Jump to content

What To Look For With A New Trainer

Guest BiggiesOwner

Recommended Posts

Guest BiggiesOwner

Hi All,


I've posted about my new grey Biggie's growling/listening issues previously - and to help work on/manage them I've scheduled an appointment with a local dog trainer (that advertises using only positive training methods). Any suggestions on what to expect or look for? I've never had to go to a dog trainer before and am really hoping to get some good strategies to use from him/her to work on with Biggie.


Should I expect to just speak to them about the issues I've been seeing initially or will they independently evaluate Biggie themselves in addition to talking to me?


I'm thinking of writing up a list of the things I'd like to work on with the trainer (in order of importance) - would this be too much for the first meeting?


Any tips or positive/negative experiences dealing with trainers would be greatly appreciated.


Thank you!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My suggestions would be...


1. Make sure the trainer uses positive reinforcement methods only. It helps if the individual is educated in dog behavior and current behavior modification techniques. Ask them where they got their training, and if they're certified with any professional dog training organizations (AABP- American Association of Behavior Professionals, APDT- Association of Pet Dog Trainers, and CCPDT- Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers). ANYONE can call themselves a quote unquote "dog trainer" and open a business, but the good ones are usually accredited. I'd stay away from anyone who uses words like "dominance," "alpha," "bossy," "pushy," etc. Obviously, you don't want anybody who uses prong collars, shock collars, or choke collars either.


2. It would be ideal if the trainer had some degree of experience training sighthounds. Greyhounds' bodies work a little differently, and they're a bit more challenging to motivate than other dogs. I've had some decent non-greyhound trainers in the past, and as much as I liked some of them, they all seemed to have a lot of unrealistic expectations of my greyhounds. Once, we had a trainer who owned mini-schnauzers trying to teach the Greyhounds 101 class. She didn't understand that our dogs weren't comfortable sitting 30+ times in one class. I'm not saying that greys are "less trainable" in any way, but it does help to have someone familiar with the common greyhound idiosyncrasies and quirks.


3. There are some trainers out there who have specific experience working with fearful or fear aggressive dogs. I've read through some of your other posts and think this would be a huge benefit to Biggie. Having someone who can pick up on subtle cues, fear thresholds, deescalation, etc. would be key in his case.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...