Making a training schedule for your dog involves carefully understanding its needs, your availability, and making the most of everyday routines.
Be patient, reward with treats, and don’t push your dog too hard. Eventually, your dog will learn to look forward to training time with you.
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Set a Definite Goal
> Basic Commands To Teach
> Entertaining Tricks You Can Teach
> Training Styles
> Equipment and Props Needed
Incorporate Training Into Daily Routines
> Feeding Time
> Potty Time and Daily Walks
Determining Frequency and Duration of a Training Activity
> How Long Should a Routine Last?
> How Often Should You Train?
Incorporating Playtime and Rest
> Should I Worry if My Dog Doesn’t Obey Commands During Training?
> I’m Busy. How to Schedule Time to Train My Puppy?
There’s no simple answer to how to make a training schedule for your dog.
Every dog is different and so is every dog owner. However, there are general guidelines for creating a training schedule that can work for all owners and dogs everywhere.
By the end of this article, you’ll know how to create an effective training schedule that works for both of you. You’ll also learn some basic commands, training styles, and tricks to make training easier and more effective.
Dogs aren’t born trained. It’s the responsibility of their owners to make sure they’re housebroken.
This brings us to our first task — setting a definite goal for the training.
But what exactly does a dog’s training schedule include?
Well, it includes things that you want or need to teach your dog. This can include basic commands, entertaining tricks, daily activities, or life-saving behaviors.
Fun Fact: Your dog can hear sounds between 47,000 to 65,000 Hz. That means they can not only hear their owners very well but also earthquakes!
You will also need to teach your dog how and when to eat, relieve itself, and play with others.
(We’ll cover that in more detail later)
Did you know that you can develop your complete puppy training schedule by age? The American Kennel Club (AKC) has a great article on what you can teach your puppy based on how old it is.
Whichever training style you choose, use positive reinforcement to make training fun for your dog.
The easiest way to train your dog is by using positive reinforcement or rewarding it for good behavior.
Positive reinforcement is simple and does not involve any punishment. At its worst, dogs that behave badly get no rewards or have their toys taken away.
Why is positive reinforcement better?
An experiment from last year examined the difference between groups of dogs who were trained with positive and negative reinforcement. Unsurprisingly, dogs who received negative reinforcement showed higher stress levels by panting more and exhibiting higher cortisol levels.
Here’s a list of other training styles you might want to take a look at:
Before you go about training your dog and creating a training schedule, you’ll need some equipment and props. These can include retractable harnesses, dog treats, whistles, collars, and whatever you find useful.
It’s good to use props as a stimulus during training. However, ensure that your reliance on them is only temporary.
Also Read: Top Dog Training Tips
Time to tackle the most important question every dog owner has: How do I make my dog a training schedule?
Since your dog has yet to establish a routine, why not try to model your dog’s routine based on your schedule?
Try to think about your daily schedule. When do you wake up? What time do you eat your meals? When are you free? What time do you need to work?
Once you have a good idea of the routine you’d like to maintain, try to include your dog in everything you do. Wake up together, eat together, and walk together.
What Routine Activities Can I Turn Into Training Lessons? Here are some great suggestions:
A regular mealtime is the easiest to establish since your puppy will always be up for a snack. To train your dog to eat on time, give it meals when you’re eating. This turns it into a bonding activity.
Dogs are also more likely to mimic their owners so it’s a very natural way to get them used to a daily feeding time.
Potty time and daily walks are the next best activity that you should get your dog used to.
Once you have a feeding schedule, a potty and/or walk schedule is easier to follow.
To make it even easier, take your dog for a walk after every meal. The walk eventually becomes a cue for it to relieve itself. It’ll also make your life easier. After all, you don’t want to run after your dog and pick up its waste at random hours.
Other than a post-feeding walk, dogs are also likely to relieve themselves after a nap. Make sure to schedule a walk every morning or in the afternoon after their nap time.
Remember that puppies need lots of potty breaks since they have smaller bladders and still need to learn how to hold them in.
Wondering why you need to teach your dog to play?
To start with, teach your dog that there are certain times when playing is appropriate and times when it isn’t. Not every place is a playground.
You will also need to teach your dog how to play safely with little children and other pets. This is an important lesson especially if you have a large dog and a baby or smaller pets in the house.
If there’s something you can’t do together, train your dog to take a nap or keep busy during that time.
Now that you know which activities to train them for, you can move on to the next step.
Puppies are more playful and get distracted more easily than adult dogs so keep training time shorter for younger dogs.
Dogs get bored easily, puppies even more so. That means initially training them for more than 5 minutes is going to be tough. But don’t lose hope too fast.
Made in the USA using locally sourced ingredients, these chicken treats are excellent at capturing your pup’s attention. Containing just 2 ingredients and less than 1 kcal per treat, the Pupford Freeze Dried Chicken Treats come in a small size that make training easy. You get 475 treats in each bag and can store these treats anywhere. There is no need to refrigerate.
You can start with 5 minutes and keep adding 1 to 2 minutes of training every other session. Once your dog becomes more interested, it will want to train for longer.
Over time and as your dog becomes more used to training, you’ll want to increase the duration to 10 to 15 minutes. This is the ideal daily dog training schedule.
On some days, your dog may not want to pay attention or maybe feel playful. When that happens, don’t push it. As Martin Deeley puts it, “When it comes to training a dog, 5 minutes a day Monday through Friday is better than 30 minutes on Saturday.”
Don’t force your dog to work on command or trick if it doesn’t seem to want to. It can make your pet stressed, irritated, and it may end up dreading training with you. This makes them more likely to rebel against you and pick up destructive behaviors.
The sweet spot is 2 to 3 times a day. High-energy dogs require more training while smaller dogs may need less.
Schedule the sessions and be consistent but also learn to adjust as you go. You can also switch your dog training schedule week-by-week until you find the ideal time that works for both of you.
Even the most obedient and intelligent dogs need playtime. Make sure to give your pet ample opportunities to goof off and take a breather.
You know how to make a training schedule for your dog, but what about play and rest? For training to work, your dog needs to get proper rest and have some fun.
How can you improve the quality of rest/ sleep of your dog?
Get your dog a comfortable bed to sleep in and put it in a quiet part of the house. The dog will use the bed whenever it feels tired or needs some rest. This is a useful way to know when your four-legged companion is sick or when you’re pushing it too hard.
You can also introduce a crate during the first few weeks of your puppy’s arrival. Moving to a new space and getting adjusted to a new family is already a hard process for your new puppy. Make it easier with a crate or bed so it can have a safe space to retreat to.
The next task is to schedule some fun.
Schedule at least two sessions of play, bonding, or cuddling with your dog. This can be in the morning and evening if you have a flexible work schedule. You can also do it once in the evening if you have a hectic schedule.
One of the most recommended training tools, the Lure Stick is an excellent redirecting tool. Redirect your pet’s attention back to you every time they do something you don’t like. The retractable design, 29 inches extendable height and attached belt clip makes it extremely for you to train your dog with ease.
Not really. When your dog isn’t paying attention as it should, it’s a sign that you should take a break from training.
To help your dog look forward to it, reward it with treats, toys, and effusive praises whenever it does something right.
Too busy to take time out to train? Here are some tips so you can have a puppy schedule for working parents.
Training a dog takes lots of time and patience. You’ll struggle at first to find a schedule and training duration that works for you and your dog. Eventually, you’ll know for how long and how hard you can push before your dog starts becoming distracted.
As long as you don’t push too hard, respect your dog’s limits, and know how to use rewards, your dog will look forward to your training schedule.
And that’s how to make a training schedule for your dog.
A digital marketing expert by profession, Andrews is a gifted writer and animal lover at heart. A self-confessed "pawrent", Andrews is well-versed in all things dogs. He uses his years of experience of raising puppies into show-quality dogs to help guide first-time pet parents. He believes in spreading the joy that comes with being a dog dad and advocates more families to adopt pets.