DOG TRAINING: WHAT TO KEEP IN MIND DURING THE PROCESS
Source: The South African (Extract)
Posted: June 22, 2023
Owning a dog is a wonderful experience, and teaching them tricks is a fun way to bond and spend time together.
Dogs view all training exercises, whether obedience or fun tricks, as the same.
Teaching your dog tricks provides the social interactions they need to stay happy.
It’s a great way to strengthen the bond between you and your furry companion.
There are, however, things you want to avoid when teaching your dog ANY trick!
1. CROWDED AREAS
Selecting the right training location is just as important as the training itself.
A quiet space provides an ideal environment for your dog to focus on you without distractions.
Choosing a peaceful setting allows for better concentration during training sessions.
Treats are highly motivating for dogs and serve as a powerful incentive.
Select treats that your dog loves and is eager to work for.
However, some dogs may become overly excited or distracted by high-value treats.
Be mindful of finding the right balance to maintain your dog’s focus during training.
By choosing the right timing, you can ensure your dog is motivated and focused during training sessions.
Training requires energy, so avoid conducting sessions immediately after a long, tiring walk.
Also, don’t schedule training sessions right after mealtime to maximize treat motivation.
4. LONG TRAINING SESSIONS
Dogs have short attention spans.
Keep training sessions short to accommodate that.
Pay attention to your dog’s behaviour and signs of fatigue, stress, or disinterest.
A few minutes a day should be sufficient for training.
Some dogs may take longer to learn new tricks, requiring weeks instead of days for training.
Practice patience and provide encouragement and appreciation to your dog throughout the learning process.
Assess if your dog is comfortable, if the movement is challenging, or if they are simply not ready for the trick yet.
Dogs generally enjoy learning new things, so use training as an opportunity to strengthen your bond and have fun together.
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