Once your dog has been through obedience training here at Dog Training Now, you know how wonderful it is to return home with a dog that listens and obeys commands. In order to prevent sliding back into bad habits, daily obedience practice is key to keeping boundaries clear for your dog. If you aren’t quite sure how to incorporate daily practice into your day, don’t let yourself get too overwhelmed with the idea. Instead, take a few of our tips on how to easily incorporate a bit of practice every day.
Place during meals
One of the easiest times to incorporate practice of the Place command is during mealtimes. Right before your family sits down to eat a meal, put your dog on Place. Many of our families have a Place designated near the dining room table so that they are able to correct the dog if she wanders off the “two paw” rule.
Not only is Place during meals a great practice for a longer timeframe, it also prevents any bad habits like begging. Try it out during one meal per day to begin with, building up to more meals as your dog becomes used to the longer times.
Sit during morning routine
Practicing the Sit command can be incorporated into your morning routine. If your dog tends to follow you (or another family member) around during the morning, try putting him in a Sit while you complete small tasks like put on your make up or brush your teeth. If you have kids, this is a great time to encourage them to practice Sit with your dog as well.
Down-Stay during evening busy times
Once everyone is home from work and school, the home activity (ahem – chaos) can pick up quite a bit. Your dog can actually benefit from practicing commands during this busy time, as they have a command to focus on among the distractions. Try incorporating a Down-Stay command during this evening transition time, perhaps while you are making dinner or when your kids are finishing up homework.
Leash manners during walks
We recommend walking with your dog daily, not only for the exercise but also for the command practice. You can practice your leash manners during your daily neighborhood stroll, alternating between Let’s Go and Heel commands to keep your dog engaged. At stop signs, practice Sit or Down before continuing on your walk.
All commands during playtime
Every dog loves a good play session with the family, and this eagerness can translate well for some extra practice. Try practicing the hand commands for Sit or Down intermittently throughout your game of Fetch – it’s a fun way to brush up on commands in a playful way.
If you are needing some additional support for your dog, we are always here to help our Alumni clients! Give us a call to talk about your situation and schedule a brush up session with our Trainers.