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Discussion Starter #1
Like the title says I am looking for a trainer in the Chicago suburbs. I was looking into Bill Kulla but I can't fit his schedule into mine due to him being over an hour away. Any recommendations are greatly appreciated
 

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I suggest you look up Chicagocanine's posts. She has mentioned some trainers in the your area in some past threads. Also you could try sending her a pm.
 

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What sort of training? Are you looking for SchH/IPO (what Kulla does) or are you looking for something else.. obedience, agility, rally, nosework, ????
 

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Not sure where you're at, but I've been looking in to Topline German Shepherd Club of Illinois out of Willowbrook. They're the group that always does demonstrations at the IKC show every year, among other events. I still have yet to go visit during actual training (we're actually hoping to go Monday), but I've talked to a couple of the trainers and have liked what they've said. They seem (to me, on paper, anyway) to be one of the more progressive groups in the area as far as positive reinforcement training. Although they will allow prong collars and corrections, they make it very clear that it's up to you what methods you use on your dog, and they REALLY don't strike me as the types to go overboard with the harsh corrections. This mentality seems like it can be hard to come by with some SchH clubs, the sport has such a deep tradition that it can be hard, sometimes, to find people who have been doing it for 20+ years that are open to new ideas when the methods they've been using are getting results. Just my 2 cents on it!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Not sure where you're at, but I've been looking in to Topline German Shepherd Club of Illinois out of Willowbrook. They're the group that always does demonstrations at the IKC show every year, among other events. I still have yet to go visit during actual training (we're actually hoping to go Monday), but I've talked to a couple of the trainers and have liked what they've said. They seem (to me, on paper, anyway) to be one of the more progressive groups in the area as far as positive reinforcement training. Although they will allow prong collars and corrections, they make it very clear that it's up to you what methods you use on your dog, and they REALLY don't strike me as the types to go overboard with the harsh corrections. This mentality seems like it can be hard to come by with some SchH clubs, the sport has such a deep tradition that it can be hard, sometimes, to find people who have been doing it for 20+ years that are open to new ideas when the methods they've been using are getting results. Just my 2 cents on it!
Who did you contact there? There is a long list of names and no clue which to contact.
 

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For obedience or for protection training? I think that you can shoot Pat B an email and she can assist with either. I went there one time for obedience training and I was told that my dog had to have a prong. I bought a prong for that reason. Obedience is held in a barn, I really liked the setting, but out of 15 dogs there, about 3 were not aggressive. Mine was 7 months old and they had to put us in a corner away from the other dogs. Lots of them had on muzzles to. I also took mine there to get evaluated for schutzhund. Back then it was at a outdoor place in Chicago Ridge, but I think that has since changed. I have emailed them again because I wanted to go back there. My concerns were the aggressive dogs there and the use of a prong. They told me that she didn't have to wear the prong and that they don't always have aggressive dogs, but they are one of the few clubs that do allow them. The guy that does the evaluations for shutzhund is good and knows what he's doing. There is also another group in the West Chicago area that trains every Saturday, that is Turner Junction working dog club. Some Saturdays, there are about 20 people there. Its a very long day. The guy that trains for them comes from Indiana. I stopped and observed them about a month ago. I talked to a couple of the people. Neither group made me feel welcome. They were both very stand offish and that is not something I can deal with.
 

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Who did you contact there? There is a long list of names and no clue which to contact.
I talked to both Irene and Jason, Irene for longer. We're going tomorrow to check out the training. I really loved the way she talked about motivation and how the primary focus of the training is to motivate through positive reinforcement rather than punishment. She also said they don't tolerate 2 things, people who back-stab and feel they have to put others down, and people who feel they have to be harsh with their dogs to put them in their place. Both things I really loved! Oh! And she also mentioned how important it was to find a helper who knew what they were doing and knew all the subtleties of training, because it's really easy to ruin a dog if you're a novice and don't know exactly what to look for. Then she went on to talk about how some trainers will talk about X dog or Y dog just not being meant for the sport, when really it's that the TRAINER needs to change up the tactics and motivation. Personally, unless I see something in the training that I absolutely don't agree with when we visit, this definitely sounds like the place for us.
 

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Talked with Irene a few weeks ago. Very nice woman. Went to the facility they train at only to wait 35 minutes and no one showed. I called the number for the head trainer only to get an attitude and make me feel that I was a bother. I even brought two interested friends with pups. So piss poor customer service cost them 3 new customers. The search continues
 

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Get in touch with Johnathan in the link I provided. He recently located to the Chicago area, but has experience with working dogs. If you aren't on facebook, here is his website: Chicago Canine Company (773)231-7031
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Nope nothing yet. Considering biting the bullet and taking the hour drive each way to go see Bill Kulla.
 
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