Student of the Month
Dog Trainer Randi Harris
Randi Harris lives in Maggie Valley, North Carolina, with her husband. After taking a part-time job with a doggie daycare, Randi found that working with dogs made her happier. She wanted to work with them more than just a couple of days a week, so she made the decision to enroll in Animal Behavior College to become a certified dog trainer.
How did you hear about the Dog Trainer Program and what convinced you to become certified?
I came across ABC while researching certification programs. The reason I ended up choosing ABC was it offered an extensive learning program and it was the only one I found that included a business-building and hands-on training portion.
What has been your most rewarding moment during your externship?
Being able to teach a real class and feel fully informed and equipped to answer questions and give sound, accurate advice. Helping someone with confidence is the best feeling you can have at work.
What will be the secret to your success in the pet industry as a dog trainer?
Practice, practice, practice. I’m a firm believer that experience is the best teacher, so that’s how I plan on cultivating my success.
What was/is the biggest challenge you faced during your externship and how did you overcome it?
In the middle of my volunteer hours, I got really sick and couldn’t get out of bed for a week straight. I found out it was because I was expecting a child. Trying to train dogs when you can’t stop being sick, can’t lift anything heavy or walk 30 feet without feeling winded was definitely quite the challenge. However, I overcame it by doing really simple work and some days all I did was tend to the really new shy dogs and cuddled with them for a while.
What has your experience been like in the ABC Dog Obedience Instructor Training Program?
My experience in the Dog Trainer Program has been nothing but positive. My program manager and mentor trainer are great.
Are you currently employed in another field? If yes, what do you do?
During my studies and research of the dog training field, I thought it might be nifty to brush up on my selling skills. So I took a computer sales position in a consumer electronics store. It was really good to get used to overcoming objections, pitching your products and benefits, and just giving advice to people in general.
Which dog breed best describes you and why?
Probably a Golden Retriever. I can get along with just about anyone. I love a hard day’s work, but only when it ends with cuddling on the couch.