It is fair to say that not all dog owners are interested in training their dogs or in some cases they perhaps are interested but simply struggle to find the time. However you might be surprised to learn that teaching your dog a simple task, for a short period each day, can be hugely rewarding for both you and your dog. The task need not be complex it is the fact that you engage and interact with your dog that is the important factor. Taking time to train your dog has numerous benefits that can be incredibly stimulating and enjoyable for all involved.
What is the purpose of training a dog?
There are many purposes of course; however The Way of the Dog Ltd considers that the primary purpose is to maintain the health and safety of the dog whilst protecting the health and safety of others. This is something that all dog owners should carefully consider given the recent amendments to the Dangerous Dogs Act here in the UK. Training your dog is the responsible thing to do and can lead to the development of secure and confident foundations in your dog.
When it comes to choosing what to train your dog there is no definitive list, it really comes down to imagination, interest, personal choice, and access. There are so many interesting activities and events that you can involve your dog in these days that dog training has become accessible to all.
Training a dog even the simplest of tasks can have a variety of benefits, these include;
- Improving psychological and physiological wellbeing, contributing towards a healthy mind and body (both dog and owner).
- Optimising brain function.
- Increasing the strength of the bond and understanding between dog and owner.
- Establishing clear and positive communication.
- Raising self-esteem and confidence in the dog.
- Reducing stress and anxiety.
- Relieving boredom.
- Teaching new skills and improving the proficiency of existing skills.
- Giving a dog a role to perform providing an outlet for stored energy.
Your dog does not have to perform to any specific stereotype or even to a particular standard, all that matters is that the dog has the physical ability to perform the task and is willing to try. There is no sense in trying to teach a Chihuahua to scale a 6ft fence any more than attempting to run a marathon with a Dogue De Bordeaux. If you have any doubts, consult your vet. Always consider the functionality of your dog ensuring that it is physically capable of achieving the objective or task without coming to harm. History demonstrates that dogs were selectively bred to perform certain functions and that body conformation was modified accordingly.
Owning an untrained and disobedient dog can be a very challenging ordeal and may lead to exclusion from every day activities often taken for granted such as walking a dog in a country park or having guests visit the family home. Owning a trained dog can be a thoroughly rewarding relationship and enriching experience that forges strong human dog bonds allowing dog owners to successfully engage in a range of activities. If you are interested in training your dog and would like to discuss options please contact The Way of the Dog Ltd.