A well-behaved dog is a wonderful addition to any home. Spending just a few minutes a day helps build a bond between you and is great fun! If you have a family, learning to train a dog is wonderful for the kids, too. And once you start, it gets addicting! Both you and your dog wind up looking forward to those regular sesions.
I adopted my first dog 7 years ago and discovered that, after taking her through lots of obedience classes, we both wanted more because we had such fun. That led me into all sorts of fun activities - running agility courses and dock diving, among others. It's great exercise for us both, is tons of fun, and just a wonderful way to spend quality time.
It says a lot about the intelligence of dogs (assuming their humans are patient and consistent) that they can so quickly learn so many different kinds of things. And spending the time to train your dog does wonders for developing a bond that is special like nothing else.
What's interesting is how many different types of training systems are available these days, each with its own unique focus and approach. Most people have heard of Victoria Stillwell and Cesar Milan, but there are many qualified trainers that have their own approaches.
This article will list some of the resources available - some are free online, some are systems you can sign up to learn about, and there are a ton of books. You'll definitely be able to find something in here that will work for you, your pup, and your personal style. And, of course, Amazon is a great resource for finding many different books with different training methods.
Here are a just a couple of the websites focused on training:
Secrets to Dog Training - formerly known as "SitStayFetch" This a free 6-day course delivered directly to your inbox.
Dove Cressewell's Training On Line - An online training series that is professional and very well done.
Clicker Training - Developed by two top Norwegian trainers, this book teaches you how to use a clicker to quickly train your dog.
Do It Yourself Dog Training - These folks offer training systems via ebook and/or audio for everything from potty training to barking.
Dog Training Home Study Course - This is a 5 disc set and 4 books for the at-home do-it-yourself dog trainer.
Dog Training Zone - You can sign up for a free 7-part mini course and, if you like what you see, you can order a downloadable course.
Truly, dog training is far more fun than I had ever imagined. If you've never made an active training commitment, I'd really encourage you to. There's just nothing like it once you get used to the discipline of it. And it's been really good for me, too!
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