Owning a dog is not just a chance to have a playful companion to play with, he’s a chance to keep up with your exercise, live longer from the company, and often a source of unconditional love. However, you still have to be the master in the relationship, and dog obedience training can make both your lives easier.

1) You can keep your home clean: Keeping your dog obedient makes it far easier to set boundaries within the home about what the dog can do and where. That often means learning things like bladder control, as in when and where it’s permissible for your dog to relieve himself, and when not. You might even establish particular rooms and even piece of furniture as out of bounds. Truly successful training might even keep dogs from under your feet when you’re busy in the kitchen trying to prepare a meal and would prefer to do so without tripping hazards happily lapping around in the hopes you drop some food.

2) You save time: Getting your dog from one point to another, be it into another room, the bathtub, in or out of the house, or especially in and out of a crate, is something you’ll be doing from time to time. Obedience training means you only have to give one command or signal for this to happen.

3) You protect your furniture and possessions: Even if you allow your dog to hop on chairs and couches, there’s a difference between napping with him and him starting to toss around the pillows or knock lamps off the end tables. Simple obedience commands keep horseplay from turning into shopping trips to fix or replace stuff.

4) You protect other people and dogs: Many dogs are known to get aggressive when on the leash, as they might feel a need to defend their pack master. A simple heel command can keep your dog from attacking other living beings.

5) You protect your own dog: Dogs are loved as much as people, sometimes more so, but they are not, in fact, people and sometimes get into things they shouldn’t.

So, there are obviously benefits to dog obedience training that can range from situations of convenience to urgent and even emergency matters. Still, it’s one thing to decide to go about dog obedience training and quite another to actually go through it. Starting out with a few simple commands for your pup to master is always a great starting point since they can be used to start a learning curve and as building blocks for more robust training.

However, you eventually have to make a second decision. Do you go with your four-legged friend to dog obedience training school? Or do you try it on your own?

The Positives and Negatives of Hiring A Trainer

There are advantages and drawbacks to both approaches. Doing it on your own is often cheaper, as you can rely on things like do-it-yourself resources or even online YouTube tutorials to teach your dog obedience in the comfort of your own home, at your own pace. It’s often far cheaper too, in the long run.

Potential drawbacks do exist though. Will you have the discipline to keep going until the very end? Also, are you going to miss the insight, experience, and expertise of a professional trainer?

Going to a professional dog obedience training school or class is often the other option. Here, it’s very easy to keep to the curriculum and schedule, because someone will know if you miss classes. If you miss too many, you might even be asked to stop coming since you’d be holding the class back. On top of the accountability, you’d also be working under the tutelage of a seasoned instructor who will help make sure you’re teaching your dog right, so your chances of success are likely to be higher.

The first possible disadvantage is cost, as you do have to pay for such schooling. Also, it can be kind of a scheduling hassle to get your dog ready to go, get there, do the class, and then return home, especially if vehicular transport is one of the issues causing you desire for dog obedience. Also, if you live in a rural area or small city, you might not have many options, if any to choose from.

Dog obedience can take many forms, but there are also many good reasons why you should do it at least once with your furry friend early in your relationship together. Refresher training later on also helps a lot.