Tag Archives: Dog training college

Join The DogSmith® Become a Dog Trainer!

In today’s economy, owning your own DogSmith business may be the best investment you can make. Take it from the likes of J. Paul Getty (who said the only way to make a great deal of money is to own one’s own business) and Warren Buffet (who prefers owning a business to passive investments). We believe that you can be successful in just about any business if you are willing to work hard enough but because of our mission, vision, ethics and values, and our unique DogSmith pledge you will be proud to be a DogSmith. The DogSmith is synonymous with quality and expertise in the pet care industry. We help pets become family! ®


Join The DogSmith® Become a Dog Trainer!

Join The DogSmith® Team and become:
A Professional Dog Trainer & Behavior Counselor, plus learn the skills to be:

  • A Professional Pet Care Provider
  • A Member of The Pet Professional Guild
  • A Certified Dog Trainer
  • A Pet Dog Ambassador Licenced Instructor and Assessor
  • A Business Owner
  • A Pet Nutrition Expert

The DogSmith ® Offers Unrivaled Pet Care!
We Provide:

  • On-site training in learning theory
  • One-on-one training & business support
  • The DogSmith® proprietary marketing program
  • Weekly marketing support and accountability calls
  • Weekly financial training and support
  • Peer group support from the DogSmith team
  • Purchasing system
  • Website, toll free call access & business management software
  • Continuing educational units for DogSmiths
  • Web seminars
  • Media and Public Relations support
  • Practical Dog Training Skills

Learn more about how to become a DogSmith

Contact us today for a FREE phone consultation

1-888-Dog-Smith (364-7648) ext 2

DogSmith License Operations
Rick Ingram
1-888-Dog-Smith (364-7648) ext 3

The DogSmith Founder
Niki Tudge
1-888-Dog-Smith (364-7648) ext 3

How to Become a Dog Trainer and Make Your Passion Your Profession

There are fewer careers that I can name that free you from the office cubicle while providing virtually unlimited potential for personal fulfillment and professional achievement than Dog Training and Pet Care. Dog Training and Pet Care is a field that will constantly challenge you intellectually and can provide you the opportunity to create a truly balanced joyous life.
Once you’ve determined that you want to be a professional dog trainer you need to do some research to find out the pros and cons of the various training philosophies and methodologies currently used. Dog Training methods and philosophies vary from trainer to trainer and school to school. Training philosophies go from the outdated and disproved “Alpha Roll” type coercive methods to the scientific based methods derived from modern studies of Learning Theory and Behavior. You can research various training philosophies and the current methods by visiting the following websites:

http://www.nadoi.org/ The National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors was founded in 1965 to promote modern, humane training methods and at the same time elevate the standards of the profession. NADOI is not only the oldest group of its kind in the world, it is the only professional organization to require that all applicants demonstrate proficiency in their craft, as tested and measured by their peers, before membership is granted. NADOI members are found all across the USA and in many foreign countries.

http://www.ccpdt.org/ The Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT) is an international testing and certification program for professional pet dog trainers. The CCPDT’s certification program is based on humane training practices and the latest scientific knowledge related to dog training. Competence and continued growth in training practices is promoted through the recertification of qualified professionals.

http://www.apdt.com/ The Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) is a professional organization of individual dog trainers who are committed to becoming better trainers through education. The APDT offers individual pet dog trainers a respected and concerted voice in the dog world by promoting professional trainers to the veterinary profession and to increase public awareness of dog friendly training techniques.

http://www.888dogsmith.com/ The DogSmith exists to enhance the lives of pets and their owners by improving their relationship and the quality of the life they share, through providing professional support and training to pet dog owners, supporting and assisting humane societies, animal shelters and rescue organizations to minimize the number of unwanted animals and offering affordable and professional care to family pets so that pet ownership is never a burden.

Once you’ve done your research on training methods and philosophies you will need to decide if you want to learn in a concentrated full time program or if you want to learn and gain experience part time. You can gather the necessary skills by a combination of self study academics with extensive practical experience working for another trainer whose methods you respect or would you prefer to attend formal training through an established curriculum. There is no degree required to become a dog trainer, but you should attain both “book knowledge” and hands-on experience before offering your services to the public. Read books, attend seminars, watch DVDs. Get as much practical experience as possible by mentoring under another trainer and volunteering to work at your local shelter or with rescue groups. Shelter/rescue work is a great way to get practical experience with dogs of various breeds and temperament.
Don’t forget though that most of a professional dog trainer’s work involves training other people how to train and communicate with their dog. Consider whether you enjoy working with people as well as dogs. Many people get into the profession of dog training without realizing that what dog trainers do is really to train people to train dogs. You must have patience and empathy, and be as good coaching your human clients (lots of positive reinforcement!) as you are with your dogs.

Finally, is your goal to work for another training school in an established business or is your dream to start your own training and pet care business? One of the great possibilities of starting your own dog training business is that you can work out of your own home so start up costs are minimal. If you plan to start your own business you can be a sole entity or part of a franchise system.
You will probably start out by training part-time while working another job. Whether you can make a living as a full-time trainer depends on how many classes/sessions you are able to schedule in a week, how much demand there is for trainers in your geographic area, and whether you offer other additional services such as boarding, board-and-train or other pet care services.
And there is plenty of room to specialize if your interests are agility competition, obedience, rally, fly ball, assistance dogs or simply pet dogs. And don’t forget the growing interest in training cats, birds, horses, donkeys or any of the animals found more and more frequently on “hobby” farms around the country.

The challenges are endless as is the learning. But if you have the burning desire to work with animals and if you love meeting new people, analyzing problems and developing programs that may keep a dog from being given up to a shelter then you have what it takes to become a successful professional dog trainer.

DogSmith Training Philosophy and Methodology

The DogSmith Pet Dog Training Philosophy and Methodology.

Welcome to the DogSmith and an overview of our training philosophies and methodologies. If you are embarking on a dog training career or if you just want to further educate yourself and your dog then you are about to commence a fascinating journey into the world of interspecies communication. What exactly does that mean? Well, to train dogs we first need to understand how to communicate with them. As we all know we speak human and they speak dog. We are primates and they are canines. The other side of the communication coin is that we need to understand how they communicate with us using their bodies and vocal tones. In addition, we need to understand what they are physically capable of doing and of course we need to understand what motivates them. To motivate a dog to do something it is physically capable of doing we need to accept that dogs are a predator and an opportunist and every behavior they display is designed to support their survival. There are millions of dogs in the world. Biologists consider the canine species, because of their numbers, to be hugely successful. There are more dogs than wolves, there are more dogs than most any other animal so domestication has been a critical component of their success. Yet domestication means dogs rely on us for much of their needs. We humans are in a position of control and power and are necessary for their ongoing wellbeing and survival.

If we put all of this together then the only thing stopping us from training dogs to do anything they are physically capable of doing is the training mechanics employed and our personal training approach, methodology and training philosophy. As with everything else in life, there are many ways to train dogs ranging from whatever the current fad is to scientifically researched and proven techniques. Methods range in their effectiveness as well. Some methods are inhumane, cruel and abusive while others are just plain ineffective. At The DogSmith we work toward a world where people and their pets live together to the mutual benefit of each and where, by our efforts, we can significantly reduce the number of unwanted pets and provide abused, neglected, and abandoned pets an opportunity to find their “forever home”. Our mission exists to enhance the lives of pets and their owners by improving their relationship and the quality of the life they share through:
1) Providing professional support and training to pet dog owners,
2) Supporting and assisting animal shelters and rescue organizations to minimize the number of unwanted animals, and
3) Offering affordable and professional care to family pets so that pet ownership is never a burden.
Our vision and mission is guided by some very stringent values. We seek to do no harm, we emphasize a ‘holistic’ approach to pet care by attending to the physical, emotional, and environmental well being of all pets and each DogSmith will support, through its deeds, efforts and sponsorship, animal shelters and rescue organizations to promote and implement the “no kill” animal philosophy.

How did the DogSmith training methodology and training philosophy evolve? Well, having spent considerable time researching and studying psychology while working with pet dogs and their owners, we recognized that dogs learn in two ways. The first way dogs learn is from their environment (acquisition learning). This type of learning is going on all the time. In the ‘pet dog world’ examples of this include learning that takes place in and around the home on a daily basis whether under supervision or not, at the dog park, at their day care or when they are out and about with their owners. Dogs do what works for them and what brings them rewards in their daily life. It is not hard to imagine how dogs pick up and develop unwanted behaviors when owners unknowingly repeatedly reinforce the wrong behaviors exhibited by their dog. The other way dogs learn is in a formalized learning environment such as a dog training class or during periods when you specifically work with your dog to train them on a particular skill or task. This learning is more structured and formal. This is learning derived from education rather than from the accumulation of experience. With formalized learning the pet dogs are involved and active in the learning process.
Because we at The DogSmith recognize that dogs learn in two ways, we found it necessary to develop our MTR approach to Dog Training. This is a tool that guides us in our approach to helping pet dog owners with their four legged family members. MTR© refers to three critical and key components of learning – Management of the dog and their environment, Training with the dog and the dog’s owner and the Relationship that a owner and their pet dog share. It would be pointless to invest in dog obedience classes with a pet dog if the dog is then left unsupervised to pick up bad habits from its environment. Alternatively, it is not possible to train and manage a dog’s environment correctly if the relationship between dog and owner is lacking trust and mutual respect.
The DogSmith approach to the actual training and the philosophy that drives our methodology is the DogSmith ARRF© methodology. The ARRF© methodology of dog training and behavior modification was developed by The DogSmith Training Center and provides the most effective training system possible for the Pet Dog and its owner. By understanding and using the most current scientific learning principles applied to pet dog training, The DogSmith ensures that learning will be humane, effective, reliable, fun and easy. DogSmith Trainers are skilled at developing objective learning criteria, applying positive reinforcement and establishing training guidelines to ensure desired behaviors are frequently practiced in a variety of contexts. Most importantly, DogSmith Trainers fully engage pet dogs and their owners in the learning process by creating a fun and highly motivating environment ensuring active participation is sustained by both students (dog and human). ARRF© stands for
A = Active Involvement. Active involvement in the learning process is critical. When the student is actively participating, rather than passively observing, greater learning takes place. This applies to both the dog and its owner.
R = Repetition. Newly acquired skills need to be repeated frequently in a variety of contexts to ensure they are robust. This means the skills you and your dog learn will be effective in and around your home and out and about around town. Frequent repetition in various scenarios ensures the skill is truly ‘owned’ so the student can not only generalize its behaviors in new situations but can also discriminate when appropriate.
R = Reward. Positive reinforcements, in the form of rewards for accomplishing skills successfully, are far more effective to ensure learning takes place. Rewards such as food and toys are quickly replaced by life rewards, such as attention and petting, when behaviors are under cue control.
F = Finite Objectives. Clearly defined and attainable objectives make it clear to student and instructor what is to be learned and taught. With clear objectives the student and instructor can easily recognize when a particular skill has been mastered and during the process we ‘train – test –train’ to ensure our objectives are met.
The DogSmith does not condone or use harsh corrective training methods that seek to only punish unwanted behaviors rather than reinforce suitable and searched for behaviors. When we address behavioral problems we use functional assessments to identify the drivers of the unwanted behavior and then work with sound scientific principles to modify inappropriate responses. We do not use flooding techniques that further suppress behavioral problems or accelerate learned helplessness. These methods are in direct conflict with our vision, mission and values. We believe that “violence be
gins where knowledge ends” and we recognize that coercion has major consequences that our not conducive to the relationship we believe people want with their pet dogs.
At the other end of the training continuum, The DogSmith also recognizes that training methods that use food and only food with no plan to remove the food lure early on in the training process can be as ineffective, yet not as damaging or as harsh as compulsion training methods. The DogSmith methodology addresses this too by replacing food lures and reinforcement with play, petting and motivational dog toys early in the training process.
For more information on the DogSmith Training philosophy and methodology you can contact the DogSmith Training Center at 1-888-Dog-Smith or to find a local DogSmith visit www.888DogSmith.com. Copyright Niki Tudge 2009