Man training his Dalmatian pet

Training your dog has many purposes, including keeping them safe, helping them behave around others, and building skills and confidence. Because they learn by association, it is essential to establish clear lines of communication so they know exactly what you expect of them. With patience, time, and absolute consistency, dog training is fun, straightforward, and rewarding. We know the importance of dog training to both people and dogs alike, and are happy to offer some basic tips to get started. 

Positive Reinforcement

Successful and effective dog training hinges on rewarding the behavior you want to see more of, and ignoring behaviors you want to stop. We know it sounds difficult, and it can be at first.

Ignoring bad behavior shows your dog that they won’t get any attention from, say, jumping up on strangers or eating your slippers. They’ll eventually learn how great it feels to please you because they receive effusive praise, head scratches, and maybe a treat or two when they do something right. 

Dog training can also employ a handheld clicker that you use when they demonstrate a positive behavior. This can be used in tandem with tasty treats or without to help your dog connect the sound with the good behavior. 

No Room To Be Vague

Whether you’re just starting out or your dog knows several commands already, the key to success is clarity. Dog training must be simple, clear, and concise. If they are confused about what you want you aren’t going to get a good result. Stay focused on simplicity and consistency, and watch your dog easily put two and two together. 

Other helpful dog training tips include:

  • Reduce distractions
  • Keep sessions short
  • Stay positive and have fun
  • Don’t show frustration or irritation
  • Stop when your dog shows anxiety
  • End on a positive note

Please do not scold or punish your dog if they lack interest in dog training or make mistakes. This is a lifelong process that should be enjoyable for everyone involved. If your dog continues to struggle with unwanted behaviors like aggression, barking, or has trouble housetraining, they may benefit from private sessions with an animal behaviorist. 

Dog Training for the Win!

Dog training typically begins with basic obedience. Learning commands like sit, stay, down, leave it, and more can not only protect your dog from potential harm, but helps them enjoy certain freedoms like walking off-leash (in designated areas), attending doggie daycare, or time outside their crate when left alone.

Staying safe and controlled are the essence of basic dog training. Once commands are fully understood, dogs can graduate to all levels of training, including agility. But perhaps the best aspect of dog training is the chance to get to know your best buddy and provide an outlet for them to show how smart and clever they are.

Please call us at (913) 681-2818 with any questions about dog training. Our team is always happy to help at Blue Valley Animal Hospital