A lot of people ask me what is the best way to train their dog. In this article I'm going to address that question and give you some answers to those commonly asked questions.
1. I have a small dog is training really necessary? Certainly every dog should be trained so it knows the rules of the house and it also established you as the master. Just as important as training is socialization and you have until the dog is 5 months old to get it done.
2. Can dog training be done at home rather than a group class? Absolutely! In fact I have found that in-home lessons are much better than a group class. It works best because your dog isn't distracted by other dogs and the strange surroundings.
3. What is the proper age to start obedience training? The best age to train a dog is 16 weeks. At that point their minds are like little sponges and they have not developed a bunch of bad habits.
4. How important is it to train my dog? It is very important. As I mentioned earlier it establishes you as the master. Without proper training you will probably have a dog that is out of control with a bunch of very annoying bad habits. However with a nicely trained dog you will be able to enjoy it for it's entire life.
5. Do all breeds train the same? That is a simple answer, no. Some dogs are just easier to train than others depending on what your dogs breed was bred for. However one thing that I am happy to share with you is the fact that I have never seen a dog that could not be trained. Some dogs take longer and some dogs require a bit more work but they are all trainable.
6. My dog failed out of his group obedience class, is there still hope? Yes there is. Again I have never seen a dog that could not be trained; however I have seen a lot of people who simply don't take the time to train their dog. To train your dog you need to work with it at least once a day for a simple 15 minute session. Twice a day is even better. Repetition is the #1 principle of dog training.
Of course I am asked a lot of questions when it comes to dogs, however these 6 are probably the ones I am asked most often.
If you will take the time to socialize, train and exercise your dog you will have a furry friend that you can enjoy for life.
Wayne Booth is owner of Canine Behavior Specialists, http://www.CanineBehaviorSpecialists.com in Nashville, TN where he helps people train their dogs and solve behavior problems. Wayne has been teaching people how to become Professional Dog Trainers since 1990 and he is the Training Director of the Canine Behavior Specialists Network, http://www.K9-University.com.
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