Several factors determine how much dog training costs. People train their dogs for several reasons, such as obedience, becoming a service dog, hunting, or protection. Where you live also affects the cost of professional dog training. The average cost of dog training can range from $30 to $150 a class.
We’ll cover why dog training is essential, how to find a good dog trainer and factors that can affect the cost of your dog training session. By having a general idea of what to expect, you should be able to find a good dog trainer in your price range.
What Age Should You Train a Dog
The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB) recommends that owners begin socialization classes when puppies are seven to eight weeks old. You can also start teaching them simple commands. During this time, it is critical to socialize your puppy the correct way to avoid specific behavioral problems as they get older, such as:
Puppy Socialization classes can range between $30 – $80 per session, depending on the program. AVSAB recommends starting obedience training at six months old when the puppy’s attention span can be more receptive.
Factors that Affect the Cost of Dog Training
There are several factors besides your location that affect the cost of dog training:
- Type of Dog Training: This is the most significant factor. It is much cheaper for obedience training vs. service dog training. The main reason for this is because the programs last longer and the trainers have very specialized skills that increase the fee.
- Private: Private training sessions will be significantly more expensive than group training sessions, but they are also more effective. Private training costs between $45 to $120 per hour.
- Group: Group training classes cost between $30 to $80 per session, but your dog doesn’t get the dedicated one-on-one training. Some dogs do great in group settings, and it also helps socialize your puppy with other dogs.
- Board and Train: Board and train sessions can last months or years, depending on their training. Hunting dogs may train for a couple of months where you pay a monthly fee of $500+. Service dogs can take years to teach where the cost is around $1000+ a month.
How to Find a Great Dog Trainer
When looking for a dog trainer, you should be motivated to find a trainer based on more than just cost. There are several things you should look for when deciding on a trainer:
- Teaching Methodology: The best trainers use the positive reinforcement method that rewards the dog for good behavior rather than punishing the dog.
- Qualifications: The best dog trainers get a degree in animal behavior and have certifications such as CTC, KPA, VSPDT, PMCT, or VSA-CDT that usually appear next to their name or title. You’ll also want a trainer with professional dog training memberships with national associations like the CCPDT, IAABC, or PPG.
- Continuing Education: The best dog trainers keep their certifications current and list their continuing education credits.