As her young dog barked and lunged on leash, an exasperated student explained that her dog excelled while in puppy kindergarten, but seemed to forget everything she had learned since. Another student and dog from the same puppy class stood quietly nearby. Though this dog barely passed kindergarten, the owner continued classes and now proudly owns a mannerly adolescent.
Subsequent instruction after puppy kindergarten proves crucial. A qualified instructor points out things you unconsciously do wrong, such as repeating commands, giving commands without assuring your dog complies, or allowing your dog to self-reward by letting her pull you to greet someone.
An instructor also helps “read” canine signals that indicate a developing problem as adolescence approaches and shows you how to maintain the kind but firm leadership that avoids aggression, pack rank, or other issues. A training environment further provides your dog with ongoing socialization and offers fun times you can both enjoy. Once your dog becomes a mannerly adult, a yearly refresher course should keep you both up to par.