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It's Not the Size of the Dog in the Fight, but the Size of the Fight in the Dog.

Oct 25, 2023


It's Not the Size of the Dog in the Fight


You may all know the saying, "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog." This old adage isn’t just catchy phrase; it’s a true statement that you can use to motivate yourself when training your dog.


I know, I know, it’s one of those blogs…yawn, it’s worth it for the video of Calaidh and Cookie above.


Let’s have a look at how you can use this saying in your dog training and how your resilience can help you towards success in your training goals.


The Challenges of Dog Training


Dog training is such a rewarding task, but it can be challenging. Whether you're teaching basic obedience commands, working on behavioural issues, or training your dog to learn a specific task, the road to success can be paved with obstacles.


Every dog is unique, each has its own temperament, personality, and learning style. Some dogs may catch on quickly, while others require patience and persistence, from both ends of the lead.


When you’re faced with a challenging training situation, it's easy to let your head go down. It's all too common and very tempting to attribute a dog's behaviour to its breed, age, or size.


However, this is where the saying, "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog," comes in.


Dog Training Determination


Determination is what drives us in everyday life to overcome difficulties, the stubborn belief that progress is possible and gives us the commitment to see it through to the end.


Determination is what separates those who succeed in dog training from those who give up in frustration.


It's not about the size of the dog; it's about the size of your determination to achieve a behavioural change.


The Motivational Link


Regardless of the size or breed of your dog, remember that it's your dedication commitment and perseverance that will make the difference.

Here's some tips on how you can use your determination to your advantage in dog training:


Set Clear Goals

Define what you want to achieve. Whether you're working on basic commands, sports, or behaviour modification, knowing what you want to achieve is essential.


Be Patient

Understand that progress may be slow at times, and setbacks happen. Stay patient and keep the end game in mind.


Stay Consistent

Consistency is key in dog training. Maintain a consistent routine, keep your commands or cues simple, and use reward to help your dog understand what's expected, even if that’s just a ‘good boy (girl)’.


Learn More

Never stop learning, continuously educate yourself about dog behaviour and dog training methods. I learn constantly from the best in the industry, the more you know, the better equipped you'll be to understand how be more effective in your training.


Celebrate Small Wins

Acknowledge and celebrate every small achievement, I mean it, however small, take the win. These moments of success, no matter how minor they may seem, are tiny building blocks toward your larger goals.


Ask for Help

Don't be afraid to reach out to trainers, mentors, or online communities for advice and encouragement, we don’t bite (most of us don’t). You're not alone on this journey, we all want you to succeed.

In the world of dog training, it's not the size, age or breed of the dog that ultimately matters; it's the size of the fight in you. It’s the determination and persistence you bring to the training process in a calm and effective manner.



When faced with these challenges, remember the saying, "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog."

Brush off the failed attempts, take a break if need be and come back to it, but don’t stop.

The only way you’ll 100% fail is if you stop, keep going, you know you’ve got it in you.