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  #11  
Old 08-27-2006, 05:43 PM
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I completly agree with rhinecat about the Petsmart trainers and that book would be really good and you must SOCIALIZE like crazy!!!!
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  #12  
Old 09-16-2006, 12:39 AM
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Hi Pet Smart is okay and that is all I will say about the training. I will say this I have watched many of their classes and was quit disapointed. But as a recognised dog trainer I will not critise them. I will not recommend them but I will not discredit them either
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  #13  
Old 09-16-2006, 04:22 AM
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I have not been impressed with the Petsmart trainers I have seen. However, these trainers have BIG classes to deal with and are quite overworked. I can't say I would be at my best if I did 2-3 classes per day and had that many owners (the puppies are not the problem, ever) to straighten out!

I am not fond of petsmart for handling/training classes, but it seems fine for socialization. Honestly though, why not just go with a reputable trainer who has smaller classes and more time to spend with everyone?
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  #14  
Old 09-16-2006, 05:15 AM
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Hi ... I agree with your comment RD about going to an established, reputable trainer. Petsmart's a wonderful place to socialize a puppy, but most Petsmarts are not a place to do continued training at, past the kindergarden puppy classes. Small spaces, dogs too close together, slick floors and they do not require employee/trainers to have an extensive training background. They certify trainers themselves, in a short period of time, some still refering to their manual at the Petsmart in my area, while teaching. The stores very lucky when they have an established trainer apply and even then, I find they don't keep them long due to wages. The store can only pay about 1/3rd of what most of us trainers make in our own programs. I love the Petsmart in my area though to pick up fun toys, treats, get some snuggles from new puppies on their first visit to a store, watch the daycare pups and kindergarden class, on occassion. The puppies do seem to be having a good time. I'm old school though... for most of us it took years of apprentiseships, continueing ed, behavioral study, training and competing with our own dogs sucessfully, before being qualified to teach others. Petsmarts program does not require that.
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  #15  
Old 09-19-2006, 12:15 AM
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Never mind! I rethought what I had posted.

Sorry about that.

Some PetSmart trainers are pretty darn great, if I do say so myself. Others...well...many shouldn't be allowed to handle a hamster, let alone a dog.

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Last edited by Alex; 09-19-2006 at 12:28 AM.
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  #16  
Old 09-21-2006, 03:40 PM
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Hi Alex... you're a PetSmart trainer aren't you!? lol . I absolutely apologize for making a blanket statement about "reputable" trainers. I do not like the space the trainers train out of at the very large, very busy Petsmart in my area. It is a cordened off area in the store. No bigger than 20 x 20, with folding chairs for owners, all side by side. Slick tile floors. Students having to walk the isles amongst shoppers dogs, to do heelwork. This is not a large enough space to safely train all breeds/all ages in. The trainers at this particular store, several being students in college, several hired because they showed their own personal dogs in 4-H, then took the Petsmart trainers course. While I feel that 4-H educates kids extensively on healthcare, maintenance and proper handling of their dogs, as young adults, they rarely have extensive hands on experience with all breeds, dealing with serious behavioral issues , ect. That is not to say that the PetSmart in your area is the same. Again, if you're a trainer for this chain of stores, I apologize and would like to hear from you directly what you think about their training program. Have a good day!
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  #17  
Old 09-21-2006, 03:51 PM
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I don't have experience with the training, and in fact thinking of enrolling Sadie in beginners training classes.

I just wanted to congratulate you and your wife on the coming puppy.
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  #18  
Old 09-21-2006, 05:24 PM
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I am actually an area trainer for PetSmart. I am responsible for running all of the new hires through the training program. It is far too short, and no where near involved enough, but it is what the company requires of me. I started training at PetSmart as a means to the end, and have stayed because I love what I do. I still plan on opening my own full service facility, but I want to be able to do it all (training, boarding, daycare, and grooming) and PetSmart is a great place to build up a great client base.

Now, not all trainers are created equal. I have seen many PetSmart trainers that have no place owning a dog, let alone training them, but I am proud to say that I do not have any of those in my district. I have been with the company for quite a few years now, and train privately on my own as well. PetSmart is actually a pretty good place for group classes, if you have the appropriate space, because of all of the distractions the store can provide. If you know how to handle your store, you can limit the distractions that come until you're ready for them. If a dog can heel off lead through a pet store, with loads of people, many other dogs, cats, hamsters, parakeets, screaming children, and thousands of very nice smelling (if you're a dog) items, then they can heel anywhere. It is also an amazing socialization opportunity if you're careful. Of course there will always be the amazingly intelligent people *sarcasm* that bring in aggressive dogs and allow them to terrorize half of the people in the building, but I have developed ways to handle them. I only wish other trainers for the company have done the same.

IMO it shouldn't matter where you train, but how you train. That is what should define if you are good at your job or not. I could pass on thousands of success stories from inside my PetSmart,and in turn, could pass on quite a few failures as well.

PetSmart as a whole could do a better job training our trainers to be actual dog trainers. But, I can not change that. You can. They don't listen to one Area Trainer. They listen to their customers. They listen to numbers. They are a corporation...they listen to dollars.

You want PetSmart to change, do something about it.
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  #19  
Old 09-21-2006, 05:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lizmo View Post
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!!!!!
One quick note...PetSmart REQUIRES that each class have a minimum of 5 dogs in it...the max is 10. They can get in serious hot water for not meeting their class quota.

You should be hard pressed to find a good PetSmart trainer with fewer than 6-8 dogs in their classes. My training area is 16 x 28 and I can comfortably seat 12 small dogs and 8-10 large dogs and their families. I give every client ample time to practice, as well as plenty of one on one time with me before and after classes, as well as pretty much any time they need help.

More dogs in a puppy class equal more socialization.
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  #20  
Old 09-21-2006, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex View Post
One quick note...PetSmart REQUIRES that each class have a minimum of 5 dogs in it...the max is 10. They can get in serious hot water for not meeting their class quota.

You should be hard pressed to find a good PetSmart trainer with fewer than 6-8 dogs in their classes. My training area is 16 x 28 and I can comfortably seat 12 small dogs and 8-10 large dogs and their families. I give every client ample time to practice, as well as plenty of one on one time with me before and after classes, as well as pretty much any time they need help.

More dogs in a puppy class equal more socialization.
Well this class did not have that many sign up but everybody wanted to do it and so she went and did it and really I am glad!!!! Aslo these we dogs that were about 6 months to one years old!!

Well I think our training ring is smaller and is was not very good to have that many dogs in there and it made Lizzie VERY uncomfortable in this class and me and my mom!!!!

ANd my trainer is VERY good and that is why I think she did it with only that many!!!

Also In the class that had 12 dogs these WERE NOT small dogs. They had this HUGE LAB , Smooth Collie (that did not like Lizie and when every we get out to show how Leave It was done and they had some puppy crack in the middle of the ring and I told Lizzie to Leave it and to walk aroung it and she did but the other dog was barking like mad at Lizzie and it was very hard for her), And Lizzie!!! And lots of other small dogs!!!
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