A Happy Hound Has a Sense of Purpose—Tips on Training for Your Pooch

June 1st, 2022

Living with a sense of purpose is important for people. Studies have shown time and again that a sense of purpose keeps us healthier, both in mind and body. A sense of purpose is key to achieving wellbeing and happiness. 

This is also true for your best friend in the world—your pooch. 

A sense of purpose—or knowing what their role is in the pack, or your family—is essential to your dog’s wellbeing. And a healthier and happier dog usually equates to a healthier and happier owner. The relationship between you and your dog is a virtuous cycle.

A key to imparting a sense of purpose in your dog, of course, is training. But training programs come in all shapes and sizes. As do dogs. So what should you look for in a training program? What’s right for your pooch—and you as well? What role will you play in your pup’s training? 

Here are a five things to consider when sending your pooch off to school.

What do you want to get out of the program?

Before sending your doggo off to school, make sure you know what you want him or her to learn. Do you just want your dog to learn tricks? Do you want him or her to learn to behave? Some dogs need to be rehabilitated before they can learn to obey your commands. Some dogs need to be socialized. Some pooches need to overcome separation anxiety. Some dogs need obedience training. So, have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish and consult with your trainer what can or cannot be achieved based on your dog’s disposition or needs.

What kind of program would you want for your dog?

How do you want your dog treated in the program? Sometimes what is necessary to train your dog may not be what you want for him or her. Crating, for example. Or the use of choke chains. At the end of the day, the training program needs to work for you—philosophically and emotionally—as well as for your pooch.

How qualified are the trainers?

Trainers are a mixed bunch. And, again, training programs come in all shapes and sizes as well. Just because a trainer is certified doesn’t mean they’re a good fit for you. Choosing a trainer or training program is as much an emotional decision as it is based on objective qualifications or measures. And there are trainers who aren’t certified who are incredibly talented and professional. At the end of the day, what you want from a training program is professionalism and accountability, as well as loads of love for your dog.

What’s your role in the training program?

Dog training is as much about you as it is about your dog. In other words, you may need to change your behavior as well. So, how involved will your be in your pup’s training? Will the trainer advise you on how to conduct yourself with your dog beyond the training period? Just like education for one’s child, training your pooch is a family endeavor.

Can you get referrals?

As with any service, referrals are key. Go online to check for testimonials. If possible, make time to speak to these people and ask questions that are important to you. Again, the trainer has to work for you personally as well as for your pup.

Training for your dog is all about teaching behaviors that will help them thrive as a member of your family and with other people and pups. It’s about helping them find their sense of purpose—their place in the pack. It’s about helping them find what makes them happy—which, you will find, is really to make you happy.

Visit Happy Hound in Oakland for all you pet’s health and wellness needs, including professional dog grooming, award-winning dog training programs, safe and comfortable dog boarding, as well as doggie daycare and veterinary services. Happy Hound offers various areas to accommodate every size and temperament of dog. Dogs that stay at Happy Hound get access to fresh air, comfortable dog beds and enjoy the chance to socialize. Call or visit Happy Hound in Oakland, California, for all your dog and puppy care needs.