German Shepherd Dog Forums - View Single Post - Training yourself vs going to classes...
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Old 03-22-2014, 12:37 AM   #8 (permalink)
Serbrider
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I have an 11 week old girl who is getting pretty far in her basic obedience training... and I did it all myself, with the distraction of a cat and my older dog (who has manners, but will slowly inch her way over in front of the puppy while sitting pretty and wanting a treat). I don't have the money to take training classes. I plan on doing some workshops or something to get involved in some sort of sport (meaning agility or competitive obedience or something, not necessarily schutzhund or bitework type stuff) and in our primary goal right now, which is getting her Canine Good Citizenship and her approved and registered as a working therapy dog.
This is my first puppy that I get to raise all by myself the way I want to though (I'm only 21, got my first dog when I was 12, still have her, trained her mostly myself, but it's far from perfect). Apart from the neighbor's constantly loose dogs, she hasn't had a lot of training related socialization. Though, we are at the point where if I call her attention and ask her to "sit" or "down" or even a tiny bit of "stay" with the neighbor's dog vying for her attention, she will mostly listen to me and do so. Still needs more of that time working with those distractions (she just wants to see the world, so especially if we're going to a new place, distractions are a big deal to her, but slow and steadily working on that. And every day we improve).


As I said, this will be my first puppy I get to raise exactly how I want. So, while not every dog is the same, I'm interested in seeing how she turns out based on my training methods, diet, etc. I've worked with friend's dogs before (who all lost everything when I stopped working with them because their owners didn't keep up with it), but yeah.


I'm just asking the question because I had contacted my local evaluator for Therapy Dogs International, asking her what sorts of conditioning and training she recommended, and if there were any workshops or classes I should definitely take before we start the testing process. Her answer was to get my pup in obedience classes once she's 6 months old. Now, apart from basic temperament, breed, and age, I hadn't said anything about my dog. So understandable that she would suggest classes... but yeah. Sorta got me to thinking... since I've always just read books, watched youtube videos from trainers, and just worked with a bunch of dogs (only one of which was mine) in the past... and never been to any actual classes or workshops or anything.
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