ams036 wrote:Red wrote:KittyNyanNyan wrote:II have not had one dog ever get injured. I had a class full of five very reactive dogs, and by the end of it, all were able to Loose Leash Walk in a line and sit.
The fact that someone think it is a good idea to have 5 "very reactive" dogs into the small training area Petsmart uses, on top of dogs all over the place, is exactly what my point is. That is in no way an acceptable environment for "very reactive" dogs.
My dog would be an anxious mess if she were in that small area with 4 other dogs just like her. I would have to wonder just how reactive those dogs were that none of them got hurt, and with such little time (once a week for 6 weeks) they all stopped reacting. I would not feel comfortable with a trainer that asked me to bring my extremely reactive dog to PetSmart at all, let alone to a group class at all.
I have no problem referring someone to a behaviorist if I feel as though the dog needed it. It is always something I suggest if I feel as though the situation is too intense for me to handle. With this certain case, the dog's all did really well and every owner was very pleased with the result. If a PetSmart class is done correctly, we are rarely ever in the room, if at all. I start all dogs under threshold, and then slowly build up to where a dog can be near another without reacting or moving into an automatic sit and "watch me".
Keep in mind, my store is a VERY low volume store. We don't have dogs everywhere, and it gives me the ability to work on dogs without having too many strange dogs out and about. Although there are still some, I help the owner be able to work with their dog successfully. PetSmart classes are not for everyone, and not everyone may be comfortable with it, I'm just speaking from my experience. Unfortunately, many people are not willing to throw down the money it takes to go to a licensed professional but are willing to throw down the 109 for a basic obedience class. Maybe it's not ideal circumstances, but I'd rather do my best with the dog than have them to go Man's Best Friend or Sit Means Sit. I do my best with what I am able to do.