Top 5 Dog Expert Training Strategies
Proper dog training takes careful time and attention. We asked experts the top questions to ask yourself during your training sessions to evaluate your training success and progress. How do you make sure your dog training is effective? Try answering these questions and see!
1. Safety: Is your dog training method safe for your dog’s age?
In some cases, dog training methods can increase aggression – if done in a harmful, unsafe, or punishing way. To protect yourself and your relationship with your dog, focus on safe, simple, and effective training that is not harmful to the dog. If the dog is a puppy, some forms of training can be stressful. In this case you may have to wait until the dog is six months old or older.
2. Relationship: Will your approach build your relationship?
If applied in a novice way, some training methods may induce fear for dogs; especially those that are more sensitive. The better the relationship between the dog and their owner, the better the dog’s training will go. Safe and humane training builds your relationship with your dog and positively reinforces good behavior.
3. Timing: Do you pause before repeating a command?
If you are prone to repeating a command almost immediately after first calling it, try to offer your dog a bit more patience. Say a command, and wait at least 30 seconds to repeat it. If the dog does not come on the first command, the dog will surely come on the second command. Repeating the same command over and over can teach your dog to interpret the command differently. Instead of expecting to hear a command once, the dog will begin to expect to hear the command multiple times before acting on it.
4. Rewards: Do you reward your dog when they obey?
Aggressive training is already a path to avoid, but commanding your dog to “come” then rewarding them with a punishment is a surefire way to destroy trust and teach your dog that when they follow your command, a negative experience is to follow; Instead, offer your dog a tasty treat! Whether that negative experience is a nail trim, a bath, or getting their ears cleaned, offer some time beforehand to give the dog a big hug or a pat on the head as a reward for following your command.
5. Variety: Do you change commands that don’t work?
In the case that your dog isn’t listening to your command you can try to switch up the verbal cue you are using so that your dog can begin to start fresh with the command. This can be a simple switch from “come” to “come here” – the changes don’t have to be drastic. In this case, you can try a new training method to see if the training sticks better for the dog.
Are you teaching your dog the right commands? Explore the commands all dogs should know!