Q&A with Florida dog training experts
Stay focused while these highly rated Tampa-area dog trainers speak about finding the perfect trainer for your pooch.
When should a dog begin training?
Will Thomas: For a puppy, 8 weeks old is the perfect time. If you rescue an older dog, start training right away.
Gaby Urevitch: As soon as you bring your puppy home at around 8 to 10 weeks old.
Monica Upton: As soon as possible. It’s best to begin after their first puppy shots at 8 or 9 weeks old.
Will Thomas, owner
COMPLETE K-9 ACADEMY
Gaby Urevitch, owner
Monica Upton, dog behavior technician
How long should a dog be in training?
Thomas: Basic obedience training is one thing, but you should have a training mindset and teaching presence at all times.
Urevitch: After the obedience training basics, it’s up to the owner to maintain the training as the dog ages.
Upton: Dogs are all different and learn at their own pace. Genetics and owner consistency play big roles in how long it takes to train a dog.
How much do you charge for private training?
Thomas: I charge $800 for a 2- to 3-hour private lesson, but I’m unique because I can usually fix any problems you are having in one visit.
Urevitch: I do a package for a four-day, overnight boot camp that is $1,200. When you pick your dog back up, I show you how to maintain the training I did.
Upton: We offer private lessons at our location for $65 an hour and private lessons in your home for $95 an hour.
What advice can you offer pet owners considering a trainer?
Thomas: Find someone you can get along with and whose training method makes sense to you. They should take the time to explain to you how they operate.
Urevitch: Whenever you see a well-behaved dog, ask the owner who trained them. Word of mouth is the most powerful advertising in this industry.
Upton: Do your research and make sure they have a good reputation. Determine what their training method is and ask as many questions as you can.