Depends on the dog and the pro. I once had one of my dogs with a pro who discouraged visits. This is a VERY reputable, nationally-known pro. The dog and I were very close, and she thought it would set back her training if I visited. Just depends.
I wouldn't want to miss the training experience/bonding by sending my dog off on her own. I have the time so I do it myself. It's all personal preference. I would recommend Jim Beverly for his reputation and unique style and Bill Davis also has a great reputation and loves to train.
If I ever do send a dog away I would want weekly visits to see the dogs progress/treatment/physical condition. A dog to me is not just a dog, it's a family member. I've heard too many stories of dogs coming back not obeying the owner. It only knows the trainer and listens to them only. Also, I've heard of dogs coming back and when you go to pet them they flinch. I do not tolerate that.
The more interaction you have with the trainer and dog, the more you will learn about your dog and how to handle him/her. I leave this up to the client. It is not practical or possible for some clients to visit even once a month. If this is the case, the client must deal with a trainer that is also a good communicator that is willing to spend the time educating you about the dog and how to handle him/her. Upon delivery, the trainer should give you an evaluation of the dogs personality and share both positive and negative findings that will effect the training process. If you have the time, consider doing the training with a trainer on a private session basis. Another way is to send the dog out to get him/her started, and then pick up where the trainer left off. A lot of my clients do this. A mix between private sessions, sending the dog out for the purpose of starting or advancing him/her and a tune-up before the season. The fact is, the decision should be based on how much money you can spend, the time you have to work with the dog and how long are you willing to be seperated from him/her. The trainer should be willing to work with these issues. If you are thinking about competition, that is another subject. Good luck and God Bless...........Jim
I encourage visits by the owner. But I like to wait 3 weeks before having them come over for the first time. This gives me time to work with the dog and get him used to me. When the owner does come over the dog will have learned something in that time frame.
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