For many, it seemed like a heartwarming idea: rescuing a pup from the local shelter to help battle loneliness during the coronavirus quarantine. From the minute the dog came home, they could do no wrong- until, for some owners: shoes were chewed on, socks went missing, carpets were stained, and furniture became glorified dog beds. Sometimes, other unexpected behaviors came through, like pulling on the leash, baring teeth over scraps, or barking
Now is a good time for pet owners to find a trainer to help work through issues they and the dog may be experiencing. For starters, consider the type of training that will work best. For example, if most of the ill-gotten behaviors are happening within the home, then an in-home consultation is worth looking into. If behaviors such as leash pulling or poor social skills happen while outside the home, then perhaps an in-person class is suitable, only if available.
According to certified dog trainers, look for a professional who uses reward-based training to teach and modify behavior. Another resource is the American Kennel Club. Before contacting someone, determine what is triggering the dog’s behavior. Then, research trainers who are knowledgeable about behavior, learning theory, canine communication, and mechanics. Look for training certification initials from the following organizations: Certification Councils for Professional Dog Trainers, International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, and Pet Professional Accreditation Board. Research certified Canadian trainers Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers Directory.
Ask friends, family, and your veterinarian for referrals, and check the BBB directory to find professional dog trainers near you.
Then, set up an interview with the trainer to ask questions regarding their training ethics, rates, insurance, and methodology. Request proof of the most current certifications and what types of cases they’ve worked with before your situation. Many trainers are offering consultations and training online because of coronavirus restrictions. If you’re looking for a furry friend, read BBB’s tips on how to avoid puppy scams or are in need of a dog sitter, find advice on a reliable service.
If you’re a certified dog trainer, become a BBB Accredited Business.
If you’ve been the victim of a scam, report your experience to BBB Scam Tracker. Your report can help others to stay informed and protected!