Dog training is definitely not rocket science and is easier than you would expect particularly if you can get help from a good dog training book or guide. It’s also certainly possible for almost any dog owners to train their dogs themselves provided they put in adequate amount of effort.
Nevertheless, you might still want to get additional help from a professional trainer, especially if you got a tough nut to crack in your hand. Before you engage a trainer, it’s always best that you do some research first as there are many trainers with different teaching styles and not every style suit every dog or owner.
Here’s a guide for you to find a reliable trainer:
It wouldn’t hurt you to open your mouth to ask someone for advice or recommendation.
- Ask your friends, even strangers you meet in the park for the contacts of their trainer if you notice that he owns a particular well-train dog. Even if they don’t engage a trainer, you could still possibly pick up some valuable training tips. You’ve got nothing to lose and I’ll bet the owner would also most probably be flattered.
- Ask your veterinarian for recommendations. He deal with dogs everyday and must have seen the best and worse dog. He should have contacts for some good trainers in your area.
- Ask the local Humane Society, dog breeder or even your pet supplies shop owner. They are also a good source of information and might just be able to direct you to a trainer who is particularly suited to training your dog breed.
The directory has a search engine that allows you to search trainer by specific geographical location and also list out if trainers are Certified Pet Dog Trainer (CPDT) to help you make your decision.
*CPDT is certified by the Certification Council for Pet Dog Trainers an international testing and certification program for professional pet dog trainers. It is basically to ensure that the trainer has a certain level of knowledge and expertise. To be certified, trainers must have at least 300 hours of dog training experience and have passed an exam that assesses basic knowledge of canine training. For more details, visit http://www.ccpdt.org/
There are several things to look out for before you engage a trainer. You might want to consider these factors first before you engage one from a list of good contacts you got. The Trainer must have the following traits:
- must be humane and gentle with the dogs during training.
- must be an effective communicator and teacher. Both you and your dog must be able to understand his teaching for effective training. In short, “Do you understand the words that are coming out of his mouth?” As dog training involve both you and your dog, you must also be able to understand his teachings so that you can practice them when you get home.
- must be experience and up-to-date with the latest training methods. You might want to request a sit-in session to observe him and see if he can deal with the particularly difficult dogs. Don’t be afraid to ask him questions about his training background, training techniques, methods and etc. An experience trainer should have no problem answering your questions.
Distance - This might not be a big factor but certainly one worth considering. Imagine a 4 hours drive for every training session!
Hope these tips are useful to help you look for a good dog trainer.
Good luck in your quest for a good trainer!