Is Paying for Dog Training worth It? Yes. There are a number of reasons why paying to have a dog trained is an excellent idea. It can help them to live more peacefully with other pets in the home.
There Are Many Reasons to Hire a Dog Trainer
Many people own dogs, perhaps because they are just so fun to have around. Dogs have earned the title of “man’s best friend” for a good reason.
Dogs come in all shapes and sizes, as well as varying temperaments. Not every dog is well-behaved or listens to its owner’s commands.
It is not because they just don’t want to listen, but rather they simply need to be taught what is expected of them.
The good news is that dogs are eager to please and make the perfect students for dog trainers.
Sometimes training is necessary to make it possible for a dog to continue to live with its owner.
If a dog barks continuously and neighbors are beginning to complain or chewing on the furniture, they need to have their behavior corrected so that everyone is happy.
No one wants to hear complaints about their dog’s behavior or to have to replace expensive shoes.
Some owners want their talented canines to have the best chance of winning first place in a competition, while still others would like their dogs to be well-mannered.
Others want to give their dog the ability to perform a few fun tricks such as shaking a paw, rolling over, or speaking.
Proper training can even give them confidence and abilities they wouldn’t otherwise have.
Plus, a dog trainer can even offer additional insight about their student that can be quite fascinating.
Many behaviors result from a dog’s experiences and upbringing, so if an owner rescued their dog from a shelter or adopted it from an anonymous owner, a trainer may be able to shed some light on any unusual quirks they may have.
How to Choose a Dog Trainer
It is a good idea to interview prospective dog trainers to find out why they are passionate about what they do and find out if they seem easy to work with.
When choosing a capable dog trainer, it doesn’t hurt to inquire about credentials such as certifications.
A legitimate dog trainer should have the certification that is recognized by the International Association of Canine Professionals, or IACP, International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, or IAABC, or the Certification Council for Pet Dog Trainers, or CCPT.
It’s good to ask a few questions, such as why they chose to train dogs, how many dogs they have trained, or anything else that is of concern.
They should also be somewhat personable and easy to work with since training a dog requires a team effort between the owner and the trainer.
There should be plenty of open communication between the dog owner and the trainer so everyone is on the same page and can make training a success.
It is a good idea to discuss goals and expectations with potential dog trainers to avoid confusion or misunderstandings as training progresses.
If the dog has any special needs, it is a good idea to seek a trainer specializing in their specific disability since they will have a better understanding of their learning abilities.
Since paying for dog training is a bit of an investment, it is important to get the most out of the lessons, so it’s important to stay informed and involved.
Every Dog is Trainable
The answer to the question, “Is Paying for Dog Training worth It?” is: absolutely. Paying for training lessons is a bit of an investment, but the reward is a well-mannered and more manageable dog.
Having an obedient dog makes it easier to enjoy their company because they will not be getting into mischief and causing stress in the relationship.
Training lessons are just as important as food, water, and shelter, and its value shouldn’t be overlooked.
Different dogs will have different personalities and levels of stubbornness, so how much training is needed will vary.
Although it is typically ideal to train a dog when they are around six months old, they can be taught as early as seven to eight weeks old.
However, it isn’t impossible to teach a more mature dog new tricks since every dog is trainable with enough patience, time, and effort.
There is nothing wrong with utilizing a dog trainer, and the results are invaluable. Sometimes a dog will misbehave because they have social anxiety or are even depressed.
Dogs share many of the same emotions with people, but they cannot speak, so they often do not get the help that they need and deserve.
A dog trainer can often pick up on these cues and will be able to provide the necessary tools to help owners help their dogs handle their emotions in a positive way.
My dog used to have an accident every time I took her to outings where there were a lot of people around. I never realized that she had social anxiety until my trainer pointed it out to me.
With some training and a lot of patience, my dog’s trainer was able to teach me how to comfort her when she got stressed.
Sometimes, dog owners need to be trained so they can encourage their dogs how to behave and obey commands with learned and effective training methods.
Different Types of Dog Training Methods
There are a few different ways to train a dog, but the most common methods include positive reinforcement, scientific training, electronic and clicker training, and relationship-based training.
Dog trainers may also use Modal-Rival Training or Mirror Training. The type of training that a trainer will use will depend on the dog’s temperament and the behavior they are trying to correct.
As the name suggests, positive reinforcement uses plenty of rewards and praise to train and enforce positive behavior and is ideal for teaching commands.
This type of training requires effort and consistency from both the trainer and owner of the dog in order to be effective.
Scientific training relies mostly on psychology, conditioning, and positive reinforcement to train canines without the use of a reward system.
It can be difficult to find a trainer who utilizes this method since it does require a lot of research to stay up-to-date on the ever-changing scientific training methods as new studies are conducted.
It is an excellent method for enforcing and encouraging off-leash relationships between dogs and their owners but may require a lot of time and patience.
Electronic training is sometimes used to correct bad behaviors and for distance training such as field or hunting work.
If used the right way, it can be very effective and safer than using choke collars.
Electronic training involves using an electric shock collar to shock or spray a citronella scent when bad behavior is displayed.
When not used correctly, this method can actually cause anxiety in some dogs and should only be used by trained professionals.
This particular method focuses on punishing bad behaviors rather than rewarding good ones. This is not always the most ideal method, but it is an option if other methods prove ineffective.
Model-Rival Training or Mirror Training
This method teaches dogs by observing the desired behaviors acted out or completed by a model, typically the trainer.
This method is effective because it encourages the student to strive for good behavior through some friendly competition.
Mirror training is similar, but instead of the trainer completing the demonstrations, the owner is the model to be mirrored.
The student, or dog, will learn by example, and this method utilizes a dog’s natural instinct to please its owner.
This is a great method for the dog owner who has a strong bond with their furry companion.
It is an ideal method if the dog and owner spend a lot of time together and have many teachable moments throughout the day. It’s also more ideal for those who may not be able to attend regular and scheduled training lessons.
Relationship-based training is structured around the relationship between dog and owner and nourishes their bond through open communication.
It also uses plenty of positive reinforcement, and control is placed on environmental conditions rather than the dog’s behavior.
Progress is reached as the dog continues to learn new skills, and more challenging lessons are gradually introduced as skills are mastered.
This training method is very involved for the owner and requires a lot of patience but is a very satisfying way to build a strong bond between owner and canine.
Clicker training uses a device that creates clicking sounds to emphasize and encourage positive reinforcement.
The trainer will sound the clicker or whistle to indicate that the dog has accomplished its task satisfactorily and is about to be rewarded.
As progress is made, verbal commands will be added, and lessons will become more challenging. Professional trainers often use this method of training since it is a very effective way to teach dogs tricks and more complicated tasks.
It is not the best method for correcting undesired behaviors but can still be effective when paired with other training methods.
Training is a Real Game-Changer
Training doesn’t end when the lesson is over but should continue at home, so it takes some effort and commitment on the part of the owner.
However, it is well worth the time and money to have a well-behaved dog. Having a well-mannered and obedient dog will open up the door to many new and enjoyable experiences that may not have been possible prior to training.
For example, having a trained dog makes it possible to take them places and bring them on more outings, rather than leave them with a dog sitter, which is more fun for everyone.
Hiring a dog trainer is a great way to learn a lot of invaluable information. This information can be found through online research, but it won’t be a personalized learning experience that only comes from one-on-one training between the owner, dog, and trainer.