If you are reading this post, I suppose you have already looked into the costs of hiring a personal trainer for your dog or enrolling them in a dog school. A personal dog trainer or a school can set you back with a few thousand dollars but it is worth understanding their advantages and disadvantages.
The main advantages of hiring a dog trainer include:
1. They can confidently address behavior issues like growling, nipping, door bolting, guarding objects, and reactivity/aggression.
2. A dog trainer can help build agility, desired behaviors and bring out the full potential of your paw partner.
3. They can make sure the undesired behaviors are eliminated at an early age.
I would like to point out a few disadvantages as well so you have a better picture. A personal trainer can be hard to come by; their schedule might not match with yours very well; you might feel uneasy about the experience they have and the methods they use. A personal dog trainer can be very pricey.
On the other hand, enrolling your dog in a school has a few key advantages:
1. The school’s trainers are likely to have expertise with a wide range of breeds which is invaluable.
2. You can leave your dog at a facility that is equipped with everything necessary to accommodate your dog and you can be assured your dog is in a safe environment.
3. Dogs are known to follow the example of other dogs and your dog may progress quickly through a class.
Unfortunately, some dogs have focus difficulties at school and may not receive the personal attention they need. Dog schools can be crowded and may not be properly equipped sometimes. Some schools use negative reinforcement methods that are not preferred by many.
People who have a generally well-behaved and socialized dog that happens to pull on the leash from time to time and occasionally destroy their slippers might want to consider training their dog personally. It will be cheaper, safer, and you will build your bond with your dog. You should be familiar with your dog’s quirks already. The training at home has not been easier with people sharing their skills, information, and practical knowledge across the Internet. Many motivated and confident people have trained their dogs through YouTube tutorials and mobile apps.
As the title of this post shows, I will be focusing on the latter, you may want to check what channels like Beckman's Dog Training and Zak George’s Dog Training Revolution have in regards to dog training. You will have to adapt your schedule to fit training sessions at least twice a day and you will need to be very patient. Dogs, much like people, learn at different paces and pick up on tricks and tasks with varying degrees of success. If you need to train your dog better obedience, retrieval skills and maybe making your dog a service dog — grab your phone and check the apps mentioned below.
The applications I will cover run on the most widely used operating systems on the mobile market — Android and iOS. You can install them on your phone, tablet, and iPad. I recommend sticking to your phone for easy mobility and reading on your commute to work. These apps were selected because of their full-feature nature, good visual aid, and reputation among their users.
This one is a recently released app that is picking up quite the following due to its condensed courses compiled by professional trainers. The app comes with animated videos and lectures. Dog owners looking to improve their canine’s behavior at home and in the public space should try this app. If you are facing physical and mental challenges that interfere with your daily life and you have not considered training a service dog you should definitely check their site — Servicedogtrainingschool.org The SDTSI companion app is part of a larger platform for training good canine citizens, service dogs, and therapy dogs. It comes with a training log, a record of your walks, a clicker, a whistle, and a photo diary. The course materials are made available through a single payment and you receive a certificate when you pass their assignments. You can move through the courses as you like and make your schedule. They have a live chat on their site where you can ask for support. SDTSI is making service dog training more accessible than ever. I recommend checking their Trustpilot page if you are not sure about the app. Their iOS version can be found here and their Android version can be found here.
GoodPup: Dog Training at Home
The app is offered by Petcarenow.com and helps teach better in-door manners, basic commands, skills to avoid bad behavior and educates users on dog health. It has been praised for its support, illustrated guides, quick daily sessions, and cooperation with the American Veterinary Medical Association. The app comes with daily text check-ins from a trainer and will require you to follow a schedule. The GoodPup app comes with an auto-renewing weekly subscription and you will have to set up a credit or debit card in advance. Don’t forget to keep an eye on your balance and charges lest you are surprised with their bills. They have pretty good reviews on the Apple Store and Google Play but may not be the right fit for people with not a lot of free time available.
Pupford: Dog & Puppy Training
The Pupford dog training app is created with the cooperation of Zak George who is a respected dog trainer and operates a YouTube channel with a significant following. The app is aimed at new puppy owners and covers a wide range of behaviors, basic skills, and a few commands. The content is provided free of charge. It is meant to serve as a good basis for subsequent advanced training. The app is bundled with videos and text to guide you and your puppy. The Pupford app has been praised for its excellent videos and has good reviews. Sadly, the app does not have a lot of in the way of customization and the ability to follow the progress of several dogs at a time (as seen at the time of writing this). Another drawback pointed out by users is that the videos do not play out smoothly all the time and you lack support. It is an overall good app for new puppy owners who want to start training their puppy good manners. You can find the “Pupford: Dog & Puppy Training” app on Android and iOS.
Puppr - Dog Training & Tricks
The Puppr dog training app offers lessons by Sara Carson who is described as one of the top dog trick instructors in North America. The Puppr app includes potty training, “sit”, “fetch leash” and various tricks. The app has free lectures and support via live chat. The support is paid through a subscription called “Puppr Premium” which is auto-renewed each term. Keep in mind that refunds will not be provided for any unused portion of the term. The app allows tracking the progress of several dogs at a time and provides valuable help to owners dealing with separation anxiety. Puppr looks to be centered around the experience of Sara Carson and how it can help you train your dog better manners and tricks that can be entertaining and serve as good exercises for your dog. You can visit their official site here — puppr.app — where you can find the Android version and the iOS version easily.
Dog & Puppy Training App with Clicker by Dogo App
The Dogo App, in short, has a site here — dogo.app — and boasts personalized training programs where you can choose what you want to train your dog and which advanced skills you want. The app comes with a clicker, exams, an activity log and you can attain a certificate. The content is presented in text and video format. You can get access for 7 days for free (at the time of writing) and then enter a subscription model called “Dogo Premium”. The app has been described by its creators as a “gamified training” that might be appealing to some. You will find plenty of games for you and your canine as well as interact with other Dogo users on a tight social network. The Dogo Premium accounts benefit from personal feedback through video exams. The project is lead by a certified veterinary doctor specializing in internal and behavioral medicine with over 7 years of experience in the pet care domain. If you are seeking personalized support through video the Dogo app may be the right choice for your training at home.