Trainers & Training Resources
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Benefits of Positive Training
Lucky Dog Animal Rescue strongly believes in Positive Training, and we encourage all dog owners to educate themselves about the different methods of dog training before choosing a trainer or a training program.
What is Positive Training?
Positive training rewards dogs with treats, praise and play rather than punishment. Think of it as the “carrot” approach to training your dog – rather than using the “stick.” Positive training has proven to be more effective as well as less stressful for both owner and dog than punishment-based training.
The Humane Society of the US, the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior, and the Association of Pet Dog Trainers all promote positive dog training as the most effective and humane way to train dogs.
- Positive methods, unlike harsher ones, are not known to create fear or anxiety issues in dogs. Dogs comply because they enjoy the training – not because they are afraid.
- Positive trainers look for the root of a behavior problem, rather than just suppressing a behavior and taking the risk it will re-emerge later.
- Training is based on how dogs learn. Strength isn’t required to train a dog.
- Positive training allows dogs to use their brains during training. Mental stimulation is as important as physical exercise to the welfare of a dog.
- Dogs learn to trust their owners. While this is important for all dogs, it is particularly important for shelter and rescue dogs.
- Positive training is unlikely to cause injury to people or animals.
- Positive training includes management methods that permit dog owners to set their dogs up for success – for example, no-pull harnesses to help with polite leash walking, baby gates to separate dogs from visiting children, and interactive toys to help occupy and provide mental stimulation for dogs.
Picking a Trainer
Picking a trainer is a very personal decision as you need to find a person and program that suits you and your pup! However, there are certain minimum qualifications any dog trainer should have. Be careful: some organizations, like the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (A.P.D.T.) allow individuals to become “full members” just by paying dues. Being a “full member” of APDT does not mean that person is a certified dog trainer – only being a “Professional” member does.
What you really need to look for is the certification the individual trainer holds. A trainer’s certification should be prominent in all promotional materials. Although certifications are not mandatory for someone to begin training, they do indicate that a trainer has dedicated a certain amount of time and preparation to their training business. Not all training certifications are the same so, if you don’t recognize the certification, be sure to ask what education a particular trainer has, how long they have been training dogs, and what references they have in the dog community. (A reference from the owner of a doggie daycare who has experience with multiple trainers should carry much more weight than a reference from a new dog owner who has no point of comparison.) Some certifications which we recommend include:
- ACAAB (Animal Behavior Society)
- CPDT-KA (Certification Council for Pet Dog Trainers)
- CDBC (International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants)
- CAAB (Animal Behavior Society)
- CABC (International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants)
- CCAB (Association for the Study of Animal Behavior)
- DACVB (American College of Veterinary Behaviorists)
Your Dog’s Friend also provides a great list of positive trainers in the DC metro area. Although we haven’t had the opportunity to work with them, we trust the judgment of Your Dog’s Friend! http://www.yourdogsfriend.info/Positive-Trainers.html
Lucky Dog works with and highly recommends the following trainers. Be sure to ask them about discounts for adopted Lucky Dogs!
(An * next to a trainer's name denotes a positive trainer.)
Mica Dog Training is committed to helping dog and their owners, positively and practically. We offer both private sessions and group classes, so we can accommodate any schedule and training challenge. Whether you’re looking to start your puppy off on the right paw, brush up on some basics with your adult dog, tackle a behavior problem or progress to more advanced training levels, we’re here to help make training fun and successful.
Group classes are available in Chantilly, Ashburn and Lovettsville and private in-home training is offered in Loudoun County and parts of Fairfax County.
Nancy is a Certified Professional Dog Trainer, OPERATION SOCIALIZATION Certified Trainer, Approved Canine Good Cititzen Evaluator and professional member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers.
Spot On Dog Training is focused on giving you the tools you need to create a strong foundation that will allow you to establish and maintain a happy and healthy relationship between you and your dog. They accomplish this through positive reinforcement training. Spot On Training stands for positive based training with evidence based outcomes. Heather is a member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers and is a certified trainer through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers.
Fur-Get Me Not is committed to teaching people how to train their dogs using positive training methods based in science, with a focus on learning theory and animal behavior.
They are on the forefront of the latest information pertaining to positive dog training. Their goal is to teach people in a fun and inspiring way how to motivate dogs to perform wanted behaviors. Their teaching involves no force or coercion. All lead trainers are Certified Professional Dog Trainers (CPDT), ensuring students are guided by committed and skilled professionals. While the classes are always led by certified trainers, assistants and apprentices support the lead instructor during class. Fur-Get Me Not offers puppy and group classes via a teaching structure called Levels training. Levels allow each student to attend class at their own pace. The same classes are offered a couple of times a week, giving ultimate flexibility to attend at different days or multiple times each week if so desired. For those wanting certification, they conduct the Canine Good Citizen test several times a year. In addition they provide private training options in your home. They can assist you with anything from general obedience training sessions to targeting specific behavior problems. Please visit their website for more information. They are happy to work with clients who have specific requests as well. Fur-Get Me Not also offers daycare, dog walking, pet sitting and boarding. The knowledge of dog behavior and positive training approach is incorporated in every aspect of their business.
Free phone consult ($45 value) offered to new adopters within the first 30 days of adoption. Please refer to coupon in the adoption packet.
KissAble Canine, LLC provides pet owners a fun and effective solution for their dog obedience needs. Head trainer, Lisa Tudor, holds her Certified Professional Dog Trainer certificate and specializes in understanding dog behavior. She is a professional member of the APDT (Association of Pet Dog Trainers), an AKC Canine Good Citizen evaluator, a Mentor Trainer for the Animal Behavior College and certified in Pet First Aid through the American Red Cross. KissAble Canine offers in-home, private training, behavior modification and family friendly workshops!
Certified Professional Dog Trainer/Knowledge Assessed
Associate Member, IAABC
CGC Evaluator #56306
Kinga's K-9s provides at-home behavioral training and modification services in the D.C. metropolitan area. Private sessions are held at the client's home and other environments where the dog is exhibiting issues. Discount available for rescued dogs.
Michelle Yue*, CPDT-KA
A dog lover first, and a dog trainer second, Jean Robertson knows from first-hand experience the difference dog training makes in the relationship between dogs and humans. Well trained dogs are happy, secure dogs. Jean offers in-home private basic obedience training and techniques for the effective solving of problem behaviors. Jean uses only positive based training, which works with your dog's motivation and does not rely on punishment. Her mission is to help you and your dog enjoy many happy years together.
Toni attended college majoring in biology and continued her studies in graduate school focusing on animal sciences. She taught high school Biology for 8 years during which time she volunteered at her veterinarian in Adams Morgan. Toni also organized a community service group with her students to volunteer at the Washington Animal Rescue League (WARL). While volunteering she learned that behavior problems are the #1 reason dogs are euthanized. She decided the best way to help was to educate families and their pets to prevent more loss of life. Toni is an Animal Behavior College graduate and is finally able to fulfill her passion for working with dogs.
One of a Kind K9 blends state-of-the-art technology and expert K9 knowledge to enhance your furry friend's wellness and instill good behavior. Beyond walks and fitness, beyond training and pet sitting, we partner with you to ensure your K9 leads a healthy and happy life.
Our multi-certified trainers bring years of experience to bear on your K9's development, and will design training programs specifically suited to your K9's personality and your family's needs. We'll meet with you to discuss and identify problem areas. Then we'll customize a program that curbs unwanted behaviors and enforces new, ideal ones. You'll learn how to read your pet's body language and interact in ways that build desired behaviors. That perfect K9 you envisioned is just a few training sessions away.
One of a Kind K9 will make a donation to Lucky Dog Animal Rescue for each training enrollment.
At One of A Kind K9, we care for your cherished pet like your K9 was our own.
Your Dog’s Friend (Rockville, Md) offers a variety of classes – weekend, evening, and weekday; short-term, ongoing, and mini-series; training & behavior, dog sports, and testing prep, all taught by experienced instructors who use positive, rewards-based training methods that are enjoyable for you and your dog! http://www.yourdogsfriend.info/Class-Schedules.html
Fur-Get Me Not's (Arlington, VA) Levels program allows each student/dog team to progress at their own pace. Instead of enrolling in a 6 to 8 week class where the students progress together, in the Levels program students purchase monthly memberships and progress from the puppy Level to Level 4 when you and your dog are ready. Fur-Get Me Not also offers in-home private training along with a variety of other classes. Take advantage of their Free Phone Consult (a $45 value) offer to new Lucky Dog Adopters within the first 30 days of adoption to help develop a training plan for your dog. Please refer to the coupon in your adoption packet.
Spot On Training (DC) offers a fantastic 7 week puppy class focused on helping puppies become well socialized grown up dogs. Ask about the Spot on Gives Back program which donates a part of your registration fee to Lucky Dog! http://www.spotondogtrainingdc.com/Spot_On_Training/Puppy_Class.html
Your Dog’s Friend also offers a variety of incredibly beneficial free workshops. http://www.yourdogsfriend.info/Workshop-Schedules.html
Training Articles Quick Links:
www.openpaw.org (training tips)
www.helpingfido.com (training tips)
www.aspcabehavior.org (behavior tips)
www.animalbehaviorassociates.com (behavior tips)
www.dogloverscompanion.com (traveling with dogs)
www.livingwithkidsanddogs.com (kids & dogs)
www.DogGoneSafe.com (kids & dogs)
www.dogsandstorks.com (expecting parents)