Sit … stay … no … stay!

These are your toys … these are my toys … don’t touch!

NOOOO … outside – you go potty outside!

Training a new dog can be trying experience.  It is important that you give yourself the tools to be successful in training your dog.  It takes a lot of work to train your dog on your own – so if you find yourself looking for some help – selecting a dog trainer can be an important step to ensuring that you and your new dog become best friends.

Some of the hit TV shows have put a spotlight on the different styles of dog training. Find a style that you are comfortable with.  Look for a trainer that is certified.  Two certifications to look for are CPDT-KA “Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers” or CDBC “International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants”.  You can use the Association of Professional Dog Trainers website to search for certified dog trainers in your area.

During the selection process you will want to ask the potential trainer the following questions.

1.  What training method do you use?

  • Lure-Reward Training – enticing the dog with a treat into the desired positions.
  • Compulsion-Praise Training – manipulation of the dog into the desired position by placing or using training equipment.
  • Marker Training – using sounds, clicker, words to immediately mark the dogs positions.

2.   What is your educational background in the area of dog training?

  • Look for someone that is certified or has an extensive background in successfully training dogs.  Ask them for references and speak to others that have used their service.

3.  What is some of the recent continuing education that you have attended?

  • It is important that anyone obtaining a certification attends continuing education so that their certification is still valid.

4.  Do you belong to any professional organizations?

  • It is important that your potential trainer has a passion for what they are doing and being actively involved in professional organizations is a great way to show they love what they do.

Once you have established your trainer and started working with them, keep in mind all dogs are different.  Your dog may pick things up quickly or it might take a lot of work and consistency for your dog to pick up certain items.  Do not get discouraged all relationships take work.