For Dog Training, Consistency is More Important than Amount of Training Time

Do you have an extra 30 minutes every day to work on dog training? Yeah, me neither.

Luckily for us, building a habit of consistent behavior (both yours and your dogs!) is much simpler and more effective than occasional blocks of "training sessions."


Is there one behavior your dog does that really bothers you? Maybe it's leash-pullng, or jumping up, or interrupting your Zoom calls. You can tackle the most painful thing first and let the other things go for now.

How Much Does Your Dog Need to Know?

The only things your dog really needs to know are the skills that keep them safe, and that lets you live harmoniously together. For my dog, those skills are Coming When Called, Leave It, and Polite Leash Walking. You may have a shorter or longer list but always start with the essentials.

Build Small Habits

As I've found in my own life, it's easier to start with small changes and build from there. New Year's Resolutions have given way to working on one small habit at a time.

Have a Plan! Then Measure and Iterate

Tracking progress and making small changes to your plan will help you make quicker progress overall. Let's say your dog is working on waiting patiently while you open the door before a walk. Can your dog wait for 1 second? For 5 seconds? Until you say it's ok to go? Work where your dog is successful, and gradually increase the difficulty.

Try This Easy Habit!

Start carrying yummy treats on dog walks. Every time your dog looks at you, say "Yes!" and give them a treat. Notice how often they check in, and how distracting the environment is. Can they check in only when it's boring? Do they check in when something fun is close? Far away?

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