‘Send-Off’ dog training has been around for a very long time. Its origins are based around primarily training bird dogs. These dogs would be sent off to the trainers kennel, where the trainer would teach the dogs how to do retrieval and basic field work. Most of these dogs were never house pets, and lived with other dogs near the favorite hunting spots, only to be used a few times a year. ‘Send-Off’ training progressed to the point of training house pets as well. The general idea is that you take your dog to the trainers facility, and leave them there for a specified time. This is normally a few weeks to a couple months depending on whats needed to be done and the difficulty of the dog being trained. During this time there is little to no contact between the owner and the dog, until the training is completed. A dog obedience training video is a different approach altogether. Instead of having someone else do all the work, it puts the duty of training the dog on its owners shoulders. There is no separation between dog and owner when using a dog obedience training video. No need to drive to another state to drop off or pick up your dog, in fact no need to drive at all. This style of training can be done in your own home at your own speed.
The largest advantage of ‘Send-Off’ Training is also its biggest disadvantage. ‘Send-Off’ training has someone else do the actual work of training the dog with the idea that once the dog is trained it will be an easy hand off of control to the dog owner. However dogs are intelligent enough to know when one person does something different than another person. With the owner almost completely eliminated from the equation of establishing dominance and authority, it is hard for the owner to be capable and proficient in the techniques and applications of obedience. The dog tends to realize this more week by week until eventually they listen worse than they ever did before. A dog obedience training video puts you in control by teaching you directly how to train your dog, and you as the owner build up a strong case that you are in charge. And since you built that bridge yourself, its easier to see when it needs maintenance and you know how to rebuild it. All training done through a dog obedience training video is done in the home. No training in a ‘Send-Off’ training is ever done in the home. You need your dog to obey you in your own home, not in the trainers! Aside from the critical flaw of taking the dog owner out of the training equation, ‘Send-Off’ training is not cheap. It can range from several hundred to several thousand dollars. A dog obedience training video costs a fraction of what ‘Send-Off’ training costs, and there are many available for under $50 dollars.
As a professional trainer I see and help teach many owners who sent their dogs away to get trained and were very frustrated within months of getting them back. The most notable case was an amazing Schutzhund 3 German Shepherd Dog male that
all the commands. It also knew that its owner did not know anything. The man spent over ten thousand dollars on this trained dog that was useless to him because he did not know what he was doing. So he had to add my fee on top of everything he had already spent. A good dog obedience training video might not help everyone, but I would wholeheartedly recommend it over a ‘Send-Off’ training program. If you look around you can find some that have satisfaction guaranteed warranties which make them practically risk free. If a dog obedience training video does not help you, my next advice would be to hire an In-Home dog trainer to help you out as they also base their training in your home and can be there to tell you when you are doing something wrong. Not even the best video can tell you that.