How Much Does It Cost To Train A German Shepherd (The Shocking Truth)

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If you’ve been thinking about how much does it cost to train a German Shepherd then you’re one of the few who understand the importance of obedience for this strong working breed. 

While training prices for your GSD can quickly add up, don’t stress there’s a reasonably priced option for less than you think! 

I’ll tell you the costs you can expect to pay for German Shepherd training and give you the best option I’ve found if you’re looking for a cheaper way to train that’ll give you professional results. 

How Much Does It Cost To Train A German Shepherd?

The average price of German Shepherd training is $30 to $80 per basic obedience class.  Most people spend about $50 per hour for professional dog trainers depending on where they live.

Dog obedience training schools cost $250 to $700 per week. Expect to pay $600 to $1,250 per week for a dog boot camp.

The average cost to train a Shepherd as a service dog for therapy, support, or protection functions is $120 per hour. Some schools offer price discounts if coming twice or more per month.

german shepherd training cost per class
Take a look at the average cost to train your German Shepherd.

You can also choose to train your dog at home with an online training program or by following videos and step-by-step directions. I’ve written a great guide to get you started with your basic training here…

German Shepherd Training at Home (Step-by-Step Obedience)

Keep reading to find out the breakdown of all the costs for training your GSD, as well as the cheapest way to train your dog using a professional program.

German Shepherd Training Costs by Average

  • National Average Cost: $50
  • Minimum Cost: $30
  • Maximum Cost: $150
  • Average Price Range: $30-$80

These prices and the overall cost are based upon many factors, for example, the quality of the trainer and their level of education, if they offer one-to-one (1-2-1) classes or classes for a small group of dog owners, as well as the costs of running a training school. 

All of these details add up to the price you pay to train a German Shepherd. Let’s not forget your training supplies, such as the short leash, long leash, flat buckle or snap collar, clicker, treat bag, and treats.

You must consider your drive to the training location, the gas or expenses to park, and the problems of meeting a trainer on their schedule.

With all these points in mind, it’s no wonder so many people are shocked when they ask, “How much does it cost to train a German Shepherd?”. 

German Shepherd Training Cost: Private and Group Lessons

You can find dog obedience training through either private lessons or group classes. Group dog training classes cost $30 to $50 per session. And private training costs range anywhere from $45 to $120 per hour or more (depending on your dog’s problems and behaviors).

A 6 to 8-week package pricing deal for group dog training classes is around $120 to $600 or $20 to $25 per lesson. It’s recommended by behaviorists for group training to last a minimum of six weeks using positive reinforcement to improve communication with your German Shepherd and to help them learn their new commands and behaviors reliably.

German Shepherd Training Cost_ Private versus Group Lesson Price
Privates lessons cost more than group lessons but can address specific behavior problems.

If you want to ensure you know the commands and hand signals, as well as how to properly use your training tools, then group obedience lessons are a better long-term choice.

Expect to spend $35 to $75 per day for obedience training schools. And a staggering $500 to $1,250 per week for a more intensive dog boot camp.

Class Type Versus Costs

TypeCosts
Individual Class$45-$120 per class
Group Training$30-$50 per class
Daily Obedience Training$35-$75 per day
Boot Camp$500-$1,250 per week
Service Dog Training$0-$120 per hour

You may prefer to send your German Shepherd Dog away for a few weeks to get intensive training for their obedience or problem behaviors, but some owners prefer to participate in weekly group sessions and train their GSD themselves (which I think is a great option for most Shepherd owners). 

Training a dog to break bad behaviors can take a while, and some Shepherds have such poor manners they need longer than usual to learn good habits and be able to be reliable at home. 

The normal classes offered by dog trainers at different levels of obedience begin with puppy kindergarten classes, basic obedience training, various courses for adult dogs (with or without behavior issues), and advanced obedience training and commands.

Understand that everything a dog trainer teaches your dog must also be copied at home for the best results in training. 

If you don’t take an active part in your German Shepherd’s training, expect the cost to rise since your dog will take longer to learn. Are you wondering how much time it takes to train a German Shepherd?

Read this now: How long does it take to train a German Shepherd: 6 Steps to Speedy Success

Private Obedience Training Cost for German Shepherds

Private obedience training for a German Shepherd will cost you between $45 to $120 per session for each 45- to 60-minute class. The cost of private training for your dog is determined by many factors, such as:

  • the level of behavior or habit adjustment needed
  • and the age of your dog.
private obedience lessons for your german shepherd with a dog trainer
Private training is good if your dog has a specific problem that you want to be solved.

Many dog trainers charge an additional cost of $50 to $75 to provide an evaluation before the training starts to make sure their training style and your dog are a good fit for success. 

Basic obedience training is only as successful when consistent and done for many repetitions over time, most dog trainers sell packages of anywhere from three to ten dog-training classes upfront.

This can reduce the cost of each private session to $25-$75 per day, and most trainers are prepared to come to your home for private training sessions (at an additional cost to you).

Private training can help with many issues you might have with a German Shepherd, for example:

  • excessive barking,
  • jumping,
  • separation anxiety,
  • digging,
  • socialization,
  • and chewing.

One of the many goals of private dog obedience training is to observe your dog’s interactions with each member of the family and to instruct the family members on how to communicate with your dog so that all members will be seen with respect. 

German Shepherd Boot Camp Cost

Doggy boot camp, also known as kennel and train or board and train programs can cost $55–$75 per day. Alternatively, your German Shepherd will stay at the dog-training facility for a few weeks or longer at prices from $500–$1,300 per week.

german shepherd doggy boot camp cost
Pricing for doggy boot camp depends on if you pay for daily lessons or a weekly package.

At boot camps, pricing is higher and costs more, but your GSD gets personalized training based specifically on his disobedience problems. These problems generally take longer to fix in group classes since group classes don’t address each dog’s unique issues.

Professional Dog Training Costs for a German Shepherd (Petsmart Versus Petco)

Petsmart Dog Training Cost

At the time of the writing, Petsmart dog training costs $120 for a 6-week program. They also offer a special price of $105 with a coupon.

petsmart german shepherd training cost
Petsmart offers group lessons for various levels of training.

There are three stages of dog training classes at Petsmart:

  • beginner puppy
  • intermediate skills
  • advanced training

The puppy class teaches basic commands, such as sit, down, stay, shake, and walking on a loose leash. Intermediate includes all of the basic commands with the addition of the 3 D’s of dog training (duration, distraction, and distance).

Adding in the 3 D’s helps you control your GSD from a distance, even if there are distractions going on around you that affect your dog’s focus and concentration.

Advanced training builds upon your German Shepherd’s previous learning for better obedience reliability. You must have passed both puppy and intermediate before enrolling in advanced training.

Petco Dog Training Cost

With Petco’s dog training, you’ll learn the basics such as sit, stay, down, come, leave it, and heel in a 6-week program that costs $109 for basic puppy training. These classes meet weekly in a group setting inside the store.

petco german shepherd training cost
Petco offers group lessons that meet weekly for basic puppy training.

You may find a deal for the class that puts the price around $80 when there’s a special promotion.

Check each store’s websites for their current pricing and specials to verify their programs are a good match for you.

Service Dog Training Cost

german shepherd service dog training cost
German Shepherd service dog training costs depend upon the nonprofit and the type of training involved.

Service dog training costs depend on the type of service you want to train your Shepherd for and begin at $120 per hour. In some cases, the receiver gets the dog for free from a nonprofit, but it’s entirely dependent on the type of dog and the nonprofit’s policies.

German Shepherds have been giving their talents for many years to support people with medical issues by alerting them to possible seizures or calming someone with anxiety or PTSD during an episode.

The Cheapest and Easiest Way to Train a German Shepherd

behavior problems and german shepherd training
Even if you train your dog at home, you’ll need to stay consistent, have patience, and take your time.

According to the German Shepherd Dog Club of America, training your dog at home is essential to a life of success and happiness with a German Shepherd.

But, don’t fret over the high prices and cost to train a German Shepherd when there’s a fantastic option that’s right at your fingertips…

Use a scientifically proven dog training system that focuses on only positive training to get the behaviors and the German Shepherd you’ve always wanted. The cheapest training is the one that you’ll have fun with and practice almost every day.

You can read about this low-cost system that is cheaper than any option you’ve read about so far at my Brain Training for Dogs Review (Was It Worth My Money?)

The best part…

You won’t even have to leave your house to enjoy all the benefits!

German Shepherd Training Questions & Answers

german shepherd training questions and answers
Have questions about your next training class with your German Shepherd?

What Age Can My German Shepherd Puppy Start Training Classes?

German Shepherd puppies are ready to learn basic commands such as “sit” and “down” as early as seven weeks old. Professional experts recommend slowly introducing puppies to other dogs that are well-mannered and different people at that age, too. This is so they don’t develop bad social habits based on fear or anxiety later on.

What Vaccinations Does My Dog Need for Training Class?

Your dog needs to have its first dose of vaccinations before attending socialization classes, and of course, a deworming treatment to avoid infecting other dogs.

You must keep them on their vet’s schedule for future vaccinations as well. Have their 6-, 12-, and 16-week vaccinations against distemper, measles, parainfluenza, parvovirus, adenovirus, and rabies before beginning obedience training.

Consider the following optional vaccines: kennel cough, coronavirus, Lyme disease, and leptospirosis. Don’t take a sick or unwell pet to training classes or you’ll be asked to leave.

Will Trainers Work With Aggressive German Shepherd Dogs?

Most trainers work with aggressive behavior in dogs at a higher price. On average expect to pay $150 per hour for a private trainer specialized in correcting or managing aggression problems. Training facilities won’t let you bring your aggressive dog to a group lesson due to liability issues, but most trainers will come to you for private classes.

Have an evaluation completed before the training starts to determine what issues and problems you’ll need to pay a trainer to help solve. An evaluation is an additional charge that’ll cost $55-75. 

What Type of Training Should I Use for a German Shepherd: Reward Vs. Punishment-Based Dog Training?

Be careful where you choose to train your German Shepherd since not all training schools use modern dog training practices, and some even use force to train your intelligent breed. Interview the trainers or classes you’re interested in to see which training methods they use with dogs.

Make sure you are comfortable with the handling of your dog and stay away from punishment-based dog training. This type of training uses force and pain to coerce your dog’s behaviors and most owners don’t need to resort to punishment at the initial training stages.

Punishment based – Choke, shock, or otherwise cause pain to the dog when bad behavior is chosen. This is not fun for the dog and isn’t necessary for basic obedience.

Rewards-based – Reward with food, praise, or sounds. This is pleasant and positive for your German Shepherd and increases your bond with your GSD.

The program I use and support is the Brain Training for Dogs Academy, which is entirely positive and rewards-based training. It’s also all online, so you can use the program at your convenience wherever you are!

You can also use games to help train your German Shepherd and keep costs lower. Training games increase your intelligent breed’s obedience while helping them to have fun and bond with you!

Here’re the best links to get started…

9 Fun Games for German Shepherds (That You Shouldn’t Ignore)

10 Jobs for German Shepherds at Home to Supercharge Their Lives

Where Will My German Shepherd Dog Training Take Place?

Group classes and obedience courses generally are taught at a facility that will give everyone and their dogs enough room to maneuver and have space. But a private session may take place at your home if requested and the dog trainer will charge travel fees. This varies from $1 to $2 per mile from a stated location area. 

What Should I Bring When I Train A German Shepherd?

You’ll need a few basic supplies to bring to class. Be sure to take your dog’s favorite healthy treats to the class, as well as a treat/bait bag, short leash and a flat buckle collar with your dog’s identification.

Wear comfortable clothes that you can move freely in and shoes that are soft and don’t have heels. You’ll be standing for a good portion of your classes.

Don’t know what type of treats are safe and healthy for your GSD?

Read this…

15 Best Healthy Treats for German Shepherds (Nutrition-backed snacks)

The Longterm Cost of Training a German Shepherd

Training your Shepherd is essential happiness as well as to your dog’s. Young puppies must be taught good manners, what is and isn’t acceptable behavior, and how to live in their human pack. 

A German Shepherd has no idea of his physical strength and an untrained GSD is always a risk! 

So, train your puppy or adult dog right from the start.

The lowest cost to train a German Shepherd Dog is by training them at home with an online training program.

Any money you pay for your dog’s training now will give you peace of mind later in life when he’s a large, powerful adult. It’s not so much a question of “How much does it cost to train a German Shepherd,” but instead what type of life are you looking forward to having with your companion?

Training helps you to build the dog of your dreams and prevents future issues from ruining your relationship.

Enjoy it all…

Especially living and loving a German Shepherd Dog. He’ll make all the time and effort worth your while.