When people think of dog training, they tend to think of basic obedience. While teaching dogs how to behave with the sit, stay and come commands is of course important, training your dog how to perform tricks is just as vital.

You can teach your dog new tricks that will impress and amaze your friends by practicing for just five or ten minutes every day. Here’s why you should invest that time in your dog’s trick training.

Strengthen Your Bond

A lot of dog owners find that trick training is a whole lot more fun than obedience training because there’s less pressure on both the owner and the dog to get the command perfectly right every time. The result is that training sessions tend to be more exciting and enjoyable for both dog and owner. This interaction strengthens the bond between you, resulting in a happier and more contented dog.

Provide Stimulation

The best behaved dogs are the ones that experience a range of stimulating activities throughout their day. Providing your dog with both physical and mental stimulation will make him more relaxed, healthier and happier – and in turn better behaved. Trick training is not only physically stimulating for your much loved hound, it makes them think and use their problem solving abilities. This keeps them happy in the short term and it keeps them mentally sharp in their old age.

Use Up Excess Energy

If you have a dog which seems to have never ending amounts of energy, or perhaps you have an adolescent pup who never seems to get tired, then trick training is for you. Some dogs can go on walks for hours and never show signs of slowing down, but the effort that learning a new trick requires can tire them out in a matter of minutes. For dogs with excess energy, trick training can help them relax.

Improved Obedience

If you think that trick training is a waste of time, and that your time would be better spent honing your dog’s basic obedience, think again. By working with your dog to teach him tricks, your pooch will be more likely to listen to you and follow your commands in all aspects of dog training. They will soon learn that obeying your commands not only gets them rewards such as treats, but pleases you – and to a dog that is the greatest reward of all.