Archived Message
Obedience Training

by April Blackmon

What is all the "fuss" about obedience training? Everyone is telling me to take my little Maltese. He is already quite obedient and I am training him myself. I do as much as I can to get him used to being around other people. Others have told me that obedience training is most important to socialize dogs. Should he be obedience trained?


I found it quite helpful and fun. It also gets the dog used to being around a variety of different dog sizes. My dog took third place in the final competition. Needless to say, I am quite proud of him. I find it reassuring to know he will ALWAYS come when called, and sit in front of me. Knowing the heel position, makes it effortless to walk him in a crowded situation. I know that when I put him in a STAY, he will not move. (Comes in handy when they come in all muddy from outside, and you don't want them tracking this all over the house, they will stay until you can get their bath ready. It was fun to see other dogs, and realize how smart the maltese really are! -Patti

Taking my Maltese to puppy school was one of the best things I have done for him. While you may be doing a wonderful job getting him used to various people, obedience school will give him confidence around other dogs. Hudson, my dog, was in a class with Golden Retrievers, a German Shepard, and a Boxer and is now comfortable around almost all dogs. I live in an urban area where he comes into contact with unfamiliar dogs on a daily basis and the initial introduction at school was invaluable. Also, because a Maltese can be irresistably cute and therefore easy to spoil, school was good for me as well! I learned how to establish boundaries and communicate effectivly with Hudson. Good luck with your pup!

Our 5 month old just finished her first school, and our male will graduate next week. They have enjoyed it so much, that when they are through, I am going to take another two. I have noticed marked differences in the two that are going. They are much easier to handle; They do not go crazy when they see another dog that is not white ; the baby is even doing better on her house training. The sit, stay and come is really nice to have. The baby went through her obsticle course and I was so proud to watch her perform, and she was very proud too. It gives my dogs and me a little personal time together too, as I have many, and they need this extra attention.
-Marsha A.

I took Lucy to obedience school when she was only a few months old. I thought it would be a fun way for baby and mommy to "bond" and also a good way to let the already spoiled child know that MOM was in charge. Lucy LOVED it. We made a big deal about going--I bought her a "school collar and leash" that we used only at school and when practicing during the week. (It was pink and she was so teeny and adorable). When I got out that leash and collar she would start to wiggle and could hardly wait for me to get the door open to get to the car. She took to school like a champ, outdoing all the other pups. I, on the other hand, was a little slower--I am sure she mastered the hand signals before I did! We went every Sat. morning for 6 weeks and she learned the basics: sit, down, come, heel, stay. Very necessary in the parent/fur baby relationship. Once she knew the drill, it was easy for her to learn things only a mom wanted her to do (e.g., Lucy Wait--and she stops, sits down, and we look for cars before crossing the street). The upshot of all this is that she learned who was alpha (and trust me, she was well on the way to being the leader of the pack!). She had fun. I had fun. I never took a pet to obedience classes before Lucy. I should have.
-cathy brown

KoKo has 2 certificates and she did very well. I wanted to take Shayna, this spring but she was too young. We have to wait until the Fall and she will be 11 months when we start. I am planning on bringing them both and using the coupler leach as I always walk them together. Shayna already knows many hand and voice sign but is weak on the "down". We go through the drills and she follows KoKo's lead soon she will know what to do herself. I think it is a parents responsibility to train all their children and your friends and family will thank you for it.

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