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My puppy is going to be able to start puppy training classes next week. I rang the school that I've been recommended to use and they told me they need me to bring a half check lead and they don't 'treat reward'. I've heard different opinions about half check leads and I'm concerned that this training sounds as if it might be unnecessarily harsh. What do you think? She's a very obedient, intelligent happy puppy!!
 

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All I can say is the class we go to use a lot of treats as rewards and Gillie is growing into a well mannered pup. I went to a class with my old Boxer who didn't treat and used check leads and I left in tears after the first class and never went back (it was near Haslemere in Surrey in case you are in this area!)
 

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I've been to both types of classes. The one I went to with Daisy was all nicey-nicey and lots of treats and to be honest she probably needed a bit more than that. I have taken Leo, Alfie and Watson to a non-reward class (no treats anyway, just lots of praise) and they have been fine. They recommend half checks there too and we were taught how to use them properly. They aren't nasty, or dangerous, as long as they are used correctly.

Hope to help


Vicki
 

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I feel treat reward based training is the best way to go with Labs...

Is it worth you going along without your doglet to see how things work, then if you're not happy, find a different class?
 

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Go along without your dog first and watch. If you don't like the look of it, don't go back.

The puppy classes I went to were all positive, reward-based training - treats, toys, voice - whatever worked best for each pup. The people who took my class also recommended half-checks though, and they are APDT people (ie don't tolerate harsh handling in any way). They showed us how to use it, and that's the important bit IMO.

For me, I found a half-check invaluable while I was training loose-lead walking. Bracken was very strong and on a normal collar she'd be gasping for breath and nearly choking herself in her excitement straining to get to another person/dog. No amount of cheese or sausage grabbed her attention.

I like half-checks, but I know not everyone does. I tend to use slip-leads now, but if someone else is walking my dog (dog walker or my mum for example, Bracken goes with her half-check and clip-on lead).
 
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I would want to be able to use something as a reward, even if it wasn't treats. I know some youngsters are happy with an ear rub and being told they are Good Dogs but with others, the lure of playing with the other pups will override any ear rubbing, so you need to up the anti.

Also I'm not sure why they would insist on you using a half check before you even had a problem :? . Yes I would and have used a half check to teach an older dog to walk nicely.....but I wouldn't want to use one on a pup until I had at least tried to get it to walk nicely by other softer means first.

I think I would go along and watch a class to see if you would feel comfortable using their methods, before actually joining. :wink:
 

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Personally, I would not go to a puppy class that said bring a half-check lead and no treats. Just my opinion.

I have no idea why a half-check lead is necessary for the blank canvas a puppy is... plus, treat reward based training is so simple with food driven labs.
 

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If I am completly honest I have never treat trained any of my dogs but tons of praise and a throw of a ball has always worked for my guys, and as for the half check before having any problem surprises me, i use a puppy collar to get the pup used to having something round their neck but use slip leads to walk them ( obviuosly being sensible with it and not dragging and choking my pup) and have never had a problem .

Go along and just watch to start with and see if you like and agree with the method if you dont then find another training class.
 

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When i was going to take Lucy to a puppy class when she was a puppy i left Lucy in the house and me and my dad went up and watch it to see what it like and i said i would not mind tack her to it and we had to yous a collar and a lead and we were a loud to yous treats for it and they did had a wee shop there for the puppies and when i get my puppy i will be tack her to it we were a loud to tack a dog bed to it but i yous the vet bedding .
 
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