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Burns Pet Nutrition is on a mission to get all dogs trained in UK homes by the end of 2021.

Did you know that as a nation we’ve brought home over 3 million* new dogs in the last year? With the average person falling back in love with waggy tails and wet noses, there has been a huge increase in the number of people opening their homes to a new furry family member. Unfortunately, there have also been huge numbers of people giving up their dogs to rescue centres and shelters throughout the UK.

Lassie Don’t Come Home

Rescue centres are already seeing a huge number of dogs left at their doorsteps, and there are a lot more expected. As people begin to send their dogs packing before returning to work after a long lockdown, it’s expected that almost a quarter** of new dogs are going to be sent packing before the end of the year.

What’s Up With That?

There are loads of little reasons that dogs have been increasingly given up for adoption, but when we look closely, there is only one single issue that sticks out above all others as a contributing factor for Britain’s Great Big Dog Return, and that’s training! Training is the single biggest reason we’re seeing more and more dogs in shelters. Independent research highlighted the most common struggles to train your dogs are:

  1. Recall
  2. Walk on a lead
  3. Stay
  4. To not bite
  5. To not go to the toilet in the house

What are Burns going to do about it?

If they’re pulling on the lead, not coming back when you call them or doing their business on your brand new living room carpet, it’s probably because they haven’t been trained. Burns wants to change the story for these dogs by training as many of them as possible before the year is out!

BARK to School!

Burns has been busy creating a special training program for furry family members new and old. With the help of experts, we’ve put together a series of videos and informational content designed to get turn your ruff boy or girl into a model canine citizen.

Keep scrolling for our training videos and top tips on how to train your dog from Orlagh McCarthy CBTT, Senior Dog Trainer with the John Burns Foundation:


  1. Always start training in a calm environment without distractions before using your dog’s new training skills out in public. This can be a garden or space inside your home.
  2. Use clear, short and easy command words such as ‘Come’ ‘Yes’ and ‘Stay’ when training your dog.
  3. While your pet is learning a new command, reward generously. Practice daily; the more time you spend training the easier and quicker it will pick up the skills.
  4. Change the training environment regularly and start the training process at the beginning every time you change the environment to allow the dog to adapt.
  5. Always use a positive reinforcement training method with your pet; by rewarding your pet with a treat or praise for the wanted behaviours and ignoring the unwanted behaviours.
  6. Have patience and take your time with your pet when training new commands.
  7. When training your dog, ensure all their attention and focus is on you. If your dog is tuned out, acknowledge it, finish up with something they already know, reward and leave training for another time.
  8. Having a dog that responds to their name is key in the overall training programme.
  9. Spend up to 15 minutes per day for optimal training success.
  10. A successfully trained dog is important for keeping your pet safe when out and about.
**Independent Research