Our lives are very busy and sometimes it seems like there is no time to train the family dog.  However, this does not need to be the case.  Studies have shown that dogs learn best with short (3-5 minute) training sessions.  With this in mind, there is no need to plan a 30 minute training session, instead just put training into your daily routine.

One easy step to take is to have your dog “sit” or “down” before you give him a treat or a pet.  You can also teach your dog to sit when he approaches you (this can also prevent or stop your dog if he has a jumping problem).  There are many popular training programs that encourage this practice, like “Learn to Earn”, “Nothing in Life is Free” or “Say Please”.  All of these programs turn everyday interaction with our dogs into opportunities to train.  When these desired behaviors are “rewarded” with positive things (that the dogs enjoys) the behaviors will be repeated.  In addition, the more consistent you are, the faster your dog will learn.

Next time you are going to feed your dog a meal or a treat or are about to give him a scratch behind his ears, have him sit or a do another desired behavior first and eventually he will do the behavior automatically.  Take the stress out of training and make it fun!