Detroit animal training experts give tips
Who we talked to
What services do you offer?
Dan Morris: "We offer basic training. What it boils down to is teaching people what to do, rather than the dog."
Liz Blondy: "We offer dog day care; cage-free, attended overnight boarding; all pet grooming; a public dog park; and obedience training."
Deb Watkins: "We offer dog day care, boarding, grooming and training. We also have a retail store."
Why should people hire an animal trainer?
Dan Morris: "You don't want the dog jumping on people or running out the front door - everyone should have their dog trained by a professional."
Liz Blondy: "A well-trained dog is a lot nicer to live with than an untrained one. "
Deb Watkins: "No one wants to be around a dog that misbehaves. It's a responsibility and a joy to have a trained dog."
What methods of training do you use?
Dan Morris: "Positive reinforcement with gestures and praise."
Liz Blondy: "We only practice positive reinforcement."
Deb Watkins: "Positive reinforcement and, on occasion, clicker training."
Do you train both the pet and owner?
Dan Morris "I train the owner and then we train the dog."
Liz Blondy: "It's mostly the owner."
Deb Watkins: "80 percent of training is training the owner."
How much does training cost?
Dan Morris: "It's $285 for six weeks of once-a-week, one-hour classes."
Liz Blondy: "We have a basic obedience class that's six weeks, one weeknight each for one hour, that's $140."
Deb Watkins: "One-night seminars are $30, four-week once-weekly classes are $90 and six-week weekly classes are $120."
Do you do individual or group training?
Dan Morris: "It's smaller groups or private individual classes."
Liz Blondy: "We do group classes of up to six dogs."
Deb Watkins: "It's training in groups of eight to 14 or less with multiple instructors."
After your training, should owners continue your techniques?
Dan Morris: "Yes. Training really never stops."
Liz Blondy: "Yes. It's about consistency."
Deb Watkins: "Yes. You have to keep their minds stimulated."
What's one helpful training tip you can offer?
Dan Morris: "It takes patience."
Liz Blondy: "Meal time is one of the best times to train. Feed them piece by piece and teach them something."
Deb Watkins: "Do the work. Walk and exercise your dog and put the time in."