My favorite thing about training (other than getting to work all day with dogs, the most wonderful creatures on the face of the Earth)is helping people rediscover the joy of living with dogs.
People call me because they are having some trouble with their pooch. Some times it is as simple as just not knowing how to teach a sit or down. But, sometimes people call me because they are desparate. Their puppy is wildly out of control , eating their stuff, nipping and frightening their kids, knocking down frail family members, destroying their homes and causing family fights.
Showing them how to teach the dog how to have nice manners and listen to them is fun for me. I love seeing the look of surprised amazement on their faces as the dog walks next to them down the sidewalk instead of being dragged and jerked like they are used to. I get immense satisfaction in seeing people go from being angry, disappointed and frustrated to being proud of their dogs. Sometimes it is just teaching the dog to behave so that the family can go back to doing activities that they used to enjoy but had to stop doing because of the dog's bad behavior. I had a family say that they couldn't enjoy the in ground pool that they had installed because the dog would jump on them and claw them up when they were in the water or run around the perimeter nipping and jumping on everyone. But if they locked her up inside she would howl and cry and make them feel guilty and spoil the day.
Another family said that they could not enjoy their ping pong table, another could not use their trampoline and still another said the children could not play in thier own back yard. I have had several different people tell me that they were so fed up that they were considering sending the dog to the pound. The training I did with their dogs kept the dog in their homes, not locked away and isolated from the family activities and allowed the people to get back to doing the things that they enjoy
I get the same satisfaction when our pet sitting clients tell me that they can relax and enjoy their vacation or concentrate on their work when they travel for business because they know the pets are in good hands with Happy at Home Pet Sitting (www.happyhomepetsit.com)
I think one reason people trust me to help them with their training struggles is because I can relate to their problems and consequently am patient and non judgemental. I know there are a lot of trainers who point fingers at clients and tell them "you screwed up this dog" "Its your fault he's like this" "you caused all these problems". I find it much more helpful to explain to people why dogs behave in the manner that they are and what we can do to change it.
I can relate to what they are going through so it helps me be patient with them. My first dog was spoiled and obnoxious. So I know the kinds of issues this can cause in a family. I have had a dominant, high energy, pushy breed and I currently have an anxious dog. So I know the kinds of issues this can cause in a family.
I think keeping up with advances and new techniques is important so I attend training seminars and work shops with the best trainers in the counrty. This is another thing that sets me apart from some other trainers who say that their training method is the best and only way to go. I think it is important to use the tools and techniques that are right for each individual dog and to be sure that the owner is comfortable with it too.