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Dog Training Tips

July 15, 2018

Does your dog know basic commands, such as Sit, Stay, Come, Heel, and Lay Down? If not, Fido may need to go back to school. Training isn’t just about teaching your furry buddy proper petiquette: it’s also crucial for safety reasons. Read on as a Salem, VA vet offer some helpful dog training tips.


Start with basic doggy obedience commands. The five listed above – Sit, Stay, Come,Heel, and Lay Down – are the most important ones. Teach your canine pal one at a time, and don’t move on until Fido has mastered each one.

In addition to mental stimulation through training, keeping your dog physically fit is essential. Discover fun and effective ways to ensure Fido stays in great shape with our ‘Keeping Fido Fit’ article.


Work with Fido every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Actually, 15-30 minute sessions are ideal. Dogs don’t have very long attention spans, so your furry pal may get bored with long classes.

Keep It Pawsitive

Never punish your furry friend for not picking something up quickly enough. Also, never work with your canine student when you are feeling stressed, sad, or grumpy. Dogs are absolute experts at picking up their human buddies’ feelings. Your pup will soon notice your mood. Sensing ‘bad vibes’ may cause him to form a bad impression about training. That’s the last thing you want! Just focus on rewarding Fido for making good progress.

Consistency Is Key

Consistency is very important when it comes to training dogs. When teaching vocal commands, be sure to use the same phrasing every time. For example, don’t say ‘Fido, lay down,’ one day, and then ‘Go lay down right now’ the next. This will just confuse your four-legged pal!


If you give your fuzzy student a report card with straight A’s, he’ll probably just do that cute head tilt dogs do, and then try to eat it. Offer your canine friend more tangible rewards: specifically, edible ones. Pieces of kibble, deli meat, or hot dogs are all good options. Praise is also important. Don’t be shy about telling your pup that he’s a good boy, and offering ear scritches. Understanding your dog’s health is crucial for effective training. Explore our ‘Diagnostics’ services to get insights into Fido’s health and ensure he’s always ready to learn and thrive.

Advanced Training

Many dogs really enjoy learning new things. Once your pooch knows basic commands, why not move on to advanced training? The commands to Drop it and Leave it can be very useful. Or, show your cute pet some cute tricks, like Shake or Roll Over.

Please reach out to us, your local Salem, VA veterinary clinic, anytime. We are dedicated to providing great veterinary care!

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