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"How to Find a Trustworthy Dog Trainer: Top Tips and Advice"

Finding the right dog trainer can be a daunting task, especially with the abundance of options out there. But did you know that the dog training industry in the UK isn't regulated?

That's right – anyone can wake up one morning and claim to be a dog trainer, even without the proper qualifications.

Why Regulation Matters

Without regulation, there's no assurance that the person you're trusting with your furry friend's training is genuinely qualified. This can lead to ineffective methods or, worse, techniques that could harm your beloved pet. This includes the huge amount of unqualified and quite frankly dangerous social media dog 'trainers' out there.

Take a moment to consider the person you're listening to. Whilst they might be skilled at marketing themselves, ask yourself: are they genuinely a dog trainer, or are they primarily a social media influencer?

Remember, a strong social media presence doesn't necessarily equate to expertise in dog training. It's essential to look beyond the flashy exterior and assess whether the individual has the qualifications and experience to provide reliable advice.

When it comes to choosing a dog trainer, prioritise substance over style. Seek out professionals with genuine credentials and a proven track record of success. Don't be swayed by slick marketing tactics; instead, focus on finding someone who truly understands canine behaviour and employs ethical training methods.

By being discerning consumers of information, we can ensure that we're getting guidance from credible sources who have the best interests of our furry friends at heart. So, before you take advice from a social media influencer, take the time to verify their expertise. Your dog deserves nothing less!

Protecting Your Pup: What You Can Do?

Look for certifications from respected organizations such as the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) UK, the Institute of Modern Dog Trainers (IMDT), or the Animal Behaviour and Training Council (ABTC). These organisations offer externally accredited qualifications to ensure that their standards are up to scratch.

Ask for references and testimonials from past clients.

Interview potential trainers to understand their methods and philosophy.

Trust your instincts – if something feels off, it probably is.

Beware of Red Flags

Watch out for trainers who promise quick fixes or use harsh methods. Put slip leads, choke chains, e-collars and prong collars where they belong - in the bin.

Red flag words and phrases:-

  • Alpha/dominance/ pack theory (Its not a thing and was disproved decades ago)

  • "Communicate through the lead"

  • Promising results / "guaranteed success"

  • They use 'corrections'

  • Say you need to be 'Assertive'

Effective training takes time, patience, and positive reinforcement.

Ethical dog trainers are likely to be happy to tell you about their methods and qualifications.

Final Thoughts

Your dog deserves the best, so don't settle for anything less. By being vigilant and doing your research, you can find a qualified and ethical trainer who will help you build a strong bond with your furry companion.

Dr. Caroline Rees

PhD animal behaviour

Qualified (IMDT) Institute of Modern Dog Trainers - Dog Trainer

Share this post to spread awareness and help fellow dog owners make informed decisions! 🐶💬 #drcarolinecanineconsultant #dogdraining #UKDogOwners #ethicaldogtraining

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