Friday, January 1, 2010

National Train Your Dog Month

The Association of Pet Dog Trainers has declared January to be NATIONAL TRAIN YOUR DOG MONTH!!!

This is a great opportunity for you and your people to learn new skills and brush up on old ones. I know that many of my dog blogging friends are already doing lots of training. The Happy Heelers herd, Ludo does tricks, Honey does freestyle, Big Pupi is a therapy dog and Mango's momma is always training him to stand in a cardboard box.

The better behaved you are the more places that you get to go with your person. Because I am well behaved I get to go to outdoor cafes. Barbara wouldn't take me if I went all cracker dog in public.

It doesn't have to be hard. You can incorporate training into all your daily activities. When you are on walks, practice your sit stays at every traffic light and stop sign. Even Ambrose has learned how to do that. Practice tricks while your people are watching TV. Every time a commercial comes on they can do a trick with you!

Learn a new dog sport with your person. As you know I like to do tracking.

I also practice my rally exercises.

Here is a video of me last year while we were learning our freestyle routine. Barbara rewards me as we practice. Sure, we made some mistakes but that just meant that we had to practice some more.

I love training. It is always fun, full of rewards and I have Barbara's undivided attention when we practice together. The funny thing is that the more that we practice, the more that I want to train. The training time with Barbara becomes its own reward (although I do love all the treats, praise and petting that I get).

Don't know how to get started? Get your people to sign you up for a training class or get help from a local trainer. APDT has a trainer search where you can find a trainer in your area to help you. Or get a group of your dog pals together and go for training walks around town. People will be impressed with how well behaved you are. Learn some new tricks. There are lots of training books and videos available.

Keep it positive in 2010. Training should be fun, fast and effective. No rough stuff. Reward based training is the best!

So get training and take some photos. Check back here because we will be announcing a training contest that will be an officially sanctioned Mango Minster event.

Happy New Year!!


Tom, Tama-Chan, Sei-Chan, Yuu-Chan said...

Hi Niamh! I wish I could enjoy some good training but things in France are not quite as advanced as in some other countries... I am terrible when I walk on the lead, although my breeder says the problem is endemic with springers. But I do always come when #1 calls me and never wander off. I am also very good about the "leave it" command. And she knows she can take me anywhere (including restaurants) and I will behave like a perfect gentleman.


Lorenza said...

Happy New Year Niamh, Ambrose and Barbara!
And Happy National Train Your Dog Month too!
Kisses and hugs

Anonymous said...


Clive said...

Happy New Year to all!

We think National Train Your Dog Month sounds fantastic! Wish they had it here in Ireland. We know lots of dogs who could benefit!

Clive and gang

Mango said...

I kind of like the whole training thing myself provided that Momma doesn't do anything too hard because it does take me a while to figure things out.


Agatha and Archie said...

Welllll you know we LOVE LOVE LVOE anything that involves lots of food......Happy New Year to you all!! Love A+A Archie is hagning out in the bathroom today( uhmm we are getting a large snow storm) He says it is really cozy and that plow can't fit in there.....

Scout 'n Freyja said...

Holy cow - now momma is gonna want us to crack the books and start to study! Just when we thought that we'd get to slide this year...

Hero said...

What a great way to bring awareness of how important it is for hoomans to train their dogs. Mom says I was easy to train since I'm so motivated for my ball. Mom and I are still working on my recall, but we've gotten to the point where she trusted me enough to let me run around on the beaches while dragging my leash. Once we settle in Maryland mom wants to enroll me in formal obedience classes to make sure that I have a solid recall under distractions. Tagpi needs to go through his basic obedience. Since coming into my home he's learned to walk politely on a leash, but there are still many other behaviors that my hoomans are having problems correcting/redirecting. You'd think after living with me he'd quickly learn that it pays to behave.

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