Essential Dog Training Tools For Behavior, Agility and Intelligence
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Using the right dog training supplies can make a world of difference. Unmotivated, stubborn pups can become little angels when they sniff out their favorite treats and notorious mischief-makers can be transformed when you engage their active minds with dog puzzle toys. Whether you’re teaching your pooch some basic commands, trying to house train them or correct unwanted behavior, there are numerous dog training supplies that can make the whole process much easier.
If you want to find out which dog training equipment is a must-have for any pet owner, you’ve come to the right place. From bark collars, training apps, and dog puzzle toys to the most trainable dogs, this guide on training supplies will answer any questions you might have.
Why do you need training tools for a dog?
If you want to train your dog quickly and efficiently, dog training tools can be a lifesaver. Sure, it is possible to train a dog without using any additional equipment, but proper supplies ensure you’ll have better results in a shorter period of time. And, if we’re being honest, who doesn’t want that?
To really reap the benefits these handy gadgets and tools can provide, you can’t just get the first whistle or clicker you see and expect they’ll do all the work for you. You need to choose items that will address your dog’s behavioral problem and match their personality.
How to Choose the Right Dog Training Equipment
In all honesty, what works for some dogs might not work for your pooch. You might read a stellar review of a new training gadget, only to realize your dog couldn’t be more indifferent when you try to use it.
The reason for this is that there are no universal solutions. Of course, the basic methods of dog training remain the same, but the important thing people tend to overlook is their dog’s personality.
After all, can you expect a couch potato to be miraculously interested in a doggy treadmill? There are 3 questions that should influence your choice of dog training supplies:
- Is it compatible with the training method you are using, and does it address the behavior problem you are trying to correct?
- Will it motivate, interest or engage your dog?
- Does it really work?
The answer to the second question is something only you can answer. For everything else, you’ll find answers in this comprehensive guide to training supplies.
Dog Behavior Training Tools
Without a doubt, dog behavior training is where pet parents have the most trouble getting results. From destructive chewing, constant barking, or separation anxiety, there is a myriad of behavioral issues that can be hard to correct. Here are essential supplies that can get you to your training goal:
1. Dog training collars
More often known as the dreaded dog bark collar, this training aid doesn’t have to be cruel. Even though there are still better ways of getting your pooch to behave than using disruptive dog training tools such as dog training collars, there are some new and improved models that take out the barbarity but keep the efficiency. Try out a citronella bark collar that discourage your dog from barking by releasing a lemony scent as opposed to shocking them.
2. Dog training clicker
A staple item in any dog trainer’s supplies, this handy tool will transform the way your dog learns commands. Clicker training is based on a positive reinforcement method, a tried-and-true technique that is both humane and highly efficient; clickers are inexpensive, cute, and do a great job. All you need to do is grab some yummy treats and you’re all set!
3. Dog treats for positive reinforcement training
I have yet to meet a dog that doesn’t go bananas for treats. Even the pickiest of pooches start licking their paws when they see bite-sized tastiness coming their way. But, instead of simply giving out yummies, you should use them as a reward for a job well done. Training treats for dogs are a must for clicker training or any form of positive reinforcement training, as they motivate dogs to correct their behavior and learn commands.
4. Crate training and pet pens
When trained properly, dogs can come to view pens or crates as their private little safe spaces rather than a scary confinement. However, crate training is not a good option for every pooch out there (it can even be counterproductive in some cases), so you should never force your dog to spend time in an enclosed space if they don’t want to. If your dog is not overly anxious or frightened in the crate, invest in a sturdy, comfy option or if a playpen is more your thing, look into a secure pen for crate training a puppy or adult dog. Whichever you choose, don’t forget to follow all the important dog training tips on crating practices!
5. Puppy pads
When you’re housebreaking a dog, regardless of their age, you’ll need to make sure there are no little accidents around your home while the pooch is adjusting. During the transition from not being potty trained to knowing where they can do their business, puppy pads are a necessity. While you’re house training a puppy or an adult rescue, these pads will help save your home from being damaged by urine. And, instead of instantly having to learn to go potty outside, your dog will adapt more easily when it’s a transition from a specific place in the home (pads) to doing it during walks!
Dog Agility Training Equipment
What better way to tire out an active, energetic dog than agility training? Instead of facing obstacles in dog behavior training, make some obstacles of your own and make training a fun, interesting activity. You don’t need fancy obstacle courses or expensive dog agility equipment to transform your backyard or guest room into a training heaven for your dog. This is what you’ll need:
1. Dog tunnel
Don’t get fooled by the seemingly plain looks of dog tunnels. A basic obstacle in agility training, this item will keep your pooch occupied for hours on end. Whether it’s running from one end to another or zipping through the tunnel, there is no shortage of energy-spending activities. Most tunnels are easy to put away and set up and, most importantly, your dog will love playing with it. Although a dog agility tunnel falls into the outdoor dog exercise equipment category, you can also use it inside your home. Just make sure you remove all valuable and breakable things from the room first.
2. Poles and jump obstacles
Regardless of whether you’re training your dog to compete on an agility course or just want to tire them out, weave poles and jump obstacles are a great tool. Stimulating your dog mentally, as well as providing physical activity, this piece of dog agility equipment can be an endless source of fun, both for the dog and their owner. There are a variety of suitable obstacles for both beginners and pros, and the assorted versatility of said obstacles offer will keep your pooch sharp and fit. And, let’s face it, you’ll have fun with it too!
Intelligence Training Supplies
Is your dog a canine version of Einstein? And, no, I’m not asking if they have white, fluffy hair. If you have a four-legged smarty pants in your life, you know it’s not all that easy. Sure, smart dogs are usually the most trainable dogs, but it’s often difficult to keep them engaged and interested in most activities. Another important trait of smart dogs is that they get bored easily, which is why it’s crucial to keep them mentally stimulated and engaged to prevent destructive behavior. And there is nothing better than using…
Dog puzzle toys
Intelligent dogs always need a challenge. Throwing them a Frisbee or giving them the best dog toys to chew on is simply not going to cut it. Interactive toys, especially dog puzzles, are a great way to keep smart dogs entertained and focused on a task at hand. Even if your dog is not the sharpest pooch you know, their problem-solving skills can drastically improve if you give them dog puzzle toys rather than regular ones.
An all-around favorite, Kong chew toys, will occupy your pooch and discourage them from being destructive, especially in your absence. Fill this puzzle toy with peanut butter or tasty treats and watch your dog try to figure out how to get to the yumminess inside.
Easiest to Train Breeds
You’ve probably heard it a dozen times already: some dog breeds are easier to train than others. But, is that completely true?
I’ve personally known some smart dogs that had no problem picking up new tricks as well as adorable, dummy Labradors that couldn’t fetch. Some dogs are so smart they understand everything you tell them, but simply refuses to do anything they are not willing to do. Getting a certain type of dog is not a guarantee that your new pooch will be easy to train, but there are definitely breeds that are considered to be the most trainable dogs out there, and the list includes:
- Border Collies
- German Shepherds
- Golden Retrievers
- Doberman Pinscher
These dog breeds are believed to have a higher IQ than the average canine, and, therefore, they’re more likely to pick up new commands and instructions. However, a dog’s intelligence is not the only factor that makes them trainable. Their unique personalities and eagerness to please their owners will play a bigger part in the training process than how smart they are.
Training your dog doesn’t have to be stressful and hard. With the right dog training equipment, you can speed up the process and ensure your pooch becomes a roaring success. Just make sure to choose supplies that will be compatible with your dog’s temperament and personality, and you’ll get the results you’ve been hoping for! In case you’ve got a new puppy and you’re struggling to get them to behave, make sure to check out our guides on puppy training tips and essentials!