The majority of people who have recently added a puppy to their family start thinking about puppy training. Usually group training is what people consider first, and group training can be great! But sometimes they aren’t right for every dog – so check out this blog to see if it’s right for you!
Benefits of group classes
Good group classes are great for appropriate socialisation, teaching basic behaviours to your dog, you learning how to communicate effectively with your dog. They help with improving confidence, self-control and your dog learning to work around distractions.
Poor classes can be detrimental, increase fear and actively reduce frustration tolerance too. So picking the right class is really important.
But even the best puppy course is usually only 6-8 weeks long, at one hour per week. That is less than 1% of you and your dog’s week for less than two months! It is extremely unlikely that the both of you have learnt everything that you need to in that time!
Your pup might be doing fantastically, but they are still about to go through adolescence! A time when training usually gets worse! So having professional help at this point can be literally life saving! (Did you know most dogs are given up during adolescence?)
Continuing your training can be in lots of different variations. Individual training, especially during adolescence, to work on any specific areas you and your dog need help with can be great! You really get to focus just on what’s important to you and your dog, as and when you need the help.
Further group classes can also progress you and your dog. Especially as they mature and distractions can seem even more distracting! Re-learning to think you’re the most interesting thing around is usually useful!
Training can be goal orientated, focussed on real life training or training just for fun! You and your dog’s relationship, and communication is absolutely key to avoiding behavioural problems down the line. So often what you’re training is a lot less important than how you’re training!
Relying on a six week puppy class to have fully trained your dog is like expecting a human to be a competent surgeon because they went to primary school! There’s a whole lot more education out there for you and your pup to take advantage of!
Prevention is so much better than treatment, so keep the training up and you can have the easiest, happiest life with your dog!