Proper training can lead to a more socialized, better-behaved, safer, and happier dog. You can achieve these same goals through exercise too. Lack of daily aerobic exercise could even be to blame for some of the problems you hope to prevent with training, suggests Colleen Paige, author of The Good Behavior Book for Dogs: The Most Annoying Dog Behaviors … Solved! Digging, barking, and displaying aggressive and destructive behavior can all be energy outlets for antsy dogs.
Therefore, you should exercise with your dog before training to help work off some of that extra energy. Your dog shouldn’t be too tired, but it should release a bit of excess energy so that your dog can pay you more attention. As Paige shares, the most important aspect of obedience training is to get your dog to take notice of you. The second most important part is to have your dog maintain the focus on you. Exercising with your dog, such as going on a walk or enjoying a backyard Frisbee throw, will help establish that positive connection between you and your pet.
While training is serious work, consider thinking of it as a game, or at least to encourage your dog to do so. Let’s face it. No one, including your dog, wants to engage in tedious drudgery. If you remain attentive and reward good behavior with treats, toys, or praise, your dog will do better during the training session and look forward to the next one.