Training Your Lab
Rescue Labs, while typically kind, loving, and eager to please, usually have not had the benefit of much training or socialization. Our adopting families are special because they understand these needs and offer a rescue Lab the chance to become a fine family member. Training is an investment in this future together and helps develop a bond between you and your Lab.
Consistent, structured training is a must if you want a Lab who is a joy to have as a family member. The best way to teach you and your Lab necessary skills is to take a class with a reputable instructor. Even the most seasoned Lab owners go to training classes when they acquire a new Lab because they know the guidance, support, and socialization (to other dogs and people) in class is an investment that pays high dividends.
To find a reputable trainer, ask for recommendations from your vet’s office or fellow dog owners. The Association of Professional Dog Trainers can also provide a list of trainers in your area. Do some research before hiring a trainer; conduct interviews and ask to visit a class (without your Lab) to observe the instructor’s teaching style.
Playing and Working with Your Lab
Labs are terrific companions. You can participate in many activities with your Lab besides just sharing your day-to-day life (not that there’s anything wrong with that!). Dog training centers offer a variety of classes beyond learning basic commands like “sit,” “down,” “stay,” and “heel.” When you have the basics down, try activities like hiking, agility training, field trials, or therapy work.