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Service Dog Training

After my daughter was diagnosed with Celiac when she was 5 years old I started the journey to train a dog to become a gluten detection service dog. I had been a trainer for over 10 years at the point but I had never ventured into service dog training. I found Dawn Scheu of Willow Service Dogs LLC. and worked with her to train our first gluten detection dog. I went on to intern with Dawn and now specialize in scent based service dog tasks. It is my passion to help people who are in need of a service dog. 

Through working with Dawn and her internship program I have watched and helped countless service dog teams go from pet owners with puppies to service dog handlers and service dogs. Now I get to do the same thing with my own clients, all through virtual lessons. Virtual Service Dog training allowed me to train my dog in Germany with a trainer in Michigan. This means I know exactly how you will feel and how to help you learn. The fact is there are very few trainers in the world that are capable of training gluten/allergen detection to the high level it needs to be trained to keep handlers safe from cross contamination, training virtually means you can have access to me from anywhere in the world. 

Melissa Cushman stands with a Bouvier des Flandres to the left and right of her in heel poistion. She is wearing a mask.

How does it work?

After an initial consult where we will discuss your needs, goals and training experience. I will formulate a plan based on our conversation I will make a recommendation for how to move forward to reach your goals.

All service dog training is done on a monthly subscription basis. We meet virtually for 30 or 45 minutes either once or twice a week. I will guide you in training your dog and use my personal dogs to demonstrate when necessary. You have access to an exclusive private group hosted here on my website and facebook where you can message me, send me videos between our meetings, ask questions and get to meet other handlers and dogs going through the program as well. 

All service dog teams that graduate the program will need to pass both a public access assessment and skill/task assessment. These assessments can be done virtually or in person. I use O.D.O.R. Service Dogs Inc. title program for this, each team will be evaluated by an O.D.O.R. Service Dogs Inc. evaluator (not me) to ensure the assessment is unbiased and the dog is performing it's skills appropriately.


Monthly Plans

One Session per Week


30 minute sessions 

$200 USD per month


45 minute sessions 

$300 USD per month

Two Sessions per Week


30 minute sessions

$400 USD per month


45 minute sessions 

$600 USD per month

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