Does your four-legged friend constantly bark, cry or have separation anxiety when you leave the house or room? Does your favorite canine go crazy around new guests and can’t calm down easily? Did a bad experience with a training program lead to no avail?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, we have some good news for you: there’s a better option! If your furry friend needs a more personalized training experience that is geared towards their very own specific needs and behaviors, Fitdog offers a training program to help your dog gain a solid training foundation and improve behavioral issues.
What is an immersion training program?
Immersion training is a one-on-one program in which your dog stays overnight with a trainer. The trainer spends 24/7 focusing on your specific behavioral concerns. Sort of like language immersion but for dog training!
If you’re ready to enroll in an immersion program but aren’t sure what it all means, keep reading for an overview of what to expect. There are a few important things to know before choosing the right program for your dog.
Set realistic goals
Before starting any training program, you will have important conversations with your trainer about your dog, your life and how everything affects each other. Having a discussion with the trainer will allow you, and the trainer, to have a better understanding of what can, or cannot, be achieved during the training process.
There are many reasons people decide to put their dogs in immersion programs. Dogs are usually in these types of programs because they are struggling with difficult behavioral problems like impulse control or separation anxiety. In other cases, dogs are slower to pick up on basic commands, while others can be stubborn. Listen to the trainer’s recommendations, set realistic goals of what to expect after your dog comes home. And, most importantly, learn how to keep up with the results once the training is complete.
Tell the truth about your dog
Dogs are like our kids, and sometimes that means we feel that their behavior can be a reflection of us. While owners can facilitate certain behaviors upon their dog without knowing it, please remember: it is nothing to be ashamed of! In fact, the more that you tell your trainer, the more likely your dog’s training success.
Some things to bring up to your trainer include:
- How much daily exercise your dog gets
- How long your dog is home alone
- What types of destructive behaviors your dog demonstrates around the house
- What kind of aggressive tendencies there are towards people and other dogs
Your lifestyle and relationships matter
You may be surprised to learn your lifestyle and the people who are in your life greatly affect your dog’s behavior! Trainers will try to decode this information during the consultation, so you might as well make their job a bit easier and tell them what’s going on openly and honestly, and don’t be afraid to be upfront with your answers. We won’t judge you! Our trainers have heard it all – consider your trainer consultation somewhat of a therapy session!
Be ready to maintain the training
A major factor that we have noticed at Fitdog is that a lot of doggy issues tend to stem from the fact that dogs are underutilized. When a dog is underutilized, it translates into your dog becoming mentally and physically bored. They are wired to want to perform certain tasks, and if they do not get the chance to release that energy, they can act out.
Most of the time, our trainers will recommend increased exercise as a necessary foundation for maintaining training. This means you’ll have to put in the hours to play with your pup every day. Alternatively, you may need to pay for your dog to get needed stimulation at a doggy daycare. In addition to exercise, it is essential to follow through with every one of the trainer’s instructions. This is the only way to maintain results. And if you can, you’ll have one happy, healthy dog.
Review your budget
Immersion programs tend to be more expensive than other types of training programs. The primary reason for the cost difference is because your dog will be living with the trainer, and serious behavioral changes require constant and consistent reinforcement. The upside to this is that your dog will come home with a solid foundation for the future. Furthermore, your relationship with your dog will change exponentially for the better.
With a little added commitment from you, we believe the immersion programs are highly effective for dogs who have behavioral issues or have training difficulties. Don’t fret anymore – a happy, agreeable dog is not far away!
Enroll in a Fitdog training program
Are you seriously thinking about enrolling your dog in an immersion program? Or, if you are only looking for obedience training without the boarding, we offer day training classes and other class programs at our facility in Santa Monica. For any questions, or to schedule a consultation, please call us at (310) 828- 3647.