We take the fostering of the connection between humans and their canine family members seriously.
Training is bond-building and relationship-cementing. A well-mannered dog is able to enjoy a fuller, richer, more experiential life. Training provides a foundation for communication and provides the human family with a way to connect with their dog to maximize their relationship potential.
Each dog breed has a purpose (i.e. hunting, herding, working, guarding, companionship). Those functions “breed” certain personality traits. Dogs have different learning styles based on their genetic and environmental makeup; for instance, sporting dogs have a different learning style than terriers, and the toy breeds are different from hounds, and so on. Your dog’s behavior is driven by approximately 35 percent genetic (innate) influence and 65 percent environmental (learned) factors. Our trainers use proven relationship-building and positive-reinforcement techniques (environmental) in combination with our knowledge of the behavioral nuances of each breed and mix (genetic) to set your dog up for success.
Our classes offer something for everyone: Socialization Training for puppies; Manners, Performance Sport Skills, and Trick Training for adolescent and older dogs; and FUN for YOU!
Classes are held at our WAGD locations in Malvern or Villanova or, if you prefer, in your own home. (Yes, we make house calls!)
If you prefer to keep it private, our behavioral experts will assess your dog’s needs, abilities, and challenges and form a customized game plan for one-on-one or small-group training.
Sometimes dog behavior can be challenging to understand. We’re here to help! Using the proven principals of operant conditioning, our breed-based knowledge, and Mary Remer’s uncanny communication instincts and experience, we can correct even the most frustrating behaviors and teach you how to resolve issues before they become problems. At the core of all WAGD learning is providing a foundation for communication, developing mutual respect, and supporting the opportunity for the human family to understand their dogs’ needs, thereby connecting in a way that maximizes the relationship potential. At What A Good Dog, we believe our results speak for themselves.
Dogs are social animals by nature, so it's important to give puppies opportunities to learn and play with others. Puppy Kindergarten emphasizes proper socialization and gives young dogs the foundation of trust they need to move on to more advanced classes. Socialization lessons teach your dog how to interact with people and other animals. (Ages 3 to 6 months; no previous training necessary.)
Good manners are about more than just getting a pet to do what we want; the right training can keep your dog safe, and makes for more harmonious relationships. We teach dogs and families all the skills they need to build better relationships and ensure a safe and happy home.
Level 1: Ages 6 months and up.
Level 2: Ages 8 months and up. Prerequisite: Manners Level 1.
Level 3: Ages 10 months and up. Prerequisite: Manners Level 1 & 2.
Canine Good Citizenship (CGC) Testing:
Getting your CGC is the first step towards advanced training and exciting activities like Rally, Agility and Obedience. We test dogs for the CGC as part of our Manners classes (see above), but can arrange to test any dog in a private session. To learn more about the requirements for the CGC, visit the AKC website. (All ages.)
Rally is a fun, fast-growing sport in which canine/handler team teams navigate a course at their own pace and compete for points. The competition levels are Novice, Advanced and Excellent. It's a great first step towards Agility Obedience competition. Visit the AKC website for more information about Rally. (Ages one year and up. Prerequisite: Manners Level 1 and CGC.)
Agility is an exciting sport for dogs and handlers in which off-leash dogs are directed through fun obstacle courses while handlers use body language and verbal cues to guide the dog. We start dogs off in a safe environment and gradually work up to more challenging moves. Puppy Foundation classes for agility are available. Learn more about agility at the AKC website. (Ages one year and up; Manners Level 1 and CGC required.)
Obedience training builds a strong bond between you and your dog and prepares the two of you to compete in Obedience Trials, competitions where dogs show their knowledge and training of commands. Learn more about Obedience Training at the AKC website. (Ages one year and up; Manners Level 1 and CGC required.)