Where is the best place to do a training session with your dog?

There are many thoughts on the best places to train a dog. Training sessions should always be pleasant and fun experiences, but they do also need to rely on “real life” situations. You may want to start the sessions in a quiet place, but gradually take your dog to a less quiet location.

Wherever the location, it should always be safe, secure, pleasant and, if possible, well lit.

When your dog is a puppy and you’re just beginning to train her, it’s always best to train her in a quiet area with little distraction, like a family room or a bedroom.

In fact, you can also use this time to teach her to “go to your place” when you need her to settle down, or if she’s underfoot. First, make sure she’s mastered the down command. Then select a room or rooms (it can be several areas) and choose the command (“place,” or “bed,” etc.). Say the command and lure her to those areas you selected. As soon as she enters that area, praise her lavishly.

If you want to add “down”, first say “place,” lure her, and then when she shows up immediately say “down.” Only give her the treat if she finishes the whole command.

As the dog gets older, there will be times when it will be appropriate to conduct a training session in a busier place; such as when you really need her to concentrate on her focusing (doing “sit/stay” on a busy corner takes intense focus for the dog).

It’s also important to remember that dog training doesn’t just have to be limited to the session. For instance, if you’re walking her, you might conduct a spontaneous “heel” command; if you’re both stopped at a traffic light, you may want to do a spur-of-the-moment “sit.”

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