Congratulations on adding a new member to your family! Now that you’ve gotten this little ball of happiness home, you’re probably trying to figure out when you should begin training him.
When to Start Training My Puppy
Veterinarians and trainers used to recommend not starting classes until the pup already had his vaccinations and boosters. While the thought was to keep from spreading illnesses to other dogs is a valiant one, it ended up meaning that young dogs came to classes with behavioral problems that needed to be corrected, instead of starting off on the right foot.
Now, veterinarians and trainers recommend that healthy puppies start classes as soon as 7 or 8 weeks. Inadequate socialization during the first few months of a puppy’s life can result in behavioral issues that stem well into the dog’s life. The current recommendations offer the benefits of early training, which outweigh any potential health risks as long as all of the dogs in the class have been vaccinated and are healthy.
How to find a class?
A quick Google search will probably point you in the right direction of a behavioral and socialization class for your puppy near you. Some things you should consider before signing up:
Shadow the Class
Ask the instructor if you can shadow the class before showing up. Leave your puppy at home and look for any signs of distress from the puppies in the class or their owners. You’ll also want to make sure that the dogs in the class are about the same size and age as your puppy. If there is a wide range of sizes or ages, there is more of a chance for your puppy to get hurt.
Consider the Future
As you compare classes, you’ll also want to keep in mind whether that trainer offers other classes, besides the basics. If you are interested in potentially teaching your dog more advanced behaviors, you will likely want to remain with the same trainer, if possible. It is good to note whether that is a possibility with any trainer you’re considering from the get-go.
Contact Argos Dog Trainer
If you are in the Boston area, Argos Dog Training can help with dog training in a small-class setting designed for young puppies! Check out the training courses we offer, or give us a call today to get started!