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Viewing a Professional Dog Trainer as an Investment Verses a Price Tag

The number one mistake I see as a Salt Lake City dog trainer, are dog owners that are focusing on the price they will pay to receive dog training.  It is much more important, in my opinion, to focus on the value that the dog owner and the dog will receive from hiring a particular dog trainer than the price tag.

Here are the disadvantages of focusing on price alone.

1.) You are disregarding the techniques that the Salt Lake City dog trainer is going to use on your dog.  Positive reinforcement is highly effective and will encourage a strong trust bond between you and your dog. Punishment based training may bring overt results, but your dog’s emotional psyche will be affected negatively.

2.) You are not considering the value or the results that you are receiving.  If you focus on just what you are paying then you maybe wasting your money especially if you didn’t even come close to reaching your obedience goals.

3.) If you are paying a low price to receive Salt Lake City dog training, this trainer may not be as invested as a trainer that has higher rates.  A trainer that has higher rates, has more money to educate himself by attending dog training seminars and further educating himself.  Also a trainer that charges higher rates has more time to invest in your personal case.  If a trainer has a low rates they are not going to be able to make a living and invest hours upon hours on your particular case.  This may limit the amount of research and personal time on the phone and e-mail that this trainer can invest in your case.

4.) When you are focused on price you may also be looking for fast results.  Training takes a large amount of time and commitment.  This means more money.  A small price may lead to very small results.

You and the Salt Lake City dog trainer you hire should focused on the value that you and your dog will receive rather than the price you are paying.

1.) Training is an investment. It is about reaching your training goals and investing into the training time that is needed to reach these obedience goals.  Training takes accountability and commitment.  A dog trainer will see themselves as helping you with this investment rather than focusing on price or discount rates.

2.) A good Salt Lake City dog trainer, will be asking you questions about the goals you are wanting to achieve.  He will be focusing on the pain that are you feeling right now.  Then he will the get clear on your goals and what success looks like for you!  If a trainer charges higher rates, he has the time and energy to invest into digging deep into your personal perspective.

3.) When you view training as an investment you are not as concerned with the number hours that it takes to reach your goals.  You are more concerned on the step by step process to reach the value and obedience you so strongly desire!

4.) The training techniques that the trainer uses is extremely important.  When focusing on price alone this isn’t even considered.  If a trainer uses punishment techniques this could take you farther from your obedience goals.  Punishment based training methods do increase the chance of creating fear or aggressive behavior.  Positive reinforcement training is the way to go!

5.) Also, as a dog owner you will be more invested into your results if you pay more money.  Our minds do value items and services that we have paid a higher amount of money toward.  If you pay for cheap training, you may not be as motivated to invest the time and energy that is needed to create the results that you want.

We hope this supports you in finding the best possible dog trainer to reach your obedience goals. There are many positive reinforcement dog trainers.  Salt Lake City and surrounding areas has a website for professional reward-based dog trainers. Our Salt Lake City dog training company highly focuses on the value and the results you will receive!

You Turn!

What issues and pain are you currently dealing with your dog? What are your training goals and what does success look for you? How much value would you receive in hiring a professional dog training to support you in reaching your goals?


Johanna Teresi, Professional Dog Trainer and Owner of Four Legged Scholars LLC Dog Training, Salt Lake City

Blog Archives

Britnie Sorensen
Britnie Sorensen
18:11 06 Apr 24
This is our second round of training with Johanna! Our Bullmastiff Abbi is different from our previous dogs, and we knew Johanna would be able to help us. We reached out and were in excellent hands! Johanna was able to redirect our training efforts, majority of sessions were held virtually and supported with videos of us training Abbi. We will keep using Johanna no matter where life takes us. Her love and compassion for our puppy, and us, come through in every interaction. We are in a much better place and understanding of Abbi after working with Johanna!
Roberta Bonnell
Roberta Bonnell
01:37 24 Mar 24
My Australian Shepard had moderate separation anxiety and Johanna was able to help me get him to a point where I can see him being able to be home alone before the end of the year! Very grateful for all of her training expertise.
Karen Mara
Karen Mara
21:19 21 Jan 24
I recently met with Johanna for help with my rambunctious teenager, Roger. We worked on coming when called, leash walking, and staying calm around other dogs when on leash. After two sessions, Roger made huge improvements, and he continues to improve as we practice on our own. Johanna really understands dogs and is very good at communicating with people. She knows how to make dog training fun. I've worked with other trainers, and Johanna is by far the best.
Wendy Nighswonger
Wendy Nighswonger
18:47 08 Jul 23
I have known Johanna for 13 years. She has helped me with several dogs, but she recently helped me train my new black lab puppy, Raven. I have moved to another state so all of my training with Raven was done online via Zoom. I believe that the one-on-one training I received through Zoom was more personalized and thorough, especially with the way Johanna placed every ounce of training and recommendation on a board through an app that I can refer back when I need. Johanna is very intuitive and knew when stress was on overload for me, therefore tailoring my training for that day around making Raven feel good while simultaneously taking my stress load down. Johanna has years of experience and while her knowledge is a gold mine, it is her gentle patience and love for her clients that make this training so perfect. I would hire her again and again. She is a true canine whisperer. Thank you Four Legged Scholars and thank you Johanna!Wendy N. ~ Oregon
Christina Richards
Christina Richards
18:13 10 Feb 23
Johanna at Four Legged Scholars is great. She tailored my program to fit my needs and was easy to work with. My puppy responded very well to what she taught us together over Zoom. She's patient and understanding. We're still utilizing the things we learned and he's a well-behaved puppy. Thank you!
Karyl Bennion
Karyl Bennion
19:49 05 Feb 23
I adopted Frida as a companion that I could travel, walk and hike with. She loves to hike and walk but pulled on the leash and jumped at distractions. I learned how to be calm and talk in a non threatening way to her. She responds to this much better than yelling at her. The click and treat method that I learned works so well in getting her attention as well as the "target" training. Frida has improved greatly with these methods. I will continue the knowledge I have learned with her. I did the live on-line training and it was very successful. I am so happy we signed up.
Rachel Giddings
Rachel Giddings
02:57 12 Dec 22
My dog was abused in his previous home and has always been afraid of strangers. I wanted to train him and help him to be more confident, but I didn't know how to do that if he was afraid of his trainer.Doing online training with Joanna was perfect for both of us! Joanna helped me learn how to read my dog and understand his triggers. We then worked together on BAT training, which taught him self-soothing behaviors and showed him how to confidently and safely handle difficult situations. I never thought I would have fun doing homework with my dog, but he and I benefited from it tremendously. Working with Joanna via Zoom was perfect for my dog and me.
Shawn McMillen
Shawn McMillen
02:09 24 Oct 22
My 2 year old doodle was struggling with people walking by the house, barking incessantly, tugging on walks, improving recall when off leash and , for me, how to be a better more engaging human for my buddy. The personalized, online sessions exceeded all my expectations. The review of video homework sessions was awesome. We saw improvement in each of the priority areas and I developed real, tangible, lasting skills/tools to be a better pet person. Thanks Johanna!
Courtney Daniels
Courtney Daniels
19:59 12 Sep 22
12 years ago I got a puppy and quickly realized I was in over my head. I wanted to have a good, well trained dog, but I was overwhelmed by methods and my puppies behavior.I joined the four legged scholars puppy training with my little 4 month old puppy Bowie, and saw immediate understanding with the clicker work. It gave us this incredibly ability to communicate and she excelled.We went on to take several courses that established general obedience, helped me turn a STRONG leash puller into a loose leash master (I took that course twice because it was a huge issue for us and I NEEDED help and reassurance from Johanna that I could do it) as well as skill class, that helped solidify a beautiful relationship between us. Learning clicker shaping allowed me to confidently teach complex and unique commands on my own as well, like waving hello and closing kitchen cabinets.My Bowie has climbed to the top of mountains for me staying right by my side never pulling on her leash. I've targeted her off trails to protect her from startling a mama moose and her baby. She's loved on my kids without jumping on them and knocking them over. She's allowed the neighbor girl who has always had a fear of dogs to walk her without pulling at whatever pace she was comfortable with. She shows off with all her fun little tricks Johanna gave me the tools to train my dog into an amazing companion.I feel so lucky to have found your training program and to have the relationship I do with my Bowie girl. These courses have a profound and lasting impact on the lives of families and their pups, thank you for that gift.
Megan Pond-Maxwell
Megan Pond-Maxwell
16:02 18 May 22
I am so grateful to have found Johanna. She was with us every step of the way as we tackled separation anxiety training and reactivity training with Daisy, my Mini Australian Shepherd. As a first time dog owner, I felt at a loss about how to manage my very vocal, scared, stressed, yet loveable dog. She had all of the typical puppy behavior, such as jumping, nipping/biting, leash pulling, as well as barking. On top of that, she was also not able to be alone without feeling terrified, as well as vocally and behaviorally reactive to other dogs, adults, and kids. I felt completely overwhelmed and Johanna created programs that felt manageable and doable. Each training session, I felt understood and empowered working with Johanna. Over the course of our programs, I felt that we accomplished the steps of the training process, strengthened the dog-human relationship, and increased my own awareness of my dog's emotional cues so that I could better work with her. My dog can now be on her own feeling relaxed and playful, her problematic puppy behaviors have significantly improved, she can walk on her leash loosely, listen to commands, and she can better tolerate other adults, dogs, and children as compared to where we first started. Our online experience was very positive. I look forward to continually implementing the tools and skills we have learned along the way to move forward in a positive direction that strengthens our human-animal bond and reduces distressing behaviors and emotional stress and overwhelm. Thank you Four Legged Scholars! I highly, highly recommend working with Johanna.
Emily Harward
Emily Harward
03:36 24 Apr 22
Our rescue dog is sweet and playful with us, but her behavior around other dogs and people could be unpredictable. She would act aggressively around adults (lunging and barking), and would sometimes be aggressive toward other dogs. We chose to do online training with Johanna. I was skeptical that online training would work, but it ended up being very effective. Johanna taught me the skills I needed to train my dog, and provided resources that I could use throughout the week as I worked on the assigned tasks. I was also able to send her videos of me working with my dog, so she could provide feedback and help me improve. Johanna personalized the program and made changes as needed to ensure that I could meet my goals. Since working with Four Legged Scholars, neighbors have commented on how much better behaved my dog is, and I don't have to worry about her lunging and barking at people or other dogs when we are out for a walk anymore. We still have a lot of work to do with our dog, and I feel like doing the personalized online sessions with Johanna has given me the knowledge, and resources to continue training my dog.
Angel Lanoy
Angel Lanoy
15:22 16 Jun 21
We have a large family, including three big dogs. So when our biggest dog Obi, the Rottweiler, started showing aggression we panicked. The vet suggested we put him down after an experience in the office. He then said we could also try training and gave us Johanna's business card. Just a phone call with her made us feel like there was hope. We signed up to do the online sessions with FourLeggedScholars. The process from the first contact to the last was well oiled and very helpful. Obi gets to stay with our family now and we feel like meting with her has given us the guidance and knowledge we need to keep our family, friends and him safe. I was a tad worried about doing the training online, but it really worked out great and we were able to fit such a big task into our busy schedules. I feel like she set us up for success from the very beginning. Thank you.
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  1. ling wong

    Very valid points to consider, and see it as a long term investment. thanks!

    • fourleggedscholars

      Awesome! You are welcome! One of my clients spelled it out clearly. She said “I have friends that have spent $300 on a new coach that their dog has chewed up. I would have rather saved that money and invested it into dog training instead.” The money and emotional pain that we save ourselves from by investing into dog training is huge! Of course that depends on the issues you are having with your dog. However, I find this to be true for most anyone that is actually wanting to hire a professional trainer 🙂

  2. Linda Ursin

    The issues I have with my dog is food obsession, that he stops listening when he doesn’t want to, or when another person is around, and the nagging he does sometimes. He’s gotten a lot calmer with age, but he’s still a handful. I’m thinking of starting him on agility, to get some energy out of him.

  3. fourleggedscholars

    I am hearing that your dog could use support in learning leave it and listening better when distractions are around 🙂 What are your training goals and what does success look for you? How much value would you receive in hiring a professional dog training to support you in reaching your goals?