Are you in need of quality dog training? Dogs can learn a lot of things, but it can be difficult to teach them. That is where a trainer can come in handy. Depending on the type of training your canine needs, hiring a dog trainer can be simple or complicated. Basic obedience and manners are not hard for most dogs to learn, but getting a dog trained as a service dog -- or training an aggressive dog to be more sociable -- can take significantly longer and require more specialized experts. Here are some questions that can help you find the best dog trainer for your situation.
Ask about the dog trainer's background. Ask for references and see how happy others have been with the results. Press for information about how trainers learned their crafts and whether they hold any kinds of certifications.
What are their philosophies?
What kind of training methods will they be using? It might be a good idea to do some research into some basic theories and find a trainer who uses the methods you are more comfortable with. Dog training is not a regulated field, and anyone can claim to be a trainer. This is why it's important to learn as much as you can about different trainers.
Is this trainer accepting aggressive animals?
Does your dog have a tendency to be aggressive toward people or other animals? If so, you will need to find a trainer who can accommodate that. Some trainers work with several dogs at once, while other trainers work with dogs on a solo or small-group basis.
How much should you try to do on your own first?
Some basic obedience training can be done on your own, such as coming when called or having them sit. These are very easy. It gets harder when you want the dog to learn more than the basics. At some point you will find what you are doing is not effective and you may want to hire a professional at that point.
Does this dog trainer have online reviews?
Reputable dog trainers shouldn't be afraid of online reviews -- in fact, they should welcome them -- which means they should have pages set up on Yelp, Facebook, Google Plus, and perhaps others. View these pages and read any reviews and comments to learn more about each trainer. Be cautious about doing business with trainers who don't have online reviews.
Does this dog trainer offer boarding?
Dog trainers who help dogs become service and therapy animals -- or to overcome more deep-seeded aggression and other behavioral issues -- often offer intensive programs that include short-term room and board. These programs are superior for dogs who need to learn more than basic obedience skills.
How will the transfer of training work?
A dog tends to obey the one who taught them and may develop more of a relationship with the trainer. How will the dog trainer help you in the transferring the authority figure for the dog? How will the trainer help you so that the dog will obey you just as she has learned to obey the trainer?
What is a positive trainer?
This is a new buzzword in dog training that reflects a shift in training methods. The days of punishment training are fading away. Positive trainers use positive reinforcement, avoid physical punishment, go beyond the dominance theory, and try to do their training from the point of view of the dog.