- What should the customer know about your pricing (e.g., discounts, fees)?
I offer two options for pricing: (A) pay-per-session or (B) purchase a program. The vast majority of my clients purchase a program because they like knowing exactly what results and benefits they will get out of training, and it affords them a discount off the per-session rate.
- What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
I offer a free phone or in-person consultation so that I can learn about the owner's goals for their dog and what they have tried so far. I also want to get a feel for how the dog is currently responding to his/her owner and identify where there are issues. We will discuss the dog's behavioral and medical history and the owner's concerns in detail. At that point, I will make a recommendation for which of our programs will be the best fit for the client and their dog, and design a customized training plan that fully addresses their needs and goals.
- What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
The field of dog training is largely unregulated, meaning that anyone with a dog and a dream can technically call them self a trainer. That's why any trainer who is serious about their profession and their abilities will have some sort of certification or credentials - it's important to demonstrate to clients that you take your job seriously. I am Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA) through the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers (CCPDT). In order to receive this certification, I had to have at least 300 hours of dog training experience with clients, a professional recommendation, pass an extensive written exam and agree to abide by a strict code of ethics. In order to maintain my certification, I have to receive continuing education credits as well. The CCPDT has high standards for their trainers and promotes science-based training methods. I love to learn and read, so I'm always deepening my understanding of my craft. I read books, blogs, studies, watch videos, participate in forums and take classes and seminars online on a pretty much daily basis. You could say that I'm slightly obsessed ;-P