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  #1  
Old 08-24-2006, 01:22 PM
jls944 jls944 is offline
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Default Training options?? Petsmart any good?

My wife and I just bought our first pup (Boston terrier). I am trying to do some research before we get him so I can be better prepared when he arrives (end of September).

Both my wife and I would like to train the dog but am wondering if we should get some outside help (seeing this is our first dog). Does anyone have experience with Petsmart training? Would you recommend them or should I look somewhere else? I live 40 mins. north of Boston so any recommended dog trainers in the area would be appreciated.

Thank you.
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Old 08-24-2006, 06:17 PM
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poodlesmom poodlesmom is offline
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Congrats on your soon to arrive furpal! Bostons are delightful companions.

I have never used Petsmart training myself but I have observed some classes when I have been there shopping. From what I have seen I think for the most part they are great especially for the 1st set of puppy classes. It is very important for socialization around other dogs and to get a general idea of the basic commands.

As far the other classes I have heard both good & bad. I think it really boils down to the actual trainer who is running the class and how experienced the trainer is.

If there are any kennel clubs in your area many times they offer obedience classes. I found my 1st trainer through our vet who referred her to me. There is also an on-line site "APDT" which lists dog trainers by area. I would suggest making a few calls and set up times for you to go & observe a class to see how the trainer interacts with the people and their dogs and see if you feel comfortable with their training methods.

No matter where you decide to have classes I personally think it is important for it to be a fun experience for both you & your furpal.
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Old 08-24-2006, 06:27 PM
PoodleMommy PoodleMommy is offline
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Congrats on your new puppy.

Before you sign up I would watch the trainer for awhile first.

The trainer at our petsmart was terrible and I dropped out of the class after the 2nd session, because it was a HUGE waste of time. We did nothing but stand around.

You can probably find a better solution in your area, but if you are looking for a cheap way to socialize your dog and learn some very basic skills, it could work for you. Again, since every trainer is different... I would watch a class first.

Good Luck

Elissa
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Old 08-24-2006, 06:49 PM
WES WES is offline
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Default Dog Trainer...

Before you go to Pet smart take a look here:

The MSPCA at Nevins Farm
400 Broadway. Methuen, MA. 01844-2052
Phone (978) 687-7453
http://www.mspca.org/site/pp.asp?c=gtIUK4OSG&b=126787

40 min North of Boston should very close. Bella just completed her second OB course
(Better Manners). The teachers are quite good and the price is very reasonable. Class size is limited, there were 5 or less in my classes, one teacher and one or 2 assistants.
Good Luck.
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Old 08-24-2006, 09:28 PM
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personally i'd look somewhere other than petsmart. while it depends heavily on the quality of the trainer in the store, i've yet to meet a petsmart trainer i've been even moderately impressed with.

try doing a google search for "dog training club" and your location or call your vet and ask if they have any recommendations.
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Old 08-24-2006, 09:51 PM
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I think it would be fine for puppy socialization .... but not for handling classes. You've got a long time to check around and visit . You must be very excited !!! Do you have a good puppy book ? ( :-) for those who know me !!!
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Old 08-25-2006, 09:38 AM
jls944 jls944 is offline
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Thanks for all you input. WEP, that MSPCA is actually in the same town as me. I was that they had puppy socialization but I don't think includes training. Have you taken your dog through the puppy socialization classes? Thank you.
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Old 08-25-2006, 02:43 PM
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Lizmo Lizmo is offline
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Congrates!!!!!!!

I have been to Petsmart's Begenner and Intermediant training class they are very good but here are a few things to watch out for with Petsmart

1). The trainer has to be good and know what he/she is doing in order to have a good training class that is structured and fun at the same time.

2). The trainer will not let more than about 4 or 5 dogs in the class at one time trust me on this one no mader how good the trainer is the ring is only so big and in my beginner class there was only 3 dogs (including me my mom and Lizzie)( you had to be 16 or older to go by yourself and I was only 12 at the time) and the class was great because the trainer was able to work with each one of us. Now I had a private class for the Intermediant class but the trainer wanted Lizzie to be around other dogs also so she lets us sit in and so times demonstrate some times and it was a very good class but the only thing wrong was the it had 11 dogs and people in there at ONE time!!!! That's VERY bad!!!!!

3). The trainer is friendly and wants to help you and is willing to let you ask questions and want it to be a good experence for you and your dog!

Ask if you coudl talk to the trainer and sit in on one of the classes to see how the trainer runs the class is the trainer nice likes dog(yes I have seen trainers at petsmart that do not really help you and will not help your dog) if the thrainer is willing to answer questiond that you have.
Other than that Petsmart training is very good and a good idea for you and your new puppy!! Good Luck!!!
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Old 08-25-2006, 08:40 PM
WES WES is offline
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Default Training...

My dog was a little older when I found out about the Methuen MSPCA so she did not go to the puppy playgroup. Bella has completed basic manners (L1) and better manners (L2). I am planning to take best manners (L3) in the fall. Take a look at the MSPCA website, click on the link under
Community Canines
at Nevins Farm

It has all of the class offerings and info. Check out manners for miniís (dogs less than 30 lbs)
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Old 08-27-2006, 05:13 PM
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Petsmart trainers vary from awful to excellent. My store had an excellent trainer with 30+ years of experience, but on the whole, the job doesn't pay enough to retain someone who's good at their job. Not that beginners can't do well, but when you're paying for it, you tend to want the best, you know?

You can always ask to sit in on a training session and watch. If you like what you see, great, sign up. If not, then you know you don't want to sign up, plus it will give you an idea of what you're looking for and not looking for in a class. Ask the breeder or rescue you're getting the dog from who they would recommend, too.

The most important thing you can do is SOCIALIZE like crazy! I would recommend buying a copy of Ian Dunbar's book "Before You Get Your Puppy." Dr. Dunbar is big on early socialization, and I really agree with what he suggests on that topic.
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