A Dog Trainer Secret

I want to tell you a secret. Only, it’s not really a secret. Every dog trainer knows it, they just don’t talk about it.

When looking at different dog trainer’s websites, you’ll see them talking about the number of commands they teach: 8 Commands, 14 Commands, Unlimited Commands! That’s because dog trainers traditionally focus on teaching dogs commands like sit, stay, lie down, come, and walking on leash. As if 14 commands is better than 8.

Here’s the secret.

While commands are important for dogs to know, they may not be helpful to you in the long run. What is important, is how your dog behaves. No one ever took their dog to the shelter because the dog didn’t know how to “sit.” But millions of dogs are surrendered for biting the hand that feeds them, chewing the furniture, barking, soiling in the house…..

If you asked a hundred dog owners “does your dog know how to sit?” most of them would say, “yes.” Almost every dog would sit if they were alone in the kitchen and the owner held up a bowlful of food, but how many dogs would sit when visitors are arriving and two other dogs are leaping and barking at the door? The right question isn’t does your dog “know” the sit signal, its how reliable is his response under a variety of circumstances.

I train a bit differently.

I teach a handful of core exercises where the dog learns that focusing on you and behaving politely are fun. Variations of the same exercises are added based on the needs of the owner. These core exercises and their variations can be used in many types of situations to keep your dog out of trouble and behaving well. Rather than approaching the problem of cat distractions, bike distractions, and other distractions like separate problems with completely different solutions, we teach solutions that can be used in many situations. This global approach allows owners and their pets to improve incredibly fast and enjoy each others company.

The purpose of dog training is not just about obedience commands, but correcting behavior issues, things like barking, lunging, jumping, and unruliness. I understand the way dogs think and why they behave the way they do. So I can resolve behavior problems at their root cause.

Sometimes the smallest things make the biggest differences in dog behavior. Getting to the heart of a matter, making simple changes, and everyone–humans and dog–are able to live happily and peacefully. As a dog trainer and behavior consultant, it’s very gratifying and makes this job worthwhile.

I’d like to help you with your dog problems, too. Call me at 772-284-9011 for a short phone consultation and together we’ll figure out the best way to do that.

Cathy Daugaard