Purrfect Pet Sitting Interviews: Teri Rudolph; The Dog Trainer

white poodle sitting on chair

Teri Rudolph is a certified professional dog trainer from Watervliet, NY.  She is a graduate of Animal Behavior College and she provides many dog training services.  She was kind enough to agree to a five question interview!

1.  How long have you been a dog trainer?

I received my certification from Animal Behavior College in January 2011 to become a certified dog trainer.  I began assisting my mentor trainer with her classes for additional experience prior to starting my own later that year.  Prior to dog training, I was involved in conformation events (dog shows) with our Labrador Retriever’s Molly and Daisy.  My husband and I also raised Labrador’s and enjoyed seeing many beautiful puppies go to wonderful loving homes.

2.  What is the most common training mistake people make?

I would have to say the most common mistake, if I had to pick one, is focusing (correcting or punishing) what our dog is doing wrong instead of teaching our dog what we would like them to do instead.

3.  How long does training typically take before someone can expect results?

Dogs are learning 24/7 so, a pet parent learning and applying proper positive training techniques can expect results immediately if their dog is effectively motivated.  That is not to say a dog that has practiced jumping on guests for 6 months will stop immediately, it means, that when he is taught to do something else, when asked to do so, he can learn to sit instead.  He will still need continued training and reminders in various locations, but immediately pet parents can see dogs can learn an alternate behavior for the behavior that is undesired.

4.  Do you work with aggressive dogs?

I do not.  I consider dogs as “aggressive” if they have bitten another animal or a person (causing injury – not in play).  I will consult on dogs that are called “aggressive” if i suspect they are just under-socialized and fearful.  These dogs can often benefit greatly from kind and gentle training.

5.  Are certain breeds easier to train?

Hmmm, good question.  There are certain breed traits that make some dogs perhaps more prone to chase prey than others making a recall off leash more difficult, or dogs that are not as food motivated as say a beagle.  However, it really comes down to learning to be the “cookie” for your dog.  A professional dog trainer will remind you that you need to teach your dog that all good things are going to come through you.  I believe that we need to embrace and work with some of the breed traits that our dogs are born with but really know how to motivate them to do the things that we want so ultimately they will earn the things that they want.

If you find yourself in need of dog training services be sure to visit Teri’s website and tell her we sent you!

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