September is Responsible Dog Ownership Month. One of your most important things duties as a good dog owner is making sure that your pup is properly trained. Teaching Fido to obey basic doggy commands is not only crucial for petiquette, but also for safety reasons. A Lewisville, TX vet offers a few tips on training your canine pal below. 

Make It Fun

Our canine companions are very intuitive, and they can easily pick up on our moods. Don’t work with your pet when you’re feeling sad or grumpy. Fido may sense that you’re in a bad mood, and may become wary about training. 

Class Schedule

Dogs can learn over 100 words. While you may not need to teach your pooch that many commands, he should know basics. The most important ones are Sit, Stay, Heel, Come, and Lay Down. Drop It and Leave It are also useful. Make sure your four-legged pupil knows these before moving on to advanced commands or cute tricks. 

Timing

Dogs really thrive on a set schedule. Try to work with your furry buddy at roughly the same time each day. Also, be careful not to bore Fido with long classes. 15 or 20 minutes at a time is plenty. 

Be Consistent

It’s easy to forget that dogs don’t understand many of the nuances of language that we take for granted. To Fido, ‘Sit’ and ‘Fido, sit down right now’ don’t necessarily mean the same thing. That’s why it’s important to always use the same words or phrases when teaching or giving commands. 

Rewards

You want your pooch to look forward to his lessons. What’s the best way to do that? Treats! Use small portions of yummy snacks to help Fido form a ‘pawsitive’ opinion about learning. This also helps him understand that being a ‘good boy’ is something to strive for. You can use bits of kibble, smaller dog treats, or cut-up pieces of bacon or hot dogs. Even once your furry friend has ‘graduated,’ it’s a good idea to give him treats for obeying, to help reinforce his knowledge. Just don’t go too crazy: if your adorable student gets too full, he may become more interested in napping than in continuing his petucation. 

Please reach out to us with any questions or concerns about your pet’s health or care. As your Lewisville, TX vet clinic, we’re here to help!