Dog Training, Finding the Perfect Dog Trainer

How to determine whether a dog trainer or behaviorist can help you.

If your dog is displaying any type of a nervous aggression, barking, growling, snapping or lunging at people or other dogs. You must test the dog trainer or behaviorist you are considering hiring, to find out if they are any good at what they claim to be good at. Or they are just another ineffective dog trainer.

This simple test will determine if the trainer is very good, good or useless.

If the person you hire while they are working with your dog, cannot get your dog to stop the unwanted behavior. How can they possibly teach you to do it, if they can’t do it themselves.

The Dog Trainer/Behaviorist Test.

On the very first session, with the trainer working or handling your dog. You should be absolutely amazed how your dog reacts with the trainer / behaviorist. The trainer must be able to get your dog to pay attention to him or her, in that first session. If your dog “acts aggressive” with people, then people must be added into the equation. If the problem is with dogs, you must do the same.

The first session is a test of the trainers abilities, you do not attempt to socialize your dog with either people or dogs at this time. That will come later.

Analyzing the results of the trainer test

  1. Very Good – Within that first session your dog is listening and only occasionally will the trainer have to refocus your dogs attention back onto them.

  2. Good – The trainer may not accomplish getting your dog to totally listen to them in the first session. But they where able to get your dog to listen fifty percent of the time.
  3. Useless – Your dog acts no better with them as the dog does with you.

There are plenty of good trainers out there that can help you. Unfortunately there are many more that are not as good as they should be. You must be diligent in your search.

And do not be impressed by any dog trainers or behaviorists credentials (certified dog trainer, PhD behaviorist, DVM behaviorist). If they have credentials and they pass the test, excellent. If they have credentials and fail the test, what good are they . Do not believe any seemingly logical explanation they make for not handling your dog, or getting your dog to listen to them. People that are ineffective at their job, regardless of how nice a person they are often have excuses or reasons why something didn’t work. The proof is always, in the pudding.

Do not be embarrassed to test them, you must find out if they can help you or not.. Your dogs life may be hanging in the balance here, so test them.

The Spirit Dog

“It should be a very simple matter for any dog professional that knows the canine mind, to get your dog to listen and behave with them. Before they start teaching you how to do it.”

Some photo’s of our dogs and me.

I walk the walk

The Spirit Dog

Dog training talk is cheap

Dog training talk is cheap.

Protection Deprogramming by Guess Who ?

Protection Deprogramming by Guess Who ?

Kindred Spirits

Helping Wolf Rescues understand behavior better.

Another kindred spirit

According to some wolf experts, you could never pet a wolfs belly !

The Spirit Dog


Spirit Animal Sanctuary – 2539 Eat Road – Boonville, New York 13309


Copyright © 2008 a.s.papszycki

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  24. Alan, i think you’re right…had this experience yesterday at another trainers facility and client! I got the dog to do two things, calm down and lie down, before that the dog was biting the owner while she was attempting (!) to command him to do something. The other thing, when i commanded the dog to come to me, he responded immediately, i guess at least in that context/situation I must have scored a “very good”

    And i happen to be certified in dog behavior! Also, nice blog, looks like you do nice work.

    joyce kesling, CDBC

  25. You should have stopped at one link.

  26. Getting a dog trainer is a big decision. You have some really good points and I like how you put it bluntly on the fact that if they can’t get your dog to stop those unwanted behaviors, then how on earth will they be able to teach you how to do this!

    Check out our website for another perspective on tips for finding the right dog trainer…

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  29. Hi M , hope you’ve been well.

    I don’t know. The most likely reason is, I’m the only one teaching this stuff. And from teaching people dog behavior for so long, I know a lot of dog owners just don’t buy into the currently accepted teachings on canine behavior. And they shouldn’t, considering a significant portion of the information is inaccurate.

    Now, I’m not an SEO guy, but I do have some thoughts on your site. If your interested in what’s probably useless advice, email me and I’ll tell you what I think.


  30. p.s. how in the heck are you getting such great hits?? share the secret will ya…lol

  31. I completely agree….but I would be surprised at a dog growling no matter how fearful of his owner. Unless the dog is a newer family addition or rescue. A dog peeing is more what I have seen when some idiot is throwing a tantrum. Of course i do not deal with any dog that growls, i have kids so i do not take chances. We raise our pets from youngsters!!
    Great article…

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