Dogs Trust

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Dogs Trust's Dog School takes the lead in Scotland

Dogs Trust Dog School in Edinburgh, which launched in Scotland in 2017, has gone from strength-to-strength, celebrating its most successful January so far. The team has trained 100 puppies in January alone this year, which is already a quarter of the total number of puppies they would normally see in a full year! 

Year-on-year the total number of dogs trained by the Dog School Edinburgh team has increased by an average of 30% - from 346 dogs trained in 2017 to 974 dogs trained in 2019. Due to such popular demand, the team is now running 20 classes every week across Edinburgh. 

Dog Trust Dog School was launched to help owners build life-long bonds with their dogs, by developing a good understanding of dog behaviour and training techniques to avoid the common pitfalls that can lead to problem behaviours. 

Amongst the newest graduates are two three-month-old siblings, whose families had no idea they would be attending the same class together. When the two Golden Retrievers, Willow and Teddy, attended their first class, they instantly recognised each other. Their owners couldn’t believe how similar the dogs looked and after a brief chat they realised their pets were related. 

Teddy’s owner, Lily, said: 

“When we heard Willow’s name being called out, we thought surely this couldn’t be Teddy’s sister?! It was such a lovely surprise to find out they were from the same family and they clearly loved being reunited with one another. 

“Classes are relaxed and fun for both owner and dog; and there are opportunities to socialise your puppy with other dogs. We got to learn all about dog behaviour and how they feel in relation to the way they act. This was very beneficial as it has given us the building blocks to continue her reward-based training at home, while we look to advance her training further at Dog School’s adolescent classes later this year.” 

Dog School’s growing success has been supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery through charitable funding to Dogs Trust. Six years ago, People’s Postcode Lottery set out to support the charity in their vision to improve the dog welfare landscape in the UK and have a lasting impact for millions of dogs. 

Louise, Willow’s owner, said: 

“Willow and Teddy are so alike, not only in appearance but also their mannerisms too. Training was great, especially for our kids because they were over the moon that Willow was taking part in classes with her sister. 

“The whole experience was really beneficial for us because our coaches were very approachable, and no question ever felt silly. Having our kids there was also a great platform to help us all better understand why training is so important. We also learnt this will be especially true as Willow approaches adolescence; continuing training at home is vital as dogs can start to fall back on bad habits while reaching maturity.” 

Julie Morrison, Head Coach at Dog School in Edinburgh, said: 

“Over the last couple of years, the number of dogs attending our classes has dramatically increased which is absolutely fantastic. We love helping to build strong bonds between pets and their owners as training is just as much about the owner as it is about instilling positive behaviours in dogs. 

“It was fantastic to see Willow and Teddy socialising in class and they have come on so well! We look forward to hearing all about their progress at home.” 

“We are hugely grateful to players of People’s Postcode Lottery, whose funding has allowed us to invest in more specialist staff as demand for our classes continues to grow.” 

If you would like to find out more about Dogs Trust Dog School in Edinburgh, please visit www.dogstrust.org.uk/dogschool or call 07388 375835 / 07920 658647.