Q&A With a Guide Dogs Trainer | “The BEST Job in the World”

It is good fun, like best job 
in the world if you ask me. One of my favourite things to teach the guide dogs 
is platforms, so this is where we teach them to get   all four paws on a platform basically, but because 
it's shaping you have to sort of gradually build   the dog up so they start off just by maybe moving 
towards the platform and then you're building up   to one paw, two paws, three paws, four paws so we 
can use it to work past distractions, so we know   they're really distracted by the dogs we
can use it as a focal point and it's just yeah it's quite a fun one to teach.

Yeah my favourite behaviour to 
teach is what we call head in so when you present the harness to the dog at the cue
head in they will put their head in through the harness. It's kind of a way for them to say "okay I want to do 
this I'm ready to work with you" and that's great Hands-on experience with dogs anyway you can 
basically, so it might be going to rescue centres   walking friends dogs, just get hands-on experience 
there's loads of stuff online now as well loads of free webinars that are out there all the 
time so just get experience of dog behaviour   and training that way as well. A good choice to start with it's a great
career if you want to work with animals and dogs and helping people that's great. My suggestion would be to learn as soon as 
you can about how animals learn  and then if you can study in that in that area of expertise 
and get as much practical training as you can.

pexels photo 5749804

You know we we could train a dog to be absolutely 
perfect but unless the guide are going to keep   those skills up you know the training will 
fall apart, so yeah we're essentially training   them to be trainers, so we'll teach them all about 
marker training, how to mark and reward their dog   why we use food and how we use it and making 
sure it's used in the right way.  A lot of people we give dogs to, they never had a dog
before and that's fine because the training is designed to   go from the easier part to the more 
difficult part, so the exercise we do to start with   are easy and fun and they're based on play and 
a lot of reinforcement and it takes  time for them to bond together and just have to 
to go with the dogs pace and follow their needs.

They're just really cute and fluffy and 
they're just fun to train so I've always   done lots of dog training before I started 
at guide dogs, so to do something that I   enjoy as a job as well it's just amazing. The best thing is coming morning and seeing your dogs very happy to see you and have that
really natural and kind good morning from them..

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