With at least 89.7 million canine companions living in households across the U.S, there can be no doubt about how much we love our dogs. But can a family dog learn to become a homestead dog? The answer is yes if you effectively teach your dog.
An effective homestead dog needs to be a good all-rounder. They need to be safe around livestock, helpful on the farm, able to keep the family and homestead safe, and of course, provide companionship to the family. While this may seem like a big ask, with careful and consistent training, it is possible to teach your dog how to become a useful and happy homestead dog.
How To Teach Your Dog To Be A Homestead Dog
Teach Your Dog New Skills
You will hopefully have already trained your family dog – or be planning to train your new puppy – so they will have the basic skills to be an obedient and well-behaved dog. Then if you teach your dog, your family dog can also be your farm dog. This will mean that your dog can spend time with you while you are outside busy on your homestead, without you having to worry about what your dog is doing.
If you already have a family dog, then they will have probably spent a lot of time exploring and already learned quite a lot about life on a homestead. But what’s important is to teach your dog about safety behavior and good manners to ensure they help rather than hinder the running of your homestead.
Keeping Your Dog Calm On The Homestead
If you find that your homestead dog gets overexcited when they are outside with you, causing them to bark excessively and disturbing the other animals, there are dog-friendly devices designed to help.
Sometimes referred to as anti-bark collars, these are ideal for dogs that get overstimulated or anxious and offer a great solution for barking issues. They work by emitting an ultrasonic frequency sound that only dogs can hear, which gets their attention and distracts the dog from barking. Only the dogs can hear the sound, so it won’t affect your other animals.
Start Homestead Dog Training Early
When it comes to teaching your dog how to behave and work on the homestead, just like with any kind of dog training, it’s always best to start at a young age. While they are on a leash, take your puppy or dog around your homestead to meet the animals.
Your dog may not always get a friendly welcome from some of the animals. But it will help your dog get to know them and their distinctive behaviors.
You should make this a regular routine. Your goal is for your dog to be outside with you, off the leash, and knowing that their job is just to stay close and watch. Just like with basic dog training skills, always remember to reward your dog for good behavior with treats and plenty of praise.
When you build on their basic dog training skills, a good homestead dog can offer so much more than simple companionship. Once they have confidence and discipline, your homestead dog can be a hunter, farm security and even help you to herd the animals.
You can teach your dog to be a homestead dog by starting early in his or her training. Make sure you keep calm and keep your dog calm too. Make sure to teach your dog in steps, one skill at a time. Routine and repetition is very important for your dog. In the end you will have great homestead dog you can be proud of.