Energy Level

Some dogs are couch potatoes; others run circles around us all day. Differences in breed, temperament, and personality all come into play when designing a successful training program. Living with your dog makes you the expert when it comes to knowing the ins and outs of her personality and just what will work for her. Paying attention to how active your dog is can help you learn about her personality and help you choose a trick that will be easy and fun to teach.

Highly Active

Active dogs love active tricks because they make the most of natural behaviors, such as spinning, jumping, barking, and pawing. When dogs have this much energy, take advantage of their abilities and teach appropriate tricks.

However, high-energy dogs get overstimulated easily and do best in short, concise training sessions with clear goals in mind. If you don't push a high-energy dog to work for long periods, she will fall in love with learning tricks.

If you are a beginner and are having a hard time keeping up with your dog, don't be afraid to hire a professional trainer to coach you. The more skills you gain as your dog's trainer, the better you will be able to help your dog understand what you are trying to teach her.

Less Active

Lower-energy dogs may be harder to get moving until they figure out what you want them to do. These dogs are thinkers, and they like to know where you're going with all this. Go slowly with your dog. Try to keep your sessions short, because such dogs often bore easily and hate repeating things too many times in a row. Training before a meal (using unique treats as rewards) often perks lower-energy dogs up and lets you get a good session in.

Medium-energy dogs are the easiest to work with because they allow you to make a lot of mistakes and be less organized. They don't mind repeating things over and over, and they are patient with you when you make mistakes or haven't planned out what you are trying to teach. Dogs with moderate energy levels are laid back and fun, turning their energy on like a rocket booster when they need to, but generally going along with whatever you're doing.

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