January is the right time to train dogs young or old

Does the new year have you pledging to make things better in your home? Does your dog need a refresher on manners? Did you adopt a new dog or puppy? Did you pledge to start running with your dog, or finally visit the dog park without fearing for your dog’s behavior?

Photo by Dawn Ellen Miller.

Photo by Dawn Ellen Miller

You’re not alone in a desire to start the year off right with your dog. And January is not only the beginning of a brand new year, but it’s also National Train Your Dog Month. Since 2010, the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) has sponsored this January holiday to promote the numerous benefits in training family dogs—both young and old—and to highlight how doggie education can be fun!

The APDT explains: “We selected January as the perfect month because so many dogs and puppies are adopted or purchased from breeders and brought home during the winter holidays. Our desire is to help these new pet parents start off the new year right with their newest family member.”

Benefits of dog training, according to the APDT, include:

  • Establishes a more positive relationship between pet and owner
  • Contributes to better understanding of your pet’s behavior (and misbehaviors)
  • Decreases potential “miscommunications” and day-to-day stress
  • Increases the safety of your family members and guests, as well as your own pet

If you’re interested in participating in National Train Your Dog Month and starting your new year off right, the DC Metro area has plenty of trainers and classes to fit your needs and schedule. Find a list of trainers by location on the Pet Lovers Companion website and a list of general trainers and behaviorists on the NOVADog Magazine’s Marketplace site. Learn more about the month’s events at www.trainyourdogmonth.com.