Did you know that most common dog training issues can be resolved with positive reinforcement and management? That means that, with the proper time and attention, even your older dog can become a well-behaved animal.
How can you get started, though? How much time does it take to train an older dog, and what can you expect? Luckily, we’re here to help you through it all.
Read on for a brief but complete dog training guide.
Benefits of Training Your Dog
No matter your dog’s age, there are benefits to training them:
- Strengthen your bond
- Establish trust and respect
- They become more enjoyable to live with
- More freedom for them
- Happier and healthier overall
When your dog has boundaries, they understand what to expect from you. There’s a clear sense of what can and cannot be done, so they have more freedom to interact with you within the guidelines you’ve set. There’s no confusion for them inside their home, so they feel safer.
What should you focus on, though?
Socialization is easiest done when dogs are done, but it’s not impossible when your dog is older. It’s just important to realize they might have more trouble with the process, and they may not ever be able to adapt to some scenarios.
Even if they can’t adapt to some social scenarios, that doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with them. In fact, it’s just something that comes with adopting an older dog. Socializing is a bit more complicated for dogs that have already existed in certain ways and learned certain behaviors, but that doesn’t mean you should give up on them.
Out of everything you can teach your dog, obedience is the easiest thing. This includes everything from setting basic boundaries in the house to tricks and even special tasks. The only that might get in the way of certain things is your dog’s health, so it’s best to take things slowly at first and ease into new tasks.
It’s easy enough to make sense of any physical limitations they have, and then you can work to find new ways around them. It’s best to adjust your training to help them succeed and to recognize their efforts to learn everything you’re teaching them.
This is where things can get hard, but not impossible. It’s just important to remember that behavior modification is going to look different between older dogs and puppies.
Taking the same basic approach is effective, though. That means interrupting unwanted behaviors by immediately showing them the wanted behavior. So, if they’re chewing on your chair leg and you’d like them to stop, then show them a toy instead.
Simply telling your dog “no” isn’t going to help them learn. When they can associate the reward of playtime with their toys instead of your furniture, then they’re going to reach for the toys.
Remember This Dog Training Guide
When it comes to training your older dog, it might require a bit of time and patience, but it’s definitely not impossible. With this dog training guide, you’ll be on your way in no time. Remember, the more you invest in your dog’s training, the more they’re going to give you in return.
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