For first-time pet owners, training their canine friend can seem overwhelming.  Just like a child, you want your pet to learn basic behaviors for the home and in public settings to keep them and others safe.  The basics can go from having your pet sit still to performing playful tricks to house training.  It is essential that dog owners have a commitment to training and an awareness of the time and effort it takes to train their four-legged pets.  Training a pet comes with plenty of challenges, and the degree of training difficulty varies depending on the breed of dog.  But don’t despair, there are ways in which dog training can be manageable despite the challenges. Here are effective tips to consider when training a pet dog.

Name your dog: Quickly find the right name for your dog and stick to it.  Dogs need an identity and need to know when you are addressing them.  Learning their name can be comforting for your dog and help them become part of the family.  A name helps your first training sessions run smoothly. Dogs are very sensitive creatures, and they are more likely to react to your commands when they hear their name called with clarity and authority. The repetition of a dog’s name during training ensures that they remain engaged and present while also establishing their identities.

Enforce house rules: Depending on where you live, it’s vital that your dog adheres to whatever house rules you have in place.  Your pet is part of the family, but they don’t set the rules.  If they did, humans would not be happy with the results.  Your dog’s presence cannot disrupt the home environment. If there are certain areas where your dog is not allowed, then you must ensure that such places in your home are securely locked which guarantees the safety of your dog and that of your property.

Spend quality time:  Dogs don’t like the owners to ignore them.  They are pack animals, and the owner becomes their pack leader.  When the leader doesn’t address them or touch them for extended periods of time, they feel unloved. It is harder for you to train your pet if you are never around them or your time at home is minimal. Make a commitment to spend plenty of time with your dog, especially during the first few weeks and months in your home.  If you adopt your pet from a shelter, understand that they have already been abandoned once and fear it has happened again when you are not around. Give your companion comfort through your presence and interaction with them.

Provide a safe space: You want to make sure that your pet is safe and sound during periods of rest. It is your responsibility to designate a space in your home where your dog can sleep in comfort. Your dog’s private space must be agreeable and provides no visual or auditory discomfort for your pet. Some owners prefer to crate their dogs while out of the house and while they sleep. It is a personal choice for the pack leader because they are the human mom and dad to the pet.  Even if it sounds harsh, believe it or not, a dog loves to go to their space and area when they are tired or just want solitude.  It is a big comfort for them.

Discourage rebellious behavior: There will be times when dogs will rebel during the early stages of training. Rebellion is healthy, but you must be firm at discouraging your dog from acting out when you train them to follow your commands. Make it a point to reward your dog with special treats when he or she manages to follow your training instructions. Don’t reward them for bad behavior.

Love them and have fun and remember they love you even more.

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