5 Dog Training Tips Every Pet Owner Needs to Know in Santa Clarita, CA
Are you thinking of training your dog? Or are you bringing home a new puppy who will need to be potty trained and possibly crate trained as well? Do you find yourself feeling more than a little overwhelmed by everything you’ve read on how to train dogs?
If any of this sound familiar, then you’ve come to the right place! In the article below, you’ll find five tried and true tips for any dog training situation. These tips are intended to be used as a basic framework from which you can build more specific information and experiences as you work with your own dog.
What to Expect While Dog Training
Read through this information to get a general idea of what to expect from dog training. From there, you can dig deeper as needed and choose which skills you want to focus on with your dog, too. Find out more in the list below!
1. Treats Matter
Very few dogs turn up their noses when they’re offered a treat. Even dogs who are not commonly food motivated can often be enticed by their favorite high-reward treats, and this makes treats a great method of encouraging your dog to perform learned tasks.
Pick out a treat you know your dog will love. Training time is a great time to give your dog favorite food items she isn’t normally given, such as peanut butter or small pieces of apple slices. Whatever you choose, make sure it motivates your dog to do what you ask, and it’s sure to go a long way toward helping you train her.
2. Patience is Key
Never get impatient with your dog. If you feel like you are getting too impatient, then it’s time to take a break and get back to training another day. Dogs do not have very long attention spans, and they may become distracted from training easily. Additionally, some dogs simply don’t take to training as well as others, so it’s necessary to give them plenty of time to learn.
On a similar note, do not use negative reinforcement to try to teach your dog. Positive reinforcement and patience both can go a long way toward improving your dog’s skills in no time.
3. One Step at a Time
Although you might be tempted to try teaching your dog or new puppy several skills and abilities all at once, you’ll have far better luck if you work slowly, one step at a time. Don’t start teaching your dog to sit and then move on to another skill before she has mastered sitting on command, for example.
The same is true of puppies who are learning to go potty outside or to sleep in a crate. If you’re working on potty training and crate training, this is a lot for a young puppy to learn all at once, so don’t overwhelm your dog with more lessons just yet.
4. Practice in a Quiet, Neutral Space
If you’re trying to teach your dog some new skills or tricks, you’ll want to remove as many distractions as possible while you work with her. It’s best to go into a quiet room, shut the door, and close the curtains at the windows. This way, your dog will not be too distracted by anything going on outside.
If your dog’s attention is drawn by a household noise or movement, wait until she is fully focused on you before returning to the training session.
5. End on a Positive Note
Finally, make sure you end every training session on a positive note. Once your dog has learned a single command— “sit” is usually the first one taught, since it’s easy to learn—you can end your training session with that command. Then praise your dog with lots of love, attention, and of course, treats! She will learn to associate these positive feelings with her training sessions, which while help her train more easily.
Ending on a positive note also works well for you. You won’t feel as frustrated or negative about returning to training your dog the next day when you keep things light and positive.
Professional Dog Training Can Help
This guide is just a short list of the most important tips to keep in mind when you’re training a dog, and it only scratches the surface of what to expect. However, by following this guide and remembering the advice listed here, you’ll be more capable than ever of facing whatever your dog training experience might throw your way!
Remember, too, that you can always find quality professional dog trainers in your area to help you along the journey, too. These trainers are experienced enough to help handle a variety of issues that might arise, and they are a great resource whether you’re training an adult dog or a new puppy. Don’t be afraid to reach out Stevenson Ranch Veterinary Center at (661) 799-0655 for more information!