Training classes.. what are yours like?

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Fran101, Aug 8, 2012.

  1. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    I realized A LOT of us do training classes with our dogs yet I realized there really aren't too many threads about them. I am looking at different puppy classes now and would love to know what to look for

    What's your instructor like? If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like? What kinds of classes are you taking? What kind of classes does the school offer? Do you like the classes? What would you change? What classes do you hope to take?
    What do you like about taking group classes?

    Anything you'd like to share really lol oh and of course pictures if you've got them

    GO.
     
  2. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    What's your instructor like?
    Hilarious and freaking knowledgeable as hell. They're also my friends :)

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    I paid $175 for 6 weeks.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    My Dog is an Asshole class :D (aka: growl class)

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    All kinds of stuff. Behavior stuff like different levels of growl class. Manners classes, obedience classes, rally classes, REACTIVE AGILITY CLASS! etc.

    Do you like the classes?
    Love them. Wish they went for longer!
    The barrier setup I LOVE and the way that they bring dogs in and out of the class is spectacular (one instructor stays in the building with the group and the other walks with one person at a time to their car, helping them to make it as stress free and as much of a learning experience as possible for the dog)


    What would you change?
    The other people in class don't put as much effort in as I am, or at least that's what I feel like. There are lots of excuses for why they couldn't do XYZ. I ended up being the only person to acclimate my dog to a Gentle Leader between the first and second class. Fortunately it doesn't hold me back, but it just irks me to listen to them come up with 8,000 excuses when they probably just didn't want to do it.

    Also there is a person who is only in the class so that she can get back to competing in competitive obedience with her reactive lab. Which, is fine. BUT the whole class ALL she wants to talk about is her stupid OTHER lab who has 8 gazillion titles. Nobody else cares! lol And then half of the last class she sat there saying "It's such a shame to not be able to show a dog that's so handsome" ugh, barf.

    What classes do you hope to take?
    I would like to eventually get back into Nosework (at a different location) and maybe agility (at the location SaraB trains/teaches at, a 3rd location lol).
    I would love to take more classes with the current instructors that I am using, but their business is actually set up 2 hours away, one instructor just drives up to the cities every other week to teach this particular class. I would like to move on to Growl Class level 2 if I can afford it when the time comes.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    They're cheaper than privates, lol. And with Frodo, asking him to work for an hour or even half an hour straight in sports like agility or nosework is just not gonna happen. When we were taking SaraB's weavers class (which we loved!) it was just us and another dog. It was a lot for poor slow Frodo, and he got tired and demotivated easily.
     
  3. Red.Apricot

    Red.Apricot Active Member

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    Right now I'm taking a rally class. It's $120/8 (2 hour) lessons the first time you sign up, $60/8 lessons after that. It's not through a school, it's through an obedience club.

    I like my instructor; he knows the rules of the game, and he's very capable of communicating to me what it is I'm doing with my body that's making my dog mess up; leaning to get a crooked sit, waving my hand around like an idiot, whatever. He also doesn't pull punches or give false praise, which for me is important, because that way I to know that the praise he does give is genuine.

    I like the class quite a bit; pretty much everyone is friendly, and many of the dogs are absolutely lovely. The main thing I'd change is the method taught; I was looking for a clicker class, and this one isn't. The trainer doesn't give me a hard time about training on a flat collar and using a clicker, but I'm really the only one who does, which means I'm not getting solutions that are tailored to my chosen style of training. Since the trainer is familiar with clicker training and does understand timing and stuff, he's still a huge help, and, as I said, I do like him quite a bit, so it's not the end of the world, especially since the classes are a great deal and are quite close to my house.

    I like the amount of distraction in the class, both because of the other dogs, and because of the instructor. This week, Elsie was running the course really well, so he started walking through it snapping a garbage bag, and throwing balls at us, lol. At first she was like OMG LET'S DO THAT INSTEAD, but then was all, 'okay fine this works too.'

    Anyway; in my area, there are surprisingly few clicker for competitive obedience classes, which is originally what I was looking for. The closest one is 45 minutes away if there's no traffic, and costs tons, so it wasn't super do-able for me right now, unfortunately. I'll sign up for that one as soon as I can, but rally (since the judge isn't in the ring with us and strangers don't touch the dog) is something we're able to muddle through without having a clicker class.
     
  4. BlackPuppy

    BlackPuppy Owned by Belgians

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    What are your instructors like?
    Extremely knowledgeable

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    $25 for 7 weeks. One hour per week. (I'm a club member.) For the public $90

    What kinds of classes have I taken?
    Obedience, rally, agility, tracking, conformation, puppy Kindergarten

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    The above, plus an occassional specialized class, like trieball.

    Do you like the classes?
    Yes.

    What would you change?

    What classes do you hope to take?

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    Being in a group.

    http://qcdtc.org/location.html
     
  5. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    What's your instructor like?
    Awesome! :D

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    I paid $105 for 5 weeks.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    Right now, we're taking a Basic Obedience class, mainly to work on Jack focusing on me, and to help work on his reactivity.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Obedience and agility -

    Do you like the classes?
    Yes! I love the setup and the large amounts of space - you really have room to work! The last class (at a different facility) I took with Jack was overcrowded and in a very small space - it made both of us uncomfortable.

    What would you change?
    There are a few people in the class that definitely don't put in a lot of effort, and it shows. It doesn't affect us and what we're doing, but it irritates me on a large scale. I'm like that with anything though, not just training classes - I dislike people that I work with that don't put in any effort, and I dislike people that I go to school with that don't put in any effort. If you don't want to be here, then don't show up.

    What classes do you hope to take?
    The training facility offers a Mind Your Manners class that I'm seriously thinking about taking.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    Jack has reactivity issues, and in order to work on them, I need to be around things that he reacts to - hence the reason for working around other people. I also like seeing other people work their dogs, and what their style is - learning from observation and all that.
     
  6. Jenne

    Jenne Ball Thrower

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    What's your instructor like?
    She's an older retired lady. She's very nice and knowledgeable.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    6 classes for $125

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    This will be our last puppy class then we'll move onto obedience.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Puppy, Obedience, Rally, Agility

    Do you like the classes?
    Yes

    What would you change?
    More obedience during puppy classes. The only things she really covers are come, sit, stay, and name recognition. She covers housetraining/crating/ introducing new stimuli as well.

    What classes do you hope to take?
    I know we'll go on to most of the classes offered. Chase really enjoys them and I enjoy teaching him new things.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    Learning from other owners and the socialization offered for the dogs/puppies.
     
  7. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    Where were you doing Nosework at? It's something that has always interested me, and I'd love to try it - it seems like something Jack would be able to do even with his vision issues.

    Jack agrees with Frodo. An hour is entirely too long to stay focused and active! (We're going to try taking more breaks this week.)
     
  8. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    I want to do nosework at A Great Dog Now, but I heard it is expensive. I know the trainer though, which makes me want to take it there :p

    I know there is a place in Cottage Grove that apparently has really nice nosework classes and would probably be closer, I just need to figure out where that is, lol.
     
  9. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    I've heard pretty awesome things about A Great Dog Now - not so much the nosework aspect, but other classes. Maybe I'll email the trainer...:D

    I believe the one in Cottage Grove is Active Dog Sports Training.
     
  10. Moth

    Moth Mild and Slightly Nutty

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    What's your instructor like?

    There is more than one where we train. They usually work in pairs in the group classes. I have not met one of the girls there that I did not enjoy talking to and that did not know their stuff.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?

    Group classes run from $ 95 to $ 120. The cost depends on the type of class. The basic classes are in the lower cost range and the more specialized ones are the more expensive ones.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?

    We have taken from Puppy 1 through Advanced with both dogs. We have also taken a couple of their one shot work shops.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?

    Puppy, Obedience, Rally for fun, Agility foundation, Control Unleashed based classes, Work shops to target specific things like heeling, and of course one on one training.

    Do you like the classes?

    I keep going back :D

    What would you change?

    Nothing in the classes themselves they are well run and set up. Sometimes there are class members I wish I could shoot to the moon ;)

    What classes do you hope to take?

    We are planning on a CGC class for both dogs and we are going to do the Agility Foundations class. Unfortunately for more advanced Agility stuff we have to go and train elsewhere...

    What do you like about taking group classes?

    It is good for the dogs to learn to function with all these distractions and other people and dogs around. Also as before mentioned group is cheaper than one on one ;)
     
  11. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    The trainer at AGDN owns at least one reactive dog, so she's pretty good about those things!
     
  12. Taqroy

    Taqroy Active Member

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    What's your instructor like?
    I've had a couple different instructors. The very first EVAR is very fun - makes jokes, is very personable, knowledgeable but without being overwhelming. He's awesome and pretty much what I aspire to be when I someday get to teach classes.

    The woman we had for the second basic obed class was a lot different. VERY knowledgeable but with a far different presence. She's much quieter and kind of reserved but is always available for questions and advice. I was really intimidated by her at first but now that I've gotten to know her I really like her.

    My agility teacher is distracted, loud, smart, awesome at fixing my handling, incredibly un-punctual, and can be kind of abrupt. I like her but I can see how people might be put off by her abruptness.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    It depends. I think puppy classes start around $100, the two classes that are required for more advanced are about $140, the advanced classes can get up to $200.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    I've taken (with varying dogs) the first two classes (basic obedience classes), a tricks class, a freestyle class, nosework, multiple agility classes, a loose leash walking class, an outdoor hiking class, and the CGC class.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Uh...everything I listed plus Rally-O. Lol

    Do you like the classes?
    Love them. I wasn't a huge fan of freestyle but that's more because of ME than the dogs. Tipper seemed to like it ok, but I don't like being in front of a bunch of people who assume that I can dance (I can't ftr).

    What would you change?
    Not much. I really wish we had more room but that's not a very realistic change. I do wish that the instructors were a little more stringent about handlers keeping their off leash dogs near them in the classroom. In the upper level classes most dogs are off leash but some people let their dogs wander and it drives me crazy.

    What classes do you hope to take?
    I really want to take Rally but haven't found a class that lines up with my schedule yet.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    I enjoy seeing people work with their dogs. And there's a sense of camaraderie at the end of the group class that I think is really fun.
     
  13. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    Jane is thoroughly awesome! We took a sports foundation class there a couple years ago. Lots of fun. :D


    What's your instructor like?
    Fun and motivating and encouraging. Knew how to make training fun for both owner and dog! She was also good at getting to know all the dogs and tailoring things to better fit each one.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    Something like $110 for 6 weeks but it kind of depends on the class.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    At the moment, nothing, because it's been hard with my schedule. But we've taken a couple levels of obedience and an agility class.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Puppy, obedience, therapy, "for fun" agility and tricks classes, shy/fearful/aggressive dog classes

    Do you like the classes?
    For sure! I took the obedience classes as just a boredom buster during the winter. Didn't think I'd gain anything - Juno already knew all her basic commands. But a huge emphasis in these classes was getting the dogs to know these commands in ALL SCENARIOS so we'd do lots of goofy stuff in class, and our homework would be focused on getting out and about in the world and practicing this stuff. So Juno (and I!) came away learning way more than I thought.

    What would you change?
    Can't think of anything

    What classes do you hope to take?
    I really want to take the outdoor advanced obedience class. But this place has multiple trainers, and even though they're probably all awesome, there's only one trainer I want to use.... so it always works out that she's either not teaching it, or she's teaching it and it just doesn't fit my schedule.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    Everything! I love the distraction it provides, I love seeing how other people work with their dogs and being able to learn from the mistakes of others.
     
  14. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    What's your instructor like? Fantastic at problem solving. She's seen so much of everything, that she knows the minute signs of when to push a dog, when to lay off, she identifies the miniscule shoulder pull that caused the dog to miss the obstacle, etc. She's a registered agility judge with multiple agility champions, so she knows the sport backwards and forwards and has seen it trained all different ways. I completely trust her when she says she'd do xyz.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like? $185 for 7 weeks (1 hour classes). Classes are capped at 10 students in the low levels, and 8 in the higher ones.

    What kinds of classes are you taking? Agility coursework

    What kind of classes does the school offer? My instructor only does agility (and recently added flyball). There are other instructors who do obedience, rally, and cgc classes.

    Do you like the classes? Yeah! Otherwise I wouldn't be paying $26 to run a course each week!

    What would you change? So many logistical things. The instructor is amazing, and makes the best of what we have. The space really isn't big enough though, and the classes are too large. On a good night, I get to run a course 3x in that hour, because so much time is spent switching jump heights and other people running dogs. Unfortunately, that's the only way to make the operation viable in an area as expensive as DC. It's working though, from a business sense--there are wait lists for all the upper level classes (I am an assistant so I get "paid" by getting a guaranteed class slot...)

    It's a day care during the day, so classes can't start until after 7 (when the daycare dogs go home). There are 3 classes a night, so the last one goes from 9:30-10:30. That's LATE. I usually don't get home until at least 11:30 on those nights after putting away equipment and driving home.

    The owner of the company is looking into buying/renting an additional building somewhere so she can expand class offerings, which would alleviate a lot of issues.

    What classes do you hope to take? I think this is where we are for the foreseeable future. We're just running courses each week!

    What do you like about taking group classes? The camaraderie. It's really fun to go to trials and have a whole crew of people cheering for your dog.
     
  15. monkeys23

    monkeys23 New Member

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    I work with two different trainers, so will do each... first the clicker lady:
    What's your instructor like?
    She's super calm and has a really good way of actually creating positive discourse with her students rather than just giving orders.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    $20/class for dropping into the six week long Reactive dog class with Scouty right now. $30/lesson for private foundational and/or Rally lessons with the girls, its not any extra to bring both. $20 for semi-private lessons with a friend.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    Reactive dog class with Scout and learning Rally privately (she doesn't offer a specific Rally course) with Lily.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Mostly agility stuff as she's an agility trainer, but some performance puppy classes, foundational pre-agility stuff, reactive dog class, and freestyle (that she teaches at another venue).

    Do you like the classes?
    Yep, its super fun!


    What would you change?
    I'd prefer the box work and parallel games to be more intensive/structure. Also I feel like we're barely hitting the tip of the CU iceberg in group class, though my perspective may be different since I've been using CU a long time and am taking the group class for the well group environment. :)

    What classes do you hope to take?
    I'd like to take a more advanced CU/BAT style class, but I doubt she'd add that sort of thing.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    Actually my favorite part is the troubleshooting with other handler/dog pairs. I love watching and learning... someone would probably have fun being a trainer someday, ahem!
     
  16. monkeys23

    monkeys23 New Member

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    Okay so secondly is my TD/decoy that I work with.

    What's your instructor like?
    Really knowledgable and I consider him a friend. I have learned a LOT from him. He is really postive with the dogs and scary good at reading their body language and knowing exactly what they need.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    I'm kinda getting a special deal that I probably shouldn't spread around out of respect for others who work with him. I buy sessions in a package when I can which helps as well.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    We do bitework sessions that are basically puppy drive building tug sessions because thats what my rescue mutts are capable of.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Well its not a school, but he's got the experience to teach a variety of stuff from IPO, French Ring, OB, Tracking/SAR, puppy foundational games, etc.

    Do you like the classes?
    Highlight of our freaking week!


    What would you change?
    I wish I had a dog I could learn French Ringsport with. But life is what it is and I'm learning a lot even with my rescue mutts.

    What classes do you hope to take?
    See above.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    I love seeing what other handler/dog teams are working on. I love meeting some dogs, especially the nicely bred working dogs like that Czech/WG working line GSD bitch. Playing with gator babies occasionally is also the bomb! I have learned SO MUCH from watching other teams do work of varying levels.

    And also I think its hilarious that this trainer has two Malinois and the other trainer I work with has a Terv and a Groen. Fitting given what I like in dogs! :rofl1:
     
  17. BostonBanker

    BostonBanker Active Member

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    What's your instructor like?

    Wonderful. Pretty casual with her students, which I know a few people who don't like. She's a friend as well as an instructor, so I like it. Incredible at working with "different" dogs - she's seen Meg through all her crazy stages, going all the way back to when she was rolling on her back in fear, straight up through her agility championship. Very motivating - her students wind up pushing each other to be better/faster/run harder!

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    $135/6 weeks, one hour classes.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    Right now, Performance Puppy, which has sort of morphed into Intermediate Agility as the dogs have grown up. I took Good Manners when I first got Gusto, and Meg and I lived in the Competition Agility class for years.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Good Manners, CGC, Rally, Competition Obedience, Tricks and Games, Agility, 'Prep School' (crate games, restrained recalls, control skills for sports), Treiball, Disc, Nosework, Control Unleashed, Outdoor Distractions, Therapy Dog Prep.

    Do you like the classes?
    They are the highlight of my week usually.

    What would you change?
    I really wish they had an outdoor agility field, and/or a bigger indoor space. Putting in a full course makes for a very tight course. But I can't complain about the facilities otherwise - great footing, top notch equipment. And we aren't stuck in a freezing barn all winter!

    What classes do you hope to take?
    Gusto adores Treiball, and if I had more money I'd put him in it. Maybe this winter when I'm more desperate for ways to tire him out.

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    The camaraderie more than anything else. People tend to be pretty loyal to the facility, so we all know each other by now. We all train and trial together, know each other's dogs, and can have a great time pushing each other to be better. I'd be way less interested in agility if I was doing privates.
     
  18. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    What's your instructor like?

    Both are very knowledgeable. The older one is very well accomplished. I've learned a lot from her. The agility instructor is a new instructor but very good. She goes to lots of seminars and is always bringing back new advice.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?

    $80 for 6 weeks per dog for agility. $15 for each rally class (drop in) per dog.


    What kinds of classes are you taking?


    Summer is finishing agility foundations this week. Mia is on some form of agility. Finishing round 3 of agility classes. They both have been doing rally but we stopped for a while because of medical bills (me) and want to get back into it. Mia also did a family dog class this year just for fun and a few treibball classes but I can't afford 6 classes right now.


    What kind of classes does the school offer?


    Agility mostly at the one place. Both offer rally. The other offers Family Dog classes, conformation handling, freestyle, treibball, obed, CGC/therapy dog, and then things like control unleashed and competition foundations.

    Do you like the classes?

    Yep. Especially agility class. Definitely best part of the week.

    What would you change?

    Not much to be honest. Wish the agility place had an indoor field so we weren't cancelled for 115 degree weather. This is the fourth agility school I've gone to (for the agility trainer) and so far I really like it the best.


    What classes do you hope to take?


    If I get a bigger dog, I'd love to do disc work and take a class for that. And herding classes.

    What do you like about taking group classes?

    Most everything (except idiot newbie owners). I LOVE watching the other dogs and seeing how all the dogs learn and develop. There's dogs in my classes with totally different challenges than I have with my dogs. It's very educational to see those things worked through. I also just love hanging around dog people! No one looks at you funny if you talk dogs all the time there.
     
  19. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    Well I'm only in agility right now, when I can make it around work. And drop-in agility but that's more free-form and there isn't really an instructor...it's more peer review lol. I've taken classes at something like 5 facilities in multiple state but that would be a really long post so I'll just go with our current class: competition agility.

    What's your instructor like?

    There are two, both long-time agility competitors and judges. Great eyes, great advice. Very frank which I like. You do something dumb you know it...you do something good you know it. No holds barred and yelling happens lol. Some people don't like that but I'd take it any day over a lack of advise or having to conjole the "constructive criticism" out of an instructor like I'd had to do in the past.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?

    I'm a member so about $45/8 week class. I think it's $85 or so for nonmembers. Facilities aren't as expensive here and the clubs make most of their money from trials so the classes are as crazy-expensive.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?

    There's really only one Competition Agility masters level class and I have 3 dogs who should be in it (well Kim is sidelined right now but hopefully will be back soon) so I usually take Mira to Comp Ag since she benefits from it most and one of the others to drop-in, but will mix it up some weeks depending on what we need. Of if the next step down class is the same night and taught by someone I really like I'll enter one of the dogs in that class and bring whoever needs work running longer sequences to that class, since the Comp class is usually highly technical but shorter sequences. Different vibes.


    What kind of classes does the school offer?


    Agility (all levels), Obedience (all levels), Confo (all levels), Rally, Tracking, basic home companion type stuff. But it's pretty split...the agility people run their part, obedience theirs, etc.

    Do you like the classes?

    I love working with my dogs, agility, getting better at agility with my dogs, and agility people. The class brings all that together in one place.

    What would you change?

    Not much. Just wish work didn't keep me from going. We go to a different club through the winter since their indoor facility is nicer.


    What classes do you hope to take?


    Erm well over the years we've taken all sorts of classes and I imagine we'll continue to do so...I'm pretty well addicted to agility so that gets class priority...I tend to do most training on my own anyway.

    What do you like about taking group classes?

    Agility people rock ;) Also when you get in a class with like-minded folks with different running styles it's really fun to see the different methods of handing a given sequence, how well they work (or don't!), how the dog responds, etc. Kicks learning into a higher gear especially when you stay engaged through the whole class. Back when Kim & Web were coming up it was also great for building the ability to work at agility through distractions but now my main takeaway is the feedback and the peer-competition and exposure to different ideas.
     
  20. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    St. Louis, MO
    What's your instructor like?
    Awesome. I adore all of the instructors I take classes from, I wouldn't take their classes if I didn't. All of our classes are taught by very knowledgeable people that have the same training mindset as I do.

    If you don't mind sharing, what are the prices like?
    They vary, the 2x2 weaves class I teach is only $60, the masters agility class taught by Terry Smorch is $150.

    What kinds of classes are you taking?
    Just finished a crate games class geared towards start line stays with Zuma. Bouncing around different PK classes with Zinga to utilize the environment.

    What kind of classes does the school offer?
    Puppy k through advanced obedience. Several different levels of impulse control classes, nosework, competition obedience, trick classes, CGC.. and of course agility up the wazoo.

    Do you like the classes?
    Yes!

    What would you change?
    Not a whole lot. There are positives to each trainer and curriculum, I'm constantly learning new things or new ways to approach problems.

    What classes do you hope to take?
    I've pretty much taken every class. If I could teach any class it would be a clicker-focused tricks class that is in the works now!

    What do you like about taking group classes?
    I looove the environment and distractions group classes provide, even with my reactive dog.
     

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