The holiday season was about to start last year when I signed up for dog training through The Woof Waggin, a dog care and boarding facility in town. I started taking Roscoe and Cooper there shortly after hearing at the dog park they offered day care services to help dogs socialize.
Before the class I thought I was fairly knowledgeable about dogs and was doing most of the right things for mine and their health …. needless to say I had a lot to learn and still do. What prompted me to sign up was the initial evaluation by the Woff Waggin on their first visit. They just don’t let your dog hang out with anyone they evaluate them first and put them with other dogs that will help whatever challenges they might have, if any. The evaluations came back for both as nervous and anxious around other dogs, in general they didn’t know how to act. That was surprising especially about Roscoe. So that got me thinking if I couldn’t read how they acted around other dogs what else was I missing ? Enter training.
The class I signed up for was one to two hours every Monday, with a week skipped here or there for holidays. We covered the basics of walking, sit, stay, going in and out of doors and ignoring on command. Even though that doesn’t sound like much for the time it was plenty. I learned ways to accomplish these I would have never thought of on my own and since neither Copper or Roscoe excelled at any, they’d have a chance now.
The training was really for us not the dogs. How do we react when “anything” happens, what do we say or do when they’re bad or good. Sending confusing signals and not being consistent were things I didn’t realize I was doing, but I was. I’m sure I still do that today but hopefully less. We have progress and walks are more enjoyable. If things aren’t going the way I want them to I can change it. We can go through doors or gates without me getting run over and if it’s time to leave something alone it’s left alone, most of the time…. still working on that one.
So if you have dogs and are challenged like me find a trainer take a class or two, you might just learn a little about yourself, and your dogs might be happier too. Special thanks to everyone at The Woof Waggin for hosting and Nikki Ivey for the training.