Basics of Dog Training
It’s essential for dog owners to know some basic factors that determine your relationship with your dog. This can go a long way in training him effectively.
Before you begin training your dog, it is absolutely essential that you build a loving bond with him. This is important, as it helps you understand his or hers needs and instincts and also allows your dog to have complete trust in you.
Let us see how…….
How To Bond With Your Dog
Building a bond with your dog is the first and the most crucial step involved in training him successfully. As soon as you bring your dog home, you must first try to develop a caring and loving relationship with him in order to win his trust and confidence. At the end of the day, you want him to be your best friend. Or in our case, my best spoilt friend ha ha.
When dogs are secure in the knowledge that they belong to the family, they are more likely to respond better to their owners’ training commands. Just like with any relationship, there must be mutual trust and respect between you and your dog.
Trust takes time to develop, and respect comes from defining boundaries and treating any breach of those boundaries with firmness and fairness.
Our Hudson was rescued from a shelter and it took him 3 months to come anywhere near me. I hate to think what kind of life he had before he came to us. Needless to say he is my best friend now. He is also obedient and there is a mutual trust and respect between us.
4 Ways To Build A Relationship With Your Dog :
- Spend quality time together;
- Take him out in the world and experience life together;
- Establish and promote a level of mutual respect; and
- Develop a way of communicating to understand each other’s needs.
Building a bond with your dog will not only help you manage him better, but will also make your dog calm, quiet and an extremely well-adjusted friend.
Love Your Dog and He Will Love You back
Once you’re successful in building a bond with your dog, you can be rest assured that training him and teaching him new tricks will be easy. Remember, they like fun as much as we do. If they are happy with us, they are going to be far more proactive during training sessions.
How Your Dog Learns…
Your dog’s learning period can be divided into five phases:
The Teaching Phase – This is the phase where you must physically demonstrate to your dog exactly what you want him to do.
The Practicing Phase – Practice makes Perfect. Once a lesson is learnt, practice with your dog what you have just taught him.
The Generalising Phase – Here you must continue practicing with your dog in different locations and in an environment with a few distractions. You can take your dog out for a walk, or to a nearby park and command him to practice whatever you’ve taught him.
Practicing the learned lessons in multiple locations and in the presence of small distractions will help him learn and retain lessons better .
The Testing Phase – Once you’re sure that your dog has achieved almost 90% success….he responds correctly almost every time you give a command, you must start testing his accuracy in newer locations with a lot of distractions.
Example: Take him to the local shopping centre and ask him to obey your command. He may not come up with the correct response the very first time you do this, but you must not lose hope.
The idea is to test your dog to see how he responds in an environment which is new to him. Set-up a situation where you are in control of the environment and your dog.
There are only 2 possibilities:
- Your dog succeeds!!! Hooray !!!!!!
- In case your dog fails, re-examine the situation. Review and/or change your training. Then try testing again.
Keep on testing until he succeeds. Follow the rule of the 3 P’s – patience, persistence, praise.
Internalising Phase – Finally, comes the extremely rewarding phase where your dog does everything he is taught to do even without your commands.
- Never tell off your dog if he fails. It’s not his fault. You have failed as a trainer!
- You must be patient and persistent for your efforts to show rewards.
- Appreciate and love your dog when he does it right! A little encouragement will work wonders for your dog.
- Dog Training is easy when you do it right.
It is extremely important to build a bond and friendship with your dog. You must both have a mutual respect for each other and if your dog is trained it will enhance your friendship and all aspects of your life together.
If you have any comments or feedback please feel free to drop me a line.