Finding the Right Dog Trainer – Harder Than You Think

I’m reblogging a spectacular post from pawsforpraise on choosing a dog trainer. Covers both the big picture and the nuts and bolts. This would be incredibly helpful for pet owners so I hope everybody passes it on.


Here’s some advice from Jean Donaldson on how to choose a dog trainer.  After her suggestions, I’m going to take the liberty of telling you how I would want her questions to be answered if I were going to try to find a trainer for my own dog.  You may not realize it, but trainers do, from time to time, attend one another’s classes, participate in working seminars, or take classes from trainers who are experts in dog sports or aspects of training that we are not expert in.  As an example, I can lay a simple track and have my dog follow it for fun, but I certainly am not an expert in lost person behavior or variable surface tracking!  So, if I wanted to know more about scent work of that kind, I might take my dog and go to classes with someone who does.  Anyway, back to…

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About eileenanddogs

Passionate amateur dog trainer, writer, and learning theory geek. Eileen Anderson on Google+
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1 Response to Finding the Right Dog Trainer – Harder Than You Think

  1. Marjorie says:

    Excellent info Elieen, I wish I had it six years ago when I first got my Taffy. I had never experienced a dog like her before. At the tiem Bark Busters was new on the scene and unfortunately, I called them. The lady was very nice and well meaning I’m sure, but really just as ignorant as I was when it came to dog behaviour. She wanted me to throw bags of chains on the ground to startle my already frightened dog and to growl at her if she followed me from room to room. Needless to say, after she left the bags of chains went in the desk drawer (I must get around to thowing those out!) and they haven’t seen the light of day since. I didn’t know much, but I did know I didn’t want to frighten my already nervous dog. I then got a positive clicker trainer who was again well meaning enough and provided me with lots of info (info overload actually) that I was unable to absorbe becasue my dog spent the whole 2 + hrs barking and reacting while she competed for air space, oh my aching head. Then I came across behaviourist Silvia Jay (thankfully), who entered my home calmly, but totaly focused on Taffy and her behaviour. Yes, Taffy was reactive, but Silvia knew just how to respond and had the patience of a saint. She was the first to see the positive in Taffy as well as her issues.

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