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Dog Training Mistakes
May 1, 2023

Have you recently adopted a puppy, or perhaps taken in a pooch that could use a bit more petucation? If so, you have your work cut out for you. Summer is the perfect time for training, especially if you have an enclosed yard. Of course, you’ll need to be careful to take the right approach. A local Saginaw, MI vet lists a few common mistakes in this article. 

Poor Timing 

Training will go most smoothly when your furry friend is calm (but not tired), interested in food (but not stuffed or hungry), and not in urgent need of a walk. Schedule Fido’s classes accordingly!


If you buy training treats at a store, the first thing you’ll probably notice is that they are quite small. There’s a reason for that! We know, Fido would be delighted to get bites of yummy steak every time he sits on command … but he’ll also soon be too full to care about much beyond his next nap. Stick with small portions.


It’s easy to forget that our canine buddies don’t really process information the same way we do. For instance, Fido won’t understand that ‘Lay Down’ means exactly the same thing as ‘Fido, go lay down in your bed right now.’ Always use the same words and phrases. This applies to house rules, too! 

Negative Reinforcement 

This is a big one. You should never punish Fido for ignoring a command or not picking something up quickly enough. He may become wary of his training sessions, which will only make things harder on both of you. Even working with your canine companion when you’re in a bad mood can cause him to feel uneasy. Keep things ‘pawsitive’ at all times!

Abandoning It 

Make no mistakes: there are dogs out there who are aggressive to the point of being dangerous. In some cases, even professional training can only go so far. That said, there are also many pups that are misbehaving or won’t listen not because they are inherently bad, but because they are confused, scared, or just need more guidance. Don’t be afraid to get support. It can make a world of difference If you find yourself stuck and/or frustrated, reach out to your vet or a pet behavior specialist.

Do you have questions about your canine pal’s health or care? Contact us, your local Saginaw, MI animal clinic, today! 

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