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For those of you who have used any online dog training programs, do any of the programs work and how long does it normally take to see results?

I'm asking because I have a two years old Beagle that is making a mess at home and digging my backyard like nobody's business. I signed her up for obedience training sessions but all it does was to make her learn basic tricks. I was going to seek my local dog behaviorist but almost all their rates were too expensive for me to afford. So I went online and came across two dog training programs that claimed they could solve my Beagle's bad habits.

Do you recommend I make a purchase or are there better solutions? The reason I'm asking because I always fall for products that never deliver results they promise and I wouldn't want to fall for these type of scams ever again.

If any of you would recommend me to give it a go, which one should I go for? I was reading two articles, one of them was an article on Brain Training For Dogs by Loving Frenchies and the other one was Doggy Dan Online Dog Trainer by Canine Journal. For those that have bought any of these programs, please share your thoughts on which one I should go for.

If I can't find any other means, I would have no choice but to seek help from the dog behaviorist because my Beagle's behavior is getting out of hand. Thank you in advance!
 

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both of those look kind of iffy to me, they say a lot without saying anything. I would go to youtube and look up kikopup, she has a lot of free videos on how to actively engage and train your dog, no double speak and she doesn't always assume you have prior knowledge.
 

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I take online dog training classes through Fenzi Dog Sports Academy. They take as long as they take - it really depends on the problem, the reason for the problem, and how much work you are able or willing to put in on your own time.

If you are looking for specific help for a specific issue, an in-person trainer will be a much better use of your limited resources than spending money for online training programs. An in-person trainer can actually see the behaviour in action, can physically inspect the environment, and will get a better overall picture of what is going on, providing specific and personalized feedback, which will be way more valuable than anything the two online programs are offering, which looks to me mainly like re-packaged basic manners classes. Which probably won't fix a dog being destructive in the house or digging in the yard.

But after going through their websites and looking at their videos:

I do not like Doggy Dan. He talks about how there are "only two styles of dog training and they're both ineffective" which is false. Not only are there definitely more than two methods of dog training, the descriptions he gives of (presumably) positive reinforcement training and punishment-based "traditional" training are over-the-top exaggerations, and no trainer worth their salt actually uses either of those methods in the way that he describes. (Actually, his description of "treat training" is exactly how it is NOT done). On top of that, both methods can be effective at changing behaviour when applied appropriately, which he claims they are not. (Note: Punishment-based training can be effective at stopping a specific behaviour, but it is not any more effective, on average, than using rewards-based training can also cause other, sometimes significant, problems). He also makes a lot of promises to cure problem behaviours quickly and easily. Elimination of problem behaviours are almost never quick.

Dog Brain Games seems a bit better. She is a CPDT-KA certified trainer (good), she denounces dominance-based methods (good), she talks about addressing the root cause of a behaviour instead of the symptoms (good). But in her example video, there is a lot of bad training happening. Her "cure" for her dog's jumping problem is still a punishment-based one. From the very beginning, she intentionally encourages his jumping by coming into the room very excited and screaming Yay!. She consistently sets him up to punish him for doing the unwanted behaviour instead of teaching the dog a behaviour to do instead. A better approach would be to toss a cookie for the dog not jumping up *as soon as the door opens* rather than waiting until you're fully into the room and screaming "YAY!". (the "Yay" also looks a heck of a lot like a trained cue to me, which raises a whole bunch more questions. Like Doggy Dan, she also makes a lot of big claims - she's been training dogs for only 10 years and yet has come up with a special system that no other dog trainer has ever used? She also advertises "quickly eliminating" problem behaviours. All of the behaviours listed in the course over-view are basics taught in just about every R+ based manners class. $47 isn't that much for decent training information and access to the other resources she mentions.

However, you can get just about all of that for free, and from better and from more experienced trainers, on Youtube. Say from trainers likeKikopup, Zak George, Simpawtico, and others.

But no matter where you go, you are going to have to actually put the time and work in if you want to change the behaviour.
 

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Do online training programs work? Depends on the program. Another good question is do you work well with online training? I second everything Snowball has said. I also am a fan of FDSA and they do offer more general training classes despite the fact that they are very sport/competition oriented. I got a lot out of a few of their courses. It is definitely up to you to take the information, apply it to your setting, and do the homework. In FDSA you can pay for a gold spot to get more 1 on 1 attention. But by the time you're paying for that, you might as well consider a handful of private lessons from a local, reputable trainer.
 

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Depends on the program. I've never taken one, but there are some good ones out there. The Fenzi Dog Sports Academy seems to be a favorite on this forum.

Being destructive and digging are two common dog misbehaviors, especially for young dogs! If your dog is digging up your back yard, she doesn't get to be out there without supervision. If she's destroying your house, she gets crated. Management is free and simple while you train.

If your pup is digging, that can sometimes be a symptom of not enough exercise. If you are not exercising your dog you should probably consider it. If you are, consider adding a quick game of fetch or trick training after a walk and see if that helps. If you feel your dog is getting adequate exercise but is still digging, she just might be one of those dogs that likes to dig because it's fun. In that case, you might consider a "dig box" which is her designated digging space. In the meantime, she should not be outside unsupervised. Being able to practice the behavior only makes the habit more deeply ingrained.

Destructiveness can also be a symptom of not enough exercise, but it's also a common thing even if the dog is properly exercised. Sometimes dogs don't understand what they can and cannot chew. Crating when you can't supervise is the best option. Make sure she has plenty of her own chews, and praise her for using them. Again, being unable to practice the behavior of chewing up the house will prevent the habit from becoming more deeply ingrained.

YouTube videos like Kikopup are good places to go for common dog misbehavior issues, and they're free. Personally, I would give the management and try Kikopup or free YouTube trainers (positive reinforcement only. There are some sketch ones) before paying for an in-home trainer. I would certainly be doing basic obedience classes, too, though, just because they help build your bond with your dog and they are typically affordable.
 

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the issues you are having are, in part, the breed of the dog. Hounds are independent and need to be in order to do their job (hunting). Beagles are notoriously high energy in addition to being independent. The good news is they are also typically (not always) food motivated.

On line courses to "fix" the problems you are having are usually not a good option. However, you can learn from on lin courses and then apply what you can to the dog you have. Not EVERY exercise you see will be applicable to your specific dog.

I subscribe to Dave Kroyer... but I would not say that what he has would be good for what you need.

I agree that you first and foremost need to manage the dog better. Crate and even an outdoor kennel with a solid floor (like deck boards or concrete) can both help you a LOT. I think you also need to do games with your dog that will keep him engaged and wear out his brain. There are some good things on Karen Pryor's site in addition to the sites recommended (Fenzi and Kikopup). The two sites you mentioned are not good at all IMO.

More exercise (walks) will also be your friend.
Can you get to any group classes at a local dog club? We have an AKC oriented dog Club that is member run that often offers "family manners" classes and the like. Might be worth looking into and would be less costly than individual lessons or a behaviorist.
 

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I signed her up for obedience training sessions but all it does was to make her learn basic tricks.
"Basic tricks" are not usually what dog training classes are all about, generally speaking. They should typically direct you on things like how to walk on a loose leash, recall, staying, etc, and in so doing you will learn the fundamental principles of getting those behaviours using positive reinforcement. Those principles can then be transferred and applied to more specific problems you may be encountering outside of the class environment, such as counter surfing, jumping on guests, incessant barking, .. digging etc., even though they're not really part of the course curriculum.

I'd suggest taking another, 'better' basic course somewhere else in your area. Or perhaps returning to the same establishment and explaining to the instructor the problems you are encountering at home. They should be able to evaluate your style and your dog more thoroughly and personally, giving you relevant tips and pointers, at least moreso than an on-line course will provide for.
 

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As a current college student who has taken online classes, and as a dog owner who has taken multiple FDSA classes online, I'd say it largely depends on 1) the reason you have for taking the course and 2) what type of student you are.

In college, often times with online courses you can breeze through just googling answers etc and never actually absorb/learn anything. I believe this is similar with dog training classes online. If you are an active participant, dedicated, read the materials given several times through until you fully understand them, ask questions, and "study" a lot (practice daily), I think you could get a lot out of them.

However, I think it would be hard for a trainer to help you with a problem like digging in the yard. This behavior could be from genetics or lack of mental stimulation/exercise or both and you won't really know until you make sure you are satisfying your dog's physical activity and mental stimulation needs. In that manner, I think classes are a great idea. With a hound, I'd be inclined to go through a few basic obedience type classes and then try to find nosework classes. Whether or not you would be successful in taking these courses online depends on whether you honestly believe you would/could keep up with the course and stay committed to it. On top of the online course you take being fundamentally sound, of course.
 
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