Who has the time?!
By Leigh Laviolette // May 2017
It can be very difficult trying to fit a solid training session with our dogs into our busy lives. The good news is that short and sweet sessions can be more effective than trying to fit a large block of training into our day. We are able to better fit 2 or 3 minutes’ slots multiple times a day into our lives, than 1 or 2 big chunks of 15-20 minutes or more. The shorter sessions tend to be less stressful for both our dogs and ourselves, as if the dog is not getting it right we generally don’t mind stopping after a minute. However, if we have specifically set aside a large time slot to train our dogs and it isn’t going to plan it can be difficult to find another large chunk of time to train our dogs in!
Some of our favourite times to train is during the adverts of our favourite television program or while the kettle is boiling. These short sessions of 2-3 minutes would otherwise be times when I wouldn’t be doing anything and all I do is train from when I switch the kettle on to when it turns itself off. It may not seem like a lot but once you start training you realise just how much material you can get through in that very small time slot. If you did this regularly throughout the day, soon you would have trained for 20 minutes or more but, most likely, been much more successful at it.
Another good tip is to take a certain, small number of treats and train until those treats are used up!
Shorter sessions help make your dog motivated as well as, generally speaking, they are less stressful and don’t allow enough time for your dog getting tired or bored. Check out our blog post on taking breaks for what to do if you suspect your dog has become tired or confused!