Do you love Diy dog training and don’t know where to start? Then below are the top 10 secret training tips that help you to train your dog well:
- Exercise : By giving your dog plenty of exercises, it will be less likely to misbehave. Teach your dog to walk a treadmill. (It only takes 15-30 minutes to teach, watch World Of Dog Training eCourse “Treadmill Training” for this information.) Another option is to walk your dog with a doggie backpack on. Fill it with 10%-20% of your dog’s body weight. Ruffwear is a manufacturer of these backpacks.
Backpack: It is evident by this dog’s loose open mouth that he enjoys wearing his pack. That is because he associates it with going out and being active.
- Humans are always first : Ensure that you are the first one through the doorway. If you allow your dog to bolt through the door, you are sending the message that the dog decides where you walk.
TIP: Step into/towards the dog as they try to crowd the door, thus scooting it back.
- Alpha dog eats first : Myself Ryan Matthews the best dog trainer is a big proponent of teaching dog psychology to my clients, because the better we can mock a dog’s natural instincts and abilities, the more balanced it will be. In the wild, the alpha dog always eats first, so you should be doing the same.
- Think about what you are praising: One of the most misunderstood things people do with their dogs is to console them when the dog is nervous, timid, scared, or uncertain. I understand you are thinking like a human and trying to comfort the dog; this is completely logical in our human mind. However, dogs do not think the same way we do, therefore when you think you are consoling, the message the dog receives is that you like the dog to be in that weak state of mind, so do not praise if the dog is feeling uncertain.
- Give a dog a job : Like us, dogs enjoy a task. Working breeds especially will do much better once you begin to give them a job such as herding, K-9 nose work, flyball or herding classes. Imagine being born to do a specific job and never using your talents.
- Repetition : Dogs learn a basic “sit” on up to the most challenging trick by repetition. Generally speaking, when teaching something new, we are looking for about 3-5 successful repetitions in a row, then stop with that success.
- Consistency : As most of us have experienced, the more you follow through, the better your dog will be. So, if you aren’t able or willing to follow through on a command, simply do not give it. Dogs will listen to owners that are consistent. Don’t use questions in place of commands such as, “Can you sit?” Simply tell the dog what you want rather than asking.
- Timing : If you have heard of Pavlov’s Law, you know that timing is crucial in order for the dog to make the connection as to what you are praising or correcting. A correction and reward should happen within one second of the wanted or undesired behavior.
- Reward : A reward is important when teaching a new behavior because it will help keep the dog stay engaged and provide positive feedback. Dogs have an instinctive thought process which is essential, “What’s in it for me?” With that way of thinking, you can see how it is important to have something to motivate your pet when training. Rewards can come in various forms, physical or verbal praise, ball, bite tug, food or releasing pressure/stress. I have found the best reward to use is food, however, not just any food. The treat should be small, soft and of high value to the dog.
Small, soft food is ideal because it can be consumed quickly and will not fill the pet’s stomach up too quickly. Also, food is typically the biggest motivator for the average dog. Something to keep in mind when giving a reward, for it to be effective, the treat must come within one second of the desired behavior. Additionally, the placement of the food is crucial. For example, if I am teaching a client’s dog to “down” and am rewarding the “down,” the treat must be presented at the dog’s nose level. If I were to offer the treat at my knee level, it would promote the pet to come up out of the down position. Think of it simply as placing the reward to be taken from the position you want the dog in.
For the most part, a reward should be given every time a new behavior is being taught. However, once a dog begins to show proficiency, I switch to a variable reward schedule. That means I only give the treat at random. The result will be a canine that always anticipates the reward because they never know when they may receive it. Once a pet is almost 100% perfect with a task/behavior, I eliminate food and use physical or verbal praise.
One final, the important though is to only reward when impressed. Try not to praise your dog for just looking cute; otherwise, your praise will lose meaning.
- Teaching in Pictures : Dogs learn in pictures and think similar to autistic people, so when teaching new things, ask yourself if your dog has learned the behavior in that picture/environment. The sooner you can understand how your dog thinks and learns, the quicker you will have a happy, obedient and balanced dog. I find that people assume their dog will do a command even though the dog hasn’t proven their proficiency. In the example of a “down” command, your dog may be solid with that verbal cue in your home, but that doesn’t mean she will have it mastered out in public. The surface is a factor as well. Again, if your pet has no problem doing a “down” on the carpet, it still needs to be challenged to perform that task on slick surfaces, grass or concrete. For various reasons, some canines form a perception that they dislike a particular thing. The natural tendency is to avoid exposing your pet to the things that stress them out. However, in order to have a confident and happy pet, you must expose them to those stressors and train in the stressful environment.