What do you want in a training facility? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
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What do you want in a training facility?

Sometime in the next few years, I'd like to open a training facility. While my finances for this endeavor right now are nil, I figured I can best use this time working on a good business plan. So, for my planning phase, I'd like to know what both the average pet owner and the avid trainer would like to see in a dog training facility.
What kinds of classes would you like offered?
Do you want classes during the day, evening, weekends?
What "venue" do you train for (sch, akc, ukc, nadac, etc.)?
Would you utilize seminars if they were offered?
Would you utilize fun matches/correctionals?
Do you want your instructors to be certified by an organization, or are you happy with their on the job/life experience?

Any input you have would be appreciated. Thanks!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 01:32 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

I am one of those crazy dog show people and compete all the time in AKC obedience, will start competing in AKC agility in May, and have my BH in SchH and hope to get my SchH 1 this year.

I can tell you that the larger dog schools here in town offer day and evening classes in rally, obedience, conformation, and agility, and they do have advanced classes for the competition people. They all offer run throughs and open ring time. Most of them will allow various clubs to rent out the buildings for fun matches on the weekends. I go to run throughs, open ring time, and fun matches as needed and find them all extremely important. I have noticed nobody has seminars for competition people in any of these sports. There are a few behavior ones that are sort of a joke.

My personal opinion on certified trainers isn't a positive one and have found they are only in the pet only type of classes where only a minimal amount, if any, of dog training actually happens. I am looking for instructors that have titled many dogs of their own to a very high level and are able to teach what they know to others.

As for SchH, I haven't seen any schools that offer it along with any other sports. It seems to be an individual club thing and is held outdoors in the summer and indoors in the winter. I do go to SchH seminars when possible.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 01:47 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

Quote:
Quote:What kinds of classes would you like offered?
APO answer - basic obedience, intermediate socailization and advanced family obedience (like how to maintain a position when the doorbell rings).

AT answer - everything!!

Quote:
Quoteo you want classes during the day, evening, weekends?
APO & AT - YES!

Quote:
Quote:What "venue" do you train for (sch, akc, ukc, nadac, etc.)?
APO - Huh?? I train in whatever the dog likes to do.

AT - Right now Schutzhund but I will be trying most everything!


Quote:
Quote:Would you utilize seminars if they were offered?
APO & AT - it would depend on what they were about and WHO was giving them.

Quote:
Quote:Would you utilize fun matches/correctionals?
APO - Huh?? Maybe if I knew more about them and what they were for.

AT - Yes!

Quote:
Quoteo you want your instructors to be certified by an organization, or are you happy with their on the job/life experience?
APO - (I'm guessing they will be happy with just the cert)

AT - I prefer life experience over certs. If I want to become competitive in agility I'd want to learn it from someone who has trained, handled and titled their own dogs.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 02:34 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

I would love somewhere that offered Saturday classes at a reasonable price! They are few and far between around here...and those that do exist require vaccinations up the wazoo so I won't go there. I'm not gonna over vaccinate just to go to a class. UGh!

Melissa & the Girls
*Grace, 7 yo GSD*
*Kira, 3 yo GSD*
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 02:43 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

There is a facility near me that has been in business a long time. They offer pet obedience and agility.
They used to have a schutzhund club but the training director cancelled, because the members were 99% beginners and did not stick with it.
They allow use of the agility field for $10/hour outside of class. I do not know if they offer this to everyone, or just clients.
Classes are on weekends and evenings mostly. Treats, collars, and leashes can be purchased during class. LOTS of people do this.
They show up at the local KC matches.
They also board dogs.
The website could be more UTD, but it helps when I want to contact them about something and don't feel the need to find a phone book http://harvardsk9center.com/

For myself, I could care less about "certifications" but I do want a trainer who has titled higher than I in my venue, and also who has attended other seminars.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 02:48 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

What are 3 OB titles in the sport of schutzhund?


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 03:03 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

Forgot to add ...

APO - I would like a place that offers SUPERVISED doggie play groups.

AT - I want a place that I can rent by the 1/2 hour, for practice. Sometimes just the building, sometimes the building and equipment.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 03:43 PM
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

Well, I'll just tell you what my training facility DOES have because I like it well enough:

Indoor building - various surfaces on the floor, tethering stations mounted into the studs of the wall (GOT to have these!!), heated/cooled

Outdoor fenced area - used for agility and rally so the dogs are prepared for indoor AND outdoor shows

The classes offered are puppy, advanced puppy, basic obedience, intermediate obedience/CGC, advanced skills, intro to rally, advanced rally, APDT rally, flyball, conformation, beginner agility, advanced beginner agility, intermediate agility. I have attended ALL of these classes at least once except for flyball and conformation (starting in March), and beginner OB (skipped that with Coke and Kenya).

I like that our trainers have no blanket requirements about tools/methods, but are not afraid to stand up and call out the owner if the tool/method is not appropriate for the dog or situation. The main trainer keeps up with new books, DVDs, seminars....and has a library of information she will loan out.

I have to go somewhere else for SchH and tracking, but I'd rather belong to more than one club with good trainers, than a single club with trainers who are good enough at everything but not stellar at anything, if that makes sense.

Our club has classes on nights and weekends. The owner (who is a friend) will reschedule classes based on when people can/want to come. She also sets up practice groups where we can use the facility to prepare for trials.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2009, 08:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: What do you want in a training facility?

Thanks. These answers are very helpful. Keep them coming!
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