Dog Training Class FAQs

  • Introduction

    Dog trainers are professional instructors who use a wide range of training techniques to help dogs adapt to their environments, respond to cues and commands, and modify behavior patterns. Training methods include alpha dog dominance for aggressive dogs, positive reinforcement that's often utilized with puppies and younger dogs, relationship-based, and classic, conditional training.

    Schutzhund, the German word for “protection dog,” is a specialized type of instruction in which dogs are trained to attack on command, and it's commonly used in K9 Academies for police and security dogs. Depending on their skill sets and certifications, dog trainers may offer programs that incorporate several methods, or they may focus on a single method such as behavioral training, which focuses on changing dogs' behavior, or obedience training, where dogs are rewarded for following commands.
  • What is a dog trainer called?

    They’re referred to as dog trainers or behaviorists, depending on their skill sets and credentials. A dog trainer may refer to themselves as a canine behavioral specialist or a certified veterinary behaviorist.

  • What is the difference between a dog trainer and a behaviorist?

    Dog trainers and behaviorists practice the same profession, and many dog trainers refer to themselves as behaviorists. However, true animal behaviorists hold M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in animal behavior. The full title for an animal behaviorist is an Applied Animal Behaviorist or Certified Animal Behaviorist.

  • Does my dog need training?

    All dogs benefit from training, whether through their owners or a professional trainer. Owners can teach their dogs simple commands, and they can practice positive reinforcement techniques, such as providing treats when dogs follow basic instructions. Professional trainers are essential when dogs exhibit behavioral problems, such as aggression, excessive barking, and an inability to respond to basic commands.

  • What does dog training include?

    Some dog training classes focus on specific methods, such as obedience training or alpha training, while others offer a mix of multiple training techniques. Dog training activities can include brain games, clicker commands with positive reinforcement, relationship-based exercises between dogs and their owners, and socialization exercises.

  • Can you train a dog yourself?

    Dog owners can train their dogs themselves with the help of guidebooks and online tutorials that offer instruction in areas that include simple obedience commands and positive reinforcement techniques. When dogs are overly aggressive or display problematic behavior, such as biting or excessive barking, professional training can be extremely beneficial.

  • Is dog training easy?

    There are many methods of dog training. Teaching a dog simple commands is a fairly simple technique to learn, whether through guidebooks, online tutorials, or common sense. However, overly aggressive dogs often require professional training in which a trainer is certified and educated.

  • Should I get my dog professionally trained?

    Professional training is helpful for dogs of all ages and breeds, whether they need simple command training or more detailed programs to change aggressive behaviors, such as biting and jumping. Training of all levels is beneficial for dogs and their owners, as the animals use the skills they learn throughout their lifetimes.

  • How many training sessions does a dog need?

    The amount of training sessions a dog may need depends on the type of training desired by its owner. For example, doggie boot camps where dogs learn obedience techniques and behavior modification can take anywhere between one and four weeks, while puppy training courses add up to just one hour per week over a six-week period.

  • Do dogs like being trained?

    All dogs are different, and like humans, it can take them time to warm up to new people and environments. Good trainers know how to communicate with dogs, and they generally work hard to ensure their trainees are content and having fun during training sessions while learning new behavior techniques.

  • At what age should dogs start obedience training?

    As a general rule, dog owners should wait until their pets are at least six months of age before entering them into a formal obedience program. However, puppies are quick learners, and they can be taught simple commands at home starting at around six weeks.

  • How long does it take to house train a puppy?

    In general, it takes between four and six months to house train a puppy. Factors, such as bladder size and metabolism, may lead to extra training time, especially if the puppy is of a small breed and needs to use the bathroom frequently. A puppy's previous environment and emotional state may also hinder house training time.

  • Is it okay to let a puppy cry in their crate at night?

    Letting a puppy "cry it out" in their crate at night is generally not harmful; however, it's important for dog owners to make certain that their pet is crying to be let out, and not for other reasons, such as illness or injury. Crate training takes time, and it's always best to start out with short crating periods.

  • What\'s the hardest dog to train?

    While all dogs are trainable to an extent with the proper training and techniques, certain breeds are known to have a more difficult time following orders and instructions, thanks to their strong wills and independent senses. Challenging breeds include Greyhounds, Saint Bernards, Bullmastiffs, and Chesapeake Bay Retrievers.

  • Is a clicker good for dog training?

    Clicker training, also known as mark and reward training, works well to help dogs learn commands and positive behavioral traits. The method focuses on rewarding dogs with positive reinforcements, such as treats or petting, when commands are followed. Repetition is essential with clicker training, as it helps dogs remember that rewards follow good behaviors.

  • Are dog trainers worth it?

    Professional dog trainers can be extremely beneficial in helping dogs change negative behavior and learn to follow instructions. When home training isn't proving effective, many dog owners turn to professionals to improve their dog's behavior, which can help improve the overall relationship between pet and owner.

  • What makes a great dog trainer?

    Great dog trainers love what they do, and they communicate well with animals. Qualities that great dog trainers possess include patience and tolerance, listening skills, and an overall positive attitude. While credentials and education are also important, the manner in which a trainer can communicate with dogs in his or her care, as well as dog owners, is essential.

  • What kind of training do you need to be a dog trainer?

    Professional training is not required to become a dog trainer, but the more courses and credentials one obtains allows for increased knowledge and skill sets in overall dog training. Depending on the certifications desired, training courses include obedience, behavior modification, pet CPR, clicker training, and K9 training.

  • What qualifications do I need to be a dog trainer?

    Dog trainers are not required to get any type of certification; however, courses that award certifications help build client bases and ensure pet owners that their animals are in excellent hands. To become a Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge Assessed, one must pass a written exam and have 300 hours of documented experience in dog training over a three-year period.

  • What is the best dog training certification?

    There are several dog training certification programs available to help trainers expand their credentials. Certified Behavior Adjustment Training Instructor (CBATI) and Certified Dog Behavior Consultant (CDBC) are two of the highest certifications. Additional essential certifications include Basic Agility and Puppy Training.

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