Hardest Dogs to Train

A Jack Russell baby. Image via @let_puppies on X

Thinking of getting a dog? Avoid these five hardest dogs to train

Discover the five hardest dogs to train, according to experts, and learn pro tips to successfully train your furry friend.

Hardest Dogs to Train

A Jack Russell baby. Image via @let_puppies on X

Training a dog can be a rewarding experience, but some breeds are notoriously difficult to train. According to dog behaviour experts, certain breeds require more patience and consistency than others.

Traci Madson, a certified dog expert and trainer with Pupford, says that “some dogs do take longer to train” and that “genetics and learning history really come into play here.”

Celebrity dog trainer Chrissy Joy notes that beagles, one of the hardest dogs to train, “can be a challenge training in distracting outdoor environments and off leash recalls.” However, she adds that their food-driven nature can be leveraged in the training process.

Hardest Dogs to Train: Huskies and Malamutes

Siberian huskies and malamutes, both bred for cold weather, are known for their independence and strong sense of identity.

Bradley Phifer, executive director of the Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers, says that “huskies are notoriously independent and wilful, making them resistant to training methods that other breeds may respond well to.”

Madson notes that malamutes “aren’t very motivated by food, toys or pleasing their owners” and have a high prey drive.

She recommends providing these breeds with enrichment activities that cater to their original purpose, such as pulling sleds or playing with a flirt pole.

Jack Russell Terriers: High Energy and Prey Drive

Jack Russell terriers, originally bred for fox hunting, have a high prey drive and require lots of exercise. Joy emphasises the importance of research when considering this breed, as “they love to learn and play games but can get bored, which could lead to destructive behaviour.”

Providing mental stimulation through obedience training, tricks, and brain games is crucial for keeping Jack Russell terriers engaged and well-behaved.

Doodles: Not as Easy as They Seem

Despite their popularity, doodle varieties like goldendoodles and bernedoodles are not as easy to train as many believe. Madson attributes this to overbreeding, which has “contributed to them being more anxious and fearful than other breeds.”

She advises starting young with positive socialisation and training, as well as providing mental exercise through enrichment and problem-solving activities.

Bloodhounds: Stubborn but Rewarding

Bloodhounds, known for their exceptional sense of smell, are often used by law enforcement to locate missing persons. However, Phifer notes that “their instincts and self-reliance can pose a challenge during training” and that they are “stubborn and easily sidetracked.”

Despite being one of the hardest dogs to train, bloodhounds can become loyal and affectionate companions with persistence, patience, and positive reinforcement.

While these breeds may be more challenging to train than others, it’s important to remember that every dog is unique. With the right approach, consistency, and patience, even the hardest dogs to train can become well-behaved and loving companions.