Dog training

Dog training

Below are some short articles and how-to guides on the most common training questions we get asked.

Crate Training

Crate training is an incredible tool for helping your dog to be calm and confident and feel safe and secure by utilising their natural ‘den’ instinct.

Crate training has a myriad of benefits and I’m often heard to say if there was one thing I could choose all dogs to be trained in, it would be crate training.

Crate training is about providing your dog with a safe place where they can go to rest, calm down, eat-in peace or sleep.
The key to effective crate training is to ensure you use your crate for good not evil. OK so not quite that extreme, but you do want to make sure being in the crate always results in a positive outcome for the dog. Your dog should enjoy going in its crate, it should want to go in its crate. Never use the crate for punishment.

That’s not to say the crate can’t be used to help prevent or curb unwanted behaviour – it can. But not as a punishment. The crate is taught as an alternative behaviour.

If your dog is taught to sit in its crate when visitors come to the door it won’t be able to jump on them.
In a multi-dog home, dogs can eat meals in their crates, preventing fights over food or one dog stealing food from another.
When a game of bitey-face goes too far dogs can have quiet time in their crates to calm down.
The list goes on. The benefits crate training provide in the home are endless, but it doesn’t stop there. Crate training can help dogs cope with vet visits, air and road commercial transport and out of home care in emergency situations.

Best of all, crate training is dead easy. Yes, that’s right. It will probably be one of the easiest things you’ve ever taught your dog.

Download Dr Sophia Yin’s guide to crate training (PDF) and get started today!

We recommend using a good quality collapsible wire crate and vet bed like these ones from Vebo Pet.

Huskies & Samoyeds – size L or XL
​Malamutes & Akitas – size XL or XXL
​Puppies – buy the crate size you want to end up with, and use a divider panel to reduce the size whilst your pup is growing.

Toilet Training

A dog is never too old to learn to toilet in the ‘right’ place. They may have many years of incorrect behaviours to ‘unlearn’ before they will pick up the new routine. In an older dog, perseverance is the key, so you will need to recommence training as if you are toilet training a puppy.
Choose a place you want your dog to go to the toilet. It should be one location. This can be inside on a special mat or newspaper or just outside, depending on where your dog will be when you are not home. If your dog is confined to a smaller room when you are not home, they
may need a second toileting spot for these occasions. There are 4 times when a dog is most likely to go to the toilet:

  • Just after eating
  • Just after playing
  • Just after waking
  • Just after release from confinement e.g. if he has been locked in the laundry while you have been out.

At these times you need to put your dog on a lead and collar and take him to the spot where you want him to go. Stay with him by holding the lead! You may need to wait 20-30 minutes. When he does go reward him immediately with a food reward and praise.

Read the rest of the article here: toilet training (PDF)

Recommended Dog Trainers

A short list of in-home trainers and schools we recommend and/or work with around the Melbourne area.

Group training schools:

Eastern Companion Dog Training – Ringwood area – Eastern suburbs

Four Paws K9 Training – Keilor Downs
Short courses also at: Craigeburn, Geelong, Glen Waverley, Parkville, West Footscray

InLine K9 – Geelong

The K9 Company – Doncaster, Eltham, South Morang

Secret Dogs Business – Cheltenham

Underdog Training – Hawthorn East, Bruswick East, Clayton South


In-home trainers:

Four Paws K9 Training – North-West Melbourne

InLine K9 – Geelong

The K9 Company – North-East, Eastern Melbourne

There & Back Again Dog Services – North-East & Eastern Melbourne

Secret Dogs Business – Southern Melbourne

Underdog Training – East, Southern Melbourne


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