Part 1 - Dog Trainer Red Flags

Dog Trainer Red Flags - What to Look For When Searching for a Dog Trainer

Today, we bring you our Part 1 in a three part series about how to sniff out hidden red flags when choosing a dog trainer.

Honestly, we've been a little nervous about doing this; speaking a bit plainly about something that might be a bit of a hot topic, but it's necessary.

We'll be shining a big bright spotlight on what to be on the lookout for when looking for a dog trainer - from lifetime guarantees to social media post reveals and all the flags and shades of red in between.

Let's start with “Dog Board and Train.” Also known as “Dog Training Bootcamp.” 

 Dog Training Boot Camp
This is sending your dog off to a place, usually a facility where dogs are kenneled and trained anywhere from a week to several weeks. [In theory,] they come home to their owner, a trained dog, perfectly well behaved. Cue disappointment music.

PSA #1

I have not seen a place that uses Modern Training techniques. My hope is this will change, and I think it will in the near future. But for now - This is not me slamming the facilities who do this type of training. I'm certain there are places that do this in a responsible, quality way. However…

Here’s the thing: the scenario is not really set up for proper learning. Your dog, in a day to day environment of training, only needs about a 15-20 minute session per day, maybe several times a day but with long breaks between. Not the intensive training that can be done at locations like this. If they're training like that, that's great. However…

PSA #2

The knowledge transfer needs to happen to the person, the owner, the dog person, their primary person, and that can be tricky. Because the dog comes home, there might be a little handoff session when you pick up your dog even, but there's not consistent training of the person with the dog. 

For instance, I prefer the option for dogs called, “Day Training” in the industry, because they get to remain in their home. We call it, “Train Your Dog for You.” We only take certain cases for this because we want it to be conducive to the scenario that the client’s looking for for their behavior, training, modification, whatever it may be. And within those parameters…

  • We visit with the person regularly and also the dog.
  • We train the dog one on one.
  • We also have the person there for several sessions,
    • Making sure that they're comfortable with what we've taught the dog and
    • How to do follow-up at home in their interactions with the dog every day.
  • We also send written and video tutorials to our clients during the entire process so they can follow along.

I hope this provides some new perspective for you as you begin your trainer search, or if you are thinking about switching trainers.

There's so much more for us to share on these topics. So I hope you stay tuned in, and we can help guide you in helping your dog be a happy dog.

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