Training your dog is a great way to build a relationship with your pooch and have some much needed bonding time! However, training your dog can be challenging, especially when you need help knowing where to start and how to efficiently and effectively train your dog without causing them to get confused or uninterested.
Top 5 tips on how to train a dog
1. Be patient
One of the most crucial aspects of dog training is maintaining patience. Dogs learn at different rates, so it's important never to scold or punish them for taking longer to grasp a concept.
2. Minimise distractions
Distractions can hinder your dog's focus during training sessions, prolonging the learning process. You should opt for a quiet area in your home to teach new tricks, ensuring your dog can give you their undivided attention. If you still struggle with gaining or holding your dog's attention, implement training treats with a higher value.
3. Start training with a calm dog
Commence training sessions when your dog is calm, such as after a walk or playtime. A calm dog is more receptive to learning commands, making it easier for them to understand and retain new information. If your dog is overly energetic, they may struggle to absorb the training effectively.
Above all, remember to enjoy the training sessions with your dog. Your enthusiasm and positive energy will create a more enjoyable atmosphere, leading to better learning experiences for both you and your dog. Celebrate small victories and reward your dog's progress with some delicious training treats, fostering a positive and supportive training environment.
Benefits of training your dog
There are many benefits to training your dog. Even teaching them the basic commands such as 'sit' and 'lay down' not only benefits your dog but benefits you as the owner.
Here is a list of benefits of training your dog:
Training provides you and your dog an excellent opportunity to develop a strong bond. You establish clear communication and mutual understanding through training, fostering a deep connection between you and your furry companion.
Once your dog has learnt the basic commands, these commands ensure that your dog behaves well and can respond to your instructions when needed. Trusting that your dog will respond to your commands gives your dog more freedom whilst promoting safety at home and in public spaces.
Training exposes your dog to different environments, people, and animals, facilitating socialisation. Socialised dogs are generally more comfortable and confident in various situations, reducing the likelihood of fear, anxiety, or aggression.
Control and management
Training empowers you to have better control over your dog's behaviour. This control is especially crucial in potentially dangerous situations, such as when encountering traffic, other aggressive animals, or hazards at home.
Is my dog too old to learn tricks?
It is commonly believed that you can not train older dogs to do new tricks. This is not entirely accurate! Dogs of any age can learn new tricks and behaviours with the right approach and consistency. But having realistic expectations and respecting your dog's abilities and limitations is essential.
Training an older dog can be incredibly beneficial since acquiring new skills can enhance their quality of life. As your dog gets older, their physical ability will eventually start to decrease due to natural ageing or other reasons. This emphasises the importance of training your older dog as it is a form of mental stimulation for them. Keeping their brain sharp and active will help to tire your dog out.
It's crucial to understand that dogs have a different way of thinking compared to humans. They simply seek happiness and safety. Recognising this, take the time to teach your dog using methods that align with their natural instincts and behaviour. According to One Mind Dogs, dogs learn quicker through hand commands than vocal commands.
Dogs respond to reinforcements
Owners inadvertently reinforce all kinds of undesirable behaviours, such as excessive barking, jumping up or begging at the table. Leaving food within their reach on the counter, for example, teaches them that it's worth their while to investigate. Proper dog training involves understanding the role of positive reinforcement and rewarding your dog at the right moments.
Overcoming training challenges
Training your dog can sometimes be challenging, but simple solutions are usually available. When you encounter difficulties, taking a step back and assessing your approach is helpful. Analyse each step of the training process and try to identify where things go awry. Consider watching videos from professional dog trainers on platforms like YouTube, making comparisons to ensure you're not missing any crucial elements or making mistakes.
We asked Skipper's customers what their top training treat picks were
Overall, it was evident that smaller training treats were favoured as they allowed for frequent rewards during training sessions. Moreover, the enticing aroma of our treats proved to be a key factor in capturing and maintaining your dog's attention, resulting in more seamless training experiences.
We appreciate everyone's input, as it helps us continue providing treats that cater to your preferences and your furry companions' needs.
Our Dog & Puppy Training Treats have been incredibly popular since Skipper's began! These small training treats are crafted from a blend of steam-cooked Salmon, Trout, and White Fish, with a composition of 80% fish (comprising 48% Salmon, 24% Trout, and 8% White Fish), along with wholesome ingredients like potato and sweet potato. Each 500g bag is packed with over 1,000 bite-sized treats, ensuring an ample supply to support your training sessions.
How many training treats can I feed my dog per day?
The quantity of training treats you can feed your dog in a day depends on your dog's size, activity level and the treat you are using. Each of our training treats will showcase a feeding guide on the product page. This guide will tell you the recommendations according to your dog's size. Alternatively, you can take a look at our blog on how many treats you can feed for each of our products.
Is it ok to train a dog with treats?
Yes! In fact, many dog owners widely use treats in training. The treats help to motivate and reward your dog for correctly performing a desired behaviour or a step towards the behaviour. The dog treats used are changed to match the difficulty of the training. Dog owners typically use treats such as Dog & Puppy Training Treats for lower to average training difficulty, whereas, for recall and more challenging training tasks, dog owners will use a high-value treat such as Dried Sprats.
Alternatively, some dogs are not food motivated. Therefore some dog owners lean towards using toys and praise to motivate and reward their dogs.
What are high-value rewarding treats?
High-value rewarding treats can typically have a strong and alluring aroma to help maintain and gain your dog's focus. These treats are incredibly appealing to your dog and should create excitement to boost your dog's motivation in the training sessions. Just like your everyday training treats, you will reward your dog with a high-value reward when they have correctly performed a desired behaviour, such as getting your dog to listen when they are distracted by various other exciting things.