on coming to this site to get professional help in training your dog!
Only about 10 percent of dog owners/guardians care enough about their dogs to get help in training them. Many people either live (very unhappily) with a dog with problem behaviors, get rid of the dog, or euthanize their dog. It's so sad because many times fixing whatever is bothering them is very simple and easy.
Training your dog, whether it’s a puppy or adult dog, is important because if he is trained, chances are much greater that he will stay in your house for his entire life because he is a pleasure to live with. Many, but not all, dogs that are surrendered to humane associations or shelters have behavior problems that no one wanted to deal with, and it was just easier to get rid of the dog rather than to train him. That’s a shame because training is really easy and enjoyable – and the results speak for themselves.
Training teaches him how you want him to behave, it increases the bond between the two of you, and it’s just plain fun. It doesn’t happen by sprinkling magic “training dust” over your dog. It involves spending time with him so you both are communicating on the same wavelength – canines and humans communicate differently, and a good trainer works with you as well as your dog by showing both of you how to understand each other. And many times, it's a lot easier than you imagine.
Here are some things to think about.
Why do you want to train your dog?
- prevent problem behavior from starting
- eliminate an existing problem behavior
- train for a specific dog sport or activity
- make your dog easier to live with
- train your dog to do what you want
- all of the above
- or something entirely different!!!
Who is the best trainer for your dog?
You are. You know more than you think you know. You are the one that spends the most time with him. You are the one that he has bonded with. Your dog has studied your every move and knows what you are going to do probably before you do it. Your dog in most situations tells you what he is going to do before he does it. Can you read those signs? How do you communicate with him so that he does what you want? That's where working with the right trainer is key.
In some instances, it may be to everyone's benefit to have a trainer train your dog. In that case, be sure that the trainer trains you as well. It's a bit embarrassing if your dog knows more than you do -- and he is trained and you aren't!!!
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Why do dogs act the way they do?
There are three influences on any dog’s behavior: genetics, the environment, and the owner/guardian. Trainers can’t do anything about genetics -- the natural instincts and temperament your dog was born with -- but they can influence the dog’s environment and you, the owner/guardian. In other words, they can change how you and your dog behave or act in a given situation.
The second area of influence is you as the owner/guardian. Training is proactive: you are taking the initiative and showing your dog how you want him to behave in a given situation. If all you are doing is punishing your dog for behaving a certain way, then you are being reactive to your dog. If punishment is effective, it should take only two or three times to work. If you are repeatedly punishing your dog for the same thing, then it's not working! You are only dealing with a symptom and not the actual reason for the behavior. Your goal is to change your dog’s behavior so he will act differently the next time he is faced with the same situation.
The third area is the environment. Sometimes, changing the environment is all that is needed to change your dog's behavior. A good trainer will explain to you how these factors impact your dog's behavior and training and know how to tailor his or her training to you and your dog.
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How do I find a good trainer?
Well, you've certainly come to the right place!!!
A good trainer should lead you down another path of thinking and give you a model of what to do and how to do it. It’s similar to the old saying that if you give a hungry man a fish, then you have given him his dinner. If you teach him how to fish, then you show him how never to be hungry again. If a trainer trains your dog and not you, then you may have a difficult time trying to get the same behavior from your dog as the trainer does.
So specifically, how can you find a good trainer? There are about a gazillion ways to train a dog to do the same behavior. There are about a gazillion different personalities of dogs and people. The solution is to find the right method with the right trainer for you and your dog. And again, you're in the right place.
Here are some tips on Choosing a Dog Trainer.
Visit our trainers' Websites. Read the Articles to learn more about their philosophies and how they think. Here are some additional Training Tips and things to think about that may help you.
Please give us feedback. We welcome your comments. Send them to: caryl@DogTrainersDirectory.com
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Remember, changing habits does not happen overnight.
Give yourself and your dog a chance.
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This Web site is a list of trainers who have submitted their names to be included here. There are no warranties or guarantees about the trainers, methods used, or the quality of instruction. It is up to each dog owner/guardian to do his own research and interview each trainer.
By using this site, you agree Dog Trainers Directory is not responsible and cannot be held liable for any of the actions or omissions of any trainer listed on this site.
by Caryl Wolff
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