5 places to visit online to get the best virtual dog training

5 places to visit online to get the best virtual dog training

You are here because you are committed to finding the right approach to train and raise your dog. Kudos to that! We live in a world that spoils us with options for every little thing. Finding the right fit can be challenging and overwhelming at times.  In the field of virtual dog training, we are dedicated to helping you find the best.

6 things to look for in a good virtual dog training course

Knowing what behavior issues you want to work through with your dog is a good starting point. Spend a few days just observing your dog – their triggers, level of anxiety, behaviors exhibited when triggered and so on. This will give you a good idea on what aspects you need the virtual training course to cover.

Once you have that in place, here are a few checkboxes to cross out when scouting for virtual dog training courses online –

  1. Convenience

Convenience is the primary reason why people choose virtual dog training over in-person or board and train. The ease of access to credible and accurate information it provides regardless of the location you are located in is the top most thing to look out for in an online course.

  1. Resource library

No amount of theoretical information may ever match the efficacy of a live session with an expert trainer. However, when you need to revisit a certain video demonstration or read more about a specific dog behavior, the resource library of the course is the best place to go. Make sure to sign up for a course that boasts a top-notch resource library put together by qualified experts.

  1. Trainer qualifications

The difference between a randomly googled information and a paid course is the credibility of the experts. Read up on the qualifications and methods used by the trainers on every virtual training course you shortlist because your dog deserves only the best!

  1. Success rate

The success of online training courses is dependent on 3 things –

  • Pet parent involvement and proactivity
  • The quality of training imparted by the course and the trainer
  • The pace at which the dog learns

If a virtual training program offers surefire results or a money-back guarantee, it shows confidence that is backed by experience.

  1. Personalization and dedicated time with a trainer

The popularity of a virtual training program does not always ensure its efficacy for you and your dog. Every dog is unique in terms of breed, age, temperament, and behavioral issues. While the resource library may help to a certain extent, it is the level of personalization of the program that decides the quality of the outcome.

Personalized training and dedicated time with an expert trainer allow the pace to be adjusted according to the dog's progress, ensuring that the dog is not overwhelmed or under-challenged.

  1. Accountability

Owner involvement in virtual training programs ensure pet parent accountability to certain extent. Other aspects that add to it are progress tracking, home work, interactive sessions, continued chat support and so on. A good virtual training program is as invested in a dog’s well being as the owner. This ensures accountability on both ends.

Our top 5 picks

To save you the trouble of looking through hundreds of options online, we have put together a list of 5 virtual training programs that cover most aspects of being a great course to consider.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Homeschool by LAY LO®

We’re going out on a limb here to say we love our programs by Homeschool by LAY LO the most because of the sheer amount of heart we have put in to create them. In a brief period of 5 years, we have helped thousands of people improve life at home with their dogs through our award-winning products and online support from our expert collective.

What we love about it

  • We provide 1:1 live video calls with a certified force-free dog trainer who is dedicated to learning about you and your dog and helping you work through issues
  • You get to meet your trainer before you begin
  • We offer you the convenience of getting all of your questions answered, throughout the week on texts by your trainer
  • We have a dedicated team of experts in place to answer questions ranging from dog behavior, grooming to nutrition real time
  • We custom make plans based on your dog’s needs and your training goals
  • We boast a resource library that consists 20+ expert-led videos, daily challenges, nutrition calculators and shopping lists

What’s missing

  • We don’t have an app yet that could act as your center point for all training and behavior needs. As of now, our website would be the focal point
  • We demand accountability from our customers. The high standards we set for training is as applicable to our customers as much as us

General Review: 4.9 Stars

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  1. BEST IN POPULARITY: Courses by Dunbar Acedemy

Ian Dunbar is a well-established name in the dog training and behavior industry. With his bestselling books, vidoes and courses, he has helped thousands of dogs and dog owners understand each other better and foster a more nurturing and fulfilling bond. Online training courses by Dunbar Academy has a lot of credibility and authenticity attached to it.

What we love about it

  • Offers a wide variety of courses and covers topics ranging from potty training, essential puppy training, impulse control, reactivity training, etc
  • Offers bundle packages at a discounted rate
  • Their courses are highly interactive and has a lot of emotion attached to it
  • Their methods are science based and rely strictly on positive reinforcement
  • They have a 30-day money back guarantee if you are not satisfied

What’s missing

  • They do not offer live 1:1 sessions
  • Several videos show Ian training in live classes with low audio quality

General Review: 4.1 Stars

  1. BEST APP BASED VIRTUAL TRAINING: Goodpup

Goodpup virtual dog training has set the bar high in virtual dog training. GoodPup training is app based, 1–1, at-home, on your schedule, with trainers ready to help 24/7. Apart from access to live sessions with their expert trainers, their app has an impressive resource library which enables pet parents to revisit training cues and learn at their own pace.

What we love about it

  • Private, video call sessions with a trainer are available any day of the week
  • Between sessions, you could use GoodPup’s illustrated practice guides and chat with your trainer whenever you have questions
  • Their trainers are invested in your dog’s well being and make sure to check in with you regularly through the week
  • They have personalized training plans for every dog

What’s missing

  • It is quite pricey as compared to several other virtual training options that provide the same value in lower cost
  • There have been challenges reported in the enrollment process

General Review: 4.7 Stars

  1. BEST IN VARIETY: Spirit Dog Training

SpiritDog Training offers game-based and positive online dog training courses on a variety of topics. The best thing about their course is how modern and constantly evolving their techniques are. Their core belief is that YOU are your dog's best trainer and their mission is to help you succeed.

What we love about it

  • Their courses are taught by high quality, certified trainers
  • They cover a variety of topics such as Puppy training, dog reactivity, leash walking, perfect focus, Rescue dog training, recall building and so on and have specialized courses on each one of them
  • They come at an affordable price
  • Their courses can be accessed on any mobile or computer device, regardless of the location
  • Once you sign up, you will be part of a highly engaged community of trainers and course alumni who will help support you along your training journey

What’s missing

  • You may have to pay extra for 1:1 live sessions with their trainers

General Review: 4.9 Stars

  1. BEST MASTERCLASS: Masterclass by Brandon McMillan

This Masterclass is taught by Brandon McMillan, a popular American TV personality, animal trainer, author and producer best known for his role as Emmy-winning host and dog trainer of the television series Lucky Dog on CBS. The Masterclass covers a wide range of topics with trust and control building at the heart of it.

What we love about it

  • Contains real clips from Brandon’s training sessions
  • Boasts a rich resource library of high-quality videos
  • Relies on positive reinforcement and science-based methods
  • It is a great Masterclass to learn the nuances of general dog training and communication
  • Comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Reasonably priced

What’s missing

  • Does not offer live 1:1 sessions
  • Is not customized to suit every pet parent’s need
  • This course is more like Jack of all trades but Master of none

General Review: 4.2 Stars

How we chose the best virtual dog training courses

Having designed a top-notch virtual training course ourselves, we know a great course when we see one. Our list is curated by a team of experts who have a great deal of experience in hosting virtual classes. We thoroughly understand pet parent psychology and are well versed with the nuances they look for in online dog training.

At LAY LO pets, we are deeply invested in our canine customers and believe in raising the bar high when it comes to their well being. The list that we have put together covers every aspect we would personally look out for in a great virtual training program.

Does virtual dog training really work?

To answer this question in one word – Yes! They work wonders for pet parents who are committed to their dog’s well being and are willing to put in the work. They work amazingly well for pet parents who are looking to learn something new and teach the same to their dogs. They are excellent for pet parents who are facing behavioral issues with their dogs and want to help them get through it. Sign up for a class and experience it to believe it.

In conclusion

With the sheer number of online dog training courses out there, there is something for everybody. In today’s day and age where products and services are striving to be available at the click of a button, virtual dog training programs are here to stay for long and for good. While we have put together a list of the crème-de-la-crème of online training programs, don’t shy away to conduct your own research and find the shoe that fits best.

Author Bio: Siddhika is a certified dog trainer, behaviorist, and professional pet writer. She has the qualifications and experience in the theoretical as well as real-life applications of science-based dog training techniques.

With the expertise to write about a plethora of dog-related topics and a personal interest in dog cognition and behavior, Siddhika is an out-and-out canine nerd.