Skip to Main Content

Dr. Hemstreet is retiring on May 25. We'd like to congratulate him and wish him all the best!

Dog Training Tips

You’ve just welcomed a new puppy or rescue pooch into your home. The next thing on your to-do list is to train him. Our Huntersville vets share dog training advice new owners should keep in mind.


Our Best Dog Training Advice

You’ve just brought home a new puppy or rescue dog. Now to train him! Our Charlotte veterinarians share the dog training advice for new owners.

Whether you choose to train your new puppy or rescue dog yourself, hire an instructor or head to classes, every pooch can benefit from some essential training tips. To start, consider having your puppy spayed or neutered when he’s of appropriate age, as dogs who have been “fixed” are less aggressive, more calm and potentially more open to training.

Choose house rules

When it comes to training, dogs respond best to consistency. It’s only fair to be clear with yourself and your family on what you expect of your new pup before you bring him home. Decide what he is and isn’t allowed to do. Can he sleep in your bed? Stake out a spot on the couch? What about rooms - are there any off limits? Clarifying your expectations avoids confusion and indecision later.

Teach him to come on command

One of the first basic commands your furry friend will need to master is “Come!” Always use his name when commanding him to come and follow up with positive reinforcement. As he develops, try the command in other situations, such as when his attention is elsewhere, and get him used to responding.

Reward good behavior and be quick with treats and praise

One of the first tenets of dog training is to always reward good behavior with positive reinforcement. Whether it’s a pat on the head, belly rubs, scratches in his favorite spot or a treat or toy, your pup lives to please you.

Related note: Ask your vet how many treats your dog should have and how often. During your pup's annual routine exam, we can offer nutrition advice and make sure he or she is at a healthy weight for their size. 

Puppy-proof your house

If you have kids, you’ll remember child-proofing your house to keep them safe and reduce risk of danger - or your prized possessions getting destroyed. Do the same for your puppy by providing a safe place to put him when he’s not being directly supervised, such as a crate or pen, with safe toys that are exclusively his.

Don’t delay teaching moments

Just as you want to reward good behavior, you want to recognize teaching moments as they happen.

Seasoned dog owners will tell you that pups live in the moment and need lots of repetition; if you’re going to enforce a rule or lesson, it has to be done immediately after they do the deed - they’ve already forgotten what they’ve done a few minutes later, so they will truly be confused and unable to make the association between their actions and corrections or training techniques unless they’re done right away. Consistent repetition gets results.

Remember: dogs do what makes them feel safe or happy

One of the most common mistakes we see dog owners make is that they attribute human emotions to their furry companions. While we love them dearly and they feel like a member of the family, they’re not human, meaning they aren’t vengeful creatures who plan to upset us or tick us off. They do what makes them feel happy or safe at the time, and that can be both good and bad.

Dog Training Tips | Huntersville Vet

Looking for a vet in Huntersville and Mecklenburg County?

We're always accepting new patients, so contact our veterinary hospital today to book your pet's first appointment.

Contact Us

Related Articles View All

Kennel Cough Symptoms in Dogs

If your dog is coughing and croaking they might have kennel cough. Today our Huntersville vets share some facts about this highly contagious respiratory disease in dogs and what you should do if your pooch is coughing.

Should I get my dog vaccinated? Why & When To Do It

Annual appointments for your dog's vaccinations and boosters may seem inconvenient, but our Huntersville vets believe that following the dog vaccination schedule below is the best way to protect your pup from catching a number of serious and potentially deadly diseases.

Why Cat & Dog Checkups Are Important

Annual cat and dog exams give your vet an opportunity to monitor your pet's health, check for early signs of disease, and provide preventive treatments to help protect your pet against potentially life-threatening conditions. Here, our Huntersville vets explain the importance of routine exams for pets.

How To Treat Hyperthyroidism In Cats

Hyperthyroidism is a common health issue for middle-aged and senior cats in South Charlotte, but what exactly is hyperthyroidism in cats? What are the symptoms, and how can hyperthyroidism in cats be treated? Our vets explain...

CallContact