If you take the time to train your dog the essentials, you are building a foundation for a lifelong enjoyable relationship with your pet. You can even teach an old dog a few new tricks with the right strategy. Here are a few neat dog training pointers.

If you have gotten a dog or puppy and you have crate trained them you should always try not to keep them in there for more than four or five hours at a time unless it’s overnight or it’s just a once-in-awhile thing. If you have to have them in the crate for longer periods of time, a dog probably wasn’t the best option for you.

When walking your dog on a leash, never keep the leash too tight. A tight leash creates a counter pressure response and can cause the dog to become uptight or agitated. Your dog may then pull, rather than walk correctly on the leash. Being less restrictive with your leash hold will allow for a more pleasant walking experience.

Just because your dog is obeying you, do not assume that they are done learning. Your dog is always learning. Never stop reinforcing good behavior. This is especially important if you move. A new surrounding can be very distracting for a dog. You might have to reteach them a great deal.

Play with your dog often. In order to train your dog efficiently, it is important to develop and nurture a bond between the two of you. Make sure you are taking the time out of your day to play with your dog. It will be fun and stress-reducing for both of you.

House training your puppy can be a lot faster and more effective using a crate. The crate should never be used for punishment. The puppy should be put in it at night and in between times of interaction with his owner. His natural instinct is to not relieve himself in his sleeping area.

Before crating your dog always allow them the opportunity to eliminate. Young dogs, in particular, have to relieve themselves quite frequently. You can’t expect them to not urinate or even defecate in the crate if they haven’t been given the opportunity to do so before they are crated.

Reinforce desirable behavior from your dog. Don’t just rely on treats though. You can reinforce these behaviors through positive attention as well. Petting your dog and talking to him in cheerful tones can be a good incentive too. So can a new squeaky toy or a trip to the park.

The key to successful dog training is to start them as soon as possible. No matter how old your dog may be it is never too late to get them started. While it may take a little longer, you can still achieve a great deal of success. You can start training most puppies after they are about 6 weeks old. This is the perfect time to get the ground rules setup for a calmer more obedient dog.

When your dog understands the benefits and rewards of learning the tricks you teach it, the desire to learn is often as rewarding as the reward itself. Your dog will be happier, and so will you.