I've been doing obedience with Finnie since he was a pup and have had him in a class with my private trainer and with multiple dogs many times but I've never had him in a formal obedience class with lots of dogs (9-10). Finnie is a very good boy and quite more advanced than Piper was at this age but he needs the distractions! Get him in a room with lots of dogs and the nervousness comes out. I've entered him in a class (it's going to be a level 1...we'll be a bit advanced) I took with Piper when he was 7 months old. She's a good trainer (has done some competitive obedience) but mainly does Rally and conformation and she does clicker training (I've done clicker training here and there with Finnie but I much prefer a marker word...it's hard to manage the clicker, leash and treat!) It'll be interesting to see how he improves over the next 6 weeks (I'll take the next class too), I haven't told my trainer we're taking this class, she's opposed to it, thinks you can do distraction training in stores and other places but she's never had a nervous Sheltie with issues around strangers. As far as Finnie has come in his training I'll never get him in the ring if I can't get him to build his confidence (and I think this is his biggest issue...a lack of confidence). I'm only sorry I didn't do this months ago but I didn't want to upset my trainer (fortunately we were on the outs, or at least I was with her for a month), now I don't care about her 'feelings' but rather I care about my dog more. Don't listen to what others tell you, do what's best for your dog!