Charlie’s 2-week Board & Train Diary

Meet “Charlie”, Broncos Defensive Coordinator Ed Donatell’s Golden Doodle pup. Charlie came to us because he was a hyperactive dog who needed to learn to listen through all of his energy. The Donatells decided to enroll him in our 2-week Board & Train program. Like any dog that goes through this program, Charlie had an intensive training schedule each day. Take a look at his daily progress and the improvements he made over his 14-day stay.

Charlies 2-week board and train diary

Day 1 

We started working with Charlie at our Offleash K9 Training facility in Denver on the most important basic obedience commands:

  • Come
  • Sit
  • Place
  • Break

Charlie did so well indoors we were able to take him to a park to increase the level of distractions.

Day 2

The Bronco’s played against the Chief’s and what better way to support Charlie’s owner, the team’s defensive coordinator, than to go out and mingle with the fans. New commands introduced:

  • Heel
  • Down duration

Day 3

Charlie is a champ and making excellent progress. However, it’s important to reinforce newly learned commands to ensure they’re 100% so today we focused on perfecting these basic commands:

  • Place
  • Heel – off leash already!
  • Down with duration

About the 2-week Board & Train program

Day 4

We challenge our dogs by taking them to different parks and environments. No matter where they are, our expectation is that they will perform each command without hesitation. Today, it was time for a visit to Washington Park. Commands focused on:

  • Place with duration
  • Place to down sequence – putting commands together
  • Heel – every day!

Day 5

Today, during one of Charlie’s training sessions, we took him down to the 16th Street Mall to practice off-leash heel practices. Each day during the Board & Train, the dogs get multiple training sessions, totaling about 3-4 hours of obedience practice daily.  Commands focused on:

  • Heel
  • Down
  • Car Manners – a new skill!

Day 6

Home Depot is an excellent location if you are looking for a new environment to socialize your dog with. Lots of distractions: people, sounds, and movement. Always check first if dogs are welcome as this may differ between locations!

Commands focused on today among others

  • Extended distance sit
  • Heel
  • Down duration
  • Place to place to down

Here is Charlie practicing his down with duration side-by-side with beautiful Rottweiler Rambo, whose owner is Colorado Avalanche player Matt Nieto.


Day 7

It was time to increase the challenge for Charlie and we introduce “come to heel” while also keeping up with the basic commands Charlie has learned so far. In addition to a visit to Cheesman Park, Charlie got to practice his socialization and obedience skills with Aussie “Sheila”, owned by Bronco’s defensive lineman’s coach Bill Kollar.

  • Come to heel
  • Extended distance sit
  • Extended distance sit to place sequence

Day 8

Charlie has mastered off-leash heel, even with distractions. He continues to practice “come to heel” with an extended distance sit away from his handler. Not even a passerby will distract him from listening!  Commands focused on today:

  • Come to heel to heel
  • Come to heel to extended distance sit sequence
  • Introduce: Touch

Day 9

Charlie had another working session together with buddy Sheila. Their new challenge is to listen intently to their handler Yvonne as she tells each dog to perform a different command, that they have previously learned individually.

Charlie’s focus:

  • Come to heel to heel
  • Extended distance sit
  • Down duration with Sheila
  • Heel with Sheila

About the 2-week board and train program

Day 10

With only a few days left of training, Charlie’s trainer focus on reinforcing previously learned commands in different environments. The team works in a park and again on the busy 16th Street Mall.

  • Through to heel
  • Extended distance sit
  • Down duration
  • Introduce: Through

Day 11

A playground can be a busy place with children running around, loud sounds, yelling, and unfamiliar equipment. We do not advise owners to take their dog to such a location until dog has strong listening skills and is ready to work under this level of distraction. Charlie did a wonderful job today at the playground perfecting the following skills:

  • Through to place to touch
  • Extended distance sit
  • Down duration

Day 12

Go Broncos! It was game day against the Colts so Charlie showed off his support while keeping up with his own intensive training schedule to become a champion.  Obedience focus

  • Come to heel to heel
  • Place duration
  • Down duration
  • Car manners

Day 13

It is the last day of intensive training as Charlie’s two-week Board & Train is coming to an end. His trainer work with him in a highly distractive environment on sequencing multiple commands he’s mastered during his day, including:

  • Through to heel to come to heel to touch
  • Down to extended distance sit to come to heel
  • Down duration

Day 14 – Graduation Day!

Charlie has come so far during his two weeks with us. He now listens to commands, both outside and off-leash with distractions. We will miss this fluffy, lovable pup so much.

Charlie’s owner came in for a 2-hour, one-on-one session, in which we went through everything Charlie had learned, showed how to properly control Charlie using his newly acquired listening skills, and talked about how to maintain his obedience practice.

Should Charlie ever need a little reminder, all his owners need to do is call us. We offer all our Board & Train clients free refresher lessons for their dog.


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