Why Hire a Certified Professional?
From celebrity trainers to veterinary behaviorists, there is a broad spectrum of expertise in the field of applied dog behavior. It can certainly be confusing to guardians, who are just looking to help their dogs reach their full potential.
The dog training industry is not regulated in any way. Technically anyone can market themselves as a trainer or "behaviourist" and take your money in exchange for working with your dog. This is problematic because many unqualified individuals attempt to work with dogs based on “intuition”, “a special gift they have”, or something they watched on TV (where entertainment is the top priority). If your dog has a broken leg you go to a Veterinarian because you know they have gone through rigorous schooling and practice to be able to properly help your dog by following regulated veterinary medical standards, it should be no different for dog training and behaviour work. What a dog trainer or consultant does and says when working with you and your dog is going to impact both your lives. You want to be sure you aren’t going to a quack who does not possess trustworthy credentials.
It is critical to look for a certified professional who is educated and trained in the methods you want to use with your dog.
There are a multitude of certifications out there so I recommend looking into the details behind someone’s designation to be fully informed about how you can expect them to work with your dog and when in doubt, ASK!
Clients have a right to know what methods and/or equipment will be used with their dog, and how exactly the person they hire will communicate to their dog when they've done something right or done something wrong.
The evidence is clear that we do not need to hurt, frighten, or “dominate” our dogs in order to get the behaviour we would like to see from them - it’s actually counterproductive if you wish to have a close relationship.
When it comes to puppies, what Fido experiences during the first 20 weeks of life will lay the foundation for their future behaviour, it’s not worth the risk to hire someone who has not studied and been tested on the most up to date knowledge and methods. Within this time frame Fido will go through several developmental stages, including a sensitive socialization period. Curiosity will be at its peak during this time, specifically from approximately 6 to 16 weeks of age, and not just WHAT they experience, but HOW they experience it, will dictate what gets catalogued in their mind as either safe or dangerous in the world. The idiom “curiosity killed the cat” becomes a rule to live by as Fido ages – better to be cautious of that which has not been marked as safe in my mind because well…
Look at what happened to that cat.
Taking advantage of this precious time in Fido’s life and exposing them to the human world so that we can grow their confidence and build strong desirable human-pleasing habits does not come without risk to be sure. Fido is still a baby during this time and health wise they will not have been fully vaccinated to protect against disease. Let Raising Fido Dog Training show you how to capitalize on this critical time in your dog’s life with both health and psychological safety being top priority.