When a puppy is the size of a teacup with a cute little bark, it may not seem like a big deal to allow the puppy to run around while you chase him. But as the puppy grows and becomes harder to control, it becomes clear: your dog needs obedience training.
A well-trained dog is a happy dog. She respects her owner as the leader and she knows the parameters for behavior, making it easier to understand the world.
Dog training provides many benefits for both your pet and you.
Builds the relationship: Obedience training provides time for you and your pet to learn together. Through positive reinforcement, you teach and reward your dog for acceptable behaviors. Your dog learns to trust you and knows you are in charge.
Increases safety: A dog who is trained to heel or sit is much less likely to fight the leash while on a walk, run into traffic, or get into a fight with another dog. With so many dogs that are family pets, it is important that your dog understands the rules of behavior, especially if children will be around.
Provides freedom: You might think that training limits a dog’s freedom. In contrast, it can increase it. A dog that is well trained is often given more opportunities than one that misbehaves. Well-behaved dogs are often welcome on airplanes, hotels, shopping malls and even restaurants. Snappy, growling and yappy dogs are not afforded the same luxury.
Adds convenience: Any pet owner whose dog has had an accident in the house appreciates a house-trained dog. Although your pet can still have the rare accident, when your dog is trained to eliminate in a certain area or a certain time, it makes life much easier for you.
Makes it easier to maintain your dog’s health: Dogs don’t usually like to get their teeth brushed, ears cleaned or even burrs removed from their coats. But these necessary grooming acts help keep your dog healthy. It’s much too easy to avoid brushing your dog’s teeth if he growls or protests when you try. But lack of grooming can eventually lead to gum disease and subsequent health problems.
With all of the reasons to train your dog, why is it some people still choose not to? Some owners may feel sorry for the dog, thinking the rules are restrictive, instead of reassuring. Family members may disagree on training methods, or are not committed to training the dog consistently.
The result is often a dog that is out of control, unsure of the rules and when he breaks them, is not sure why he is in trouble.
It’s never too late to start training your dog—despite the familiar adage. If you have questions about dog training, talk with your veterinarian, or contact us at our Chapel Hill, NC office at 919.942.6330 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.