Obedience training is always ideally started when your dog is a puppy. Puppy classes will teach you and your pup basic obedience commands, such as sit, down, come, and stay, as well as giving you tips and tricks for housebreaking, crate training and breaking bad behaviors such as chewing and jumping.
Suppose you have a dog that’s no longer a puppy? It’s never too late to get obedience training started. Ideally your dog should have some type of training throughout it’s life. Here are some quick easy signs that your adult dog may need a refresher course.
- Walking your dog on a leash, is like a full-body workout.Walking your dog should be a pleasant, relaxing experience for both you and your dog, not one where you’re holding on for dear life while your dog plows ahead like he’s attached to a dog sled. One emphasis indog obedience classes at all ages is to teach loose leash walking. Imagine – walking along the street, you and Fido and not needing an iron grip on his leash. It may seem impossible, especially if you’ve dealt with the behavior a long time, but it’s a common problem that dog trainers see and one that is surprisingly simple to correct under the right training.
- Your dog jumps on people. Remember when he/she was a puppy? Wasn’t it cute the way she jumped up on Aunt Sally everytime she came over? Well, at 15 pounds with a puppy-face it may have been cute. At 50 pounds or more – not so much. This is a habit that must be broken. Not only is it not cute, but it can be dangerous. Your dog may be the sweetest dog around but if he jumps on someone and knocks them down and possibly injures them you both could be in a lot of trouble.
- Your dog chews the furniture. Chewing as a puppy is a natural part of puppyhood. New teeth means your young dog needs to chew. However it’s very important that you start instilling what’s acceptable to chew on and what’s not. Your dog is intelligent enough to know the difference. They are looking to you for boundaries. A qualified trainer can give you tips and tricks on how to curb this behavior.
- Your dog barks. All the time. At everything. Of course we expect dogs to bark. However constant barking, especially at random things (the TV, the cars going down the street, the birds in the backyard) can indicate that your dog might be reactive. This is another issue that qualified dog trainers are accustomed to.
- Your dog does not obey you. You tell him to sit and he wanders off to another room. You yell for him to come while he’s outside and he runs the other direction. This is a serious one. It’s imperative for your dogs health & safety that he has respect for you and obeys your commands. An experienced dog trainer can evaluate the situation and help you see what you need to change to get your dog to listen to you. This step could just save his life!
Find a qualified trainer (iCare K-9 can help!) and make an appointment for an evaluation. It’s the first and best step towards a long, healthy and loving relationship between you and your canine friend!