Trainers have many styles, techniques and pricing structures. The most important things to keep in mind are:
- There is no such thing as too old or too young to start!
- You can start training at home immediately: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NaG5vIB1pJA
- If you’ve brought home a puppy, read My Smart Puppy and find a puppy class to start as soon as they’ll let you! Usually you can start these as young as 10-12 weeks old.
- Training is 30% about the dog, 70% about the owner/handler
- Each handler (owner) is different and every dog is different – therefore we forge relationships with each differently! Aiming to become the best handler you can be with help from professional help will give you the BEST SUCCESS!
- Find a trainer who you can connect with and understand
- Since the trainer’s main job is training YOU, it’s important that you can understand them and trust what they’re telling you.
- Training is all about repetition.
- They say a dog needs to repeat a command 30 times with a cue before they’ve learned it. This sounds like a lot; however, it does’t mean you need to set aside 2 hours a day. Start with 5-10 minutes at a time and train/practice in short bursts throughout the day! A great way to time training sessions is every commercial break while watching TV.
- If you’ve bought/adopted/rescued a puppy (under 1 year old), hunker down! The training journey has just begun!! Be willing to invest the time, patience and expense to help your dog be the best dog he/she can be!
Nationwide Pet store trainers
Both PetCo and PetSMART typically have in-store training classes. They’re on the cheaper end of the spectrum and provide a great environment with lots of strange smells, sounds and people in and around classes; socialization. Trainers in these types of facilities come with a variety of training experience and a limited amount of space. Choose your trainer wisely.
Washington:Show recommendations in Western Washington
A Savvy Dog Training
(http://asavvydogtraining.com) – Lynnwood, Mill Creek and Woodinville – Great all around trainers, classes for obedience, agility and reactive dogs.
(http://nitrocanine.com) – Edmonds and most of King County – Lots of packages and classes.
One Command K9
(http://onecommandk9.com) – Lacey, WA – Specializes in general obedience
(http://pacwestk9.com) – Tacoma, WA – Gina comes highly recommended by other shepherd owners – offers general obedience and several dog sports.
(http://www.puppyperfectors.com/) – Seattle, WA – Comes highly recommended for puppy obedience and beginning agility classes.
Riverdog Canine Coach
(https://www.facebook.com/riverdogcaninecoaching/) Issaquah, WA – Great for general obedience as well as dog sports. They are one of the better options out there for puppy classes as well.
(http://www.sparksk9.com/) Monroe, WA – A great resource for both puppies and adults alike! They have specialized classes for reactive dogs as well.
Take the Lead
(http://taketheleaddogtraining.com) – King County – General obedience with specialization in reactivity.
OregonShow recommendations in Western Oregon
Huffman K9 Obedience
http://www.huffmank9.com/ – Canby, OR – Jensen Huffman brings over 18 years of training experience to the public. Services range from puppy classes and group obedience to classes to classes/sessions for dogs with reactivity and severe dog/people aggression; service dog training and personal protection training and more.
Pet Village Ltd
http://www.petvillageltd.com/training – Salem, OR – Jennifer brings a lifetime of experience with German Shepherd Dogs, earning her international judges license to judge working dogs in 2007; known to be the youngest to achieve that honor in U.S. Variety of classes are offered puppy classes, general obedience agility and more.
Online Video coursesShow online video recommendations
(http://leerburg.com) Leerburg is a collection of training material from a large number of trainers with a variety of knowledge and ability.
(http://MikeRitland.com) Mike Ritland, the author of Team Dog, SEAL Dogs and a few other books, has started a new training site like Leerburg. He has been featured across America in various newspapers and television shows.