Al's Dog Training Tips

Lazy Saturday Afternoon Syndrome

The topic today is Lazy Saturday Afternoon syndrome. So if you work a nine-to-five job Monday through Friday, you pretty much get weekends off. Not always, but most of the time, you’re getting those weekends off. And so, what could that day possibly look like?

Well, you wake up in the morning; maybe you have a little bit of a late brunch. You might piddle around your house for a little bit and play with your dog some. Maybe you decide around one o’clock that you’ll have a Margarita. Then maybe you get into a college football game. But right before the game, your cell phone rings, and it’s your boss, and he says you need to get into work because we got something that we need you to come and do.

So now my question to you, if that’s ever happened, how good was your performance when you showed up to work Saturday afternoon after you had a Margarita and you were about to watch a college football game? My guess is it wasn’t the best that you’ve ever done.

Now, like everybody obviously goes through those kinds of things. Even as a dog trainer or some days that, it’s just not always easy to perform at the highest possible levels. But I always try to deliver a consistent, good experience and really for my clients and their dogs.

So why am I talking about Lazy Saturday Afternoon syndrome? Well, it’s a made-up syndrome. But it is something that I do run into every once in a while with my clients. And here’s really what I’m trying to say.

Many dogs get a lot of freedom because they don’t actually do too many bad things during the day. They’re just pretty easy to live with. But then, all of a sudden, you enter into a training program with a trainer like myself. And then what you want to do is all of a sudden say, hey, I need to teach my dog something. So you grab your treat pouch. You find your dog, who’s maybe taking a nap, and then you want to start training.

And what I got to tell you is that when you follow that kind of structure on a day-to-day basis and train your dog that way, you’re not going to get your dog’s A-game. You’re not going to get the best performance that they can give you.

Now let me give you an example out of my life, which I think is it’s working so incredibly well for me right now. So right now, here’s kind of what the beginning of my day looks like. I wake up, and the first thing that I do is take out Alpha to use the restroom. She does her business. I put her back in a crate, and then I grab Jerico. I take him out to use the restroom. He does his business. I put him back into a crate. And then, at that moment, Gabby, my oldest dog, my six-year-old German Shepherd, knows that it is time for me to take her to the backyard and began to play with her. And so then I play with her for 10-15 minutes.

That play actually is training. After those 15 minutes, I come back in, grab Alpha, and train anywhere from 10-20 minutes. And then the next thing that happens is I grab Jerico, and I do the same thing. That takes me about an hour, maybe a few minutes more, for all three of my dogs.

But I got to tell you when I wake up in the morning; all three dogs eagerly look forward to that moment. And you know what that does to the training. It just makes it work so very well. It’s the antithesis of lazy Saturday afternoon syndrome because the dogs are so looking forward to that moment that they’re going to get to train with me.

Now, look, I’m not saying not to give your dog time off and not to give yourself time off, but you do want to create some structure and some kind of rhythm to your training to where your dog can really look forward to it eagerly and really anticipate the training because this way you will make it a very, a joyful occasion for them and they will remember their lessons better.

I hope these tips are making you and your dog’s relationship even better. Remember, you can always go to my YouTube Channel for more tips like this and find more right here on

Happy Training!

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