Labrador Training Tips

When undertaking the goal of Labrador training, it's important to consider the methods available and goals you wish to attain with your dog. Training of any kind takes patience, consistency and carefully planned steps. There are many ways in which you can effectively train a dog, but recent research has indicated that dogs, especially Labs, respond more effectively to positive and non-violent training methods. Any reward-based system, such as offering treats, praise or positive experiences for good behavior, can encourage dogs and puppies to eagerly continue with learning and socialization.

Training Methods

There are several methods available that can be effective for Labrador training. You may wish to undertake this activity on your own or locate a qualified training school or instructor to handle the job for you. In either case, you'll want to be sure the following areas are covered:

  • Solidify the results of learning basic commands, such as sit, stay, down and heel, before moving on to more difficult tricks, habits or problem areas.
  • Early socialization will be a positive influence for the remainder of the dog's life. Be sure to familiarize your Lab with other members of your family, including children, and expose the dog to strangers or crowds, such as you might find at a beach, park or public event.
  • Because of their adult size, proper leash training will result in more efficient and expedient exercise routines.
  • Due to the excitable nature and craving for social interaction often displayed in the Labrador breed, you'll want to spend some time on training your dog to stay off furniture and refrain from greeting others by jumping, excessive licking or playful nipping or biting.
  • Harsh training methods should be avoided. The implementation of positive reinforcement will strengthen the bond you build with your dog and encourage a mutual trust necessary for proper behavior in all situations.

Goals for Labrador Training

No matter whether you're conducting Labrador training for puppies or an older dog, it's important to set forth goals and do your best to stick to them. Particular goals should depend heavily upon your lifestyle and the temperament of the individual dog. For example, if you work a full-time job and the dog will be left at home alone for several hours during the day, you must consider whether or not crate training should be an option, and also focus on breaking any separation anxiety that the dog might experience.

Training goals will likely be very different depending on the age of the dog as well. Older dogs may need help developing more workable social skills or curbing negative habitual behavior, such as chewing or excessive barking. For puppies, you may have standard goals for teaching simple well-mannered behavior, or you may wish to move into more advanced skills. Specialized training programs are available for dogs that will be involved in social companionship situations, sporting events, dog shows or farm and police work.