January is Train Your Dog Month! If your canine companion hasn’t finished his petucation yet, this is a perfect time for it. While you don’t necessarily have to teach Fido advanced commands, he should know basic obedience commands. Sit, Stay, Heel, Come, and Lay Down are the five most crucial. Down and Leave It (or Drop It) are also very helpful. Of course, it will take time and patience to get your adorable student through school. Read on as a local Seminole, FL veterinarian offers some helpful dog training tips.
It’s important to make training sessions enjoyable for Fido. After all, this is a time for you to bond with your pooch, and improve communication between you. Only work with your pup when you’re in a good mood. Otherwise, your canine pal may pick up bad vibes, and decide he doesn’t like school. That’s the last thing you want!
Sit is usually the easiest command for dogs to pick up, so it’s a good place to start. Teach Fido one thing at a time, and don’t move on until he’s mastered his current lesson.
Fido is super cute when he’s enjoying getting praise and compliments. He’s also pretty adorable when he scores a treat. Positive reinforcement (food) is a great way to reinforce your four-legged friend’s training. Just stick with smaller portions. You don’t want to overfeed your furry student!
Fido doesn’t understand the nuances between slightly different phrases. Don’t confuse him by saying ‘Sit’ one day and ‘Sit down right now’ the next. Use the same words or phrases every time.
Dogs have pretty short attention spans, except when it comes to food and squirrels. If Fido’s lessons are too long, he’ll start losing interest after a while. Usually about 15 minutes at a time is plenty.
We always recommend sticking with positive reinforcement. Avoid things that use negative reinforcement, such as shock collars.
Our canine friends are all unique individuals. Some are just easier to train than others. If you’re having a hard time training Fido, and/or are dealing with behavioral issues, enlist a professional. It will be well worth your while!
As your local Seminole, FL veterinary clinic, we are dedicated to offering great care. Please feel free to contact us anytime!