Whether your dog needs help with basic obedience training, potty training, or advanced sports training, professional dog trainers can make a huge difference.
That’s especially true for new puppy owners. Even with years of experience living with your canine companions, expert dog trainers can help you hone your skills and troubleshoot problems. Group classes also allow your furry friend to socialize with other dogs.
So, how can dog-owners in the Virginia Beach area find expert dog trainers?
Choosing A Dog Trainer
When your dog needs a trainer, K9Aholics are the professionals to call.
Here are smart tips recommended by K9Alcoholics experts to help dog-owners in the Virginia Beach area find the best dog trainers for their pets.
1. Look for a Trainer that Offers the Training Your Dog Needs.
Different dog trainers offer various skills and services. To narrow down your wants and needs, here are a few things to consider:
Class or Individual Training?
If you have a new puppy, a group class offers your dog the opportunity to socialize with others. Puppy training classes are also more affordable than individual training.
General Training or Help With Specific Needs?
If you’re dealing with behavioral issues like aggression, barking, or separation anxiety, you’ll need a behaviorist or an expert dog trainer in that area.
Consider whether your dog needs behavior modification, leash training, or advanced training.
Short-Term or Long-Term Training?
Consider whether you need short-term help to make your dog happy around your family or long-term goals like obedience training or agility competition.
Some people also look for dog training in Virginia Beach because they love dog sports or hanging out with other dog owners.
Investigate Different Training Methods
Choosing the right trainer for you and your dog can be frustrating with all the different dog training methods available.
Here are popular dog training techniques:
- Positive reinforcement is a popular dog-training method that involves rewarding desired behaviors. That way, your dog can associate good behavior with the reward. However, this training method requires consistency, so your entire family needs to use the same reward systems and commands.
- Scientific training: A dog trainer seeks to understand the nature of your pet, its ability to be trained, and the effectiveness of punishments or rewards. The trainers rely on studies and experiments done by animal behaviorists. However, some research-based methods might not be appropriate for some dogs, so dog parents need to pay attention to new research.
- Relationship-based training: Uses several techniques that focus on an individualized approach for humans and dogs. It’s the relationship between humans and dogs that drives everything. This training technique strives to meet the needs of the dogs and pet parents, fostering communication and strengthening their bond. However, the trainer must understand the dog’s body language, the rewards that motivate a dog, and how to meet your pet’s basic needs before training.
- Model/rival (mirror) training: The mirror training technique is based on the idea that dogs learn through observation. By providing a rival or models for good behavior, your dog will learn to mimic many behaviors. A trainer can use another human as a model, scolding your dog for unwanted behavior and praising them when they complete tasks on command. As an observer, the dog learns what they need to do correctly using the model. This dog training technique is suitable for pet owners with a strong bond with their pets or who can spend a lot of time around them.
What’s the Best Dog Training Technique?
When investigating different dog training techniques, steer away from military-based training methods involving pinch or choke collars. It would be best to avoid trainers who practice inhumane behaviors like shocking, kicking, and other actions that might cause your dog pain or emotional distress.
Check the Trainer’s People Skills
A dog trainer is partially a teacher, a therapist, and a communication expert. However, most people become dog trainers because of their love for dogs and not because they’re great at working with people.
So, how do you know whether a trainer that works well with puppies or older dogs can train you?
The best way to assess a trainer’s people skills is by watching their classes and observing how they relate with dogs and other pet parents. Check whether the dogs and their owners appear relaxed and to be enjoying the experience.
Also, check how the trainer offers suggestions and how they resolve issues when they arise.
Check the Trainer’s Certification & Level of Experience
While the experience level might not determine your trainer’s ability to condition your dog, it’s an essential factor to consider. For instance, a less experienced person might have good skills for basic training classes.
New trainers also bring the energy, enthusiasm, and creativity that more experienced trainers might have lost.
Good dog trainers will always tell you what they can comfortably offer and can’t. Less-experienced players might not be the best choice for advanced training and solving serious problems that require behavior modification and experience.
However, ensure your dog training professional is certified to be accountable for some basic standards.
Consider the Cost and Convenience
Choose a dog training program that you can stick with for a long time. You can start with a single class, but many people need advanced training opportunities. While most people say you’ll get the level of services you pay for, the dog training sessions need to be affordable and convenient.
Hire Professional Dog Trainers in Virginia Beach, VA, and Surrounding Areas
K9Aholics is a leading dog training service helping pet owners in the Virginia Beach area transform their dogs into the perfect pet. We help your dogs deal with separation anxiety, aggression, crate training, and obedience skills.
Call us at (757) 210-7689 for a free phone consultation today! You can also visit us on the web to learn more information.