Regardless of what you might have heard or read, training a dog is an exciting endeavor, and in our candid opinion, there is nothing as fulfilling as seeing their cute paws respond to your commands. Even at that, dog training can be daunting, especially if it’s your first time and you are doing it yourself.
But dog training could be less of a task. It can be fun. How?
When you follow the 8 dog training tips we have gathered in this piece, the process will be more convenient and rewarding. And it doesn’t matter if you’re doing a crate or potty training; our tips will come in handy.
But before we delve into the said tips. Let’s resolve the cornerstone of dog training. Which of the commands should come first?
If you’re doing DIY, the chances are that you have arranged your command list. But did you do it right?
And if you had contracted your dog’s training to a trainer, you should still know the proper sequence regardless. So, what is the right way? What should you train your dog first?
Potty training should come first, and here is why:
Before training, instill a sense of discipline and cleanliness in your dog. And the fundamental way to do that is with the potty. If you get it right, you won’t keep up with dirty and smelly interiors and exteriors.
After potty, try guarding, mouthing, and obedience training – sequentially. Once you have completed the essentials we listed, you can now follow your “list.”
That said, let’s get back to the tips that will help you achieve desirable results from your dog’s training.
When drafting your commands, ensure they are brief and straightforward. Wordy sentences are going too far and won’t even work. Why?
If you use a long-sentence command, your dog will mostly only assimilate the first two words. So, isn’t it best that you use a two-word phrase then?
If you do, your dog will grab training commands fast and comfortably. And short phrases are easy to mouth for you.
Moreso, if you look at the usual commands, they are usually one or two words. E.g. “go, boy,” “sit,” and “fetch.”
Indeed, dogs are intelligent pets. Even at that, voice command by itself won’t aid the training of your dog.
To make the training process faster, add gestures to your voice commands. For example, mumbling “go” to your dog won’t be as effective as uttering the word and gesticulating with your hands.
So, use more than your voice; add gestures with your eyes and body parts. You can even use treats.
Dogs use more than their ears when taking your commands. Beyond the words and your gestures, your tone also matters.
Do you yell at or baby talk your dog? Or are you even scared of your pet?
If you answer yes to those questions, your training will hardly stick. And that’s because your dog won’t take you seriously since they can sense your unassertiveness and energy.
So, instead of baby talk and being scared, be assertive and calm when you command your dog. And whatever you do, don’t yell; else, you won’t see the desired result. Worse, your dog might act out.
Yes, we advised you to be assertive and “serious.” But too much of such, and your dog might lose interest.
Moreover, dogs are playful animals. They love to run and play. So, note the basics while designing your training drills.
Instead of a long training section, try short drills and add breaks. Be mindful of the breaks; spread them across the said sections. That way, you won’t bore your dog while trying to train her.
Do you have specific training times for your dog? Or do you only train when you feel like it?
If you don’t have training times, it is high time that you created one. When you have routines, they help prepare your dog mentally and even physically.
More importantly, consistent training times help you get results. For example, with routines, you can reshuffle your potty drills towards mealtime. That way, it is easier to test if your pet understood you.
However, note that rigid routines can come off as a bore to your dogs. For that reason, try as much as possible to create windows for surprise drills when you have the time.
Even while planning your dog’s training routine, you should think about the techniques. So, which will it be? Classical or operant conditioning?
Perhaps you don’t know the difference; let’s help you:
In any case, the two techniques are vital to your dog’s overall training. That said, find a balance and make as many changes as possible until you arrive at the right fit for your pet.
Understandably, you might worry that if you involve too many trainers, your dog might lose the whole point entirely. Well, don’t be.
At the same time, don’t bombard your dog with countering training. Instead, let the other members of your household know about your plans and goals.
That way, no one will counteract your training routines and techniques. Besides, you can use your household to test if your dog understands your command.
Overall, we understand that despite your efforts, your dog might not adapt to your training fast. Even at that, don’t relent. Instead, be patient and keep calm.
Try different techniques until you reach the desired result. When you do, you will be happy about the journey.
Remember, the key to rewarding dog training is repetition!
While you are at it, you might even keep a journal. With that, you can read back and smile at the fun you derived while training your dog.