What Kind of Training is Best for My Dog?
Training your canine is an important part of pet ownership. Owners often enroll their dogs in training classes for a variety of reasons, but it can be difficult to choose the right type of training for your pup and their unique situation. To make this selection process easier, here is a guide through all the different types of dog training to help you decide which ones may be useful for you and your dog!
1. Obedience training
One of the most popular types of training for dogs is obedience training. This is used to address or prevent behavioral issues such as unchecked aggression, excessive barking, and jumping.
Untrained dogs can be a nuisance in social situations, so it is important for owners to complete obedience training for their canines before their behavior gets out of control.
Owners should enroll their pup in obedience classes to learn important commands such as sit, stay, and lie down. These classes also teach your canine to come running when called, and to not jump on people or other dogs.
Obedience training should ideally begin between 8-12 weeks of age. This is when your puppy is most open to learning and can adopt healthy behaviors which they can carry over into adulthood. Many owners enroll their dogs at an older age when they have already developed poor behaviors, but this route tends to be less effective than training them at an early age.
2. Agility training
Agility training is useful for owners interested in getting their dog involved with a sport known as dog agility. In this sport, canines run across an obstacle course under the supervision of their owners. Dog agility offers a healthy outlet for hyper pets to expend their excess energy and can be a fun activity for you and your dog!
While you may be able to hire a professional to help your pooch get acquainted with agility training, many owners prefer to train their pets themselves. This usually requires equipment such as plastic collapsible tunnels, tires suspended from ropes, and wooden beams.
Owners will need to ensure their pets understand and follow basic commands such as sit, lie down, come, and stay as it will make the training process easier. Once the obstacle course has been set up, owners can guide their pooch through each challenge such as walking through tunnels or jumping over objects. Over time, you can train them to complete the course faster and compete with other dogs.
3. Behavioral training
As mentioned earlier, obedience training is geared towards young pups that have yet to learn how to behave. However, this form of training may not be suitable for older canines with behavioral problems or pets that require rehabilitation. Behavioral training may offer a solution in these situations.
Behavioral training focuses on helping canines “unlearn” bad habits such as chewing on furniture or making a mess indoors. Each of these habits requires a unique solution.
For example, if your dog has a habit of barking at strangers, behavioral training can help to redirect their attention and desensitize them to new people. While some behaviors can be corrected by owners themselves, others may require the help of a professional dog trainer.
4. Protection training
Protection training is useful for owners that want to teach their canine to guard them and their home. It typically involves training your dog to bark on-command or to bark at possible threats that approach you.
Some forms of protection training teach your dog to defend their owner in dangerous situations by physically confronting the threat. However, this step is usually reserved for guard dogs as opposed to household pets.
Protection training is often taught to breeds more susceptible to the protection skill such as German Shepherds, Rottweilers, and Doberman Pinschers. However, all dogs can learn an aspect of protection training as even smaller breeds can be very good at alerting their owner to danger.
5. Vocational training
Vocational training is a special type of training for dogs that perform important specialized jobs. Police dogs, guide dogs, and therapy dogs undergo vocational training before they are ready to help their handlers and owners. However, the exact nature of this training can vary depending on the specific duties the canine is expected to perform.
Police dogs may be required to sniff out and locate illegal substances and subdue suspects. Guide dogs may be required to guide their owners through traffic and assess dangerous situations. Therapy dogs provide support, comfort, and affection in their role to take care of their owner or different people in public places such as schools and hospitals.
Little Friends Pet Sitting & Dog Walking has offered personalized care in Charlotte, NC for over 10 years. We offer a free in-home consultation before caring for your pet in order to discuss all of your pet care needs including training and behavioral details. Beyond your pet’s unique daily routine, if you have any specific training commands or behaviors you’re currency working on, you’ll be able to provide your sitter with everything they need to know face-to-face!