While dogs are man's best friend, that relationship didn't develop overnight. Creating a strong bond with a dog takes time, patience and lots of training. Dog obedience training is one of the best ways to deepen the bond between dog and owner.
Training a new dog takes a lot of time and effort but the payoff is well worth it. Some dogs may require more training than others due to breed type, past trauma, or just plain stubbornness. However, all dogs can become loyal, friendly and well behaved through dog obedience training with Dog Training Elite West Michigan’s programs, including in-home training!
Dog Training Elite West Michigan has specialized training courses for both puppies and older dogs. For in-home training, dog trainers will observe dog breed, size, temperament and any other factors that will influence training.
Working with the dog and dog owner directly in an owner’s home, dog trainers will develop a personalized training plan for basic commands like sit, stay, come, heel, etc.; as well as to address any unique issues such as anxiety, aggression, fear and so on. Once a dog is trained, owners can sign their dogs up for group classes with more in-depth training.
Starting with in-home training is an unmatched service that provides dogs and dog owners with the opportunity to work together. Not only does in-home dog obedience training free dogs from the distractions of a group class, but ensuring a dog is learning from both their owner and a trainer will help owners and dogs strengthen their bond. Dogs that learn only from trainers may be inclined to disobey when the trainer is not around. Equally sharing the task of training between dog and dog owner leads to the development of trust and deepening love.
Trainers from Dog Training Elite West Michigan seek to not only help train dogs, but empower owners so they can continue training their dogs in years to come. This includes sharing tips and tricks (treats are always a good thing!), as well as pointing out personality traits and behavior issues dog owners should focus on.
The Dog Training Elite West Michigan Difference
There are numerous dog obedience training methods out there, which can be broken down into three main theories: traditional, modern and balanced.
- Traditional training typically relies on punishment for errors, and “low value” rewards such as praise or petting when a dog performs a desired behavior. In recent years traditional training has fallen out of favor.
- Modern training, which is more science-based, focuses more on positive reinforcement when a desired behavior occurs and doesn’t worry about correcting bad behavior. This training method has many benefits, including faster learning for dogs, less stress and anxiety for dogs, ability to teach more complex behaviors, and of course, a better experience for dog owners and trainers.
- Balanced training theory, while it sounds like the best of both worlds, still incorporates the use of punishment as a training tool.
Dog Training Elite West Michigan uses modern training methods focused on positive reinforcement and bonding between dog and dog owner. Dog Training Elite West Michigan never resorts to the use of punishment to help dogs unlearn bad behavior. The difference becomes clear when comparing a dog that is trained out of anxiety and intimidation vs a dog who truly desires to please from the inside out.
The Dog Training Elite West Michigan training theory is mostly based around classical conditioning, also known as the Pavlovian method or respondent conditioning. This includes developing conditioned or automatic reflexes to commands. In its simplest form (after proper conditioning), when an owner says "sit," their dog automatically sits without thinking about it.
Through a combination of commands and an electronic collar, dogs learn to follow commands at once. The electronic collar is not a shock collar; it is a gentle electronic pulse, similar to the tug of a leash, used to get the dog’s attention. Other dog trainers use harsh static collars or spray collars which have been shown to be less effective. Dog Training Elite West Michigan’s method of focusing on positive behavior reinforcement nurtures a dog's loving and naturally obedient nature.
Our Balanced Theory
We base our training around the "Classical Conditioning" model (a.k.a. "Pavlovian" or "respondent conditioning"). This includes developing conditioned or automatic reflexes to commands. In its simplest form (after proper conditioning), when the owner says "sit," the dog automatically sits without thinking about it. Our unique techniques ensure our program is a success no matter what behavior we encounter.
We empower owners to train so their dog knows who to obey at all times.
We deal with problem behaviors on a personal basis.
We train wherever issues tend to arise (i.e. jogging, park, home).
We support owners in the off-hours (when training is "not in session").
We work with all members of the household.
Simplified & Customized
We plan training around the owner's schedule and require only 15 min/day follow-up practice.
Additional programs / group sessions offered after in-home training.
We follow up & are invested in the owner's success long-term.
Our high client satisfaction rating sets us apart from competitors.
clas·si·cal con·di·tion·ing PSYCHOLOGY noun A learning process that occurs when two stimuli are repeatedly paired; a response that is at first elicited by the second stimulus and is eventually elicited by the first stimulus alone.
Start Your Obedience Training Journey
Dog Training Elite West Michigan knows the prospect of starting dog obedience training can sound daunting. But with our knowledge trainers and proven, gentle method, you and your pet can conquer obedience training without using any harsh shock collars or demanding training.
Dogs and dog owners can bond and work together to have a successful, enjoyable training process. Contact Dog Training Elite West Michigan today to start your dog obedience training!
Obedience Training FAQs
What age can a dog start obedience training?
The earlier, the better. Puppies are welcome! That being said, old dogs truly can learn new tricks - there is no reason an older dog can’t learn basic commands.
What issues will obedience training address?
Besides basic commands like sit, stay, heel, etc., dog obedience training can address issues such as chewing, whining or barking, jumping to greet others, and begging for food.
Are shock collars used?
No. Pain or punishment is never used in any form during training programs. A combination of positive reinforcement and an electronic collar has proven to be 100% successful. The electronic collar produces a gentle “tug” to get a dog's attention. It is not a shock collar and does not harm or alarm a pet.
Why in-home training?
In-home training is necessary because it allows trainers to focus on the particular issues of individual dogs (like terrorizing a pet cat or chasing the mailman). During in-home training sessions trainers also work side by side with owners and any other family members so the dog understands who is in control.
Proud Sponsor of The Malinois Foundation
At Dog Training Elite West Michigan, we believe that Service Dogs save lives. It is our mission to make these life-saving companions available to our Veterans, First Responders, Women Survivors, and Children with Medical Needs. Whether it be for PTSD, Mobility Support, or Special Needs, Dog Training Elite West Michigan work's with the Malinois Foundation to heal and empower these individuals with a specialized service animal, a partner in life, and a new best friend.