Walk with Cody - Dog Fear Programme
We believe in helping children and adults to build their confidence around dogs in a controlled environment. We offer one to one sessions to help you or your child to understand dogs, their body language and how to interact with them. We work at your/your child's pace to increase their confidence around dogs. If you would like to find out more or book a session please contact us.
Walk with Cody Fund
For those who may find the cost of taking part in the programme a barrier you are able to make an application to the Walk with Cody Fund who can contribute to the fee. Please contact us for more details.
'I can’t thank the team at South West Dog Skills enough and I highly recommend their dog fear programme. We have booked onto their dog fear programme twice for my eldest son who was terrified of dogs. Both Matt and Cody were amazing with my son. At the start of his first session, my son could not go near Cody, Matt worked with my son and by the end of the session he was able to walk next to Matt holding Cody’s lead . It was truly amazing to watch. After that my son was able to be around dogs without getting scared which was something he could never do before.
For our second session Matt and Cody again were amazing and my son remembered everything Matt had taught him from the first session and they worked on ways to build my son's confidence even more.
Now my son is confident around both dogs he knows and dogs he doesn’t. He has spent a weekend at his Aunts house with their family dog and can acknowledge other dogs but also has the knowledge of how to give other dogs the signal of no. I am so proud of my son and how he can be around dogs which is all thanks to Matt and Cody. Thank you again.'
Jacob 6 years
'We can thoroughly recommend Matt and Tam. Our 10 year old son is scared of dogs, so we contacted them to see if they could help. They have both been so friendly, understanding, patient and willing to help, nothing was too much trouble for them. They knew exactly how to help him, and they were happy to adapt their course to suit his needs, going above and beyond to help. After only 2 sessions we can see a huge improvement. Would have no hesitation in recommending them, thank you very much Matt and Tam'
Piers 10 years
Following a bad experience with a dog in the park last year, my five-year-old became extremely frightened of dogs, anxious at the thought of going to parks in case we saw a dog, and visibly distressed whenever we actually saw one - especially if it was off the lead. We decided we needed to try and address the situation, so contacted Tam and Matt at South West Dog Skills as there’s no one we would trust more to advise us. We arranged a home visit and, from the moment he arrived, Matt worked to build rapport with our daughter and put her at ease. He worked at her pace and focused on giving her tools to safely manage encounters with dogs when out and about, using age-appropriate language and one of her dog teddies as a visual aid.
Our daughter seemed to respond well to the ‘theory’ session, so we all went outside to meet Matt’s dog, Cody. Although very nervous at first, our daughter progressed to hiding treats for Cody in the garden and using a cue to ask him to sit. When it became obvious that she’d had enough, Matt read her cues and ended the session. Since then we have been putting Matt’s advice into practice. Although she is still anxious around unknown dogs, Matt has provided us with a toolbox for coping with dog encounters. Our daughter will now calmly walk past a dog on a lead and, amazingly, mustered enough courage to stroke a friend’s dog when we visited them - something I never thought would happen! I didn’t expect overnight changes but I’m really pleased with the progress we’ve made, given how frightened our daughter had become of dogs. I’d fully recommend South West Dog Skills and will be booking some more sessions in the near future.
Maia 5 years