My dog, Kona, and I had a fantastic experience with our trainer, Rachel. I say “our” trainer, because she trained me as much or more than Kona. Our 8 sessions met all my goals, and I learned so much that I can take with me in the future. I was surprised at how my connection with Kona grew closer during the course of the training. That was an unexpected benefit! If you have a dog with issues you think you can’t correct, think again. Alpha Dog Instincts can help. Worth every penny.
Both home and group training have their advantages. Some personal trainers will come to your home and teach you one-on-one. Some dog owners choose to train their pets on their own. Group class training helps your dog learn to focus despite distractions from other dogs. Home training has the advantage of being private; you and your trainer can focus on the skills you want your dog to acquire, whereas group programs may spend time on issues you don't care about. In other cases, you may have no choice but to learn at home; remote or rural areas may lack a local training facility where you can enroll in group lessons.
Most training schools will gladly let you observe a class or two to make sure the teaching method is in line with your beliefs (leave your pup at home for this.) Positive reinforcement training, which involves rewarding the dog for making the correct option while withholding rewards or ignoring the dog when the dog makes the incorrect decision, works well for most dogs. When you're watching a class, pay attention to the dogs. Do they appear to be having fun? Do you feel at ease? Is the trainer critiquing and teaching the pets and their owners effectively? Is the class being run safely and efficiently? If you are uncomfortable at a training school, your dog will be as well, and you will be setting your dog up for failure. Continue looking for a school where you and your dog will feel at peace; here is where you and your dog will thrive.
A range of classes are available at numerous training schools. The instructors at the schools should be able to help you figure out which class is best for you and your dog. Most institutions accept puppies as young as eight weeks old for puppy sessions, and training can progress through STAR Puppy, Canine Good Citizen certification, and advanced obedience instruction. Puppies and their owners who have completed at least six weeks of instruction and have met many additional fundamental training and care-taking standards are awarded the STAR Puppy certification. The CGC certification is more rigorous, indicating that your dog has received obedience training and is well-behaved around people and other dogs.
Every training institution should notify you what equipment and supplies you'll need before the first lesson. When your dog arrives at school, most schools require them to wear a flat buckle or snap collar and a traditional four-to-six-foot snap-on leash. If you have a huge, strong dog who is difficult to handle with a flat collar, body harnesses can be a great solution.
More than just how to train your dog will be taught in a good dog training course. These days, there is a lot more information available on canine behavior, socialization, and body language, and a skilled trainer will cover these topics in class as well as the training topics at hand. The need of socializing for pups up to 16 weeks old, as well as interpreting your dog's body language, are two important issues that are now continuously emphasized in training seminars. Handling and grooming is another area that is frequently overlooked. If you listen to your instructor and follow their advice, your veterinarian and groomer will appreciate it. Begin touching and grooming your puppy as soon as you get them home, and your vet and groomer will have no trouble evaluating, treating, bathing, or trimming them. If your dog only sees nail clippers or a brush at the vet's or groomer's, he'll probably associate them with being scared or unpleasant. Starting at home, where your dog is at peace, you can make the medical and grooming procedures far more pleasant for everyone. Furthermore, many groomers charge less for easy-to-handle dogs because they may be groomed without the assistance of a second groomer.
Canine habits such as jumping on you as a gesture of devotion, nipping at your hands as an invitation to play, and smelling you in odd areas are all perfectly normal. On the other hand, these activities are not acceptable in the human world. Remember that your dog was born knowing only how to be a dog. If you want him to prosper in the human world, you must first teach him what is suitable. It's simplest to teach this to a puppy, but it can also be taught to an older dog.
If leaping on you when you're wearing fine work pants isn't acceptable, then the same principles must apply while you're working in the yard in old clothing. You must be consistent when it comes to training.
Did you know your dog is showing his want for attention when he bites at your hands? You must teach him because he was not born knowing that they should sit and seek for attention in the appropriate manner. Instead of lecturing them, ask them to sit. When they obey, give them a treat, praise, and rubbing, or a game of fetch or tug of war. Positive reinforcement training with training goodies is a great approach to teach puppies to obey. It's easy to miss a calm dog, but that's exactly when you should be complimenting him. What will your dog do if the only way he can grab your attention is by leaping on you or biting you?
Obedience training benefits all dogs, especially high-energy breeds that require both mental and physical stimulation. A well-behaved pet must know how to sit, down, stay, come, and leave it. Teach your dog advanced actions like "go to place," "formal heeling," "turn over," and so on to push them even further. A tired dog is a nice dog, as the old adage goes. On the other side, a mentally and physically fulfilled dog is even better.