10 October 2023
Owning a dog is a privilege and often amazing experience. These animals are incredibly loyal and loving companions, but do require proper and considered training. Dogs need to be trained for a number of reasons, which this blog will offer a brief overview of.
Perhaps most importantly, training is the best vehicle for allowing dogs to assimilate to their owners’ lives and homes. While dogs did evolve to become easy to live with and alongside, they must still be taught certain behaviours, as well as what is not acceptable to do at certain times. It is relatively easy to train dogs to only go to the toilet outside, refrain from mouthing people out of excitement, as well as be accepting of strangers in the home. Failure to do so can result in dogs which are both hard and unpleasant to live with who do not understand boundaries, and have never been exposed to any. Although some owners may like the idea of allowing their dog to exist in its “natural state”, we would never recommend doing so. Untrained dogs are often anxious and unhappy dogs who lack structure or discipline, which is never desirable.
Training is also an excellent and underrated way to increase and upscale your dog’s quality of life. Given their intelligence, dogs require constant mental stimulation. This is particularly so with working breed and line dogs who thrive when given a job or role to fulfil. In our experience, intelligent dogs greatly enjoy and benefit from regular training dogs. This can be as small as multiple daily sessions lasting less than a minute, i.e. demanding it waits or sits before being given food or access to a favourite toy. Consistent mental stimulation is highly beneficial for dog welfare, and one of our priorities as working dog trainers.
We have also found that training strengthens owner-dog bonds. Mutual trust is built in training sessions where owner and dog learn that they can rely on each other, either to perform a desired behaviour or provide treats and other desirable incentives as rewards. Successful bonding will manifest as a more affectionate relationship, which is ultimately one of the very reasons dogs exist as they do.