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Training your Shiba Inu

When choosing where to train your Shiba Inu, numerous options exist. With the impact of the internet and ever-growing technology, dog owners now have the option to formally train their dog without ever leaving their home. What type of training is best for you and your dog? There are many factors to consider.

Online Dog Training
Within the category of online dog training exists many class options, ranging from free to comparable cost of a formal obedience class. Some dog owners find that watching Youtube videos to learn individual commands to teach their Shiba is sufficient, while others prefer to have contact with a trainer through Skype sessions. One of the advantages of online dog training is that you can train your stubborn Shiba on your own time, and at your own pace. You are able to pick and choose which commands are taught, and spend extra time on the commands your pup is having difficulty learning. For extremely reactive Shibas that have difficulty behaving well in the presence of other dogs, online training can be a great way to lay down a basic obedience foundation before trying to work on the dog’s reactivity. However, a distinct disadvantage of virtual dog training is that the courses lack the socialization component that a traditional class provides, which is crucial for often-aggressive Shiba Inus.

Traditional Obedience Classes
A more traditional method of training is attending a 6-week obedience class either at an accredited dog training facility or local pet store. Here, every dog is taught the same 7 – 8 commands, such as “sit,” “stay,” “down,” “up,” “on,” “heel,” “drop it,” “come,” and “leave it.” For especially stubborn Shiba Inus, a traditional obedience class can be a lifesaver, as the instructor will be able to troubleshoot problems and help foster better communication between you and your dog. Classes at a physical location are also a great way to evaluate your dog’s demeanor towards other dogs in a controlled environment. Disadvantages include having to be on a set schedule, as well as needing a reliable way to safely get your Shiba Inu to and from classes.

One-on-One with a Trainer
Working with a trainer one-on-one is typically reserved for dogs with extreme problems such as dog-on-dog aggression, dog-on-human aggression, separation anxiety, or ones with other very specific issues. Here, a dog trainer will either meet you in your home, at his or her facility, or in a nearby park. For instance, if your Shiba Inu cannot go for a walk without threatening to kill every dog he or she sees, then hiring a trainer to accompany you on your normal route to teach you effective training techniques specific to your dog’s problem may be worthwhile. One-on-one sessions are the quickest way to resolve serious issues, as they are completely individualized and the trainer will work very closely with your dog. These sessions are, however, also the most expensive, and can cost upwards of $100 per hour.

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