Training your dog is essential to provide them with a happy, healthy life. But when should you start? You’ve probably heard the phrase, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” But is that actually true? Can you not train a dog who is later along in life? The fact is that training can be complicated. Timing, as well as some other factors, can certainly impact how successful you’ll be. But don’t fret! We’ll be diving into the most important considerations in this blog to set you up for success when training your pup.
The Best Age to Start Training Your Dog
The best time to start training your dog is when they’re young. Dogs are like sponges when they’re puppies and they learn quickly. Not only that but training a dog at a young age can help establish good habits that will last throughout their life. Some dog breeds may be ready for training at 8 weeks old, while others may not be ready until they are 6 or 12 months old. Make sure to do a little research on your dog’s breed to know when the best time to start training is! The sooner you can get them into training, the better.
However, if you adopt an older dog, don’t despair! You can still train them, it’ll just take more time and patience
Can I Teach an Old Dog New Tricks?
Most dog trainers will tell you that it’s much harder to teach an old dog new tricks because they have already built-up habits and learned behaviors. It’s tough enough to break them of bad habits, so trying to get them to learn something new can be downright impossible!
If your dog is older than 6 years old, the best thing you can do is use rewards-based training. That way, if the dog has trouble learning a new skill or breaking an old habit, he gets rewarded for doing what you want him to do instead of punished for not doing it right away. If you’re looking for a treat that will get your dog tail-wagging-excited about training, check out Plato Pet Treats Small Bites – they’re bite-sized, honestly healthy treats that your dog will go crazy for (and make training them that much easier)
Training an Adopted Dog
What if you don’t know exactly how old your dog is because they were adopted? Can you still start training them? Of course! But there are some considerations here to take into account outside of age. Dogs that have been abused or neglected in the past can be especially difficult to train, as they may be anxious or mistrusting of humans.
It’s important that you take your time when training an adopted dog and pay close attention to their body language and what might trigger bad behavior. If something happens during a training session that makes your dog scared or defensive, stop and try again later. There’s no rush to get them trained overnight- be patient and you’ll see progress in time.
Training Your Dog = A Stronger Relationship with Your Pet
Remember, dog training is a process that takes time and patience! But with the right determination, you can successfully train your pup no matter what their age may be. If you’re interested in the benefits of training for your pet, check out our blog on Why Training Your Pet Can Be Life-Changing.