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Best dog obedience classes?

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Best dog obedience classes?

Postby chickenturkey » Thu Jun 07, 2007 1:41 pm

I'm going to be adopting a puppy next week and I'm would love to hear some opinions on the best training classes (or in-home training, possibly) in the area.

I've scanned the other dog threads and it doesn't look as though this question has been addressed--sorry if this winds up being a repeat post!

Thanks in advance...
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Postby bigdumbgirl » Thu Jun 07, 2007 2:13 pm

The dog classes in the basement of Noah's Ark are pretty good.
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Postby Chuck_Schick » Thu Jun 07, 2007 2:20 pm

First off, kudos to you for doing the right thing by your future pup. Too many people adopt without making this important commitment, which often ends in potentially wonderful pets being surrendered to a shelter for some behavioral problem that could easily have been avoided.

I don't think the place where our dog went to puppy kindergarten is still in biz, but in general, I would highly recommend that you go to a class rather than look for an in-home trainer, the reason being that socialization (with both other dogs and other people) is one of the most important aspects of training a puppy.

If I can come up with a more specific recommendation or resource for you, I'll post it here. Good luck and good for you for going the adoption route. My pound mutt is the best. If there were another just like her, I'd adopt in a heartbeat (though my wife might have something to say about that).
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Postby supaunknown » Thu Jun 07, 2007 2:25 pm

The Michael Vick School of Canine Controlis supposed to be top notch. They even have their own rape stand.
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Postby buckyor » Thu Jun 07, 2007 3:17 pm

supaunknown wrote:The Michael Vick School of Canine Controlis supposed to be top notch. They even have their own rape stand.


I heard the graduation rate wasn't so good.
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Postby bluethedog » Thu Jun 07, 2007 4:19 pm

I recommend Dog's Best Friend. I took my Husky to basic obedience and agility classes with them in 2000.

The obedience class was great at training all us owners. The first class we did not even bring our dogs.
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Postby chickenturkey » Thu Jun 07, 2007 6:39 pm

Thanks for the responses...I'm going to check *some* of the places out this week.

Has anyone heard of Blue Dog Training? Apparently a trainer comes out to your house for a 2-hour basic training/puppy acclimation session when you first get the dog. It's not designed to replace obedience classes, but just to show you the basics before the classes start.

As a first-time dog owner, I want to make sure I don't make some crucial mistake in the first few weeks! I've only had cats, and all you have to do with them is show them the litter box and hope they like you.
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Postby bluethedog » Thu Jun 07, 2007 7:31 pm

chickenturkey wrote:Has anyone heard of Blue Dog Training?

I've heard Blue Dog is good too, and very busy. You better arrange something soon if you go with them.
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Postby snoqueen » Fri Jun 08, 2007 12:33 am

Blue Dog - yes

The Dog Den -- big yes

Dog's Best Friend -- yes

The Badger Kennel Club also used to have puppy socialization classes, which were LOADS of fun (and informative) if you have a new puppy.

Noah's Ark -- a nightmare. Not recommended.

(speaking from experience here)
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Postby Athena » Fri Jun 08, 2007 10:19 am

I recommend Madcity Dog Training. They have a great puppy class that includes socialization and from there you can chose to do more obedience training or even agility and flyball. It turned out that my Westie was horrid at obedience but great at agility. So we took another agility class there and it was really nice.
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Postby juanton » Fri Jun 08, 2007 10:21 am

I took 2 Huskies to Noah's Ark for basic obedience. Barb and her German Shepherd run a tight ship there. Not for slackers though, we dropped out a few classes from the end with both dogs.

We took our youngest Husky to some place off of Baldwin, just west of Willy St. He aced puppy 1 and 2. They also had Sunday morning hang out sessions for all dogs attending their classes. It was a pretty cool place. I'm not sure if it's still there.
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Postby Chuck_Schick » Fri Jun 08, 2007 3:14 pm

juanton wrote:We took our youngest Husky to some place off of Baldwin, just west of Willy St. He aced puppy 1 and 2. They also had Sunday morning hang out sessions for all dogs attending their classes. It was a pretty cool place. I'm not sure if it's still there.

The Dog Spot, was it? I don't think it exists any longer. Whatever it was called, we took our pup there for the 1st and 2nd level classes. The first class was taught by Sarah Kalnajs, a protégé of Patricia McConnell, who was superb. The second-level course was fine, but the trainer wasn't quite up to her level.

I mean, this woman had taught her Shelties to put their toys away when they were done playing with them. Anyone who pulls off that little feat wins "dog whisperer" status in my book.

Ms. McConnell runs Dog's Best Friend. Ms. Kalnajs runs Blue Dog. So I'd say you're good to go with either of those. Both women are a little nutty, but that's hardcore dog folk for ya.

As for not wanting to make any mistakes those first few days, the best advice I can give you is to load up on Nature's Miracle (or Simple Solution) and to never, never, never raise your voice (or hand, or a newspaper) to your pup for doing what Nature calls upon us all to do. Stick to positive reinforcement, and you're off to a good start. Also, if you're getting a pup young enough that it's not yet housebroken, I'd strongly encourage you to consider crate training.
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Postby chickenturkey » Fri Jun 08, 2007 3:56 pm

Perfect--we actually decided this morning to call up Blue Dog for an in-home puppy session right away, and Dog's Best Friend for classes starting next month. Judging by the opinions here, we made some good choices.

Housetraining advice duly noted--thanks!

Can't wait till she's old enough to go to some of the dog parks that everyone's talking about...
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