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Guide to dog training for older dogs

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Mika, Staff Writer

Thursday, 17 June 2021

The golden rule of dog training is that the younger the age, the quicker they’ll learn. Ideally, dogs should be trained when they are between 12 and 16 weeks of age as puppies. But we know all too well that life can get in the way, meaning that you might not be able to train your dog until they have matured in age. 

If this sounds like you, the good thing is that it is possible to teach an old dog new tricks - you just need to understand how. Here’s everything you need to know about training your older dog. 

Your dog may need to be socialised

The goal of training is to teach your dog obedience. However, it’s also a golden opportunity for your dogs to meet other dogs, and learn specific ‘dog code’ practices. For example, how to play gently and how to communicate with each other. All of which has been missing due to lockdown, which is why it’s important that when it’s safe to do so, you slowly reintroduce this. If your dog isn’t socialised, it will make training them a lot more difficult. 

You may require a Dog Behaviourist

Understandably, your dog may have missed the window in which training would have been most effective. For more stubborn issues, you may require the services of a dog behaviourist. Such problems can include separation anxiety, aggression on the lead or excessive barking among many others. Don’t delay in seeking advice for your dog as the earlier you nip any problems in the bud, the sooner order will be restored. Your dog will likely be a lot happier for it too! 

You'll still need to keep up the training at home

Dog training is a lifelong process and doesn’t just end when the training classes are over with. Your dog is going to look to you for clues on how to behave throughout its life. So it’s ideal to keep up with the skills you learn during dog training classes so that their behaviour doesn’t slip. Be sure to involve the whole household with the job so that the responsibility doesn’t fall on one person. 

To sum up

Dog training classes are usually part and parcel of dog ownership. However, with life getting in the way, your dog may not have developed all of the skills it should have at the older age they are at now.

Now is the time to get your dog enrolled in dog training classes so that it can get back up to speed. 

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