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gpm88 February 4th, 2010 01:57 AM

Petsmart Training?
Has anyone ever taken their dog to be trained at Petsmart? If so how was your experience?

Just looking for some feedback.

Melinda February 4th, 2010 05:44 AM

my advice to you is to find a real trainer, petsmart employee's as a rule usually go by a book they are given to read, they are store clerks that have "moved" up in the ranks and now allowed to train, they discriminate against any bully breed also. If I'm wrong, people on this board will correct me, but that is the information I was given, they take a short course through petsmart and presto...they're a trainer

gpm88 February 4th, 2010 06:05 AM

:sorry: I guess I didn't give all the details. I am not actually looking to have my dogs trained. I just wanted to know what people thought. I have heard bad things, along with good things. Actually mostly good...

Melinda February 4th, 2010 06:48 AM

well I'll let you know if I hear anything good, as of yet I haven't

Marty11 February 4th, 2010 08:48 AM

Have not heard anything good!

shibamom February 4th, 2010 06:39 PM

We used Petsmart's beginner class (Simba was 4 months).

The "trainer" was about 18 years old and was reading from a manual the entire time. As we did the training around the store (heel, stop, lay down, sit), people selling certain brands of food would always approach with little kibbles of their food to use. They'd go on and on about why you should buy their kibbles, in the middle of a training class.

While I was happy with the actual puppy group (4:1 for $136/2-3 months training), that money could have been spent towards an actual trainer.

mona_b February 4th, 2010 06:44 PM

Haven't heard anything good either.

Jim Hall February 4th, 2010 08:02 PM

well yeah u can read the manual too... sounds prettty inexpensive though and for first time owners is a good thing . You notice how much "dog" training " is raelly pepole training?

Stinkycat February 4th, 2010 08:38 PM

I would never use them just cause they always try to push me to "join" their puppy classes everytime I walk in the store even after I've told them I will be training my puppy.

They're all about the sales.

Jim Hall February 4th, 2010 09:06 PM

They're all about the sales.

wel ll yeah but they are a store

Stinkycat February 5th, 2010 01:46 PM

But just because they're a store doesn't mean that training your dog has to be about buying cheap food and over priced toys.

gpm88 February 10th, 2010 03:48 AM

Thanks a lot everyone! I have just been wondering about their training. I've heard some people swear by it, but I've seen some people hate it. I've also seen really good trainers along with really bad trainers that worked there. I just wish that they would make their trainers go through a longer certification program and be a little more picky about their trainers. BUT I guess how Petsmart gets away with it is because their training is "garunteed" so you can switch trainers and/or get your money back if you are not happy with it.

Sylvie February 10th, 2010 02:09 PM

I've never had any petsmart trainging, however a girl at work took her Bouvier there and was happy with the outcome.

Same as any training, some people are great and others not so great. It depends what you expect to get out of the training that should help you make the decision.

mummummum February 10th, 2010 03:01 PM

I took my grrrrls there for puppy classes as it was the only place close by with parking. It was helpful for the socialization aspect. :eek: I actually can't remember if there was any training at all.

cassiek February 11th, 2010 03:32 PM

I have never taken any obedience classes at PetSmart, but most people I have talked to that have, have not been satisfied with the main complaint being that there was limited actual training and the trainer seemed very inexperienced. :shrug:

Personally, for myself, I have always taken my dogs to classes where I have talked to other pet owners who have had great experiences. True, they usually are more expensive... the last 2 I took Brynn to were $200 a pop for a 8 week session (still cheap in my mind considering what we learned). And I would pay it all over again, and recommend it to any pet owners in the area. The trainer was very knowledgeable and kept classes small (4-6 owners/dogs) so she could help each team individually and address any specific concerns. :D She also was available to call [I][B]after[/B][/I] the classes for any concerns or questions we had that arose after the fact.

Longblades February 15th, 2010 03:20 PM

From what I've heard it really depends on which store you go to and who you happen to get as your trainer. Unfortunately if you are a neophyte at training yourself it's hard to judge even if you go and have a talk with them.

I observed two young girls (young teenagers who were identified as PetSmart trainers) attempting to teach a recall in a young dog some poor trusting soul had left with them. The dog didn't understand, seemed to be bored stiff and in the 15 minutes I was in the store the two girls just kept trying the same thing over and over. It didn't work, it was dreadful, and I resolved never to darken their door with my training needs.

But my friend went with her GR, got a different trainer, loved her and did well with her. It did disturb me that this trainer told her clickers were reserved for advanced training and would not be introduced till class number three. Each class being a session of 6 nights so that was not till night #13. That's ridiculous as any clicker trainer knows. My trainer started clickers right away. I view the PetSmart clicker policy of this particular trainer to be nothing more than an attempt to drag out the training and keep the money coming in.

haipanda February 24th, 2010 10:31 AM

I guess it depends on the Petsmart.

I have my puppy there- we're in the Beginner Class and the trainer has been really helpful. This *is* my first puppy, so I guess it depends on your own level of expertise. If you've had dogs before, the training class probably isn't for you. But since I haven't, it's working really well for me- I needed some guidance.

It's all about positive reinforcement and we've used the clicker since day one. We also talked a bit about nutrition, which was super helpful for me.

Oh, and when I adopted her, I got a coupon for training- so it worked out to being $10/class for 8 weeks. Not bad, imo.

Dog Dancer February 24th, 2010 10:47 AM

Haipanda, I'm glad you are having a good experience with your training class. I think no matter if you learn any training at all the socialization for a puppy would be beneficial. Personally I don't think their staff are well trained and would not use them for "Training". I did adopt one of my dogs from a Petsmart store many years ago, but chose not to train with them.

My largest concern over your post would be a concern of the nutrition information they are giving you. If they are trying to sell you a product that they carry in their store I'd be cautious and make sure to do my homework thoroughly in searching out the info. They sell a lot of garbage dog food at Petsmart, and I'm certain that one of their objectives is to get you to buy it. I think if you search this website's food threads you'll learn a lot more valuable information on nutrition that you will from Petsmart. Just my :2cents:.

But please, don't take this wrong, good on you for doing what you are doing. Any and all training is beneficial.

haipanda February 24th, 2010 11:53 AM

Thanks for telling me your concerns! I feel like I am way too trusting when it comes from someone who knows more than I do. We'll be changing dog food again, sounds like. I'll post my concerns in the Dog and Cat Food Forum.

I feel like a terrible dog owner!! Sigh.

Dog Dancer February 24th, 2010 12:58 PM

Please don't feel badly, maybe they gave you a good recommendation!! I don't know what you are feeding (this is off topic to this thread so do go to the food forum for more info). I just wanted to remind you that not all pet store people are really knowledgeable and they are out to make a sale on whatever will make them the most money (sometimes...) Stick with this forum and people will guide you along your wonderful doggy owning path.:thumbs up

htsource February 24th, 2010 08:08 PM

We went for the puppy training to PetSmart, first time for training class so wasn't sure what to expect. We thought the trainer was good, except she was a little bit too nice to us, she could be a little bit hard on us so we know we won't do certain things again. Yes, I mean us people, not the dogs :)

Overall, we had a good class and the dogs were well behaved.

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