If you're nervous about your dog's first puppy training class, you're not alone. Read this guide to learn what to expect and how to best support your pup here!
If you've just adopted a new puppy, you're probably enjoying all the nose boops and puppy cuddles possible. You're probably also dealing with accidents around the house, chewed-up documents being scattered here and there, and fishing trash out of your dog's mouth.
While dogs will eventually grow out of some of their rambunctious puppy behavior, enrolling your new fur-baby in a dog training class can help speed up the process. And, it can make sure that your dog gets properly socialized and grows up to be a happy, obedient pooch.
Before you send your dog off to puppy classes, knowing what to expect can make things easier. Let's take a look at this guide to what to expect in your first puppy training class!
Let Go of the Nerves
When getting ready to go to your first puppy obedience training session, it's not uncommon to feel a bit nervous. However, the first thing to know about puppy training is that these spaces are designed to be comfortable and encouraging.
Puppy school is a learning experience both for the dog and for the owners. The dogs will all have different abilities, and every dog will learn at different rates.
On top of that, your dog trainer knows how to help you achieve success. He or she will provide a supportive and open atmosphere where you and your pooch can really explore and learn together.
Get Ready to Learn a Lot
One thing most people don't realize about puppy obedience training is that you cover a lot of material. When you're in a puppy training class, you can expect to learn several commands, such as:
Come when called by name
How to walk on a leash
How to greet people
How to visit the vet
How to play and how to socialize with other people and pets
How to share food, bones, and chews
Each class will allow you the chance to practice these exercises with your dog. However, since there's limited time, you'll still need to put in some work at home with your dog. That way you can both get the most out of your classes!
Get Your Dog Used to Travel
If you're going to be traveling to puppy classes in a car, you'll want to make sure your dog is used to traveling in a vehicle first. This can help make the experience smoother and can make it easier for you to make it to class on time for each session.
On top of training your pooch to behave in the car, you'll want to try to arrive at least 15 minutes before your class starts. Doing so gives your dog time to relax and recover and to use the bathroom before going to class.
Plus, it's an opportunity for your pooch to get the wiggles out before the hard work starts. It's a great way to make sure you're dog is ready to get down to business once the session begins.
Have the Right Paperwork
When you go to a puppy class, it's very important to make sure that your dog has been checked out by a vet and has all the right vaccines first. Why? Because with the right vaccinations you can keep your dog and his classmates safe from diseases.
On top of routine vaccines, you'll want to make sure that you get your dog dewormed. Most dogs are born with intestinal worms, which they receive from their mom.
It's important to get your dog dewormed so that he doesn't spread these worms to other pets or people in the class. A prescription dewormer can usually help clear up any worms and make sure your dog is ready for class.
Bring the Right Gear
To make sure you're ready for class, you'll want to ensure you have the right gear. For class, you'll need several pieces of equipment to make sure your class is a success.
A Collar or Harness
Each week, make sure that you bring a plain buckle collar or a well-fitting harness. This will be important for helping your dog learn some of the commands in class.
The Whole Family
To make your puppy training a success, make sure you bring the whole family to training. This way all family members will learn the commands and will bond with your puppy.
You'll want to make sure you pack some small yet tasty treats for your dog. Smaller treats are recommended so that your dog doesn't get too full during training but can still be rewarded for good behavior.
Not all dogs are motivated by food! Some puppies will work harder for playtime, meaning bringing your dog's favorite toy can be a great way to reward your puppy and keep him motivated during class.
Training is hard work and can easily cause your dog to get thirsty. Make sure you bring a bowl and some water for your dog so that he doesn't get dehydrated.
It's normal for puppies to have accidents, and those accidents might happen during class. Bring some poop bags with you to puppy training so that you can clean up after your pooch if he has an accident.
Use Your Words
Before joining a puppy training class, you'll want to know what words and signals you'll use with your dog. This will help you train your puppy to associate certain cues with an action.
Make sure to discuss these cues with your family members before attending class. If everyone at home is using different signals, it could confuse your dog and make learning a tough process for your puppy.
Sign Up for a Puppy Training Class
Going to a puppy training class isn't so scary after all. And, with all these tips on how to prepare, you'll be ready to leave your class as an A student!
Are you ready to sign up for a puppy training class and start learning new skills? Get in touch with K-9 Culture and we'll help you train your new puppy!
Have FUN with your Dog!