Is Obedience School Worth The Cost?

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When I talked to friends and co-workers about enrolling our new puppy in obedience classes, I was surprised how many people were against the idea of spending money to teach your dog basic behavioral manners. I had to explain many times that my husband and I wanted the class structure and assistance of a trainer with our new outgoing puppy.

This sparked a ton of research. Was I wasting money by buying and attending these classes? What I found was surprising: the benefits far outweigh the cost.

First, I should clarify, puppy obedience classes are not about teaching a puppy to sit and stay. Sure, you’ll learn all that, but the classes are really about socializing your puppy to people and dogs. Here are some benefits I’ve discovered.

1.  Your puppy will benefit from the socialization provided in class. Your dog will learn to stay calm around new people and dogs.

2.  At obedience school, professionals will teach you to understand your dog’s behavior better. This promotes the idea of open communication between you and your dog.

3.  You train in a different environment. Just because your puppy can “sit” in the kitchendoesn’t mean he or she understands the word. Training classes allow your puppy to learn words in many different situations.

4.  Obedience school gives your dog something to look forward to. It will stimulate his mind to figure out new tricks and commands.

5.  You can work up to more advanced levels of training with your dog. One very popular route is to obtain the AKC sponsored title of “Canine Good Citizen (CGC)”.

6.  Having regular classes will help you stay on track and do your homework. It gives you an excuse to train, something that not everyone can fit into their schedule easily.

7.  Puppy classes will make your puppy tired, both mentally and physically.

8.  Obedience classes will introduce you to other dog owners, people who can recommend a good doggie daycare or vet if needed.

9.  You will get to play with cute puppies!

There are several options for obedience school. I opted to attend classes at a local pet store. I am happy to report that our Cooper (pictured above) has passed his first level of puppy classes and starts his next set this month. Our trainer has been a great support to us, making herself available almost 24/7 for questions. We couldn’t be more pleased with her services, or our decision.

Have you enrolled your dog in obedience classes? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

Jodi G. Thomson was born and raised in Seattle. She and her husband relocated to Houston in 2010. She enjoys writing and spending time with her husband and their pets.

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