Unleashing the Truth: The Best and Worst Aspects of Being a Dog Trainer

by | Jun 30, 2024

Being a dog trainer is a unique profession that comes with its own set of rewards and challenges. From the joy of witnessing the transformation of misbehaving pups to the frustrations of dealing with clients who won’t pay, dog trainers experience a rollercoaster of emotions on a daily basis. In this blog post, we’ll explore the best and worst aspects of being a dog trainer.

The Best:

1. Making a Positive Impact One of the most rewarding aspects of being a dog trainer is the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of dogs and their owners. Whether it’s helping a fearful rescue dog gain confidence or teaching a mischievous puppy good manners, witnessing the progress and growth of your canine clients is incredibly fulfilling.

2. Building Relationships: As a dog trainer, you have the privilege of building strong bonds not only with the dogs you work with but also with their owners. Establishing trust and rapport with clients allows you to work collaboratively toward common goals, fostering a sense of camaraderie and mutual respect.

3. Continuous Learning: Dog training is a dynamic field that requires ongoing education and skill development. From studying canine behavior and training techniques to learning about social media marketing and business finances, being a dog trainer offers endless opportunities for personal and professional growth.

The Worst:

1. Dealing with Difficult Clients: While many clients are eager and receptive to your guidance, others may prove to be challenging to work with. From unrealistic expectations to resistance to change, navigating difficult client dynamics can be draining and lead to burnout.

2. Emotional Toll: Despite your best efforts, not every training session will yield the desired results. Dealing with setbacks and clients who don’t do the work can take an emotional toll, especially when working with dogs facing behavioral issues stemming from trauma or neglect.

3. Having to Do It All: Most dog trainers are self-employed, without a large budget to hire marketing, finance or other professionals. This means that dog trainers have to do all of their own scheduling, paperwork, communicating with clients, tracking payments and expenses, marketing, budgeting and staying up to date on legal requirements, in addition to providing their dog training services.


Being a dog trainer is a multifaceted profession that offers both rewards and challenges. While the opportunity to make a positive impact, build relationships, and engage in continuous learning is immensely gratifying, the demands of dealing with difficult clients, and the stress of trying to do it all cannot be overlooked.

For burnout and overwhelm, having a supportive network of others who can understand what you are going through can help. That’s why we have our Facebook group, DTU: Marketing and Running an R+ Dog Business, and our paid mentoring group “Trainers Growth Group” (if you buy our course, you get 3 months of TGG membership). We share knowledge about how to run a successful business and provide support, feedback and a receptive ear.

Ultimately, the best dog trainers are those who possess a combination of patience, empathy, resilience, and a genuine passion for working with dogs and their people, and who see themselves as business owners, not just trainers. By embracing the highs and lows of the profession and remaining committed to growing their business, dog trainers can continue to make a lasting difference in the lives of dogs and their owners.


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