Each week, I’m going to try to post a tip from Cocoa’s trainer at Dog School 101. What I have come to realize is the reason I cannot afford a personal trainer for myself is because Miss Cocoa Joy has one. Of course, I’m teasing. I have a goal when it comes to Cocoa and that is for her to begin to visit people who are hurting and lonely. For her to do this, she had to trained by a professional. But many of the “tricks” of training can be learned easily by people and their pets who just want to enjoy one another and the company of other furry friends.

This week Sandy says: Just as children need to have rules, dogs do also. You don’t have to be the end result of a leash that is being pulled frantically in every direction. A pet can learn to obey simple commands like sit, stay, and come. A good book on training will help but joining a group obedience class is better. Not only will your dog learn how to obey, he or she will also have the opportunity to be socialized with other dogs. “Dogs are pack animals,” says Sandy. “They always want to do what comes naturally and that is to be a member of a pack.”