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Anyone that does NOT go to obedience class?

2138 Views 30 Replies 26 Participants Last post by  Jupiter's Human
Anyone that does not use a trainer or take their dog to obedience class? It seems like it's just about unheard of these days but I was just wondering and what are your reasons?
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We tried to do it ourselves, but as first-time golden owners we didn't last long. It's just too hard to know what to do and how to train properly, I think. We mastered potty training, shake and sit on our own. After that we needed serious help! Now I just go to obedience class because I'm an addict and I love it!
I took an obedience class back when I was in jr. high, so maybe 10 years ago. After that it was a really informal 4-H stuff. Other than that I am self taught. Kyra probably knows 30+ commands and I am happy with that. The reason I don't go to a trainer is I don't need to. There are no behavior issues I can't solve and I can't think of any trainers in the area. I think it helps that I have worked with horses for a while. A lot of the training transfers.
Both DH and I have a lot of exprience training dogs since we have both had dogs our entire lives, so we didn't feel the need to take Tucker to obedience classes. We brought him home last year in late September and he was totally housebroken by early November and hasn't had an accident since. He knows many commands and has great recall, so we are very happy with that.

Our GSD, on the other hand, was enrolled in several training classes when she was a puppy.
we didn't go anywhere simply because its no place to go.Petco was out of questions.We have training place in town but it will take me about an hour and half just to get there.Not possible with other kids that i have.I had no problem teaching Honey manners and we still do.I can trust her without leash.she comes right,away,know sit,stay,down, shake. Still working on not getting over excited when people come in our house .But hey ,its always something to work on.
We have not gone to obedience classes or gotten any training for our pups simply because it just costs too much. We are a hard working family, but in NYC training costs a fortune. Owning a home and running the house takes alot of money. If we run into problems (hope not), in the future and we feel it is a NECESSITY, then our priorities will have to change.
We haven't taken Molson to classes. We found him very easy to train (he still needs ongoing work with recall and stay, however) and since we don't get home from work until 6:30 and most classes start at 7 are at least 15-20 minutes away, it just isn't feasible for us.
a couple we know with a young lab are following a book (labs for dummies, maybe?). they are being very concientious about doing the training.

Due to work shifts, they can't attend class together & this method is keeping them "on the same page". and having fun!
That's sort of how it is for me, the times aren't convenient and when I talked to the trainer at petco I was not impressed. She was one of those ones you could tell she just loves her job! Trapper too is not the greatest at the stay command but I do work with him quite a bit and he does sit, lay down, get down, up, shake, come here, and knows lots of other things such as when I say where are your treats? He runs and waits by the pantry, lol. I think I've done decent on my own. :)
We live in a very rural area and there is no training available locally. My boy came to live with me at 2 years old and he ran free in the neighborhood with zero guidance until then. He has been easy enough to train the basics, sit, stay, come, and is very good on a leash, which is all that I feel is needed.
I did take Sam to an obedience class offered by a local Breeder. It was a nightmare for Sam and myself, but I did learn the techniques and then used them at home. Sam learned quickly, once away from the distraction of the class, and I used the same techniques for Ike...also here at home. If you are consistent, training from home is fine.

The nightmare? Sam was 6 months old in a class of 6 month old pups. A female in the class was in heat and Sam was not yet neutered. Well, he proceeded to act like a very bad boy and I could not contain him. The instructor also had trouble containing him and proceeded to ridicule me for having an intact male. I was a newbie dog mom and thought that I'd done something wrong. I stayed long enough to learn her techniques and then worked from home. I also scheduled Sam's neuter surgery. Back then, I guess waiting for a male to mature was not considered proper protocol for non-breeding males.
I do all training myself, but I am very experienced. However, I trained my first dog at age ten (with no help from my parents) with books, which were unfortunately, back then, all negative methods. She was a Miniature Schnauzer and always very obedient! I've never taken a basic obedience class I don't think. I simply drop into advanced/prep for obedience ring after showing the instructors that my dogs are already trained.

I think doing it yourself requires an understanding of dogs that most first time pet owners may not have. There's nothing wrong with needing help. I can train dogs, and it came naturally to me. But there's plenty in life that I couldn't do without help!
Trapper is not my first dog, I had a collie for 11 years and was only 9 when I got her, another situation where there was no help from my parents. Trapper is my first Golden and I have not had a dog in 7 years.
In years past, we took our Lab through intermediate classes and had a lot of fun. Went to field training events, too. But now with our 3 yo Golden, we live in a remote area where there are no obedience or other classes. Fortunately, she came to us as an adult and already very well trained by her good breeder. I do remember the chaos of trying to get a young pup into the training room past all the other dogs, though! She would go bonkers, and she was so strong!
I probably should have with Birdie, but didn't. I thought I could do it myself and I did OK, but certainly would have done better with a little help. With my newly adopted lab, he is 14 months old and already settled. The previous owners left me a set of instructions with the commands he knew. And he knows most but I'm following up on those. I'm way ahead of the game with the training of the previous owners. Got lucky with this one.:) So no, I have no plans to go to any classes with Micah.
That's sort of how it is for me, the times aren't convenient and when I talked to the trainer at petco I was not impressed. She was one of those ones you could tell she just loves her job!
I had the same feeling from the people at our local PetSmart. They hold no special certification, they are younger than I am (I'm 25), and walk around the store specifically trying to lure me into signing up for their classes. I've been at the store while their training sessions have been going on and it was absolute mayhem in that ring! Holy cow, all the dogs were barking and he was not helping by yelling at them! :doh:

My family has had a series of 4 goldens since I was 10 and I've had quite a bit of experience there teaching them manners, so I found that experience has helped quite a bit with Molson.
I believe in Obedience classes not just for the training but for good socialization. Of course if you have an inexperienced or crappy trainer/teacher then that part doesn't work very well either. A free for all labeled socialization is NOT!

We trained all of our dogs in obedience classes through our local obedience club. We are very lucky to have such a wonderful inexpensive training group here with very experienced trainers who are all volunteers and do it because they love dogs.
Selka went through training including CD but after Gunner's first round of beginner obedience classes into the advanced, he began to show the signs of anxiety and anxiety aggression. Continuing to work with him there and use what I consider negative training, did not work.

We stopped the class, continued training at home using very positive reinforcement. He is very well trained and is much better when around a strange dog but he is never going to be comfortable with strange dogs so we don't go where there are many of them (dog parks, dog events). The boys get plenty of socialization with dogs we already know.
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Didn't take Scout--haven't taken her--there were no options. Not even puppy class :( Not that I needed help as a trainer, but I think the socialization is invaluable. Plus, as much as I train it is pretty impossible to get that same atmosphere of distractions to work around (but if you are not going to go into obedience, perhaps not as needed). She can hold an awesome stay at the park with squirrels, kids, me jumping around throwing stuff....put her in a stay next to a strange dog? Little bit scarier, but where else could we practice it?
I agree about socialization, but my dogs are very well socialized without going to any classes. Not everyone has the opportunities I do though (busy city, tourist trap, great dog parks) so in that case I do agree it is worth it for socialization alone.
All of my dogs go to classes, because I am the instructor, and have been training for 25 years... Even given that, I cannot say with certainty that there will never be a situation that I would not consult another trainer or behaviorist.
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