why shelter dogs need training
Training shelter dogs is a very worthwhile activity. It increases their adopt-ability and boosts their chance of finding a forever home.
Training a shelter dog is a little bit different from training your own pet at home. You have to remember that shelter dog may have had experiences that make it more difficult for him to focus. The early emphasis should be on building trust.
Teach the shelter dog to love his home
For the time being, the dog’s kennel is his home. Some of your early focus should be on getting him to enjoy being in his kennel. Don’t encourage the idea that good things only happen outside the kennel. Avoid giving him the idea that you are in a hurry to leave. After every training or exercise session spend at least 10 minutes playing enrichment games or, if there is room, add a little bit more training.
When you depart, leave something behind that will get his attention. This could be an enrichment toy or a chewy treat. The dog should always have access to enrichment toys.
Give the dog plenty of bathroom breaks outside the kennel.
Teaching A Shelter Dog A Kennel Routine
Our focus at all times should be train the dog to behave in a way which will make him attractive to potential new owners. The first impression that these potential owners get of a dog will be when they approach the cage. The dog shouldn’t bark or jump up when the cage is approached. Neither should he be difficult to get through the gate.
Approach the gate only when the dog is standing on the ground. Turn your back If he starts to jump up or show other unacceptable behavior. Start moving towards the gate again when he resumes the standing position.
Go through the gate when the dog is in the standing position. If he jumps up or shows any of the behaviors described in the previous section do not enter. when he is standing correctly, and you do enter, block the entrance with your body to prevent the dog from darting out
Putting on the leash and leaving the kennel
The dog will be keen to get the leash on and get moving. Only attach the lead when he is standing still. He will slowly learn that the best way to get anywhere is by acting calmly.
Leaving the kennel
The dog should wait patiently when you open the door to exit. Preferable, he should stand near the open door waiting for a command to exit. This may take a little time to teach. Proceed slowly. Every day move a little closer to the training goal.
As time goes by, you will find that each step in training shelter dogs becomes easier. Your goal is to make the dog more attractive to potential owners. Don’t let some frustrations along the way make you lose sight of this worthwhile outcome.