After careful consideration and many days dreaming about finding your new furry best friend, you finally decide that it’s the right time to get a dog. But what kind of pooch would be the perfect fit for a first-time owner? While all dogs have their own unique qualities, it’s important for a non-experienced dog owner to choose dogs that are easy to train so that they can more easily avoid all sorts of unwanted behaviours.
When welcoming a puppy to your life, it’s also essential that you know how to properly train them so that you have a great relationship together. Here are a few things you should know about training your new pet and choosing the right breed for you.
Why is dog training important?
Every dog owner benefits from training their new puppy as this not only ensures that you can cohabit happily together, but also it adds to the quality of your relationship. As pets can’t communicate through words, they need to be given the tools that can help both of you to understand each other.
Depending on your needs and lifestyle, you can choose to either provide your pet with basic training, obedience training, or — if you envision a life of stardom for your puppy in the dog show world — advanced training.
How can I train my dog?
The goal should be to teach your dog the basics of training that would make it easier for the two of you to communicate. It’s a good idea to start socialising them with other dogs at an early age and exposing them to new surroundings to see how they react around other pets and people.
When starting the training, be prepared to invest some time and effort in it and avoid expecting results too fast. All dogs are different when it comes to learning and so kindness and patience goes a long way. Treats won’t hurt either. You can either do the training by yourself or hire a professional instructor to help you.
Top easiest dogs to train
Bringing a new pet into your home and life is a major decision, so to make sure you’re picking the right one. Let’s take a look at some of the easiest dogs to train:
1. Border Collie
One of the most beloved pets, the Border Collie is agile and intelligent, which are both traits that are sure to be helpful when trying to train them. As with any dog, they do require a bit of time and attention to get them to learn new tricks, but they are no doubt still very quick to follow commands. Tricks like ‘sit’ or ‘roll over’ will be a piece of cake for them to learn, especially if treats are involved.
Poodles are as energetic and eager to please as they come. They also adore being among people, so they’ll do anything to try to impress their owners, tricks included. Keep in mind though that they need an active owner that can provide them with intellectual and physical stimulation to burn off all that energy.
Among the easiest dogs to train, Papillon dogs love a good challenge, as well as attention — loads of attention! When around people, they will try to be on their best behaviour and as masters of obedience, they will pretty much do any tricks to get into your good graces.
4. Bernese Mountain Dog
The Bernese Mountain dog is what can be called a gentle giant. They are loving and obedient but due to their large size, it’s best to start training when they’re pups. With some praise and encouragement, they will be very receptive to training, albeit a bit slow in the beginning. It’s important to keep your sessions short and to have lots of patience. Never raise your voice or show aggressiveness towards them because they are a sensitive breed that responds best to kindness.
5. German Shepherd
Training comes naturally to the exceptionally loyal German Shepherd breed. They are fast to pick up new habits and tricks and are instinctively protective so it’s best to start training them from a young age to avoid them getting overly defensive of those around them. However, they are one of the most obedient and disciplined dog breeds – no wonder they are used for police or military work.
6. Golden Retriever
A fast runner, and even faster learner, the Golden Retriever is definitely one of the easiest dogs to train. They love to learn and be around humans, so they’ll have no problem picking up tricks and commands as it’s in their nature to obey. In fact, they are often ranked as among the top 5 easiest dogs to train.
7. Border Terrier
In the hands of a competent trainer, the Border Terrier will thrive at learning commands and new tricks. The key is to have patience and use lots of praise and encouragement. That way, you’ll be successful in no time!
Which traits make it easy to train dogs?
- Age. Younger dogs will always be more receptive to training and will learn faster and retain information better, which is why it’s always recommended that you train your pup as early on as possible.
- Distractibility. Depending on the environment and the dog’s personality, distractibility ranges from dog to dog. A higher level of focus will ensure the best results as this will make it easier to train dogs. To avoid distracting your dog too much, first start training in a quiet place where there’s no interruptions.
- Physical and mental health. Before starting training, it’s best to check with your vet if your dog is in good mental and physical shape so that training will not negatively affect their health.
- Energy levels. For basic training, dogs needn’t have high energy because they’ll only be learning a few simple commands. However, if you’re planning on advanced training, the dog should have enough energy to be able to keep up with the programme. Always pay attention to how your dog responds to training and keep your sessions short. If they seem tired, make sure to stop the session and continue some other time.
Getting a new pet is an exciting time in your life so, before you embark on this adventure, be sure to do your research and pick the right dog for you. But above all, remember to enjoy the process and have fun!
For more advice, read this article about puppy training next.