a girl is sitting outside in the grass, lovingly shaking hands with her German Shepherd dog

New Tricks for Old Dogs: 5 Simple Things You’ll Need to Teach

You can train a dog, whatever his age. Dogs are smart, and they may become slower as they age, but they don’t lose the intelligence they’re born with. If you’ve recently acquired an older dog, you can always look for a place in Florida where he can undergo dog obedience training in Loxahatchee. And when he comes home, you can reinforce that formal training with a little extra discipline from you, his new found friend. All you’ll need are 5 simple things.

1. Tasty Treats

Giving your dog a treat whenever he does something right is a way to reinforce good behavior because he knows he’ll get a treat after. And this works for dogs of all ages. Choose healthy treats that are tastier than his regular food, and make sure you’re giving him actual treats and not just leftover dog food from his dish. Using rewards to train your old dog will motivate him to try harder.

2. Age-Appropriate Meals

Knowing how much and how often you should feed your dog is crucial to his health, especially as they age. Just like a human, a dog’s metabolism also slows down as he ages. So if you continue to give your old dog the same amount of food as when he was younger, you may end up with a heavy, lazy, and obese dog. And this will work against him during his training.

3. A Warm and Cozy Place of His Own

When you come home tired from a long day at work, all you can think about is your soft bed, right? Your old dog would feel the same way. He may seem energetic and enthusiastic during your short training sessions, but once he sees his bed, he’ll want to just slump down and get a nice, long rest. So make sure to give him a warm and comfortable area in your home where he can lie down, rest, and stretch his legs without constriction.

Woman training her dog

4. Patience

Your senior canine friend is going to need your patience if you want him to learn new things. Older dogs have more limitations because of the changes in their body. It’s only important for you to know what those limitations are and how to work around them with patience. If your dog can’t jump the height because he has arthritis, then let go of that lesson and teach him something that’s within his capabilities. This will save both you and your dog a lot of stress. It will also save your dog from injuries.

5. Extra TLC

Older dogs can also go through emotional changes, like anxiety and depression especially if they see your frustration when they can’t get a lesson right. Try your best to stay calm and not to punish or get angry with him if he does something wrong. Instead, praise him for the right things he does, no matter how little. And don’t forget to spend some quality cuddling time with him whenever you can. This will also encourage him to work harder as you earn his love and trust.

Training a dog, no matter what his age is, will always need a lot of patience from you. This won’t happen overnight. So remember these 5 simple things, and you’ll soon find your old dog to be responsive to your commands and doing the things you’ve taught him without a hitch.