Skipping puppy classes? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Skipping puppy classes?

So "everyone" seems to think that puppy classes are a must, but I feel like they would actually be a bad idea. Am I crazy? I want to spend time training my puppy to handle the situations he will have to deal with as part of our family, surely that is best done in the actual environments he will be in and with distractions I can completely control? I don't see it as necessary for him to mess about with other puppies picking up bad habits and diseases, I would prefer to take him to visit stable adult dogs that can be good role models. As I live in the middle of nowhere, literally deep in the forest, my choice of puppy classes is seriously limited within an hours drive. Surely a poorly run class with different training strategy to what I am already doing would do more harm than good? I guess I am looking for support in my decision to home school my puppy, but if you have counter arguments please convince me!
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 05:25 PM
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Iíve never taken a puppy to puppy classes, just regular beginning obedience classes when my dogs have been at least 5 or 6 months old. I donít really get the point of puppy classes.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 05:49 PM
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I don't do "puppy classes" that include puppies playing or interacting together. I do puppy class so that my dog will start learning the basics of obedience with distractions. I guess you would call it a beginner class vs a puppy class but it's always been a group of puppies
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 05:53 PM
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Focus on bonding and engagement. Play, try to work in some obedience or whatever but there's no need for puppy class.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 06:18 PM
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I have a 19wk pup. Have never done puppy class and will never do one

Like thegooseman90 said, just work of playing and bonding

There're lots of training videos available on YouTube. Watch a few, and decide which style best works for you

Is there a popular park in your area you could go to often? One thing, called Sit on Dog, is pretty much just you and pup sit on a bench and people/ dog watch
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 06:31 PM
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I too live in the middle of almost no where finding classes and/or trainers has been really difficult. I do not have any problem issues with my pup now 11 months, would just be nice for guidance sometimes as this is my first dog. I like you use my real world as my training ground. The only down side is I have a hard time finding dog distractions to train around. I do not know anyone with dogs and an hour away we do have a dog park but it is really not set up in a way that makes training that good, but I make it work when I can. My pup is over the top in love with other dogs so it is my greatest challenge. So far just exposing my pup to my world and teaching him what I expect as best I can is working out well. I may be slow but slowly we will get where we are going (prays lol) I will say it is great living in the woods with a dog I love to see him run free through our forest and he loves it as well.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 06:33 PM
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Most puppy classes are chaotic and badly managed (my experience). In the past I took one and decided not to take part in "pass the puppy" (in which everyone handles each others pup, incl. treats!) and I also declined the free play sessions as it was mainly turning all the little airheads loose together. This didn't go well with the instructor so it was the last time I ever went.
I do take them to the basic classes and after these decide what fits the pup best.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-29-2017, 06:57 PM
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I never took Inga to any classes. I trained her myself. I had to train myself to train her. Now she knows 30 commands, even from distance by hand signals. I understand that a lot of people don't have time for this and get trainers and classes. My advice is keep away from dog parks. Especially puppies and youngsters.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-30-2017, 12:50 AM
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My dog graduates from a STAR puppy class next week.
I donít think itís something you have to do. I unknowingly bought my dog from a questionable breeder and noticed some temperament issues early on. I donít believe Iím experienced enough to handle temperament problems without a trainer.

She seemed to enjoy it. Weíll move on to the Good Citizen class next.

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-30-2017, 04:21 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all your support, very nice to hear I'm not the only one who doesn't see puppy classes as essential! There is a localish gsd club I might join when puppy is a bit older. They do different courses for tracking, agility etc. For now just focusing on potty training, calm behaviour, crate training, teaching puppy his name means to focus on me and general bonding. It's only day 5!
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