Dog Forum banner

1 - 2 of 2 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Is anyone here a dog trainer? I was just wondering what you think of your job, advantages/ disadvantages and just basic overview of your schedule and what you do, etc. I was looking into veterinary technician but heard they burn out quick and the pay isn’t the best. I know money isn’t everything but I’m in NJ and it’s expensive to live so I want to be able to pay the bills and several people have suggested dog training.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
600 Posts
I'm not personally a dog trainer but a friend of mine is. I am a scuba diving instructor... or at least I was for 15 years. I have recently retired so that I can start enjoying scuba diving again......

In scuba diving the saying is that if you want to make a small fortune in the scuba industry then you need to start with a large fortune.

In my personal experience -- and this is not an exaggeration -- scuba instruction is a "loss leader". You might want to google that term. It means that initial instruction is an "investment" (at a loss) in order to be able to sell something of greater value to the customer down the line.

In the case of scuba instruction, the thing of greater value is equipment, travel and more training. This doesn't mean that the initial training was poor quality, just that the seller didn't turn a profit on it and will have hope and expectations of further business.

EXACTLY the same phenomenon happens with dog training. The initial (puppy) training is often a loss leader. You can join for next to nothing but then you're in the "fold". The "tribe" or "community" feeling is cultivated and then harvested. Most dog trainers (at least the ones I know) make the vast majority of their profit running "walking services".

Training is a loss leader but the walking and/or kennel services is where the money is made.

OK...so having said all that. Those are the basic "gears" of an industry like this. If you are the "trainer" then you are the "cost center" unless you are one of the few who are good enough to freelance and make money rehabilitating serious behavioural issues.

Because you are the cost center you will be in the same situation as a scuba instructor... namely, under constant pressure to "pump them through" so something of greater value can be sold to the customer after they have been "hooked".

After all... businesses need to make money.

I'm sorry to burst this bubble. The fact is that where the rubber meets the road, dog trainers really do want to do a good job. The companies they work for, however, don't give a rat's friggen ass if the dogs are well trained or not and actually profit more from customers who have "problem" dogs. The more ineffective the training is, the better your employer will like it.

If you have been following this train of thought then you will understand why a person should never hire a "company" with a "good reputation" for puppy training. Always go with a freelancer who comes recommended from mouth to mouth.

At least, that's my take on the state of affairs.
 
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
Top