Pauley’s Pups to Obedience School: Choosing a Trainer

At Pauley’s Pups, we care deeply about the dogs we carry, both before and after we find them a home. To get your relationship off on the right foot, you should start thinking about how you’ll train your puppy immediately. Here are a few things to consider when looking for the ideal trainer.

Check Their Rep

There are no four-year degrees in dog training. Instead, there are training programs that award certificates upon completion. Do a little research into where and how a trainer earned their credentials, as some places are more reputable than others are. It also helps to get a referral from a trusted friend who has seen the trainer in action.

Learn Their Methods

Every dog trainer has a slightly different approach from the next. Some may lure a dog into desired behavior with a reward of food, while others might position the dog physically and reward good behavior with simple praise. Learn a little about what school of thought a trainer is aligned with and decide whether it’s right for your dog.

Beat the Bad Habits

Timing is crucial when considering a proper approach to training your dog. If you can start teaching good habits before bad ones develop, the process will be tremendously easier on both you and your puppy. Once bad behavior develops, you’ll need to resort to more negative reinforcement and replacement behaviors. Don’t start too late.

Be a Stickler

Too many dog owners act as if weekly lessons are enough to keep your dog learning and developing properly. However, reinforcement between training sessions is far more important than during them. While it would be nice if an hour a week could do the trick, remember that dog training is meant to teach you as much as it is for your puppy. Ignoring bad behavior throughout the week is no good for anyone.

Look Into Your Breed

None of these things should be considered without taking the breed of your dog into account. Each one has a different natural temperament, and varying receptivity to particular methods and techniques. Talk with people who have knowledge of your breed, whether it be your veterinarian or a friend with experience.