Training and Obedience > Dog Classes 30-45 minutes! (18 replies)
Dog Classes 30-45 minutes!
by Vixen on 01 July 2012 - 14:27
|I am astonished when I see or hear of Dog Training Clubs that run Classes which only last for 30-45 minutes. These Owners and their dogs are (usually) with the Trainer at the Club just once a week - obviously imperative opportunity for the Trainer. Members are aiming to further their understanding and learning. To then practice correctly what they are learning. The Trainer can observe, amend, guide and teach the Owners sufficiently, in order that they are able to continue until the following week. This in less than one hour???|
by muttlover25 on 01 July 2012 - 19:31
Most of the clubs around me offer 1 hour sessions. Our personal training classes last a minimum of 1 hour but usually go over if there are any questions or problems. 30 minutes seems pretty short to me! I would hope that would be 1 dog and 1 trainer only not a group class.
by Vixen on 01 July 2012 - 19:37
|Hello, No unfortunately, this is the concern, they are Group Classes. Maybe there are just 2 or 3 in the Class, but I doubt it.|
by momosgarage on 03 July 2012 - 22:12
|Busy people with demanding careers, that can truly afford a big expensive dog, generally can not set aside more than an hour or two a week to work with a professional outside thier home. Is it enough time to get dog to SchH1 level? No way, but its better than nothing. Don't knock these people, EVER. They need to start somewhere. If the dog is just a pet, an hour a week is more than enough, espcially if they practice simple stuff regularly. Also they may like it and get more serious with the next dog. Clubs need casual members that don't train more than an hour or two a week. Without them the next generation (thier kids!), won't have any exposure to the sport (this includes all venues and clubs, not just schutzhund ).|
by Vixen on 04 July 2012 - 00:12
|Momosgarage, Not sure I fully understand the meaning of your Message. The reference is regarding the Instructors (who train the Members) who are only allowing limited time to help the Owners and dogs to learn and progress. |
Equally, there are many demands on many busy people in today's world - but we all need to recognise our personal responsibilities and aims, and therefore organise accordingly.
Neither do I understand the term: "just a pet" - if they share our lives they are pets. I sometimes wonder if this term is presumed by some to seem or sound weak. However, dogs can learn and be taught a working requirement, whatever that may be. Again, interest, aim, requirement, commitment and focus in learning and teaching falls at the feet of the Owner, and a good Instructor to inspire, encourage and guide.
Remembering too that Dog Owners generally become more interested and keen to continue, when they see improvement and progression.
Simply 'Treading water' is not going to inspire an Owner and will certainly not help the dog!
So a Group Class for less than an hour a week, is sadly selling short of giving Members time to build up understanding and ability. There is more to training than merely exercises - developing respect betweeen Owner and dog working together is highly important.
by Sheesh on 04 July 2012 - 00:53
|I would hesitate to judge anyone's method of training without first going to see for myself. I subscribe to the theory that no training is better than bad training... So, if it is good training for 45 minutes twice a week... Go for it, and hopefully each session leaves the dogs and handlers wanting more. ;-)|
by magdalenasins on 06 July 2012 - 21:49
|Doesn't seem like too short a time when you really need to train a dog for 3-4 minutes at a time...|
by Vixen on 07 July 2012 - 21:03
|3 - 4 minutes???? Are you referring to training with Veteran dogs?|
by beetree on 07 July 2012 - 22:58
|Actually, I think it takes a very short time to teach a smart dog, anything. It is the conditioning and maintenance of this, that changes outcomes.|
by Vixen on 08 July 2012 - 02:57
|Hello Beetree, Dogs are quite able and receptive, but it is actually the Owners that need the guidance and understanding to teach the dogs appropriately and correctly.|
Once Owner and dog together are confident and proficient, the Owner will often merely just practice the same - rather than train! They keep seeing what they expect to see, treading the same water, rather than closely observing, and aiming to polish further.
by Prager on 08 July 2012 - 16:45
|Attention span of a young dog is no more then 10 minutes. The training session should be ended just before the decline of the attention span which is about at 2- 5 minutes depending on the drive of the pup. |
16 week old pup should not be trained more then 2 minutes at a time. 60 one minute sessions are sixty sessions but one 60 minutes session is only one treacherous session for a young pup. Quit when the pup wants to do more and not when he is exhausted. Pups will bring into the session the last memory of former session. Please keep in mind that during the group class not all young dogs work all that duration of the class.
The obedience group class sessions should be mainly to educate the owner and not to train the dog. The actual training then should be done by the owner at home in 2-3 daily - 2- 5 minutes sessions and then by using the learned commands in every day life. The owner should work the dog in variety environments. Indoor, back and front yard and in near by park or parking lot of a shopping center.
The next group class should review the quality of the training done by the owners at home and correcting of owners/handlers and dog's mistakes. Then the new exercise should be taught and learned by the handlers/owners. Questions and answers on the end.
For the class of 5 students 30- 45 minutes is enough and for class of 12 - 16 students 45-60 minutes. I do not recommend classes bigger then 16 if done by one trainer.
There may be different systems, like training camps, daily classes, SchH training and so on where the system above is not applicable.
by Vixen on 08 July 2012 - 17:53
|Well, Training Clubs, and the Instructor/Trainer, along with their individual knowledge and experience varies considerably. (Which is why it is important to compare or have recommendation, but still compare).|
Training with puppies and up to 16 weeks, requires recognition of not only the work but working together. Personally, (with a very young little 'warrior' - I focus carefully on the interaction between us (not the time) - keeping the enthusiasm and interest, but equally bringing out that little more, so the youngster does not too flippantly decide: "Enough thank you" - but I quickly step in with a message of: "Come on, don't quit, give me a little more....."
When there are youngsters in a Club Situation, the Instructor/Trainer must equally recognise when and how to work and rest. Remembering there are exercises that are quite active, and others restful.
Then the majority who on average are older dogs, need time to work together on various areas that are required and appropriate. There is so much to learn, and to ensure that everyone is on the right track. Having an hour together, gives everyone the opportunity of time to observe, learn and demonstrate their work. Some sections may require either two or three working together or an individual. I personally plan and adapt the programme of the Class accordingly.
We quite often run out of time - and if those Owners and dogs were fed-up or bored, (apart from being mortified myself that I had caused this) - I would ensure the Class was reduced in time, but this is not necessary as they are all enjoying the experience, and that enjoyment creates ability and achievement.
by Rass on 15 July 2012 - 13:45
|I am unsure the venue you are discussing. Is it a Schutzhund (now IPO) club? Or is it an OBEDIENCE CLASS. |
I find an oedience CLASS with 8 people in it all working at the same time going for an hour TOO LONG. Too long for my dog.. absolutely. Actual training time with my dogs is usually no more than 20 minutes per dog and even that session is broken up with things like frisbee toss and tug of war!
I have taken a lot of Obedience classes and have found less is better. Neither dog was engaged by the end of an hour.. because they were shot at the end of a half hour, tops.
If the class is combined levels of dogs that is a mistake.. need to try to get similar levels of dogs in one class and teach more classes as opposed to having variable levels in one class.
Not really sure what you are describing here though.
by Vixen on 15 July 2012 - 17:07
|I teach Obedience, (not for the dog to merely Perform exercises, but to be listening, and responsive to what is required of the them). Equally, an emphasis on understanding a dog's world, not the way we may choose to see it.|
I look to bring Owner and dog out of their comfort zone, i.e. some people consider they are 'training' when in fact they are just 'Practising' the same, as if practising the same is going to improve! Improve what, the same? I mix attention to working, and everyday appropriate good control.
We never finish training whether at the end or even inbetween with big play. (Apologies, as I recognise most do, but we are not looking to give a message to our dogs that 'training/working' with their Owner is either boring or miserable, and consequently celebrate when finished. Quite the opposite engaging with their 'Person' is challenging and interesting, and special together.
Just as an example, what do you do in a Class with regard to a Formal Recall?
by Jeffs on 15 July 2012 - 18:13
For the most part, the training sessions are for training the owners - not the dog.
by Vixen on 15 July 2012 - 18:44
|Training is vastly concerned with the Owner learning, understanding, delving and connecting with a non-human species, and then moving forward ..... both together.|
Once a week keeps the Instructor/Trainer up to the minute of what is going on between Owner and dog.
I take nothing away from your achievement with your dog. But would you not equally agree (and perhaps met yourself) dogs that perform well in a given situation, or have Certificates, or a specific Title, but outside of that specialised environment ..... a different story entirely! (Hopefully, this is not relevant in your case, but presumably you are aware of this).
by Jeffs on 19 July 2012 - 03:50
I take different classes for different things. I take a class that's intended to focus on the dog being a good companion, with a time spend on Q and A about that's going on with the dog. The focus less is on obedience and more on good manners. Understanding the need to tell your dog what to do in certain situations instead of letting the dog make it's on decisions. For example, when waiting in line at the check out stand, telling the dog to sit instead of letting the dog do what it wants to do. Discussing how to allow strangers to greet my dog and how to spot when my dog is telling it's had enough of a particular stranger. Learning how to protect my dog from other dogs and understanding fear aggression. Trying to get a calm, stable dog.
I take a rally class that focuses more on obedience. This is my favorite class because it's taugh me alot about communicating to me dog and helped me understand how my dog learns. He needs this class because he needs the mental challenge. He's a smooth fox terrier. Plus I like to show him off during walks. He does a real nice transition from a "here" to a "heal".
Both of these classes are once every other week. They aren't like traditional classes. There's no beginning and ending - more like going to the gym. We don't work on downs in week 1, sits in week 2, etc. A lot of things are revisted.
I also do a class with a guy who works with aggressive dogs. My dog has some aggression issues, unfortunately. But to be honest, if he didn;t have the aggression issues, I wouldn't have gotten him involved in training. None of the dogs I had growing up had any formal training. Now, I can't imagine owning a dog that was involved in a regular training program.
Oh, back to the aggressive dog training. It's kind of like shultzhund lite. Comes in real handy in EarthDog. We've just started this summer. He's ready for the Junior title. It was fun going to the first club training for EarthDog. They brought out the cage to show him the rats. I put the shultzhund lite training to work and got him going with the rats. The person showing the rats told me to stop him and I gave him one command and he stopped barking. I said heal, and he snapped to a heal.
I've been working with himn with tunnels and a rat. I put him in a sit. Say "tunnel" and he shoots into the tunnel.
He's a real good dog. He's strong willed and I don't fully trust him with little kids - he's got big teeth. Whenever kids want to pet him I give them treats to feed him. Now he associates kids with treats. Oh, and he won't go to a person unless I tell him.
He's hillarious. When going up and down stairs, he waits until I start up the still.
Before training, I was having a hard time walking him. Just trying to lock the door on a walk was a challenge. Now, he sits, I open the door, I wait a second and then say lets go. Once outside, I tell him to wait and he waits while I lock the door. And then we head off to a walk. When I let him out of SUV, I wait until he's calm, then I open the door to his crate, wait a second or to, then say lets go. He hits the ground and I say "here". He sits in front of and stays in a site as I close his crate and get ready and then we are off.
My point about about the once a week classes.... It was an 8 week course. Each week built on what we learned last week. I felt pressured to learn what was taught each week before the next class, which is not how the dog wants to learn. The worst thing is when the owner gets frustrated because my dogs completely shut out, which would make me even more frustrated.
Years later when I started up with the trainer I currently work with, I had 2 epiphanies about training. One dog was having a hard time stayingin a down in a very chaotic environment. I started to get frustrated and saw the dog tune me out. I changed my attitude, stopped the pressure, kept it super easy with lots and lots of rewards and praise. The dog can stay in a down as apack of dogs runs by with another pack barking like crazy. The other event occurred when my dog was having a hard time picking up something new. I didn't push it and backed off to something he knew to end the training. A couple of days later I asked him to do the thing he was having a hard time with. He nailed it. taught me to let him learn on his own time.
by Vixen on 19 July 2012 - 10:14
|Hello Jeffs, Thank you for taking the time to explain your Club. I think when an 'Obedience Club and Classes' are mentioned, they obviously conjure up different perpectives of what this entails, (depending on someone's own personal experiences of them, and of course their Trainer).|
Personally, I do not separate obedience and respect, so I help and guide people to understand the dog and gain respect. The Classes are always varied, and include behavioural work within the lesson. Observing the progress of Owner and their dog is extremely enjoyable, as I know they (Owner and dog) are learning beyond just an obvious response to a given command.
All the very best to you and your dog.
by Prager on 19 July 2012 - 16:04
| Good and most effective training during learning faze, as far as time spend goes:|
Short, frequent sessions, based on motivation which is most appreciated by the dog. Long sessions with endless repetitions are detrimental especially if conducted during learning faze of the training. Sometimes I recommend only one command sessions where for example the handler calls the dog from the far end of the back yard to the door to"come" . Dog comes and sits and gets reward ( food or prey) . Than the handler goes in and leave dog to think about it and wishing for more.
During the class the training is for the handler to learn what to do at home. When the handler gets it and is doing well with his dog then the class can end.
Wolf or wolf hybrid ( who is not dog -I know) is learning best if at all from one command sessions. Dog has different attention span but the the principal is the same.