Training and Motivation

Training shelter dogs potentially increases their adoptability by teaching them behaviors that make them more desirable to adopters. A good training program will motivate dogs to learn and provide them with mental stimulation. It will also educate staff, volunteers, and owners about the value and fun of basic dog training. In order for training to be effective, consistency is key. Training sessions should ALWAYS be fun for the dog and the staff. Staff and volunteers must always have the following tools on hand when working with dogs:

  • Treat bag (with treats that will motivate a dog)
  • Training tools (no-pull harness or head collar to help with training as needed)
  • Quick access to a desirable toy

Weekly shelter dog obedience classes are also recommended for every shelter if possible. These classes help staff and volunteers learn training techniques, train the shelter dogs, and allow behavior staff to observe the dogs in a group setting.