Ultimate Guide For Small Dog Training Tips

Train the same way

Stop Dog Barking

The one tip I think everybody should know is that you should train your dog the same way whether they are a large or small breed. Most of the population will think that small dogs should get concessions because of their little size.

These concessions come in the form of no corrections and no exercise. Whether a dog is big or little they need both. Failure to do so will result in a little dog doing what big dogs do when they lack an outlet. They will start forming behavior problems.

Some will eventually start to biting and nipping house guest and visiting family members. Make sure you are taking the time to train your dog. Regardless of size they’re still an animal and still require a lot of structure and exercise.

Lots of exercise

Exercise your little dog twice a day without fail if you haven’t done any at this point. Exercise is the most important part of small dog training. Two to three years of no exercise can really do a number on your dog. Physiologically the dog will have a better life mentally if they are exercised.

The dog should get out for runs as well. This is one of the few areas I think you need to make a small adjustment. Run your dog but realize that they are small, and you should run them slower because to them it is fast. Running with bigger dogs may make you insensitive to this tiny little need they have.

Walk them as much as you can outside and get them 45 minutes to an hour. Leash behind the ears and with the leash short. Don’t hesitate to use the same tactics you would use with a pit-bull or rottweiler. In addition, correct to the inside and don’t be shy about using to the stop, turn, and turn around method.

Treadmill is another great and useful resource you should have at your disposal. Put the little guy or girl on the treadmill and let them exercise themselves after a walk or after a run. Remember, you want to provide an outlet and let them adapt to being sleep and relaxing inside of the walls of our home.

Lastly, combine all of these and mix them up. There is no reason to have a dog if you skip this step. Exercising is the best thing you can do for a little dog and it improves the dog’s life and the household that is hosting him.

Eating for small breeds

Small dogs eat in a way that is like snacking. They will take a couple out of the bowl, put it on the floor, and eat it slowly. People get to the point where they think the dog isn’t eating and sometimes this will happen often with small dog owners.

The truth is that if you want to increase the appetite of any dog start putting them to work. The more the dog is exerting itself the more it will need food and water for recovery. Try looking at where the exercise regiment is in relation to the lack of eating.

Majority of the time there is a direct connection between the two and increasing one results in the increase of the other. When small dog training is done right you should never have an appetite problem.

Same leashes and tools

You should use a slip lead just a tiny one for a smaller breed. The small tools just use a smaller version of it to fit the little one. House dogs do enjoy more gifts from owners such as outfits and shoes. Do as you please just make sure when you walk you have the right goals in mind.

You are walking them so that at some point you can go off leash and supervise without a physical barrier. Long as you can accomplish this you should be fine. That is impossible to do if you are standing behind the dog on the walk because you are giving little direction.

Whenever you are leading and giving direction you are in the position to really change the relationship between who is the follower and taking direction from who.

Dog Park

There are two areas in the dog park. The big dog section and the little dog area. The general area will be large and the area for the little dogs will be a fourth of that size. Keep your dog out of the big dog area and around dogs that are its own size.

When you take your dog to the park there should be a pre-workout dog park plan. Here’s what we like to do: Take them on a run and a walk on the treadmill right after. Once we get to the dog park take a walk around the block. Socializing during small dog training is important but only after exhaustion for the best results.

That walk may be for 20 minutes but if the dog is losing its mind just because they hear dogs, I will personally take them for an hour walk. Doing this consistently on the weekends will make the dog enter the dog park slowly.

Over time the dog will resist acting in a way that is abnormal to the other dogs in the park and conduct himself much better over a short period of time.

Teaching small dogs commands

Teach your dog all the basic commands. They will take a few days to completely catch on just like the bigger breeds. Consistency is the key to making this an easy exchange. Make sure you check out Top Ten Commands to Teach Your Dog.

Small dog training is going to enhance when the dog has a strong recall. Strong command of the dog will improve the relationship, leadership position, and control over the dog.

Small Dog House training

House training is something that you should be taken seriously. The Ultimate Guide To Training a Puppy will give you action packed steps to follow. When house training you want establish your rules as the dog owner in various areas.

The areas you need a strong understanding of are

  1. Doors
  2. Places to sleep
  3. Couches

When you come to doors just make your dog sit. That’s all you should do and have them relax until you open the door and invite them out.

Next, designate where they will sleep at first. As the dog gets older you will let them dictate where they want to sleep but you want to give a new adult dog or puppy direction at first.

House breaking Small Dog Training

Take them out multiple times per day. 4 to 5 times a day. Potty training 101 covers all the basics you need to know for potty training in a detailed article. For a smaller breakdown you want to follow certain ques that are mandatory.

When they wake up, eat, drink water, and anytime they’re playing around.

The next obvious signs are when the dog is sniffing inside of the house and leaving the room when they would usual stay with the family.

Puppy Pads

You want to use the same principles as the housebreaking but instead of taking them outside. You want to take them to the puppy pad and create a habit of finding the pad when they need to use the bathroom.

The puppy pads are good for owners that are gone for longer periods of time during the week while working. Coming home to filled up puppy pads are much easier to manage than to look around the house and possible find something on the bottom of your shoes or even worst your socks.

You don’t have to train on a pad or use them at all. They can be a helper with small dog training so keep them in mind. 

Training Small Dog Not to Bark

Dog barking can be a symptom of a bigger issue. How to stop dog barking will direct you on the steps you need to take to address this issue.

Make sure you are exercising and correcting the dog properly and you shouldn’t have too many problems with controlling the activity.

Start training sessions and having someone knock on the door after a long workout will assist in lowering the intensity of the dog allowing you effectively take control.

Small Toys and Treats

You should get some toys and treats that fit the small size of your dog. A large breed size treat will only make the little stomach very full and it can disrupt their normal eating schedule.

Toys such as small balls to fetch will be better if you have a small dog that exhibits prey drive. Take the time to find something they can fit in their mouth and try to teach them to fetch.

That activity should never be looked at as some replacement for exercise. You have exercise and throwing a ball is play time. There is a clear difference.

Grooming for Long hair Little Dogs

If you want a little dog with long hair you must understand what you are getting in return. The dog is going to need to be groomed often in comparison to a short hair dog. They need constant haircuts. Make sure you are aware of the cost and frequency and able to afford that kind of grooming.

During the hot summer months, you will have to deal with shedding, and it can become a mess unless you are grooming them reducing the houses exposure to the regular seasonal reaction.

Grooming for Short hair Little Dogs

Just because a dog has short hair doesn’t mean you need to groom them less, but the great part is that you can groom them from home often. Make sure you are bathing your dogs at least once per week but twice if possible.

The better hygiene you keep with your dog the better it will be for the household.

Picking the Right Small Dog for You

Ultimately you want to pick a dog that will fit the house. Pick a similar energy level from you and what you are willing to do. Picking a higher energy dog and you are someone who runs 100 miles per month can be a great fit.

Picking those dogs while never taking them out will be a recipe for disaster. Be aware of what you are willing to commit to the relationship and what the dog requires. Don’t get an energetic puppy get the lazy one.

Follow that advice and thank me later. The person who gave me that advice I thank them often.

Traveling with small dogs

Use a traveling crate or no crate at all. That means very little what you do before you leave is more important to the overall experience of the travel.

The day before I would take the time to make sure the dog is tired from a morning and afternoon session. The following morning, I would take them out one more time to make sure the dog will relax during the drive.

Long as you take care of business on the front end you should have no issue with the car ride or visitation process because you took care of your dog before you traveled in the vehicle or airplane.

Some dogs have motion sickness and may not be able to travel due to feeling nauseated and throwing up a bowl size of dog food inside the car.


A small dog should be offered very little concessions in relation to their counterpart. Remember that a dog is a dog regardless of size will help you in providing them with the type of life they deserve to live.

Exercise the little ones a lot and don’t worry about them being little and needing less exercise. The only dog that needs less exercise is a senior dog. Small dogs that are young around one or two will need the most exercise of their life.

A smaller toy and treat size will be proper to accommodate.

The important thing to remember is to not go overboard with the way you approach your little family addition. Exercise, train, and set rules around the house and you will have the best little dog you could have ever imagined.

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