (the number of in-camp coaching sessions will be determined by your coach, but it is generally about 1 per week)

After Camp

You will:

  • Continue where camp left off, with continued private coaching sessions
  • Continue to track and log progress, and communicate frequently with your coach via your Collaborative Coaching board
  • Become part of our alumni family, and have the option to attend our free and/or low-cost alumni classes, participate in twice-monthly Zoom Q&A’s, and get support in our alumni-only Facebook group.

Instinct Nashville’s Camp + Coaching programs cost $1495/week and are designed for dogs ages 5 months and older (if you have a dog younger than 5 months, try Puppy Camp!). Dogs stay at our serene Goodlettsville facility. Programs last between 1-4 weeks and include private coaching sessions for you, plus lifetime access to free and/or low-cost alumni classes.

Ready to Get Started?

Book a free discovery call with our co-Director of Behavior & Training, Julie Farris, so we can learn more about whether Camp + Coaching might be the right fit for you and your pup!

Or, connect with us now at 615-994-8447 or [email protected]. Our client services team would love to learn more about your dog and your goals, and help you determine the best way to get started with us!

Canine Behavioral Health Campus

Located in serene Goodlettsville, TN, our multiacre Canine Behavioral Health Campus is like no other in Nashville. Like all Instinct facilities, we are staffed 24/7 by skilled, compassionate behavior professionals.

Spacious Play Yards & Walking Trails

We have multiple fenced outdoor play yards where dogs can run, play, and train, either in small groups or individually. Our property includes beautiful nature trails, perfect for doggy decompression walks and for off-leash recall training.

Designed for Learning

Our campus is designed to facilitate learning and support the behavioral health of dogs in our care. From enrichment and activity stations, to traffic flow and temperature sensors, every element is selected to help dogs and humans feel relaxed and comfortable.

'Real Life' Rooms

Our real-life learning spaces allow for effective teaching and behavior therapy that transfers back home – whether working on guest protocol, mealtime manners, or “home office etiquette”.

Gradual Exposure

Our quiet, country location means we can safely, gradually expose dogs to triggers that might normally cause them distress – such as other dogs, or people approaching – building up to the more challenging situations they face in ‘real world.’

Private Kennels

Between activities, dogs rest in safe, clean, quiet kennels. Our kennel areas offer dogs their own private space to get the rest they need to stay happy, health, and ready to learn. We provide comfy bedding, fresh water, in-kennel enrichment, and a rotating selection of classical music, Disney® cartoon classics, and talk radio.

8 Important Facts about Instinct Camp + Coaching

1. It’s fantastic…when it’s the right fit.

Board & Train Camp + Coaching can be a truly life-changing program for dogs and their humans, but only when it’s the right fit for all involved. We will determine whether Camp + Coaching – or another program – is the best option for you and your dog during your kickoff consultation. When it comes to program suitability, we consider not just your training goals, but your dog’s individual behavior profile and issues, your home environment, family/relationship dynamics, your own personal outlook on training & behavior, and more.

We want you and your dog to have a positive, productive experience with us; that can only happen if we select a program type that is well-suited to your goals, your dog, and your situation.

2. Your involvement is required.

This program is not structured like a traditional “boot camp”, where owner instruction is often limited or not provided at all. Instead, the included coaching for you begins before camp, then continues during camp, and long after your dog goes back home. Why? Our goal is to help you create lasting behavior change, in a way that protects and enhances their dog’s long-term behavioral health. That takes time and significant, ongoing involvement from you.

3. We move at your dog’s pace.

Our goal is to help you make as much progress as possible toward your goals while your dog is at camp; we will troubleshoot and work hard as a team to do so. But we won’t add more pressure to your dog or force them into situations or circumstances they aren’t ready for, in an attempt to meet expectations about how fast your dog “should” learn. That’s why we provide extensive post-camp support via collaborative coaching sessions and lifetime free alumni classes.

4. We want you to understand your dog better.

Our goal is not only to make progress toward your goals, but to help you learn a whole lot about your dog in the process. As your coach communicates through your dog’s Collaborative Coaching board, and as you participate in coaching sessions, you will gain invaluable insights into your dog’s learning style, their strengths and their challenges, and how they perceive the world around them. 

5. We use positive methods, and do not use aversive equipment such as electronic collars, prong collars, and slip chains.

If you currently use this equipment with your dog, please know there is no judgment cast your way– we KNOW how much you love your dog! If you are curious to learn more about why and how we do things differently here at Instinct, we welcome the opportunity to have that discussion with you in a safe, supportive manner.

6. We work and problem-solve using a team-based approach.

Coaches communicate regularly with our senior behavior leadership team, and with your dog’s other care providers as necessary, about program design and execution during and after your dog’s camp. 

7. We are not the cheapest option available.

Our facilities are staffed 24/7, with a very low staff-to-dog ratio. Instinct team members are employees, not independent contractors; they have access to benefits such as worker’s compensation, paid sick time and vacation, healthcare, and more. We help with continuing education and certification costs. Our team members at every level make a fair, living wage; they are also highly skilled, dedicated, and committed to helping our clients succeed. 

8. We are here to support you and your dog.

If you are trying your best, we will move mountains to help you and your dog live a happier life together (seriously).

What Clients are Saying about Us:

Lucy, Retha & Family

“Super professional, effective, and EVERYTHING is all about positive training, nothing negative. I love that. I also love that Julie asked me what we wanted our Great Dane to do, and worked specifically on those things They really listen to what each family needs. I loved Julie so much, I got another Great Dane so she could train her, too!! 😉 I couldn’t be happier with the results of BOTH dogs.”

Glitchie & Family

“Jess Stone was absolutely fantastic with Glitchie (g), my little rescue. G was a pandemic puppy and while incredibly playful, was very nervous about encountering people and dogs in our housing area, which manifested as aggression. Jess by was great; I watched G pick up life-skills to help her diffuse her energy and anxieties in amazing ways. She was patient, kind, but also vigilant while I got used to the steep learning curve of dealing with a very energetic and leash aggressive dog. It’s been over 5 months since we did training, and g has retained all the life-skills Jess taught her. I look forward to booking follow-ups in the future. I can’t recommend Jess highly enough!”

Instinct Nashville, TN

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