Thursday, January 7, 2010

What Makes A Good Dog Trainer?

Here are some traits that I feel make a good dog trainer.
(Listed in no particular order)

1. Purpose - Have passion and purpose when training your dog.
If you don't have it at that moment, then you shouldn't be training.

2. Respect - Treat your dog with the respect she/he deserves.
You’ve made the decision to compete in agility.
You pay the entry fees, drive the vehicle, haul the crate, etc.

3. Teamwork – Work on your relationship EVERY DAY!

4. Change – EMBRACE IT! Change is good! Challenges are GREAT!

5. Communication – Help your dog understand what you want, by having clear criteria in your training and handling.

6. Self-Development – The commitment to continue building your knowledge in regards to dog behavior, and new training techniques. Be sure to be 'open' to those new training techniques. Search for the methods that best fit your dog’s learning style, and realize that "one size does not fit all".

7. Vision/Goal – Have a vision/goal for yourself and your teammate.

8. Faith - Have faith in your teammate and your training!
A 'CAN-DO' spirit goes a LONG WAY!

9. Perseverance - When break downs in your training occur, and they will, look at it as 'homework'. Something you can work on together and emerge stronger!

10. Positive attitude - Your teammate knows the difference!
Be positive! Be confident! SMILE!!! Enjoy your dog.

Enjoy the Journey!

Photo by - Marsha Kingsley
See her amazing photos at:

Can you think of others?


  1. Great points! That's refrigerator material! How about both a sense of humor and a sense of gratitude that we have the time and resources to do this fun stuff with our dogs? I mean really, here we are, getting all anal about shaving .01 of a second off a course or having a perfect flip finish, sometimes it's easy to forget we are SO MUCH LUCKIER than all those poor idiots who don't have a dog to love and train.

  2. You're RIGHT!! I thought about since of humor after this post! How many times do your dogs make you LAUGH!! Okay, it wasn't suppose to go "that" way! I remember one agility run that Nina had, she went through the chute 4 TIMES!! Each time we came within 30' of it, that's where she went. She was in total rip mode! It's also so easy to take so many things for granted! We ALL have so much to be thankful for!

  3. I know I have been complaining about puppies, but they really make you laugh. It's been fun for me and even for Jazz I think. Training has gotten more fun again because he is so funny.

  4. Excellent!! Lots of great thoughts!!