Obedience training is one of the most important aspects of raising a dog.
Training opens a line of communication between you and your dog.
In fact, a well-trained dog is by far a happier dog!
Why is training your dog so important? Why spend money, time and energy training your dog?
A trained dog requires fewer restrictions. The more reliable the dog, the more freedom he is given.
For example, many stores and businesses that normally won’t allow dogs on their premises will make an exception for a puppy or a dog that will heel nicely by his owner’s side, or will do a sit-stay or down-stay without hesitation.
And when company arrives in your home, there’s no need to banish a well-behaved dog to another room for fear that he will be a nuisance. Moreover, because a well-mannered, obedience-trained dog is both appreciated and welcome, he receives more attention and interaction from family members, visitors, and passers-by, than does the ill-mannered dog. A well-behaved, obedience-trained dog is a pleasure to own because he can go virtually anywhere without being a risk or nuisance to others. And don’t we all want a dog who exhibits appropriate behavior in a crowd, good manners when we have guests in our home, is reliable around children, and who doesn’t threaten other dogs or passers-by?
Obedience exercises not only teach good manners, but also increase relaxation in uncomfortable situations.
Dogs are social animals. Without proper training, they will behave like animals: soil your house, destroy your belongings, bark excessively, dig holes in your yard, fight other dogs…even bite you. Nearly all behavior problems are perfectly normal canine activities that occur at the wrong time or place or are directed at the wrong thing. For example, dogs will eliminate on the carpet instead of outside; dogs will bark all night long instead of just when a stranger is prowling around outside; or dogs will chew furniture instead of his own toys.
The key to preventing or treating behavior problems is to teach your dog
to redirect his natural behavior to outlets that are acceptable in your home.
Training is about relationship building.
Training strengthens the bond between dog and owner. It builds communication, understanding, mutual respect, and subtly but effectively demonstrates that you’re in charge. If your dog doesn’t respect you, you may both be in big trouble, particularly if he’s a bit rowdy or assertive by nature. All relationships require you to work at it–that includes the one you are creating with your dog. If you have a strong relationship, your dog is more likely to be responsive to you in a variety of situations–he will think you are the best thing since sliced bread!
When your dog obeys the simple request of “come” and “sit”, he is showing compliance to you. It is NOT necessary to establish yourself as top dog or leader of the pack by using extreme measures such as the so-called alpha rollover. You CAN teach your dog his subordinate role (to defer to you) by training obedience, manners, and/or tricks. Not to mention that this way is more fun for the human! Remember, having a dog in your life is about laughing and enjoying the moments.
Socialization is a part of dog training.
Socialization is the process of getting your dog accustomed to various people, objects, animals and situations and provides the opportunity for your dog to familiarize himself with the world in a non-demanding situation. Many people make the mistake of trying to sooth their pet when it acts frightened. If your pet hides under a chair when the vacuum cleaner comes out and you verbally reassure him, he may interpret this as reward for his fearful behavior. On the other hand, if you laugh and giggle when he charges at it and attacks, you are also encouraging and rewarding aggressive behavior. Many pets become fearful or aggressive because their owners have unintentionally trained them to be that way.
Obedience training gives the dog owner the voice control necessary to prevent numerous potential tragedies. For instance, should your dog slip out of his collar in the middle of a congested traffic intersection, you can safely guide him across the street, followed by a sit command to put his collar back on. Or should someone accidentally leave the front door open, and you spot your dog leaving, he can be safely called back by using the recall command.
Obedience training will help your dog become more responsive. It also gives you more control over your dog’s behavior. In an emergency situation, obedience training may save your dog’s life. In fact, it can ultimately save the lives of many dogs, because far fewer dogs would end up in animal shelters if their owners would simply take the time to train them.
Statistics show that puppies who receive early socialization, obedience, and temperament testing are far less likely to end up being euthanized by the time they turn three years of age than those who do not receive this early training. And for those dogs that do need homes, a trained dog is far easier to adopt out to a new home than an untrained one.