When I want to teach something new to the dogs or I am stuck in understanding how to train a behavior, the first thing I do is search for a positive reinforcement training class or workshop to attend. I know there are tons of resources online but I always prefer the hands on, community and personal adjustments available with a qualified positive reinforcement instructor at a dog training school. It has, however, been a long time since the dogs and I have gone back to school. When out on a walk earlier this week, we ran into two classmates from several classes and workshops I once attended and I realized that I missed them, their dogs and the dog training class environment. So although I have a long list of behaviors to work on, and I don't currently feel like I need a lot of assistance in training, the dogs and I are missing something. That something is a class. Even though I live in a big city, it isn't easy to find positive reinforcement training classes with instructors I like. Obviously. travel is far from something I am opposed to so I think it is time I work a little harder at finding enrichment classes and workshops for the dogs and I. After all, there are so many awesome reasons to attend positive reinforcement training class with a dog:
Community: As a trainer, it is always very reassuring to know that I am not alone. There is nothing quite as empowering as sitting with a group of other positive reinforcement training enthusiasts, lamenting difficulties and cheering triumphs. Plus, I have never taken a class in which everything I learned was from the teacher. I have always learned from other students as well.
Accountability: Wilhelm, Brychwyn and Huxley work on manners and social cues every day. But we don't do formal training sessions as often as I would like. Attending a class or a workshop means I have to make time to practice. I want to get my time and money's worth out of the class and I want the dogs lives to be enriched as well.
Personalization: A few of the times I have most respected my dogs intelligence and work ethic is when I have seen them work with the teacher of a positive reinforcement training class or workshop. They have often worked better with strangers than with me! The best part of a taking a class or workshop is being able to ask question specific to my training needs. Classes may be more expensive than a book and less convenient than a YouTube video, but personal professional advice is often priceless.
Socialization: Training classes are not the same kind of fun as a trip to the dog park but any and all new experiences are excellent socialization for dogs. Dogs of any age benefit from new smells, new noises, new surfaces, new people, etc. and the added benefit of learning something makes a positive reinforcement training class the perfect socialization opportunity.
Accomplishment: Not all dogs and humans are interested in winning ribbons and earning titles. Completing six weeks of a class or a weekend long workshop is an amazing accomplishment. Best of all, there's the effort made together, human and dog, to learn something new.
Welcome to Positive Reinforcement Pet Training Week hosted by Cascadian Nomads, Rubicon Days & Tenacious Little Terrier. The theme this month is "back to school" but any and all training posts, comments and shares are welcome this and every month. The blog hop is open all week, so if you are a blogger, add a post and if you are a positive pet trainer or training enthusiast, hop around by clicking the thumbnails below, learn and share. Next months Positive Reinforcement Pet Training Week begins October 5th and on the first Monday of every month. Happy training!