Most dogs thrive on having a routine. They like knowing when to expect
activities such as mealtimes, walks, playtime, and more. It can also be a great
help to establish a routine when trying to train a dog. Most dogs feel more
secure when they can predict what is going to happen each day. The following
ideas will show you how establishing a routine can benefit your dog
It's a good idea to give your dog or puppy its meals at the same time every
day. Puppies usually eat several small meals over the course of the day, while
adult dogs get one or two larger meals. Talk to your veterinarian to figure out
the best type and portion of food for your dog.
The benefit of feeding a dog at the same time every day is that it makes it
easier to predict when it'll need to relieve himself. This makes a big difference
when you're trying to housebreak a dog.
Dogs should get outside to go relieve themselves at about the same time
each day. Puppies need frequent potty breaks, while older dogs can hold it for
longer periods. Keep this in mind when creating a schedule for your dog.
Putting this on a schedule will greatly enhance your housebreaking efforts.
Dogs will be more likely to hold it if they can reliably predict when they'll get a
chance to go outside and relieve themselves.
Walks and Playtime
Plan on spending about an hour or more each day walking and playing with
your dog. All dogs will benefit from this type of exercise and mental
stimulation. Getting this activity every day can help curb destructive behavior.
It's a good idea to add training time to your dog's schedule every day. It helps
improve its behavior, and it provides it with some mental stimulation. There
are a few ways to add training to your schedule each day:
Training sessions: Training sessions are short (about 10 minutes)
periods you set aside a few times each day to work on a particular skill,
such as basic commands. This is a great way to train a dog to do new
behaviors and to reinforce them. Clicker training is one method that
works well with a session approach.
Opportunity training: This involves using different opportunities that
arise throughout the day to reinforce your dog's training. For instance,
while your family is sitting down to a meal is a great time to work on a
"go to place” command. While you're watching television in the evening
is a good time to work on capturing behaviors with a clicker.
Adding both of these methods to your schedule is sure to create a better-
behaved dog and a happier family.