Learning how to become a dog trainer can be both exciting and tough, but the first thing you have to ask yourself is whether you are interested in training dogs. Another thing to consider is whether you are willing to work with people, because the training required to become a dog trainer obviously involves interacting with people who will do the training. The type of teaching depends on what level of skills you want to achieve. Most people would like to teach just their domestic buddies. Even with your own dogs, the teaching requires time.
Dog trainers do not need federal or state certifications. Someone who coaches his or her pet can be called a trainer. Those who earn money teaching dogs may call themselves professionals in the area. Finding a true professional can actually be a challenge, but before you find one, find time to learn about animal behavior, specifically about those of dogs. There are books and instructional materials available online.
Teaching yourself without the help of others can be tough. No dog trainer has learned the art and science of teaching these pets alone. But do not seek a professional coach just yet. Consider finding someone you know who has dogs and trains them well. You probably have at least one friend who trains dogs. How about asking them for free tips?
Of course, not everything is free. The next thing to do is get serious with it. By getting serious, that means educating yourself. There are many ways to educate yourself. One is by looking for online courses on how to train a dog. Aside from an online course, you can also buy books for supplemental information. Some of the books you should be reading are Nicole Wilde's "So You Want to Become a Dog Trainer" and Terry Ryan's "Coaching People to Train Their Dogs". You may be able to find more books of these authors.
Reading books and instructional materials alone will not necessarily make you a good coach for these pets. Developing skills involves work and actual experience in dog handling. If you have dogs at home, you should find it easy to learn how to train them. However, keep in mind that there are different needs. Different kinds should be trained in different ways. If you are after becoming a professional dog trainer, you should learn how to train different breeds. So, your experience with your own pets at home is not enough.
What about asking to become a volunteer at a local dog shelter? Since raising your own does not necessarily make you a good candidate for training, it's an advantage to have experience with unfamiliar dogs.
Training classes are your final and most important recourse. Lessons are based on animal psychology, particularly involving positive reinforcement approaches. Lessons involve actual demonstrations of the professional training in handling dogs.
Should you enroll your pet? You should, because it's better to go with the teaching and have your own pet to practice on. Have patience, though, as you will not get results in a few days.