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megansha 04-08-2014 01:40 PM

Professional trainer or no?
I would like some input on whether you all used professional trainers or not, and why.

Pearl is 19 weeks, and progressing very well. I walk her 3 miles daily, and take her to the park 3-4 times a week. She has been socialized a great deal, I live in the city so I have taken her to restaurant patios, parades, stores, etc. She is crate trained (as of 10 weeks, when I got her) and potty trained (as of 12 weeks) I've taught her to sit, shake, come, lay down, play dead, and hide her face.

I'm considering a trainer to work on leash manners mostly, but I don't know what else they could teach her that I can't? Any input would be so great! Thanks!

DJEtzel 04-08-2014 02:00 PM

Typically, trainers don't train your dog. They critique your training and give you the skills to train them yourself.

I'm a professional dog trainer, and I still take classes with my co-workers to get feedback, ideas, things to change to help/progress quicker, and more socialization that I cannot provide at the dog park or on walks.

Packen 04-08-2014 02:03 PM

Is is very helpful to have an experienced trainer watch you when you train. This way you get pointers to improve your training as we all make mistakes that are obvious to spot by a second set of eyes only. So yes, your training will improve and bad habits decrease if you work with a knowledgeable trainer.

boomer11 04-08-2014 02:05 PM

I wouldn't pay someone to give me advice unless I hit a wall and my methods aren't getting the results I want.

Training classes are good because of distractions. Every dog listens well inside the house where the most awesome thing is a treat. Outside there are things better than treats.

Shade 04-08-2014 02:07 PM

I think having a extra set of eyes critiquing is a great thing and worth the money. Not to mention in group classes the dog also gets the experience of working under distractions and keeping focus on you

You're never too old or young to learn something new ;)

SuperG 04-08-2014 02:17 PM

I used a personal trainer when my pup was about 7 or 8 months old for on leash behavior and overall it was money well spent. I agree with DJEtzel regarding what a trainer does, Yes, I know there are various approaches and some training programs will take your dog and train it for you but I don't think that is what you are talking about. The trainer we hired basically taught us how to teach our dog...and what I liked was the trainer proved his methods by displaying them using our dog. I rather enjoy the fact that there are those out there who will broaden your horizons simply because they know a ton more about dog training than the average and above average owner.

How about teaching your dog to become proficient off leash? That is personally my goal and it seems to be a bit more work than on lead. Ultimately, I want to take my dog anywhere and everywhere I go, if allowed.


megansha 04-08-2014 02:37 PM

I would love to have her proficient off leash! I won't have her off leash in the city, but it would be nice to have the option. I would also love to visit the option of therapy, she has such a sweet demeanor and is a very calm puppy overall. I agree that I would take her everywhere if I could!

megansha 04-08-2014 02:40 PM

As far as distractions, etc. the trainer I've found actually comes to my home - is that a hindrance? I was hoping that it would be beneficial given that I socialize her on my own.

Gretchen 04-08-2014 02:50 PM

I think you should first observe some group classes in your area, see if any are a good fit for you. It might be helpful to go to a group session now.

When you dog is about 9-10 months sometimes the perfect puppy turns into a terrible teen and at that point you'd want to step up training and if you start observing trainers now when you are not stressed, you'll know who to consult when the time comes.

SuperG 04-08-2014 04:24 PM


Originally Posted by megansha (Post 5344953)
As far as distractions, etc. the trainer I've found actually comes to my home - is that a hindrance? I was hoping that it would be beneficial given that I socialize her on my own.

I requested of the trainer we used, to conduct the training in places where the triggers were most present....otherwise, everyone looks like a genius in one's backyard or living room.

Ask the potential trainer if part of the training will take place in areas where there is plenty of distractions after the "easy" training and instruction is completed. I met our trainer at the parking lots of dog parks...guaranteed to be plenty of action there. Also we went to areas where there was lots of people, cars, dogs, noise etc.


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