Author Topic: Training dilemma x 2 - need your advice  (Read 2387 times)

Offline Ursa

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Training dilemma x 2 - need your advice
« on: December 20, 2008, 02:13:10 pm »
We're ready to sign Fargo and Sadie up for their first training class which will start at the end of the month.  I've trained the basics at home so they'll be starting in an intermediate class.  Ursa will be halfway through a different intermediate class which will give us plenty of refreshers on the the things she's learning.

Two questions/issues/concerns have cropped up though.  Number one - when Ursa started the beginner class she was a total goober.  It took a few classes until she associated the training ring with working and settled down.  Now she's usually good as gold in the ring because she knows that means it's time to work.  Fargo and Sadie have never been to class though.  Will they be at a disadvantage?  They know all of the commands from the beginner level and a lot of intermediate work is done outside the ring but still - I want them to be successful.

Number two - we were talking with our trainer today about who would be in the upcoming class and she mentioned that there's only one other student.  No problem there until she mentioned that the other student is in a motorized wheelchair.  Neither of us has an issue with that - I applaud her for getting out there and going for it!  Fargo, on the other hand, is a bit nervous around things that move and sound like a motorized chair.  So I'm torn.  I'd like to take him to this class and use the opportunity to acclimate him to new people and things but at the same time I don't want him to be so nervous that he doesn't learn anything. 

What would you do?  Sign him up for the class and hope that the trainer can come up with some strategies to help him get past his nerves (without making the other owner in our group feel like the class project)?  Or wait until the next class which doesn't start until mid Feb?  I don't want to switch trainers as this one is excellent with the giant breed dogs.
Ruthanna - the Triplets' mom

Ursa, CGC -  11 month old Great Pyrenees
Fargo, CGC - 9 month old Newfoundland
Sadie, CGC - 8 month old Newfoundland

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Offline kathryn

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Re: Training dilemma x 2 - need your advice
« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2008, 02:57:14 pm »
I would talk to the trainer and have them talk to the other student.  As long as everyone was okay with trying to work Fargo through with the desensitizatio n of the motorized chair then it shouldn't be a problem.  If they think it will be a problem then perhaps he can go and sit outside the ring and watch from a safe distance with your SO and still get desense work just not obedience work done. 

I think they will do fine in the class especially with one other student in it.  If they are used to training in the house with the other pups around then they already have some degree of distraction work done.  It might take them a few times to get adjusted to the new place and learning.  Good luck and let us know how it goes. 
Kaila - Belgian Malinois
Shiner - Malinois x Ridgeback
Toulouse, Cayenne, Raven - DSH



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Offline Ursa

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Re: Training dilemma x 2 - need your advice
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2008, 01:43:49 pm »
Thanks everyone for the advice.  We took the Newfs in to be evaluated by our trainer this afternoon and she pronounced everyone ready for intermediate! 

I asked her to speak to the other class member and make sure that she would be comfortable helping to desensitize Fargo.  Thanks everyone for pointing out that this could be good practice for both Fargo and the other owner - I hadn't thought of that!  She said she'd call and make sure that we're good to go for next weekend.

If things don't go well she's more than willing to let us repeat any or all of the class sessions for free during the next session.  If we run into any problems because the dogs did their basic training at home we're also welcome to sit in on any beginner classes we need to as a refresher - no charge there either.  I love my trainer!
Ruthanna - the Triplets' mom

Ursa, CGC -  11 month old Great Pyrenees
Fargo, CGC - 9 month old Newfoundland
Sadie, CGC - 8 month old Newfoundland

What Now!? - www.muttdog.us