Suppose you just rescued a dog or welcomed a new puppy, but her behavior isn’t quite up to par with where you’d like it to be. Maybe she needs help with crate training, or perhaps she’s struggling with basic commands. But how do you train a dog? Whatever the issues, we’ve got some training tips for you.
Our experts have written about dog and puppy training extensively and have personal experience with various training methods. Dog training isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach, and some dogs need help learning how to do or not do a specific task. Below are some options to consider for training your dog.
- Should I Get A Trainer?
- Tools To Use Or Not Use For Training
- House Training & Potty Training Dogs
- Specialty Training (Obedience, Agility & More)
The first thing you’ll want to decide is whether you want to do the training yourself at home or if you’d prefer to hire a dog trainer to help. You may want to take a whack at training your dog yourself, and if that’s the case, then go ahead and jump to our next section about tools to use for training.
However, if you’d like some guidance for training, you may want to consider using a different technique like an app, signing up for an online course, or hiring a dog trainer. You can also opt for both.
Arguably the most common method to train a dog is through positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement means giving your dog a treat or petting her when she performs the desired action. This causes her to associate the action with her reward and makes her want to perform the action more often.
There’s a lot of repetition during the training process, so it’s best to give your pup small, lower-calorie treats (so she eats them quickly and doesn’t put on extra pounds). This is where training treats can be beneficial and effective with teaching tricks and other actions. You might also want to try something healthy like chopped up baby carrots or celery instead of treats.
Pro Tip: One way to cut down on calories is to train before mealtime using a portion of their allocated food instead of treats. That way, they aren’t putting on extra calories. And by doing it before they eat, they most likely will be hungry already. Think of it as a little doggy appetizer.
However, some pet parents find that treat training can result in the dog only doing the action if she sees a treat in your hand. I found this to be the case with my dog, Sally. This led me to research how to train my dog without treats, and it worked well for us.
Another tool to help you with training your dog is an electronic collar. E-collars can assist you in training your dog, whether you choose to use treats or not.
Keep in mind: Shouting or snapping at your dog is not effective when training. Yelling and negative actions not only confuse your dog, but it can damage your relationship with her. Whenever your pup misbehaves, replace his or her action with a positive one. For instance, if they chew on a sock, remove the sock and give them a toy instead.
Whether you’re bringing home a puppy or an older dog, they’ll need help acclimating to indoor living. House training a dog can have moments of frustration, but we’ve got a couple of articles that can help you feel confident and knowledgeable in training your dog efficiently.
Our article dedicated to housebreaking and teaching your dog how to be potty trained is excellent for new puppy parents. As for older dogs you welcome into your home, we hope you’ll find our article about house training older dogs to be informative. Age matters for training, and helping your dog adjust and learn how you’d like her to behave inside the house can lead to a happy life for both you and your pup.
Crate training is an element to house training a dog that can be a little more frustrating for pet parents, so we’ve dedicated an entire article to that subject matter. The article includes some steps to crate train your dog as well as crates for you to consider using for your dog.
Is there a specific type of training you’re trying to achieve? Perhaps you want to teach your dog basic obedience commands, or maybe you want to work on agility training to help exercise your dog. No matter the training you desire, we’ve got you covered.
Does your dog have some aggressive tendencies? We can help you learn how to assist your dog in living a happier life with our aggressive dog training article.
Finally, do you need your dog to perform a specific task for you? Perhaps you need help due to a disability, or maybe you need your dog to provide comfort to you. Learn more about service and therapy dogs and how they can help you in your day-to-day life.
Consistency Is Key
Remember to be consistent with your dog training. Set boundaries, use verbal commands, or utilize training tools to help turn your disobedient dog into an obedient and happy dog. Dogs don’t know what they don’t know. Set a positive example and establish yourself as the pack leader from the get-go. And above all, be patient and remain calm, so your dog isn’t afraid or scared during the training process.
Do you have any dog training tips to share?