- Your dog's general temperament which will encompass many things. Think of whether you have learned that your dog is fearful, confident, shy, bold, friendly, leery, reactive, mellow, and so on. Think of the specific situations (or general situations) you may see these things play out.
- Do you or your dog have any food allergies or other allergies that may interfere with some forms of training?
- Is your dog pretty easy in most everyday situations or are there some situations that are cause for concern?
- How old is your dog or puppy? Puppy training is almost always much different than training a more mature adult dog.
- How healthy is your dog? Do they have any physical disabilities or problems that may interfere with some methods of training?
- How healthy are you, the dog owner? Do you have any physical disabilities or other problems that may interfere with some methods of training?
- What are your goals with your dog? Think of such things like if you want an obedient companion, a sports dog (obedience, agility, protection sports), an outdoor adventure companion, a companion your whole family can enjoy, stopping your dog from aggression issues, and so on.
- Are your goals with your dog realistic as far as matching their temperament or where they are today? In other words, are there things that need to be done first?
- Think about budget, but also realize that you get what you pay for. It may be more to your advantage to really invest in your dog training if you have the money or the need to get something under control. Or maybe, you just really want to understand a lot about training going forward.
- What kind of time can you really invest in the training? It may be easier on you to have a trainer start your dog off first, and then train the dog owner later, depending on the situation.
Analyzing these things before starting to pick out a training program can really help you whittle down your choices and options. Every dog and owner team is different and has different needs and lifestyles. While some dog training may be similar somewhat across the board, generally there are tweaks and accommodations for the different needs of the individual team. There may be one trainer that can customize their training to your needs, or there may be a trainer who trains in a special niche that speaks to you and your needs.
What are the answers to the above items for you and your dog? In order to get the best training for your team, it takes more work than just selecting the dog trainer closest to you that is the cheapest. Remember, this is going to be your cherished canine companion for the rest of their lives. Invest in making that the most enjoyable and fulfilling relationship for the both of you that it can be.
Mannerly Mutts is a dog training company in York Maine. Call or e-mail us with your dog training needs.