DOG TRAINING 101
Congratulations! You've already taken the first step to becoming a better dog owner. A lot of people look into dog training in order to stop unwanted behaviors, but dog training can also unlock the ability for you to communicate with your dog like never before, allowing you to experience more fun and fulfillment than you could without dog training.
A professionally trained dog will bring more joy into your life.
If this is your first time looking into professional dog training, you are probably noticing a lot of different options. It's normal to feel unsure about where to start. Is dog training something that is right for you and your dog? How should you find the right trainer?
DOES MY DOG NEED TRAINING?
Dogs naturally crave structure therefore they all need training in one form or another. Training can eliminate bad or unwanted behaviors while establishing new and healthy behaviors.
A lot of dog owners start off teaching their dog how to sit, or "shake". While that's a good start, a lot of those behaviors are more "tricks" than true training.
Dog training is designed to teach reliable and consistent responses anytime you communicate with your dog. A lot of dogs may come to us when we have food, or sit for us sometimes, but oftentimes those behaviors are inconsistent. For example:
Are you 100% confident your dog would come back to you if he/she saw another dog across the road?
Are you 100% confident your dog wouldn't pull, bark or bite if they crossed paths with another dog or person on a walk?
We all love our pets and want the best for them. Training is essential to ensure SAFETY for you and your dog while also enabling you to experience more FUN AND ENJOYMENT with them than ever before!
A good analogy is a car seatbelt. You (hopefully) put on your seatbelt every time you get in a car even though its not put to use every time you go for a ride, however, it's incredibly important when you need it.
It's similar with dogs...
Training will allow you to avoid any potentially negative situations. Instead of your dog barking and chasing the dog across the street, they will instead listen to you to stay next to you, helping you avoid stress, aggravation, and possibly worse.
Fun and Enjoyment
When you got a dog, what did you envision? Most people think of playing with their dog in the house or outside, or going on calm, peaceful walks in a park, a beach, or even just around your neighborhood.
You certainly didn't desire a dog pulling you around on a leash, barking at other people or choosing when to respond when you call them.
This isn't good for you or your dog!
You and your dog deserve a better experience.
Training will dramatically improve the experience you will have with your dog for life. Do the things with your dog you always wanted to do, and much more!
FINDING THE RIGHT DOG TRAINER
Tips for finding the best trainer for you:
Not all dog training is the same, so make sure you ask questions to any trainer that you are considering.
First, ask each trainer about their methods and philosophy. Every dog is different and your trainer needs to have experience with multiple techniques. Similar to humans, different dogs learn in different ways. A one-size-fits-all approach will not be beneficial in most cases. Make sure the trainer has a variety of tools and methods to help YOUR individual dog based on their individual needs.
It’s important to identify the type of training you need. Good trainers have niches and work best with particular cases. Some love working with puppies, some love working with basic obedience, some work best with protection or sport work and some love those difficult behavior cases. Understand what your goals are and start looking for trainers that have experience in that area.
Education and Experience: With so many people getting dogs recently, more and more dog trainers are popping up. Make sure your trainer has plenty of experience, as well as years of formal training. Ask where they received training.
Ask if the trainer does this full-time. There are a lot of part-time trainers out there. In order to provide the best training for your dog, training should be their exclusive focus.
Finally, look for someone who you’re comfortable with. This person will either be in your home or will be responsible for the care of your best friend. Ensure you’re comfortable with the trainer, their techniques, and the services they will provide!