Celebrating National Train Your Dog Month – January

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Your dog is naturally loyal, loving, and is your best friend; it does not need training on these things. Dogs only require training for the simple stuff. Training your dog on the elementary stuff can be an overwhelming task. But, if you get the right advice at the right time, it will make things a lot easier.

How about the beginning of the year? Dog lovers celebrate this month as an ode to training their canines and reaping the benefits thereof. Dog parents, trainers and experts set aside this month to come together and celebrate their shared love for canines.

During this month, the dog lovers also share tips and experiences with their furry friends. Nowadays, the internet and social media have become an essential source of information, advice, and tips. 

The Association of Pet Dog Trainers is credited for starting the movement that made this information available.   

national train your dog month
Celebrating National Train Your Dog Month - January I Love Veterinary - Blog for Veterinarians, Vet Techs, Students

Activities to do for National Train Your Dog Month

In this train your dog month, what are your plans? So how do I train my dog? Well, here are activities you can do:

  • Teach your furry friend new dog tricks. Your dog needs to learn a few new tricks in the new year. You think about something simple like sit, stay, rollover, or playing dead.
  • Treat your dog to Furry Fridays. In this train your dog month, you can set aside Friday evenings to spend time with your dog. You can take your dog for a walk or visit a dog museum. Alternatively, you can watch a dog movie with a special dog treat for your canine friend.
  • Share your dog training experiences with other dog lovers on social media. You can take to social media and share the milestones your dog has achieved in its training. It will also help to share your challenges. Use pictures and dog train videos to share your story.  

The Benefits of Dog Training

National Train your Dog Month is a perfect time to remind pet dog parents of dog training’s importance. Here are some top benefits of training:

  • Training helps to create a stronger bond between the dog and its owner. Through the dog training classes, the dogs and owners develop mutual respect and trust. Eventually, they establish a cordial relationship.  
  • Training dogs allows owners to spend more time with their dogs. Don’t treat training your dog as a job; it should be a fun way of getting to know your dog better.
  • Some things you can train your dog to do includes, how to roll over
  • Training helps to eliminate behavioral problems such as digging, barking, territorial marking, and jumping on guests.
  • Training your dog well enhances its security. If your furry friend has undergone obedience training, it might help during worse-case scenarios. For instance, it will prepare the owner and dog to react with proper canine leash-training techniques. Obedience will also help to stop the dog from eating or touching something that would harm it.    
Woman training dog on the beach offering it a treat

How Do You Locate a Professional Dog Trainer?

Finding a professional dog trainer will be beneficial to you and your dog. However, it is not a straightforward affair; you need to do some research. Use these guidelines to help you locate a good dog trainer:

Check for Certifications

You should find out the credited certificates dog trainers should have. Dog experts suggest that the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, Certified Dog Trainer, and Certified Dog Behavior Consultants are the main certifications to look out for. 

However, certifications don’t tell the whole story. Just because a dog trainer is certified does not mean that they are suitable. Some fake their credentials, while others are not passionate about what they do.

Dog Trainers Should be Good With People

According to dog training experts, a good trainer should relate well with people too. The trainer should understand human motivation and psychology. They should tell you how to train your dog at home and motivate you to do it.

Agility dog training

Examine the Dog Trainer’s Class

Ask yourself these pertinent questions concerning the dog training classes:

  • Are the dogs in the class happy? The dogs should be having fun in the training class.
  • Are the people in attendance having fun? Go for a class that allows family members to take part in the dog training sessions.
  • Is the ratio of trainers to dogs reasonable? A good trainer works with a maximum of six dogs.
  • What tools does the trainer use? All the tools used in training should be safe for your dog.
  • Is the class clean and secure? The trainer should operate in a clean environment.
  • The dog training sessions should not include physical punishment. If the trainer hits, jerks, or strings up the dog or hangs it; those are red flags.

Dog-Friendly Ways to Train your Pup

To be a better dog trainer, you should understand psychology. Research conducted to understand dog behavior revealed that dogs could be trained through being conditioned to react differently to different scenarios. So, how do you train your dog? Here are essential tips you can use in your puppy training:

Classical Conditioning

Classical conditioning is a widespread technique used to train dogs on basic and more complicated commands. The only challenge is that dogs seem to unlearn commands as quickly as they learn them.

In this type of training, you use your dog’s natural response (unconditioned stimulus) and a conditioned stimulus (something that is coupled with the natural response) to get a conditioned response.

Girl training Husky puppy in park


Reinforcement means an outcome or consequence linked to a particular behavior that generally enhances the chances of it recurring. It is something that boosts the probability of a response happening again.

For example, you can reward your puppy with a natural dog treat when it obeys a command to sit. This is called positive reinforcement. The snack increases the chances of your pup sitting down the next time you issue the order.

Reinforcement can be both positive and negative. Negative reinforcement involves removing something unpleasant from your pup’s environment when it has behaved well.

The Do’s and Don’ts of National Train Your Dog Mon

Understanding the dog’s psychology makes you a better trainer. However, there are certain things you should do, and some to avoid as you train a dog:


  • Focus on your furry friend and get to know its natural instincts. Don’t tease the dog with the commands you are teaching it.
  • Your rewarding system should be consistent. Only reward your canine when it completes the task.
  • It would be best if you were kind and patient in your dog training classes. Puppy training usually takes time. Remember, if your dog is poorly trained, it will reflect on your skills as a trainer.
  • Give your dog some time to understand the command, then follow it. Even if it might not get it the first time, be patient; it will eventually get it.
  • Once your dog understands a command, try it in different settings. This will ensure that your pup listens to you all the time.
  • The rewards should come immediately after the dog finishes its task.
  • Teach the dog one command at a time.
Man training dog on the beach, pointing index finger up


  • Never use your dog’s name to scold it, as it will associate its name with the scolding.
  • Don’t be too “nice” and reward the dog before it accomplishes the task.
  • Don’t reward your dog when it is misbehaving.
  • Don’t let your furry friend get away with things it is not supposed to.
  • Don’t physically punish your dog.

Our Recommended Online Dog Training Partners

As we’ve already established; finding a reputable dog training facilitator has it’s pro’s and cons. In today’s busy world, you might find some sense of achievement, if you were to embark (pun intended) in an online dog training course.

This way, you can spend some 1:1 quality bonding time with your pup and solidify your relationship.

Here are some of our top recommendations for online dog training courses:

Holly and Hugo Puppy & New Dog Training

Holly and Hugo online dog training courses

Holly and Hugo Reward-Based Dog Training

Holly and Hugo reward-based dog training

Holly and Hugo Dog Commands for Beginners

Holly and Hugo dog commands for beginners

Holly and Hugo Animal Training & Pet Sitting

Holly and Hugo animal training and pet sitting

Holly and Hugo Dog Socialization and Obedience MasterClass

Holly and Hugo dog socialization and obedience masterclass


By now, you know how to train your dog. It is crucial to note that the right training and socialization can sort out dog behavioral issues. National Train Your Dog Month is an excellent opportunity to learn more about how to train your dog. 

After all, shouldn’t each month be a dog month?

Training enhances better relationships between dogs and their owners, which can be rewarding. So, embark on a dog training mission with the skills acquired from this post.

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