I have a lab and I heard to stop when they are having fun so he will look forward to it, but I like so have 10-20 minute sessions, not 5 minute sessions.
PS he is a male and is almost 3 years old and I train him for obedience.


  1. todavia

    You don’t HAVE to, but it makes it easier in the long run. If your dog associates doing tricks/obedience with fun, you won’t have to battle him so much to get him to do it.
    If you end a training session on a fun note, or with a high value treat (one he doesn’t get that often), he will build an association between yum and fun and sit/stay/down or whatever you’re teaching him. Later, when you’re not in a training session but really need him to do a trick, he’ll hear you say the command and think “YUM!” and do it right away.
    Even if you do one 20-30 minute session once a day, that association will still be built for your dog. It will build faster if you do a few short sessions a day, but one long one will still create the same feeling for your dog.
    It’s not so much as to ensure your dog is having a good time, but to ensure he WANTS to obey you by thinking that he gets a reward for obeying you.
    And remember, fun doesn’t have to be a fun trick or something. It can be you petting and talking in a high happy voice and congratulating him on a job well done, or a high value treat, or a game that he particularly likes. It doesn’t have to be one particular type of ‘fun’.
    Good luck!

  2. timothy t

    there is no set time,it varys from dog to dog as a lab breeder and trainer i usually spend fifteen to twenty minutes,i agree with others its always important to end on a good note.the reason to limit training time is so that niether you nor the dog gets frustrated but as long as things are going well there is absalute time limit. i hunt my dogs all day long and have never seen them get sick of it.

  3. Katherine P

    Depends…. there are different schools of thought on this.
    Personally, I feel it’s not necessarily as important to end it when he’s having “fun” as it is to end it on a positive note. So if you’ve been training for an hour and for the last 10 minutes he’s having trouble mastering the “sit/stay”, then end the class with a lenghty “heel”, praise him and call it a day.
    Some people crate their dogs for 30 minutes prior to training so the dog see’s the training as a positive “release” and bonding time with you.
    Some people keep their dogs with them on lead the entire time they are home so they can work on various training items throughout the day.
    All of these work to various degree’s depending on the specific dog and person…it’s just a matter of figuring out which one (or combination) of these work best for you and your dog.

  4. Nancy M

    He and you should be always having fun but you stop a training session on a positive note — a successful exercise. If you stop on a failure then that is what he will take away with him, as will you. He should look forward to training and so should you. If you have been working on a recall and he is simply marginally getting it – but he does heel/sits good, then after doing the recalls – if he isn’t likely to finish successfully with a perfectly wonderful recall, then finish with the recalls without draggin it out to the point of being sickening, and do a couple of heel/sits that you can praise/reward him well for so that he comes away from each and every training session (you too) on a good note — wanting to come back and do it again later instead of dreading it… He should always be trained in a happy, excited manner that shows he enjoys what he is doing — your attitude brings a lot of this to the game as well so you need to be upbeat and excited about how wonderfully he is doing and what a great team y’all make. It is better to simply stop the drudgery and do a couple of good things – five minute session are usually not productive anyway — ten to fifteen is what I usually do and if I am seeing the dog fumble at five or so minutes, I select something great he does and do that and then end the session. If he acts like he isn’t having fun, then it is your ‘fault’ – he will only give back what you put in and you need to be smiling at him and upbeat and know that he is and will be the greatest dog on Earth!

  5. animal_a

    Its always best to set up training so that you end on a positive note.
    When I’m training my Samoyeds and need to train repetitively I do 2 minute sessions!

  6. tom l

    You can easly stretch a session out some by simply changing what you are working on. But yes, you want to stop on a positive and with the dog still wanting more. Labs tend to often view O/B as boring so add in stuff that will make the dog think, I normally use push-pull drills for that. Throw some retrieves and work on having the dog front and finish when it returns. There are a lot of game type things that can be added in to extend the training session.

  7. WP Robot Wordpress Autoposter

    I would think as long as you are consistent with his sessions and his attention span lasts for the time you want to work him, play time comes when he has accomplished his tasks. Obviously don’t overdo and make the sessions too grueling but I don’t think a time limit is set in stone for any amount of training. Do what works for you and your dog to obtain the desired results.
    Good luck

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