Safe spaces for anxious or fearful learners

live with Ellen yoakum

A KPA LIVE!™ Class featuring real-time training and coaching WITH ellen

Available to Watch On Demand

Help your dogs feel safe and secure around the stimuli that scare them

Join Ellen and build safe and secure learning environments for any dog
Enrollment Opens on April 16th, 2024 at 10 am PT/1 pm ET. Spots are Limited!

Hurry! Registration for Engage experience closes May 6th and Dog/Handler (Excel) Spots are sold out.

Enroll by July 23rd for Excel (dog/handler) spots or July 30th for Engage! Spots are Limited and Available on a First-Come, First-Served Basis.

Sold out! Sign up below to get notified when a future class will be offered.

Tuition: $5,300 (see course page for prices in other currency)

LEARN, PRACTICE, SHARE

LIVE learning brings concepts to life

LEARN

Six weeks of training, a week-by-week curriculum integrated with four LIVE virtual classes with real-time coaching, interactive learning, and Q&A. Super educational, super fun.

PRACTICE

The LIVE week-by-week curriculum integrates with, and prepares you for, the weekly LIVE class. New levels of advancement each week!

SHARE

Ask questions and share insights, pics, and your training videos. Celebrate progress together!

A week-by-week curriculum guides your learning every step of the way. Each week, join your classmates for one of four LIVE classes for real-time training and personalized interactive coaching, plus Q&A with your instructor. You will see other students practice the behaviors, hear your instructor’s feedback, make adjustments, and improve their training. Each of these Zoom-based classes is two hours long. All students get access to the full week-by-week curriculum and class forum. In each Zoom class:

  • Engage students watch training and your instructor’s coaching and can ask questions through Zoom chat.
  • Excel students get personalized real-time coaching and feedback on their training during the Zoom class PLUS on-screen Q&A.

Miss a class? No problem. LIVE classes are also recorded.

Let's Begin This Fabulous Journey, Together

Safe-Spaces-for-Anxious-or-Fearful-Learners-JourneySafe-Spaces-for-Anxious-or-Fearful-Learners-Journey-Mobile
See What's Covered in Each unit

COMPARE STUDENT LEVELS

CHOOSE YOUR STUDENT EXPERIENCE

Enroll for the Engage or Excel student experience.

  • In the Engage experience, you receive the four LIVE classes over Zoom; the integrated weekly course curriculum with both video and written exercises to train your dog; the class discussion forum for comments, questions, and video sharing; access to the class recordings and curriculum for one year.
  • In the Excel experience, you get everything above plus you are one of eight students that the instructor will personally coach week-by-week through the class material. Support from the instructor includes feedback on your video submissions, coaching, prioritized Q&A during each LIVE class, and a detailed written assessment of your progress.

Compare the differences below and choose the experience that works best for you!

Excel

SOLD OUT

$399

Only 8 spots

Engage

$199

limited enrollments

SOLD OUT

4 LIVE Classes over 4 weeks, 2-2.5 hours each, 8.5 hours total

LIVE Class

Real-time coaching during LIVE classes

full participation

observe only

Q&A during LIVE classes
Recordings available post-class

4-unit curriculum coordinated with LIVE class. Includes:

  • Weekly skill videos, webinar-style (pre-recorded)

Coordinated
Curriculum

  • Fun, weekly training exercises and training challenges (downloadable)
  • Written weekly feedback on practice training videos
Weekly training time recommended for exercises

1.5-2 hours weekly

1.5-2 hours weekly

Access to class discussion forum for sharing comments, questions, and videos
Share comments

Discussion
Forum

Ask the instructor written training questions

Share practice videos and receive Instructor feedback

Up to 5 minutes per unit and 20 minutes total

Observe instructor feedback on
student videos

Share practice training videos with
the class
Unlimited submissions
Unlimited submissions
Eligible for SkillCheck assessment

SkillCheck

Evaluation
from Ken Ramirez

Submit assessment video for up to 30 days
after the class ends

Eligible to earn SkillCheck designation in Snake Avoidance (must meet set criteria)
LIVE class recordings - 1 year

Post Course
Access

Unit video lectures - 1 year

Unit exercises and training challenges - 1 year

More

Course-completion certificate
CEU-eligible

Side by side comparison

CHOOSE YOUR STUDENT EXPERIENCE

Enroll for the Engage or Excel student experience.

  • In the Engage experience, you receive the four LIVE classes over Zoom, the integrated weekly course curriculum with both video and any written exercises to train your dog; the class discussion forum for comments, questions, and video sharing; access to the class recordings and curriculum for one year.
  • In the Excel experience, you get everything above plus you are one of eight students that the instructor will personally coach week-by-week through the class marterial. Support from the instructor includes feedback on your video submissions, coaching, prioritized Q&A during each LIVE class, and a detailed written assessment of your progress.

Compare the differences below and choose the experience that works best for you!

LIVE Class

4 LIVE Classes over 4 weeks, 2-2.5 hours each, 8.5 hours total
Real-time coaching during LIVE classes(observe only)
Q&A during LIVE classes
Recordings available post-class

Coordinated Curriculum

4-unit curriculum coordinated with LIVE class. Includes:
  • Weekly skill videos, webinar-style, pre-recorded
  • Weekly fun training exercises and training challenges, downloadable
Weekly training time suggested for exercises (1.5-2 hours weekly)

Discussion Forum

Class discussion forum for sharing comments, questions, and videos
Share comments

See instructor feedback on
student videos

Share practice training videos with the class (Unlimited submissions)

Post Course Access

Unit video lectures - 1 year
Unit exercises and training challenges - 1 year

More

Course-completion certificate
CEU-eligible

LIVE Class

4 LIVE Classes over 4 weeks, 2-2.5 hours each, 8.5 hours total
Real-time coaching during LIVE classes (full participation)
Q&A during LIVE classes
Recordings available post-class

Coordinated Curriculum

4-unit curriculum coordinated with LIVE class. Includes:
  • Weekly skill videos, webinar-style, pre-recorded
  • Weekly fun training exercises and training challenges, downloadable
  • Written weekly feedback on practice training videos
Weekly training time suggested for exercises (1.5-2 hours weekly)

Discussion Forum

Class discussion forum for sharing comments, questions, and videos
Share comments

Ask the instructor written training questions

Share practice videos and receive instructor feedback Up to 5 minutes per unit and 20 minutes total

See the instructor's feedback on
student videos

Share practice training videos with the class (Unlimited submissions)

SkillCheck

Eligible for SkillCheck assessment
Evaluation from Ken Ramirez
Submit assessment video for up to 30 days after the class ends
Eligible to earn SkillCheck designation in Snake Avoidance (must meet set criteria)

Post Course Access

Unit video lectures - 1 year
Unit exercises and training challenges - 1 year

More

Course-completion certificate
CEU-eligible
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SHOW YOUR SKILLS
EARN YOUR DESIGNATION

SkillCheckTM assessment with Ken

Meet the criteria to earn the designation during the course or up to 30 days after the course ends

Snake biological shipped to you to help your training (USA)!

Available only to the Excel experience and included in tuition 

You earned your KPA SkillCheck: Snake Avoidance digital badge!

SkillCheckTM is a formalized KPA method for teachers to provide feedback to students on the skills taught in a specific course. SkillCheck criteria are developed for each KPA course or class.

In this course, SkillCheck is available only to students in the Excel experience. You will receive an easy-to-digest assessment of your skill progress on the Snake Avoidance protocol and, if you demonstrate proficiency, you will earn the SkillCheck designation for Snake Avoidance!

Safe Spaces for Anxious or Fearful Learners LIVE with Ellen Yoakum

LEARN WITH Ellen Yoakum

Ellen Yoakum KPA-CTP and Certified SA Pro Trainer, is a co-owner of Pet Harmony Animal Behavior & Training. Through Pet Harmony, Ellen and her team help pets and their guardians foster a happy, healthy, and harmonious lifestyle. They specialize in private sessions addressing behavior issues ranging from nuisance problems to serious maladaptive behaviors such as aggression, anxiety, and fear. Additionally, Ellen mentors professionals to enhance the quality of life for pets, clients, and themselves through Pet Harmony’s PETPro Mentorship Program, prioritizing a safe and supportive learning environment. 

After acquiring her BSc in Psychology with an emphasis on Animal Behavior from the University of Washington, Ellen has worked in a variety of fields including wildlife rehabilitation, zoological settings, dog daycare and boarding, captive animal welfare research, private training and behavior consulting, and University teaching. She is a frequent speaker at conferences, has published literature, appeared on podcasts, and has dedicated her career to the well-being of animals. Ellen has been involved in animal care since 2009, obtaining her KPA-CTP certification in 2017 and SAPro certification in 2021.

Here's What You'll Be Learning UNIT by UNIT

1

a safe foundation

In Unit 1, Ellen coaches you through building a solid foundation so that you always have a stable and effective place to return to when life gets messy. 

Unit 1 topics include:

  • What is a safe space? 
  • What are the phases of creating an adequate, safe space? 
  • How to create a plan that you can follow realistically, not just lofty goals
  • How to identify your goals for a safe space. In what situations do you think your pet needs a defined safe space, or where do you want to create one? 
  • How to measure progress. What observable measures can you use to assess your progress? 
  • Beginning an effective enrichment program that facilitates and classically conditions calm. 

2

Safe and Sustainable

In Unit 2, you will learn what to do when life gets tough for your learner. This knowledge includes measuring and adjusting your long-term calming projects and capturing and building a reinforcement history for behavioral signs of de-escalation. In this unit, you will build on your behavior-observation prowess and hone your behavior-capturing skills. 

Unit 2 topics include:

  • How to assess and adjust your pet’s safe space 
  • How to keep the safe space safe, even when things get stressful
  • How to observe, measure, and assess the efficacy of your long-term calming projects so that you can provide effective and varied options that match your daily bandwidth. 
  • Teaching your pet to go to the safe space (2 variants) 
  • Capturing signs of de-escalation (2 variants) so that you can help your pet practice the behaviors that elicit relaxation. 

3

Not-So-Scary Opportunities

In everyday life, safe spaces are needed when a learner lacks control. In Unit 3, you will work on the elements of variability and excitement and teach your dog that these conditions are just cues that can be positively associated with the security of the dog’s safe space. You will learn how to link stimuli into a sequence of cues, providing your pup with a plan for when the environment gets too spooky.

Unit 3 topics include:

  • How to add additional layers of safety and comfort to your pet’s safe space 
  • Teaching your dog to party and that safety is only a party away 
  • Layering in distraction to help generalize and build fluency
  • Bringing skills together to create a whole safety picture

 

4

Choosing Safety and Security

In Unit 4, you will combine the skills learned in Units 1-3 and apply them to the situations and stimuli that affect your dog. You will learn how to utilize your learner’s safe space when needed, build a plan to keep the momentum going for you and your dog, and teach your dog that the space you built in this class isn’t the only safe space in the dog’s world.

Unit 4 topics include:

  • Practicing the whole sequence - escalation -> safe space -> de-escalation 
  • What to do when your pet starts using the safe space INDEPENDENTLY
  • Building your flexible plan and your enrichment menu so that you can match your bandwidth, no matter how difficult or calm your day
  • How to create new safe spaces
  • How to utilize your pet’s safe space for uncontrolled and controlled triggers

Join the journey!

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