We have all seen TV shows where a dog trainer may use different techniques to control a dog. These techniques are labelled as “training.” Sometimes these television personalities have no education, promote punishment, and salacious television in the name of ratings and, of course, cash.
Just because you can get your dog to sit doesn’t qualify you as a dog trainer. You need to look for specific things in a professional Edmonton dog trainer before you let them take care of your beloved Pooch.
If you are searching for a dog trainer but don’t know what to look for, here are four things you need to look for in a professional Edmonton dog trainer.
Your Professional Edmonton Dog Trainer Needs to Have an Education
Ideally, anyone you entrust to perform a service for you should have an education and a background in their field. A professional dog trainer should be certified in canine studies, and there should be certificates to prove it. Usually, you would find this information on their websites. Be sure that the trainer you look for is certified and knowledgeable about the type of training you require. Do you need to teach your dog basic obedience, or do you have a reactive dog that may need more work? Look for these labels after your dog trainer’s name: CPDT-KA®, CPDT-KSA®, CBCC-KA®. These labels are designations that prove your dog trainer has put in the work to educate themselves to be the best trainer they can be.
Your Dog Trainer Should Use Proper Training Techniques
Before training even starts, discuss what training techniques your potential dog trainer uses. Ideally, you want someone familiar with reward-based training or positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement can strengthen the bond between the owner and the dog and make training fun for dogs! You should always feel comfortable with the training methods they use. Anything that involves punishment for unwanted behaviours is not ideal. Their morals should line up with yours. If you disagree with the training methods they use, then do not proceed with them.
Review Their Safety Protocols
Depending on the type of training your dog requires, safety should be an absolute priority of your potential dog trainer. If your dog trainer is willing to teach a group class full of reactive dogs, that is a definite red flag.
Here at Diamond In The Ruff, we specialize in reactivity cases. We commit to maintaining clean personal and professional bite records. Safety protocols should always be followed and changed when necessary.
It is imperative to maintain a safe environment for owners, dogs and any trainers part of the training sessions. A bite affects everyone involved and can be detrimental to your dog as well. Your trainer should ensure that all clients are diligent with compliance and safety. Safety rules and the reason they are in place should be openly communicated to you.
Your Professional Dog Trainer Should Be Personable
As much as you rely on a dog trainer to teach your dog everything they need to know, the trainer is also responsible for teaching you how to command and communicate with your dog. It is important that they can communicate with you openly before, during, and after the training process. When you speak to the trainer, it will allow you to get a feel for their personality. It will also give your dog a chance to get to know them for a bit. If they have social media outlets, be sure to check them out on there. It will allow you to see them in action and see how other dogs respond to them. Be sure to check out reviews and what other owners have said about the trainer you are scouting out. If you have questions or set up a meeting with them, assess how they answer your questions. Are they able to explain things clearly? Do they seem knowledgeable? Are they thorough with responses?
Looking for a professional Edmonton dog trainer can be a bit of a process! Don’t sweat it if you have to go through two or three different trainers before you find the right one. It will be worth the search when you find someone that you like, and will treat your fur baby like their own.