Should I hire a professional trainer for my Psychiatric Service Dog?
Some projects in our lives are simply not suited for a good ol’ DIY! When it comes to training your Psychiatrist Service Dog, leaving it to a professional will likely result in the best outcome.
The Short: Hiring a professional trainer for your Psychiatric Service Dog will ensure that your dog receives the highest quality training, and that you receive optimal guidance and support.
Here’s a bit more on the process and benefits:
Hiring a PSD Trainer
Many aspiring PSD owners choose to leave it to the professionals when it comes to training. While it is possible to successfully train them yourself, professional trainers will maximize your dog’s chance of passing any required certification tests through experienced training methods. The best PSD trainers are specialized in training through positive reinforcement methods and will create a customized training plan that meets your specific needs and your dog’s abilities.
The cost of a trainer can vary greatly depending on their experience, location, and training program for your PSD. Consider your budget, timeline, and priorities when evaluating trainers.
Working with a PSD Trainer
Once you’ve selected a PSD trainer, steps involved in the training process include:
- Assessment: Your trainer will ask questions about your condition, lifestyle, daily challenges, and identify the tasks and behaviors your PSD will need to be trained for.
- Selection: If you haven’t gotten your dog yet, your trainer can recommend candidates based on important factors, including breed, size, temperament, and trainability
- Planning: Your trainer will create a customized training based on your needs and goals that outlines necessary tasks and behaviors as well as training methods and techniques.
- PSD Training: From obedience, task training, and public access manners to specialized behaviors for your condition, your trainer will work with your dog on essential skills.
- Handler Training: You’ll receive an education on how to handle your PSD effectively, including commands, reinforcement techniques, and general dog care and maintenance.
- Public Access: If applicable, your trainer will help with public access training, so that your PSD is prepared to behave appropriately and calmly in various public settings.
- Graduation: Once the dog has completed the necessary training, you will have a graduation or certification process, depending on the organization or trainer.
- Support: Your trainer may offer ongoing assistance as you adjust to having a PSD.
We hope this answers your questions about hiring an expert trainer for your PSD. If you would like to learn more, we’re happy to help — just reach out!