In this article you'll find information on – how to get your household ready for dog training success:
Welcoming a furry canine friend into your home is a commitment that requires you to invest years of taking on responsibility, but offers the highest returns of any investment – loyal companionship. Your canine housemate needs to be nurtured with good nutrition and hydration, regular grooming and health care, regular exercise, shelter and somewhere comfortable to sleep. Provided the basics are in place, your puppy will welcome some dog obedience training basics.
Just like us, dogs thrive when they understand what the boundaries of acceptable behaviour in and outside of your home are. A well behaved pet dog is a happy dog. A happy pet that is adaptable and easy to be with whatever the situation makes for a happy household.Dogs are eager to please their pack. To gain your approval, your puppy needs to know what you expect from him or her across a full range of situations.
Setting aside regular, focused time for obedience training with your new puppy is a fantastic way to strengthen your special bond early. Training time can be rewarding for everyone involved.The Royal Society Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) recommends consistent, positive reinforcement or reward based training as the most effective way to teach your dog right from wrong when it comes to acceptable behaviour.
...and the benefits? Endless in terms of the moments of joy you’ll all share with your four legged housemate. But the greatest reward for your commitment to training your dog is more than a decade of easy companionship with someone that simply wants to please you.
“When the Man waked up he said, ‘What is Wild Dog doing here?’ And the Woman said, ‘His name is not Wild Dog any more, but the First Friend, because he will be our friend for always and always and always.'”
—Rudyard Kipling author of The Jungle Book
If you are looking for a comprehensive dog training solution, or to correct problem behaviours in your dog, make sure you consult a professional. Your local vet, RSPCA, a good quality dog kennel, a puppy training school or an experienced dog behaviourist or trainer could help.In this handbook, we’ll walk you through some dog training basics so that sharing a home with your canine family member is a happy experience for everyone involved.
Reward based training can be an enjoyable time together for you and your dog. Schedule short but focused, regular training sessions of no more than 5 minutes at a time, and around 20 minutes in total each day.Rewards can include dog friendly food treats, kind words, an encouraging tone, a walk, a play, a favourite toy or even a tummy rub. A positive outcome in recognition of acceptable behaviour is a reward.
Clicker training is a popular reward based obedience training method which is often used along with treats. A clicker is a small handheld object that makes a short, sharp ‘click’. It is used to confirm with your pet dog that he or she has just done exactly the right thing, and that a treat is coming their way! The benefit of a clicker over your voice is that the tone and volume is always consistent.For the purpose of this guide, we’ll incorporate clicker based training in to each lesson. Everyone loves a gadget, and a clicker makes positive reinforcement a little easier.
Once you work through the basic dog care activities below and define SMART goals for each, add them to your online calendar, with an automatic reminder. You’ll reach auto-pilot in caring for your puppy or dog well. Your dog will thrive and will be a very willing learner when all his or her pet care needs are met.Regularly scheduled obedience training sessions will be valuable for you and your dog if you are clear on what your goals are, and work through this guide lesson by lesson.
Don’t rush puppy obedience training by trying to teach your dog all the commands in one go!Work through each lesson one at a time. Once you’ve mastered the first lesson, move on to the second lesson. Patience truly is a virtue when it comes to dog obedience training.When you are out and about with your dog, there will be distractions galore to contend with.
To live happily together for the rest of your dog’s life, you must be prepared to commit to reinforcing basic obedience training across a range of situations and varying levels of distraction.
LOW LEVEL DISTRACTIONS INCLUDE WHEN:
MEDIUM LEVEL DISTRACTIONS INCLUDE WHEN:
HIGH LEVEL DISTRACTIONS INCLUDE WHEN:
A RANGE OF SITUATIONS INCLUDES:
For each of the dog obedience training basics lessons below, make sure that you practice each lesson in varying ranges of situations and distraction level until you are confident that your dog understands what is expected of him or her.
To successfully master these dog obedience training basics, it is a good idea to draw up a chart that includes each of the five basic obedience commands, followed by the full range of mixes of situations and distractions. That way, you can progressively work through these so that you and your dog reach a level of understanding of what is the right way to behave regardless of the situation or level of distractions.
Once your puppy can respond to his or her name, you have a simple way of calling your beloved canine to attention.
It is important that right from the beginning you train the whole household to only use your dog’s name as a way to gain his or her attention, but not to scold.
Being able to get your dog’s attention by calling their name will make life easier for you at your local leash free dog park. There will be calls of ‘sit’, ‘come’ and ‘stay’ everywhere. You’ll want to differentiate getting your dog’s attention from all the other wagging tails.
Remember: kindness toward your pet dog is not about being soft on obedience. Neglecting to equip your dog with some obedience training basics will create stress for your pet, for you and for your human loved ones.
Success is when your dog looks at you in a situation outside of your home with a high level of distraction. It will take practice and patience to achieve this.
Once your dog knows exactly what to do when you say ‘come’, you’ll be able to command your way out of the most precarious of situations.Responding to ‘come’ is a good solution to distract your pet dog from unwanted behaviours such as eating a bloated toad fish washed up on the beach!
Success is when your dog comes to you in a situation outside of your home where there are tonnes of distractions. Practice removing yourself from your dog’s sight – for example hide behind a tree - and say ‘come’. It will take practice and patience to achieve this but is a useful obedience command to use in trickier situations where your dog may otherwise be in danger.
Having your four-legged buddy sit on command can be helpful in situations where you need to distract your dog from unwanted behaviour. For example, if your dog slips into defending territory mode when an unknown delivery person steps through your front gate, having your dog sit on command helps them gain self-control giving you both time to assess the situation. Fortunately, teaching your dog to sit is one of the simplest commands for you both to master.
Success is when your dog will respond to ‘sit’ in a situation outside of your home with a high level of distraction around.
Teaching your dog to respond to ‘down’ by lying down is an effective way to help distract and calm your dog. For example, if your dog escaped out of your yard and was heading straight for the road, responding to ‘down’ in time, could even save your dog’s life. It will stop your dog, giving you time to respond to the situation while keeping your dog still and calm.
Success is when your dog will respond to ‘down’ in a situation outside of your home with a high level of distraction around. This is potentially a veterinary emergency bill saving command to practice when you’re away from home and near busy roads.
Succeeding in communicating what is expected of your dog when you say ‘stay’ can be helpful in situations where you need your dog to stay put while you attend to something else that needs your immediate attention.
‘Stay’ can be tricky basic command for you both to master as it goes against your pet dogs natural desire to stay close to the pack.
Success is when your dog will respond to ‘stay’ in a situation outside of your home with a high level of distraction around.
A great human companion for a pet dog is a resourceful human that seeks knowledge in the interest of enjoying a long and happy life of co-habitation together. A well trained dog will bring a lot of joy to your household.
On behalf of all pet dogs thank you for taking the time to find out all you can to train your dog well. Happy households!