February 25, 2019

Why Every Pooch and ESA Needs Dog Obedience Training

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pup undergoing Dog Obedience Training

Does your dog jump on strangers? Are they difficult to walk with? If you’ve answered yes to these questions, then your pooch will need dog obedience training. To learn more about how you can teach your dog doggie manners, read on!

What is Dog Obedience Training?

Dog obedience training, in its very essence, is a form of hands-on educational class for owners and their pups. Obedience training will involve teaching your dog basic commands and doggie manners.

People often fail to understand that obedience training is not just about teaching your dog to sit or stay.

It is critical to remember that this form of dog training also teaches your dog the proper social skills required in public spaces. As well, it will teach you how to maintain full control of your dogs’ behavior.

Emotional support animals do not require specialized training to be an ESA; however, it’s extremely wise to teach them a few obedience rules so that when you fly (or live!), they can behave properly.

Dog Agility Training vs Obedience Training

By enrolling your dog in obedience training classes, you will create a strong foundation for them in future advanced training. Dog obedience training classes are merely designed to teach your dog basic skills like how to:

  • Sit, stay, and come to you on command.
  • Walk calmly and correctly on a leash.
  • Meet and greet other dogs and strangers.
  • Walk off-leash by your side.

Obedience training classes will also help you teach your dog how to avoid any distractions by focusing on you at all times.

Dog agility training, on the other hand, is a lot more different compared to obedience training. Agility training is a sports competition. And, during these competitions dog owners must guide their dog through an obstacle course that may consist of pole weaving, jumps, teeter-totters, and tunnels.

For a pooch to compete in agility courses, owners must have full control of their dog.

In other words, competing dogs must follow the direction and guidance of their owners at a fast pace. Failure to comply with the owners’ commands would indicate that the dog is distracted and that the owner is not in control of the situation.

dog jumping over pole during dog agility training course

Is the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program a Good for Your Puppy Dog?

During the 1960s the American Kennel Club made it their goal to ensure dogs become well-respected members of the community.

The American Kennel Club firmly believes that for this to happen, our canine companions must display good behavior and proper social skills at all times.

And so, to help owners attain such a goal, the AKC created the Canine Good Citizen Program. 

This program is open to dogs of any age and breed. Dog owners are encouraged to follow and teach their furry-friends the Canine Good Citizen ten essential skills.

By learning and mastering these ten skill sets, your dog can receive certification for their excellent behavior.

PetSmart Dog Training vs the Canine Good Citizen Program

The PetSmart dog training program is a lot similar to the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program. The PetSmart dog training program can be broken down into different classes which are a:

  • Puppy training group class: the puppy training classes at PetSmart will aim to teach you how to understand your dogs’ behavior and how to communicate with them better. This introductory class will also help you teach your puppy basic commands like how to come when called.
  • Beginner training group class: the beginner training group is suited for dogs 5 months and older. In this 6-week training course, you will learn how to control your dog on a leash, and you’ll teach your dog basic commands like, “leave it.”
  • Intermediate training group class: in this 6-week training class your dog will learn more commands like “heel,” “to bed,” and more! In this class, your dog will learn how to walk off-leash by your side and how to avoid distractions.
  • Advanced training group class: The advanced training class is perfect for dog owners looking to strengthen their pups social skills and manners. This class will include everything from mastering basic commands to mastering doggie good manners.

Both the PetSmart dog training program and the Canine Good Citizen program are great dog obedience training classes.

Both training programs can cost anywhere between $125 to $150 for a 6-week course. The only difference is that only the Canine Good Citizen program offers a final test and is recognized by the AKC.

5 Reasons Why You Should Enroll Your ESA in Dog Training Classes

Emotional support animals require no formal training to qualify as an assistance animal. Although these types of assistance animals need no training, it is critical to teach your emotional support dog basic obedience training.

  1. You and your ESA will learn the basics: By enrolling your ESA in obedience training classes, your emotional support dog will learn all the basic commands like sit, stay, come, and heel.
  2. You will learn to control your ESA: A dog that passes an obedience training class will become a lot easier to handle when in public places or at home.
  3. You won’t have to worry about your ESA getting rejected: Two laws protect emotional support animals from discrimination, the Air Carrier Access Act and the Fair Housing Act. These laws state that a person with an emotional support animal has the right to reasonable accommodation. However, should an emotional support animal be poorly trained, menacing or disruptive to the public then they will be denied reasonable accommodation.
  4. Build a strong bond together: Obedience training is not just about teaching your dog how to be a good boy! It is instead a one-on-one exercise that involves trust, loyalty, and friendship. By working with your dog, and by training them daily, you and your dog will begin to strengthen the human-animal bond.
  5. Better your ESAs mental health & yours! Learning new things and continuously remaining vigilant is excellent for a dogs’ mental health. Obedience training not only provides an excellent source of mental stimulation to your dog, but the ability to work alongside your pooch will also improve your mental health.

dog trainer using clicker training

The Commands Your Pooch will Learn in Dog Obedience Classes

When you enroll your dog in an obedience training class, they will learn all kinds of commands. Some basic level commands include:

  • Sit
  • Stay
  • Heel
  • Down
  • Come

As your dog becomes progressively obedient, you will be able to teach them more advanced commands like:

  • Shake hands
  • Go to bed
  • Leave it
  • Take it
  • Growl
  • Bark (or speak)
  • Roll Over
  • Place
  • By my side (or with me)

Do Puppy Classes Teach Obedience?

Puppy classes teach the very basics when it comes to obedience training. In general, when you enroll a 10-week-year-old puppy in a puppy training class your dog will learn:

  • To be comfortable with a leash and collar on its neck.
  • To come when called
  • To sit and stay

3 Tips for Dog Owners Who Want to Teach their Puppy Obedience Training!

  1. Choose the right training course! Choosing the right obedience training class is crucial to your dogs’ success. If you’ve got a 9-week old puppy then you should enroll them in a group puppy training class first. But, if you’ve got a 5-month-old puppy who is hard to handle, then consider taking private lessons rather than group sessions.
  2. Be prepared! The main reason why many dogs fail obedience training classes will be because their owner isn’t prepared. Prior to attending a dog training class make sure you have all the proper equipment like a leash, collar, training collars, a clicker, and a bag of treats of course!
  3. Train your dog after hours! A few 60-minute classes each week will not be enough for a dog to become obedient! Owners need to take the initiative and continue training their pooch at home as well.

So, How do You Find Dog Training Classes Near Me?

Finding a dog obedience class is pretty easy! Firstly, if you would prefer to enroll your pooch in the AKC Canine Good Citizen training classes; consult the AKC website for more information.

However, if you’re looking to enroll your pooch in any dog obedience training class then you can try the following methods for searching for a good trainer:

  • Visit your local pet stores and pet superstores! Many pet stores will have dog obedience training classes you can sign up for.
  • Talk to your veterinarian or breeder about what they think is the best dog training class in your area.
  • Visit your local dog parks and talk to people! Often, other dog owners will be happy to make recommendations.

emotional support dogs in training

Training a Puppy is no Walk in the Park, so Make sure you Find the Right Dog Trainer to Help you!

Obedience training classes are an excellent way for any dog to master basic commands. By enrolling your dog in an obedience training class you’ll not only gain a smarter and calmer dog, but you will also earn a newfound bond with your pooch.

Common Questions

Do Emotional Support Dogs Require Obedience Trainig?

What Can My Dog Learn in an Obedience Training Class?

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