What Training Class is Best for Your Dog?

What Dog Training Class Is Best for Your Dog?

Whether you have a high-energy German shepherd or a cheeky Yorkshire terrier, dog training can give them the socialization and mental stimulation they need. However, with so many dog training courses to choose from, it can be challenging to find the best fit for your pet.

From puppy training to obedience classes, this guide gives you a helpful breakdown of the best dog training programs. You can then sign up with confidence and look forward to strengthening your bond with your pup or older dog.

Puppy Training Programs

While it’s certainly possible to teach an older dog some new tricks, it’s much easier to train puppies. Puppy training sessions help your new pet acquire skills such as basic obedience, confidence and socialization. If this is the first time you’re welcoming a dog into your household, puppy training programs will also help you learn what to expect from your pet. Learn more about the different puppy training courses we have on offer.

1. Puppy Play and Train Program

Puppies aged 10 to 20 weeks are welcome to join our Puppy Play and Train Program. By signing up, you and your puppy will benefit from two 60-minute intro and exit sessions as well as 12 full days of socializing and training. At the end of the course, your puppy will have mastered skills in the following areas:

  • Basic manners
  • Body awareness
  • Confidence building
  • Foundation commands, such as “come,” “sit,” “place,” “heel” and “down”

Our Trainers will also introduce you and your puppy to leash walking, crate training and agility work

In addition, our trainers will introduce you and your puppy to leash walking, crate training and agility work. This course offers a great foundation for further training and encourages healthy interactions with other dogs from the start.

2. Group Puppy Obedience Training

It’s one thing for a puppy to obey a command in the comfort of your home — but the outside world is full of distractions. Our Group Puppy Obedience Training exposes your pup to different noises and smells, as well as people and dogs, helping them learn to follow commands in high-stimulation environments.

This program is suited to puppies between 12 weeks and 6 months and is held on Sunday mornings. Once your pup has completed six 60-minute training sessions, they should demonstrate basic obedience in public places.

3. Private Puppy Lessons

If work commitments prevent you from attending training classes during the week, you may want to consider Private Training Lessons. The package includes five 60-minute training sessions. You can schedule them on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Aside from working through the puppy obedience and socialization basics, you’ll also benefit from personalized training tips from your experienced trainer.

4. Puppy Consult Package

If you’ve experienced the joy of raising a furry ball of boundless energy before, you may not want to sign up for an extended puppy training program. Our Puppy Consult Package is an excellent option for puppy owners who simply want to refresh their knowledge of obedience training.

During your once-off private training session, you and your new pup will learn the basics of obedience, manners and socialization. Working exclusively with our trainers also offers specific training advice for your pup’s breed and temperament.

Dog Obedience Training Programs

Border collies, poodles and golden retrievers are some of the smartest dog breeds around — they require higher levels of mental stimulation to keep them out of mischief. Obedience training is an excellent way to keep your dog engaged while also ensuring their safety in public spaces. For example, instructing your dog to sit on the sidewalk while you wait to cross the road helps to keep them safe from oncoming traffic. If you’re interested in attending dog obedience training sessions with your pup or older dog, consider one of these options:

  • Marker Obedience: Marker training relies on using your voice, treats or a clicker to encourage your dog to follow commands. By pairing your Marker Obedience sessions with daily at-home reinforcement, your dog will learn commands such as “heel,” “place” and “down.” This package includes five 60-minute private training sessions.
  • Basic Obedience Package: From basic commands to loose leash walking, we’ll cover all the essentials over four 60-minute sessions. You’ll also receive an E-collar and a 15-foot leash to use during training.
  • Basic and Advanced Obedience Package: Reinforcement is key to developing your dog’s obedience skills, and this package allows for maximum practice. Over eight 60-minute training sessions, your dog will master various commands, including how to walk on a leash without tugging. This package also includes an E-collar and a 15-foot leash.
  • Basic Obedience Starter Package: Three of the most important commands are “come,” “sit” and “stay.” Our expert trainers will help you teach your dog these vital commands in one 60-minute private lesson. You’ll also receive a leash and an E-collar.

All our obedience training programs rely on positive reinforcement methods. By rewarding your dog for desired behaviors, you encourage them to repeat the behavior in the future. As you’ll need to practice the commands you learn at home, exploring different reward options for your dog is a good idea. Some common examples include treats, toys and even a game of tug. Many dogs have a high food drive, so high-value treats are often the most effective. Here are some ideas to try:

  • Dried liver pieces
  • Small pieces of cheese
  • Pea-sized pieces of boiled chicken
  • Hard-boiled eggs, cut into small pieces

Behavioral Training Programs

Obedience and behavioral training are distinctly different. Obedience training focuses on reinforcing certain behaviors, whereas behavioral training corrects bad habits. Behavioral training is a particularly helpful method for older dogs with established behavior patterns. However, some puppies may start to exhibit bad habits early on, and this training approach will help nip them in the bud. Dog behaviors that constitute problematic include:

  • Digging
  • Aggression
  • Food guarding
  • Separation anxiety
  • Destructive chewing
  • Constant howling or barking

Our Dog Aggression Training Package helps address these reactive behaviors and more. Over the course of six private lessons and three group sessions, you’ll work with our trainers to reinforce core commands such as “place,” “heel” and “off.” Once you’ve introduced these commands, you’ll use them to condition alternative responses. For example, if your dog tends to jump on you or your guests, reinforcing the command “place” will help them know where to go when someone enters your home.

At the end of the program, your dog will respond appropriately to triggers and threats. Knowing that your dog will react in a positive and consistent way helps pet owners feel at ease in public spaces.

It is much easier to train puppies

Board and Train Programs

Dog owners who choose one of our Board and Train Programs will book their dogs into our facilities for one or two weeks, depending on the course. During the specified period, your dog will undergo daily training to ensure reliable behavior in all environments. Some of the reasons why dog parents choose our Board and Train packages include:

  • Convenience: The world doesn’t stop turning when you add a furry addition to your household. If you’re struggling to balance work commitments and family responsibilities with training your dog, Board and Train Programs offer a convenient solution.
  • Accelerated learning: The more you reinforce a command, the more likely it is that your dog will follow it. By signing your dog up for an immersive and extended training experience, you help them to learn the obedience basics more quickly.
  • Professional training: You don’t need expert skills to train your dog, but it sure does help. Some breeds may also be more challenging to train than others. Board and Train Programs mean a professional and experienced team trains your dog.
  • Improved socialization: Socializing your dog from an early age helps them feel more confident in public spaces. In addition, exposure to new environments, people and other dogs helps reduce the likelihood of problem behavior. Our facilities allow your dog to experience the many benefits of socialization.

1. One-Week Freedom Program

If your dream is to have your dog accompany you on adventures to the park or beach, they will need to master recall. Our one-week Freedom Board and Train Program will achieve this essential learning outcome, allowing you to confidently let your dog off-leash in specified public spaces. In addition, our team will teach greeting manners and basic commands. We’ll also introduce the concept of “heel,” so you have the foundation to build good walking habits.

When you collect your dog at the end of the program, you’ll receive an E-collar and meet the trainer for a 90-minute session on how to reinforce the training techniques at home.

2. Two-Week Community K-9 Program

Two weeks may seem like a long time to be without your furry friend, but the results are worth it. Enrolling your dog in our Community K-9 Two-Week Board and Train Program will teach them appropriate responses to common mid-level distractions. For example, they’ll learn how to respond when someone knocks at the door or how to interact with other dogs at the park.

With this program, you’ll also receive an E-collar and a 90-minute training session at the end of the two weeks.

3. Two-Week Urban K-9 Program

If you live in a busy metropolitan area, your dog will face a multitude of high-level distractions. These environments make it more challenging for dogs to obey commands, and there’s often a greater risk to their safety.

Our Urban Program will present your dog with various high-stimulation environments, such as busy airports, noisy train stations and crowded shopping centers. Extensive training in these environments will help your dog learn how to react in similar situations. In addition, they’ll learn how to hold an extended “sit” or “place,” so they don’t venture off into a busy road or onto the train tracks.

This program also includes an E-collar and a 90-minute private training session.

All our obedience training programs rely on positive reinforcement methods

4. Two-Week Aggressive/Reactive Program

Aggressive or reactive dogs can unintentionally harm your home, other animals and even people. For this reason, you must correct this behavior as soon as possible. Our Aggressive/Reactive Program presents the most effective way to address problematic habits and condition alternative behaviors. By signing up for this board and train package, your dog will benefit from:

  • Two weeks of immersive training
  • Boarding with a professional trainer
  • Two private sessions with their dedicated trainer
  • Three group training sessions for additional reinforcement

As with all our Train and Board packages, we’ll schedule a comprehensive 90-minute debrief session with you upon program completion. However, if you require a refresher course, we’re always happy to assist — free of charge.

Therapy Dog Training

According to the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), a therapy dog supports someone’s physical, social, emotional or cognitive needs. Therapy dogs frequently visit places like frail care centers, hospitals and hospices to bring comfort to adults and children. Unlike service dogs that are allowed to enter public buildings, therapy dogs have limited access. It’s best to research therapy dog regulations for your specific state so you know where they can and can’t go.

While you might argue that all dogs offer therapeutic benefits, they must first undergo training and assessments to qualify as a “therapy dog.” Off Leash K9 Training Maryland offers two courses for you to consider if you’d like to train your dog for clinical settings. Both courses are run by our dog trainers in Maryland who are certified canine behaviorists and AKC-certified evaluators.

Therapy Dog Development Program

If your dog has a calm demeanor and is affectionate with strangers, they’re probably a good fit for a therapy dog. By signing up for our Therapy Dog Development Program, your dog will participate in eight private lessons — four of which will focus on obedience, while the remainder will center on your dog passing the therapy dog certification.

In your sessions, you’ll work with experienced dog trainers in Maryland to gain a concrete grasp of five commands. You and your dog will also do extensive groundwork to ensure you’re ready to pass the therapy dog evaluation. At the end of training, your dog would have the standard obedience to be able to pass any certification.

Canine Good Citizen Prep Course

The American Kennel Club (AKC) developed the Canine Good Citizen (CGC) program to help all dogs be good dogs. Our Canine Good Citizen Prep course will help you and your dog prepare to pass the AKC CGC test. By signing up for this program, owners can enhance their dog’s obedience and establish a strong bond. The course assesses 10 skills along the following criteria:

  • Recall abilities
  • Walking etiquette
  • Supervised separation
  • Sitting politely for petting
  • Appearance and grooming
  • Accepting friendly strangers
  • Reactive behaviors to other dogs
  • Walking calmly in crowded places
  • Following an extended “stay” or “place” command
  • Following commands such as “sit” and “down” on cue
  • Owner responses common to problems linked to the AKC test

Our Trainers Can Help You Choose the Perfect Training Program for Your Dog

If you’ve reviewed our puppy training, obedience and behavioral courses and are still coming up short, we’re here to help! Our expert team makes it their mission to recommend the best training program based on your dog’s nature and behavior. By signing up for the right course, you and your dog can enjoy many fun adventures together.

The Off Leash K9 Training Maryland team believes every dog is trainable. Whether they’re exhibiting problem behavior or you want to encourage better obedience, we’ll help you work through the relevant course. For more information about our programs, contact our experienced team of trainers for personalized advice on dog training in Maryland.

Contact Us To Enroll Your Dog

Posted in Blog, Dog Training, Puppy Training, Therapy Dogs.