Dog Training in Mechanicsburg, PA
Dog training is not always easy. Even if you read books or watch online videos about dog training, you may find that those techniques don’t work with your pet. Or maybe there’s still one specific behavior that persists despite your efforts at training - for example, frequent barking with no apparent cause, having accidents indoors, jumping on people, refusing to come when called, etc. Either way, you might need some help learning about the root causes of your dog’s actions and how to address them. Fortunately, Greenlin Pet Resorts’ dog training programs in Mechanicsburg are here to help.
What Kind of Obedience Training for Dogs is Available at Greenlin West in Mechanicsburg?
We offer several options for pet owners, depending on your needs, your dog’s age, temperament, and any challenges they have. Generally, we like to start by meeting you and your dog for a free training evaluation, in which we learn about your goals and recommend a program that will address your requirements. For now, here is a brief overview of our most popular programs:
Basic Dog Obedience Training
In this program, we will give you the tools to teach your dog basic commands like sitting, staying, responding when you call them, and walking on a leash beside you (not dragging you!). You’ll learn to understand your dog better and address difficulties as they occur. You have the option to start with this program and then move on to the others listed below.
Lodge and Learn
This is a great program for pet owners who also need boarding or daycare services for their furry friend. You’ll drop your dog off at our high-quality facility in Mechanicsburg, where they’ll stay in a personal dog condo with access to pools and play areas. Our pet behavior specialists will work with your dog, teaching them the basics, like following commands the first time, responding when called, walking calmly on a leash (even when distractions like other animals or people are around), and being polite if you have guests over. They will also learn to behave around fellow canines in our supervised group play area. Our trainers create a unique curriculum for each canine guest based on the dog’s personality and your stated training goals.
When you pick up your pet, we’ll provide you with tools to help reinforce their training at home and correct any problematic behavior that occurs in the future. Following these instructions will help improve your relationship with your dog and maintain good canine behavior.
The AKC STAR Puppy Program
Sponsored by the American Kennel Club (AKC), the STAR program is a good option for responsible dog owners who have already taken their puppy (up to one year old) through basic training.
The STAR acronym represents Socialization, Training, Activity, and Responsibility. After completing this course, your puppy should exhibit the following good canine citizen behaviors:
- The dog will not show aggression toward people and other puppies through at least six weeks of classes.
- Your puppy will easily accept the collar or harness you choose for them to wear.
- Depending on the puppy’s size, you can hug or hold them.
- You should be able to remove a treat or toy from the dog without issue.
Because this dog behavior training class is focused on helping you learn to work with your dog, you will attend all training classes in the STAR Puppy program with them. Both you and your dog will have homework, and you will be expected to perform the following:
- Keep up with your dog’s health, including preventive measures like vaccinations and spaying/neutering.
- You’ll take the Responsible Dog Owner’s Pledge.
- Make a plan to ensure your puppy receives appropriate exercise and play time for their breed and size each day. Exercise reduces boredom and excess energy, two issues that can lead to negative behavior in dogs.
- You and your dog will take at least six classes with an AKC-approved CGC evaluator.
- You will be expected to bring your disposal bags to class to tidy up after your dog.
- You will ensure your dog has at least one form of ID, such as a collar tag from your veterinarian.
After completing the Puppy STAR program, you and your dog will receive a frameable certificate, the AKC Puppy Handbook with helpful tips and resources, and a subscription to the AKC monthly email newsletter.
WHAT ARE SOME TIPS FOR GETTING THE MOST OUT OF DOG OBEDIENCE TRAINING?
Regular attendance at dog school is great, but to get the most out of it, you need to do your homework with your dog. This includes following recommendations from your dog trainer about correcting issues at home and practicing commands.
Often people will ask us, “Why isn’t this training working?” Or, “Why is my dog still having a problem with this behavior?” Usually, the trainer will ask how well the owner has followed instructions, and in many cases, they admit that they haven’t kept up with home training.
There are several common reasons dog owners may give for failing to keep up with homework:
- “I didn’t have time.” Yes, it’s understandable that you may be busy, but if you don’t take the time to work on your dog’s behavior now, it will probably cost you more time in the long run. For example, imagine how much time you might lose if your dog doesn’t come when called and you have to spend minutes or hours tracking them down and struggling to get them home. Investing a few hours in training now is the best solution.
- “I know I shouldn’t reward bad behavior, but giving him treats got him to be quiet and leave me alone for a few minutes.” Again, this will only cause you bigger problems long-term. Resisting the urge to solve challenges quickly will allow you to understand your dog’s behavior and address it in a healthy manner.
- “I feel bad about making her sit and stay.” Why? Sitting for a few minutes doesn’t harm your dog, and we teach these commands so you can keep your pet safe. For example, if you know your dog will sit and stay when told, you can play with them outside without worrying they’ll run into the street in front of a car. You don’t have to make them sit and stay in one place all day, but they do need to know the command for when it’s necessary to protect them.
- “I tried that thing you taught us in class once, but it didn’t work.” Sometimes this happens because every dog is a unique individual. While our techniques work well for most dogs, occasionally, we meet one who requires a different approach, and we’re happy to adjust. Also, remember that your homework includes fun games and exercises to do with your dog each day, but it also means correcting negative dog behaviors whenever you notice them - every time. With many dogs, correction requires a lot of repetition before the dog abandons the behavior for good. If you see your dog doing something you’re trying to teach them to avoid, think back on the tools you were given for correction. If these techniques don’t work after several tries, let your trainer know immediately. They will ask how the dog responded and recommend other ways to correct the behavior.
Frequently Asked Questions
- At What Age Can Your Puppy Start Dog Training Classes? Puppies as young as six weeks can learn good canine behavior. The sooner you start training them, the better. It is never too late to teach your dog better behavior. At Greenlin West in Mechanicsburg, we believe you can teach an older dog new tricks, and we will work with you and your pet at any stage of life.
- What Should You Bring to Dog Training School? Bring yourself, your dog, and a good attitude about committing to the work of helping your dog improve. We also require proof of vaccination for your pet. At your free training evaluation, we’ll get to know you and your furry friend, and our dog training specialist will advise you on any items you might want to bring to class. Most commonly, we suggest bringing a leash, your dog’s favorite treats or snacks, a toy they like, and possibly their water or food dishes.
- How Can You Learn More About Dog Training at Greenlin West? We’d love to hear from you! Please contact us by calling your preferred location in Mechanicsburg or filling out our online contact form. Our helpful pet care specialist will book you for a free training evaluation so we can learn more about your needs and recommend the best course of action.