• Like us on
  • Follow us on
  • Follow us on
  • Follow us on

5 Essential Dog Training Tips

By David Loneragan | Dated May 25, 2015

Dog training is a huge part of owning a dog – a trained dog is a pleasure to be with and quickly becomes a valuable member of the family! Dogs do not naturally ‘know’ how to behave in a way that is acceptable in our society, so we must teach them. It is a skill that both owner and dog learn together. Our dogs are keen to please us – so if they are not doing as you ask, you may not be using language and commands they understand. Once trained, walking and playing with a dog that is controlled can provide us with a lot of enjoyment.

When should I start training my dog?

Training your dog should begin as soon as they arrive, whether it be a puppy or an adult dog. You must decide the ground rules beforehand and stick to them. It is much better to prevent behaviour problems than to have to deal with them later on. For puppies, you should attend a puppy socialisation class taught by experienced, qualified trainers. Puppies are socialised which is very important for their development and owners are taught basic dog training tips. For a dog of any age it can be very helpful to join a training class for guidance, support and socialisation.

puppy school northern beaches, dog training northern beaches, puppy preschool north shore, puppy training north shore, puppy school north shore

Training your dog should begin as soon as they arrive.

What is the most important training?

Some basic skills that teach your dog appropriate behaviours are:

  1. House training: Dogs who do not learn where to toilet may find themselves relegated to the backyard! Being consistent and regular with this is the key
  2. Socialisation with dogs and people: Best done in a park and regularly from an early age
  3. Walk nicely on a lead: A dog that learns to walk nicely on a lead is easier to exercise and makes walks more enjoyable
  4. Come when called: This enables your dog to safely run free at the off leash park
  5. Teach your dog to “Leave it”: Important at meal time and with bones so you can take something away from them without any aggression. It teaches your dog that you are the boss
  6. Sit, stay, down: Very important for road safety

What is the best training method?

Reward-Based Positive Reinforcement Training is the best way to train a dog. When they associate their good behaviour with praise and a reward they are more likely to keep doing it. The reward must occur immediately after the event (within a few seconds), as they only associate the behaviour and the reward if it is immediate. The reward can be praise, such as saying ‘Good Dog’, offering a food treat or their favourite toy. Positive training is more fun for both of you and strengthens your bond. Therefore you must ignore any unwanted behaviour, such as jumping up or barking excessively. Your dog learns that unwanted behaviour does not give them any attention.

How long will the training take?

For dogs of all ages, each training session should be no longer than 10–15 minutes per day. Always start off in a quiet area with no distractions. Once your dog is performing the task reliably, you try it in a ‘real’ situation. Dogs can be trained to perform almost any task if you use clear commands and a suitable reward. Training should be continued throughout their life so it is reinforced. To modify existing problem behaviour, you should first rule out a medical problem with your vet.

Should I be the only trainer in my household?

It is vital to the success of your dog’s training, that everyone in the household is involved. If everyone is consistent with training your dog will learn much more quickly. Consistency is the key to your success. You also need to have realistic expectations of your dog. Training takes time and it must be reinforced constantly. Especially if you are removing “normal” dog behaviour such as barking, digging and jumping that your dog has practised for a long time. It is never too late to change their behaviour but the longer it has been there the longer it will take to remove.

Written by David Loneragan

David grew up and still lives locally and has worked at Gordon Vet since 1985. His love of animals and interest in all things veterinary started when he was a young boy spending time with his own pets and working on a country farm. David’s post-graduate studies have been in the fields of medical problems of dogs and cats and diagnostic ultrasound and radiology. In addition, he is interested in dermatology, cardiology and ophthalmology.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Online presence by Pet Pack | Web Design by Online Marketing for Doctors | Sitemap
Book Online
Lihong Xing
Lihong Xing
05:00 05 Nov 18
Highly recommend Dr David, Scott, Helen, and Catherine, I've taken my cat to see all the doctors here.
Vishal Kapoor
Vishal Kapoor
01:52 04 Sep 18
Really amazing staff members. Their systems and processes are also very
Arezu A
Arezu A
03:20 15 Feb 18
Absolutely love the service here. I switched from other Vets to this Vet as the staff here are quite attentive and really care about your furry baby! I have basically seen most of the Dr's here and all of them so far have been fantastic, friendly and fun to speak with! Easy to locate and enough parking available! 5 Stars indeed!
Gerry Stevens
Gerry Stevens
11:01 14 Jul 18
Good competant vet. Did what I needed. Staff friendly. Cat's well.
Jeremy Tarbox
Jeremy Tarbox
22:55 10 Sep 18
We found a stray, agitated dog in front of our house last night. We phoned but got no help from the Council ranger who gave two options: tie him up in front yard overnight or "let him loose, he'll find his own way home" :( So we phoned Gordon Vet: they stayed open a few minutes so we could run him up and he could have a bed and dinner. Thank you Gordon Vet Hospital, hope he gets home soon!!! :)
See All Reviews