Simple Guidelines For Training Your Pooch at Home
If you have not already done so, consider enrolling your dog into a professional obedience class. An experienced trainer can have an enormous influence on your canine’s willingness to adopt acceptable behaviors. That includes following your commands, socializing with other pets, and remaining friendly when exposed to people (including strangers).
In addition to outside classes, you should also invest the time to train your pooch at home. Here are a few simple guidelines to help you and your four-legged friend make the most of the time you spend together.
Avoid Negative Reactions
When your dog fails to respond properly to your commands, avoid yelling or being physically abusive to him. A lot of owners mistakenly believe that doing those things will elicit the response they want. In reality, yelling, pushing, yanking of the chain, and other negative reactions are more likely to cultivate fear in your pooch. If he responds properly, give him a treat. If he fails to respond, withhold the treat. That’s punishment enough and keeps the training session positive.
Use The Right Dog Treats
Some treats work better than others; it’s important to use the right food items. Not only will your canine prefer certain goodies (for example, cheese over candy), but some foods can distract him. For example, many owners use dog biscuits. The problem is, the biscuits crumble and litter the floor. Your pooch cannot ignore the little bits and pieces, so he’ll be distracted collecting them.
Also, try to use goodies that are relatively small. That will help ensure your dog consumes them quickly and remains motivated.
Keep The Sessions Short
Even though your canine will love the attention you’re giving him, he’ll lose interest if the training sessions are long. Limit them to ten minutes or less. The key is to conduct them on a regular basis. That way, you’ll keep his interest and motivation high.
Test His Ability To Stay
Training your pooch to “sit” and “stay” are basic commands. Unfortunately, dogs are seldom predisposed to staying still for long periods. They’re intensely curious and want to explore anything that catches their attention. You’ll need to work in stages.
Start by encouraging your canine to sit for 30 seconds while you remain a few feet away. Once he is able to do so several times in a row, increase the time he’s required to sit and the distance that separates you. For longer periods, provide a treat while your dog is sitting and tell him, “stay” as you provide it. Also, establish a command that signals the end of the session (for example, “come”).
Training your canine at home is an opportunity for you to spend time with him while encouraging the behaviors he has learned in obedience classes. While it requires a little time, effort, and diligence, the investment yields dividends that last a lifetime.