D.C.-area dog trainers provide tips and advice
D.C.-area dog trainer
Roll over these dog-training tips with three highly rated D.C.-area animal trainers.
What training methods do you use?
Brian Kerchner: We use natural training methods. We work with dogs how they work with each other. We don’t humanize dogs by talking to them in sentences all the time. We focus on using energy, body language.
Anne Davis: It’s positive reinforcement. I use a lot of treats in the beginning and later on I teach people how to back off those treats.
David Schmucker: I use dog whispering, where we spend time with the owners so the owners understand how the dog thinks, and then we show them how to communicate in a way the dog can understand.
Who we spoke to
Good Dog Workshop
Brian Kerchner, owner
Rudy’s Friends Dog Training
Anne Davis, owner
SideWalk Dog Training
David Schmucker, owner
Do you offer home visits?
Kerchner: We go to our clients’ homes, wherever the major problems are happening. We take our dogs with us on the appointments to show people how well dogs can behave and to show them how to socialize their dogs.
Davis: Yes. Some people are too busy to make a commitment for a regular class. Also, group work isn’t appropriate for dogs that need special attention.
Schmucker: I go to their home because we want the dog’s behavior to change in that environment.
How much does training cost?
Kerchner: We have a flat $150-an-hour rate.
Davis: Home visits are $90 a visit or $525 for seven sessions. Group classes such as Basic Manners Made Easy are $190 for seven sessions.
Schmucker: If it’s a puppy, because I go twice, it’s $495. If it’s just a dog over 6 months, training is $395 since I just go one time.
What type of training or certification do you have?
Kerchner: Mine is just being a good student of dogs. It’s nothing that requires formal training. It’s something that anyone can learn from the dogs themselves.
Davis: I’m a certified dog trainer, and I started training in 2000 through International Association of Canine Professionals.
Schmucker: I took each Cesar Millan show like a seminar and broke down the tape.Certifications generally teach a traditional style of training, which is a training I don’t do.