By Melissa Viera
Group classes are a fun challenge for dogs of all levels. Although being in a group environment with other dogs might sound a little bit intimating, the benefits are well worth the effort. Group classes provide a distracting and enriching environment to best prepare dogs for real life encounters with other dogs and people.
Dogs young and old can enjoy group classes. Even at almost 13 years old, my dog Riley enjoys dropping into group classes (especially Scent Games). After the basics are learned dogs need an outlet to continue excersing their minds and practicing being on their best behavior, and people tend to stick to a regular training schedule with the structure of regular classes, and the support from their classmates.
Is Group Class Right for Your Dog?
Dogs of all ages and levels can participate in a group class right for them. If you have concerns that your dog will be distracted or excited in a group environment don't let that discourage you. As long as your dog is not aggressive towards other dogs or people, or has behavior concerns that require private training, you are welcome to attend group classes.
Following a Natural Training Structure
Cross training is very important in dog training. Even if I am training for obedience or rally-o trials I will mix up my training plan with tricks, freestyle, and more. Dogs are great learners and it is important to provide them with variety. At MJ's we offer dog training and care classes that allow you to mix and match and attend as many classes as you'd like rather than being restricted to a set week-to-week course. I wanted to design classes that follow the way I train dogs (with lots of variety), rather than using a cookie-cutter structure.
All of our classes are small and personal, so you will never fall behind with training. We offer puppy classes, classes in grooming, dog manners, scent games and more. New students start with either an evaluation or orientation, and returning students can join classes anytime.