Whether you have a new puppy or your dog is a bit older, you face a big decision of whether to try and train your dog on your own or hire a professional trainer.
Either way, you should make sure your dog receives training. Otherwise, there’s the risk of your dog biting another animal or even a person, being disruptive to your life, and perhaps not being a good fit with your family.
The earlier you train your dog or get training, the happier everyone in your family is likely to be.
So is it something you can do on your own, or are you better off hiring someone?
The following are considerations to keep in mind as you decide…
The Training You Can Do On Your Own
There are certain parts of your dog’s training that you may be able to do on your own successfully. Research beforehand, and read as much as you can so that you’re prepared.
Housetraining, you may be able to do yourself.
Housetraining should be the first thing you teach your dog. When you’re housetraining your dog, you need to be consistent and ready to put in work, because diligence is required.
Once you’ve started the house-training process, if you start to notice red flags, such as peeing to express submissiveness, then you might want to consult a professional.
Leash training is something else you can work with your dog on.
Most places have leash laws, and you want to teach your dog how to walk beside you the right way on a leash.
You can work with your dog on simple commands likely without the help of a trainer, such as sit, come, down, and stay.
Signs You Need a Trainer
Some situations may be unique to your dog that should serve as an indicator it’s time to hire a trainer.
Some of the signs you need a trainer for your dog include:
— Growling or nipping: Growing and nipping are early signs of aggression in a dog. Many serious dog bites come from warning growls, and then the situation turns into a full attack. Your dog needs to learn the behavior is not accepted, and hiring a trainer can help reduce the potential that your dog could be a risk to others in the future.
— Door bolting: If your dog often runs outside when the door opens, it can be a risk to your dog. A trainer can help with this issue because your dog should know that they need to stay inside unless you tell them otherwise.
— Jumping: Excited dogs show their love through jumping, but it can lead to injuries and damage in your home. A trainer can work with a dog who jumps.
— Possessiveness: If your dog guards objects and tries to growl or bite when someone approaches what they see as theirs, a trainer may be able to remedy the problem.
What Are the Benefits of Professional Training?
Even if you think you can do it on your own, there are undoubtedly benefits of getting professional training for your dog.
If you do class-based training, it lets your dog get socialized and used to be around other dogs and people. Then, when you take your dog to the park or other places, they’re going to be able to behave properly.
If you aren’t a professional dog trainer, even if you’re well-intentioned, you might inadvertently teach your dog bad behavior. Your dog may get frustrated also if you try to do too much at one time. If you work with a professional trainer from the start, there will be fewer bad behaviors that person has to work on reversing.
A trainer can also go from the basics to more advanced things such as agility or learning tricks. Dogs can even learn how to be therapy dogs when working with a trainer.
A trainer can work with you as a pet owner to help you understand how your behavior and cues affect your dog too.
Having a dog is a big responsibility. You want a dog who has good behavior, understands commands and is never a risk to the people around them. Working with a trainer can help you achieve these goals, even if you start with the basics on your own.
A trainer can build on anything you teach your dog, and your dog is guaranteed to be a great fit for your family.