The training or learning of the dog is based on different techniques that have evolved over time and which take into account the needs of the dog and the learning objectives. The training of the puppy is important because it is often synonymous with safety.
For example, if your dog later escapes during a walk. If you’ve taught him the encore, you won’t have a hard time getting him back to your feet before it’s too late. Of course, there are dogs with behavioral problems. If this is the case with yours, a behaviorist can help you. But before you panic, first, know that dog training is a long-term job. Do not be discouraged!
Some Training Methods
The decoy. With a treat, you guide the dog to achieve the desired behavior. For example, you lift the treat above the nose and towards the dog’s ears to encourage him to sit in a movement that is natural to him.
The clicker. After teaching the dog the meaning of the click, you will guide it by clicking/rewarding each step towards the desired behavior. For example, to teach the dog to go on his cushion, you will click/reward four times: when he looks at his bed, goes to the bed, touches the bed, and finally puts his 4 legs on the bed.
Capturing. You reward the dog for spontaneously adopting the desired behavior. For example, when the dog spontaneously goes to bed, say “down” and give it a treat. After a few exercises, he will understand that going to bed on order will be rewarded.
Imitation. This method is based on social learning. A very precise protocol allows you to teach the dog to imitate the actions of humans. For example, picking up an object, carrying a bag …
During learning (training), the word that you choose to associate with the behavior must be spoken when the dog proposes this behavior and not before since the dog does not yet know it. Once the dog has fully understood the exercise, you will pronounce the chosen word (sitting, lying, in the basket …) to give him the order.
Some Training Tips
The rewards should be dog friendly and highly motivating. To teach the dog a new exercise, choose dry food, industrial treats, fresh food, all low in calories, or a toy that he loves, according to his preferences.
Regardless of the training method chosen, the dog should not be handled or physically constrained. Otherwise, the dog tries to run away from a situation that is unpleasant to him and will not learn to propose the behavior spontaneously. The training must be motivating for the dog to increase its reliability.
Do not say “no” to the dog when it is wrong. This word is often only used when the dog does something stupid. Be kind and patient.
Do not use restrictive or painful training accessories such as choke or electric collars.
Work in short (no more than 15 minutes) and regular (several times a week) learning sessions to see progress, especially if you are training a dog that is still very young.
Do not ask your dog for things that he is not yet able to do as this may demotivate him. Be progressive and patient.
How to train your dog with a collar?
The use of a training collar is relatively simple. But before any use, read the instructions carefully and make tests. Indeed, there is a strong variation between the power of the different stimulations of a dog collar, so be sure of the intensity you will give. It is out of the question to make your dog suffer when a simple warning is enough.
For more advice, we invite you to consult the articles of our blog. Written by amateurs or dog trainers, they will give you the keys to a smooth and successful use. In this same idea, you will notice that we do not offer electric collars. This feature is available on several models, but we don’t like it. Unless there is an emergency, we do not recommend using it since it is very painful for your four-legged animal.
Environmental management during dog training
During your training exercises, you can change your environment so that your dog is less distracted or less likely to engage in prohibited behaviors:
- Put a barrier in front of the bedroom door if you want it to be off-limits.
- Place cardboard boxes or a chair on your couch so the dog does not climb onto it.
- Raise the trash can so that the dog does not access it.
These preventive measures will allow you to be completely focused on the exercises to be taught.
A dog at ease: the key to good training
The good training of the dog is a promise of well-being and serenity, at the same time for you ( the training of the toilet in the puppy must be the first step of the training, for example); and for him. In order to be fully receptive to training, your dog must be in good physical and mental shape. He must be properly fed in relation to his needs. He must drink enough.
You must also respect his essential rest times and adapted to his condition, his age … A puppy for example sleeps a lot, sometimes up to 90% of his time. He will learn quickly, but on the other hand, it is necessary to prepare short training sessions! To be organized preferably before meals, but without starving it. Because using one of your small dog food will be a good way to get his attention during the training session: he must therefore have an appetite, but without getting impatient.
Your dog needs to be entertained, so spend time with him to play, to go out, to make him meet other dogs …
Make him play sports, he also needs to release his energy!
In conclusion, take care of the complete development of your dog, his training will be even more effective.