Welcome to the Alabama Sniffspot top dog trainer list for 2022. This is a list of the top dog trainers in Alabama based on votes from the Sniffspot community and the general public. Over 45,000 votes were used in compiling this list. We have only included the top trainers with sufficient votes and the trainers are ordered in terms of the number of votes received. Trainers that tied are ranked in reverse alphabetical order based on first name. All dog trainers on this list are positive reinforcement only, as defined by no force, fear, intimidation, or aversive methods used
Dog training is one of the most important activities someone can do with their dog. Many come to dog training through a specific issue they want addressed, anything from barking to separation anxiety. Some have adopted dogs from animal shelters with an abusive experience and some just have happy puppies looking for everyday life skills. Trainers can help with all kinds of specific skills and issues, from leash manners to territorial aggression to anxiety around skateboards to common puppy challenges. However, what many discover is that working with a trainer is actually a way for a pet owner to deepen their relationship with their dog. The enhanced communication skills that result can increase quality of life, be a rewarding experience, be a social experience and lead to more harmonious relationships. Knowing that one’s dog is having a happier life can dramatically improve peace of mind. As the saying goes: happy dog, happy life. And it extends further than just the dog, to the pet owners. Owner empowerment can actually improve the relationship between owners. And finding the right trainer can make all the difference in the experience.
This list is compiled by Sniffspot, which is the largest network of private dog parks for rent in the world. Each of the thousands of Sniffspot dog parks are hosted by locals on private land with 100% private bookings to maximize safety for guests and their dogs. Sniffspot offers various types of dog parks, including fenced, water parks, indoor dog parks, dog beaches and more. Sniffspot has worked closely with dog trainers to create safe spaces for dogs and our top trainer lists are a natural extension of that relationship. You can browse Sniffspot's local dog parks here.
The Best Alabama Dog Trainers in 2022
Frances Dauster, CC (CPDT-KA 2001 - 2016) NADOI Certified, has been an instructor for Family Dog Obedience Training since 1998.She has taught for the for the Mobile Bay Dog Training Club, Mobile AL; Community Education Program of Mobile, AL; Skills Center, Eglin Airforce Base, FL; B&B Pet Stop, Mobile, AL; Theodore Veterinary Hospital, Theodore, AL; PetSupermarket, Mobile, AL; Pet Supplies "PLUS," Mobile, AL; Village Animal Clinic, Mobile AL and has volunteered instruction for the Southeastern Guide Dog Puppies of the Mobile, AL and Ocean Springs, MS areas.
Frances has participated in AKC obedience venues including AKC and ASCA obedience and AKC agility. She assists in the organization and preparation for local animal-related events and rescues, as well as petfests and many varieties of canine demonstrations. She has taken her dogs for therapy visits to facilities and civic groups.
As a Member of the National Association of Dog Obedience Instructors, a long-standing Professional Member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, as a founding member of TrulyDogFriendly and a member of the Pet Professional Guild, Frances believes in furthering her education by participation in seminars, webcourses, telecourses and hands-on workshops throughout every year. These educational opportunities include many different aspects to do with dogs, including: family dog obedience training; AKC show obedience; agility; barn hunt; herding; tracking; clicker training; behavior modification; puppy training; pet dog training; aggressive dog skills and management; medical issues pertaining to behavior, etc.
Frances is a four-times-recertified Certified Professional Dog Trainer by the Certification Council of Professional Dog Trainers. Furthermore, Frances is a Graduate of the San Francisco SPCA Academy for Dog Trainers! In order to give the best education to her students, both canine and human, Frances believes it is vital to keep current with the most modern aspects of dog training and behavior. Frances is active every day on discussion lists with Professional Dog Trainers, Veterinarians, Certified Pet Behavior Counselors, and other canine professionals worldwide.
Certifications: SF/SPCA Counseling Certificate, NADOI Certified
- Deaf dog training
- Reactive dog training
Behavioral issue focus:
Our goal is to making your pet a good family companion!
Reward based methods. No pinch, choke or electric collars. No force or intimidation techniques.
Mobile AL, Theodore AL, Irvington AL, Grand Bay AL, Spanish Fort AL, Daphne AL, Brewton AL, Silverhill AL, Moss point MS, Pascagoula MS, Ocean Springs MS
Kirsten is a graduate of St. Mary's College in Maryland with a BA in Sociology and Anthropology. One of her first jobs was with the Montgomery County, Md. Humane Society where part of her duties were to euthanize unwanted companion animals. Working with the Humane Society began a lifelong journey for Kirsten to educate herself and others in the art and science of training and living with dogs as companions.
Beginning her career as a dog trainer over 35 years ago, Kirsten first learned more traditional methods which relied heavily on punishment and the use of equipment such as choke chains and pinch collars. Kirsten found many problems could not be solved using punishment and coercion and most dogs actually seemed to get worse. Thus her journey began researching and questioning alternative methods for changing behavior and improving the human animal bond. I will continue to spend my life researching and implementing the most up to date humane, scientifically based training techniques to enhance our relationships with our dogs.
Kirsten belongs to the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants and the Pet Professional guild. She supports initiatives such as SPARCS , The Family Dog Project and Darwins Dogs. These organizations and the many training and behavior lists she belongs to help to her keep up to date on industry trends while providing her with a valuable network of other professionals as resources in the field of animal behavior. Kirsten has earned her CPDT ‚KA, the first international certification for dog trainers in history. She holds a certificate of completion in animal behavior consulting: principles and practices.
Kirsten believes in continuing education and has attended many seminars most notably the benchmark in animal training, all 5 Chicken Workshops given by Bob Bailey in 2002 and repeating them again with Bob Bailey and Parvene Farhoody in the summer of 2015. The right training makes such a positive difference in the lives of so many dogs and their owners. I feel very fortunate to be a part of their success.
- Board and train
- In home training
- Deaf dog training
- Reactive dog training
- Off leash training
Behavioral issue focus:
Stress and resiliency which can manifest itself as aggression or extreme withdrawl
I practice and teach the principles of operant conditioning as well as stress and resiliency management strategies and protocols. All of my services start with an off leash consultation and end with recommendations and training plans.
Mobile and Baldwin counties
My goal is to promote trusting, healthy, and enjoyable relationships for owners and their dogs. My training philosophy is that learning should never be painful, intimidating or forced. Instead, your dog should willingly and happily respond to your cues and have a clear understanding of what is expected. I promote non-aversive tools and methods and employ evidence-based approaches to communicating with dogs. Training should be fun for you and your dog! The methods I use in training creates a thinking dog who is motivated to make good choices.
My experience with dog behavior and training goes back to early childhood as I have always had a fascination with canine behavior and an obsession with all things dog. I have shared my home with a number of mutts and a variety of purebred dogs over the years. In 1997, we brought home our first American Pit Bull Terrier and were hooked on the breed. Currently, we share our home with Finn, CGC, NTD, ITD, ATD, ETD, NSD, OSD, RATI, RATN, RATO, RATS an American Staffordshire Terrier mix, and Leon, NTD, a 4 pound Long Coat Chihuahua. Finn adores dog sports and we have fun at Barn Hunt and lure coursing events and we LOVE trick training.
I have accrued thousands of hours volunteering for shelters and rescue organizations, previously sitting on the Board of Directors for two rescue groups for over a decade and serving as behavior and training consultant. I spend most of my free time with continuing education, networking, and webinars. I am an active member of various behavior related organizations such as the Pet Professional Guild, the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, No Shock Collar Coalition, and I am the only Associate Certified Dog Behavior Consultant in the state of Alabama certified with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.
Certifications: The only Associate Certified Dog Behavior Consultant in the state of Alabama certified with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.
- Board and train
Growing up in a big family in North Alabama, Elizabeth has been passionate about dog training since she began training her first dog at the age of twelve. While still in college, she began training dogs professionally in 2004, teaching group classes and private lessons at Petsmart in Birmingham, AL. Always passionate about helping people with disabilities, Elizabeth moved to Austin, TX in 2007 to become a service dog trainer at the nonprofit organization, Service Dogs, Inc.
In her ten years at Service Dogs, Inc., Elizabeth trained and cared for well over 200 dogs. Because SDI primarily selected service dogs from animal shelters, Elizabeth additionally excelled in conducting temperament evaluations to find the best candidates for her clients with disabilities, and helped place dogs in their forever homes. She also taught private lessons with her clients to successfully train their new service dogs. Elizabeth also played a leadership role in Service Dogs, Inc.'s annual Assistance Dog Training for Professionals workshop series, teaching procedures for training service dogs to other professional dog trainers from all over the country.
Always maintaining a priority of continuing education, Elizabeth has attended seminars and consulted with world-class leaders in the animal training world such as: Ian Dunbar, Ken Ramirez‚ Pat Miller‚ Jane Killion‚ Emma Parsons, Suzanne Clothier‚ Trish McMillan, Steve White, Martha Hoffman, Sue Sternburg, Pat Hastings, Kathy Sdao‚ Bob Bailey, Michael Shikashio and she has attended leading animal training conferences such as: Assistance Dogs International Trainers' Conference (2008), Clicker Expo (2009), The Art & Science of Animal Training Conference (2009, 2010, 2017), Animal Behavior Management Alliance Conference (2014)‚ Association of Professional Dog Trainers Conference (2016, 2018)‚ International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants Conference (2019), Aggression in Dogs Conference (2021).
Returning to her Alabama roots in 2017, Elizabeth is thrilled to share her knowledge and experience with pet and service dog owners in the North Alabama area. In addition to volunteering with Huntsville Animal Shelter, she also trains and competes in agility, obedience, herding, and nosework with her terrier mix, Kaya, and smooth-coated collie, Keegan.
- Aggressive dog training
- Board and train
- In home training
- Reactive dog training
- Service dog training
Sniffspot Alabama Top Trainer Frequently Asked Questions
How are Alabama dog trainers selected for this list?
These are the top dog trainers in Alabama as selected by broad voting from the Sniffspot community and the general public. These trainers are expert dog trainers, who received votes from their delighted customers, due to their excellent dedication to customer service, excellent results and general care they exhibit for their clients. Many have worked with thousands of dogs and are highly experienced trainers.
How can I get in touch with dog trainers?
Each of the trainer profiles contains a link to their website. You can click through to their website where you can find more contact information.
Are these Alabama dog trainers certified professionals?
Dog training is not regulated at the federal or state level, so there is no standard dog training certification and professional trainers are not required to be certified. However, certifications are important to show that a professional dog trainer has a standard of expertise to help train your dog. Each trainer’s certifications are listed on their profile.
What are the top certifications for Dog Trainers in Alabama?
Some of the top certifications in the dog training industry are CPDT- KA, IAABC, Karen Pryor Academy - KPA certification, Jean Donaldson's Academy - CTC certification and Fear Free Certification. You can review the dog trainer certifications for each specific dog trainer on their profile on this page.
What methods are used in the dog training sessions?
There are many methods for teaching dogs and a lot of disagreement about the correct training approach. All of the Alabama trainers included on this list use positive reinforcement training only, as defined by no force, fear, intimidation, or aversive methods used. This includes not using any specifically aversive approach to training or training aid, such as a prong or electronic dog training collar (also called remote dog training collar or shock collars). As for specific training programs and specialties, such as day training / doggie daycare or obedience training, you can see more information in each trainer’s profile.
Are dog training lessons in a training facility or are virtual options available?
Some dog trainers operate exclusively from a training facility, some do house calls and some offer video calls or other virtual options. There are pros and cons to each option and the most efficient behavioral training option depends on specific circumstances, for instance, what hours work best for you. A training center or training ranch can be a good option if your training plan requires facilities, training equipment or dedicated space. We recommend reaching out to the specific trainer you are interested in or browsing their website for more information.
Are dog training lessons private or in a group setting?
Every different circumstance of dog and owners may require a different setting, whether it’s housebreaking issues, anxiety issues, lack of proper socialization, food aggression or just bad habits. Each trainer has different offerings as far as whether they can offer clients a private training session or a group class. Trainers provide information about their private class and group class offerings in their profiles and you can browse their website for more information as well. It may make sense for your specific circumstance to reach out to the trainer to ask if they recommend group or private dog training classes. Some trainers also have a team of specialists that can provide even higher levels of service, or provide specialized sessions, such as pack walks.
How much does dog training in Alabama cost?
Alabama dog trainers have a wide range of costs for different services and phases of training. For instance behavioral modification that involves boarding is often more expensive than day training, and private lessons are generally more expensive than group lessons. Prices can also vary depending on specific behavioral issues. Lastly, some trainers have more overhead than others, We recommend first picking a trainer that provides the services that you are looking for, then reaching out to them to get up to date pricing.
Is training a dog good for the dog?
Yes! Training has many benefits for dogs. Whether with basic training skills or complex training techniques, going through behavior training with your dog can improve the bond that you share with them. Also, training can do a lot to improve the level of confidence enabling of a dog (and it can also help with building customer confidence!). Rather than being about exerting maximum control over them, it gives them more certainty that they understand how the world around them works. For instance, crate training can help a dog feel safe and at home in a crate vs fearful and uncertain. Dog training can teach important skills, such as leash control, potty training or a general level of obedience skills. And lastly, it’s just fun for the dog to learn life skills and for their family. Training can be very stimulating and enriching for a dog and serve them throughout their entire healthy life!
Can an aggressive dog be trained?
Yes! Any dog behavior can be worked on through training and coaching. Aggression in dogs is a serious issue, but it is also a term that is used very broadly. Many dogs that are thought to be aggressive are actually reactive, which is a different behavior altogether. A trainer can help you interpret signs of aggression, such as excessive barking, fear aggression and leash aggression, and type of aggression. If you believe you have a dog with aggressive behaviors, we recommend reaching out to one of your local top trainers to get their diagnosis and advice.
I am a Alabama dog trainer. How can I get listed here?
As long as you have a training facility or do in person training in Alabama you can be considered for this list. We update this list once per year, normally starting in January. Make sure to keep an eye on our social media and sign up for email updates with Sniffspot in order to be in the loop on the next round of nominations.
How much do dog trainers make in Alabama?
Dog trainer earnings vary widely depending on many factors, such as whether a dog trainer is an employee or owns their own full-service professional dog training business. According to ZipRecruiter, the average dog trainer salary in Alabama was $28,523 per year and $13.71 per hour. It is impossible to say how much a dog trainer can earn with a full-service professional dog training company, because the size and profitability of companies can vary widely.