Am I the right trainer for you? Are you the right client for me?
In order to be successful at transforming your dog’s behavior, it is important for you to be familiar with my philosophy and the training techniques I use. I make information readily available to all my clients (and non-clients) on my website. I want you to be comfortable with my training tools and just as excited to train with the dogs as I am.
Here are some qualities in a client that I feel are absolutely necessary for success:
• I want you to recognize that there’s a problem. You’re not the problem, but there is a problem. Something you’re doing is contributing to that problem, and you’re going to have to make some changes if you want to get different results.
• I need you to be 100% comfortable with my training techniques. You should be open to a balanced training approach. Yes, we will use praise but we will also correct bad behavior. Which brings me to my next point…
• With a lot of my clients I tell them to put a 30 to 60 day hold on over-praise. That doesn’t mean you can never praise your dog, but I’m talking about over praising your dog. It’s not working. If giving your dog verbal praise, physical praise and food praise was working, you wouldn’t be hiring me. There’s plenty of time for praise and to me, the best reward is inclusion.
• I need you to follow up with 100% of my training program. I have a training system that works and a philosophy of training that works. I’m looking for people that are going to take my advice, my techniques, my tools and run with it.
• I’m looking for clients that are going to follow through with their weekly homework. The concept that we’re going to do this an hour a week and you’re going to get results is not going to work.
• I want to make sure that you’re going to follow through with my household management program. This can be a tricky one for people. The dog might have to get off of the bed, the dog might have to get off the furniture, you might have to start crating your dog at night, there’s a reason that I’m going to make these suggestions. I want your dog to be happy and fulfilled while cohabiting with your family.
• Just like people, dogs need daily exercise. I need all of my clients to commit to a daily exercise routine. That doesn’t mean just letting your dog in the back yard. That means structured walks and possibly treadmill work. Exercise is key to the success of my training.
• I need the whole family on board with everything. Dogs are influenced by everyone around them so I need everybody to be on board with everything…my tools, my techniques, my philosophy, the exercise, the household management.
To me, dog training is not a series of commands rewarded by a treat. Dog training is a lifestyle, rewarded by inclusion in our lives.