I was speaking with a couple of my clients yesterday, and they have 2 very demanding jobs, 4 kids, and 2 dogs. I tell you this because prior to contacting me, they contacted another dog trainer to work with their dog. When they brought the trainer in, he was qualified, competent, and knew how to train the dog. He also had all of these things he wanted the owners to fit into their lifestyle. Part of it was keeping charts of what their dog was doing.
If you’re considering hiring a dog trainer, I think the dog trainer has to be flexible enough to be able to work with you at what you’re willing to do while teaching you. I’ll clarify my approach and what I’ve learned over the years, in case I have any aspiring dog trainers reading. This may be useful for you, as it has been for me.
Generally, the first thing I want to do is hear out my clients. I want to hear everything they have to say without interrupting them. I used to be so bad about that. It’s important to hear out your clients before interrupting them or interjecting anything of your own.
The next thing is laying out a simple plan, make sure it doesn’t sound too complicated. When people talk to me about dog training I get excited. I love training dogs, but the problem with that for me is that I may overwhelm them with information and they aren’t going to be able to make sense of all that in the beginning.
If you’re a dog trainer or looking to hire one, make sure it’s a simple process. The process is to train the dog and then train the human. The dog is trained to stay where we tell them, walk nicely on a leash, and come when called as well as play well. Just those 4 things solve so many dog problems.
As part of the process of training the humans, I coach them on how to communicate non-verbally, the process of turning verbal cues into voice commands, how to aim the dogs at the target behaviors, and then how to make that meaningful.
So, if you’re looking for a local dog trainer, these are the types of things that you want to see. It’s not all about what they will teach your dog, it’s also about what they will teach you to do. Instead of a dog trainer demanding you do things the specific way they do it, you should have a process open enough to be able to tailor it specifically to your personality and your dog and how you run your household. Those aren’t easy things for dog trainers, but we are professionals and we should be able to handle those challenges.
I hope this is useful for you. If you’re looking at a dog trainer and would like me to pre-screen them using the internet, I’d be happy to take a look at their website and social media pages. If you’d like me to help you make that determination. Just send me a text at (832)-734-5189