Teaching Your Dogs to Release on Their Names: A Valuable Skill for Multi-Dog Households

November 6, 2023

When you have multiple dogs, teaching your dogs to release on their names can be very helpful. Maintaining order and teaching your furry companions valuable skills can make your life significantly less chaotic. Teaching a release on their names will make your life much easier, especially regarding mealtimes, going outside, or managing FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). In this blog, we’ll teach your dogs to release on their name, making daily routines smoother and more manageable.


The Benefits of Teaching Release on Their Name


Training your dogs to release on their name can help create a sense of order and minimize the frenzy often occurring when multiple dogs are vying for your attention or resources. Here are a few situations where this skill can be beneficial:

  • Mealtime: Releasing your dogs one at a time to their food bowls can prevent mealtime chaos and reduce the risk of food-guarding or resource-guarding behaviors.
  • Going Outside: Releasing your dogs individually to go outside can prevent a stampede at the door and ensure each dog gets their turn for bathroom breaks or playtime.
  • FOMO Management: If you have a dog prone to FOMO, teaching them to release off a station on their name can help them stay calm and patient when not directly involved in an activity.

How to Teach Your Dogs to Release on Their Name


  • Individual Training: Start by working with each dog separately. Ask your dog to sit, say their name, and encourage them to come to you. Reward them for responding to their name and coming to you. If they hesitate, offer gentle encouragement. Consistent rewards will help your dog understand the concept.
  • Pairing Dogs: Once each dog can release separately, practice with two dogs together. If you have a station behavior, use it for added control. Put both dogs on stations, say the name of the dog you want to release, and reward them for coming to you. Afterward, reward the dog that remained stationed to reinforce their patience. If you want to learn more about how to train stations, check out this blog!
  • Apply to Daily Routines: Incorporate this skill into your daily routines, such as feeding time and going outside. For meals, place both food bowls down, then release one dog at a time by using their name. If necessary, hold the food bowls initially to prevent any unwanted chaos. During bathroom breaks, release each dog individually to avoid a door-rushing frenzy.
  • Reinforce FOMO Management: For dogs with FOMO, using this release can help them remain calm and patient when they are not directly involved. Practice this skill regularly to reinforce their understanding.



Teaching your dogs to release on their names is a valuable skill that can significantly improve the harmony and order in a multi-dog household. It’s an essential tool for managing mealtime, outdoor excursions, and even mitigating FOMO-related anxieties. If your dog suffers from FOMO, check out the online workshop I’m doing through FDSA: NOMO FOMO: Teaching Your Dog to Patiently Wait Their Turn.  The workshop starts on Sunday and will be available for registration through the end of November.


With patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement, your dogs will quickly learn to respond to their names and enjoy a more peaceful and structured environment. So, start practicing this skill today and watch your multi-dog household become a well-coordinated and happy family.

Does the thought of teaching heeling seem overwhelming?

If teaching heeling is on your to-do list and you want a simple solid plan, this class is for you!  We’ll start on the bowl and cover everything from getting off the bowl to moving forward, executing turns, pace changes, and more!

We’ll also go over some fun games to keep heeling fresh and fun!

Join me to get off the bowl and moving forward!

Registration opens on May 22nd.  The 6-week class will start on June 1st!


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