A Veterinarian Answers All of Your Questions About Training Your Pet

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Whether you’re wanting your pet to show off party tricks or just to listen to you sometimes, training is an important part of every pet owner’s journey! While you may be able to do some training at home, your veterinarian or local dog trainer can offer up personalized tips for your pet. To get advice on everything from sit and stay to housebreaking, we’ve teamed up with Hill’s Pet Nutrition and veterinarian Dr. Kristin Wuellner. Keep reading to see Dr. Wuellner’s answers to our user-submitted questions:

Every family’s pet journey looks a little different, but one thing remains the same: We all want our furry friends to be healthy and happy. Hill’s provides science-backed nutrition for every age, size and need and makes it easier to support your pet’s needs. See how Hill’s science-backed nutrition can give your best friend their best life.

There are so many housebreaking instructions out there. What do you suggest is best for training a 6-month-old puppy? I'd like to crate train.

Six months of age is the perfect time to start puppy obedience and training classes! Research reputable trainers and classes in your area for your puppy to attend. Crate training can be highly beneficial for many pets and pet owners, but remaining consistent and using positive reinforcement is key. Talk to your veterinarian about who they recommend in your area.

My lab is great at following commands until there's another dog around. Any suggestions to keep his attention?

In my personal experience, most Labs are food motivated. Using a small treat for grabbing and rewarding their attention can go a long way!

How do I train a kitten to use a litter box?

I'm constantly amazed by how quickly kittens learn to use a litter box! Be sure to introduce the box upon arrival into your home and set them into it right after meals and nap time. Positive reinforcement after a successful litter box use can be either a treat or extra TLC from you (or both!). Remember, cats prefer clean litter boxes so make sure you're scooping daily and cleaning the entire box whenever you change the litter.

How long does it take to housebreak a puppy?

Every puppy is unique and on their own schedule. However, you can help your puppy along by consistently recognizing their cues to go outside and using positive reinforcement after a successful potty break!


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