SEATTLE — Farrah Branson of West Seattle Wonder Dogs has trained almost every type of dog under the sun- so she knows her stuff. Here are Farrah's three tips for getting your dog into tip-top training shape.
TIP #1: Break up training time
Farrah recommends breaking up training time in order to keep your dog interested,
"Train your dog small bits every day," Farrah says. "It doesn't need to be a long commitment. Just being consistent- and doing that few minutes of training every single day with your dog is really going to help them a lot. And it will keep them from getting frustrated and bored."
And if they are getting frustrated, it's okay to take a break.
"If your dog is looking frustrated, or if you are getting frustrated off...just stop," Farrah says. "If it's not a good time to train, you can always come back and do it another day. But you really want to have it positive. You want to keep your dog winning, always set them up for success."
TIP #2: Use quality treats
The type of treats you use to reward your dog during training matters.
"Use really high-value treats," Farrah says. "Sometimes I say don't even use treats at all, find what's in your fridge. Is there some really good cheese? Cut it up really small. Dogs don't quantify the size of the treat. They just quantify how fast they get it."
Nulo even makes special training treats just for this purpose. The treats have no artificial preservatives, smoke flavors or artificial colors. Their Salon Trainers give dogs nutrition while also providing a high-value reward.
TIP #3: Have fun!
It's a classic tip that makes any tough activity better - making sure you and your dog have fun during the training.
"If you can end your training sessions with a game of play, or even introduce play into training," says Farrah. "If you can teach them through play, you're gonna be a lot more successful and your dog's going to want to train with you."
Food, fun and some time to take a breath- sounds like a recipe for success.