Many dog owners erroneously assume that their dogs will benefit from a flexible environment free of rules. Nothing could be further from the truth. All dogs should have fun, but with the guidance and encouragement of their owners. A regular training routine can help build a proper relationship between you and your dog. Your dog’s anxiety can be replaced with confidence with just a little work! This article has tips to build a solid training routine for your pet.
Dogs should continue to be trained throughout their lives. Many owners think that once a dog is trained, he’s trained forever. This simply isn’t true. Daily reinforcement by reminding your dog of simple commands, exposing him to new people and providing positive reinforcement is important. This will keep your dog well behaved and allow him to remain a happy member of the family.
Teaching your dog a fun trick, such as “play dead” can be a fun way of distracting him. When your dogs behavior is bad, simply use the command you have established for his trick instead of using negative punishment. This provides for a fun activity for your dog and creates a positive environment for you as well.
Create a bridge between the dog’s response to a command and the reward for success. By saying a bridge word such as “yes” or “good”, you will reinforce that the behavior is acceptable and the reward will follow. Keep using this bridge word even after training is complete to be consistent with your pet.
It is important to understand that training your dog will require a lot of patience and repetition. It often takes a dog between 25 and 50 repetitions before they are able to learn a new command. Getting frustrated will only delay your results and may hurt your relationship with your pet.
If your dog tends to chew on your shoes or other household items, you can stop this behavior by giving the dog a yummy substitute, such as a raw hide bone, to chew. The dog will likely abandon your shoes in favor of the raw hide, as the only reason he or she is chewing your shoes is that he or she is bored and needs something to do.
Have flexibility when training your dog. Be willing to vary or change a routine if it isn’t working. You may need to try different locations or times of day. You may need to adjust the duration of your training schedule if it is too long a session, or too short.
When giving a dog a flea bath, start at the neck and work towards the tail. To prevent fleas from getting into your dog’s eyes, ears, or nose, begin the bath by creating a barrier of wet, soapy fur around the dog’s neck. As you work your way down, fleas will have no choice but to head for the tail, and inevitably, their death by drowning.
It’s easy to see how a few lifestyle changes can truly benefit your canine friend for years to come. Your dog needs rules, boundaries and guidance to make the right choices, and he depends on you to set him up for success. Your job as a pet owner is to always make sure your pet is comfortable. A solid training routine to build his confidence is the first step to behavioral success.