It’s winter, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t train your dog. Grey, rainy days can be just as rewarding for your pooch as long walks in the park. You can start out with easy commands and then work up to the harder ones. Reward your pooch with nibbles or praise to reinforce the training. Training your dog is a great way to strengthen your relationship. There are even specialised products available that make it easier for you and your dog to train each other.
Dogs need exercise and mental stimulation when learning a new trick. The winter months are a perfect time for this. Even if you live in a southern state, you’ll probably be forced to stay indoors because of the cold. If you live in an area where there are many snowy days, you can take your dog out for a walk to burn off some extra energy. Visit www.segullah.org/daily-
A fun way to engage your dog during the winter is to set up a scavenger hunt. Hide a few toys or treats in different parts of the house. When your dog gets close, reward them. If they can’t find the food, give them a treat in a food-dispensing puzzle toy.
Besides keeping your dog indoors, you should adjust your feeding and walking schedules. You might need to time multiple trips during the day. You can also consider starting dinner earlier. Elimination timings will also need to be changed. In addition to these adjustments, you need to pay close attention to your pet’s cues. It’s better to teach your dog a signal than ignore it. If you want to train your dog for the winter, be prepared to put in some extra effort.
Hide-and-seek is a fun way to get your dog’s blood pumping. Play this game with a favorite toy or treat. The object is to find the treat and bring it back to you. The game will tire the dog while reinforcing the “come” command.
Targeting is also a great activity to do with your dog. Teach your dog to target a particular object, such as a hand, and he will focus his attention on the object instead of barking. If your dog learns this, he can use it in real life situations. When you touch his nose to your hand, he won’t bark and will redirect his attention to it.
You can also teach your retriever the Stand Alones drill, which has been popularized by Dennis Voigt. This exercise strengthens the connection between you and your dog by ensuring that your dog listens to your commands. It will also help him to learn to be steady and mark appropriately. This drill will help him improve his communication skills with you and your trainer.
The off-season is also a great time for field trials. Many field trial clubs offer training resources and socialization opportunities to dogs of all breeds. In addition to fostering a better relationship between you and your dog, participating in field trials is a great way to get some exercise and recognition.