With lockdown the usual dog sport courses and classes are not available options, but this doesn’t mean that there are not still (LOTS) of online alternatives that will give you plenty of food for practice with your dog in the comfort of your home or (if you are lucky to have one) your garden. From online puppy classes and dog training courses, to virtual dog trick classes, but also dog sports including agility, obedience, dog yoga and more have been taken online. The best thing is that suddenly you are not limited to your local area and not even to the UK – there are no borders and you can explore the best of the best from across the world! In this guide you will find the best dog training online resources selected for you.
The best online dog training resources
Online basic puppy/dog training
- World-renowned dog trainer Victoria Stilwell (best known as the star of the international hit TV series It’s Me or the Dog) has free videos and tutorials that will help you teach your puppy basic commands with the positive reinforcement method. A great resource also for a first trouble-shooting.
- You can also find a bunch of free online resources by world agility champion and dog trainer Susan Garrett listed the presentation page of her free Facebook group, to help you navigating the first essential steps of dog training.
- A free course that seems to be very popular is celebrity trainer Zak George’s free 30 Day Perfect Pup with Zak George
Paid-for online courses
- Home School the Dog by Susan Garrett world agility champion and famous dog trainer. Enrolment was free during April and gave access to two months access – at the moment you can join the waiting list.
- Susan also runs an online programme called Recallers, aimed at helping you building a better relationship with your dog through fun interactive games and positive reinforcement techniques (also closed at the moment, but you can join the waiting list).
- Dog sports coach Kamal Fernandez’s “The Jungle Book”, an online course following the steps of his training journey with his latest addition to the family, Malinois puppy Jungle, which includes sophisticated socialisation, firefighting reactivity, dealing with over arousal, tips for effective play and more.
1-2-1 online coaching
- Effective dog training starts with you being able to motivate your dog and dog trainer Craig Ogilvie is most known for his expertise in interactive play, helping dog handlers creating great interactions with their dogs through play. He offers online 1-2-1- coaching sessions.
Dog tricks online classes
- On dog trainer Zak George’s Youtube channel you can find a playlist dedicated to dog trick training
- Dog Tricks playlist on Dog Training by Kikopup Youtube channel
- Kyra Sundance is a world-renown Stunt Dog Show performer and celebrity dog trainer. Her website offers a wide range of dog trick online classes, from 101 trick classes to trick certifications and up to coach certifications. If you prefer the book version, she wrote the 101 Dog Tricks book (affiliate link), which covers the tricks taught in her online courses. This is one in our library at home and it is really clearly explained, although I must admit that our past attempts to learn some of the advanced tricks – ie the ‘dead’ command – haven’t been particularly successful.
Foundations for dog sports
If you wish to get your dog into a dog sport at some point, going though a foundation course can make a huge difference. Foundations work include what is commonly referred as ‘shaping’, which is teaching your dog new behaviours in small incremental steps, as well as focus work, which will be of essence for any sport you may take on. To be honest, even if you have no intention to take on any dog sports, the exercises you learn can be quite useful simply to build a better relationship with your dog, teach them tricks or just having a very well-behaved dog.
- Our good friend dog trainer Kamal Fernandez offers online foundations courses (individual courses or bundle – price for the bundle is £197). He has also launched “The Jungle Book”, an online course following the steps of his training journey with his latest addition to the family, Malinois puppy Jungle, which includes sophisticated socialisation, firefighting reactivity, dealing with over arousal, tips for effective play and more.
Agility online courses
Please note that agility, if not practiced safely and trained appropriately, can be dangerous for your dog as dogs can get injured, therefore we’d recommend you take a proper agility foundation course/discuss your dog’s requirements with an expert agility trainer before diving into this discipline.
- Introduction to dog agility – a short video which provides some good insights into agility by Zac George, for beginners
- Pam’s Dog Academy free Youtube Dog Agility Training How To videos playlist (if you are already familiar with the sport)
- For an overview of the obstacles you will find in competitive agility check out this video by the Kennel Club
- If you are a beginner, Agility courses on Fenzi Dog Academy include:
- Intro to Agility taught by Loretta Lake Mueller. The course starts on 1 June 2020 for 6 weeks (registrations open from 22 May 2020 to 15 June 2020), different price depending on subscription type (from USD 65 to USD 260).
- Foundation jumping for all sports with Loretta Lake Mueller – same details as above.
- The Glue for Future Agility Stars – taught by Nancy Gagliardi Little
- For all levels – agility champion Natasha Wise offers online classes:
- you can either purchase various educational modules (bite-sized) focussing on a range of skills and exercises; or
- you can join her Agility Wise Online Training Club bi-weekly online classes for startes (beginner KC G1-3 – UKA Beginners – FCI A1 levels), novice (KC G3-5 – UKA Novice – FCI A2 levels) and advanced (senior/champion KC G6-7 – UKA Senior / Champion – FCI A3 levels), priced at £13.50/month (that gives access to two online classes a week that you can train on your own of with a group of friends).
Competitive obedience online resources
- Canadian multiple obedience and field trials world champion Janice Gunn runs a free Youtube Channel where she has been sharing her tips on obedience and field trials over the last 11 years.
Paid for courses:
- You can find some competitive obedience classes on Fenzi Dog Sport Academy
Dog enrichment inspiration
You don’t need to go full on with a dog sports to keep your dog mentally stimulated. Instead, there are simple ways to do it, that don’t require much effort and often you can use what you have at home. The ony limit is your creativity.
- The most brilliant canine enrichment online resource has to be AniEd Ireland’s #100daysofenrichment, a very comprehensive guide with tutorials on all sorts of enrichment activities you can try with your dog
- You can also get tons of inspiration being part of the ‘Canine Enrichment’ Facebook Group, with a massive community in the region of almost 294K members. When we were first introduced to the group by our friend Vulric the Wolfdog we were mindblown by the range of games we had never though of. An example of a super-easy to do at home is putting a treat in a muffin tray and cover all holes with balls, inviting your dog to find the treat (may not be the most successful game if your dog is more motivated by balls than by food).
Dog yoga online classes
For mindfulness and relax, you can join a dog yoga class (‘doga’). Dog yoga guru Doga Mahny is hosting doga online classes on Wednesdays via Zoom, for £10 a session, and other selected days (prices vary).
You can find the full schedule on Doga Mahny’s website. In addition, she often co-hosts doga sessions (watch our Dog Events Calendar for future dates). What do you need for participating are a mat, a quiet space, comfortable clothes and a Zoom account
This was all from about our selected dog training online resources tips, but we’ll leave you with a bonus track…. something that has very little to do with dog sports or training… a dog photography course for beginners.
Dog photographer Kerry Jordan of Fur & Fables (formerly Whippet Snippets) is offering a “FurDography for Beginners” course, teaching about how to photograph your dog, with bi-weekly assignments, troubleshooting sessions, weekly round-up and image assessments and access to an exclusive Facebook group. What you need is a digital camera (best if DSLR) and your dog. Price of the course is £100 and you can ennrol on Fur & Fables’ website.