Want to get the most out of your training?  It is important to start with a trusting relationship.  Trust cannot be built overnight and building a relationship with your pet is a dynamic process that takes time, but I can assure you that you will reap what you sow.

To start off, it is vital to understand canine behavior.  The more you know and understand about dogs, and your specific breed, the stronger bonds you can build.  When you are first getting to know your pet, it is important to make time to observe them.

It is important to note your dog’s preferences, as part of getting to know them:

  • where and when they prefer to rest,
  • who they prefer to spend their time with,
  • what their favorite foods are,
  • if they engage with toys and play on their own,
  • what toys do they choose to play with,
  • if they appear to enjoy cuddles and being petted,
  • what is their favorite spot,
  • what motivates them
  • and what contexts may cause them fear, stress, anxiety, etc.

You can offer them toys, boxes, puzzle feeders, coconuts, etc., and watch to see how they respond.  If they do choose to interact with the item, feel free to give them a treat or positively reinforce them so you see that same behavior again in the future.  Once you begin to better understand your furry companion you will be able to use this to your advantage in the formative stages of training and it will allow you to better set your pet up for success.

Remember that training your pet is one way to build that trusting relationship you’ve always hoped for.

Additional ideas on how to build a lasting relationship with “man’s best friend” are to try lowering yourself down to the floor and play on their level.  Sometimes being larger, taller, or bigger than your pet can be intimidating, so lowering yourself down and making yourself appear smaller can allow your pet to feel more comfortable and ensure you are not seen as intimidating or a threat to them (especially if you have a small or fearful pup).

Spend time with them and develop a routine:

  • you can take them for walks,
  • hand-feeding your dog,
  • training sessions in & out of the home,
  • play games like fetch,
  • tug of war,
  • or hide and seek.
  • You can even hide treats around your home and allow them to search and find them.

If your dog is properly socialized and does well in public spaces, you can bring them with you on errands, trips, and even out to dog-friendly restaurants.  Any activity that allows you to enjoy time together and get to know each other better will allow your relationship to grow.

Be consistent in your communication, training, and expectations of them.  Connecting with your pup allows you to better influence their behavior.  After all, when you have a strong relationship with your dog, they will want to make you happy.

Dog trainer holding a new puppy
When your dog feels secure and loved, the chances of unwanted behavior decrease.  It is hard to come home to a dog that chewed on your shoe, nibbled on the wall, got into the trash, consistently barked, or even messed in the house while you were out.  Remember that dogs don’t behave like this because they want to make you angry.  They often demonstrate these behaviors as a result of stress, anxiety, or boredom. 

Ensure your pup is receiving daily enrichment and getting the mental and physical stimulation they need based on the nature of their breed, energy level, and personality and you will see these problem behaviors lessen as they grow in their trust of you that you will reliably fulfill their needs.  Dogs, like children, behave better when they have a secure relationship that demonstrates consistency.


We all understand that life is and gets busy. When life gets in the way of training your dog, that’s where we come in. We have different services to help your dog get what they need, especially the training, to make your life richer having them in it. Your dog is your companion and it shouldn’t feel like a chore working with them. We help owners with their dog training problems to repair the relationship. 

The less your dog pulls on the leash, destroys your furniture, bark at every visitor, the less stressed you are and the better the relationship between you and your furry best friend.

Locations in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale. We are Miami’s most reputable reward-based dog and puppy trainers! Follow us on FB and IG @ApplauseYourPaws and @AYPBroward. We’d love to help you learn how you don’t have to be RUFF to teach your dog stuff.

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