When we started puppy club at Pretoria shepherd dog club with our maverick, then 4 months old, my husband and I didn’t quite realise how much we all would benefit from the training and advice we would get from the training staff at the club.

Maverick is just what his name implies: a maverick. Incredibly energetic and a potential behavioural nightmare. We realised this early on and enrolled in Puppy Club where I had to learn to be assertive and set boundaries, something that was very difficult for me and which is still an ongoing process.

Puppy Club was great fun, and mav especially loved the socializing part of the program. Mav is now an incredibly well socialized dog that loves making friends and is comfortable in any situation involving other dogs. 

The Puppy Club also prepared us for what to expect from the adult obedience classes. When we started those Mav had already learnt some of the basic commands and this made it much easier. Mav was our first puppy so in addition to the training and socializing, I also found the education given to us during the 6 weeks regarding feeding, dog psychology and health extremely beneficial.

In the adult classes the focus shifted from socializing to more obedience training which we needed quite desperately at that point. Mav was a demanding little monster. There was a time during the training where I wondered if Mav would ever be able to do the heel work and walk on the lead without pulling on it continously,  but the our trainers, Terence, Jaques and Tanya helped us find the best training methods to handle mav’s energy and stubbornness and our heelwork has improved so much. Another problem was the recall. Mav would cheerfully make you chase him down the street pretending not to know his name. Consistently working on it in class and practicing at home has helped immensely.

Mav is now almost a year old and he has not only improved in training aspects but also in general as he is much calmer, not jumping up on guests, not stealing food off our plates and not demanding attention by barking and jumping on us all the time. All it took was us being constantly reminded to be pack leader and to set boundaries to improve many of the behavioural problems that many a smack on the bum could not fix. But it is still a process and there are many things we still have to work on, and with the help of the club training staff we will continue with the training and hopefully get to a level of obedience where we can do some manwork.

All in all Pretoria Shepherd Dog club has helped us raise a confident, happy dog that is well socialized and a lot of fun to be around.

Thank you to every trainer that has helped us and is helping us on our journey to obedience. We look forward to every class!!