Luna's first puppy class

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by NicoleLJ, May 11, 2011.

  1. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    Now that I am feeling much better I can give the post on Luna's puppy class that she went to on Monday. I wasn't able to go. I woke up on Sunday morning with a slightly sore throat. With in a few hours I was having sever chills and heat flashes and so on. It was awful. It lasted till yesterday when I finally forced myself to go to the doctor. Found out a had a serious throat infection. So now I am on some meds that have helped a great deal.

    Anyway with me feeling that awful Doug took Luna to the class. The funny part was he got lost. And ended up coming home to agian look up the direction. He did get there. A 1/2 hour late. He said there is a good group of dogs there. About 8-9. Some small and some large. He is not great at identifying breeds yet but he is pretty sure one is a poodle and is positive one is a husky. Luna did good as far as he is concerned. She sniffed hands of people and also sniffed noses of some of the dogs. She tried to snap at some of the larger dogs so Doug gave a slight correction for that since there was no reason for the snap. He got asked to do no corrections. This trainer does not believe in corrections and is purely positive training. I might try to have a discussion with her on that because we do believe in both corrections and postive reinforcement. But since the class is only one hour a week we might just go with the flow.

    Her nerves did get to her on the way to class and she got sick in the back of the car. But she did not piddle at of during class. So that was great. We had been thinking she might. All in all it wasn't too bad from what Doug said. He is just not comfortable with the purely positive based type training. To him it makes no sense. He does not understand how someone could think ignoring a bad behaviour will make it go away. So I explained to him that many different trainers follow many different ways to train. He is used to me. That will match the training to the personality of the dogs. I am not a fan of food based training. Everyone knows this. BUT Luna is being trained with food rewards because this is her trigger. Figured it out in a month. Toys excite her but not like food does. Unlike Sheena who will ignore all food for a ball, Luna will ignore all toys for a treat. So we go with the flow. I explained to him that some people find something that works for them and sticks with it. She does clicker training and I am interested in seeing how Luna will respond to it. I have done it before but not with Luna. And I think she might respond well to it.

    Anyway that is the update.
     
  2. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

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    Give the trainer a chance and see how she works before trying to go and change up the class. :)
     
  3. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    Oh we are not going to try and change up her class. In no way. It is her class. She is the trainer. What I meant was talking to her privately that we do believe in using both positive reward and corrections. We plan to attend her next set of classes and then move on to her agility classes. So we want to make sure we can train with how we are comforable. Not change up how she would teach others to train their dogs. When we took Sheena to classes for this same reason we talked to the trainers and explained that to them and they made an exception for us. Which worked great for us and them. That is what I am hoping for here too.
     
  4. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

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    It sounds like you chose this specific trainer for a reason. I would challenge you to try things her way, instead of trying to get an exception made, which sort of defeats the purpose of going to that particular trainer.

    I always got really irritated with people who came to my training classes because they needed/wanted help with their dogs and then insisted on doing everything their way. You're paying good money for their expertise for a reason, otherwise, just save the bucks and train at home.
     
  5. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    Be prepared for her to say no. You are right it doesn't hurt to ask, BUT she not only has her own ethics to think about but her other clients.

    I know MANY people who would leave a class if other dogs were getting corrected around their puppies (this is an issue that came up with traditional trainers showing up to positive puppy classes)

    While its your decision how you train your dog, other people might not want your 'correction vibes' near their puppies. I would have take Bounce out of a class when she was a puppy if others were correcting. Its an added stress she doesnt' need. The JRTs wouldn't have cared, even as pups.
     
  6. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    We choose her for one reason. There are not very many classes held in our city and hers was the soonest to start. And we are not going to her for training issues. We told her that when we signed up. We are going to her for purely socialization. She knew that when I talked to her on the phone. And she agreed that the best trainers in the world still need to have other dogs to bring thier puppies around to socialize them properly.

    We are prepared if she says no. We will understand why. And go with the flow while at class. Like I said it is only an hour a week. So no big deal and we can train our way the rest of the time. We also need her class to be able to end up competing with Luna in agility. I know how to train for agility but I want to be with a club to work and compete in. With my last club they had no problem with the exception. And like Dekka said it never hurts to ask. So we will ask and see where it goes.
     
  7. lizzybeth727

    lizzybeth727 New Member

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    ^^^This. As a trainer, I've fired clients who were not willing to listen to me.

    Plus, think of it this way: Say I'm teaching a class with several puppies who absolutely would not do well with punishment, so I'm trying everything I can do to get their owners - who've never done positive reinforcement - to learn alternative methods that don't involve punishment. Then you walk in and use corrections, and those other clients see that it works for you. That pretty much undermines everything I'm trying to teach them.... Which is damaging to me and my reputation, as well as damaging to their puppies who may not be able to handle corrections like yours does.

    I was looking into puppy classes for Keegan, just for socialization. I observed one class from a trainer I was considering, with the intent that I'd just do what she said for that one hour a week and then train my own way at home. But I disagreed so strongly with a lot of the things she was saying, that I knew I wouldn't be able to sit through 6 weeks of classes without at least noticeably rolling my eyes.... Which is not good for the trainer or the other students in the class. So I moved on to a different trainer who was more tolerable.

    So I say this mostly for the lurkers who may stumble upon this thread: Just like you don't "click" with every teacher you have in school, you can't expect to "click" with every dog trainer, either. And no good can come from going to the wrong trainer.
     
  8. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    I agree. And if there were more options for puppy classes in my city then I would find a trainer that clicks. But sadly the options are limited. And like I said I have no problem going with the flow for during the classes. But we will ask first. She can say no. That is her option. That other class I was in with Sheena the trainers there had no issue with it. It depends on the trainers. I won't undermine someones class. But Luna needs the socialization badly. And if we want to do agility with her then we have to work around some things. So for Luna's benifit we will ask. If the answer is no then we will go with the flow and do what we do here at home because we know what works. Luna already knows the commands anyway that were in this weeks homework. Which is a plus for us.
     
  9. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    If you want to do agility you might want to limit corrections. I don't know of any agility trainer that uses corrections, not only are the unnecessary, they slow dogs down. Inhibited dogs and agility don't mix.
     
  10. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    I was told this for Flyball training and found it actually depends on the dog. Sheena learned flyball faster with me using the corrections(for her they are mainly verbal with me saying Naughty in a stern voice) then doing it the way they suggested. The same with agility. She learned more quickly to actually touch the lower areas of the A frame and so on then without corrections. So it really depends on how you use corrections and also on the dog and handler.
     
  11. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    Also as much as you believe you know agility, the trainer will know more. The club you're going to has dogs competing at a national level, not only the trainers' dogs but the students' too. If seriously competing in agility is your goal it's in your best interest to listen to what she has to say and learn from her. Not to mention Luna sounds nervous and shy already from what you've been posting, you need to be boosting her confidence with lots of light, fun, positive and encouraging games and methods if you want to be successful with her. Believe me, i started out like you but when my dog who is naturally shy and cautious shut down with corrections i did my research and read and researched some more and found that methods without physically corrections worked much better (my corrections are removing her reward and ending the game, that's called negative punishment. You're removing something they like when they do something wrong, not adding something they dislike when they do something wrong (positive punishment)). Using corrections (physical and verbal scolding) in agility classes will get you kicked out of most. If you insist on doing it you'll have to get used to being scolded or kicked out because agility is supposed to be fun, light, positive, and happy.

    I suggest you read Susan Garrett's blog that i linked you. She's a no-nonsense trainer who is VERY successful without physical and verbal corrections and has written much on the subject. You make a correction in her class, even saying "No!" or "Nuh Uh" and she'll give you a warning... If you collar pop your dog, i've heard you're kicked right out.
     
  12. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    lol the scientist in me is forced to point this out. I am not talking speed of learning, I am talking speed of dog.

    Corrections shut down dogs (if they work, if the dog ignores the correction then there is no point, though no supression) So it can give the appearance of faster learning as the dog is slower in its movements so it can be 'caught' doing something right. However it makes a dog hesitant to offer things. This is not a detriment in things like obedience where you don't want the dog to think for itself. But in agility you want a thinking dog, a partner.... Corrections slow the dog's performance.

    So you may or may not find your dog learns faster. (though make sure you don't accidentally yell at a dog on course.. you can be kicked of trial grounds for that, at worst or be asked to leave the ring at best)
     
  13. Danefied

    Danefied New Member

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    If you know better than the trainer, why bother giving her your money? There are other ways to socialize your dog that don't involve subjecting yourself to a trainer who's methods you don't agree with. I mean, if you're that good of a trainer, why don't you teach puppy classes yourself?

    And I have to say, the idea that postive training methods involve "ignoring bad behaviors" is so cliche (and so wrong) that its really like fingernails on a chalkboard to me at this point. I didn't get my feral dane's behavior issues fixed by "ignoring" the fact that he tired to kill anyone near his food.

    If you're going to have a discussion with your trainer on how your method of using corrections work better, you might want to educate yourself on positive methods a bit better first.
     
  14. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    Danified, many people think positive = permissive and that you need corrections to have consequences. But there are those that even when they are shown a more effective and less risky way often are hung up on wanting or NEEDING to punish something weaker than themselves.

    I am not saying there is no place for corrections, but agility is NOT one of them. Nor is correcting a dog who snaps at another one EVER a good idea. Its a good way to train them to be reactive. Or at the least distrust other dogs and their handler.
     
  15. Danefied

    Danefied New Member

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    Oh, I know, I'm just sick to death of hearing it, especially with so many dogs and so much evidence to the contrary.

    Agreed 110%, especially about training a dog to be reactive.
     
  16. AgilityPup

    AgilityPup Agility freak!

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    I was just sitting here wondering to myself how you can even really correct a dog while doing agility? I mean, the way I look at it is, sure, a dog would jump over something in everyday life. Maybe even walk across a 12 inch wide, 4 foot high board. Heck, even tip a teeter like object. (But hey, when will you see them weave 6-12 24 inch spaced weave poles by their own choice!?) However, they're not likely to do a whole course worth on those things on their own. We're asking them for it, and if they even attempt it, that's good enough for me. I may not throw a party for their attempt, but they are assured that trying is better than not doing at all.

    Heck, I don't even use "no" in my agility training. If they do something "wrong" they get a "Whoopsie!" and I goof around with them while taking them back so they can try again. They try again, do it right, and they get a big celebration.

    I hope you'll give the puppy classes a chance. Like you've said, it all depends on the dog, and honestly, from what I've read of Luna, I think she'll do well with a positive only program.
     
  17. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    This. Like you said, it is her class so why not try her methods?
    Even if you trained sheena well using your way, there might be another great way that works and would work well for Luna.
    I was also kind of disbeliving of ONLY positive based training at first, but I figured, Why not? I don't LIKE correcting my dog or being mean and there are so many well trained dogs trained this way. So I gave it a try and I am so happy with the results and I'm glad that I did :) Im happy that training and working with me is such a happy experience for me and my dog

    I'm glad to hear Luna had a good puppy class. Those classes are a lot of fun, I've never had a puppy so I've never been to one lol but I've seen them and it looks really fun and great to see all those puppies together :)

    Also, you might wanna try making one big LUNA thread you can just continue to update, it will make the timeline and everything of it all quite a bit easier to read
     
  18. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    I hear the 'but my dog is so special and not like any other dog you have ever trained and NEEDs corrections'. I always wonder why they think its the dog that is too stupid. :D Why is it always the dog's fault if someone not understanding the basics of the training method fails?
     
  19. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    Oh and for the record, I do kind of do corrections sorta..
    Like if Romeo is halfway through eating a chocolate easter bunny, I'm probably going to scream lol

    not sure if that counts though.. because its more of an "OMG STOP!" because its bad for him, and not an "WRONG! NO! BAD DOG!"
     
  20. NicoleLJ

    NicoleLJ PSD Partner

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    I already stated why we are going to the classes. look I didn't post this to turn into another debate. It seems every time I post something with Luna and training it turns into a debate. Yes I am a trainer. No I do not teach classes. Why? Because I have no desire to teach the people. I have seen too many who you give advice to, they ignore it and don't work with their dogs and then blame the trainer and not themselves.

    Yes Luna is a nervous dog. I have pointed that out from the very first day I had her. And it was because of how she was raised and not socialized at all. She has progressed in leaps and bounds with my training methods. So I have no desire to change that now with her. I have no desire to confuse her by changing how she is being trained when she is have such positive results with it. We don't want to compete in agility at a serious level. It is something we want to do for fun. And if DOug likes it then he will consider it at a more serious level for later.

    Do I know all there is about agility? No. I have never competed in it. But I do know how to train dogs with issues. That is all I did for years. And I am confident in how I do it. We go to the class for socialiaztion. I have not once put down the trainer or her methods. Not once. I have said that it does not work for me and what I prefer. I have said I like her as a person as well and that we want to be a part of her club so we can compete. Just because people believe in different styles of training does not mean they are putting the other person down. I know what works for me and my dogs.

    All I wanted to do was post about her class and how she did and her progression. If all my posts about Luna and her training are all going to turn into debates then I just won't post about it any more because I have no interest in debating my style of training or how I choose to train my dogs.
     

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