Basic training is a foster family’s responsibility. Training promotes foster dog confidence, and sets them up for a successful adoption. The following are training tips as recommended by Dog Bless.

The first step to housetraining is patience. Even housebroken dogs have accidents while adjusting to a new environment.
Designate a “potty” area in your yard. For disease prevention, this should be an area beyond your pet’s potty area. Take the foster out to potty frequently: First thing in the morning, after eating, and before leaving for any period of time. Praise and reward your foster dog when she potties outside. Never punish your foster dog for having an accident indoors. Use 50/50 water to vinegar solution to clean up accidents. This mixture will remove the urine odor and prevent the dog from returning to that area.

Crate Training
Crate training is an imperative skill all dogs must learn. By crating, you keep your foster dog (and your home) safe from harm while you are away. To introduce your foster dog to its crate, place the crate in a neutral area and leave the door open. Begin creating positive associations with the crate: Always crate feed, and give special toys/treats while in the crate.


  • Arm yourself with treats
  • Hold treats over your foster dog’s nose
  • Say “sit” firmly
  • Position your hand so the treat is directly over the dog’s nose just out of reach. Your foster dog will have to sit to reach it.
  • Praise your foster dog for sitting, and repeat!

While your foster dog is in the sitting position, say the word “stay” and slowly back away. If she starts to move toward you, return, make her sit, and move away again saying “stay” firmly. Treat and praise when she stays. Repeat, gradually increasing the distance between you.

Leash Training
Many of Dog Bless’ rescued dogs are destined for big cities in the northeast. Leash training is imperative to your foster dog’s transition into city life, and a skill all dogs, no matter their location, should master.

  • Attach a leash to your foster dog’s no-slip collar. Allow the dog to become familiar with the leash by dragging it around the house.
  • When walking, keep the leash close to you and remove any slack
  • If your foster dog tries to pull you, stand in front of them so that they cannot go around you
  • Praise and reward your foster dog when they stay by your side
  • Repeat

Mailing Address:
PO Box 11191
Charleston, WV 25339

Mailing Address:
PO Box 11191
Charleston, WV 25339

Dog Bless is a rescue advocacy group in Charleston, WV. We are a 501c3 exempt organization. We are a group of friends that love dogs.