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Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Free Dog Training Tips for Beginners

By Anton Hout, author of The Guide to Aussie Training & Care

These free dog training tips focus on the most important aspects of any program. It all starts at home, right from the beginning.

Don't worry. If you failed to begin the program when you first brought your puppy home, it is possible to start fresh. Even some of the older shelter and rescue dogs can be trained. Many shelters do a preliminary evaluation before placing an older dog for adoption to ensure that they are trainable.

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Breed makes a difference. If you have yet to choose a breed, you might want to do a little research about which ones will be a good fit with your home and your personality. More info on choosing an Australian Shepherd here.

One of the best free dog training tips is to start early! For example training your puppy to accept and be comfortable with grooming will make both of your lives easier in the long run.

The amount of time that you have to spend on grooming makes a difference. As a general rule, long-haired dogs will take up more of your time. Unless you can brush your pet on a daily basis, you may find that your furnishings are quickly covered with hair.

Blue merle Australian Shepherd puppy sitting on grass.

Jody and Jean Lee

Australian Shepherds are always eager to learn. The free dog training tips on this page are just the beginning of what you can do with your Aussie!

Above: This is Tesla at 12 1/2 weeks taking a breif break during a game of fetch.

Some breeds, like Aussies, need more exercise than others. Some have a tendency to be easier to train than others. There are individual variants within any breed of course. There are no absolutes.

But you can find general advice concerning breed selection from many sources. Some organizations offer free dog training tips specific to the breed. Let's look at just one breed as an example of things to consider.

The typical Australian Shepherd or "Aussie" is intelligent, alert and devoted. His hair is moderate in length and coarseness. It may be straight or slightly wavy. Weekly brushing is usually sufficient to remove loose hair, mats, dirt and other material.

Aussies require regular physical activity, as they were bred to herd livestock. He will not be happy with a sedentary lifestyle. Daily walks and regular runs are a must. One of the first free dog training tips may be too obvious and is often overlooked...

Make sure your Aussie has enough exercise. If they have too much pent-up energy they will be misbehaving and unable to focus on any training you try.

As is the case with most herding and working breeds, Aussies are relatively easy to train. They usually learn new tasks quickly. Housebreaking is no harder than with any other breed.

Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Free Dog Training Tips For Young Puppies

Below are free dog training tips for young puppies:

  • Use his name often
  • Teach one behavior at a time
  • Reward good behavior
  • Discourage biting
  • Ignore unwanted behavior

Housetraining is the first area of concern for most new pet owners. You will find that keeping him in a small place is the easiest way to avoid multiple accidents.

Many owners choose to use crates for housetraining purposes. Because the space is small and confined, he is less likely to "go" in the crate. Many of the free dog training tips on the internet focus on the value of the crate.

If you decide to use a crate and you have a small puppy, talk to your vet about the maximum time to leave him in the crate without giving him the opportunity to go. They will try to hold it as long as they can, because they don't want to lie in the mess. But, forcing them to hold it for long periods of time can cause urinary and digestive problems.

One of the free dog training tips mentioned above was to discourage biting. This is a behavior that can lead to problems in the future. He should never be allowed to chew on your fingers, even when he is very young. One of the fastest ways to teach "no bite" is to overreact. You might say "OW!" loudly enough to startle him. That usually works.

Being consistent is very important. Everyone in the household should agree about what is and is not acceptable behavior.

If you live alone, try to expose your pet to other people by going for walks, visiting the groomer often and having well-dog check-ups. You don't want him to become too shy or aggressive. You might need someone else to take care of him in the future.

Your vet may have some other free dog training tips... It's always a good idea to talk with your vet before beginning a new program. Especially if it involves rigourous movements and jumping (agility training, frisbee, etc.). Caution must be used with puppies under 9 months to a year as thier bones are still developing and jarring impacts can cause injury and problems later in life.

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Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Have Dog Training Questions?

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