What to expect at dog training classes

What To Expect At Dog Training Classes

When you first decide that your dog needs to go to training, that famous scene from Marley & Me probably starts playing in your head! Whether your dog is a puppy that just needs to learn the ropes or if your older dog is out of control, dog training classes can prove to be invaluable. 

If you’ve never been to a dog training class before, you might be wondering what to expect.

Due to Covid-19 and lockdown restrictions, you can now get Dog & Puppy Training Online 

Here is the lowdown to give you paws for thought.

 

 

The Trainer

Dog training is a broad specialism, and the types of training vary just as much as the trainers themselves. It’s important to find a dog trainer that aligns with your goals, as well as someone who is highly professional and experienced. After all, this is the person who you will be relying on to get your dog under control.

Try to look for a trainer who uses positive reinforcement rather than regimental or a punishment based approach. You want your dog to enjoy the classes and benefit from them, which is why a firm but approachable trainer is desirable. Most trainers will allow you to sit in a class before you book which will help you get a better idea of their style.

The Facility

Dog training classes should be held at a purpose-built facility, though they can be held outdoors too. The location must be puppy proof and free from hazards. If the classes are held outside, then there should be fencing to protect the dogs from escaping or running into nearby traffic. 

Not all dog training is basic obedience, as the likes of agility training are popular for dogs too. This requires specialist equipment to allow your dog to jump, balance and run through tunnels. So you should look to match up the facility with the type of training you want to put your dog through. 

Other Dogs

Unless you choose 1:1 training, there will be other dogs at the session. This can be of benefit to owners as it gives you a chance to socialise and see how your pet is progressing compared with other dogs. Be mindful though that the larger the class, the less individual attention your dog is likely to receive. The ideal class size for dog training is about 6 dogs. 

If other dogs in your class are disruptive, then a good trainer would look to address this rather than allowing it to disrupt the rest of the class. This is another reason why observing a class before you sign up is invaluable because you want to make sure this will be the case. The trainer should be confident and have a good handle on the situation. 

Plenty Of Homework

In an ideal world, your dog would learn everything in just a handful of training sessions. Dog ownership is a commitment that lasts many years, and not all behaviours can be nipped in the bud just like that. Rather, training your dog needs to continue at home and be helped by all members of the household. 

The teenage years (when the dog is around 6-18 months old) can be particularly challenging. Your dog may ignore previous commands or develop new behavioural patterns. So, keep in mind that you may have to return to training classes later down the line or get some personalised expert help for more extreme behaviour. 

To Sum Up

Dog training classes give your pooch the best chance at learning obedience. They are incredibly versatile and can cover the basics right through to working dog skills. From an owner’s perspective, you should expect that the classes will be intensive but rewarding if you stick with them. 

The training then needs to continue at home and for the rest of the dog’s life in some form or another. By getting everyone in the family on board, your dog has the best chance of success.

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