Are Dog Training Classes Worth It?

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YES!! You should go ahead and invest your time and money in teaching your dog by enrolling in regular training classes. It will be well worth your time and effort in the end. If you’ve tried training your dog on your own but are having trouble improving his obedience or behavior, now is the time to hire a professional trainer.

Training a dog is an extremely important step in dog ownership. When people ask us which dog breed is the most dangerous one, we always respond, “the untrained dog.” Unfortunately, the number of cases of dog parents ending up in hospitals due to their dogs is increasing day by day.

You will be shocked to know that in the United States, about 4.5 million dog bites occur each year. According to a survey in 2018, 27,000 patients had to undergo surgical operations after being bitten by a dog.

There are also cases of pet owners abandoning their dogs due to their misbehavior and extreme aggression. It is obviously due to the poor training or not training the dogs at all. Dogs with proper training are less likely to end up in animal shelters.

According to the Shelter Animals Count, 3.3 million dogs end up in shelters each year. 30% of these are left there by the pet owners themselves. Well! Experts say that the large proportion of dogs abandoned in animal shelters, almost 90%, have never been trained.

If your neighbors frequently complain about your dog barking at their children, if he behaves ferociously around other pets, acts aggressively in front of food, or chooses to ignore you when you call him, it’s time to start teaching him some basic commands.

Based on the statistics mentioned above, we highly suggest you invest in proper dog training classes for your puppy unless you want to end up harming yourself or dumping your pet.

Your puppy becomes more attentive and well-behaved as you engage in various training programs. His temper will begin to improve. Bullying will become a thing of the past in his life. Your dog’s confidence will grow, and his learning ability will improve as a result.

With the right mental stimulation and training, a dog’s mind will become more dynamic and receptive to learning new information. His physical health will improve as well if he is mentally relaxed. The most important thing is that your bond with your dog will strengthen.

Types of Training Classes

Following are the major types of training classes for dogs:

Behavioral Training

Often dogs have a lot of behavioral issues like barking for no reason, especially at guests. Most of the time, they bark, either seeking attention or out of boredom or anxiety.

Excessive barking is considered an undesirable behavior. Likewise, dogs also have an innate behavior of chewing everything. Puppy training classes can help discourage them from unnecessary barking and chewing.

Over-energized dogs start digging in the backyard; contrarily some dogs often feel too low to do anything and isolate themselves.

They eliminate their waste in the lounge or on the carpet. Dogs can also bite the owners or the guests out of their aggression, though it’s rare. Behavioral training can help in rectifying all such behavioral issues.

Do you wonder what trainers do to handle these behavioral issues? They make the dog follow their orders by rewarding good behaviors because dogs follow the trainers as long as they are getting some delicious treats. Interestingly, this type of training can be done at tome too.

Obedience Training

Obedience training is meant for making the dog obey all the orders. Obedience classes often last long as dogs need time to understand and obey the orders. Trainers start with basic commands like sit, stand, come, or go.

When a dog starts obeying these, obedience classes advance and make the dog learn how to pick a ball when the owner throws it and some other basic tasks. Obedience classes also focus on making the dogs learn some interesting games to play with the owners.

Though this type of puppy class makes dogs quite obedient, puppy owners need to contribute equally. They should remain in contact with the obedience training coach and give the dog similar commands at home. It will help to train your dog faster.

Socialization Classes

Imagine staying in a single house for a long period of time, not in contact with more than three to four people, and when these people go to their jobs, you are all alone, having no one to talk to. Then you were suddenly taken to the market one day, won’t the crowds make you panic? New people and new environments – nothing seems familiar.

Now come back to reality; why does going to the market and facing crowds feel normal? It’s because you go to work every single day. Meet good as well as bad people daily. Hence, everything seems normal.

Apply the same scenario to your pup. He needs to socialize with other dogs. So that when you take him out to the market, he doesn’t panic.

Another advantage of socialization classes is that dogs learn basic training skills while being surrounded by distractions. So, you can take the pup to the dog park; he will play with you without being distracted by other puppies and people.

Private puppy training classes don’t help with socializing at all. It would be best if you definitely opted for group classes.

Hunting Dog Training

If you want to train your dog for hunting, you need to sign up for separate classes that are principally started for this purpose. The hunting dog course has the best trainers who teach a lot of things to the puppies, like socialization, loose leash walking, picking a dead bird without biting it, running in the woods, and definitely, there’s a lot more on the list.

In this session, socialization is not like the one mentioned above, in which a new dog familiarizes itself with other doggies. Instead, it is the one in which puppies get to see and learn to tackle wild animals.

Other Training Classes

There are many other training classes that you can opt for your dog. For instance, tracking teaches the dogs to sniff and track things. It can be helpful in hunting. Others include therapy training and agility training.

Private Training vs. Group Training

A comparison shows both types of classes have some pros and cons. Talking about the private training classes, puppies get 100% attention from the trainer, but in group training classes, the trainer has to deal with multiple dogs at a time, and neither of them gets full attention.

A private trainer will visit you at home while you have to take your dog to the designated area for the group training. Private classes have flexible schedules while you and your dog have to follow the timings of the group classes regularly.

Moreover, in private lessons, your dog will get the exact homework and tasks he needs to be trained in. While in the case of group classes, all the dogs get the same homework, no matter if your dog is an expert at it or knows nothing about it.

Talking about some advantages of group classes, dogs can socialize with other dogs, which is impossible in private training. In addition, your dog learns how to work in the presence of distractions.

Finally, in group classes, the training fee is divided among the members. In the case of private classes, a single person has to pay the whole amount for his dog.

How Much Do Training Classes Cost?

The cost of training classes varies from class to class and from trainer to trainer. According to HomeGuide, the latest cost of private classes ranges from $45 to more than $100.

On the other hand, group classes are cost-effective, and the dog trainer might charge each participant from $30 to $50. This is what dog owners have to pay hourly.

Per day it can cost more than $75, and per week, no dog trainer is going to settle for less than $500. Dog boot camps can charge $1250 or more per week. Similarly, a professional trainer charges more than an ordinary dog trainer.

In a nutshell, different dog trainers offer different training programs, and all of them differ in their costs.

Pros of Training Classes

Training dogs can be fruitful in terms of improving dogs’ behavior and come with the following side benefits.

Prepare Dogs for Competition

Puppy training programs are quite important when it comes to dog shows, obedience competitions, or sports competitions like treibball, dock jumping, surfing, flyball, etc. Trainers who use reward-based training methods with positive reinforcement are more likely to strengthen your puppy’s confidence in himself. For example, when he is praised and rewarded for doing a certain task, he will begin to like the task.

Trainers use their psyches to mold them into sports stars ultimately. With professional help, you can motivate your dog to complete even the most complex challenges and prepare him for any type of competition. Professional training can help your dog become a champion.

Eliminate Fear of Rescued Dogs

Training a rescue dog by yourself can be a bit complicated. If your dog has a history of abuse, he is likely to be fearful of humans. In addition, he may exhibit particular behavioral issues that necessitate a unique approach to teaching and learning.

In this scenario, you should not train him; instead, take a step back because it can be dangerous for both you and your dog. For example, a traumatized dog may appear aggressive, but he is actually afraid of socialization.

An investment in dog training classes can help solve this problem and make your dog learn socialization again.

Professional dog trainers know how to train a traumatized dog by establishing trust in order to diminish their fear. They build this confidence and trust through devotion which may be lacking in the pet parents.

The best trainers use a systematic and constructive training method that employs regulations and consistency to make dogs feel valued and protected. Being highly skilled, the training professionals patiently get to know each dog so that they can assess the level of training needed by him.

Training of Pet Parents

Puppy training can sometimes be more about training pet parents than training puppies. According to experts, the hands holding the other end of the leash are more important than the neck to which the leash is tied.

Training classes can make the dog owners learn their dog’s body language; it strengthens their bond. In addition, they learn all of the dos and don’ts of handling a puppy.

As the dog parent, you will be able to observe the behaviors of dogs belonging to different breeds. Seeing your dog improve faster than others will make you fall even more in love with him.

In addition, attending the training programs allows pet parents to learn all of the puppy training tips. When the sessions are no longer available, they can use these tips to continue training their dogs independently.

Cons of Training Classes

Puppy training classes are extremely beneficial and teach the pets some basics of living a tamed life. But there is always a dark side to the picture, right? So, here are some frequently observed downsides of puppy classes:

One Time Training

After getting satisfying results from one-time formal dog training, new puppy owners think that there is no need for training classes anymore. But that’s not the case.

Over time, dogs forget the rules, especially if the owners don’t have enough time to repeat the training techniques. Hence, in most cases, behavioral or obedience classes are not beneficial in the long run.

Fear of Unvaccinated Dogs

Unvaccinated dogs can get several infectious diseases from other dogs like Parvo. The disease is named after the name of the virus.

It can be fatal enough to cause death. If your dog is not vaccinated against the disease, he can get the virus from other pups in the training class. Similarly, if your dog gets the virus somehow, he can infect other dogs. Both the cases are unacceptable.

So the solution is to get the pup vaccinated before enrolling in any training program. Vaccinated dogs have no risks in socializing with unvaccinated dogs.

Vaccines have dead viruses inside, which stimulate the production of antibodies and prepare the immune system to kill the virus as soon as it enters the body. Most of the puppy training classes won’t let the dog join if he is not vaccinated, but even if there is no restriction on vaccination, don’t take the risk.

Bully Dogs

Often pet parents think of bully dogs as alpha dogs and take no notice of a dog being bullied by another. Alpha dogs are like the leaders of the group; other members of the group have to follow him no matter what. Alpha dogs are like popular bossy dogs who don’t force their bossiness over other canines.

Though they often beat the dogs who ignore the rules, they never bully the dogs, especially those that don’t belong to their pack. On the other hand, Bully dogs observe weak puppies and start beating and biting them.

As a result, the bullied dog can suffer depression and remain scared of other canines. Such puppies cannot socialize with others and remain lonely for the remaining part of their lives.

Though a good trainer will figure out the problem and will train both dogs – the bully dog to become compassionate and the timid dog to become strong.

Conclusion

Dog training classes are worth your time, money, and efforts. There are different training classes in which the dogs learn different things like obedience training, behavioral training, socialization, and hunting training classes.

Different trainers and programs cost differently. Private and group training has some advantages over each other while at the same time have some cons as well.

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