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Hello, I'm trying to get a Malinois but haven't been able to locate a suitable trainer. Do you think I'll be able to train a dog as a beginner? What are your opinions on this?
 

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i guess there are still people that don't realize WHENEVER you own a dog, YOU will always be the primary trainer and the dog will learn most everything.....good or bad.....from YOU
  • therefore it should make good common sense to learn about dog behavior BEFORE you get one
  • a great place to start is volunteering at a shelter to help out doing anything just to get canine exposure. they always welcome volunteers and you will learn a lot about canine behavior first hand
  • a professional trainer will only assist - if they are REALLY good they will spend more time with YOU than the dog, so you can do it better
  • btw, @ Omerhaus is correct

get some videos from experts like Michael Ellis
DON'T rely on youtube videos until you check the background thoroughly, and if you can't don't bother watching them. at best they are "best of xxxxx highlight films" and never show the full story

watch Cesar on TV and learn a few general things but don't ever assume it's as simple as he makes it sound
watch that other TV show about the guy who boards/trains in San Diego, CA. he knows his stuff and is better than Cesar by a long shot

read the book "Culture Clash"...a GREAT resource and easy read that will teach you things i guarantee you don't know now and change the way you think about dogs. written by a good friend

"training" is simply a fancy word for CONTROL.......anyone who cannot control their dog is a BAD trainer and anyone who can control their dog is a great one. the amount of tricks it knows is irrelevant

i've trained owners and their dogs for over 20 years. can't remember how many owners with dog problems told me they "had dogs all their lives", but couldn't control any of them LOL

off the soapbox....have fun and start learning NOW....then get a dog later
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
i guess there are still people that don't realize WHENEVER you own a dog, YOU will always be the primary trainer and the dog will learn most everything.....good or bad.....from YOU
  • therefore it should make good common sense to learn about dog behavior BEFORE you get one
  • a great place to start is volunteering at a shelter to help out doing anything just to get canine exposure. they always welcome volunteers and you will learn a lot about canine behavior first hand
  • a professional trainer will only assist - if they are REALLY good they will spend more time with YOU than the dog, so you can do it better
  • btw, @ Omerhaus is correct

get some videos from experts like Michael Ellis
DON'T rely on youtube videos until you check the background thoroughly, and if you can't don't bother watching them. at best they are "best of xxxxx highlight films" and never show the full story

watch Cesar on TV and learn a few general things but don't ever assume it's as simple as he makes it sound
watch that other TV show about the guy who boards/trains in San Diego, CA. he knows his stuff and is better than Cesar by a long shot

read the book "Culture Clash"...a GREAT resource and easy read that will teach you things i guarantee you don't know now and change the way you think about dogs. written by a good friend

"training" is simply a fancy word for CONTROL.......anyone who cannot control their dog is a BAD trainer and anyone who can control their dog is a great one. the amount of tricks it knows is irrelevant

i've trained owners and their dogs for over 20 years. can't remember how many owners with dog problems told me they "had dogs all their lives", but couldn't control any of them LOL

off the soapbox....have fun and start learning NOW....then get a dog later
i guess there are still people that don't realize WHENEVER you own a dog, YOU will always be the primary trainer and the dog will learn most everything.....good or bad.....from YOU
  • therefore it should make good common sense to learn about dog behavior BEFORE you get one
  • a great place to start is volunteering at a shelter to help out doing anything just to get canine exposure. they always welcome volunteers and you will learn a lot about canine behavior first hand
  • a professional trainer will only assist - if they are REALLY good they will spend more time with YOU than the dog, so you can do it better
  • btw, @ Omerhaus is correct

get some videos from experts like Michael Ellis
DON'T rely on youtube videos until you check the background thoroughly, and if you can't don't bother watching them. at best they are "best of xxxxx highlight films" and never show the full story

watch Cesar on TV and learn a few general things but don't ever assume it's as simple as he makes it sound
watch that other TV show about the guy who boards/trains in San Diego, CA. he knows his stuff and is better than Cesar by a long shot

read the book "Culture Clash"...a GREAT resource and easy read that will teach you things i guarantee you don't know now and change the way you think about dogs. written by a good friend

"training" is simply a fancy word for CONTROL.......anyone who cannot control their dog is a BAD trainer and anyone who can control their dog is a great one. the amount of tricks it knows is irrelevant

i've trained owners and their dogs for over 20 years. can't remember how many owners with dog problems told me they "had dogs all their lives", but couldn't control any of them LOL

off the soapbox....have fun and start learning NOW....then get a dog later
Hello, Rick.
Thank you for your response, it's been nearly 6 months and I'm still researching. Learning new things always excites me, and I'm still trying to interact with dog owners, trainers, and watch training videos. Do you think a beginner like me can train a puppy like a malinois by watching videos?
 

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We are first time dog owners and we have a working line German Shepherd.

He has plenty of prey drive and has lots of the normal stuff but he is fairly soft and doesn't have heaps of aggression, although, he is only one.

We have had minor teething issues but overall, I feel really confident in my abilities right now without being cocky. This is because I started with a "doable" dog. Maybe if I got a dominant, highly aggressive and high drive dog, I would have been able to handle him as a complete beginner. Probably not. And then my confidence would have been knocked. And maybe the dog would have been given up. Shitty.

I was unsure about exercise needs but I was confident in my abilities to learn how to give our dog structure and boundaries, etc. Getting a dog is always a bit of a worrying experience as you are understanding the full responsibility of owning the animal. That's great.

If I were you, I'd be doing the research on balanced training and structure and boundaries and then decide if you are able to step up and provide this.

I think the thing is.. if you want a working dog, you can't be a pussy. That's the bottom line. You should be in charge without being unhinged. Calm and in control without being unfair. Capable of giving the dog what it needs. Exercise. Training. Give it an outlet for the drives it has.

Research and research breeders. My advice would be to get a normal, relatively chilled out mal with good nerves that is social and easy. It will still be difficult but the dog will be more likely to be okay and so will you, given you are capable.
 

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Hello there, you can train a malinois easily. They are beautiful dogs and very, very smart, however, they are not your typical family dog. Famous for protecting livestock, the Belgian Malinois is now known for protecting man. They are great dogs. But with a high work ethic, they need the perfect combination of stimulation, physical activity, and socialization. Thank you. Check out this amazing site, you will surely love this.
 

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there is another way to look at this situation.

yes, certain breeds generally show certain traits and behaviors, but also, all dogs DO have their own individual personalities. but please keep in mind that ALL dogs LEARN exactly the same way. a better understanding of basic canine behavior and how to condition (aka: train) it will ALWAYS work the best. breed bias can sometimes lead you in the wrong direction.

think of it as a dog first, and a mal second :)

sorry but i haven't yet checked out the link provided, but i will. good luck whichever way you go
 
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