BBB Tip: How to Find a Good Dog Trainer

For many, it seems like a heartwarming idea: rescuing a pup from the local shelter or getting a dog from a reputable breeder. Then, reality hits: shoes are chewed, socks go missing, carpets are stained, and furniture is covered in fur. Sometimes, other unexpected behaviors come through, like pulling on the leash, baring teeth over scraps, or barking incessantly.

Dog owners need 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 leash pulling or poor social skills happen while outside the home, then perhaps an in-person class is suitable, 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 TrainersInternational 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 trainings 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.

Check out BBB’s Pet HQ and Pet Scams page.

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!

Sign up for BBB Scam Alerts

Read more about BBB Accreditation Standards and BBB Standards for Trust.


Information courtesy of the Better Business Bureau