When looking into puppy training classes, it can be difficult to know where to start and what would be best for you and your puppy. If you have never had to find a trainer before, it can be a daunting task. Before signing up for your first class, you should do some research to help you find the best one. Here are some things you should consider to help you choose the right puppy training class for you.
Ask For Recommendations
Your vet will likely be able to recommend excellent trainers in the local area. They may have connections with training providers or hear from clients about who they go to.
You could also ask local rescue organisations, groomers, and boarding kennels. If you know anyone else with dogs, pick their brains about who they used for dog training.
This will help you to gather a list of recommended trainers in the local area and get some idea of the classes that they offer and their training style.
Read Online Reviews
Once you have got a list together of recommended trainers, search them on Google and Facebook and read their reviews from clients.
Reviews will give you insight into others’ experiences with these training providers and what the classes are like and if they are right for you.
Types of Classes
Consider what you want your dog to learn and what you want to get out of these classes. This will help determine what type of class would be best for your dog.
Some of the most common types of classes include puppy classes, basic obedience classes, therapy dog training, sporting, and field dog classes, and search and rescue.
Experience & Knowledge
Find out how long they have been training dogs for, what relevant courses and training they have attended, and what certifications they have.
Ask about where their expertise lies and about some of the most difficult dogs they worked with, and how they trained them.
You should choose a trainer that is capable of doing more than you are looking for – that not only meets your expectations of what you want to achieve with your dog but exceeds them.
The trainer you select needs to be able to communicate effectively both with you as a pet parent, and with your dog.
Make sure that the trainer seems comfortable and confident around all kinds of dogs and that the dogs seem comfortable around them.
It is important that you understand the terminology that you use, and it is even better if they also give out handouts or send emails to recap training so you can reinforce this at home.
Observe the methods and techniques that they use when training.
Good trainers should:
● Use positive training methods
● Implement effective training
● Have a calm and orderly class
● Supervise and carefully manage any off-lead play
● Ensure that people and their dogs are having a good time
● Have separate classes for puppies and adult dogs
● Ensure dogs within a class are all working at a similar level
● Have small, manageable class sizes
● Not be visibly stressed or tense
● Not use prong collars or electric collars
● Not grab, shake, pin down, or shout at puppies or dogs
● Not spray them with water
● Not use noisemakers
● Not humiliate or shame owners
If you do not agree with or feel comfortable with their methods, go with a different trainer.
Taking the time to pick the right training classes for you and your dog will set them up for success, and make life with your dog a whole lot easier and more enjoyable.
At WitsEnd, we pride ourselves on providing good quality safe tuition for you and your dog in a calm, relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
We have a range of training classes available to suit you and your dog, including classes for puppies under 6 months or aged 6 to 12 months, classes for dogs over 6 months with no previous training, advanced dog training, and one-to-one dog training.
Click here to find out more about our range of dog classes.
If you are still unsure about what would be best, get in touch with our team on 0116 244 2455, or email [email protected], for expert advice.