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Questions to Ask a Dog Trainer


 Questions to Ask a Dog Trainer

What should I expect from a dog trainer?
Dog training questions

When thinking about hiring a dog trainer, you obviously want the one that is right for your dog, but also a person who is highly trained in the area of training most interested in.  For instance, you might want your dog to go through obedience training to learn the basic commands. However, you might be interested in a hunting dog, which would require a completely, different group of skills.

Working with the right dog trainer will be the difference between success and failure.  While the process is not rocket science, it does take time and effort.  In addition to your dog’s personality and training goals, you will also need to consider things such as the amount of time that would have to be dedicated, whether the trainer comes to you or you go to him or her, and so on.  We suggest you locate a number of reputable trainers through your veterinarian, breeder, or online, and then interview each, finding the right match.

Ask about the trainer’s experience, specific to the area of training of which you are interested.  How many years has he or she been training dogs, what breeds of dogs, and so on.  You should also ask for references, which then need to be follows up on.  With this, you can gain a better understanding of the trainer’s abilities through satisfied customers.  Often, just talking to another customer will give you all types of information that you might not otherwise get.

We also suggest that you ask to sit in on a training session.  Even if from a distance, you would be able to see the trainer in action to determine if this is the type of person and/or training you want.  Most trainers are highly skilled, using harmless methods for getting the dog’s attention and then taking him through the various commands.  Unfortunately, some trainers still us negative discipline as a form of training, which can have disastrous results.

Then, you need to know if the trainer works in groups or offers one-on-one training.  Usually, a professional dog trainer will offer both.  Of course, along with this comes the price, which will vary dramatically on a number of factors to include geographic area of the country, private or group training sessions, type of training, and so on.  Remember, the highest priced dog trainer is not necessarily the best, nor is the lowest price trainer always the worst.

Sometimes, dogs and trainers simply do not fit.  You can usually tell by the reaction from the dog.  If he shies away, acts fearful, and even aggressive toward the trainer, you need to pay attention. Often, dogs will pick up on things that humans miss. Therefore, take your dog to meet the few trainers in which you are interested and then watch his reaction.

Finally, determine the scheduling of the training sessions and location.  Depending on the dog trainer, some will come to your home, some will have you go to their training facility, and others will choose a park or other neutral location for training.  For scheduling, this could be anywhere from one to five days a week, again depending on the trainer and the type of training you need.