Jump to content

Training Classes


Recommended Posts

I'm thinking of taking Marlow to a basic training class. I think it would be fun and would get us both out of the house (recently moved to Texas and we're both bored).. Anything I should look for in a class? Questions I should ask? I found a place that has a basic class as well as other, more advanced classes (canine good citizen, agility for fun not competition,etc.), which could be fun down the road.

 

TIA!

<p>Kim and the hound - Rumor
Missing my angels Marlow, Silver, Holly and Lucky

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Number 1 requirement on my list would be that the class use only positive reinforcement methods and no punishment based ones. I personally really like classes that use clicker training. I am sure others will have some helpful suggestions for you!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Number 1 requirement on my list would be that the class use only positive reinforcement methods and no punishment based ones. I personally really like classes that use clicker training. I am sure others will have some helpful suggestions for you!

 

x a million.

 

If there are any punishment or "corrections" used I am out of there with my dogs faster than you can bat an eye. I would never let someone use those techniques on MY dog, but I have learned that even if the trainer only uses positive methods with my dog but raises their voice or heavily corrects other dogs in the class that my dogs are affected by it. Kili is afraid of the building where we used to go for show handling. The trainer there does use corrections. She never did on my dog and was only positive reinforcement with Kili, but I don't go there anymore because I noticed that it was one place where Kili always seemed on edge. She would get visibly upset/nervous when other dogs would get yelled at or corrected. I don't need to expose my dog to that kind of environment, even if indirectly. So I would strongly recommend only using a trainer that is fully on board with positive reinforcement only!

Kristie and the Apex Agility Greyhounds: Kili (ATChC AgMCh Lakilanni Where Eagles Fly RN IP MSCDC MTRDC ExS Bronze ExJ Bronze ) and Kenna (Lakilanni Kiss The Sky RN MADC MJDC AGDC AGEx AGExJ). Waiting at the Bridge: Retired racer Summit (Bbf Dropout) May 5, 2005-Jan 30, 2019

Like us on Facebook!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest morgannicole

We have been doing the clicker training at Petsmart with Riot and Spitfire. Both of them seem to be doing really well after two classes. They love the clicker and being rewarded with treats.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Be very wary of any instructor that insists that your dog can go off-lead. When you do the off-lead in class, make sure that no other dogs can get to your dog and that all the doors are closed so that your grey can not get loose - in other words, it MUST be an enclosed area and away from other dogs on class.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have been doing the clicker training at Petsmart with Riot and Spitfire. Both of them seem to be doing really well after two classes. They love the clicker and being rewarded with treats.

Is clicker training standard at Petsmart or is that a special class?

<p>Kim and the hound - Rumor
Missing my angels Marlow, Silver, Holly and Lucky

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another question - what is the difference between "wait" and "leave it"? I've taught Marlow to "speak" (that was easy!) and thought waiting for a treat or to go outside would be easy but unsure of correct command.

<p>Kim and the hound - Rumor
Missing my angels Marlow, Silver, Holly and Lucky

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest morgannicole

Is clicker training standard at Petsmart or is that a special class?

 

I think it is standard. We signed up for the beginner class and that is what we are currently enrolled in. On the first day they supplied us with a clicker.

There is also intermediate and advanced classes that you can continue with afterwards.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another question - what is the difference between "wait" and "leave it"? I've taught Marlow to "speak" (that was easy!) and thought waiting for a treat or to go outside would be easy but unsure of correct command.

 

The difference is whatever you make it. It's just a word you choose. In this house "wait" means "do not move until I tell you otherwise" (traditionally what most people think of as a "stay"... I don't differentiate between stay and wait) and "leave it" means "don't pick that object up/don't sniff that object/don't pay attention to that object" (I use this for stuff on the ground the dogs might want to sniff or eat, when I don't want Summit smelling/peeing on something on a walk, etc.).

Kristie and the Apex Agility Greyhounds: Kili (ATChC AgMCh Lakilanni Where Eagles Fly RN IP MSCDC MTRDC ExS Bronze ExJ Bronze ) and Kenna (Lakilanni Kiss The Sky RN MADC MJDC AGDC AGEx AGExJ). Waiting at the Bridge: Retired racer Summit (Bbf Dropout) May 5, 2005-Jan 30, 2019

Like us on Facebook!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah "leave it" usually is used for things you don't want your dog to try to pick up, eat, bother etc. unless you say okay.

 

I use both "stay" and "wait" but for different situations. For example if I'm opening the door to go out, I use "stay" if I'm leaving and my dogs aren't coming with me, but "wait" if they are coming with me and I want them to not bolt out the door until I say "ok." Same if I am getting out of the car, if they will be waiting in the car while I run in somewhere quick versus getting out with me. It's just kind of so they know what to expect.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another question - what is the difference between "wait" and "leave it"? I've taught Marlow to "speak" (that was easy!) and thought waiting for a treat or to go outside would be easy but unsure of correct command.

Like others have said, the cues can be anything you'd like. You could have the cue for leaving something alone be "mushroom" if you wanted it to be. :P But we do tend to use words that have meaning to us. For us, "leave it" means leave that thing alone. Some trainers teach that the dog never gets the thing they are told to leave when training while others say you can use a release cue like "okay" to indicate the dog can then have it. It's your choice, but I think it's valid point that I'm probably never going to need the leave it cue for something I want the dog to have eventually.

 

Wait and stay are definitely different here. I changed my release for stay somewhat recently. It used to just be the verbal "okay", but now the release is the verbal okay and me patting the dog on their front left leg at the same time. Wait, which can be applied in numerous ways (and we practice all of these applications) - waiting at the door, to get out of the car, until I put the food bowl down and tell you you can eat, etc. - only requires the verbal "okay". The reason for this - safety. The physical release just ensures that when I tell my dog to stay, he is going to stay until I can get to him and is less likely to just pop up. Could be useful if for instance he accidentally got loose near a busy road. Presumably if I have a sit or down stay trained reliably enough, I could put the dog into a stay until I could get to him and put a leash on.

gallery_12662_3351_862.jpg

Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Payton and I go for training at Petsmart. The training itself is not useful to me, keeping in mind that I have been training on own dogs for years. They do teach clicker training at Petsmart, which I have never done. So I got a clicker and greyhound for dummies and starting clicker training.

 

So obedience training is not why we go to training at Petsmart. Payton really needs socialization and that is why we go.

 

Our class is very small and the dogs are pretty young. I kept Payton muzzled but he did nothing to give the impression that he would be aggressive towards any of the dogs. As a matter of fact, he noticed a green stuffy on a table when we walked in and that is all he could concentrate on. Anytime he had a opportunity, he was going for the stuffy.

 

I also think the trainers you get make a big different. Some of the trainers are great. Some not so much.

 

All of that to say-- take the class at Petsmart but be the most informed person in the class. Have realistic expectations and be your dog's biggest support and defendant.

 

And of course, have fun!

 

Edited to say: I taught Payton the same commands that everyone else did and I use them in essentially the same way

Edited by Acadianarose

61bd4941-fc71-4135-88ca-2d22dbd4b59a_zps

Payton, The Greyhound (Palm City Pelton) and Toby, The Lab
Annabella and Julietta, The Cats
At the Bridge - Abby, The GSD

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here's my tips for finding a good trainer: Ask people you know with well-behaved dogs who they use, and what kinds of methods the trainer uses. Ask if you can go watch a class (without your dog) once you have narrowed the list down. If they say no, I'd scratch them off the list. I want a trainer who is open and doesn't mind people watching what's going on. Is there a limit on the class size (mine limits it to 10 dogs)? What's the ratio of dogs/trainer and assistants? If your dog has any particular issues, have they dealt with that before and how? One reason I went with the trainer I did is because she managed to get agility titles on a shy Irish wolfhound, so I figured she would be able to give good advice on a spook greyhound. How do they deal with "problem" dogs, the reactive and aggressive ones, or the timid and fearful? Mine uses a system of visual barriers (and assistants) to allow them to participate in class while still remaining below threshold. Do the people and dogs in class seem to be enjoying themselves? You may want to ask about their requirements on vaccinations, if you titer your dogs instead of following the vaccine protocols. What kind of follow-up do they provide?

 

Here is a good article as well:

http://www.whole-dog-journal.com/issues/13_9/features/Dog-Training-Professionals_20063-1.html

77f6598d-2.jpg

My blog about helping Katie learn to be a more normal dog: http://katies-journey-philospher77.blogspot.com/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info everyone! It's been helpful.

 

Another question - is it okay to muzzle Marlow at first when we go to training? I have avoided Pet Smart because I don't really know this dog. I have no idea how he will be with other dogs. He is the first greyhound I've had that reacts to other dogs on walks (my other greyhounds would just look at crazy barking dogs like they were crazy but Marlow is one of those crazy barking dogs. We're working on that and it is getting better but have a long way to go as far as I'm concerned). I also don't know if he is small dog safe or cat safe. He likes to "hunt" in the backyard and last night on our walk we saw our first rabbit and he went NUTS! My other greys never acted that way, even the non cat safe ones. I really want to get him out more around people and dogs but don't know how to safely do that. As I said before, we moved here this summer and I don't know anyone, not even neighbors, I realized last night that Marlow hasn't had contact with anyone but our family since we got him (other than a vet trip, and some repair people coming into the house). Ugh, I feel so discouraged.

<p>Kim and the hound - Rumor
Missing my angels Marlow, Silver, Holly and Lucky

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is my two cents, but since you don't know your hound that well yet, I would wait on the training class. He needs more time to get to know you and feel secure with you, and you need time to evaluate how he is with other dogs. Even if you do start training class now, I would not muzzle him. It just sends a poor message, either that he's a biter or that you can't trust him, and if that's the case why did you bring him there? We greyhound people are used to seeing basket muzzles and knowing they don't mean those things, but other people often don't.

 

An alternative is private in-home training. It doesn't necessarily cost more than a group class. We did that for Capri for her first obedience class, more because we didn't trust other dogs than her, but it turned out very well. She didn't have to wait her turn for things and it was all centered around her. (Which as she will tell you is the correct and proper way of things. LOL )

Sharon, Loki, Freyja, Capri (bridge angel and most beloved heart dog), Ajax (bridge angel) and Sweetie Pie (cat)

Visit Hound-Safe.com by Something Special Pet Supplies for muzzles and other dog safety products

:gh_bow

Link to comment
Share on other sites

just remember that greyhounds have a short attention span. they can not and will not repeat exercises over and over and over again like a lab or golden will. be prepared and mention this to the teacher. i always brought a thick non-skid bathmat for my dogs. when they were bored they had a comfortable place to crash. also when you start doing downs and sits they need a magic carpet! some greys will respond to toys, most won't. i found they all respond to high quality treats-have raw meat or cooked chicken in your bait pouch. also remember NOT to feed him before. it seems as if greys can manage one task as a time- digesting food is a task! a hungry dog works much better. be patient, praise and keep it fun!

 

i would not muzzle marlow, a good trainer will be able the team into positive behavior.but it really is your responsibility to have communicated w/ the trainer and give her/him a full picture of all the problems that you have been encountering. have some basic goals set for the classes, don't worry about the curriculum, target specific behaviors. training will not be a one shot deal. i have been in classes w/ some crazy dogs, the trainer and her assistant was well aware of the problems and handled it professionally. we all survived w/o incident.

Edited by cleptogrey
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't see any reason to wait on training classes.

 

If you're concerned about his reaction to other dogs (some or all), there's nothing wrong with starting out with his muzzle on and taking it off when you get there. Regarding muzzles, I personally don't care what message I send or impression I give to others -- that is absolutely irrelevant unless you're doing a TV commercial. I care about my dog and keeping other animals/people and my dog and myself safe. That is all that matters.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info everyone! It's been helpful.

 

Another question - is it okay to muzzle Marlow at first when we go to training? I have avoided Pet Smart because I don't really know this dog. I have no idea how he will be with other dogs. He is the first greyhound I've had that reacts to other dogs on walks (my other greyhounds would just look at crazy barking dogs like they were crazy but Marlow is one of those crazy barking dogs. We're working on that and it is getting better but have a long way to go as far as I'm concerned). I also don't know if he is small dog safe or cat safe. He likes to "hunt" in the backyard and last night on our walk we saw our first rabbit and he went NUTS! My other greys never acted that way, even the non cat safe ones. I really want to get him out more around people and dogs but don't know how to safely do that. As I said before, we moved here this summer and I don't know anyone, not even neighbors, I realized last night that Marlow hasn't had contact with anyone but our family since we got him (other than a vet trip, and some repair people coming into the house). Ugh, I feel so discouraged.

 

 

 

I muzzle Payton when we go to Petsmart. He seems fine, but I do not know that for sure. I do not want anyone hurt. More people than you can imagine have asked him if he is mean or a biter and that is why we have him muzzled. If someone asks, I will take the time to explain, but otherwise, I don’t care what they think.

61bd4941-fc71-4135-88ca-2d22dbd4b59a_zps

Payton, The Greyhound (Palm City Pelton) and Toby, The Lab
Annabella and Julietta, The Cats
At the Bridge - Abby, The GSD

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...