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What is the Cost of Dog Aggression Rehabilitation?


If you are asking yourself this question, firstly I would like to apologize that the need has arisen to contemplate it. An incident or altercation with your dog is never what we as trainers would want it to come to - no trainer does aggression rehabilitation because we love it. It is a necessity to help give owners peace of mind, and dogs more chances at a fear-free lifestyle. Aggression rehabilitation is no walk in the park, even for the most established trainer. Each dog is different and the root of aggression can drastically change what measures a trainer has to take to protect you, the dog, themselves, and those around them. So that begs the question - what does it really cost? Why should it be considered?


Levels of Severity


When looking at the initial cost, the first thing anyone should look at is the level of severity of the aggression. Trainers will need to know what level of biting your dog does from a nip to a large bite. What triggers your dog? Do they only go after other dogs? Do they go after people? What are the situations? Have they gone after you? These are all very important questions when considering what a price for rehabilitation might be.


A group of stray dogs being fed by a person

Dog Aggression

Usually one of the easier triggers to address this will typically tip the lower end of the price scales. Keep in mind, this is not belittling the severity of dog aggression, but in a human-centric world - a dog that doesn’t bite people is much less of a risk to the general public. Finding the trigger and the root cause of dog aggression poses less risk to the trainer willing to take on the task of rehabilitation. A dog a trainer can comfortably handle is a dog that is dog aggressive - and is typically more willing to.


Human Aggression

Finding a trainer who will work with human aggression can be more difficult to say the least. The trainer who does is willing to put their body on the line - even if they have the most advanced techniques there is a risk handling any dog with human aggression. The price for a human aggressive dog will vary drastically depending on severity, who they go after, and if they redirect onto the owners. Be prepared to pay a high dollar amount if your dog happens to tick all three boxes - and bless your soul for trying to find a solution.

A child laying on a dog on the sofa

This price may also depend on the trainer (every trainer charges different base rates, but what they deem as high risk may depend on who you speak to) - a dog that reacts towards children or the elderly may be considered a higher risk than one that goes after men. The health risk and permanent damage potential are exponentially higher in those cases. Likewise, a dog who reacts towards their owner, or even simply redirects when reacting towards another stimulus, will heighten that price.

Redirection poses a huge risk to trainers, since the dog is in such a heightened state of mind that it is harming the family that it is supposed to be loving.  This means even with a bonded trainer, the risk of them turning around and causing damage is a possibility that can’t be ignored or pushed under the rug. Know that many trainers won’t work with a dog that redirects or reacts towards their owners, and if you find one that does - prepare to pay for it.


What is the Cost? What is the Benefit?


Knowing what boxes your dog ticks will help you prepare for the hefty price that you will likely be paying. Most aggression rehabilitation comes hand-in-hand with advanced obedience. Obedience builds trust and bonding and we need that foundation before we address triggers. Preparing to pay anywhere from $4k to higher depending on the range of problems is usually a safe bet. If you find a trainer cheaper - you’re either really lucky, the trainer really likes you, or there is a catch. The price may seem like highway robbery, but keep in mind - aggression rehabilitation is a large undertaking with many risks involved. If it is in-home, a trainer is willingly putting their own safety on the line whenever they step into your house. For board and trains, they are putting risk on themselves and any potential kennel workers they have - they likely have systems in place but a risk is a risk.

The benefits to look forward to during and after training, is peace of mind. While no trainer should ever guarantee “fixing” your dog’s aggression, we can reduce the risk - and give you the tools to help maintain it as well. No trainer's goal should be to fix aggression, stating so would be a disservice to you and the people around you. However, we can give you the solutions, the tools, and the foundation to show you how to handle any potential situation and mitigate any triggering events so that you and those around you are safe.


An aggressive dog is not a lost cause, but aggression rehabilitation does come with a price. You will have to rebuild trust with your dog and learn to advocate for them when you bring them out into the real world - full of triggers and people who won’t give your dog the space that they may need. At Final Call Dog Training, we strive to give you back that connection with your dog that reactivity may have severed. Reach out for a consultation today to let us help you get back on a healthy track with your dog and give them the best chance at a normal life

a pitbull dog laying under a table

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