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Are Dog Training Group Classes Necessary?


Your puppy or older dog has completed basic obedience training. Congratulations! You and your pet have not only developed trust and strengthened your bond, but your puppy or dog is well on their way to becoming a loyal, loving companion.

Dog Training Elite Richmond knows dog training is truly a lifelong pursuit. As your puppy or dog masters the basics, you can move onto more complicated tricks and training. Maybe you’ve progressed from “sit” to seeing how long they can hold it, or you’re working on taking your pet through an obstacle course.

It can be hard to come up with new ideas to train your dog, and after months of having structured training one-on-one with your pet it can be especially difficult to know what to do next. What will benefit both you and your dog the most?

Dog Training Elite offers dog training classes in Richmond for puppies and older dogs that may be the answer you’re looking for. While group training classes aren’t always necessary, they can be extremely beneficial to both your dog and you.

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Benefits of Group Classes

Just like humans, dogs all have their own personalities. Some may receive and respond to all the training they need from private, one-on-one instruction, while others may find great benefit from attending a group class. Group classes can be a great asset to both dogs and their owners, since it provides them with many different situations and experiences they may not otherwise have. Here are some other benefits of attending group dog training classes:

Group dog training classes have a number of benefits, particularly with socialization. Taking a puppy to group classes once they’re immunized will help them grow into a well-socialized dog comfortable with other dogs and humans. Older dogs who weren’t well socialized as puppies can learn to socialize in a small, safe environment. Trainers will recognize signs of possible conflict between dogs and help owners learn how to diffuse situations and take care of their pets, and dogs will learn how to interact appropriately with each other.

Dog training classes can also be beneficial for owners! If you bring your dog to a group class, you’ll meet other dog owners and become part of a community. Dog Training Elite Richmond likes to make group classes exciting for both dogs and their owners, so expect to learn fun training games and enjoy an environment that feels less like a class and more like a social outing. Classes meet once a week, and both you and your dog will look forward to going every week.

Besides the socialization benefits, group classes are a great tool for dogs to learn to work around distractions. If your dog is perfectly obedient at home, but loses his or her mind at the dog park and forgets all they’ve learned, group classes are the way to go. Group classes are a safe way to help your dog learn to listen to you, even when they’re surrounded by exciting sights, smells and sounds.

In a dog training class, you are in control of the training. While your pooch may occasionally be used as the ‘demo’ dog, there will be very few instances where your dog only has to listen to the trainer. With a class, you are the trainer, and the instructor is just acting as a guide. With all of Dog Training Elite Richmond’s training options - in-home or through a class - you will always be the No. 1 trainer, not just sitting on the sidelines as someone else takes charge.

Each dog is unique, and the small classes at Dog Training Elite Richmond will allow you and your dog to still receive personalized attention and training. You will also have the opportunity to learn from other dogs and their owners. Imagine the trainer advises another owner how to help their dog learn to play independently. Later, you might remember the advice and apply it to your own dog, away from the class.

*Classes are open to all dog breeds and sizes, but all dogs are required to be immunized.

Dog Training Elite Richmond is proud to have the highest rated group dog classes in Richmond.

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.


Dog Training Elite Richmond is the top company near you that uses professional positive dog training methods.
Empowering Owners

We empower owners to train so their dog knows who to obey at all times.

Personalized

We deal with problem behaviors on a personal basis.

Environment Specific

We train wherever issues tend to arise (i.e. jogging, park, home).

Supportive

We support owners in the off-hours (when training is "not in session").

Involved

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.

Continued Training

Additional programs / group sessions offered after in-home training.

Lifetime Investment

We follow up & are invested in the owner's success long-term.

Satisfaction Ratings

Our high client satisfaction rating sets us apart from competitors.

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The Dog Training Elite Richmond Difference


Regardless of whether it’s an in-home training session or a group class, the Dog Training Elite Richmond training method is the same. Dog Training Elite Richmond focuses on positive reinforcement, also called “Classical Conditioning” or the “Pavlovian” method. Research has shown positive reinforcement to be more effective with longer lasting results than other training methods.

Dog Training Elite Richmond does not use punishments or shock collars and instead pairs positive reinforcement training with an electronic collar for superior results. An electronic collar is not a shock collar and does not harm the dog. It is a gentle electronic pulse, similar to the tug of a leash, used to get the dog’s attention. It is never used as a punishment for bad behavior.

Other dog trainers use harsh static collars or spray collars which have been shown to be less effective. 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. Dog Training Elite Richmond’s method of focusing on positive behavior reinforcement nurtures a dog’s loving and naturally obedient nature.

Signs Your Dog is Ready for Training

Every dog can benefit from training, and it can sometimes be a lifelong pursuit. If you’re wondering if training is right for you, here are some signs your dog is ready for training:


Whether it’s chewing on furniture or shoes, going to the bathroom in your house, or anything else your dog is not supposed to do -- it’s time to get them trained out of these sorts of behaviors. Even older dogs who were previously well-behaved may develop bad habits later in life and need a training refresher.

Aggression can manifest itself in multiple ways; perhaps your dog growls or snaps at you when you get close to his or her food, or toys. Even more concerning is when your dog is aggressive towards other dogs or humans. Yes, sometimes dogs play in a way that seems aggressive, but if your dog is lunging at or snapping at people or other dogs while you’re on walks, it’s time to get a trainer’s help.

Walking nicely on a leash does not come naturally to most dogs but it is something that can be learned. Again, even older dogs who previously walked well on a leash may start to act out.

If your dog is dealing with severe separation anxiety, or is fearful in new environments, a trainer can help. For separation anxiety a trainer will work with you and your dog on a routine to reassure your dog. General training, especially in group classes, can help dogs build confidence.

Or on walks, or whenever you’re outside. If your dog is obedient when they’re in your home, but loses their mind outside, he or she would benefit from more training. Group classes can be especially helpful because they put your dog in a safe environment with the kinds of distractions you experience outside. Training your dog in situations where there are other distractions helps them learn to obey even when there are other stimulating sights and sounds.

Dog Training Elite Richmond provides professional and personalized dog training programs in Richmond.

Join a Group Class Today!


Don’t wait! Find your nearest Dog Training Elite Richmond location to find a group class schedule and join a group dog training class today. Start building a community for you and your dog, and continue to strengthen your bond with your furry best friend.

Find a trainer near you today!

We help your dog become a valued companion and beloved member of the family. Read what our customers have to say and then give us a call!

We are so happy with this group! They were very professional and tailored their training to our dog's personality and needs. Our dog has learned so much and most importantly, how to relax! She is a happier dog because of it. Thank you.
— Mareena Clotfelter
Posted December 6th 2022
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Fantastic program! Very systematic, sensible and clear. My dog and I found it easy to commit to the 15-20 minutes of practice a day and the results are life changing! THANKS Paul!
— Carol Straus
Posted November 29th 2022
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Paul is absolutely wonderful! Empowering me as the owner to be an important part of the process. My family and I are very happy with the results! Thank you Paul And DTE!
— joesph williams
Posted November 17th 2022
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I'm so grateful for Paul and DTE. The progress my dog has done in these last couple of months has been amazing. I'm looking forward to my dog's service dog training after completing her obedience training. She's been great to me so far and has helped me through tough times, but I know Paul with DTE can make sure she's doing the best she can and help me better than she is now.
— Natalia Segarra
Posted November 9th 2022
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I definitely recommend Dog Training Elite! Paul is very friendly, patient and informative. He sets you and your pup up for success with hands-on instruction as well as giving you a better understanding of how dogs think. I'm looking forward to seeing my pup's progress continue!
— Christina Marie
Posted October 25th 2022
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Paul has been great with my German Shepherd! He doesn't pull on a leash and is well behaved in public.
— Becky Carmean
Posted October 6th 2022
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Paul with DTE was absolutely wonderful to work with! We all feel lucky to have found him and incredibly pleased with our investment in our fur babies. You most certainly CAN teach an old dog new tricks! Patience and consistency are virtues you will need through this endeavor, but the satisfaction and pride you'll feel both for your own perseverance, as well as your pups, is so worth all of the time and hard work!! We're looking forward to group sessions and are excited to see what new adventures we'll enjoy as a family. Buster, Mae, and Goose fell "in love" and "in line" when Paul entered our home and we'll be forever grateful for his knowledge and expertise. Many people are quick to judge when discussing e-collars but we truly feel that if they took the time to go through even one training session with Paul, their perception WILL be shifted, especially after witnessing the power of redirection and repetition first hand. Dogs love structure and they love pleasing their humans, so if you're in need of some excellent training with the option to gain a lifetime friend, give Paul with DTE a call! ~M&M
— Megan O'Leary
Posted July 9th 2022
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We were at the end of our rope with our dog and were extremely frustrated with his misbehavior. Dog Training Elite changed our life and our relationship with our dog. Thank you for helping us save our dog!!!
— Christie Pitsinger
Posted June 24th 2022
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I highly recommend Dog Training Elite! From their training methods to the care and respect they show towards the dogs and owners, you can’t go wrong!
— Cassie Frank
Posted June 16th 2022
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I had just about lost hope for my overly excited but super loving pup. We had tried other training methods to no avail, but meeting Paul Hearn was a game changer! In just six weeks she went from excessive barking, bolting out doors, jumping, etc to super chill and well behaved. We appreciate you so much, Paul!
— Jen Ferguson
Posted June 13th 2022
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We got Paul to help us with our two year old lab so she would come and stay when we needed. He helped teach her a new command every visit so she could understand and we could understand what to do so she would be better behaved.
— Jon Dossie
Posted June 12th 2022
google
Paul will undoubtedly take amazing care of your dog. Don’t hesitate to call him if you are in need. He’s a great guy and a great trainer!
— Nadia Summo
Posted June 3rd 2022
google
I 100% recommend Dog training elite Richmond Paul has done wonders with my once rowdy German shepherd tremendous results in just a little bit of time! I really look forward to continue to use them for dog training! If you are looking for a dog trainer look no further!💗
— Shelby Taylor
Posted May 25th 2022
google
Paul is a great guy! He is professional, punctual and committed to delivering results. Paul is very family forward with excellent customer service skills. He is passionate about giving back to the community and driving quality results. Highly recommend if you are looking to improve your relationship with your furry friend!
— Kyle Christie
Posted May 12th 2022
google
Paul and Elite training has been a great help with my two year old westie. Being able to work in my own home on a one to one basis is a real plus. His explanations are easily understood by the dog and owner!
— Robert Fischer
Posted May 10th 2022
google
Good training starts with understanding how dogs think and how to integrate their needs into a schedule. Consistency is key. We appreciated having help in our own home to make sure we got off on the right foot with our puppy. Service was professional and friendly!
— Fronkie L'Heureux
Posted May 9th 2022
google
I’ve known Paul for 15+ years and know him to be an outstanding and honest person. I’m so happy for his new career. He’ll be great!
— Jacquelyn Canaday
Posted April 5th 2022
google
Paul is absolutely amazing. Very professional, answered our questions, reasonably priced. Highly recommend.
— Kathleen Dooley-Wolfe
Posted March 31st 2022
google

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Proud Sponsor of The Malinois Foundation

At Dog Training Elite Richmond, 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 Richmond 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.

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Proud local partner with Chesterfield Gives Back Charity

Chesterfield Gives Back was established to provide a means for our community to give thanks to those who serve us, our First Responders. Dog Training Elite Richmond partners with Chesterfield Gives Back to accomplished this by taking charitable donations and funding events, such as the First Responder Appreciation Day, that are free to First Responders and their families. In addition, we facilitate many other means of recognition and thanks for those who serve our community and those in need."

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Dog Training Elite Richmond - AKC STar Puppy Instructor
Dog Training Elite Richmond - Canine Good Citizen Evaluator
Dog Training Elite Richmond - AKC Community Canine
Dog Training Elite Richmond - PRTA Pro
Dog Training Elite Richmond - IACP Member
Dog Training Elite Richmond - AKC Member