Every dog is different, so finding the right trainer for yours is a combination of research and knowing what you want to achieve through dog training. Here are some tips and considerations to help you when looking for a trainer who will be right for your dog.
Know Your Dog and Desired Objectives
We don't expect you to be a dog expert and to know all the quirks and personalities of the various dog breeds. We will glean information about your dog's character and behaviors during training sessions, but how well you know your dog can help you assess a prospective dog trainer's options. For example, some people like their dogs attending group classes, where they can socialize with other dogs — and have plenty of situations for distraction training.
Many dogs, however, benefit more from private training because they are too easily distracted as it is, or because they become anxious or excitable around groups. One-on-one training also allows the dog trainer to focus on specific behaviors you wish to curb and particular responses you want to teach your dog. Before you start contacting potential Decatur dog training services, have your goals in mind.
Unlike many professions, there is no license required to train dogs. Many dog owners feel more comfortable when the training service is a member of an association of canine training professionals. For example, the fact that we are part of the International Association of Canine Professionals (IACP) means that we pride ourselves on our high standards of excellence and business practices. We also promote the mandate of the IACP — responsible dog ownership, evaluating standards of other canine associations, and reducing animal cruelty and abuse.
Peruse the Services Offered
Taking a look at what services are offered can tell you a lot about a dog trainer. We'll use ourselves as an example. Along with more conventional dog training in Decatur, we have canine training programs for the detection of:
- Pipeline leaks
- Bed bugs
This means that we train working dogs upon whom people, businesses, and organizations rely to maintain safety and order. This tells you that we have pretty advanced knowledge and techniques when it comes to dogs, so our training should be effective and efficient — not surprising, given that we have served in the military.
For our main on-leash and off-leash training (but we also offer a board and train program), we require owner participation. This tells you that we see training — and your life together — as a partnership, and want to make sure that at the end of the day, your dog understands and listens to you. For us, it's not just about having an obedient canine but fostering your friendship and mutual trust and wellbeing.
Gauge Your Trust in the Trainer
Dogs are our best friends, lifelong companions, and part of our families. Their training (and yours, because you will be learning too) should be done by a professional with a lot of industry experience, high standards, and who has earned your trust.
This is one of the reasons that our main on-leash and off-leash training programs come with a free one-hour consultation. Not only is it a good way to make sure that we and our clients are on the same page with respect to desired training outcomes, but it's also an opportunity for you and your dog to get to know us (and for us to get to know your dog). Instead of just signing you and your dog up for a program, we take that time to make sure you get what you want out of it and that you and your dog are comfortable putting the training in our capable hands.
Have any questions or want to talk about what kind of training is best for your dog? Contact us today — we are always happy to help.