Questions to ask a Qualified Dog Trainer
February 21, 2022
Reactive Dog Walking

Qualified Dog Trainer  Edinburgh

I am a qualified dog trainer and behaviourist, in my 5 years of working with dogs I have never stopped learning and I don’t intend to. The truth is, the dog training industry is unregulated and there are a number of Professional Bodies out there that accredit people, some just with a pay now button on the website and nothing else. In this blog post I will help you help your dog by asking the right questions to verify a dog trainer is a professional with industry recognised qualifications.

Book a FREE call with me here to chat about your current training and behaviour problems.

I am not actually accredited with anyone, I won’t be until there is ONE uniform standard I can hold myself accountable too. In the meantime I am very much qualified to do my job.

Reactive Dogs Specialist – working with Foreign Rescue Dogs

7 Canine Questions to ask a Dog Trainer

When looking for a dog trainer to work with you should be asking these questions…

  1. What are their methods – if they answer anything other then reward based training, run for the hills.
  2. How will they help you with the problems you have – don’t expect a detailed answer they won’t give it for free. But they should be able to explain how’d they help and why it will work
  3. A good trainer will ask you a lot of questions too – The more questions I ask about the problem the better I know if I am the right person to help. Someone who says yes I can help when you say your dog barks, is in it for the money.
  4. How quickly can they fix your problem – this is actually a trick question. In dog training there no quick fixes, sure some trainers can ‘fix’ your problem in an instant but it you want a solution that is long term and not a temporary fix then it will take time. How quick depends on you, your dog and many other factors.
  5. Will they help you too? When working with a dog who is reactive/nervous/anxious or a rescue the chances are the human is also stressed and anxious. A HUGE part of dog training is helping the owner deal with their feelings and worries. Their emotional state does have a direct impact on the dog, if the trainer can not address that then the training won’t be successful.
  6. What experience have they had with similar dogs – The trainer should be able to tell you about past clients and in some case point you in the direction of a review or recommendation from that owner.
  7. Can you speak with them before you book? – In my opinion its always best to have an actual phone call with your potential trainer, it helps you get a feel for the person on the end of the line. What happens if you sign up for training and then you don’t gel with them..

This is by no means exhaustive, you should be asking all the questions you want and need to, to ensure the person you hire is the right one for you and your dog.

In the Collins Dictionary ‘Qualified’ means having the abilities, qualities, attributes, etc, necessary to perform a particular job or task.

So let me take you through why I feel very proud to refer to myself as a qualified canine and dog behaviour specialist in training rescue and reactive dogs:

questions for a qualified dog trainer(2)

Diploma in Holistic Canine Behaviour by Canine Principles

This allows me to be called a Behaviourist and this forms the basis of ALL my dog training consults. I am never just there to ‘fix’ a behaviour problem. I am there to fully and completely understand your dogs day to day life. That holds the clues for everything so I can work out a bespoke training plan.

Dynamic Dog Practitioner with Distinction

Fully able to assess a dogs posture and gait, to pick up on abnormalities. Hardly anyone knows how a dogs is supposed to move and what it means when a dog makes changes to their gaits. I am the first practitioner in Scotland and have already helped dogs who’ve been dismissed by Vets as either Anxious or ‘Just’ needs training.

Diploma in Holistic Canine Care & Therapy

Understanding the alternative ways we can help and support our dogs alongside traditional Veterinary care.

Diploma in Canine Communication accredited by New Skills Academy

If you can’t read a dogs body language and understand what they are saying, you have no right to work with a dog. Yet it amazes me how many dog professionals can’t understand when a dog is scared, anxious, stressed, instead choosing to label the dog as stubborn.

Re-framing Dog Reactivity with Janet Findly

An in depth course looking at all aspects of reactivity, how to handle it, help the dog and support the owner. Reactivity it a sensitive topic and you can easily make a dog worse if you don’t know what you’re doing. So I have studied with Expert in the field Janet Findly.

Understanding Romanian Rescue Dogs with Meesh Masters

Foreign rescue dogs may look like your typical dog, but they are anything but typical. Its takes real understanding of these internationally relocated dogs to be able to help and support them. You can’t just rush in with standard dog training, it doesn’t work with them. I have learned and continue to learn from the UK expert Meesh Masters, I am one of her recommended Pro’s and first Affiliate.

Canine School of Science Behaviour Bible – Behaviour Qualification

Continuing Studies with Canine School of Science Behaviour Bible – Behaviour Qualification after 3 years. This is a more intensive Behaviour course to my earlier Diploma – The reason I am doing it, there is always more to learn.

Self Study – I don’t even know where to begin with my continuing self study, I am forever learning from books, industry leaders, fellow trainers and behaviourists and of course the dogs I work with.

Qualified Professional Dog Trainer Edinburgh

As a Professional trainer and behaviourist, its important to stay up to date with new developments, recognize your own limits and know when to ask for help. I have taken on several cases where the owners have had other trainers out to help them and the advice given has been nothing short of Dangerous for the dog and the owner.

FREE Dog Training Consultation

You can book a free call with me here to chat about your current training and behaviour problems.

Further Reading

How to Change Your Reactive Dogs Behaviour

How to Change Your Reactive Dogs Behaviour

Edinburgh Dog Behaviour - Reactive Dogs Reactivity happens for a reason. True Story, reactivity is never your dog being naughty its an important bit of information your dog is giving and it also gives your dog something that they need in that moment. Maybe their...

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How To Help Your Reactive Dog

How To Help Your Reactive Dog

Reactive Dog Training Edinburgh Tips To Help Your Dog Living and working in Leith, Edinburgh is hard work when you have a reactive and anxious dog, I should know I live with my own barking lunctic Ally in the heart of Leith. Ally is a 3 year old, Old English Sheepdog...

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Dynamic Dog Case Study: Brodie

Dynamic Dog Case Study: Brodie

The problem isn't always straight forward, check out Brodie's Red Herrings. Brodie is a very handsome and playful Old English Sheepdog, his owners reached out to me over problems they were having, with Brodie growling and barking towards his family in the home, at...

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Dynamic Dog Case Study: Puka

Dynamic Dog Case Study: Puka

The Vet Doesn't Always Know It All...... Puka(1) I first met Puka when I had be called in to help with his brother Albi's reactivity and after inital work put in place, we discovered that Puka and Albi were having fights. The fights were in part down to one or the...

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