How Long Does It Take To Train A Dog?


This is a common question of many owners, and naturally the answer varies as it depends upon the dog and the owner.  With our fast paced society it has turned many people needing instant gratification and instant results.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, however many times it is expected in unrealistic situations.

As I talked about in a previous blog, our expectations of our dogs are often not realistic.  We feel they should know what we want, when we want it, and we expect them to obey our every command 100 percent of the time.  Wow, even writing that down is unrealistic!  If there is a living creature that can fulfill those demands I want to know who and what it is.

Training takes time.  I have said it a million times before the dog did not acquire these bad habits in a day they are in no way shape of form going to be gone in a day.  This is where the problems come into in dog training.  Our expectations are greater than our dog can give us.   When we don’t make progress fast enough we get discouraged and often we are the ones that retreat back to our old ways, of letting the dog control our world.  Training a dog is actually a lifestyle.  This is something that needs to be incorporated in our everyday living.  It really is amazing how few people ever even do this.  They get a dog, bring it home, and expect it to know exactly what to do.  They have visions of the perfect dog.  A dog that does everything to fulfill their needs, yet they are the ones not willing to fulfill the dogs needs of one of the most important items, training.

The demand for a quick fix in dog behavior modification led to many trainers using a remote collar for training.  It goes by several names, e-collar, electric collar, shock collar, whatever name, it is one in the same.  Trainers found this collar would actually cut training time down significantly for the dog.  Owners were thrilled as they were achieving their goals much quicker.  Many ways to use the collar also have been used.  There are trainers who use the collar on its highest setting from the start, and feel that is the best way to let the dog know you don’t like what they are doing.  My personal opinion is that using the collar in that way is the same as telling you to put your hand on the hot burner of the stove.  Guess what, you were burnt so badly, you will never put your hand on the hot stove again!  Seems wrong to me.  Would it not have just been easier to teach you how to use the stove properly instead of hurting you with it?  Take the electric fence for example, the dog goes to leave the property he is shocked.  The dog quickly complies, as he doesn’t want that shock again.  I can’t tell you how many times I have seen dogs not even go down their driveways when the don’t even have the collar on, because they are afraid of the shock.  Why don’t the owners just teach the dog to stay in the yard?  They don’t have time.  So often they will say they are getting the collars for the benefit of the dog.   It isn’t the benefit of the dog; do you think the dog wants to learn by getting shocked?  It’s for the benefit of the owner because it takes less time.  But at what cost I ask you?

Training a dog with positive reinforcement is the least amount of stress on the dog.  Using a reward based system to teach the dog what you are asking is sometimes pushed aside, because it takes time.  Owners will say they don’t want their dogs to be trained with treats.  They expect their dog to do it just for the “love” of obeying!  I don’t understand how our society has gotten this way.  Why are we so quick to put our instant gratification needs in front of the dogs needs to learn in the least stress free environment?  I don’t understand.  These are the same owners that say their dog is like a child to them.  Would you want your children learning in a highly stressful situation, just so they can learn faster?  I wouldn’t.

If you would like help training your dog in a positive reward based system please call Kim Paciotti at 704-877-7821 or email  Visit our website at for more information.   Also visit the Carolinas Newest Premier Dog Training Club at

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