A few weeks ago, The Jaded Dog Trainer covered what professional dog trainers shouldn’t tell their clients to ensure they don’t lose customers.
Lucky for all the K9 handlers out there, our "favorite dog trainer" is back to give you a few more tips on how to properly answer some common questions without coming across as a jerk.
How Long Does Dog Training Take?
The first question you might get from a new owner is how many sessions it’ll take to thoroughly train their dog. The wrong answer is that it depends on how bad of an owner the person is.
The correct answer is that the genetic potential of the dog and the amount of time the owner can commit to training both factor into how many training sessions the dog needs.
Additionally, the type of training you’re trying to accomplish also plays a role in the length of time everyone needs to spend with the dog. It goes without saying that obedience training for a house pet takes much less time than bite training for a military or police K9.
Why Is My Dog Afraid of Training?
Some dogs take to training much faster than others (which also helps speed up the training process). But other dogs can take longer to get used to working with a dog trainer. They might even get scared and hide behind their owner when a dog trainer comes around.
If your client’s dog acts frightened or is hesitant to train, don’t tell the owner that their dog is a basket case and that it will take years to do anything useful.
Let your client know that their dog is very environmentally aware of their surroundings.
Reputable dog trainers can overcome working with a frightened dog by utilizing the right training methods and giving them tasty dog training treats as a reward for good behavior.
Does My Dog Need a Break from Training?
If the owner is frustrated that their dog isn’t learning any new skills during the training session, don’t tell the client to go sit in their car and think about how bad they are at owning a dog!
Dogs, especially young puppies, can’t start out with long training sessions. They just don’t have the attention span to go more than a few minutes at a time without stopping to relax and refocus.
You’ll want to gently let the owner know that you’re going to take a quick break from training to assess everything, and then we’ll come back to try again.
One handy piece of equipment we use to get dogs to focus is the KLIMB Professional Grade Platform. If you’ve recently had trouble getting your clients’ dogs to focus, the KLIMB platform is just what you need to get the dogs back in the right mindset to train.
Why Does My Dog Work Better for You?
Inexperienced owners are also bound to be frustrated when their dog behaves and listens perfectly when their professional trainer comes around for a session but then reverts to their same old poor behavior once the trainer leaves.
Don't tell the client that they're simply a bad dog handler. Even though that may be the case, you should tell the owner that you have years of experience in professional dog training.
Additionally, professional dog trainers are able to establish a strong working relationship with their clients' dogs. When a trainer comes around, dogs understand that it's time to listen and learn new skills.
At the same time, you need to tell the client that dog training can’t just occur with a professional. There’s plenty of work owners need to do in between training sessions to teach their dogs the skills they need to succeed.
My Dog Has No Energy
If you get an owner who asks why their dog doesn’t have enough energy to do what they want the dog to do, don’t tell them that their dog is just lazy and essentially useless.
Instead, reassure the owner that the dog will be a great family dog (even if they are more of a couch potato). It’s also important to tell them that some dogs are bred to have more energy than others.
Let your client know that if their dog has a ton of natural energy, like a Siberian Husky, they’ll need to give the dog plenty of exercise.
We carry a wide range of dog toys designed to give K9s all the toys they need to work out their energy.
Shop Ray Allen for All of K9 Trainer Gear
Whether you’re a new dog owner or someone with as much experience as The Jaded Dog Trainer, be sure to buy all of your dog gear from Ray Allen Manufacturing.