Dog training is an area that people approach very differently. Some people may be confident trainers, whose dogs appear regularly in shows, while others might be new pet owners, struggling with a dog that is showing the effects of his troubled past. However, there are some key ideas everyone can benefit from. You can use the following tips to learn a few things that may help both you and your dog to have more fun and to build a closer bond.
1. Reward your dog for obeying you. Rewards like treats and excessive praise can be useful tools when training your dog. Just be careful that you do not condition them to expect this every time they do as they are told. Reward them for following instruction, but do so randomly.
2. Dogs learn through reinforcement. When your dog does something you approve of and you would like to train them to do that on command, reward them with your voice. Consider, for example, the dog that unpredictably brings his owner his slippers. The owner should excitedly say the word "slippers" or whatever word they chose as a command for that behavior.
3. Dogs often become destructive because they are bored and lonely. Consider a house dog that destroys the sofa while you are away from the house. Consider the larger outside dog that chews up the shrubbery. The answer to alleviating their destructive behavior might be as simple as spending more time with them or buying them a new toy.
4. Make sure to get everyone involved in training. If you are the only member of the family working with Fido's behavior, then the other members of the family might be giving him mixed signals. Consistency is extremely important in dog training. Also make sure that everyone is using the same key words and rewards so that the behavior will be reinforced correctly. Off and down are two different things to a dog, so make sure you aren't confusing him.
Whatever your skill level and the behavior of your dog, education is key to good dog training. Understanding dog psychology, particularly what influences and motivates dogs and the impact your behavior, body language and 'body tells' can have on that is vital. Please call us if you want to discuss training for your dog whether he is new to the family or there are issues you’ve been wanting to correct for a while, we can help.