Couldn't you just train my dog for me?
Most behavior problems are a result of interactions between the animal, the owner and the environment. Giving your pet to someone else to “fix” the problem is rarely successful because these three elements aren’t addressed. Owners need to work with the animal in the home environment.
While in theory it sounds great to send your dog to someone for training, in reality, it's both ends of the leash who really need the training - most importantly, the human end. It would be more practical to send the humans to my house for training and then send them back home to apply what they learned on the dog. It would work better!
Be realistic. Board and train is a jump start to the training you will do with your dog, not instead of.
You are currently spending time with your dog and your dog is learning from every moment it spends with you, whether you are consciously "training" or not. The key isn't making time for training sessions, but making every minute's interaction a quality training moment. Other than making time for the few hours of class with your dog, the real and most valuable training happens in normal day-to-day living with your dog.
I could charge you a nice figure per week to train your dog for you and he and I could develop a lovely working relationship ... but no matter how many hundreds of dollars you spend having your dog trained, he will only learn the mechanics. That's the easy part. The relationship and bond that you build through understanding each other is priceless and invaluable.
You could send your child to school to learn French, but if you don't speak French, you still can't converse with him. His few weeks of French studies would quickly deteriorate once he got home unless you also took lessons and continued to practice with him. You might learn the mechanics, but the understanding of the techniques and their application in real life is still lacking. You will still have to make the time to learn it yourself AND practice with your dog.
Photo of "Fez" courtesy of LeeAnn Heringer
Your dog is only a puppy for a short time, don't entrust his little brain to a stranger. The little bit of work you put in now is an investment for his lifetime. I hope we'll see you in classes!
If you are currently enrolled or pre-enrolled in a training class, we do offer private lessons where we teach your dog while you observe. As your dog progresses, we coach you on maintaining his performance. Your dog benefits by learning from a skilled and experienced dog trainer. Your dog is spared the pitfalls of you learning to be a dog trainer while at the same time trying to teach your dog. Individual sessions are available weekday afternoons at our training studio by appointment.
This handout may be reprinted in its entirety for distribution free of charge and with full credit given:
© CAROL A. BYRNES "DIAMONDS IN THE RUFF" Training for Dogs & Their People -
ditr_training @ hotmail.com - http://www.diamondsintheruff.com