The kind, fair and effective way
Training can be started at any age, the sooner the better. You can start simple training with your puppy as soon as he or she has settled into his/her new home. Older dogs are also receptive to training, although some may be less keen or quick to learn than a younger dog. Done properly, training should be fun, both for you and your dog, aswell as exercising his brain and reinforcing the good relationship between you. Positive rewards In order to be effective and to gain the best results, all training should be based around positive rewards. Positive reward training works because if you reward your dog with something he wants as soon as he does what you ask, he is far more likely to do it again. Rewards can be anything that your dog orpuppy really wants and could include; food treats, a favourite toy, playing a certain game or petting. However, really tasty treats will usually work best – try small pieces of dried liver, hotdog sausage, chicken or cheese for maximum effect. If you are using food treats, you will need to reduce the size of your dog's normal meals or use his whole meal divided up into smaller portions, toprevent your dog putting on weight. Always combine the giving of a reward with verbal praise such as "Good dog". When teaching a new command, you will need to reward your dog every time that he does what you ask correctly. Once he has the hang of the command, however, it is a good idea to change the way you reward by only giving the reward every now and then, because this will make your dog try harderfor his reward. Always verbally praise your dog each time, even if he is not being rewarded with a treat. Why punishment doesn't work Punishment should never be used in training. If you punish your dog, it will only teach him to be scared of you and may eventually teach him to be aggressive. He will mistrust you and your relationship may break down. Avoid punishment in training (and everyday life)by trying the following – it’ll be far more effective and could improve your relationship with your dog: Reward all wanted behaviour – so that your dog is likely to repeat it in the future Ignore unwanted behaviour – so that your dog is less likely to repeat it. For some dogs ‘nasty’ attention can be as rewarding as ‘nice’ attention – so no attention is better Avoid triggering the unwantedbehaviour – avoidance prevents the unwanted behaviour from happening in the first place! Where unwanted behaviour cannot be ignored or avoided, train an alternative, acceptable behaviour for your dog to perform instead. It is much easier to train a dog to do something else that you don’t mind, than to train him to completely stop something that you do not like. For example, if your dog jumps upat people, teach him a really good ‘sit’ command and
ask for this when meeting others. If he is rewarded with treats and attention every time he sits, he’ll soon automatically be doing this when he meets people, instead of jumping up! The basic commands The five basic commands you will need to teach your dog in order to obtain a good degree of control are; Sit, down, stay, come and walkingnicely on the lead. This is our guide to training in a kind and effective way. Sit Have your dog standing in front of you. Show him that you have a food treat in your hand. Slowly move your hand and treat above and over his head towards his tail, as you give the command "sit". His head should go up as he tries to reach the treat................... ................and his bottom should godown into the 'sit' position. Give him the treat and praise him. Do not push his bottom down to make him sit, as he is likely to push up against your hand as a result and may hurt his back. When training your dog to sit, use the command "sit". Do not use "sit down" as this may confuse your dog when you try to teach the 'down' command. Down Ask your dog to sit and show him the treat in your hand....