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Choosing a dog professional to help you

21/11/2022 - Editorial and opinion


“Lots of people have recommended you to us!” 💚

Finding someone to help you can be hard. There are lots of things that might influence your decision:

🐾 Recommendations
🐾 Experience
🐾 Qualifications
🐾 Easy to get to
🐾 Cost

And more.

I had a message from someone last week starting with the words ...

“Lots of people have recommended you to us!” That’s a great start, isn’t it! My aim is always to inspire owners and to create happy dogs. When I get such great recommendations I know I am doing something right 😊

Here are my top tips to find the right person to help you –

Find a trainer you love. Ask for recommendations, talk to a few, look through their websites, work out whether they are the right person to help you and your dog. They should be kind to you and your dog. They should work with you to help you help your dog.

Invest in your dog. Free training that you can grab online or on the TV can be okay, but it is often unrealistic. A great trainer is better than a pile of out of date books or free YouTube videos that don’t really get to the point of the help you need.

Be ready to travel. If the best trainer is further away and you are able to travel to them, then do it!

Book early. Those good trainers are more likely be booked up way in advance. That said, spaces on a course starting in a few days does not mean a bad trainer, they may have just opened up spaces, had a cancellation, be new to the area, have a new venue and lots of other reasons.

Ask questions! A group class should have enough time for you to ask questions and get some personal advice not just marching through a list of tests. Very often that advice might apply to others in the class anyway. If you are at a 1 to 1, think beforehand what you want to get out of it and ensure you don’t get side-tracked.

Ask your trainer for advice on extra study and next steps. That could be a book recommendation or podcast to listen to. They will have curated that information already and should be able to point you in the right direction.

Ask for help. If you are having issues outside the scope of a class, talk to your trainer about some 1 to 1 help. If they can’t help you, they should have a good network and know someone who can.

Here's the thing from behind the scenes that is not at the forefront of most potential client's minds.

For me working together with other like-minded dog professionals is essential. I am often asked for recommendations. I have a great network of people that I trust and I am happy to pass on details.

I recommend others almost every working day.

Whether that be because I am full, or they have different skills, or they offer something different to me, or they are a better fit.

💚 If you are stuck in training confusion, pop me a message and let’s chat. If I can’t help you, I will likely know someone who can 💚