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Private Dog Training vs. Group Classes

When it comes to getting Dog Training Services in Denver it is incredibly important to go with a company you can trust. Once you find a company who fits you and your dog well, the next question is what service should you go with? Knowing the pros and cons to different dog training options is the best way to make an informed decision about your dog's training. While training classes were once all the rage, the modern person simply does not have the time to fit in driving to an hour long class where they may or may not learn the training skills they were seeking in the first place. The best way to meet both yours and your dog's needs is often times private training lessons. Group Classes Can be Challenging If you've ever taken a puppy to group training classes then you know, it's not what you would imagine. If you haven't, think about what a class full of high energy pre-schoolers looks like, typically complete chaos. Now these are puppies we're talking about so just imagine how much more complicated things get. The list of things that get in the way of your dog's learning can become incredibly lengthy. Trying to keep your own puppy focused can be tough enough without adding in accidents from dogs who got a little too nervous, barking dogs who just can't seem to calm down, and even aggressive dogs who have not been properly socialized and are now a danger to others. With everything going on in a group class, the best of instructors will try their hardest to keep all of the dogs on track and engaged. But the truth of the matter is, there's usually only one instructor there. If you have a classes of 10 or 15 then it would be physically impossible for them to take the time to make sure every dog is learning. All it takes is one dog who won't stop barking through the class or two dogs to get into a fight and they'll have to stop the entire class to address the problem at hand. To no fault of their own, managing a group training class can become overwhelming for the instructor, and underwhelming for the hopeful owner looking to get their pup started out on a good path in life. Why Professionals Recommend Private Lessons In the early stages on your dog's training, they will be more likely to make mistakes and they will become more easily distracted. These are two of the main reasons why private lessons are usually the best choice. Making mistakes while learning is all a part of the learning process. Dogs are not born knowing how to come when called or how to walk nicely on leash. Mistakes are necessary for learning to take place. We teach them skills over time with a trial and error process. The problem with group classes is that there is no room for mistakes. The instructor won't have time to go around to every dog and help fix the problem they're having. They have a certain amount of time to teach a behavior and then they have to move onto the next one. If your dog didn't get the lesson in that allotted time, they have now fallen behind. Sometimes a simple adjustment of your body language or tone of voice is enough to correct the mistake, but if your instructor doesn't have time to help show you the correct way, then it's a lost cause. With private lessons this is never the case. Your trainer will be working with your dog one-on-one to make sure they learn the correct behaviors and skills. When they make mistakes, your trainer will help guide them to the right decision. There's never any rush to move on to something else without making sure that all the essential training is covered. Private Lessons Avoid Distractions Private lessons provide the opportunity to learn in a distraction-free environment. When your dog is starting to learn anything new, there's always a heightened risk of distractions derailing the training. It's very common for puppies to become easily distracted especially considering they have such a short attention span in the first few months. When you work with a private trainer, you don't have to worry about distractions getting in the way of your dog's learning. Starting out in a quiet, familiar environment gives dogs the very best chance to succeed with their training goals. Private lessons enable your dog to learn in their own home environment, where they can be empowered to learn more, and be surrounded by the people who love them most. Find out more about our Private Dog Training Services, or sign up for an evaluation to get advice on which training is best for your dog.

Healthy Homemade Dog Treats

Check out these healthy and delicious homemade dog treats to help your pup love learning! Recipes Include: Peanut Butter Paws, Crunchy Oatmeal Cookies, Playful Pumpkin Bones. Peanut Butter Paws INGREDIENTS 3 cups old-fashioned oats 1 banana 1/3 cup peanut butter 1 egg 2 tbsp flour (optional) INSTRUCTIONS Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside. Add oats to a food processor for 2 - 3 mins, until oats are almost flour consistency. Add peanut butter, banana and egg to food processor. Mix until dough looks uniform. Roll the dough out to roughly 1/8" thick. Use 2 tbsp flour if too sticky. Cut treats out with paw print cookie cutter and place on baking sheet. Bake for 16 - 18 minutes, rotate trays halfway through.​ Crunchy Oatmeal Cookies INGREDIENTS 2 cups whole wheat flour 1 cup oats ½ heaping cup of peanut butter ½ tsp ground cinnamon 1½ cup warm water INSTRUCTIONS Preheat the oven to 350°F Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. Mix all of the dry ingredients into a medium size bowl. Add in peanut butter and warm water. Mix everything together. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough gently a few times. Roll out the dough ¼ to ½” thickness. Cut the dough lengthwise into strips, and then crosswise into bite size squares. Lay them on the parchment covered baking sheet and bake for 30-45 minutes. Playful Pumpkin Bones INGREDIENTS 2/3 cup pumpkin puree 1/4 cup peanut butter 2 large eggs 2 1/2 – 3 cups whole wheat flour INSTRUCTIONS Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In mixing bowl beat pumpkin puree, peanut butter and eggs. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups flour at low speed until uniform. Add additional 1/4 cup flour at a time until the dough is no longer sticky. On a lightly floured surface knead the dough 3-4 times until it comes together. Roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using bone shaped cookie cutters, cut out bone shapes and place onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes.​

Top Ten Training Tips

When Should You Start Dog Training Classes?

Bringing home a pet is exciting and the first few days are often the best. You might be laughing with a little puppy, or cleaning up after them. If you get an older dog, you may be hoping that they are somewhat trained and obedient. When you start to settle into life with your new pet, you will need to decide when to start training. Dog training can be easy for some dogs, but incredibly difficult for others. Dog Training Classes are the best way to go, but you might be wondering when to start these classes and what they entail. Puppy Training If you get a dog as a puppy, then the earlier the better to start teaching obedience commands and socialization. Puppies do have short attention spans, but even from a very early age puppies can learn socialization skills and can pick up on basic obedience commands. You might be able to teach them to sit and stay, at this age. This is the ideal time to start training using positive reinforcement training. This is also the time where you can potty train, and begin socialization. This will allow them to learn more quickly and become well-rounded dogs. ​ Formal Dog Training 11 to 12 weeks is the age where formal training may begin. These classes will begin to teach your dog proper techniques for basic and more advanced commands. A dog training professional can also help you to learn potential bad behaviors or training concerns before they become an issue. One-on-one training or immersion training is incredible for avoiding distractions in a controlled environment. ​ Why You Shouldn’t Wait Some dog schools recommend waiting for training until the dog is four to six months of age. If you skip the early times in a puppy’s life, then they have the opportunity to develop behaviors that might eventually need to be addressed in the future. This can mean anxiety, aggression, or a variety of other problems. By training good behaviors from the start, you can often avoid this. Before starting training, talk to your vet. Ensure that your puppy is healthy enough to begin training and has started their vaccination series. ​ Training for Rescue Dogs If you are a dog owner who found or bought a dog from a rescue, then you will have a different timeline than those with puppies. Depending on the background of the dog, you might also require different training. Once you are ready to begin training classes give us a call. We can help you decide the best option for you and your dog. All of our trainers use positive reinforcement dog training methods. Contact us today.

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