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CHAPTER TWO 

 

 

The Right Start  

 

In just a short while, you will be impressed by how much you can accomplish in training your dog to respond to your instructions and behave as you wish, providing you address it properly. Don’t aim to try everything at one time, particularly if there are multiple areas of issues to handle. To properly start your dog training you have to:  

 

 Find out how a dog thinks and feels  

 Have the right equipment and tools  

 Keep training sessions brief and enjoyable  

 Maintain a progress diary  

 Seek out professional help when needed  

 Take up a train brain  

 Reward desirable actions  

 Don’t reward unacceptable behavior  

 By no means lose your temper with your dog  

 

Commands and Rewards  

 

Successful training is based upon a straightforward rule - reward. Typically, canines love to please their owners, and take pleasure in doing so even more when they're rewarded for it. Reward-based training is, as a result, the key to accomplishing a happy and obedient dog. Rewarding every desired behavior for a particular word mixed with an action will stimulate a learned response. Eventually, that response becomes automatic every time you utter the command or exhibit the action.  

 

Food is an all-important facet of canine life, and for that reason food rewards are likely to get the preferred behavior results you're looking for. Food training (teaching your dog to sit, stay and wait before he's given his food and to leave it until he is given permission to eat) signifies an excellent start to achieving obedience in all other areas of behavior.  

 

 

Take up a Train Brain Method 

Remain consistent in your commands and actions. Stick to the same words for commands, for example “lie,” “down,” “sit,” “stay,” “fetch,” and “give.” Changing commands will confound your pet. Stick with them, even when they take time to sink in. Make certain that members of the family also used those commands and actions and follow the code of behavior for the pet you've started.  

 

1. Reward desired behavior with food, a toy or attention, and your doggie will learn fast.  

2. Vocal commands must be encouraging and kept at an even pitch.  

3. Keep commands clear and well spaced out, especially in the beginning, so they won't confuse the dog.  

4. If your dog has learned to disregard a command, and thinks it implies something else - like when you say “heel” and he is walking ahead of you and pulling, therefore he associates “heel” with pulling - then change it out for another word when you start retraining.  

5. Never yell in anger - this really is counterproductive.  

6. Make certain everyone who comes in contract with the pooch follows your rules for him. If you don’t permit him on the furniture, nobody else should either; otherwise you'll find yourself with a bewildered pet.  

 

 

All Dogs Are Unique  

 

Some canines learn things quicker than others. Large breeds have a tendency to mature slower, so you occasionally need to be more patient with them. Small dogs, in contrast, can be too clever for their own good you'll also find to be on your toes. Be aware that working breeds, while smart, have an inbred instinct to run after and retrieve, guard or herd, or all three, and call for disciplined handling and training to obtain the very best from them. Such canines tend to thrive on agility training and training “tasks,” like locating items for you or scent-tracking items. Making training a “game” is the secret to good results in every case.  

 

Just How Long Should Training Sessions Last?

 

Doing too much in a single session will overtax your dog both physically and mentally, and he will wind up completely confused. Try and do one exercise at a time until you and your pooch have mastered it; then start working on the next task. Keep daily training sessions brief and fun: 10 to 15 minutes of focused training each hour is the maximum most dogs can handle. Puppies don’t have a prolonged attention span. 
 

Three 10-minute training sessions each day can beat one 30-minute session. Always conclude on a good note, so that both you and your pet will justifiably feel happy with, and good about, yourselves.

 

Maintain a diary, so that you can observe how progress is going, and make a note of areas of certain achievement or difficulty, so as to work on those exercises that your pet finds harder than others. Most importantly, stay relaxed, have patience and make training enjoyable.  

 

How Long Does It Take to Train a Dog?  

 

There aren't any set deadlines to how long it should take to completely train a dog. The truth is setting cut-off dates can be counterproductive if the owner perceives his dog isn’t progressing as it should. The time it requires to be successful is determined by the aptitude of both owner and dog.
 

Continual training and reinforcement of lessons are what exactly are most reliable. This means, for example, that once you have trained your dog to, say, sit, then repeat the lesson often and reward him suitably so that he doesn’t overlook how to respond correctly to instructions and commands. Reinforcing lessons learned on a regular basis help with keeping you and your pet “sharp,” and helps to ensure that your dog continues to be well mannered.  

 

Reinforcement helps avoid bad habits forming. For instance, if you allow your dog to push past you when you open a door, he'll think it's acceptable for him to do so the next time - and the next. Likewise, if you let your dog jump around enthusiastically anytime he sees you get his leash out ready for walks, and then he will believe that this is appropriate behavior.  

 

A Good Trainer Considerably Helps  

 

Finding a good pro trainer will be very helpful in helping you to turn your dog into a well-mannered and manageable companion. A regular training session will point you in the correct path, as well as be a good deal of fun. Additional on-the-spot insight can’t be beaten with regards to putting into practice what you have learned in writing. Many trainers will even give you and your pet the opportunity to try your paws at various routines like agility, fly ball, scenting work and the ever more popular heel-work to music.  

 

When to Begin Training  

 

Whether your dog is a puppy, an adolescent, or a senior dog, commence training him NOW. There isn't any truth in the saying “Old dogs can’t learn new tricks." Because they do learn, albeit, it takes longer. For a puppy, the perfect time to start training is at seven weeks of age. Your pup is most responsive to training during an 8-week window from 7 to 16 weeks. You'll be surprised by the convenience and pace with which a pup learns. The more you delay, the harder the task will become. Take full advantage of the available time now.  

During this time period your pup is capable of learning way over you'll train him. What the puppy learns now he will remember throughout his life. His brain is the same size as that of an adult dog; he lacks just the experience and locomotors of a grownup dog.  

 

You may be thinking, “I have enough time. I can delay until he’s six months to a year old. Let him enjoy his puppyhood.” While you may have the best of motives, your thoughts is problematic. Why?  

Here are three good reasons:  

 

Your pup will learn many things while he is growing up, with or without your participation. Some of the behaviors he'll probably learn are the very ones you don’t want him to do as a grownup dog; for example, dashing outside, pulling on the leash, not coming when called, and jumping on people. The more ingrained these actions become, the superior the difficulty to fight them.
 

Learning at this stage is probably even more essential than any distinct commands you want to teach your furry pal. Future lessons you want your pet to learn are simpler to teach to a dog that had some training as a pup. Besides, young dogs want to learn, and your pup will look forward to his training sessions.  

Pups are physically simpler to manipulate than grown dogs. Again, you don’t have much time since at seven months of age canines reach about 70 % of their full size.  

 

Utilizing Positive Reinforcement to Train Your Dog  

 

Using positive reinforcement to train your dog means you're rewarding the behaviors you like, and disregarding the behaviors you don't like. You can use treats, praise, or life rewards - playtime, walks, short road trips- to reward your dog's good actions. Dog clicker training is one efficient way of using good reinforcement to train your dog, but it's easy to use rewards with no clicker. There are a lot of rewards to training your dog with positive reinforcement:  

 

Anyone can use positive reinforcement to train their doggie.  

 

Positive reinforcement enables the whole family to get involved in training the dog. For example, it may be harmful to allow your kid to use some methods of dog training, like leash corrections and other sorts of punishment. With positive reinforcement, however, you can hand your kid a number of dog treats. With your guidance, your child can train your dog exactly the same way you do. Positive reinforcement doesn't need you to speak in a strong tone of voice, count on your strength, or put yourself or a member of the family in potential danger. The whole family can get in on the act.  

 

It allows you to communicate plainly with your pet.  

 

Positive reinforcement enables you to communicate clearly with your dog. You choose what you want your dog to do, and tell him what you want by rewarding him when he does it. When you reward your dog for doing things correctly, he's more prone to repeat those good behaviors.  

 

Punishment isn't always so clear.  

 

For example, you can look at a prevalent problem that occurs when dogs are punished for housebreaking accidents. In this case, you catch your dog peeing on your carpet and you reprimand him or resort to the age-old trick of hitting him with a rolled up newspaper. Your intention is to tell your dog that it's not appropriate for him to eliminate inside your house. Rather, dogs often learn that it's not safe to get rid of when you're around. This is a primary reason why you may find that your dog has mishaps when left alone, but never seem to catch him in the act. There's undoubtedly a communication problem here. With positive reinforcement, you can steer clear of this confusion. 

 

Your dog quickly learns that good things happen when he eliminates himself outside, while nothing occurs when he goes indoors. Your pet will soon be eliminating outside in order to reap the benefits. You've managed to clearly communicate with your dog.  

 

Positive reinforcement can be utilized on a wide array of behaviors.  

 

Using training approaches like leash corrections or other forms of punishment isn't effective for each dog. In fact, in some instances, punishment can actually make a behavior problem worse. Aggressive dogs are one example of this. Frequently aggressive dogs become much more aggressive when confronted with punishment. Terrified dogs may also not respond well to even the smallest punishment.  

 

A dog who is frightened of certain people or situations can become even more frightened when punishment is utilized as a training method. Having said that, clicker trainers have documented some great success with using positive reinforcement to train both aggressive and fearful dogs.  

 

The psychological workout can burn off some of your pet's extra energy.  

 

Monotony is a major factor in many of dogs' common behavior problems, like digging and excessive chewing. Training is an excellent way to help keep monotony at bay. You may be amazed at how much energy your dog will shed by just adding a few short, positive training sessions to his day.  

 

It's a lot of fun!  

 

If you keep training sessions short and enjoyable, positive reinforcement training can be pleasurable for you and your dog. Once dogs are aware that training results in lots of good things for them, a lot of dogs start to look at training sessions as playtime. Your dog will soon offer you good behaviors in the hopes of obtaining his rewards, and you're sure to get a smile out of his enthusiasm to learn.  

 

It fortifies the bond between you and your dog.  

 

For many people, their dogs are their family and companions. Positive reinforcement methods of training will help strengthen the bond we have with our dogs. While other training methods may teach your dog how to act, positive reinforcement will help you lead your dog while keeping his trust and building up your relationship.  

 

Your dog is far more likely to take pleasure in your company if he's looking forward to being rewarded rather than dreading punishment. So spending time on positive reinforcement methods of training will certainly strengthen your connection with your dog. 

 

 Chapter Three

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