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Hi Everyone,

Does your Labrador attend training classes? (Or have they done so in the past?)

How did they get on - did the classes help them alot?

Do you have any recommendations for other Lab owners, for dog trainers in the UK (or elesewhere) ?

Please share your experiences - thank you. :wink:
 

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My dog, Zack, hasn't attended training classes yet but i am looking for classes, or a trainer. for an older dog (he is 13 months). Most of the classes locally are only for dogs up to 20weeks.

I do wish i had taken him to classes when he was younger as i think it would have helped with his socialisation around other dogs. He has a tendency to bark at other dogs when we are out on walks, and as he is big and black, owners aren't keen to let him near their dogs. When he does get the chance to 'check out' other dogs close up he is quite timid, but really enjoys it.

Hopefully classes will help him calm down around other dogs and their owners will stop to let them say 'hi' rather than crossing the road to avoid him!!!

Ever hopeful

Elaine
 

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Hi Julie

Smudge will be starting training classes on Wednesday, 9th February. I am going along this Wednesday (2nd) for the initial chat. As he is over 20 weeks, he is classed as a young adult which really made me smile!

I too would like to get him more used to other dogs. I'll let you know how it goes.

All the best,
Nicola.
 

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I've been taking Harvey for a few weeks now, since he was 13 weeks old. He absolutely loves it! The class currently consists of a border terrier, daschund, collie cross and Harv (who is the noisiest!), all under 6 months old

So far the main thing Harv has learned is that training class means treats!, and lots of them! :lol:

I have found them invaluble, as much for confirming what I am doing already is correct as for learning new techniques. But its very much a case of the more I learn the more I realise how little i knew to begin with!

In my opinion classes with a good trainer are essential for inexperienced dog owners such as myself

Cheers
Nigel
 

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Having said no, I have just booked Molly on her first training classes,
a 4 week beginner course (unfortunately she is too old for the puppy classes, which isn't great as I held off till she was 16 weeks old before enquiring!)....
As it turns out she may be too advanced for that anyway.

It's "clicker" training, which we started to use, and then stopped for whatever reason, anyone got experience with this method?.

I'm looking forward more to the socialisation aspect for her...
I'll let you know how it goes!
 

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Hi all

I went to the first class this evening. It was with no dogs for the first night so that the trainer could explain their methods etc. Chris stayed at home with Smudge!

It will be clicker training. As far as I can gather from this evening this basically means that when he does something you like, you click the clicker and then give him a treat. He then begins to associate this with the treat. I'm not 100% sure of how this will work yet, but a small initial test on Smudge when I got home worked quite well.

They couldn't sing the praise of 'Kongs' highly enough. As Julie has previously recommended, they think that stuffing the kongs to keep your dog occupied is excellent.

There was one dog there - a beautiful 18 month old black rescue lab called Barney. He will be coming to class, though the other class to us as he is slightly older. The trainer demonstrated with him and boy did he love those kongs!

I can't wait for next week now - Smudge will get to meet all the other doggies and I'll see how well behaved he is or indeed isn't!

I'll keep you posted.

All the best,
Nicola.
 

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Hi,
My younger choc Lab has been going to training classes since she was 12 weeks old, she loves going and I've learnt new things too. The first class I went to had 6 puppies in it - 3 were choc Labs! The method used at our classes is clicker training which I'm a big fan of. We started in the puppy class but moved to the next class up quite soon as I'd already done some basic training with her and any day we are meant to be taking our Bronze KC award, it's just that my Lab decided to come into season last week!
Clare
 

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Molly had her first training class last night, and we're ever so proud of her!
It was a small class (only 3 dogs), a 6month old Retriver, who was huge!, and a year old greyhound.
Molly easily kept up with them, and was more reliable at the "down" than the retriever was!.
We now have some homework to keep us busy this week, mostly concerned with keeping her attention.

It was really useful to get some formal training, as I had given up on clicker training previously, it was amazing to see Molly learn so fast (after a few minutes she was happily lying on the floor for 10seconds waiting for a click!),

I think the most important thing I learnt about clicker training is there isn't a need to click and follow with a treat immediately, it can be 5-10 seconds afterwards!. In fact they reccomended that you leave the treats away from you, and go to get one after a click.

Roll on next week, I expect her to be jumping through a flaming hoop while singing the Macarena.
 

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Training

Tia, my chocolate lab started her training at 12 weeks (she is now 17 weeks). We go to puppy socialisation classes which is like going to mothers and toddlers for dogs! We have done the sit, down, stand and the "leave it" command which is very useful! We have another chocolate, a retriever, Westie, cocker spaniel (which is very nervous) and two King Charles in our group and Tia has made loads of new mates. We have just learnt heel training on lead which is pretty hard, but Tia is a natural because she loves her treats and heel work involes lots of treats! When she has completed this course, (in about 2 weeks), we can continue on to Novice classes which I think we may do. I would recommend them to anyone, as my last dog had behavourial problems and would have benefited from something like this at a young age.
 

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im trying to find a training school in nottingham,near to where i live,and i cant find one anywhere.there are quite alot in nottingham but none close to home,and its a bit difficult getting to and fro without transport.
with tiggy being locked in a barn for 3 yrs,she doesnt know how to interact with humans or dogs even tho she was locked away with loads of other labs,she didnt play she had to fight for food and basically fight to survive.
she is learning commands and she is housetrained now,its just we want her to come to us and not run away when we go to her.
the only time we get to fuss her is when she is in her bed.
she wont go to her food if we are there watching.she runs off when we get her lead out.
she doesnt like toys she not eat any treats.
basically she is a nervous dog and thats why i would like to take her to a training school to help her interact..
HELP..
elaine. tiggy's mum.[/b][/i]
 

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Hi Flaine
Well done for rescuing Tiggy. It sounds like she had an awful start, but good to hear she's coming on. You may find it useful to start with a one to one session where they trainer will be able to observe what's happening and give advice on training tailored to her needs.
http://www.apdt.co.uk/list_trainers.asp
Also, the kennel club keeps a list of classes. If you contact them and give them your area, they will print off a list.
http://www.the-kennel-club.org.uk
If you find any classes near you, I recommend you go along to observe, to ensure you are happy with the methods used.
HTH :)
 

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Scooby has just started classes -the KC Good Civilian Puppy Foundation Course.

He is 20 weeks old now. I tried to get him in at the puppy classes run by the vets but it was fully booked and then he was too old to join the next lot.

As I live in the country and do not have many visitors, he is not used to seeing many people or dogs.

At the first training session he was just too overwhelmed and was in his own world - lots of other dogs!! 8O

He managed to sit but wouldn't lie down or anything else! He is really good at home (apart from pulling on the lead) and has learned lots of commands.

Maybe next week will be better. :p
 

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Hi Tracey
Well done for taking him. I wouldn't worry about him being too distracted - it is his first time and there's so many other things to see. :D Many dogs won't lie down if they feel unsure of dogs around them. It's great taking them to classes where they have to learn to concentrate on you, in spite of the other dogs, and I'm sure you'll see lots of progress as the weeks go on.
I'm not a huge fan of vets puppy parties. There are good ones, but too often they're supervised by vet nurses who have very limited and sometimes no experience of puppy/dog behaviour. At this age, bad experiences can have a lifelong effect. I've heard of awful ones with free for all puppy play, which can terrify a timid puppy and turn a boisterous pup into a bully. Much better to to go to puppy socialisation classes with a trainer. Although there will be socialisation with other pups, it will be controlled, and an important part will be getting pup to focus on the owner.
Good luck, at this age they're like sponges and the more you can teach them before they hit the 'teenage' period the better. You will reap the rewards of the effort you put in now.
HTH:)
 

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Hi Tracey

We couldn't get Smudge to lie down either but I managed in the end by kind of having one leg make an arch (with my foot on the floor) so there was a space underneath it and then holding the treat the other side - he had to lie down then to get under my leg. Not very elegant but very effective!

We've been practising more at home and now we can get him to lie down from sit by putting the treat up to him and then kind of dragging it away near the floor. It's amazing how quickly they can pick these things up. I can't guite get the 'leave' command yet though and our remote control continues to suffer at his hands (or should that be teeth?!).

Good luck with your training. Smudge actually goes to a puppy class but at 23 weeks he is a tad older than the others! It's still great for him though as he doesn't get to see many people or other dogs normally.

All the best,
Nicola.
 
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